Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Christmas Tree Glow......

The decorations on my smallest tree are all small pieces too. The atmosphere with lights, tree, and Christmas colors blend into a great effect. When I saw all the smaller ornaments in the box, I did realize that they would be lost on a large tree and much larger ornaments. As time passes by, I may have to just put up smaller trees and I would be satisfied with that.

I remember when my mother was getting up there in years, she just didn't want to mess with a tree, I bought her a small tree and placed ornaments on it that were wired tight to the tree branches.  When she died, that tree was still decorated, sitting in the storage room. She did like having it and knew she didn't have to stress about something she couldn't really do anymore.

Monday, December 11, 2017

The Start of the Morning.......

One of my favorite mugs is needing to be refilled but not after I take the photo. Christmas decorations have worked their way into our living spaces.  We are not completely done with the decorating but it is close.  We have a village to unpack and place in some new location in the new place. The stairs are busy as I keep taking down empty boxes and bringing up the last of things for our holiday traditions.  I found a bag of pillows that only come out durning the winter season.

Sunday, December 10, 2017

Tree Number Three........

The tree with glass blown ornaments is up.  The tree has a double purpose this year as it sits in the spare bedroom in front of a double window.  It gives us a decoration for people to see from the outside and I don't have to place an outside tree for viewing. The tree is large and new and it gives me room to spread out the collection along with the bubble lights. The day light coming through the window gave me an unplanned sun glow effect.

Saturday, December 9, 2017

Moody Mood.......

A new ornament for this big tree is the one with the lace-like patterns.  We completed putting all the ornaments on our main tree Friday evening. I won't be surprised to find one more box of ornaments somewhere in the storage room as i don't think it seems to be overcrowded.  I do realize that it doesn't sit in a bay window anymore so we probably were able to decorate all the way around the tree this year. That would help to thin out the look of the tree.  Things seem busier than ever so getting shots of the whole tree will happen when I find the time.

Friday, December 8, 2017

One is a Start.......

The first one hung on my glass blown ornament tree. As you view the box below you can see I have many more to hang.

Thursday, December 7, 2017

Reflection of the Past......

The ornament isn't so old but I do remember the indent ornaments of the past. They would be for sale at some hardware store and in the most part survive the handling of years of use. This ornament didn't make the move for some reason. Moving itself explains why two of these took hard hits with pieces of them broken away but that doesn't keep me from displaying it. The boxes that they were in didn't really get dropped but packing boxes on top of others probably caused it.

The joy we will have is when things get done. I am moving slow and my wife is involved with a commission art work to get done before Christmas.  We installed a track lighting system last night during the night  news. We bought it in the afternoon and I wanted it up and running for her this morning.  I hope it improves her light in her studio.  She has lighting problems with a double window that puts out too much light and she really misses her north windows and skylights. Inspire of the,t the studio is better in the new house than in the old. In between all of that the decorations are being placed on trees a few at a time.

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

Toy Collage......

The toys are all now returned to the storeroom.  A few of them just stayed in the living room to remind us of the little one that played with them. The silver car was also a favorite for the older grandson but to the most part the blocks and circus animals were good fun for the youngest. Those blocks are a part of my antique toy collection that never made it into the official cupboard. The gloves on the blocks interlock with each other making the stack a stronger tower.

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

Nap Time.......

Baeney loves to take naps.  Especially after having a good meal. His laying by the vent is a subtle hint that we should still be air conditioning the house so he can get as cool as possible.  Our wood floors are cooler and he prefers to be somewhere in the dining room or kitchen when he sleeps. He does have difficulty getting up off this floor as it is too slick for his feet to grip.  He uses his front legs to pull himself up now.  We did put in a couple of smaller rugs in the kitchen area just for him to help him maneuver.

Monday, December 4, 2017

Medieval Lego Land.......

