Saturday, October 18, 2008

Round Robin Challenge: Your Home Town

"Your hometown is where they can't figure out how you did as well as you did."


Welcome to our latest Round Robin Challenge: Your Hometown. Marie, who authors the blog, Photographs and Memories, and hosts the Blogger's Community Photo Challenge, submitted this idea for consideration when we did a roundup of new ideas a while back. What a great idea, Marie! I love showing off where I live, the only problem is, I have probably shown just about everything there is to see. What to do, what to do?

Ok folks, here are some photos old and new. The East Bay hills is a gorgeous place to live, I don't see myself living anywhere else for the rest of my life, although I do daydream of retiring with Alan to the East coast sometimes. Someplace where I can get snowed in with a bunch of cats for months at a time. Someplace where the leaves really put on a show in autumn, and everybody has a fireplace. Don't you just love the smell outside, when everyone has their fireplaces going?

And yet, I am completely convinced I live in the most beautiful place in the world. If I had to choose, I would visit all those places I just mentioned, but I would always comeback here in my heart. I have fallen hopelessly in love with the view from Grizzly Peak Boulevard, and the Berkeley Marina, with it's view of San Francisco, and of course, you know how much I enjoy Tilden Park, especially in autumn. Yep... I am a true California Girl.

Here, have a look and see for yourself...
Sather Tower

Protesting On The Berkeley Campus

Hwy 13 Going South

Berkeley Marina

Tie Dye

Biking is the Preferred Mode of Transportation

Autumn In Tilden
Isn't it beautiful here?

Now that you have seen my hometown, go have a look at where the other participating Robins live! Or better yet, post your own hometown entry. There is still time, just pay a quick visit to the official Round Robin blog to learn all the details!

Linking List

Marie... Photographs And Memories

Gattina... Keyhole Pictures

Monica... Family Affair Photography

Karen... Outpost Mavarin

Wammy... The Ellis Family

Martha... Menagerie

Jill... South Bay Soliloquy

Cheryl... Life Through My Lens

Erin... Life Of A College Student

Jama Hameed... Sweet Memories

Connie... Far Side of Fifty

Carly... Ellipsis

Kat... In My Dreams I Can Fly

Teena... It's All About Me!

Ellen B... The Happy Wonderer

Mary... Hippie Gypsy

Friday, October 17, 2008

Weekend Assignment #237: Spending Spree

"Inflation hasn't ruined everything. A dime can still be used as a screwdriver.

-Quoted in P.S. I Love You, compiled by J. Jackson Brown, Jr.

Weekend Assignment #237: A long-lost relative dies and leaves you $10,000. But there's a catch: the will states that it cannot be saved, invested, given to charity or used to pay bills. You've got a week (sorry, lets make it two weeks) to spend it all. (Anything left over will be used to buy tiny wheelchairs for injured pigeons.) What will you do with the dough?

Extra Credit: Excluding food and necessities, what is the most recent thing you've bought for yourself?

-Karen Funk Blocher, of the blog, Outpost Mavarin

Extra Money? What's that?! Tee Hee. This has been a difficult year for us, financially speaking, but we are slowly making our way back to having a little saved. We are not complaining mind you, we spent it wisely taking care of Mr. Elvis, but there hasn't been much room for extras, thanks not as much to his medical bills, as to the sagging economy and gas prices! Still, as difficult as it has been, I know as sure as I am sitting here, we haven't had it as difficult as those folks trying to raise a family. Over all, I am ok with how we spent our money this year, Alan and I have made some smart choices, such as not eating out all the time. That is probably the number one drain on bank accounts, and the easiest expense to eliminate.

But the point here is to blow the pennies from heaven, so, lets do a little daydreaming, shall we? I can't do much about changing my priorities at this point, so I think I will find some things that will aid me in my life. Not necessities, but practical all the same. For example; I love to cook, so I would love to purchase a new set of cookware, and some new food processors. Also, I have never owned a really nice set of China, so I would buy me some dishes and flatware in a pretty pattern for all those gourmet meals I like to make! With what's left over, I will pick up some new clothes, like the ones I found this past week at my favorite store, Old Navy. I got two new outfits for under $15.00! Can you believe it? Two skirts and two tops, both interchangeable. Excellent! And of course, I would love to get down to Southern California to do some photography there!

