Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Monday, January 29, 2007

Birthday Pupu Platter...

As viewed from my side of the table...

Self Portrait

"Used Womb"

Early Birthday Gifts to Myself

Jeff took me out to dinner for my birthday tonight at a Japanese steakhouse. It was oh so yummy and entertaining since the chef cooks at your table. But, I had forgotten to put a new battery in the camera so we didn't get any shots. Instead, you get to see what I bought for myself in the 15 minutes we had before the bookstore closed. I am anxiously awaiting my chocolate birthday fondue tomorrow or actually later tonight since it is past midnight here.

Sunday, January 28, 2007

An accurate picture of our day...

Notice Jeff and the Girls playing The Bratz Passion for Fashion game in the background.... I had the pleasure of playing it with the girls earlier in the day. ;)


Remnants of the day in the background... magnetix, cadoo, etc.

Saturday, January 27, 2007

A Half Day in My Life...

Arriving at the library for a preschool field trip... I caught Eve offguard.

This is my absolute favorite house in town. It went on the market finally last summer with an asking price of I think $699,000. I believe it sold for over a million. I would've liked to have gotten a better photo of it but I felt very uncomfortable shooting photos of someone else's house without permission. I stayed close to the car in case I needed to make a quick getaway. I probably would've explained myself if someone came out, though. This house is much bigger than it looks and has a carriage house behind it in the same style. I pass by this house at least once a week, sometimes more.

Eve and I stopped for lunch at Friendly's. She shared her hot fudge sundae with me... whatta girl!

Lest Julie or anyone else think I live in a grand area with no ugly developments or 5 line highways... here's my least favorite intersection if you drive the opposite direction from my favorite town. This intersection is about 12 minutes from my house when it is not rush hour. During rush hour, it could take a half hour to reach it if you didn't use any back roads. And, if you did use back roads, you'd never use this intersection. It's called 5 points. One idiot actually proposed and almost passed getting a traffic circle installed here to replace the light which regulates traffic from 5 roads. Can you imagine trying to merge into a traffic circle that contains 16 wheelers?

Jonah is king of his class for the duration of the Medieval project. Today was the Medieval feast, which you can also view on Jessica's 365 blog. Here he is sitting at the table for the royalty from his class and the other 3.4 class including Jessica's daughter next to him. The serfs had to serve the royalty first.

This is the castle Jonah's class built out of refrigerator boxes. I chose this specific photo because I thought having Eve in it would give you an idea of it's size. This is why I love the charter school. I realize projects like this could be done in a co-op setting but the fact is that we never did projects like this with any of the co-ops we ever were a part of.

My card was full after shooting the Medieval Feast... can you blame me? So, my photo log day ended around 2 pm.

I don't have another photo blog, so I hope you don't mind me overposting here.

Thursday, January 25, 2007

Main St. Baptist Circa 1902...

I shot all of these using natural light. This church is very dark inside especially since they keep the lights off unless the rooms are in use. Jeff observed that the woodwork inside is similar to ours which isn't surprising since they were built around the same time. I was here today because Eve's art class is held in the basement of this church along with other homeschool activities throughout the week. The pastor lets the hs co-op I started along with a different one use his church for free except for donations to cover heat and electricity. You won't find a better deal or better architecture anywhere else.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007


I had big plans to take lots of photos tonight. I put a new battery in my camera and went out in the freezing cold and got to take about nine photos before the battery died. Hmmph! This was the best of the nine photos. The lights are a weird orange flourescent so the whole picture had an orange glow. I tried to tone it down a bit. Anyway, this is a park that is walking distance from my house. I'll probably try photos there again and perhaps bring an extra battery pack.

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

UFO Moon

All I did today was laundry and combing. So, I was surprised and relieved to see a UFO moon when I looked outside tonight.

Monday, January 22, 2007

The Shepherd has a talk with the IDog...

"You're 2007 years too late..."

"Better late than never..."

(not posed but found this way)

Sunday, January 21, 2007

Sunday Breakfast Tradition... Day 24

Remnants of a breakfast well eaten.

On most Sundays either after church or in place of church, we eat breakfast out at our neighborhood greasy spoon. The usual fare: creamed chipped beef on wheat with home fries smothered in onions and the kids almost always pork roll, egg and cheese on a bagel. Today, Chaya made the rare switch to one of the specials, a short stack of chocolate chip pancakes.

