The Beauty of Simplicity
Sunday, September 29, 2013
Saturday, September 28, 2013
Thursday, September 26, 2013
Edwidge Danticat opened the 14th season of Talking Volumes in the Fitzgerald Theatre in downtown St. Paul last night. This author's appearance coincided with the publication of her fourth novel, Claire of the Sea Light. Although she has lived in the United States since age 12, the novel is set in her native land, Haiti, and the story intertwines the lives of residents of an impoverished fishing village near Port-Au-Prince. Danticat read two very short passages from the novel but spent most of the time on stage with host Kerri Miller of MPR discussing her craft and various aspects of her life. Delightful woman.
Wednesday, September 25, 2013
I haven't been to the JCC for ages, probably because it reminds me of the exercising I am NOT doing. I recently enrolled in one of their classes, Notable Minnesota Women, and was pleasantly surprised to see the transformation of a dark and dreary cloak room into a snazzy new lounge. Wish the class had been held there!
Tuesday, September 24, 2013
Buying a refrigerator to fit into a cabinet space of a home that is 75-years-old is pretty tricky. In order to find a unit with enough space but with smaller dimensions than most refrigerators that are now on the market takes a lot of shopping plus ordering it on faith from another state without actually seeing it. Upon delivery, moving it through doors that are decidely narrower than modern houses is even trickier. Rigo (top photo) and his brother Lenny are masters at their job. Both of them were not only skillful and professional, but Rigo was more than helpful by assisting me in putting the shelves together and providing some other refrigerator-related tips. Both of these men were born here in the states but their parents are from Pueblo, México. Couldn't be happier that Rigo and his brother are Minnesota Workers!
Monday, September 23, 2013
Sunday, September 22, 2013
First Day of Fall!!
Two weeks ago I noticed that the leaves on this maple were turning.
An equinox occurs when the tilt of the Earth's axis has the sun directly over the equator. This happens twice per year. The Vernal (spring) Equinox happens around the 20th or 21st of March and the Autumnal (fall) Equinox happens around the 22nd or 23rd of September. Because the sun is directly over the equator there is a roughly equal amount of daylight and darkness over the entire planet during each equinox.
Saturday, September 21, 2013
First and Foremost
THE SATURDAY GIRLS!
Almost every Saturday morning these women, and a few more who aren't in the photo, meet for coffee. Their common bond is that they all have some association with the school where I used to teach: parents of students, faculty wives, and faculty. They meet at 9:30 am, and you can set your watch by their arrival. When I saw them last Saturday sitting outside in the bright sunshine in their bright clothes, I thought an early fall photo was in order. Nice women and talented collagues plus their kids were great to teach!
Friday, September 20, 2013
Tuesday, September 17, 2013
A number of years ago I posted a series on Minnesota Workers, which I think I will resurrect for Round Two. Here is our wonderful mailman who always has a treat for our dogs. He's a great guy doing a terrific job; I hope that the postal service will continue to be able to provide the same quality service for a good number of years, despite the inroads made by internet. And, those of you who know me are aware of how I feel about the absence of regular letters and notes that can be reread, savored, and saved. As much as I love email, it's having a profound effect on literary output!!
Monday, September 16, 2013
I found this mural on a patio wall behind a restaurant on Lake Street. The owner had just sketchy bits of information about it, remembering only that the artist originally came from Columbia but had left the Twin Cities. Didn't know his name nor the significance of the mural. I found this odd since she and her sisters have owned the restaurant for the past 17 years. I guess artistic significance and details weren't important to her, but her food takes precedence, although I wasn't thrilled with the meal.
Linking to Monday Murals.
Sunday, September 15, 2013
Saturday, September 14, 2013
Last Saturday DH and I went to Mears Park in downtown St. Paul for another outdoor music concert called Concrete and Grass. I feel fortunate that there are so many FREE musical venues in this city. The Schubert Club sponsored the Copper Street Brass Quintet, playing both classical and contemporary pieces. Much fun!
