Friday, August 30, 2013

The Challenge Continues.....More Pictures in Color and Black and White

I am posting every other day so I don't "picture" everyone to death! LOL

So here is a color picture of Spencer that I love because of his shirt. This color of blue goes so well with his skin tones. While I like the black and white version, I am not sure it does him justice. What do you think?

Next is a picture of Henry at the zoo. I love this one in the black and white.

I hope everyone has had a good week. I have enjoyed looking at your photos and reading your posts. We have been busy going through the china buffet cabinet. I never realized I had so many margarita glasses! LOL! Needless to say, we will have a lot to sell at our garage sale. Some of the things are hard for me to part with but I don't think I will use them anymore. I haven't made a trifle in years so I don't think I will make one after we move to Belize. Some items were my moms so I will offer them to my sister. Going through and getting rid of your things can be so hard sometimes. I have to learn not to hold onto things for pure sentimental reasons. Do you find it hard to let things go as well?

Take care and Happy Friday to those who still work. xxxx

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

August Quote Week and Challenge

Here is our quote this week from Lynne:

“When you photograph people in colour you photograph their clothes. But when you photograph people in Black and White you photograph their souls” ...Ted Grant
This is our challenge:
This week I would like you to concentrate on taking photos of people, first in colour and then changing the photo into B&W with your camera setting or using a photo programme if you can. Show us your results.

Here are two collages of Spencer in his "Five Month Old" pictures.  One in color and one in B&W. I think I like the color better.

Here are a few other pictures. This one is of our blue skies today. Black and white would not do it justice.

Here is a very old picture of my mom when black and white was the norm. It is so old it has yellowed some.

 Here is a recent one of Henry playing in his "golf cart".

That's all for today. xxxxx

Monday, August 26, 2013

Challenge is Just Passing.....

We are supposed to take or put on our blog two photos each day. One can be of a person or pet and one is to be of something outside. Also one is to be in color and the other in black and white. There is no specific topic, it is our choice.

For my black and white photo today I decided to put a picture of me that was taken on an Easter Sunday many years ago. I don't know for sure how old I was but I believe I was four.

For my outside color picture I decided on one I took when we were in Belize in April. We were driving by a banana plantation and were interested in the blue plastic bags covering the stalks of green bananas. We guess they did that either keep the pests away or to keep the bananas from ripening too quickly. Anyway, I was fascinated by it.


Friday, August 23, 2013

This week Nostalgia......

Our challenge this week is about nostalgia, how our parents and/or our jobs have changed over the years.
I was wondering what jobs people have had and how they have changed over the years?
What jobs did your parents do, maybe jobs which are now defunct or would be done very differently now?  How did jobs affect family life and how you grew up, what it made you want or dream for yourself?

I am sure we all have odd stories to tell..hope so!

I will try and pop in during the week with some extra thoughts, but if you would like to expand on this perhaps you could write a bit each day :
  • your parents' jobs, how life has changed
  • your first job, the mistakes you made!
  • your best job
  • the dream job you wish you had
  • the worst job you ever had

  • Both of my parents were born and raised in West Virginia in the areas of the coal mines. Their families were very poor. My mother's mother passed away when my mom was only a toddler. My mother was basically raised by her grandmother as her father (my grandfather) spend long hours working in the coal mines. My parents were forced to quit school in the 8th grade to help support their families. Neither of them ever had a chance to return to school.

    In his early years (before my time) my father drove a Greyhound Bus (long distance bus service between states) and then after that he drove a beer truck. When I was a child my father was a long distance truck driver (big rigs) for Kraft Foods and he would be gone weeks at a time. It was always exciting anticipating his return. At that time my mom was a homemaker who did not work outside the home. I loved this as well as she was always there when I got home from school. She didn't drive so we would usually walk everywhere we needed to go or take a local bus. Going to the grocery store was interesting because we would walk there and take a taxi home as we couldn't carry all the groceries while walking.

    My dad passed away when he was only 52 so I am not sure what he may have done in his later years but I do know that the company he worked for starting shipping their big trailers by rail instead of trucks. He probably would have been out of a job. My mom had to go to work after that and since she did  not really have any special skills she had to get a job in a department store. She really didn't like it but she stuck with it until she could retire. Her employer didn't treat the employees very well.

    Any pictures that I have of them back in those days are packed away and I can't get to them right now as the area where they are stored is all mixed around while Thadd is doing some work in that room.