That's it. That's what I would do. :) I would just like to spend it wisely, and be able to stretch it as far as possible. Luxury and Necessity can live together if planned for properly. :) Although spending the money just on myself wouldn't be very satisfying, so, I would purchase a few catnip mousies for any new friend I might have at the time. :) And Alan could use some new things too.

Extra Credit: The most recent thing I bought was my $6 outfits from Old Navy. I could have gotten by without them, but it was nice to have them all the same.

"Old Navy Mini Skirt and Top"
Berkeley, California
October 16th, 2008

Thursday, October 16, 2008

A Visit To Tilden Park's Little Farm

"I have been studying the traits and dispositions of the "lower animals" (so called) and contrasting them with the traits and dispositions of man. I find the result humiliating to me."

-Mark Twain, Letters From Earth, 1907

As I mentioned in a previous entry, Alan and I celebrated our 18th anniversary last Monday. We went out to a nice relaxing dinner, then engaged in some minor shopping therapy. I will share more about that later, I found some neat little bargains, and it was a hoot to be sure! Anyway, Alan is on vacation for the next three weeks, so we are planning some fun things close to home, but we have at least two long drive day trips coming up which should result in a ton of new autumn photos for the blog. Stay tuned on that. But first I have the pictures of my visit to the Little Farm, that sits in Berkeley's Tilden Park.

A day spent with the farm animals was just what the doctor ordered. Alan and I stopped at the grocery store and picked up a bunch of celery to take with us. Goats LOVE celery, and the farm encourages visitors to bring either celery or lettuce to feed the animals. I had so much fun. Alan feed the entire bunch of celery to the goats, poor little sheep didn't get any! We will be going back soon I think, so I will bring them some then. LOL. Spending the day on this little farm was relaxing and enjoyable, because the animals are well feed and have plenty of room to wander and be happy. Not all farm animals are treated humanly. I am voting "YES" on California Prop 2 in November. I hope you will too, if you are a California resident.

So, that was our first big outing on our vacation 2008! Next up, we have a date this Friday night to see the film, "W." I can't wait. I have been looking forward to that all summer. Sheesh. George Bush. We are going to the movie in the evening, then out for a slice of pizza and a sundae afterward. We have such a good time together, and lately we have been hugging each other just a little bit closer. We are doing better in our grief, it's a one day at a time proposition. In some ways Alan has had a much more difficult year then I have, in that it was his brother who passed away last February, and it was our friend Paul who passed away just a couple weeks later. One thing about years like this, we know 2009 will definitely be better! Years rarely run bad consecutively... although I probably shouldn't have said that! Way to go Carly! LOL. :) See, I have my sense of humor back! :)

Vote "YES" on California State Proposition 2: Standards For Confining Farm Animals Initive Statute.

"Silly Goose"
Tilden Park Little Farm
Berkeley, California
October 15th 2008

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Elvis In The Light

"Death leaves a heartache no one can heal, love leaves a memory no one can steal."

-From A Headstone In Ireland

First of all, thank you for all your wonderful emails, comments and phone calls. Each and every one of you have made the last week so much easier to take. :) A few of you have written some really wonderful tributes to my boy, the links are at the bottom of the page. If I missed anyone, please forgive me. Just send me the link and I will add it on to the list below. :)

This is the last photograph I took of my boy. I took it the morning he passed away. He loved sitting in the early morning sun, as it came through the back door in the kitchen. He hadn't been experiencing much joy in recent days, and getting up to sit in the sun was one of the things he had all but given up on. It was nice to see him enjoying it that morning, and looking at the sun on his beautiful fur was always one of my joys. He was such a handsome cat.

My boy is back home now, in a small little wooden box that I have placed in my cedar chest. It was a good thing to pick him up and bring him home once again. I am better now. I thought it would be more difficult than it was, but actually, in some ways, it made me feel better. Closure I suppose. Anyway I am ok, I miss him, but I am thinking about the million or so memories of the best cat ever, and I am just really glad that we found each other in this life. We will meet again someday.

Rainbow Bridge
Author Unknown

Just this side of Heaven is a placed called Rainbow Bridge.

When an animal dies that has been especially close to someone here, that pet goes to Rainbow Bridge. There are meadows and hills for all our special friends so they can run and play together. There is plenty of food, water and sunshine and our friends are warm and comfortable.

