Friday, October 29, 2010

San Felipe de Neri Church: Friday Fence Post

Fence on San Felipe de Neri Church in Albuquerque, New Mexico.  This beautiful church, built in 1793, was still undergoing restoration in 2007.  It's on the National and State Registers of Historic Places.  I should definitely show you some more photos of this lovely church, and will plan to do that next week.

Ani is hosting Fence Post Friday on her blog Coffee Pot People.
Read all about it and link up HERE.
Come join in the fun!
photos by me © 2007

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Freedom Center: Two Images

I looked at my hands to see if I was the same person; 
now I was free.  
There was such a glory over everything.  
I felt like I was in Heaven. 
~Harriet Tubman

Recently I visited the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center museum.  What a wonderful place!  The exhibits are so informative and well done; many are interactive.  I found myself captivated.  There are artifacts, life size models, movies, lovely artwork, and the famous slave pen.  I was so inspired!  I can't wait to go back.   Recently installed is a new permanent exhibit, "Slavery Today."   (Yes, slavery DOES exist today and probably very close to where you live.  shocked?  Visit the museum and find out.)
Here are some shots of the slave pen, a holding building for slaves before being sold at the market.  Built in 1830 by Captain John Anderson, a Revolutionary War soldier, this 2 story building is 21' x 30' x 26' high.   Male slaves were shackled to iron rings in the floor of the second story; female slaves and children were housed on the first floor.  This is the actual, original building removed from it's Mason, Kentucky location and reassembled at the Freedom Center.

1 door, 8 small windows, 10' fireplace (where the women cooked)

"The pen is powerful.  It has the feeling of hallowed ground.  When people stand inside, they speak in whispers.  It is a sacred place.  I believe it is here to tell a story--the story of the internal slave trade to future generations."
~Carl Westmoreland, curator and senior adviser of the Freedom Center

Dark and damp, rank with odor, human waste and garbage would drop through the cracks of the upper story to the floor below.  On that upper story, men were chained two by two to a central chain by short shackles that allowed them to only sit or lie down.

Aminah Brenda Lynn Robinson
Journeys I and II
(textile work begun in 1968 and continuing into the present)
“In 1968, I decided to create a ‘work’ apart from other works that I created, that would rag on and on into the future.  At the same time the work would rag back and back into the past—penetrating the interior of West Afrika and the horrors of the Atlantic Slave Trade which had not even been imagined."
(click on the Journey images to see details)
In the photo above--the faces of slaves who traveled on the Underground Railroad.
Robinson's Journeys is a work in progress that has evolved over the years with her travels and experience.  She calls this type of art RagGonNons  because "they rag on and on."

Journeys tell very complex stories-- about her own journeys, as well as the journeys of African-Americans from the time they lived in Africa before slavery to the present. 

Brilliantly colored, heavily adorned and painted,  made from found objects such as fabric, beads, shells, buttons, leaves, bark, handmade paper, and twigs, it is laden with stories.

“A great civilization arose along the Niger river, established by the Songhai, a nation of scholars, warriors, merchant, farmers, and artisans.

The Freedom Center pays tribute to all efforts to "abolish human enslavement and secure freedom for all people."  Here we can see and touch and experience viscerally the entrenchment of slavery in human culture.  What you find might surprise you.  such as how widespread the African slave trade was, and not only, or even the most, in the United States.
The Freedom Center is rich with stories, with history, with human involvement that will cause you to cringe as well as leap for joy.