    In the summer when school was out, I started working as a child of nine for a neighbor woman babysitting her two boys during the day while she was at work and cleaning her house. I got paid a whopping 25 cents an hour! The boys were brats to boot! When I got a little older I used to pretty much spend the summer at my girlfriend's parents house that was on the Gulf of Mexico. We would earn spending money doing odd jobs for people but I think the most lucrative job we ever did was packing shrimp to be used as bait (they would be frozen later). We got paid 3 cents a carton. We would probably pack 100 cartons or more each. The cartons were like these (take out Chinese Fried Rice comes in the same kind of carton LOL).  Afterwards we would smell so bad we would go jump in the canal clothes and all. Boy, we thought we were rich! 

    I have had many jobs over the years. I was a certified optometric assistant in my early twenties. I also worked as a PBX Operator. That was a stressful job and if you weren't careful you could get a shock as well (literally). This is not a picture of me but it shows a similar switchboard like I used.  I worked my way up from switchboard operator to executive assistant over the years. 

    When I lived in Tennessee (in my twenties) I worked as clerical assistant at JC Penney (a large department store chain). I had to quit when I was seven months pregnant with my daughter.

    I stayed at home with her for three years and then went to work at the University of Tennessee Memorial Hospital. I was the administrative assistant to the Chairman of the department of Pediatrics. I worked there until the early to mid 80s when I moved back to Florida.

    Enough old history! My dream job was when I was a travel agent. It was so much fun booking travel, cruises, tours, etc. for other people. I would get to research the areas they wanted to go which would broaden my knowledge. I loved learning about places. Also as a travel agent you received a lot of nice perks like really cheap prices for cruises. To this day, I still think a cruise is the best vacation value for the money. These pictures were taken on our first cruise many years ago. We still love cruising!

    If I could have stayed a travel agent I might still might be working! With what happened September 11, 2001, the bottom dropped out of the travel industry and most local travel agencies closed, including the one where I worked.

    The worst job I ever had wasn't due to my position but to my boss. He was so derogatory and just down right mean. I used to say he was evil and since I believe in karma, I know one day he will get his due. LOL

    Like I said, I have had so many jobs over the years that I really can't list them. I am happy to be retired now though. And to update hubby's situation....he decided to retire as well. It will be tight financially but we think we can handle it until we can get the house sold and move to Belize.

    Here are some nostalgic pictures of days gone by. Enjoy and take care. I look forward to reading your blogs! xxxxx

    Sunday, August 18, 2013

    S for Sunday and Silly

    I have had a lot of irrelevant things going on this week since my mind has been elsewhere so it has been fun coming up with pictures and items to go with each day of the week. Today is the end of the challenge since it is Sunday so I am using "silly" as my word. Here is a silly picture that actually probably describes my mind this past week. I don't think anyone would have wanted to be me or be inside my confused head! LOL

    Catch you later on! xxxxxxxx

    Friday and Saturday

    F is for funnies. I actually had some trouble coming up with something for Friday and Saturday. I finally decided since I have sort of been in a blue funk to use funny pictures, etc. I have found on the internet and Pinterest over the last few months. I still smile when I see them. Hope you do too.

    For Saturday (S) I couldn't resist taking this picture of our dog Toby and my daughter's dog Chino sitting and staring up soulfully and silently at Thadd while he ate, hoping steadfastly that he would drop a morsel or two that they could swipe before he could pick it up. They sat like little statues (notice all of the 's' words?) for several minutes then sorrowfully gave up when he did not leave even a crumb for them.


    I hope everyone had a good weekend. xxxx00

    Thursday, August 15, 2013

    Thursday = T for Tootsie Roll Pops

    I couldn't think of anything to use today until I saw my suckers. Tootsie Roll Pops. If you don't have them where you are, they are fruit flavor suckers with a tootsie roll center. A tootsie roll is another candy that is a chewy, chocolate concoction that is another American favorite. So here is a picture of some of my Tootsie Roll Pops.

    I want to thank everyone for their hugs and well wishes. I am in a better frame of mind today but still worried. We are going to 'crunch' numbers (as Thadd says) this weekend to help determine what we are going to do. Take care. xxxx

    Wednesday, August 14, 2013

    Wednesday = W for Worried

    Our letter today is "W" for Wednesday and is a day of worry for me. Hubby is having work issues and we are trying to decide what to do. He has been unhappy for a while now (ever since he got a new boss) but was determined to stick it out until we could finish up our plans to sell our house and everything else we wanted to do so he could retire and we could move to Belize. Now, that decision is being taken out of our hands, to a degree. He is being told he can step down from his market manager position and become a store manager, or he can quit. Here in the US the optimum retirement age depends on the year you were born. His full retirement age is 66 (you can retire at 62 but with diminished benefits).

