Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Small Wonder

the Day After Christmas 09

Lately I've been increasingly drawn to the blurred boundaries between painting and photography. So far, light, motion and dreaded noise have been my mainstay of tools in an effort to produce an atmosphere...of something ineffable in the images.

A wonderful new macro lens was under the tree this year and I'm very excited about the possibilities! The sun was shining brightly the day after our Christmas snowfall. I dodged icy clumps dropping from the trees while protecting my new treasure and discovering a glittering world of small wonders. Click on the photos to view in a larger size and to see the layered tones and shapes.

The Day After Christmas 08

The Day After Christmas 07

The Day After Christmas 05

The Day After Christmas 04

The Day After Christmas 03

The Day After Christmas 02

The best gift that wasn't beneath the Christmas tree arrived on this day a number of years ago. She arrived four days late, howling and with a mop of dark hair. Hands and feet impossibly tiny. My small wonder. If you have a moment, stop by JCB and wish her a happy birthday. XO to you, Janet.

Monday, December 26, 2011

Boxing Day

Boxing Day

Cooper! Our first rate little box shredder and trash compacter. The gentleman always said that was part of the little dog's skill set!

Friday, December 23, 2011

Merry Christmas ~ Happy Holidays

Merry Christmas ~ Happy Holidays

It is snowing outside and my corner of Maine is still and quiet. Peace on earth.

Paper Heart

Paper Heart

White On White

White on white

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Longest Night


The sun sets in Maine at 3:58 tonight...a long night. Safe travels to JCB and her gentleman!

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Full Moon Supper ~ December

December Full Moon Supper

Salt Water Farm, Lincolnville, Maine.



A Taste of ~ Alsatian Tarte, Sweet Onions, Pecorino, Anchovies, Thyme


First ~ Buttercup Squash Soup, Cauliflower, Crisp Shallots

Second ~ Baby Winter Greens, Apples, Bacon, Chestnut Vinaigrette

Maine ~ Commonwealth Farm Ducks, Turnips, Aroostook Potatoes, Cider

To Finish ~ Pear Galette, Bourbon Whipped Cream


Moonlight on Penobscot Bay lights our way home.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Pine Sap and Omega Bursts


Our Christmas ritual begins with the wreath on the door. Women usually make them, snipping the brush and wiring the pieces to round frames of all sizes. The wreaths are lush, thick, fragrant and very fresh...and quite a few remain on the doors (still green!) until Easter! When I bought mine, the woman apologized for the condition of her hands. I said she should be proud, the wreaths are beautiful and it wouldn't be Christmas without them. I asked if I could photograph her hands for my blog to honor the work of the wreathmakers. I think she was pleased. She said Dawn Liquid is the best for removing pine sap, even after all this time in Maine, there is always something new to learn!


Our next stop is Sullivan Harbor Farm in Hancock, Maine for a filet of smoked salmon for my Dad...and a little for us and the wiener dog (a newly acquired taste for him!) My camera was out in an instant when I caught sight of the glistening mound of filets and the gentleman slicing away the dark strips with lightening speed. The woman helping us explained those are the rich, flavorful omega bursts which they began selling a year ago, now immensely popular and a yummy alternative to fish oil capsules. We bought two containers of bite size pieces, maple smoked and Cajun seasoned.


I took shot after shot hoping to catch the omega burst in mid air!


A young woman weighs and packages smoked salmon.


They freeze beautifully, so you can stock up for the Holiday and beyond!

Monday, December 12, 2011

Cooper for One Year

Two little milestones, not very big in the greater scheme of things. Today I have been blogging for two years and tomorrow is our first anniversary with Cooper, the little dachshund the gentleman placed in our care. It was a stormy drive from Maine to Boston's Logan airport and the ground was slick with snow and ice. A triangle of anxiety formed from Michigan, Washington D.C. and New England for the wee fellow locked in his crate, somewhere en route. Our GPS collapsed in frustration while we negotiated the spaghetti bowl of roads around huge cargo buildings searching for Delta. At last we were there with time to let Shiner, our shih tzu, amble on a patch of grass and locate a tree for future use, which I was pretty sure our new family member would need after his long flight. We paced, the plane was late, the plane arrived, and soon two brown eyes peered through the door; instant love. Below, a few highlights of Cooper for one year.

