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Monthly Archives: December 2011

TODAY’S THEME……………………107 flat

OK…..maybe FLAT isn’t the BEST description of this situation but it is at least accurate.

 In this area, as in many others I imagine, the soil is VERY thin in places and at the furthest end of my property there are lots of bare rock outcrops. In between them however are often some pretty large trees and it isn’t until they fall over that you realize how tenuous their grip on the earth was.

 This group of 3 White Pine trees grew together as seedlings many years ago and came down this fall in a wind storm…in together and out together I guess.

 What is interesting is how LARGE the root system was ACROSS. As there is very little soil depth available here the roots spread out quite far and the tree is both nourished AND stabilized by the wide stance of the root system.

 Here is a side-on picture showing how thin the roots actually are ( less than 10 inches deep ) and from what was the bottom…nearly a flat rock, of how wide the spread across.

 
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Posted by on December 22, 2011 in Uncategorized

 

TODAY’S THEME…………..337 Translucent

 

Christmas lights are up around our house as usual and almost everywhere in town people have them up and lit.

 

These are a few of a new set we got that are LED rather than the traditional old type.

 

They are MUCH brighter and use less power and generate no heat ( where the power went I guess ) but they aren’t as ‘warm’ as the older lights for me.

 

I took the second picture a few days ago.

 

I’m not really sure what it is but it is some kind of secretion from the smaller branches a small tree….It looks like an Alder but I’m not positive.

 

In any case there were literally DOZENS of these secretions over several of the trees and although it was a cold day they were not frozen hard.

 

They were VERY hard but a knife could scar the surface and they reminded me of Amber.

 

In any case this piece was about 1 ½ inches across and ‘glowed’ attractively with the sunlight behind it.

 

I went out today and although it was perhaps a little colder they were ALL gone.

 

Maybe they taste good and they were gobbled up by some enterprising bird or Rabbit…don’t know but I’m sure glad I captured that moment on film…well….not film but you know what I mean.

 

I’ve included a picture of another piece that looked sort of like an Oyster mushroom…to me anyway….about 2 inches across, not translucent but still very interesting.

 
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Posted by on December 21, 2011 in Uncategorized

 

TODAY’S THEME………………..94 Faces ( in this case…face )

 

I purchased this recently from a HUGE chain unique to Canada..( Canadians will know which one I’m talking about ).

It’s a modern replica of an old one that was manufactured by Westclox for many years.

Today it is made in China ( where else ? ) and is made of plastic but aside from that it ‘appears’ to be the same ( one can only hope it lasts ½ the life of the originals made out of metal ).

Try though I might I was not able to find one NOT made in China although I could have purchased one made of metal but the design was hideous and at least this one looks like a clock and not a toy for a 5 year old.

I hadn’t noticed it much until it fell on the floor the other day and DIDN’T break!!!!…and when I picked it up I noticed how ‘human’ the back looked.

 

I have no idea why he is so unhappy….I’M the one who has to get up when he yells!

I’m not one to anthropomorphize inanimate objects but I was close to giving it a rude name in view of the unhappy scowling face.

Any suggestions will be most welcome and the winner will be granted one freshly made snowball ( when available ).

( Sorry….1 name per customer ).

 
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Posted by on December 20, 2011 in Uncategorized

 

TODAY’S THEME………………52 Free Theme…signs

I took this picture a few days ago while we still had a little snow.

I’m hoping some of you haven’t seen one of these signs before and later I’ll post another ‘northern’ sign.

I’d really like to see ‘SIGNS’ as an official theme as I’m pretty sure there are lots of unique and different regional signs that could be posted.

The yellow sign on the right by the way is the local detachment of the OPP….the Ontario Provincial Police.

The moose caution sign adjacent to it is I believe just a coincidence.

Interestingly the only cautionary on the sign in front of the cop shop is no drinking and apparently it only applies to beer.

Not wine or liquor and no mention of not using a cell phone which is also illegal up here.

maybe they’re OK with it now.

 
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Posted by on December 19, 2011 in Uncategorized

 

TODAY’S THEME…………..178 Metals

 

This post was inspired by KarenAnn’s recent cookbook post…made me reminisce.

I bought this device this summer at a church white-elephant style sale, or that’s what they used to be called for .50 cents.

Now I guess it’s either a garage sale or a yard sale.

I really have NO idea what year it was made and a search on the internet resulted in absolutely no good clue.

My best guess would be the 40′s-50′s but I could be off decades and not know it.

I would be willing to bet however that it is not likely to be any newer than that date judging by it’s incredibly sturdy all STEEL & CAST ALUMINUM construction.

All the blades are solid stainless steel and luckily for me I met the person who had donated it and she assured me it had ABSOLUTELY never been used…even once!

It had belonged to her mother but she didn’t remember seeing her ever use it nor when she had gotten it.

The design is INCREDIBLY simple and functional with a one-hand only blade removal and replacement.

It came with the full compliment apparently of the 5 blades available at the time  consisting of 2 shredders of different thicknesses, 2 different sizes of wavy or crinkle cuts and a smaller grater suitable for carrots, cheese or something similar.

Easy to clean and in fact the only thing not perfectly functional is the suction cup bottom that attaches to a smooth table or counter.

