Thursday, October 22, 2009

Life is interesting

I realize that I haven't been posting as much as usual lately. But, well quite honestly, "real" life, life that doesn't happen here in cyberspace, has kept me pretty busy. Actually, Life is interesting and I'm going to enjoy each and every moment of it!!

Let's see, what's been going on?? Well, simple things really, things that folks take for granted all the time. Talking to people I care about, spending time doing things I enjoy doing, and learning how to be part of the world again. Boy, that sounds all mysterious and stuff, doesn't it?

I'm just being me. And believe me, that's a job. Some days being me isn't all it's cracked up to be, but lately being me is really a great thing to be.

I've been writing again, not just here on the blog, but I've been doing the poetry thing again, and I've been re-reading some things I wrote years ago. Some of the things I wrote years ago are actually pretty good and I'm finishing, or at least trying to finish, a few of them.

I'm still doing the photography thing. I've always done photography, it's just that now I "see" things differently. You may have noticed by some of my photos, I see beauty in places that some (most) people don't. But that's okay, I know that I'm different from everyone else, and that's as it should be.

I'm trying to get some personal issues worked out, things that I really don't discuss with many people. It's more an issue of trying to figure out things about myself and why I am the way I am. It's tough work, but some one's got to do it and there is no one more qualified than I am.

I've been designing some patterns for winter. Primitive patterns that is. I don't have many done right now, the one handed thing is really slowing me down, but I'm putting thoughts and ideas on paper and trying to figure out how they will look without actually trying to cut and sew stuff. It's not working too well, but until I can afford to hire an assistant (ha, ha) this is how it's got to be.

The last couple of days have been beautiful. The weather has been warm and the sky has been clear and bright, so I've been outside a lot. But of course, it's suppose to start raining on Friday, so that will put an end to that. Tomorrow is suppose to be beautiful, and I think I'm going to take the camera and go for a nice, long walk. Who knows what I may find??

I'm really looking forward to this weekend. I'm going to be spending time with someone that I find very interesting, and possibly even get to go hear some Bluegrass music. Even if I don't get to go to the Bluegrass thing, I'm sure this weekend will be amazing. Anyway, I won't be posting too awful much this weekend, but I'll let y'all know I'm still out here somewhere.

Here are a few photos that I've played around with. Nothing fancy, but I thought with Halloween on it's way, these might be appreciated. These are pictures of the old Calhoun County High School. The last few are the ones I've altered. Let me know what you think.

Enjoy Life y'all!!

Monday, October 19, 2009

Good morning world!!

Good morning!!  It's a balmy 32 degrees in Ole Calhoun County this morning.  The humidity is 84% and it is a crisp, bright morning that promises a bright, sunny (although NOT warm) day.  The forecast calls for a high of 58 today, with a low of 35 tonight. 

I'm just sitting here, drinking a second cup of tea and reading through some emails before getting busy doing all the stuff I should have done this weekend, but didn't.

One of the things I should have done was upload more of my pictures.  I have over a thousand on this computer and it's starting to slow things down.  So today, while I'm dusting, washing and cleaning, my old computer will be uploading pictures to various albums on Snapfish.  (yes, I'll post a link if you want to see.)

While browsing through the pictures I found a few more that I really like.  As you know, I find ordinary things to be awe-inspiring, so some of you won't "get" these photos, but I know that some of you will.  For those of you that don't "get" them, it will just be more proof that I'm as strange as you originally thought, which is okay because I tend to agree with you on that.

Here we go:

As you can see, I played around with a few of these pictures.  I love using Paint Shop Pro and Photoshop to enhance, age and/or alter photos.  I also love photos of tree lined roads, old buildings, gravestones, and things that are out of place (by that I mean a wash-tub in the woods with greenery growing in it, or a plastic chair sitting in the middle of an over-grown that photos below)

If the "out of place" things are usable, and the landowner doesn't mind, I have been known to take them and "re-use" them.  If they are natural items, i.e. metals, wood etc, I usually leave them to nature.

Anyway.....I think I'm going to go over to the CCCOA for lunch today.  For those of you who are scratching your heads, it's the Calhoun County Council On Aging.  They're having sloppy joes today and I LOVE sloppy joes!!

Have a wonderful day!!


