Saturday, October 20, 2007

Round Robin Challenge: Shadowland

From ghoulies, and ghosties,
And long-legged beasties,
And things that go bump in the night,
Good Lord deliver us.

-Scottish Prayer

Day 2 of my 13 Diabetic Days of Halloween

Do you see the "ghost" in the picture above? Booooooo. :) I love the challenge, Vicki, author of the blog, "Maraca" submitted for this time around, "Shadowland." The spirit of the challenge was to seek out and find out favorite ghostly shadows and spooky goings on, and even photograph a spirit if possible. I would love to get a group together to try some spirit photography. I have had some rather profoundly spooky occurrences take place in my life, beginning when I was a small child. I believe there is something beyond this earthly realm, and I believe in the spirit world, so you can imagine how much fun I have this time of year. :) I love it. So, feeling inspired, I set out the meet the challenge, and here is what I found...

The "Ghost Tree" which can be found on the 17 Mile Drive, in Monterey, California. It is called "Ghost Tree" because over time it has been bleached white by the sun and surf on the shoreline. It is absolutely beautiful... you should see it sometime!

Silver Terrace Cemetery, Virginia City, Nevada

A reputedly haunted cemetery in Virginia City, Nevada. There is a long standing legend that mysterious shadow people, and ghost lights can be seen walking through the cemetery grounds after dark. I am planning a trip to Nevada next week, and this cemetery in on my list of haunts. Will I capture a ghost with my camera?

The view of San Francisco, from the Berkeley hills, as a ghostly October fog shrouds the city.

Mr. Happy Spirit, just hanging around.

A Ghoulish couple on their wedding day. Hmmm... Could it be Alan and Me in the photograph?

The famously haunted, Moss Beach Distillery. A local landmark, which has been rumored to be haunted by the ghost of the "Blue Lady," since the days of Prohibition. The legend of the haunting has been featured on, "Unsolved Mysteries," Dead Famous," and "Haunted Travels" on the Travel Channel.

Here is a close up of the window. Could the "Blue Lady" be looking back at us? Look you see her?

Now, be sure to visit all the Robins, to see their shadowland entries. Just follow the links below... but be careful... I hear spirits are roaming the land! Bwhahaha!

Linking List

Vicki -POSTED!

Karen - POSTED!
Outpost Mâvarin

Janet - POSTED!

Suzanne R - POSTED!
New Suzanne R's Life

Steven - POSTED!

Teena - POSTED!
It's all about me!

Gattina - POSTED!
Keyhole Pictures

Brad - POSTED!

Autumn 2006/2007

Friday, October 19, 2007

A Day In Pacific Grove

"The butterfly counts not months, but days, and has time enough."

-Rabindranath Tagore

How I spent day one of the 13 Diabetic Days of Halloween...

One of my favorite days of the year, is when we make the long trek down HWY 101, to Pacific Grove, also known as, "Butterfly Town USA." The Pacific Grove Monarch Grove, is stunning in October, as the monarchs begin their over-wintering, in the groves of Eucalyptus, Cypress, and Pine trees. They cluster in the thousands, so at any given moment you will be able to see them literally dancing in the sky above you. I am always caught off guard by their beauty, and the magical way they move in and out of the shadows.

Yesterday, was quite warm, and there wasn't a cloud in the sky, so they were really active. Getting a good shot was not easily accomplished. Still, I was happy with what I accomplished early in the afternoon, and then I spend the remainder of the day, enjoying the magnificent coastline and parks of Pacific Grove. I took a nice long walk after lunch, which is now a part of my daily routine to fight my diabetes. Exercise is good way to bring my mg/dl numbers into a manageable range. All in all... it was a good day. Exercise... it does a body good. :)

There were 6- 9 deer, just across the road from me as I photographed the monarchs. :) It was amazing.

Point Pinos Lighthouse

Pacific Grove Monarch Grove
Pacific Grove, California
October 18, 2007

Thursday, October 18, 2007

The 13 Diabetic Days Of Halloween

"When witches go riding, and black cats are seen, the moon laughs and whispers, 'tis near Halloween."


