Saturday, May 30, 2015

May Blues

Here's a roundup of blue things that caught my eye this past month. A patriotic fashion spread:

 Recycled blue glass bottles:

A TV news report on the growing popularity of coloring books for grownups:

Twilight in Echo Park, with downtown Los Angeles on the horizon:

Palest aqua and body language:

Our birdbath pressed into duty as an ice bucket:

Periwinkle door and vintage knocker:

Mason jar dressed up for a casual outdoors party:

One of my favorite desserts:

Teatime with Mu Shu:

Fresh mani-pedi:

Salvia in our front yard:

An alley near my house:


The plane ride home from Chicago to Los Angeles:

Friday, May 29, 2015


This is a brief story of two houses and two best friends, who lived in Lewisburg, Pennsylvania, 150 years ago.

One friend was named Sallie:

(Don't let her dour looks fool you! People had to hold verrrrry still for a long time to take a photograph back in 1860, when this was taken. So they tended to have Resting Bitch Face a lot.)

Sallie was a lively, intelligent, kind-hearted young woman who lived in a big, comfortable house with her parents and younger sister, Mattie:

(That's Sallie, standing in back.)

This was their house, the way it looked when it was decorated for Independence Day in 1885. By that time, it had been in her family for three decades or so:

The house still stands. This is how it looked a few years ago. The front door underwent a transformation back in the 1930s, but it is still very much the same house:

One of Sallie's best friends in town was Lucy:

Like Sally, Lucy also lived a comfortable lifestyle. Her parents--and her 12 siblings!--were a prominent family in town.

This was Lucy's house (on the left) and its carriage house (on the right):

These two girls did the usual fun stuff back then--sleigh rides and musical evenings, entertaining gentlemen callers, having girlfriends over for tea, getting their photos taken and buying ribbons and finery to decorate their bonnets.

But they were also really good people. Sallie taught Sunday school at the local Baptist church, and when she was finished there, she went to the "Colored Church," as it was called back then, and taught Sunday school for the children there.

Lucy's family ran a station on the Underground Railroad, ferrying runaway slaves to the North and freedom. Harboring runaway slaves was a dangerous business; if she or her family were caught, it could have spelled ruin for them all.

Under the cover of night, Lucy carried blankets and hot meals out to the slaves hidden in the hay of her family's carriage house. Years later, she spoke about how scared she was to do that, how she was exposing her whole family to danger. But she did it, anyway.

Sallie's and Lucy's families were united at the beginning of the 20th century when Sallie's daughter married Lucy's nephew. The two friends--now relatives by marriage--lived long, full lives before they finally passed away as very old ladies.

Both their family's houses still stand. And last weekend, Lovely Daughter #2 visited them both. This was Sallie's house:

And this was Lucy's house:

Lovely Daughter #2 in front of Lucy's carriage house, where the slaves hid:

A peek inside the carriage house. If those walls could talk!:

So, LD#2 is Sallie's great-great-granddaughter, and Lucy's great-great-great niece:

And, I don't know, but...there seems to be a similarity between Sallie and her great-great granddaughter. Do you see it?:

Maybe now?:

I love to think that the ghosts of these two lovely women were thrilled to see one of their progeny visit the houses where they used to live and laugh and love.

Thursday, May 28, 2015

A Month of Mu Shu

Reviewing the photos I took during the month of May, I realized I had a lot of photos of Mu Shu.

Like any human mother of three dogs, I'll proclaim that I love all of mine equally. But still, I can't deny that I take a lot more snaps of Mu than the other two.

Is it because of that sad-clown face of his?

Or could it be, that being such a Momma's Boy, he's always at my feet, and therefore I see him being cute the most? For whatever reason, he is my pinup for the month of May.

Here he is, chillin' at the local Starbucks:

Doing his part to end the drought in California:

Hoping for the caterers to drop something:

Enjoying his girls, who were both home for a brief weekend:

 Mu often takes naps standing up. Or, in this case, standing up while straddling a pair of legs:

Missing Lovely Daughter #2,  hoping she's still in her bed behind the door. (She isn't; she had to fly home to Boston.):

 Keeping me company in my closet:

Mu Shu doesn't like it when I bring out the suitcase because he knows it means I'm going away. He either climbs in:

...or he hides in my hanging clothes, pouting:

 Inspecting the perimeter for intruders:

Demonstrating the Downward-Napping Dog:

 Visiting the local elementary school, which has barnyard animals:

Doing the Classic Pug Slump:

"I can haz tea, pleeze?"

Posing prettily on a pouf I found by the side of the road:

Although, being a Bear of Very Little Brain, he couldn't figure out how to jump off.

Brainless or no, Mu Shu, we love you.

Monday, May 25, 2015

Happy Anniversary

Exactly 35 years ago--on May 25, 1980--The Hubby and I were married. What an exhilarating day that was!

A lot has happened between that photo and this one: Three fabulous and gorgeous children launched into the world, two fulfilling careers, a victory over cancer, three lovely homes lived in, dozens of epic vacations, lots of tears, lots of belly laughs.

And we're still in it as a team. Happy anniversary, dude!

 Let's go climb a mountain together. 


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