Our son and grandson were busy on the basement floor sorting the three castle sets made from lego. After a day on the floor, I suggested they use the new white table to set things up, for more sorting. These toys that were moved from the old place are now going home with the grandson.  My youngest son owned the sets and told me earlier in the year to make sure his nephews get these, if they wanted them.

Sunday, December 3, 2017


Christmas is official when a poinsettia enters the house. The colors of red are so pure with the contrasting green leaves.  I did see a poinsettia at a store where the leaves had been painted purple with glitter sprayed glue to it.  It just didn't seem like a true plant anymore when in was painted up so unnaturally.

Saturday, December 2, 2017

Vacant Dwelling.......Nest.

The foliage of the bradford pear is so thick in the summer that I could not see the nest.  I knew that a bird would hurriedly escape from my advancement below it. I never saw the bird and could only hear it when it flew away.  I am thinking it is a robin's nest but it doesn't appear to be so tightly created. I don't know if they reuse their nest but if they do, I will keep an eye out for it next spring.

Friday, December 1, 2017

Trumpeter Swans......

On a highway lake, made years ago when they turned 141 into a four lane highway, I saw birds.  I pulled over while driving home, to mess with the cell  phone and then I saw them. I couldn't believe that they were even on the water. I have never seen this kind of swan in Iowa ever in my lifetime. I had heard the Maquoketa, Iowa has swans on its lake and that they were there now. I am certain this pair with the three youngsters will not stick around.

The little pond has beavers on it also as the area is close to beaver creek just south of there.  I could see the other day that they were adding a lot more tree limbs to their home.

The pond is fished year round with ice fishermen put up tents to help keep them warm while fishing. Some locals must have stocked it with a good kind of fish.

Thursday, November 30, 2017

The Glow......

He has his time limited on the tablet as he would stay on it all day. He can watch movies on it though which really helps to kill time when riding in the car for six hours. We shared the movie "Rio" with him one afternoon on the tv screen and he really liked it. The music made him want to get up and dance, as the various songs were styled after that area of Brazil.

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Painted Sky......

The weather patterns this year are giving our state a lot of beautiful sunrises and striking sunsets. It is really gets cold in the night now and the warm up is slow in the day.

Tuesday, November 28, 2017

Retired For Now......

The boy that powers the train is gone.  It was a toy of our two boys years ago. The next generation has taken it out of moth balls so to speak and is putting on more miles on it.

Monday, November 27, 2017

Have a Hug.......

Our youngest grandson is at the age where hugs are essential.  These pictures of him with his dad best represent his personality.  He definitely can express himself when he faces disappointment but all in all he has such a gentle temperament. He gave his grandparents hugs often with great glee throughout his visit with us. Teddy is one year and a half in age and walking everywhere checking every door and drawer in the house.

Sunday, November 26, 2017

Down Under......

Barney had retreated to the safety by being under the dining room table. There was a lot of energetic feet running around and the table seemed to be the safest place to be. But never fear,  the younger grandson can also get under there to join him.

Saturday, November 25, 2017

Relax, We Are At Grandma's........

Visitors making themselves at home. They are a bundle of energy but they sure are good kids. They are having fun playing with their dad's ole toys.

Friday, November 24, 2017

Greenhouse Blooms......

We see these flowers used in restaurants in a single vase. Their shapes are such that they look like they are an artificial flower.  It is not, but I think it is a form of a lily flower that are sold in larger bouquets. I told my wife to pick out one while we were at the grocery store.  There were large batches of the bunch flowers.  It was deceiving as when we got home we realized that there were only five stems of a different flower in the bundle. They are still very nice but next time we may have to buy two of them to really get a full bouquet.

If you haven't noticed yet while viewing the photo, I turned the camera sideways to get a good shot of that particular kind of flower. I couldn't figure out at first what I was seeing then I realize it is a side view of the flowers. It is nice to have fresh flowers as the fall winds down and winter sets in on us.

One of my blogger friends says it is an alstroemeria, a Peruvian Lily. It is good to know. I assume that it is grown in greenhouses as our weather in North America probably isn't too kind to it. 