As of tomorrow, there are just 13 more days until my favorite holiday, Halloween. I am having so much fun with it this year, I am making some special nibbles for Alan and I to enjoy on the holiday. We have costumes all ready to go, and I have been working on the Elvis's costume, so it will fit just right. Today, we are spending the day on a photo jaunt in Pacific Grove. There is a lot of beauty there, especially in autumn. Hopefully, it will be warm enough today for the Monarch butterflies to be out playing. You usually can't see them if the temperature is under 55 degrees, so I am crossing my fingers for a warm day.

Later this week, I am going to do some entries featuring some autumn recipes I am creating, so I hope you will visit Ellipsis on those days, and give me some feedback. One word of warning however, they will be diabetic friendly recipes, but don't let that put you off, I am finding diabetic recipes not only delicious, but sometimes downright decadent. It's amazing how much I assumed about being a diabetic. I was wrong at almost every turn. From what I have been reading, this is the best time ever to find out I have diabetes. There are a lot of resources available, so that I won't miss out on anything during the holiday season. So, for the next 13 days, I will be celebrating the "13 Diabetic Days Of Halloween," including our next Round Robin Challenge, this Saturday, the theme of which will be, "Shadowland." So, let the fun begin! :)

Note: My pal Vicki has written a wonderful entry on her blog, "Maraca" which has some great links, and some information about a favorite spice used for cooking this time of year, cinnamon. Be sure to drop by her place and have a look see. :)

Sugar and Spice - Maraca

"Autumn Friends"
Lemo's Pumpkin Farm
Half Moon Bay, California
October 9th, 2007

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

My Flippin' Finger

"The world needs anger. The world often continues to allow evil, because it isn't angry enough."

-Bede Jarrett

Bother! I mean really, no one knows how to hurt themselves the way I do. LOL. Emotionally, physically, it's all good. LOL. Okay, so here's what happened. As you probably know, Alan doesn't like for me to watch the evening news while I eat dinner. We have learned that stress does bad things to my diabetes, and he worries about me, especially since the news sometimes infuriates me, and I get a little, well, emotional. He usually takes my tantrums with a grain of salt, and then there are times when he absolutely agrees with me and joins me in one or two conversations regarding current events, which usually calms me down, and to be fair, sometimes he gets a little passionate as well, especially when it comes to whatever stupid, embarrassing thing George Bush has done next. But last night, well, the emotions were all mine.

I was in the kitchen making dinner. Since Alan has been home on vacation, we have been experimenting with some new recipes we have always wanted to try, and last night it was Vegetable Beef Soup. I was cutting up some leftover pot roast to put into the soup, as ABC World News Tonight reported a story about how the military is having a difficult time recruiting chaplains. I can't believe just how very badly this country has treated it's military, particularly with George Bush in office. I see all these nifty little signs here and there with the slogan, "Support The Troops," which is a call to encourage America at large to to be supportive of their mission, regardless of what it is, and yet the very government that sent America's finest young men and women to war, has let them down at every turn. Everything from body armor... to military chaplains... to proper health care upon their return. It's shameful.

So, as I watched the report, I got madder and madder... and at one point, my emotion really just turned for anger to sorrow. The Bush administration loves to toss about the idea that we must support the troops or risk empowering our enemies. To not support the troops would send the "wrong message." And then they turn right around and justify the shabby way they have treated our own military. By now you know the laundry list of offenses, I won't go into that, but needless to say as my sorrow grew, my attention span waned, and quicker then you can say, "Cheney is an ASS," I cut my finger with a very sharp knife.

I can laugh now, but at the time I really thought I had done myself in. LOL. Blood squirted large and high. It kind of looked a little like that one comedy sketch on Saturday Night Live, where Dan Ackroyd, as Julia Child, cut his hand during a cooking demonstration, and suddenly there is five minutes of deep red blood squirting to infinity and beyond. Funny because of it's exaggeration. That couldn't really happen... could it? Yep, it can! I was watching the blood squirting up to the ceiling, and before I knew it, a long string of thinly masked obscenities came out of my mouth. "*&@@!!^&&**!!!"... and followed by "and the horse he tried to ride in on! The little jerk!" LOL. I knew as soon as those words came from from my mouth, Alan would be coming in to check on me. I hadn't even noticed at that point, that it wasn't any old finger I had just sliced open, it was my "flippin' finger." LOL. Although kind of appropriate I suppose.