Good Night All

Well, it's just after 2 a.m. and I'm just now heading to bed.  I guess that's not all that unusual for me, I seem to need less and less sleep as I get older, but tonight I'm going to bed with a smile on my face and looking forward to tomorrow.

Isn't it amazing the way a simple phone call can affect a person? 

Blessings all!

Sunday, October 18, 2009

An explaination

A while back I wrote a post on heartbreak.  I have had some questions about the meaning of that post from people that know me personally and who were confused as to what I meant.  So, now I'm going to explain.

As I re-read that post, I realize that it sounds as though I am speaking of a lover, and perhaps in a way I was.  But the original intent was aimed more at verbalizing what I was feeling about a betrayal that goes deeper than that.  I was trying to draw a parallel between romantic, lover, wife/husband, partner love and other types of love, and how the pain of loving someone, be it as a friend or a lover, can be devastating.

I was in a relationship.  It was a strange and twisted relationship which I still don't understand.  I love this person, not as one loves a "boyfriend" or whatever, but as one loves someone that has been in their life for years and years.  This is a person in whom I had trust, I had faith that he would do the right thing, that he would try to be the best person he could be.  I stood up for him against people who spoke badly about him, I believed him when he explained the "situation" in which he had put himself.  He helped me out when he could and I did the same for him.  

But, this man led me to believe something that isn't and has not EVER been true.  He betrayed not only my trust, but my faith that he was trying to be a better person, my belief that he was not what others said he was.   The complex "love" I felt for him meant nothing more than allowing myself to be blinded to reality.

This isn't the first time I have loved someone, both female and male, who has used my feelings about them against me.  It seems as though I never learn, and that is why I said that I wish I could go to sleep and wake up not feeling love.

If I led anyone to believe that I was involved with this man in a "romantic" relationship, I apologize.  It was merely a convenient relationship.  More convenient for him than it was for me, for I am the one that has to live with the fact that I allowed someone to blind me to the truth, and to use my faith in them against me. 

When I was speaking of the "romantic" heart, I was trying to get work out how I was feeling, I was trying to "put a square peg in a round hole" so to speak.  To me romance is something that is honest, it is true and it is a unique gesture between two people who have MUTUAL feeling for one another.  Romance can't be based on lies, it can't be based on deceit.  Lies are not only words, a person can lie in actions as well, as was the situation that prompted me to write.  When I said that the "romantic" heart can become a rock that lies in the throat and threatens to cut off life giving oxygen, I was angry, I had been misled.  I now realize that when one loves another, either as a friend, a relative, or a lover, that it is merely the act of loving which can leave one open for that "rock in the throat", it has nothing to do with romance.

I hope I have cleared up the questions some of you had.  I hope that I haven't misled you as I myself have been misled.

I want to assure all of you that this person is no longer in my life.  I will have to have contact with him in order to straightened out some things, and to gain possession of some items that belong to me that are stored on his property, but once that is done, there will never again be contact.  I can't allow it, I will not allow it.

I want to assure all of you that I am damaged from this, yes, but I am a strong woman and I have spent time figuring out why I so blindly believed and was so easily led.  And I am working on changing that aspect of myself.

I won't allow this experience to change who I am.  I won't allow it to harden my heart to relationships, be they of the "romantic" kind or be they deep, lasting friendships.  To do so would be allowing this person to continue to inflect pain and inspire doubt.  I refuse to do that.  I have learned a lesson here, and that lesson is that everyone makes mistakes, everyone does things that they should be ashamed of.  The ones that continue to make the same mistakes over and over, to continue to do shameful things and never have shame for doing so, the ones who purposely hurts another, those people are the ones who are suffering, they are suffering in ways that I can never understand.  But I won't allow them to make me suffer.

I still have that same true, loving, faithful soul, and I still have that soppy romantic heart.  I still tend to find idealism and a desire for adventure (of many sorts) in every waking moment.  I am still fanciful, and in some ways impractical.  I still believe in LOVE, all types of love.  I suppose I am a ROMANTIC in almost every sense of the word.

I apologize once again if I caused any of you stress with the previous post.  That was never my intent.  And I want to assure you that I am still here, I am doing okay.  I am even beginning to not doubt my own judgement, and to believe that everything will work out the way it should.

I want to thank those of you that showed concern.  Thank you for the Emails and the phone calls.  I'm not depressed, I'm a little down and I am disappointed in myself.  But I AM OKAY!