    Our issue is the health insurance. As long as he works we have coverage (not the best, but not the worst) which is definitely less expensive than trying to pay for individual insurance on our own. You have to be 65 to get Medicare (which really is a joke anyway) and whereas he will be 65 in February, I will not qualify for two more years.  It is not so much the doctor's visits, though that could be expensive, but our medicines. We are already paying a small fortune in co-pays although we have health coverage. We are just in a tizzy right now trying to make the right decision. I think this might be a blessing in disguise, but I am really worried.

    I don't think we have much of a choice right now. Thadd will have to take the demotion.


    So, everyone please keep us in your thoughts and any suggestions are welcomed! xxx

    Tuesday, August 13, 2013

    Laundry day - T (Tuesday) is for Toby

    Doing the laundry is such a boring (and never ending) task but a necessary evil. I don't mind the sorting, loading the washer/dryer, etc. but I dislike hanging and folding the clothes. Most of Thadd's shirts are 100% cotton and he doesn't want them to shrink, so they get hung up wet instead of being put in the dryer. Then the ones that do get dried have to be hung up immediately when the dryer stops so they don't wrinkle. I think my least favorite thing to fold is undies! ARGH! At least I don't have to worry about them getting wrinkled. Sometimes I wish clothes were made to wear once and then throw away. LOL!!

    Here is my dog Toby. This is a picture I already had because I could not get him to cooperate with me today so I could take a new picture. He is more interested in sleeping. Oh, the life of a pampered pet! He is a Chihuahua and is very smart. He even knows how to spell or at least he always seems to know when I say to Thadd, "do you want to take the D-O-G for a R-I-D-E?"  He gets all excited and starts running around. He is also a very sweet, loving dog. Most Chihuahua's don't like kids, but Toby loves everybody. He isn't a yapper either like a lot of small dogs. He seldom barks at anything.

    Hubby plays cards on Tuesday evenings so tonight's dinner will be something simple. Last night's country fried steak and gravy was delicious but there were no leftovers for my lunch today! Thadd told me last night he would skinny if he had married someone who couldn't cook. Wasn't sure if it was a compliment or not. LOL!  Take care everyone. xxx

    Monday, August 12, 2013

    Let's Reflect - August

     Our challenge from Anne is as follows:

    I chose our word this week, based on that nice experience and the word is :


    If you don’t know what it means, here are some synonyms : insignificant – unimportant.

    To be happy and enjoy the moment, we sometimes need to let go of what we think we need to do but in fact is totally irrelevant at the current moment and choose to do something else, much more enjoyable.

    I would like us to concentrate on the little ( or big ) things that annoy us and come between us and our happiness, the little things that we make so big but are in fact so small and we can forget so quickly.

    This week, take a picture of all that you don’t do and leave for later and what you replaced it with.

    Show us the dust you can write on, the car that really needs a body wash, the pile of ironing, the jungle developing in your garden . . . and in comparison the relaxing lunch, the playing with the kids, the afternoon spent crafting . . .

    I started cleaning out some drawers last week (if you remember). Well, I made a mess but never finished what I was doing because I couldn't make up my mind what to do with the cards I wanted to keep. So, here is what I should have been doing, putting this pile of cards away somewhere.

    But this is what I spent a good part of the day doing instead, playing around on the computer, especially since Monday is my least favorite day of the week.

    We also have a side challenge to post a picture a day of something that corresponds with the first letter from the day of the week (M=Monday, T=Tuesday, etc.). I decided to take a picture of the meat I took out of the freezer to prepare for dinner tonight. I call it 'cubed steak', Thadd calls it 'chopped steak'.

    I will fix it in a mushroom gravy (not as healthy as it could be) but mighty delicious.  When it is all said and done it will be my version of  'country fried steak and gravy'.

    Everyone have a good evening. xxx

    Oh, I'm Behind...I need sweet, drink, and book!

    Wow, it doesn't take much to get behind does it? Well, I seem to veer off course every once in a while. Like yesterday I got caught up in my Harry Potter Movie Marathon and that was all she wrote! LOL!! So here is my post on the prompts I missed.

    First is a picture of one of my favorite sweets. The only place to get it here is at a specialty store called World Market. There is not one close to where I live (which is probably good for my budget). This is the last one I have left. Oh well! Don't need it anyway.

    The next picture is of our wine cabinet. Usually every slot is full but we haven't been drinking as much wine recently for some reason. Thadd mostly drinks beer and I have almost completely stopped having anything but water or iced tea.