Well, just so you know, we got the bleeding under control, so I am pretty sure no stitches are needed, and dinner was wonderful, as was the company. Alan didn't even lecture me about the "Bush Free Zone" agreement we had made, but he did laugh when he realized I had been wounded in the pointer. LOL. He put an Elmo bandage on my boo-boo and we moved on, but I think I have learned my lesson this time. No more evening news, news magazines or YouTube political follies during the dinner hour. Nope. Not me. Nope. I am kind of fond of my appendages. :) Live and learn... right?

"When angry count to four; when very angry... Swear."

-Mark Twain

Somebody's Got To Be There And Tell Them It's OK

Berkeley, California
October 16th, 2007
Late Afternoon

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Your Monday Photo Shoot: Lounging

"We have to fight them daily, like fleas, those many worries about the morrow, for they snap our energies."

-Etty Hillesum

Your Monday Photo Shoot: Picture someone or something in the act of lounging about or slacking off. Naps, loitering, general loafing - it all works. Show yourself, show friends, show pets. All this shoot needs is to have them not doing much at all.

-John Scalzi (By The Way)

Elvis has learned the fine art of the afternoon nap. I took this picture of him a while back, but it is a pretty accurate illustration of how he looks every afternoon, especially during autumn. He loves to crawl into the blankets on our bed, but sometimes I beat him to it, and get the bed made before he gets in. On those days, I leave plenty of throws on the bed for him to cuddle into, and I open the shade on the window so he gets the warm afternoon sun. He makes me sleepy just looking at him. I love cuddling him during a nap, he has the best belly in the world, well, second best. ;) Alan knows how to take a pretty good nap too. Tee Hee.

"Elvis and the Nap"
Berkeley, California
Autumn, 2007

Monday, October 15, 2007

Anna's Hummingbird

Gentle day's flower
The hummingbird competes
With the stillness of the air

-Chogyam Trungpa

Last Thursday, we took a drive down south to Pacific Grove, and spend the day along the 17 Mile Drive. We visited all our favorite stops along the way, and had a picnic lunch at Bird Rock. Afterwards, we continued along to the Lone Cypress, and then finally, Pebble Beach. We usually stop in at the Pebble Beach market for an afternoon treat of fresh fruit or cheese, but lately we have been forgoing the late afternoon indulgences. It's better for my diabetes if I try not to snack between meals, and truthfully I wasn't particularly hungry, so we just stopped for a little while to enjoy the ocean, and the grounds of the Pebble Beach Golf Course.

While we were there, we found the most beautiful bush of purple flowers, which seemed to be the favorite afternoon snack of some gorgeous hummingbirds. I was amazed at how beautiful they were as the sun caught their colors, as they moved in and out of the flowers. My Audubon bird guide, lists them as "Anna's Hummingbirds." I don't remember seeing that variety up in the Bay Area. I will have to do some additional reading to see if they are mainly found along the central coast of California. I will be heading to the Pacific Grove either later this month or early next month to visit the Monarch grove, so hopefully I will get a chance to study them a little closer. :) They were fascinating to watch, as well as photograph, but then again, any new bird that I get to discover with my camera, always becomes my new favorite. :)

"Anna's Hummingbird"
Pebble Beach Golf Course
Pacific Grove, California
October 11th, 2007

Sunday, October 14, 2007

An October Evening

Click on the photo to see the enlarged version.

"Night, the beloved. When words fade, and things come alive. When the destructive analysis of the day is done, and all that is truly important becomes whole and sound again. When man resembles his fragmentary self, and grows with the calm of the tree."

-Antoine de Saint-Exupery

There was a gorgeous sunset last night, so naturally I just had to stop and photograph it. This is the view from Grizzly Peak Boulevard, here in Berkeley, looking out toward San Francisco. The weatherman says it will be nice for one more day, and then some rain will be coming in for most of next week. Sigh. I love the rain, but I love the clear days that lead to sunsets like this one. What's a girl to do?

"Berkeley Sunset"
October 13th, 2007
Berkeley, California