Blessings all!!

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Sorry it's been so long.....

Sorry it's been so long.  Things haven't been very easy these last few days, so I just haven't felt like posting anything.  But.....I'm getting over it and I'm moving on to brighter days!!

Speaking of brighter days, it's raining (again).  Tomorrow is the first day of bow season for deer, and I've decided that this year I'm routing for the deer! (Not that I don't like venison from time to time, but hey, I can do without it)  Hopefully the "hunters" that are out (notice the quotes?  They are suppose to let you know that I'm not talking about the folks that go out and actually shoot a deer with a bow, I'm talking about the ones that shoot a deer with a rifle and then stick an arrow in the wound) will get soaking wet and the deer will be hiding in the brush laughing their little deer laughter. (Do deer laugh?  I know they snort, but do they laugh as well......hmmmmm, going to have to ask one sometime.)

Anyway, I took a short trip to Summersville the other day.  It was raining then as well.  I did get a few pictures, but I don't think they are that good.  I'm not going to go into details of the trip, it was a waste and it angers me beyond belief, but I will post some of the pictures.  

Here ya go!

Anyway, even with the rain it was beautiful up there.  I would like to go back before the leaves are all gone, but I doubt that will happen, not having a vehicle sucks.  But, even if I don't get to go I'll still have the photos.....I don't want the memories, or the company that I kept when I was there......the trip was ruined for me, except for a few pictures. 

Enough of that crap!!  I've been trying to get some stuff done around here.  I still have boxes that aren't unpacked, basically I don't have room to put the stuff, I need several book shelves and maybe a cabinet of some type.  But I'll get something figured out.  I'm planning on working on the "office" (dining room that I'm using for an office/craft room) tomorrow before the WV game. (Yes, I AM going to watch it.  I usually do.)

My computer is running pretty slowly these days.  Must be the thousand or so pictures that are on here.  I'm going to burn them to disk and clean the hard drive, so I'll be posting all types of stuff in the next few days.

Here are a few pictures that I forgot about.  They are some of my favorites!

Okay, kiddies!  I'm going to take my old, tired butt to bed.  Have a good night (or day, depending on when you're reading this) and remember: You can't have a rainbow without a little rain!!


Sunday, October 11, 2009

Things I love.....

This is going to be a long rambling post, so if you're not feeling it, just look at the photos and leave me a comment. If you want to hear the crazy woman in West Virginia talk about things that probably don't interest you, grab a cup of coffee or tea or whatever, sit down and read, it's going to be a good one!!

I've always know that I love music, all kinds of music. I have every thing from opera to bluegrass, pop to rap, blues to gospel. I just love music!! I love photography as well. I'm just getting into it hot and heavy lately, but I love it just the same.

So, when I get the opportunity to combine the two, well, basically I'm in "tall grass" as my Pap used to say. Living in West Virginia, I usually get several opportunities a week to go somewhere and listen to Bluegrass/Country music. I don't go every week, but I am making a habit of going to the Lion's Club on the second Saturday of the month.

This Saturday was bittersweet for me. My youngest son, Will (the musician), married his lovely girlfriend, Ashley, today in Delphos Ohio. I didn't have any way to get there, I don't have a car and have a very limited income, so I have been down all day. I feel so guilty that I wasn't here, although my son says it's okay and not to worry about it (I know he's just saying that to make me feel better.....I'm his mother, I know when he's lying) today was still a tough day. So, I decided to go to the sing at the Lion's club.

When we first got there I went in for a few moments and they went back outside. My friend David was outside and there were several pickers out there as well. One of them, Bill, was plucking around on a mandolin, and the only thing that I could think of was my son.  I didn't know if I could stay to watch the rest of the groups or not.  I was almost in tears and, being who I am, I didn't want anyone to know.

So, as usual, I hid behind my camera.  (maybe that's why I love photography so much, I can be in the center of whatever is going on, yet be unseen....hmmmmm, maybe I should ask some therapist or something, ya think?)  So, here are the pictures of my Saturday night trying to keep it together.

This is Dave.  He and his wife Esther are two of the best people I've ever met!

This is Bill.  He's a pretty good picker.  He says Dave taught him the mandolin.

Here are Dave, Bill and on the right Art.  Dave loves listening to them.