National Underground Railroad Freedom Center website
article about the slave pen, detailing the slave trade of Anderson
Aminah's World website   Be sure to click on "create your own artwork," for a fun, printable interactive art project.
fascinating interview with Aminah Robinson
~~~~~some tidbits:
"I pray over each piece..."
home is more of an environment than a traditional residence--art is everywhere, even imbedded in the kitchen floor... 
neighbors anonymously leave fabric scraps on her porch
the Doll House 

This is a fun weekly meme, under the direction of Jenny Matlock.  This week, our letter is "F."  Come and join HERE.  Here is Ms. Matlock's   submission.Now go visit!

PLEASE NOTE:  I am adding a LINK to this blog, Katz and Other Tales, for an enlightening report on slavery and chocolate.  Yes, chocolate.

photos by me © 2010

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

tagged again!

(click on the link above to go to Linda's blog)

I've been tagged again!  Linda, a bloggy friend has tagged me with four more fun questions:
1.  How did you meet your hubby?
I met him at a friend's house on a visit to Indianapolis.  A high school and college buddy had moved there recently.  My (future) husband had been on a trip and had just returned the night before I left.  The meeting was brief and there were no sparks.   A couple months later I moved to Indianapolis and....well....things changed!

2. What is your dream for this Christmas/Holiday Season?
My dream is to share this time of love with family and friends, to slow down and really enjoy the season.

3. What was your favorite pet as a child?

a cat, of course!  My first cat was named Chocolate.
HERE you can see a photo of me with Chocolate (photo #6).  My next door neighbors' cat had kittens and I fell in love.  After that I have almost never been without a kitty.

4. What kind of a car do you drive? No, car? Bus? Bike?
I drive a Subaru Forester (2009 in Newport Blue Pearl).  We hope to keep it for a long time.  So far, I love it.  It handles  well, gets decent mileage, and is big enough to haul stuff (craft shows and house projects).

Tuesday, October 26, 2010


My blogger friend Ani over at Coffee Pot People tagged me with four fun questions:

1. You're at a bookstore. What section has sucked you in?
You've got to be kidding?!  I have to choose?!  I LOVE  BOOKS!  Books take you away on adventures to foreign lands, other times, expose you to new ideas, people, oh, and things to make.  I get sucked into the crafts section most often.

This book, Luxury One-Skein Wonders, is special because inside is a starfish pattern by the son of a friend.  Is that not cool?!  (See his website HERE.

2. What is your favorite holiday?
That would be Thanksgiving, a holiday that both my children love.  It's all about family-- family and  food and fun.  Last Thanksgiving we ate, ate some more, wandered downtown (Cincinnati) taking photos, played with our kitties, played games till all hours, talked, laughed.  Here's a post from last year. 

3. If you could live in (or at least visit) any era, which would it be?
When I was younger, I used to think it would be fun to live in pioneer times.  Reading the Laura Ingalls Wilder books, the lifestyle seemed so romantic.  Such fun enterprises the family was involved in--such as making maple syrup!  I loved learning about their everyday lives which always seemed exciting. 
See a review of Little House in the Big Woods (first in series of 9) HERE.
Ah, but one day reality hit and I actually realized how difficult that life must have been.  I can say that I am now content to live in this place and time.

 4. What is your favorite literary genre?
The simple answer is, I don't have one.  I read a variety of books of all genres.  It is difficult for me to actually read more than one book a month--my book club book.  But I can listen to so many more throughout the month.  Tonight, my book club will be discussing The Help by Kathryn Stockett.  I loved this book!  (an exception:  I can read a ton of craft books any time.)

I've enjoyed reading the answers to questions posed in this tagging game.
It's fun to get to know my bloggy friends a little more.

So without further ado, here's my list of questions:
1.  Do you like to travel?  If so, where do you most like to go or what was your most memorable trip?  If you don't like travel, why not?
2.  What is one of your most favorite books you've ever read?
3.  What is a favorite family food you like to make?
4.  What do you collect? 

And now I tag the following who I do hope will answer!
Jackie of A Keeper's Jackpot
Sandra of  Joey and Aleethea
Pam of Magdalene's Jewels HERE and HERE.  Pam's answers
Joy of The Art of Joy

Now go have fun!

Friday, October 22, 2010

an unique fence: Fence Post Friday

I'm so excited!  My friend Anitra is hosting a brand new meme, Fence Post Friday!
Above is a cabin near Telluride, Colorado.  (To the left is a very unique fence.)  We were off-roading the Ophir Pass from Silverton in mid-September.
getting closer...
Now you can see that the fence is made of old skis!

Ani is hosting Fence Post Friday on her blog Coffee Pot People.
Read all about it and link up HERE.
Here are some of her past Fence Post posts:  very first one ever!   2  3  4
Come join in the fun!
photos by me © 2007

Thursday, October 21, 2010


The story of Earnest  (at least the part known by the current humans in his life)...
In the middle of a hot, August afternoon, a small, all-white kitten was found wandering outside on his own.  He was lost and hungry.  His tail appeared to be broken in 2 places.  Was he hurting, too?  A very kind human scooped him up and took him to another very kind person's house.  This kind person, Francie, takes in abused and abandoned cats (as well as hurt deer and birds).  The little white kitty was put into a cage with a black and white kitty about his age.  The black and white kitty had been born at the shelter.  The very kind lady played with the kitties every day.  She gave them food and toys.  They felt safe.   loved, too.  
