About Me

My photo
Recent retiree--35 year's experience teaching reading, English, adult basic education and volunteer leadership skills. Started this blog to exchange ideas and commentary with friends and others having an interest in joining the discussions. Greatest life accomplishments include: 1.organized my 3rd grade class to check out library books for me to get around librarian's weekly limit--Amazon.com, the Mullins Elementary 3rd Grade Class of 1956 is still waiting for "thank you" notes; 2. volunteered in the Peace Corps, island of St. Kitts, West Indies; 3.taught adults to read, earn their GEDs., and speak English as a second language; 4. bought a border collie puppy for $6, got evicted rather than give him up, and began a life-long love affair with all things "Dog"; 5. joined a physical fitness boot camp in my mid-50s--don't mess with someone who's been doing regulation pushups in wet grass at 5:30 a.m.; 6. walked across Northern England with best friend Sally--over 80 miles from the Irish to North Seas; and 7. travelled to many foreign countries for pleasure and work.

Friday, August 23, 2013

Friday Fences - for the Birds

Still more fences from the Historic Garden Tour of Old Louisville--Garden 14 made a special effort to welcome the birds. Here are a few closeups of the different bird houses and fence decorations. (click on the collages to enlarge)

Linking to Friday Fences at Life According to Jan and Jer . Wish me luck this weekend--installing a new computer(or rather the resident Geek Squad is) and switching to Windows 8 and touchscreen. It's a brave new world and I sure hope the learning curve is not too steep for me to climb!

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Wild Bird Wednesday - Chick ID

This little charmer visited the bird buffet for the first time over the weekend. Now those of you who check out my WBW posts know that I'm often wrong about bird IDs, but I'm pretty sure that this cutie is a Carolina Chickadee.

I've only recently become interested in learning about birds, photographing them, and attracting to my yard. My bird ID skills were almost nil except for robins, cardinals, and blue jays! :-) So, I recently ordered several books on Kentucky birds which should up my ID scores considerably. Like using each of them for different reasons--drawings as opposed to photos, different ways to ID, etc. Here's a sampling of how the books are organized:

Comparing the chickadee entries in the three guides, I went with Carolina over Black-capped because his markings were black all the way down neck instead of "capped". Here are a few more shots just because they're so dang cute!

Now, despite all my studying, if I got this "chick ID" wrong, don't hesitate to correct me. I won't be offended at all since I'm just beginning birder education! :-)

Linking to Wild Bird Wednesday .

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Friday Fences - Late Summer

(Click on photos to enlarge.)

Late summer, you say? Yes, definitely for someone who is eager for fall. Spotted this fence and plant filled yard in Norton Commons, a "boutique community" outside Louisville and it just had the feel of summer's ending.

Linking to Friday Fences at Life According to Jan and Jer .

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Wild Bird Wednesday - Blue Boy

(click on collage/photo to enlarge)

This blue boy was a first sighting for me yesterday on the deck railing where I scatter birdseed and peanuts daily. I'm thinking this is a juvenile blue jay because the adult jays are my best customers. They love those peanuts! Two things make me doubt my ID -- the missing black markings on throat and his tail seems rather long. Maybe he will develop the black markings and grow into his tail as he gets older? Regardless of his ID, loved that little topknot, round babyish head, and fluffy body.

Linking to Wild Bird Wednesday .

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Friday Fences - Memory Garden

An ornate wrought iron fence surrounds a small, intimate garden planted in memory of members of the Louisville Women's Club for their work on behalf of the community. This memory garden was featured on the recent Old Louisville Garden Tour.

In a carriage house attached to the garden, the Club runs Carriage Trade where fine home furnishing, jewelry, and clothing can be purchased. Proceeds of the sales are used for annual projects. The red fleur de lis napkin weight and three Star of David vases caught my eye. As did the cast iron dog profile over the carriage house door!

Linking to Friday Fences at Life According to Jan and Jer .

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Wild Bird Wednesday - the Acrobat

A red-bellied woodpecker that hangs out--literally--in a tree in the front yard. He even lit on the step railing to check out the bird buffet, but I was too slow in grabbing the camera.

Linking to Wild Bird Wednesday .

Sunday, August 4, 2013

InSPIREd Sunday & Mosaic Monday - Tuscan Hilltowns and Countryside

This is Pienza, a small walled hilltown built in the mid-1400s in the Tuscany region of Italy. In this photo you can see the white stone belltower and spire of the Pienza Cathedral rising up above the town. Photos used in this post are from a 2000 gardening tour of Tuscany. Pienza was our base location for the tour. Click on the mosaics to enlarge for better views.

From the left: side garden of Pienza Cathedral, the cathedral altar, flowers decorating the baptismal font where we saw a baby being christened on the day we toured,and the sandstone arches of Hotel Relais which was once a monastery and our base for the tour.

Pienza is such a small town that very little car traffic is allowed on the narrow stone and cobbled streets. Everywhere you walked the walls were decorated with flowers and live greenery:

On this tour we not only visited some fabulous gardens, we also traveled many miles each day through the Italian countryside and saw scenes for which Tuscany is known. First photo is a tour bus shot of the sheep whose milk is prized for making the classic Italian pecorino cheese--nice of them to be grazing in a field of wild poppies! In the last collage clockwise: 1. skinny cypress trees accent the hillside looking down into a valley, 2. fava beans growing in some of the reddest soil you've ever seen 3. an olive grove for the famous Italian olive oil, 4. wild poppy fields as far as the eye could see.

Linking to InSPIREd Sunday and Mosaic Monday .

(Blogger trubble! Kind first commenters, TexWisGirl and Eileen, have given me the heads up that the text is not showing up in this post without highlighting it (??) I am getting the text as well as photos so don't know what the deal is EXCEPT that Blogger has been giving me trouble--freezing up, etc.--for this entire post. Sorry for the glitch--just enjoy the photos! Faye)