This is Esther, David's wife with the best looking "man" in the place.  In this picture it's hard to tell which one of them is the most ornery....but I'll tel ya.... it's Esther!

That's Dave's sister, Ruth, on the right.

I was inside for a while, and then back outside, then back in.  I almost wore out the hinges on the door.  I couldn't sit still for too long, but I tried to get some pictures (I got quite a few).  One of the times I was outside, I jumped up and walked along the bench seats there....Esther though something was wrong, but it was just the sun on the clouds.

There were singers, pickers, banjo players, and fiddlers.  It was a good evening.  Here are just some random pictures.

All in all, it was a good evening.  We left before the "jam" session, but Esther, David and I were all tired.  They brought me home and then headed off toward their own home.  I stood and watched them drive away, telling them to be careful of the deer and feeling truly thankful that I have two such wonderful people in my life.

When I came inside I was greeted by the usual chorus of yips, barks, meows and purrs.  Everyone seemed happy that I was home......everyone, that is, with the exception of Pattywack.  He was laying on the back of the chair and slowly turned to look at me as though I were an intruder.  Then he turned back to gaze at himself in the mirror.  (I was given several mirrors and I'm in the process of re-doing one of the and have it stored behind the chair in the living room so it isn't in the way and is in no danger of being broken,)  Anyway, this is what my dear, loving little fur demon looked like as he lounged on the chair.

Notice the most interesting thing (to him) is his own reflection.  This conceited little jerk laid there, gazing at himself, for almost an half of a hour.

He finally, after 10 minutes of "who loves you" (at this point, NOT me), "aren't you a pretty kitty" (he obviously thought so) and "awwww" (this was only to cover the gagging sound I was making by then) he lowered himself to look at the camera.  Notice how smug he looks.

Anyway, I finally got a picture of the most conceited cat in history, let the doggies out, gave everyone treats (would you believe the great conceited one expected me to CARRY his treat to him??  Boy, was he disappointed.  The dog ended up with it.) and managed to get into my pj's.  Then I sat down and begin to upload the many pictures that I had taken tonight.  I sent a few to Esther and uploaded the rest.  

So that's about it for me.

How was you're night?

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Sort of an update

Hey all.

As you may have noticed, the last few days have been rough on me.  I've been going through something that I would just as soon not discuss, so please forgive me for that.

Anyway, I've been trying to find some peace in the everyday things in life, so I've done some wondering (as usual) and I've found some interesting subjects to photograph.  Please indulge me while I post some of the more interesting(moving) photos.

As you all know by now, I find comfort and tranquility in cemeteries.  I also find a strange sort of excitement as I walk among the gravestones, it is a feeling that I find hard to describe.  It's as though I am connecting with the past each time I read a name or a date, and when I look at the verses or the pictures that are engraved in the stones, I realize that I am not just among the dead, I am in the midst of people who were loved, who lived and died and were sorely missed.

Below are a few pictures I snapped on an outing with my neighbor on Thursday.  We went to several old cemeteries, and I enjoyed every moment.

This is a photo of the hills beyond St. Paul's cemetery.  The colors are just beginning to come out, and it looked so peaceful.  This photo effects me because to me it represents change, the leaves are changing from the healthy greens that grace our wonderful hills all summer to the golds, reds and oranges that signal a time of rest and renewal is heading our way.  The fact that I have the graves in the foreground says (to me) that none shall escape that final change from life to death to life again.

This is a carving that graces a child's headstone.  When I first saw this one, I walked past it because it didn't really "do" anything for me.  But as I walked through the rest of the grave sites, I kept thinking about this stone.  The carving is of a child picking out toys from a toy chest, in this case it represents a child that is no longer among us in this realm.  The thought that this child (and all children) continue to "be" children after they pass through the veil of death is a thought that I shall forever hold in my heart.  I lost a grandson a few years back, and I am now able to think of him not just as my dead grandson, but as a child playing with his toys in a place that is better than this one, I always knew he was somewhere better, somewhere safer than the place into which he was born.  This stone reminded me he is in a place where he can safely play with the toys the Creator has placed there for him.