I’ll make a clamp or something like that but it is VERY sharp and VERY FAST and so far it simply will NOT clog under any condition..it just keeps spitting out the shredded material as fast as you can feed it in.

One TINY downside…in modern terms anyway is it’s COMPLETE lack of safety protection for you fingers.

It would be ABSURDLY easy to slice your finger/hand open and as it is so very sharp it would leave an impressive gash.

Caveat emptor…..use caution and it’s WAY faster than a food processor…has NO plastic to break….the oldest and most reliable of power sources ( you )…..and is absurdly easy to clean.

In fact the only ‘improvement’ I can think of is a support on the device that would safely store the other blades….but…no biggie.

B.T.W. It is made by Wear Ever

 
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Posted by on December 18, 2011 in Uncategorized

 

TODAY’S THEME……………..292 Surfaces

I took this picture in the woods a few days ago when we ALMOST has a little snow…..just a fading ( or melting ) memory now.

Without too much examination you can see at least 3 surfaces and although it is nothing more than a bush puddle it looked decidedly mysterious with hidden features beneath the surface visible because of the deep shadow.

Not a lot more to say.

 
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Posted by on December 17, 2011 in Uncategorized

 

TODAY’S THEME………………..177 Metallic

Featured on Do You See What I See  was a lovely warm looking moon over water scene.

Made me all warm and fuzzy looking at it and almost wanted to jump in the surf and splash around.

Here, on ALMOST exactly the other side of the world there exists ANOTHER kind of moon…complete with an almost sureal chill to it.

Believe it or not I have not added any blue or any processing at all to this picture…..just crop and resize in accordance with dialup protocol.

I assure you it was NOT AT ALL as cool that night as as looks in the picture but the sky was so ‘CHILLINGLY’ cold-blue I HAD to see if I could capture the frigid mood.

I sincerely believe I did.

 
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Posted by on December 16, 2011 in Uncategorized

 

TODAY’S THEME……………..336 Traditional

In our house a traditional Christmas starts with a real tree.

I’ve never bought one of those ‘perfect’ Christmas trees…..I prefer them the way mother nature made them….warts and all.

My mother in law has a perfect fiberglass and plastic tree and has been known to call some of mine “Charlie Brown” trees.

For many years my boys and I went out to the back of our property to get a tree…usually not too far back if we didn’t have to and/or the snow was deep.

Dragging it back was my job until my older son inherited the job and then later to the younger one.

Now I do it alone and go back only far enough to fine a non Charlie Brown one…..the tradition lives on but it’s not quite as enjoyable now without my kids beside me.

The first picture is the selection. Got to be careful about these ‘twin’ trees….they always look nicer than they are and usually they are sparse when they meet at the lower branches but the one on the right passes muster.



Second picture is the cut location…..have to make sure there are sufficient lower branches to make my wife happy…those are the pressie-hider branches.

Third picture…half-way through.


TIMBER!!!! and down she comes and dragged home to be left outside to rest 1 day then in and decorated.

 
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Posted by on December 15, 2011 in Uncategorized

 

TODAY’S THEME………….39 Celebration

    This picture was taken on the occasion of my wife’s birthday the other day.

I’d HAPPILY ( and foolishly ) blab about her age but as you all saw earlier the ‘doghouse’ accomodations are already occupied and I don’t want to share ….not with Wally at any rate.

In the background are some lovely flowers…..for her..and in the foreground a LUXURIOUS pressie.

Could it be a diamond encrusted broach to go with the 2 tickets to a private concert by Mick and friends?

NAH!….too flashy for my taste.

The flowers were from my son and his new wife BUT the pressie was from me and although it was a simple jade and gold butterfly earring set it nonetheless came with a custom handcrafted box….made of birch bark.

Sure you’re saying…..he’s an old romantic….a sentimental spendthrift with not a financial care in the world to lavish such a SIMPLE gife in such a sumptious wrapping……surely such things were reserved for the Gods themselves?

Or, on the other hand you might be thinking….”What a cheap bugger….a lousy pair of earrings in a piece of birch bark he ripped off a tree outside for free!!

To mitigate it slightly I DID take her to a surprise party I arranged at a local  restaurant.

Your call.

 
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Posted by on December 14, 2011 in Uncategorized

 

THE ADVENTURES OF JACK ‘N WALLY

Here are a few pictures of jack and Wally.

First is one I call….”Let’s dump the old man”.

They stay with me about 2 seconds into the bush road then off they go…..Jack determining the direction of travel and Wally in charge of trouble and distractions.

The next shot shows them at full gallop…heading who knows where.

Ahead is a subtle fork in the road…right to my pond, straight ahead deeper into the bush.

Now it’s time for a little ‘sparing’ dog style.

Wally…ever the sneeky bugger goes for a sliding neck-twister grab for the rear leg but Jack…ever the wise old master EASILY jumps up and grabs Wally by the neck…..game, set and match…only it will be repeated ad nauseum until we get back home.

Lastly the call to home.

Wally TOTALLY ignores me BUT luckily for me he REALLY likes Jack so when Jack comes to the call, Wally is always close behind.

Stay tuned for the further adventures of Jack ‘n Wally.

 
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Posted by on December 13, 2011 in Uncategorized

 
 
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