Thursday, November 23, 2017

Thanksgiving Morn.....

There is great color coming from the sun's rising in the East. Our view is a cold one as we are at 31 degrees F. The high for today will be 50 degrees F. which will make for a pleasant day for us. I noticed today that if I crop things just right I can project the image as a farm scene instead of suburbia.

Being that this whole area was a farm field of corn and soybeans 16 years ago, it could be a view from the farm.  There is an old house at the top of the hill which possibly could have been the original farmer's home. As a bird would fly east and south. it would run into the Des Moines River valley. The roads from here actually go down into that valley.

Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Burning Issues......

Turning more orange as it drops its leaves, the burning bush is giving us quite a show. I continue to be amazed that I had not been able to identify this bush until the fall season.  There are a lot of different uses for this shrub in our neighborhood.  Down the street three large burning bushes have been trimmed into large cylinder shapes. Again, I didn't recognize then as that variety until they started to turn their leaves.

As I take Barney outside four or five times a day I see the bush often. As a bonus photo today I want to show you what it looks like looking up our street. Our house sits at the turn in the road and then it goes straight up the hill heading northwest.

Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Oxalis Staying Warm....

It is a blurry photo but it is a great visual representation of green shapes with stems, enjoying the daylight inside the house.

Outside the window there is a lot of dismal brown of dead leaves and mulch. The rose bush that is very old with its history from our old place, has been planted against the fence.  The shadows of the maple tree blend in with all of the colors making the rosebush hard to see. The former owner has mulched the area with dead sticks. It is an unconventional kind of mulch and will be replaced with something else in the future as the decay.

Monday, November 20, 2017

B & W.......

I see the trend on Facebook is challenging one another to take black and white photos. Everyone just converts a color shot to b and w.  I thought the effect of this one really does create an eerie new world. It is a little warmer day today and I took a walk out to see what is left to do out there. I can see that the leaves will really mow up easily and that can be done later next week after they have truly dried out. The real Canada geese are all around us flying from corn field to cornfield. They also like soybeans and do try to glean anything that is left over on the ground.

Sunday, November 19, 2017

Kitchen Clutter.....

We moved away from an old home that had a large built-in buffet that held all our collectibles. A lot of our old things are very old and other things are really not so valuable.  As we move into a new home we are caught overloaded with things that we can't store inside of a cupboard. I am now on my third clutter filled display of things above the kitchen cupboards. The ceiling is a vaulted ceiling so there is  a lot of blank space above our cupboards.  They look ok, but the creator of these displays ,me, am already a little bothered by all of it.  By spring I can see that we will revisit this displaying of things.

Saturday, November 18, 2017

September Shots.....

Teddy's legs are a little short for this big wheel but he still likes sitting on it. These shots were buried in my files and this one was taken by our son in their front yard in Illinois.

AJ has grown up fast.  He is sitting along Lake Michigan, if I have my geography correct.  They were visiting a peninsula that is called Door County, Wisconsin. Yesterday's activities shut down my time to take new photos and I never did share these photos of our son back in September.

Friday, November 17, 2017

One Photo Today.....

So I have been getting confused. I am older so I need a keeper.  I shared one photo on this blog yesterday and then continued to do my Creative  Zone post on the end of it.  The one photo a day blog was filled with many photos and lots of words. Today I will stick with this just one photo.  I have been rearranging the art gallery display, already, and hung the blue painting above the arrangement on the bookshelf.  I thought it made a good still-life arrangement.  The wood top of the bookcase looks like it has a haze on it but that was dusted before I took the shot.

Thursday, November 16, 2017

Flashy Glass......

Old stuff, that apparently I moved so I would have something to photograph. The glass flue on the left is leftover from a discarded candle stand.  It won't fit the old glass lantern at right because the lamp is so old that it requires a different smaller sized flue. Old bottles can be placed in the trash without any lost to this civilization;s history but one always needs to have an old one hundred year old egg crate with lid to use to put our eggs into from the chickens we don't own.