This photo was taken at Mt. Olive cemetery.  It is a photo of an angel standing watch over a grave that has no marker.  At first I thought the grave stone had fallen over or been damaged, but as I looked around, I realized that I was in the oldest part of the cemetery.  Many of the graves here have no names carved in stone, no beautifully engraved stones with verses meant to bring a tear to the eye.  These resting places are marked with simple field stones.  It seems as though there wasn't time to carve a stone with which to mark the graves, it seems as though the folks left behind knew that they would remember who laid where, when they died and what age they where when they passed over.  Maybe it was during a time of great sickness and the living demanded the time that would be used to mark these graves, or maybe it was a raid that took the lives of those that lay here.  We'll never know for sure.  But the angel, she stands there silently watching over those long forgotten graves, remembering for those of us who have forgotten, praying for those without names.

Here is a view of some of the older graves that stand silently on the hillside. These are the graves that the angel (above) watch over. I stood there in silence wondering who these people were, when they had lived and what caused thier deaths. It almost seemed fitting that in a land where the first settlers faced dangers unknown to us now, where survival depended upon strength, hard work and more than a little luck, where the beauty and peacefulness of the mountains can work wonders on a damaged soul, here would rest the men and women of the frontier, silent and forgotten to all but the mountains that surround them.

This tombstone isn't in a cemetery.  It sits along side the road, in a nicely kept spot where the sun shines and the hills hold back the wind.  It's a stone marking the resting place of a race horse.  No one I've talked to seems to know how she came to rest here, or why someone would go to all the trouble to bury a horse and order a stone for her.  I think I know.  I am a pet owner, no let me rephrase that, I share my home with little furry creatures whom I love.  I am responsible for them, but I no more "own" them than the slave owners "owned" the human chattel they bought and sold so many years ago.  If I were able, each and every one of my pets would have a beautiful place in which their mortal remains would rest.  I would mark their passing in the same way as this person marked the passing of this horse.  I would leave a stone to show the world that my pet, my friend, wasn't just some animal to be cast off and forgotten, but a living creature to be honored and remembered.  I hope Dolly is happy in the Summerlands.

Yesterday, Friday, it rained in the morning.  Then the rain stopped and the sky cleared for a time.  I decided to take a walk, never straying far from my home in case the rain decided to return. (And believe me, return it did!)  I took a few pictures of things that inspired me, why they inspire me I don't know, but they do.  Here are those pictures.

I found these odd looking things on a vine in the woods behind my house.  I'm not sure what they are, but I found them to be interesting.  To me they look like strange bugs or perhaps the wild hair of the mountain men that once roamed these hills.  Or maybe some exotic flower that found it's way to Calhoun County West Virginia by mistake and took root to flourish in the rich soil.  I don't know.  What about you?  What do they look like to you?  

Pretty simple looking pictures isn't it?  Well, it's the knot on a fallen tree that rest in the edge of the woods.  It doesn't look near as interesting in this picture as it does in real life, but I still find it a simple inspiration, the way the colors vary slightly, the grain of the wood, the way the fallen leaves lay in the crook of the knot.  (I told you I was odd.)

Coming back to the house I found one standing goldenrod.  The rest have dried up and fallen over.  This one was still standing proud and blooming with the golden color that gives it it's name.  If you look closely you'll see several yellow jackets.  They are busy gathering the last of the pollen from the flowers that are left.  I know it's getting close to winter because it was chilly and still these industrious inscets were out there working, abet a bit slowly, taking no care of the chill or the wind.  We could all learn a lesson from this.  If we don't put away for the cold and barren parts of life we will not make it through to the sunny, warm days.

The sky began growing dark and the clouds were rolling in.  I stood still and listened, in the distance I heard the rumble of thunder, a warning of what was to come.  I ran to the house and a very few seconds later the storm was upon us!! (The fact that I was outside during a storm is a monumental feat!  I am TERRIFIED of storms, but I tried my best)

The rain came down in sheets, cold and hard.  It sounded like the drums of a marching band as it rapped against the tin roof of my little house.  

The road was a small river, running swift and silently, carrying along the leaves and twigs that the wind had torn from the surrounding trees.

And then suddenly, it was over. Only a few drops fell to the ground to join their brethern in a journey through the storm drains to the river and then on to places that will remain unknown to human-kind.  The storm that drenched the ground, flooded the streets, tore leaves from the trees and beat a tempo on the tin roof that sounded like a thousand war drums, left me feeling alive.  As the storm died, so my soul began to stir.

And I let it pass without saying a word of thanks.  That is my pride and that is my shame.

Blessing all.