And, this is Marianne. She has been our main waitress for most of the 7 years that we've been going there. I love her. She always has a smile on her face, usually knows what all of us are going to order unless we go for one of the specials, and always asks how we are. This isn't the best photo of her because I didn't want to take her photo without her permission although I did snap one right before she came over to our table. She happily obliged as you can see but not without asking why. I explained the project and told her that she is our most favorite waitress and that we will miss her when she plans to quit later this spring. I think she is almost finished paying off her house and thus the reason she can quit. I will miss her smiling face and joyful disposition.

Saturday, January 20, 2007

Day 23- Susana's Birthday Party...

I almost twisted my ankle again to get pinata shots. I had pulled a bench out to stand on to get an overhead shot and ended up falling off the bench, twisting my ankle, bruising my wrist, and dropping Jeff's camera. Luckily, everything is OK and I only have a bruise. This is the time of year that I have in the past twisted my knee or twisted my strained my ankle so I am thankful that my ankle feels fine.

The story of the pinata is a sour one as most pinata stories go. Let's just say my friend's child got a fist in his stomach and as usual with pinata's children cried over not getting any candy... one of them being the giver of the punch. Phew! I was glad this wasn't my party to host. It was hosted by one of my prayer partners. She handled it well.

This is her daugher, Susana... you'd think she was one of mine with her dark eyes and skin. I like this picture even though I accidentally focused on the candles instead of her.

The Good, The Bad and The Horrifying... Day 22

The Good: Today I helped Eve fill out her favorite things since she is star student at her preschool next week. The very best part of this activity was the fact that she said wrote the word fish all by herself without me having to tell her which letter to use or how to make them! (BTW, who knew that "looking at fish" is her favorite activity? We haven't even had fish for at least a year!)

The Bad: Note the ugly color behind the stars... that is the color of my kitchen counters. :P

The HORRIFYING: I was literally in tears after picking up this prescription at the pharmacy and if I weren't at the end of my rope, I might have considered calling the doctor back and asking for anything, ANYTHING else. Fortunately, so far, so good in terms of the possible side effects.

Thursday, January 18, 2007

Trip to the Library and town...

This is a sculpture outside our library that my kids always have to run up to and interact with when entering and/or exiting the library.

Adjacent to the library is an art museum which is so close they share a courtyard. The courtyard has changing sculpture shows and this sculpture is one of them. Last year, a friend from college and his brother had the honor of showing their work in the courtyard for a month.

This is Mercer Museum. It is across the street from the library and art museum. I love this town. It is actually right next to the town I live in. My town is actually a borough and is very small. The town pictured is only about 5-10 minutes from my house. I love it because it's streets are lined with old Victorian homes mixed with other newer homes, it has three museums, the county library, multiple restaurants and neat stores. When buying our house, we looked at a home in this town but ended up getting our house because it is a much larger Victorian than the one we had looked at in the town.

Mercer Museum houses houses old farm tools and things like that. I don't think I've ever actually been inside but Jeff and the kids have been for various field trips.

Tired, Tired, Tired... Day 20

I am TIRED. The OCD part of my personality won't let me skip a day. I tried, though. So, instead this photo pretty much sums up how I feel... fuzzy, unfocused, tired, frustrated and sad.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Today's Daily Special... Day 19

Cooking bratwurst, tomatoes with basil and garlic, and chopped onions to be mixed into Zataran's Dirty Rice and kidney beans.

The final product in background with lemon poppy seed muffins in the foreground.

Yum! Bon Appetit!

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Ho Hum, It's almost 1:30 am...

This is where I spent the past 9 hours designing wedding albums for Jeff. My computer has taken on it's own life and is getting ready to transport somewhere. I am feeling a bit silly.

We keep trying to move Eve out of our bed. Tonight she is sleeping on the loveseat for the time being. She probably would've stayed in her room but she likes to read aloud to herself at bedtime and Chaya, whom she shares a room with, can't stand hearing Eve read aloud at bedtime... oh to have a 6th? bedroom.

Monday, January 15, 2007

Day 17- Catching up on old things...

Over at Trapdoor during the summer there was a project to do a self portrait. I did mine outside on the porch while Eve did one of herself but never got around to posting a photo of it on TD. Since I forgot to bring a camera to the birthday party I went to today, I decided I'd take a photo of the portrait and one of Jeff since I only had about 30 minutes left to shoot something. Today was a blue day and had I time, I constructed a still life I wanted to take in my head but alas, here are today's offerings instead...