    And last but not least, is a book I just finished reading. Most of my books are on my Kindle but I still like to turn the pages of regular books as well! I just love books and reading! I probably spend too much time on it as I seem to get lost for hours in a book!

    Well, that's all for now. I will have to think on our new challenge. I'm sure I can come up with something that I can take a picture of that doesn't embarrass me too much! LOL!! Everyone take care. xxx

    Thursday, August 8, 2013

    Prompt Today - Stone

    I don't have any real stones like you would find in a garden or road so I had to improvise. I took some pictures of items made of some sort of stone in my house. The coffee and end tables in our family room have stone tiles on top. Then I found two frogs that are made of stone and hand painted (one is very small and one is a pitcher I have sitting on my dining room table. The last item is a hand crafted stoneware bowl we bought at a craft fair. Usually it has fruit in it but I am all out.

    I went and spent some time with the grandbabies today, so I can't resist putting a picture of Spencer on here even though he is not stone! LOL  Everyone take care. xxx


    Wednesday, August 7, 2013

    Prompt today is - Time

    I think this is a good prompt for me today as I seem to have plenty of time on my hands. I know I have things I could do but that is part of the fun side of being retired. I can always do them tomorrow! LOL

    Here is a picture I found on the internet regarding time. I thought it was very fitting. All the different time zones!

    Well, I guess I had better go back to thinking about what to make for dinner. That will take up quite a bit of my time as I have no clue at this point what to fix. I will close with a video of one of my favorite songs as a teenager.  Take care everyone. xxx

    Tuesday, August 6, 2013

    Tuesday - Prompt is Green

    I haven't been up to much today except for the same routine though I did make blueberry cobbler this morning. We had some blueberries that needed to have something done with them before they went bad, so I gave Thadd an option last night...blueberry cake or cobbler? He wanted cobbler. Here is a picture of the finished product. Looks yummy!

    Our prompt for the day is green, so I decided to take a picture of a big, green stuffed frog I have. Yes, I have a lot of frogs. I used to collect them and you know how that is. Once people find out, they all give you frogs!

    That's all I have for today! Take care everyone! xxx

    Monday, August 5, 2013

    August View and Prompt - Weather

    It's hard to believe it is August already! Wow, where does the time go?

    Our challenge today is our view for August and another prompt for photos of our weather or a peek into our day. I am going to post pictures of Henry (my view, and one of Spencer) that were taken at the beach over the weekend. I wasn't there but my daughter provided the pictures. They also went to the aquarium so I will add one from there as well.

    Stacey said they had a good time but it was terribly hot even with the gulf breeze.

    The aquarium is in Tampa and Henry was fascinated!

    Here is some pictures of our weather today. The one on the right is of our sky light in the bathroom where the sun comes in brightly every day, then I took one of our thermometer on the patio. Right at 100 degrees F! Then I added some blue skies with white fluffy clouds followed by some of the gray clouds moving in for our standard afternoon thunderstorm.

    Everyone have a great day! xxx

    Saturday, August 3, 2013

    Daily Peeking - Saturday

    Another hot day, another day inside! Just a quick note to post a few pictures for the day. I spent some more time going through some old photos of the family and decided to scan a few.

    My son and daughter when they were young. Such cuties!

     They grow up so fast!

    My mom
    Family (Mom, Thadd, Me, my sister (blonde), her husband (beard), my brother (blue shirt) and his wife (brown top) celebrating.

    Friday, August 2, 2013

    Daily Peeking - Friday

    Thadd and I went to an early dinner tonight (if you don't go early, you would have to wait up to an hour or more for a table) so I thought I would show pictures of what I had to eat. We went to Red Lobster which is a seafood restaurant (chain restaurant). We don't go out often but we were both in the mood for some seafood but didn't want to have to cook it ourselves. LOL

    These are their cheddar garlic biscuits. They are famous for these. As you can see, our biscuits are different from yours.

    This is the cole slaw I ordered. I can't eat green salads but I can get away with a little cole slaw which if you are not familiar with it, is made from raw cabbage. I only ate a bit of it but it was good. Thadd helped me out by eating some as well.

    This was my baked potato and fried shrimp. I know fried food isn't good for you and I don't eat it very often but to me it is the best way to eat shrimp. Thadd had the Admiral's Feast which I did not take a picture of because it was all fried and consisted of shrimp, fish, scallops, clams and french fries! You would gain weight just looking at it! LOL!! In case you are wondering what the red stuff is, that is cocktail sauce.

    That's all for today. Everyone enjoy their weekend and take care. xxx