All the animals who had been ill and old have been restored to health and vigor; those who were hurt or maimed are made whole and strong again, just as we remember them in our dreams of days and times gone by. The animals are happy and content, except for one small thing; they each miss someone very special to them, who had to be left behind.

They all run and play together, but the day comes when one suddenly stops and looks into the distance. His bright eyes are intent; His eager body quivers. Suddenly he begins to run from the group, flying over the green grass, his legs carrying him faster and faster.

You have been spotted, and when you and your special friend finally meet, you cling together in joyous reunion, never to be parted again. The happy kisses rain upon your face; your hands again caress the beloved head, and you look once more into the trusting eyes of your pet, so long gone from your life but never absent from your heart.

Then you cross the Rainbow Bridge together...

Karen - Outpost Mavarin "A Good Dog Gets Better; A Great Cats Says Goodbye"

Steven - (sometimes) photoblog "Feline And Furball Friday"

Martha - "Mrs. Claws"

"Elvis In The Light"
Berkeley, California
October 8th, 2008
Early Morning

Monday, October 13, 2008

Ellipsis Monday Photo Shoot #7: Furniture

"Arguments with furniture are rarely productive."

-Kehlog Albran


We had a wonderful turnout this week! Thanks so much for playing, I was so pleased you enjoyed the subject that much! Visiting all of your blogs and journals was just what I needed, good therapy indeed. Today, Alan and I are celebrating our 18th anniversary! So, I am taking a few more days off, but I will be back to regular posting later this week. Look for me on Wednesday.

Now, on to a new subject...

EMPS #7: Furniture.
Ahhh... is there anything better after a long, difficult day then to come home and sink into a favorite couch or chair? It's one of the best comforts ever! So, for this week, lets pay tribute to the comfy, well worn, furniture in our lives! Do you have a favorite chair, either indoor or out, that you love to escape to when you want to read a good book? Does your hubby have one of those old tacky... um... well lived in ... recliners only a guy could love? I know, you have a nifty orange futon that was well loved. Or how about a bean bag chair left over from the 70's, or a Barcalounger you may have won on Let's Make A Deal? Well this is your chance to show it off! Show me your favorite piece of comfy, cozy FURNITURE!

Extra Credit:
It would be just nifty, if the furniture in question, has a few dents, bruises, or misplaced stuffing! That would mean it was loved, and has served you well. :)

**You have until next Sunday evening, at 9:00 PM, to submit your EMPS entry. After you post your entry, comeback here and leave me the link to that specific entry. And don't forget to link back to this entry on your journal or blog so other folks can play along as well!

Linking List for EMPS #6: Fences And Whats Behind Them 10/06/08


Wammy was the first to play, and shows us a display of beautiful quilts along a brown fence.

Judi joined us for the first time this week, and showed us a fence covered in snow.
Welcome Judi!

Gina also joined us for the first time, and displayed a series of fence photos, one of which held in a Giraffe! Welcome to you as well, m'dear!

Karen shows us the fence at Miko's Corner Playground! A great park for doggies!

Marie showed us a wonderfully rustic barn, during different times of year, which sits behind a fence in Old Bethpage Village, Long Island, New York.

Vicki attended a wedding on Lake Erie, and behind a fence at the reception, was a romantic sunset!

Jama found something absolutely creepy behind a fence! EEEEEKKKK! Perfect for the month of October!

Martha photographed a walkway between two fences that separate two tennis courts. I felt like I could just walk into the picture! It's seems to go on forever!

Connie introduced us to Chance, a Border Collie, who like to chase wild turkeys, bark at the deer, and run like the wind! He takes a mighty handsome photo while posing next to a fence. :)

Mary shows a sunset that seems to be held in by, you guessed it, a fence! :) Neat photo!

Vicki, also a new player and friend, photographed a fence line in Sandy Hook National Park. A peaceful place to be sure! Welcome Vicki!

Tammy has a natural colored picket fence in her garden, and behind it you will find some lovely spring bloom, and someone very, very special!

Nancy shows us a series of different kinds of fences, some with horses behind them, some with a puppy dog behind them, and one with a shadow waving hello! Hi Nance! :)

Laura has a happy little Scuba Duck that sits on her fence, and protects the yard. Good job Scuba Duck!

Kiva found some gorgeous roses, and a couple palm trees behind two different types of white fences. Excellent!

Ok, you know what to do! GO BE PHOTOGRAPHERS and GO GET THE PICTURE! See you in one week!