Friday, September 13, 2013
After the occupants of the black car had parked and left the car, the red van pulled into the next spot; the sweet young thing who was driving the big "honker" hopped out of the car and went on her way. . .totally oblivious of the parking problem she had created. The surprised Subaru owners discovered a bit of a issue when they returned, and I, of course, whipped out my camera to record the picture above, in the event that any damage would occur. As we stood behind the cars discussing the maneuverability of either car, the sweet young thing returned to her van, a bit surprised at what she had created. No apologies. I admired the gentleman at the wheel of the Subaru (no cussin' or hollerin'); he helped to correct the situation by verbal instructions to the other driver. Nary a scratch on either car. And, no thank you!
Thursday, September 12, 2013
Wednesday, September 11, 2013
My husband and family indulge me!
The photos are courtesy of Amazon's web site; do you think they'll mind?!
Because I am having a great time duplicating some of my photos and using as greeting cards, I decided I'd try to learn photoshop to improve the quality of the cards. Not a business venture since no-one seems to write anymore (the former English teacher curses!), but it's for fun, family, and friends. I'm finally giving in and buying photoshop at the suggestion of some of my friends and photo bloggers. I've resisted so far, but am taking the plunge now; wish me luck since I've heard it's not easy to learn. Any help out there?!
I'm also joining a camera club; this is serious business, folks!
Tuesday, September 10, 2013
ABOUTPianos on Parade (POP) is a project that places 'artistically transformed' pianos around the Twin Cities in various outdoor locations for all to play and enjoy.Some of these pianos remained in their respective outdoor locations for the duration of the event (June-August, 2013). These pianos paid host to both spontaneous and planned events and concerts. Other pianos were on tour and popped up at various outdoor fairs, festivals, restaurant patios and sporting events throughout the summer.
Monday, September 09, 2013
Can't tell you how many times I've left early in the day to try to get a photo of this mural. It's located on a building next to a clothing store, and it seems that always there are cars blocking it. I got lucky two days in a row and was able to photograph the entire mural. It's a typical scene of a bygone era. Unfortunately bad politics and an economic scandal interfered with keeping the trolleys, which they now would be a great way to see parts of the Twin Cities. The University Avenue to Snelling Avenue route used to be a heavily travelled and popular connection between the two cities. The promoters of the new Light Rail are hoping that this route will again be a main artery between St. Paul and Minneapolis.
Linking to Monday Murals
Sunday, September 08, 2013
"Woman Falls Off Second Story Porch Roof While Taking Early Morning Photos of Foreboding Sky." This could have been me! Seeing a photo opportunity I stepped barefoot onto my slick rain-coated, rail-less porch roof to catch this view. I started to slip and caught myself right at the edge of the roof, none-the-worse for wear, but now a bit more wary of weather conditions and proper foot attire!
Saturday, September 07, 2013
The best building at the Minnesota State Fair is the Fine Arts building that displays hundreds of juried paintings, photographs, and sculptures of Minnesota artists. It's the first building that I visit, and I suspect is the real reason why I go to this annual event. Each year an artist (often with a sense of humor) contributes an interpretation of a Minnesota icon or legendary figure. I was amused by this acrylic painting on canvas that depicts the folklore.
|Paul Bunyan, the mythical king of lumberjacks, lives on in Bemidji!|
|The greatest outdoorsman who ever lived was Paul Bunyan and the tall stories invented by fisherman and hunters to this day can never equal the 'truth' to Paul's exploits in the north woods.|
|This legendary superman and woodsman, hero of the early logging days, was born in Bemidji, Minnesota. The actual site of his birth is marked today by giant statues of both Paul Bunyan and his Blue Ox, Babe, standing on the shoreline of Lake Bemidji.|
|Old-time loggers recall the excitement of Paul's birth when it took five giant storks, working in relays, to deliver Paul to his parents. And what a baby Paul was; his lungs were so strong that he could empty a whole pond full of frogs with one holler when he was hungry. It took a whole herd of cows to keep his milk bottle filled and he could eat forty bowls of porridge just to whet his appetite.|
To read the entire exciting tale of these two, go here.
Linking to Camera Critters.