The 20 minute portrait. I did do a separate portrait in oil pastel that took a few hours but it didn't turn out as well and one of the kids added their own stylings to it at some point so I trashed it awhile ago. The expression in this portrait is a pretty good interpretation of how I look when I am angry and although it's very crude, I like it. Currently, it hangs in the diningroom with a couple portraits the kids did of themselves.

Jeff saying that he can't be photographed. ;)

Saturday, January 13, 2007

Day 16- End of the Fencing Tournament...

The fencing tournament ended today. This tournament was not about who was the best fencer but instead was about who was willing to challenge himself the most. Whoever fenced the most students was the winner. Since this class has a wide variety of ages and skill levels this means that the more experienced fencers have to "lower" themselves and either agree to or ask the less skilled fencers to a bout and vice versa. This is a photo of the instructors dressed up for the occasion... some even had drawn on mustaches.

This is the hand-inked certificate for the winners to sign. Note where Jonah placed... 2nd! (He also placed first for the "most jackets hung up" since they try to encourage the students to hang up jackets that have fallen on the floor.) At the end of all the year, the overall tournament winner will win a real sword... pretty cool, huh?

Jonah being announced in second place and shaking hands with my favorite instructor because he is great at teaching the history and etiquette of fencing as well as technique and skill. I think of him as "the rooster" and plan to incorporate him as a character into my fairytale.

Jonah signing the certificate.

Jonah fencing. I had another shot that went with this one that made a great "series" but it got lost and I don't feel like looking for it. Plus, I have major overkilled with the photos today... sorry. Proud mama moment.

Day 15- A Typical Friday Night

Just about every Friday night we have at least two extra teens sleeping over our house. And, every Friday night for the past 15 years at least we have had pizza night. So, if you come into our kitchen anytime between the hours of 10 pm and 2 am, you will sometimes find various teens pigging out on leftover pizza from earlier in the night. Tonight was no exception. Here is Eli (middle) with two of his friends.

Tonight's extra kid tally is 3.

Thursday, January 11, 2007

Day 14- Glassblowing 101...

This is the paperweight I made in glassblowing class last year with Eli. This window is located in my bathroom which is where I keep this paperweight on a shelf.

Detail shot.

Day 13- My Knight in Leather Jacket

Today while driving home from an appt., my big ole Suburban ran out of gas. I can't tell you when the last time this happened... but it was probably back in the early post college days or something.... kinda embarassing but you see the gas gauge on the truck quit working so we have been estimating and I overestimated how much I had left to get to the gas station which was to be one of my stop's. So, I had a nice walk in the falling snowflakes to the 7 to call Jeff who showed up shortly with gas in tow.

By the way, the sick bed photo was from yesterday so this is my actual Wed. photo.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Day 12- The Sick Bed...

Guess who was sick first and therefore no longer sick in these photos?

BTW, my place was next to Chaya on the bed. We laid in there and watched TV for a bit after recovering from the puking night of hell to put it mildly. Jeff was a good nurse.

And, as a side note, I have no idea why these look so washed out. They looked better when I opened them in Photoshop. Oh well. I don't have time to mess around with them. I still need to upload my actual photo from today. Hmmph! The shade of green on my bedroom wall is actually very pretty... not like how it looks here.

Monday, January 8, 2007

Day 11- Life in My House and Out

This is a photo of my beloved prayer group. From left Sadie, Kat and Jessica (Mukhorty). These ladies are dear to me. The way the table looks is pretty typical of how the table looks at the end of prayer group. At times there have been 11 kids and us at prayer group and so we are constantly managing interruptions and doling out snacks. Somehow in the midst of the quiet chaos we are able to share our lives with each other and wrap it up with prayer.

On many a night you can find the girls and me dancing in the kitchen while I make dinner. Tonight I played some Arabic belly dancing music from my itunes collection and she did her interpretation of belly dancing. Chaya joined in later and they took photos of each other which I am going to place on their own shared 365 journal. Jessica's daughter is creating one as well and we are thinking of linking the kids journals together.

The more photos I take, the more I realize how much of my life revolves around being in the kitchen. I think it's time to knock down the wall between the kitchen and laundry room and expand it.