Thursday, May 28, 2009

The Birds.....

Birds are winged, bipedal, warm-blooded, vertebrate animals that lay eggs. There are around 10,000 living species.

   9,999 of them live at my house.

   And why not? It’s home sweet home around here for our fair feathered friends, thanks to Mr. Downeastdoingstuff.

   Take a glimpse of the structures he provides for them...yes....all out in my yard. sigh. 

   (just scroll quickly to get a  sense of how many there are...)

And, yes, birds do actually nest in most of them
We have happy cats.

“Fish got to swim, birds got to fly, I got to love one man till i die. Can’t help lovin’ dat man of mine.”

Oscar Hammerstein II from ‘Showboat’.

(Wonder why he’s got a blog where he’s called Birdman?) 


NOW,  you have to watch this sweet, sweet animated Pixar short....
(If the video doesn't work, go here: Bird Clip )

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Happy Memorial Day Weekend...

People have different ways to display the flag. Here is a painted version on a wall of a structure in the Biddeford Pool area. Not quite sure exactly what the building is, sort of a garage and a couple of wings. Nevertheless, the owner chooses to show his/her patriotic side. Appropriate, this weekend, to remember all the men and women who have given their lives for our country.
Hope you have a lovely weekend.

Update: This morning, Mr. Downeastdoingstuff put this photo on HIS blog as well. Ahem. (We were driving around together taking photos one fine day...)
Anyway, you can see the entire building on his blog....interesting architecture.  Symmetrical anyway.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009


A Blacksmith....what exactly is it??

BLACK: The color of objects that do not emit or reflect light in any part of the visible spectrum
huh??    Translation: the bottom of my son's socks.

SMITH: A worker in metal. Or an alias assumed by someone on the lam. No translation necessary.

So a blacksmith would be someone working on my son's socks....that would be me.

There are coppersmiths, goldsmiths, silversmiths and probably other smiths, too.
Pretty cool, no?

Years ago, I took a couple of courses in blacksmithing. The real thing. Not Junior's socks.
(I'm still working on those...)

I LOVED IT !! It was right up my alley. One thing, I'm always cold, so standing by a fire was so perfect for me.  Secondly, holy smokes, you could actually change the shape of a big honking piece of metal!
And you could do this without backing into anything in the parking lot !!!!!

Of course, I was just about the only female in both of these classes. I don't really know why, but I didn't care. I was happy warming my fingers and thinking about how I should have brought marshmallows . Maybe some chocolate bars and graham crackers. A little glass of Merlot to sip by a crackling fire........

First we watched the demo....looked as easy as working with Playdo. 
Make the metal soft by sticking it into a 4 million degree fire until it turns red hot, and then smash it to smithereens with a hammer on an ANVIL until you get the shape you want. 

On an  A N V I L !!!!!!!

An Anvil: The thing that the Roadrunner continually dropped onto Wile E. Coyote's head from a 100 foot cliff.

The weird shape of the anvil is actually that way on purpose. It allows you to bend the metal into different shapes. For some reason, putting something that is red hot 1,000 degrees on it's surface and then pounding on it has no effect on that darn anvil. It seems to be impervious to all that abuse.
But the iron stick you work with, well, THAT can be twisted, curved, flattened and bent like a pipe cleaner. No prob.

So I made things. I made a poker for our woodstove, some hooks and a swivel plant hanger, that I designed.
It was like magic......

Here is the poker.....

We've been using it for over 15 years and it hasn't changed shape or bent at all.

Here's a close up of the end of the handle part. I flattened it and made it into a leaf shape, then twisted and bent it.

Close up of a few of the twists...

The working end of the poker...

I couldn't find any of the hooks I made, but here is the plant hanger. 
The hook can turn in it's holder so that I could turn the plant to face the sun.
Hmmm, that sure looks like a sharp tip, doesn't it ?

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Happy Mother's Day aka My Sunday picture...

THIS is the reason I can celebrate Mother's Day. Twenty two years ago this sweet angel came into the world. On the first full day of his life, his dad took this photo. He sure looked happy to be here... I know we were !

Periodically I would do a watercolor of him to hang over the mantle in his bedroom. Sometimes he would know I was painting it, but most often I would just change the picture in the frame and when he would go up to his room, a new painting would be there. I wish I had done more of are the ones I did.
"Now can I eat this blue donut??"

"yummy...these things are messy and they leak, but, boy, are they good!!"

"I want to be an artist,too, mom! Jackson Pollock, eat your heart out!"
(FYI... he has turned out to be a fabulous, creative artist. He just amazes me.!)

"Here, dad, FETCH!"

"Mom always tells me to stop and smell the roses."
(Ok, ok, we know it's a tulip.)

"My first kitty, the Wiz."

Like us, he just loves his pussy cats.

"Don't bother me...."
This painting is still on the wall in his room and the lighting isn't good and there are reflections in the glass, but you get the idea.  Sunning on a beach in Haiti...part of a cruise.

Here are most of them together.....That's my boy, it's been a wonderful  22 years !!

Happy Mother's Day to all the moms out there. I hope you all have a wonderful day.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Crime wave.....

  We have a local, community newspaper that is free for the taking in various town stores. Now, remember, I live in a rural Maine community, within driving distance of a good size city.
   This tabloid has a Police Blotter section....keeps us abreast of all the criminal activity besmirching our neighborhood.
   Here are some examples....all true, word for word.

1. Someone reported that their child was at the library and one of their child's friends set his hair on fire.         (I'm not sure 'who's' hair actually was ablaze???)

2. Someone wanted to speak to an officer regarding the Do Not Enter sign and their customers entering the wrong way. 

3. Someone called to report that they had locked their drunken spouse in their vehicle.
(ummm...if you're INSIDE the car, can't you get out by unlocking the door??) 

4. Someone reported strange cars going down their dead end road in the middle of the night and not coming back out.      (Must be quite a collection of autos in there somewhere !)

5. Someone reported that a subject, who lives across the street from the cemetery, allows their dog to go into the cemetery each morning to do his 'business'.

6. Someone reported an abandoned motor vehicle. Subject was parked there as they had cell reception and were waiting for a phone call.

7. A caller reported a car idling at a local business. The car belonged to the owner of the business.


8. A 17 year old male was found in an elementary school flushing all the toilets !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Lock your doors, pull your shades and carry mace. It's a crime laden community.