Murphy the Airedale’s Summer Cut

Taken just as the sun was slipping below the horizon.


Wednesday night was the swim banquet and I came home in one car with Jack and Maura.  Jack opened the door and Murphy came out to greet us.  Such excitement and welcoming greetings.   He had been to the groomer’s earlier in the day.   He was so happy to see us come home.  Erika told me that he was feeling left out since I don’t photograph him like I used to. I asked her how she knew. She said he had texted her.

So there he was sitting so nicely on the driveway and the sun was setting and I had my camera from the swim banquet right there and I called him and he looked right at me.

He is a sweet dog.  I know everyone has their breeds they are loyal to and Rob has his OPD’s as his favorite breed( other peoples’ dogs) Murphy adores his family and they adore him.  He is affectionate and patient and likes to be near people.  I don’t have my own dog but enjoy Murphy when I visit.  Sometimes he comes to stay at my house when the family goes on vacation.

Since the temperature was 99 degrees plus humidity factor today and it felt like 110 I’m sure it felt good to have his hair cut.

As far as photographs go this is not my best as he looks like a bit like a cardboard cutout against the concrete but I think it captures his personality. Don’t think I have a future in pet portraits.

Playing in Summer Rain

It was an easy decision.  Mom said YES!   We looked for rainbows as the sun was out in places.  I brought out the umbrella so I could protect the camera and lens.  When the rain stopped, I put it down.  Maura picked it up immediately and then when she put it down, Jack picked it up.

The rain was gentle and warm. Not like the wild thunder and lightning storm last night.  An easy summer evening rain. The kids had a blast.




Aunt Lala Pushes All 3 Swings, Anna Moves the Pink Flamingoes and S’mores-on-a-Stick*

Aunt Lala took turns pushing her niece and nephews on the backyard swingset.  The kids didn’t want her to stop.  You should have heard them squeal.  Anna was moving the two pink flamingoes that Pap purchased and installed in the back garden. She said,”They’ll look better over here.”


*Laura found the  recipe for the S’mores-on-a-Stick through a blog she reads so check it out. She and Anna made them together and put them in the fridge during dinner.  La brought white lollipop sticks to hold the s’mores.  The kids devoured them! Fun to eat.








Up and Down Game in the Pool

Maura's head bumps the top of the frame and a slice cut off but I liked the way the water ran off the lifejacket and Anna's ponytail. It was fun to watch them have so much fun. Big sister-little sister enjoying the refreshing pool- the temp outside was 88 degrees!

One thing I noticed this visit is that we no longer hang out at the baby pool. How quickly everything changes.

I used to sit there for hours while the kids painted the concrete with paintbrushes, poured one bucket of water into another and the filled the sprinkler cans with the handles and spouts- fill and dump, fill and dump, and do it a hundred times.   They always loved those beach toys at the pool.  Now the three oldest are on the swim team, the eldest two the dive team and Maura at 2.5 isn’t too far behind.  Still sporting a life jacket, she wants to jump off the side of the pool repeatedly and she even makes a motorboat sound as the older two pull her around.  So the pool game is up and down and she loves it!

Tomorrow is a big swim meet in New Albany and so tonight at the pool the kids had their hair spray painted green and received new green swim team shirts with ducks on them. The team mascot.    A pep rally of sorts, to get everyone pumped up and excited for the effort.

Won’t be long and Maura will join her brothers and sisters on the swim team I’m sure!




On Walters’ Pond- They Had to Throw it Back

A cookout. Kids running around playing ball. Some on the swing set. Men teaming up to play cornhole. A group of kids on the dock.  Hamburegers hotdogs on the grill.  Salad and fruit.  Macaroni and cheese.  The kids actually caught a little fish and threw him back.  I photographed several of the families so they could have a family picture.   It was a beautiful summer night.

Tulip Festival Dancers in Cambria City-Johnstown PA

One of the tulip ballerinas flashes the peace sign to the audience awaiting their performance.


Artists Laura Jean McLaughlin and David Ziller and a community of volunteers created the stunning Mosaic Tulips on the side of the Tulip Bottling Company, now an art gallery called Bottleworks.  You can read all about the creation of this colorful and inspiring work here.  Artist Bill Pfahl told me about the Festival and he had paintings inside the show at the Bottleworks Gallery. My colleague and friend M accompanied me on the adventure to Johnstown PA.  We each ate a $2 BBQ ham sandwich.



Moonrise Over Bocce Court in Bloomfield

As I an writing this post I think that it is almost two years that I started the blog.  And when I checked the stats I see that the first post was 7-14-09.   Two years and a day. Happy Blog–aversary. Thanks to all the readers who have followed my blog, written comments on the blog, written nice emails to me or told me about which photo they enjoyed seeing. And to the friends of friends who have shared the posts and photographs, whom I have met only online, I appreciate your good feedback, too.  SO here is the today’s post-

Stephanie cuts my hair. She asked me how the photography was going.  I told her how I photograph and post a photo of the day on the blog. (Today is the #658 post.) She told Jack, her husband and he looked at my photos online and invited me down Thursday night when he  plays Bocce. Here is his website.

It was a perfect summer evening and the men were gracious, allowing me to photograph the games.  Tried to be unobtrusive and hung there for over two hours. One gentleman is 97 years old!  I sat on a bench at the end of the court for a time, shooting intermittently. A little conversation here and there.    And there was the moonrise over the bocce court.

Although I was invited to the mid-season party at the Pleasure Bar on Tuesday, I already have plans with the grandchildren….but I got to hear the menu!  Mmmmmm.  I am really missing out.   Fortunately there is an end of season party in the fall!.

Thanks Jack and to the Bocce League, playing under the cars passing over the Bloomfield Bridge on a summer night.

Doing Her Sister’s Hair

Maura (2+) doesn’t let me brush her hair or add a barrette or bow when I visit.  And if you get a band in she is likely to pull it out.  I went upstairs to see how we were coming along on getting ready to load up the car. Drive to Laura’s and James’  for the 4th of July.  Anna(7+) was brushing and putting Maura’s hair into a ponytail. This is never an easy task.

Anna had just set the pink brush on the bench.  And Maura was sitting there with her feet dangling. Looking in the mirror.     I thought it best to get them unaware. No time to clear up the background.  Just shoot.   After a few minutes, Anna turns to me and said “She is my WORST customer.”

( The tattoo is temporary!)

Looked Nuclear to Me But It’s Coal Burning

Sometimes you just have to pull over on the side of the road and hurry up and get the camera out.  Hurry.  cause the daylight is scant.  You see something – want to make a note of it.  Driving home from Indiana PA last Saturday night, I saw this scene on the horizon at dusk.  Limits of photography, the photograph can’t capture the expansive and open feel of the country, the space. This plant touts the third tallest chimney in the world.  I went and read about it. I discovered it isn’t a nuclear plant. Those big coolers made it look nuclear to me. Flip a switch, turn on a burner, twist a faucet. We use energy daily. Don’t think much about the source, how it gets to us.   You can read about it on Wikipedia. Here’s my visual.