One day, 3 people came to visit and to choose 2 kitties to live with them in their furever home.  The black and white kitty stuck his paw outside the cage as if to say, "See me!  See me!"  The 3 people were captivated, their hearts melting.  Quickly, a white kitty, and a black and white kitty were enveloped in the people's arms. Thus the little kitties were on their way to an enchanted new existence. 
Oh how wonderful this new home was!  So big!  So much to investigate!  The little white kitty could not hear, but he was nonetheless enticed by everything, never holding back in his explorations.  Thus he was given the name "Earnest." 
A sunny window is a great spot for a bath!
His most favorite activity (besides eating) is sleeping!
The stairs are his favorite spot, probably because he's deaf, and here he misses nothing.
For more about Earnest and his buddy Oliver, here's a  LINK and ANOTHER.

This is a fun weekly meme, under the direction of Jenny Matlock.  This week, our letter is "E."  Come and join HERE.  Here is Ms. Matlock's  submission.  Now go visit! 

photos by me © 2009 & 2010

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Desert Delights

In which we explore several disparate but decidedly delightful desert displays.   Come!  Let the dreamy dance of the desert muse begin!

Sonoran desert
decorated by prickles
conserves its beauty
desert dwelling birds
fly high into prickles
create domiciles
ancient rock towers
above the verdant valley
to glorious sky

photo #1 & #2 Desert Botanical Garden, Phoenix, Arizona   LINK
photo #3  Zion National Park, Utah   LINK

This is a fun weekly meme, under the direction of Jenny Matlock.  This week, our letter is "D."  Come and join HERE.  Here is Ms. Matlock's submission.
If you click this link, you will discover so many creative takes on this letter.  There are about 85 as of this writing.  Now go visit! 

This post is also for SkyWatch Friday hosted by Wren, fishing guy, Sylvia, Klaus, and Sandy.  Come join us in this awesome meme, link up, and meet folks from all over the globe

photos by me © 2009 & 2010
haiku by me © 2010

Friday, October 8, 2010


Listen!  the wind is rising, and the air is wild with leaves,
We have had our summer evenings, now for October eves!
~ Humbert Wolfe
 There is a harmony
In autumn, and a lustre in its sky...
~ Percy Bysshe Shelley  
Delicious autumn! My very soul is wedded to it, and if I were a bird I would fly about the earth seeking the successive autumns.
~ George Eliot
For man, autumn is a time of harvest, of gathering together. For nature, it is a time of sowing, of scattering abroad. ~Edwin Way Teale
Ho! for the leaves that eddy down, 
Crumpled yellow and withered brown, 
Hither and yonder and up the street 
 And trampled under the passing feet; 
Swirling, billowing, drifting by, 
With a whisper soft and a rustling sigh....
~ Grace Strickler Dawson
Every leaf speaks bliss to me,
Fluttering from the autumn tree.
~ Emily Bronte

photo #1 my backyard
photo #2 crabapple loaded with berries
photo #3 birch
photo #4 spiderweb in the hawthorne
photo #5 my backyard
This post is for SkyWatch Friday hosted by Wren, fishing guy, Sylvia, Klaus, and Sandy.  Come join us in this awesome meme, link up, and meet folks from all over the globe
This post is also for the etsy bloggers' team carnival.   Linda of Spotted Cow Soaps is the host and will post all the submissions on her blog on Monday, October 11 HERE.  For this carnival, Linda asks us to "Show us some awesome photos of autumn in and around where you live."
photos by me © 2010 (taken today in my yard)

Thursday, October 7, 2010

C is for...

Cats, of course!
Meet your Cicerones, Earnest and Oliver, as they guide you through their favorite Cs!
We'll start with Cute because that is our most endearing quality.
Comfortable is what we like to be.
 Cozy, too!
 Companionship is one of our most favorite activities (especially when sleeping).
Let me be your Cynosure!
Chant, that's what we do when it's Cibation time.  Me-ooow!  In this case it's Catnip!
It is not Customary to have furry furiends visit, but we did have fun with our Capricious friends Tigra and Bunkie.  Tigra is so Curious and Captivated by me, but I am not so Courageous, and quickly run away.
And here is Bunkie.  He's Crazy for his Casbah Kitten jelly bean.
That's a lot of Cs, and there are even more, but we are about to Collapse with exhaustion.  We hope Mrs. Matlock does not Cavil and gives this post her best Cachet. 
PS:  We did have some help with those really big C words.

This is a fun weekly meme, under the direction of Jenny Matlock.    Come and join HERE.  Here is Jenny Matlock's submission, C is for Cat.  (imagine that!)
This week, our letter is "C."  If you click on the link above, you will discover so many creative takes on this letter.  Now go visit! 

Editor's note:  Tigra and Bunkie are my daughter's kitties and came to play last November when they were 3 months old.  They had so much fun!  They discovered the stairs and had a blast running up and then down them.

photos by me © 2009 & 2010

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

just chillin'

Earnest turns momentarily from the window where he has been watching birds fly, leaves twirling in the breeze, and bugs flitting crazily against the pane.
Oliver lounges on his "perch" where he can watch for any interesting activity that may occur.
What are YOU doing to relax today?

This post is for the meme Cats on Tuesday published by Gattina.  Go to Gattina's BLOG to see more cats or to link up yourself.

Today I rode my bike in the lovely Fall morning with a small group, then enjoyed their company for lunch.  After I get this post up, I'll work in my garden.  Perhaps tonight I'll watch a movie with my sweetie and hang out with my kitties.
photos by me © 2010