Neutral Territory!

Cooper's first encounter with 11 year old Shiner who was not amused. Our idea was to introduce them on neutral territory before getting back in the car for the long drive back to Maine. The uppity shih tzu was not amused.


Instant bonding, in fact, Cooper is in a similar position right now!

Cold Morning ~ Warm Breakfast!

Breakfast on a cold was about this time that Cooper had located all the heat vents. Click on the photo to see the temperature.

Cooper & Hazel Napping

Cooper goes to Connecticut and meets Hazel, his soul mate

Story Time

....and another!

Cold Wet Nose

The gentleman arrives for Christmas and Cooper's new life comes full circle.

Salt Water Scents

Cooper discovers Mere Point, seaweed, salt water, shore scents,

So Little...


Boat Dog!



and new friends!

New Friends!

The beginning of the Cooperdoodles!

On the Road

A wistful goodbye to summer...

Summer's Over

...and hello winter!

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Negative Thinking

Fwd: Take a look at this picture!

Sometimes the most mundane objects are beautiful if viewed in a different way. A few nights ago, I accidently set my camera phone to negative shots while outside attempting to photograph the candlelights in our windows. I deleted the shots, but the results were intriguing, especially in the low light. Delighted with the layered darks and the spectrum of opposite colors, I experimented with some commonplace items around the house. There are so many possibilities...bright sunshine, snow, shafts of light, water and rock, silhouettes and on and on!

You could say I'm just fooling around with pixels the way I used to do with paint. Certainly a little nagging voice in the back of my head whispered, "shouldn't you be starting those Christmas cards?" Aagh! Negative thinking!

Fwd: Take a look at this picture!

Fwd: Take a look at this picture!

Fwd: Take a look at this picture!

Fwd: Take a look at this picture!

Friday, November 25, 2011

Romancing the (Old) Stones

Kilkenny Castle 05

Lately I have been tackling a back log of photos, organizing, editing and slowly posting to Flickr. Among them are images from a September, 2009 trip to Ireland. The photos here are of Kilkenny Castle, County Kilkenny. There has been a castle on this site since 1172. The property was purchased by James Butler in 1391 and since that time, the castle was continuously inhabited until 1935.

On the whole, we experienced fantastic weather in Ireland, but on the day of our visit to Kilkenny Castle, the sky was overcast, the temperature quite chilly and I recall picking our way around large puddles from a recent shower. The castle looked cold and unwelcoming. I remember thinking one would have a difficult time finding a warm and cozy nook in that forbidding expanse of unrelenting gray stone. Still, there is an ineffable atmosphere, especially walking the perimeter. Parts of the path appeared to be overgrown and remnants of summer roses were visible. When I later looked at my shots, I was reminded of the fairy tale "Briar Rose." I tweaked the photos and this is what I saw in my mind.

Kilkenny Castle 06

Kilkenny Castle 01

Kilkenny Castle 02

Kilkenny Castle 03

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving Wishes

November in Maine has been beautiful! I thought a hypothetical walk around our small village might be a good antidote for any readers dropping by this weekend, especially after a groaning Thanksgiving table! The following photos were taken two weeks ago. I actually had Cooper on leash, so this was not a serious photography excursion...still, I always have a small camera in my pocket and the lovely light and shadows were irresistible.

Granite Steps

Bouquet in a Window

Tree Reflections

Carriage House Window

Euonymous by the Fence

Two weeks ago! Here is the view from my window this morning, a winter wonderland!

Safe Travels Everyone!

Wherever you are, wishing you safe travels and a very Happy Thanksgiving!

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