I snapped this shot to share a story about a stick.  It has been quite a few years ago when this young girl gave me the multicolored, painted branch.  It looked like it had a head on it so she painted a beak and gave it some eyes.  She was a sweet girl that lived up the street and she had decided to give out gifts for Christmas to the special people in her life. That stick could have just as well been from an Egyptian tomb, with the quality of its creation and the symbolism that she saw in the stick.  Sometimes kids do things for their teachers that make them feel special.  She really admired her work of art and I still do today. The little girl was from a broken marriage, living with her dad, and they moved away after a couple of years in our school district. I will keep the stick around to remind me of why people create.

I talked about dividing and overgrown sansivera plant for years. When I finally did so earlier this summer, I put three of them in my antique flower pots. It is like an artistic statement to put the pots in a row and the plants makes it a family. They will be placed into a window soon. The junk on the table behind them are compliments of me. I need to put some more things away and clear that art stand.

We did have frost on the pumpkins last night. Everything was coated with frost and it all did shine in the sunshine this morning. Our pumpkins don't seem to be far enough away from the house to actually freeze. I did notice this morning that my invading vines in the back are being effected by the freezing weather.

My featured sunrise today is actually the reflection of the sky on the front of the house.  The sun comes up behind that end of the house.  The sky opposite the sunrise was showing colors of pink and lavender this morning but I couldn't get a shot. There were more houses in the shot that actual sky as we live down the hill half way.

It is a hodgepodge day for my posting today.  I am showing the clump birch across the street. The house is for sale as the young couple with one small child moved away all in one weekend.  He was the one that took the child to daycare in the morning. They had two beautiful retrievers the same color of Barney but the hair was longer. I never met them and they flew three flags on their front porch telling me they were patriotic and fans of Iowa State University.

The tree would be a bonus for me for this property but the front yard is all very difficult to mow. It was created with a sharp incline from the house to the street with very little walking area across the front of the house. When he would mow it he had to push the mower up and  back it down to get it accomplished. The backyard is a sharp incline down, steep drop from front yard to back into a valley. They did a creative job to get the house into that row across the street. It looks good but is a very impractical lot. I like having the birch to watch as we can see it go through the seasons just like the one at our old house. I do see parts of bark that have blown into our yard from time to time.

I noticed that I have a dog's tail in my shot.  I didn't see that until I got down to the bottom of the photo. I get some interesting photos with a dog attached to me while snapping shots.

It is a spontaneous kind of day today.  I have chores, projects and maybe some shopping in my future.  Thanks for stopping by today.

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Morning Skies........

The sun is coming up and the reflections keep changing the clouds colors. The wind is blowing and the clouds are moving around continually.

A few minutes later the view turned to this as the sun is almost up over the horizon. My tree with a dead limb now looks like it has all dead limbs.

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Awkward Angle.......

As I start work on another project I found I could catch some shots of it.  It is an old piano stool. The ones where the seat can be raised by turning the seat.  The claw feet seem to be deteriorated to a rough surface not allowing me to see any detail on them. I will try brass cleaner on them but I don't things will turn out very well.   The glass ball is held in the claw by something but I don't know what.

I didn't get a shot of it standing up with its seat inserted down the base.  I know the stool is over 40 years old as that is how long that I have had it.  I am being foolish as it has to be twice that age as it was gifted to me from the same house that I acquired the library table.  My friend said her mother had them in about every room of the house and wanted me to take one away for her. I am not sure that I will restore it to a wood finish. The wood is in pretty bad shape.  I will share photos of it again as I decide and work on its final finish.

Monday, November 13, 2017

Sunday, November 12, 2017

Patterns in the Sky.......

As the temperatures drastically move up and down so do the cloud formations keep changing. We have rain moving through this morning so no real clouds formations exist except solid gray. The photo is from Saturday.