Friday, September 06, 2013
Every day during the Minnesota State Fair, a Youth Rodeo took place in the Coliseum. One of the events focused on young kids trying to remain on their animal after they both were released from the chute. While I was there in the audience watching, only one boy managed to remain seated. The others ended up as did this young lad.
Thursday, September 05, 2013
As an alum, I have library borrowing privileges at St. Thomas University, for which I am very grateful because many times they have books that I cannot find in our local libraries. I was on a mission to find some poetry books of Leanne O'Sullivan, a wee Irish lass. As I was entering Frey Library at St. Thomas on Summit Avenue yesterday on a bright summer day, I noticed this lovely young student propped up against the wall, deep into her books. Betsy who is from Forest Lake, a short distance from campus, readily agreed for me to take her photo. Smiling she indicated that her major is marketing and she is now a senior. Perhaps that explains her happiness!! My happiness was walking away with the two O'Sullivan books I found in the stacks.
Wednesday, September 04, 2013
I pulled up behind this cyclist on Summit Avenue, both of us waiting for the light to change. My camera was on the floor behind me. I put the car in park, opened both car doors, grabbed the camera, hopped back into the front (hoping my timing was right), and got a snapshot through the windshield. One of the best scenes of this summer!!
Tuesday, September 03, 2013
The Minnesota State Fair ended last night. . .really the official "end of the summer" for most school-age kids. Although I still have a few more Fair photos to post, I particularly like this large poster/billboard at one of the entrances. I like it because it depicts many important objects and scenes of Minnesota.
From left to right:
1. A Walleye--symbol of the state
M. The state flower: pink and white lady slipper
I . Paul Bunyon, legendary folklore figure, born in Bemidji
N. Up North Scenes including Babe, the Blue Ox who is Paul Bunyon's companion, and the Witch Tree
N. The state capitol building, a wolf, and Cantebury Race Track
E. Lake Superior lighthouse, Split Rock, and the Common Loon, state bird
S. Red Shoes of Judy Garland, harmonica and guitar for Dylan
O. Spoon and Cherry Sculpture at the Minneapolis Institute of Arts, and John Gehry's Weisman Museum at the University of Minnesota campus
T. The Lift Bridge in Duluth, shipping vessel and wheat representing one of the major crops and the milling industry
A. Steamboat on the Mississippi, Arch Bridge in Minneapolis, Land of 10,000 lakes.
I intend to go back to the Fairgrounds in a few days after all the vendors have left the scene to check it out again to see if I missed anything.
Monday, September 02, 2013
I've always said that I have learned so much about the world through blogging and reading other posts. This time I learned something about my own town. I took a photo of this mural that is on a building on University Avenue and noticed that it was commissioned and funded by "Weed and Seed" so I researched those words and found that it is a national organization with a project in St. Paul. Here is what I found: ***************************
1- Recently the Saint Paul Police Department received a $100,000 Weed and Seed grant from the State of Minnesota to be used in the Thomas-Dale/Frogtown neighborhood. Although the main focus of the Weed and Seed program is crime prevention, the goal of the Thomas-Dale/Frogtown program will include other neighborhood issues as well. It is hoped that eradicating some of the serious crimes in the neighborhood will lead to improvement in other areas as well. Engaging the area's youth, increasing voter turnout, neighborhood clean-up, and improving housing are some of the areas to be addressed.
2-The area chosen for the program is one of the most ethnically diverse in the city, and has a high population of youth. The ethnic make-up of the neighborhood has changed significantly since the 1990 census. It is estimated that 35% of the total residents presently living within those boundaries is Asian; Thomas-Dale/Frogtown now has the highest concentration of Southeast Asian residents in St. Paul. The community is home to the highest population of youth in St. Paul, 40% of its residents are under 18, and 70% of the youth are children of color.
3-Over 60% of the target area residents live in rental property. Median family income is $20,252. Single mothers head 40% of the households in the area. From 1980 to 1990 there occurred a 55% increase in the number of families living in poverty. Over 25% of the families live at or below the federal poverty line.
I, like many other blogger, tend to show the best about our city yet there are areas and lives that differ greatly from "the norm." I have to thank my photo blogging activities for taking me to other parts of town.
Linking to MONDAY MURAL