Grateful for birthdays. It was a happy but quiet celebration. Glad my sister is here. More family coming in soon. It was a relaxing day.
Steve, Mary and I took a walk around the Highland Park Reservoir after supper. We got drenched when a sudden thunderstorm appeared just after I took these photos of the peaceful water.
Our power has been out a few hours now. Heard a tree is down on Highland Avenue. Wires down. Hope it can be fixed soon.
We’re celebrating the Fourth of July in Virginia. I’m grateful for another birthday.
When I was Maura’s age I used to think all the fireworks were just for me on my birthday. Ha!
Not sure if there will be fireworks to celebrate the fourth as there’s rain and more rain.
My granddaughter Maura (4) sings the Star Spangled Banner with a slight alteration of the opening lyrics.
“Okay, can you see?” or more like “O-O-O-Okay can you see”
The title for this post could also be How to Photograph Four Kids at a Time. I’ve had a lot of practice. It’s not impossible but to get ALL four with their best expression is not an easy task. Add the new puppy Henry to the effort.
I’ve used the -get ’em in action method- quite a few times. On the playground, the backyard, the hula hoop, the swing, the bicycle. Anything so they aren’t conscious of Grandma’s lens.
The sitting around all in a row or even staggered grouping and looking at my lens with the old CHEEEEESE doesn’t work for me. Or them Not that I haven’t tried. Canon 70-200mm L series lens ISO 100 f/2.8 1/125 I’m up on the front porch.
On Your Mark-
And they’re off-
Uh oh not that view of Henry. Henry, turn around.
Oh Henry, turn around. Nah, too posed looking. ACTION!
Maura, Anna, Michael and Jack and Henry
Here they come.
Anna calls to Henry to join them.
He’s getting it now
A moment of childhood captured.
Maura doesn’t like coming in last. Henry is watching the cows in the field next door.
The blog has been a real family effort since I have been on vacation. My DIL drove by slowly so I could shoot the giant flag and Mustang on the lawn. This is one of those 100+ days we had in early July. Already we are past mid July! Oh my.
Now it’s drought conditions around here so the lawns are more brown. The thunderstorms just don’t provide enough precipitation
But I really grew up in New Jersey. New York always sounded better to me and I have held onto that fact all these years. Joisey, the Garden State, just didn’t seem as cool.
Yes, it is my sixtieth birthday today. YIKES! We were supposed to drive to Roanoke VA but power outages from the bad storm last Friday knocked that plan out! You’ve seen a lot of my life these past three years on the blog. The art room adventures, some knitting, my pleasure in the eating and making of food, my family, the city, my travels, and as Arlene says, the ordinary- making it interesting!
I have been talking about turning sixty since I turned fifty-nine last year. Go figure.
My friend Mary Ann told me someone asked her if she was afraid to turn sixty and she told me her response was, “I’m afraid to NOT turn sixty” Many are denied the chance.
If you are born on the Fourth of July you receive a lot of red, white and blue presents. One has to post a little red white and blue on the Fourth of July so here are the two free marzipan macarons you receive when you buy the dozen at Jean-Marc in Millvale*
And then there is this prize winner of my wonderful haircut and chubby cheeks, I think I was three, This picture is stuck in one of those “magnetic” photo albums- meaning nasty glue that ruins your photo and you can’t remove it- EVER.
And here is what I looked like last week in the heat at the Pirates Game in Pittsburgh with my three year old granddaughter Maura. A nice woman filling the ketchup dispenser came over and asked it I wanted her to take it of us. She enjoyed seeing Maura enjoy her cone and I had photographed her eating it (of course). I don’t get in many photos which is just as well at this point. But when I think about what makes me happy in my life, my family is at the top of the list. I am fortunate indeed.
Here is a picture a first grader drew of me last year which I photographed on my phone. I am so glad I documented this artwork cause on the rough days and the long days of teaching art in the city, I can read her inscription at the bottom.
Ms. Hendricks is my hero.
It doesn’t get any better than that!
And I found this next photo in New York City when I visited my sister a couple months ago. Once I was visiting a family friend, Naomi, in a home and she said told me how she would think of all she was grateful for in her life and when she focused on a theme of gratitude she just couldn’t feel bad about anything. I remember her words and she died shortly after the visit. It is easy to forget to be grateful. Once I read about thinking three things you are grateful for each day, right before you go to sleep and I try to remember.
I am grateful to my family, friends, fellow bloggers and followers and wonderful commenters who have encouraged me in my photography, blogging and writing.
Today is a very happy birthday! I am surrounded by my family who love me.
Thanks everyone. (And Happy Birthday Suzanne who shares the date!)
*Here is a shot of Millvale,PA taken the day I bought the macarons!
Sun dropping in the sky, we’d just come from another cookout. Anna asked if I’s take her picture with the mailbox. This was taken just before the sparklers in the backyard, posted yesterday. Tonight is the last night in Columbus with the family. It’s been a happy vacation.
We all said they don’t make sparklers like they used to when we were kids. Isn’t that what old people say about the present state of things?
The kids had a blast running around with the dangerous spark and flame-spewing sticks. A familiar smell of gunpowder. Smoke trails across the lawn.
Hamburgers and hotdogs, some grilled chicken breasts. Redskinned potatoes and green beans, tomato and fresh mozzarella salad. Sparklers. One guest brought a margarita machine and some shrimp to grill- there were glass bottles of coca-cola with cane sugar and cupcakes decorated with flags. A fire in the firepit. Water balloons and squirt guns. Glow in the dark necklaces. Seventeen kids and their parents. Three grandparents. Steve drove in from Pittsburgh. Perfect summer weather. I practiced family photography with each family in the back yard. Lots of red white and blue. I planned to post the cupcakes in the cupcake display stand Joanne sent from Omaha but Jack, exhausted won out!