Skywatch Friday – Point Pleasant

When I had time to blog, and take pictures with my DSLR, I had multiple blogs. One was mainly for sharing my photography and participating in daily photo “challenges”. I really enjoyed looking for subjects of the different themes each week. I have recently “downsized” my digital presence to just one blog. This blog space will now be my random musings about life as well as a place to showcase my photos! I hope you will visit often!

I always loved particiapting in SKYWATCH FRIDAY. So many fantastic photographers share their views of the sky from around the world. This is where I will start! I hope you enjoy my photo and if you have a chance take time to head over to Skywatch and enjoy the photos of others!

This photo was from two years ago in Point Pleasant, NJ. I am so missing the ocean. I have not even had the opportunity to take one day trip to the beach (it in less than 2 hours for those who are not local friends.) This weekend ends the summer beach season, I am hoping for some nice weather mid month, when I plan on taking a couple extra days off from work. I would love nothing more than a day trip to the coast to enjoy some quiet and peaceful time wiht the ocean. I was born under the sign of Pisces and really feel a sense of well being and contentment when I am near the ocean. I have been lacking this feeling for quite some time now and need to recenter!


Point Pleasant Beach, NJ, USA

We have a gorgeous blue sky here this morning, it really feels like fall is on the way. A beautiful day to spend outside, too bad I have to be at work in 4 1/2 hours. I will be spending most of my weekend at work, as will Tara. Labor Day weekend will find us both laboring!

Have a great day!



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Wheels, wheels, wheels!

Philadelphia Magic Gardens is an amazing place to visit should you find yourself on South Street, Philadelphia. This is not the first time I have blogged about PMG, and I am sure it won’t be my last. It is one of my favorite places to visit.

PMG is the work of Isaiah Zagar. A Philadelphia row home turned into a living ever changing work of art. Walls, floors, ceilings covered in mosaics made with found items. Isaiah has created mosaics all over the city. I like to adventure down the side streets and alleys around South Street to find new works I had not seen before. Should you find yourself on South Street, Philadelphia, or in Philadelphia at all, do yourself a favor and spend a couple hours at PMG!

I looked at Thursday Challenge theme for today and saw “wheels” and immediately thought of the bicycle wheels Isaiah has used in his works, so today I will share thirteen photos of wheels in Isaiah’s work so I can also participate in Thursday 13!


The artist, Isaiah Zagar, on his bike


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Thank you Louis Daguerre!

Today I am thankful for photography. Not only has it been a long time hobby of mine, but it is the thing that brought me to blogging, which has brought me to so many wonderful blogging friends. I am not artistic in any way that requires the use of a pencils, pens, or brushes, but when I am taking photographs I feel like I am creating works of personal art (well some of them!)

Living in Orlando, with almost weekly visits to Disney gave me many opportunities to practice my photography, not to mention the varied wildlife and bird life that is found there! Florida was where I learned to NEVER LEAVE home without my camera, which has been made much easier now that our smartphones generally have a pretty decent camera!

You can peruse some of my photography here. There is some good, some bad and some so-so. Now that some years have passed since our “Disney Era”, I need to go through and clean out some of the so-so pics!

Well, it is time again to run to work! I had a productive day off yesterday, and look forward to Friday and Saturday off!
The weather has continued to be unseasonably warm, but rainy. I hear that we are in for the return of colder weather and possibly even a wee bit of the white stuff tonight!

Thanks A-Latte for stopping by!


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My Favorite Hobby

Day 19- A talent/hobby

I’m pretty amazed at myself for having made it this far through 30 Days About Me! Have you joined in on the fun? Stop over at Toni’s and check out the other participants!
30 Days About Me

The hobby that I practice the most is photography. Photography is what got me interested in blogging, and blogging is why I am here! You can see my photography from over the past few years on my Photos by MAK blog.

I always loved taking pictures, however, our time living in Orlando gave me so many opportunities to do what I loved. There was so much to see and do that cost us little out of pocket (since we had annual passes to Sea World and Disney), so while Tara had fun on the rides, I had fun finding different perspectives on the things around us. Wildlife was a bit more interesting there too – alligators, turtles, armadillos, and more types of birds than I can name!

There were times when Tara said I liked my camera more than her! I feel over the past few months, I have not engaged in this hobby as much as I like. I have been feeling less than inspired. I need that one good event or outing to get my inspiration back.

I have tried many crafts over the years. I have completed quite a few counted cross stitch pieces. That required total concentration and once I was a mom, I never felt I had enough uninterrupted time! I still have pieces I would like to complete (before the fabric turns to dust!)

I’m just not a really “crafty” artistic person I guess. I admire people who can pick up a piece of fabric, or a bowl from a flea market and make something cool!

I like to cook too, but lately I’m uninspired in that area as well. That has more to do with the people in my household. Two different ends of the spectrum when it comes to likes and dislikes of food!

I’m beginning to think that “social media” is my new hobby!

What do you do in your spare time that makes you happy?

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If I wanted to get up at 6am, I would have set the alarm

Welcome to my new home, it is still under construction, so please bear with me!

StacyWhile I have been a bad (lax) blogger, it  seems as if Keeley has taken a hiatus from Random Tuesday Thoughts. I loved RTT because I could do a brain dump of all the things that weren’t enough material for a single post, but that were cluttering up my already too cluttered brain. My PA blogger friend, Stacy, at Stacy Uncorked is carrying on in Keeley’s absence. Yeah Stacy (queue clapping!)

  • I really wish pets come with a reset button. The dog, cat, and guinea pigs all think that if I am not up by 6am that something is wrong. In unison, they each make their own most annoying noise long and loud enough to compel me to get out of bed. I am tired, I don’t go to work until 3pm today, and then 9 1/2 hrs after I get home, I have to be back. I wanted to SLEEP in this morning, just a bit. Not happening, even with everyone feed and watered I can’t go back to sleep!
  • My mom is still recovering from her surgery and it is going much slower than she would like. This little taste of home nursing that I am getting, makes me appreciate the jobs of healthcare workers even more than I already did. Last evening was really for her, she can tolerate pain that would bring many of us to tears of agony. Five Percocets (over a 3 1/2 hr period, per Dr instructions) seemed to have helped. She is annoyed that she can’t do more to help herself. I totally do not mind. I am just struggling with having to be at work 8 hours out of the day. The surgery was not planned too far in advance, and I could not schedule extra time off.
  • The teen in the house is being pretty quiet and cooperative these days. She likes to sleep, oh and talk on the phone to her boyfriend for many minutes in the middle of the night. I guess teens are a bit like vampires. I am glad that he is on the AT&T network like us! Oh, and last month, 10,500 text message were sent by her alone. Thanks to my friend Art, he pointed out that there were only 42,300 minutes said month! All I can say is thank goodness for unlimited messaging and data plans!
  • Last week, on the second hottest day of the year, Tara and two other girls went to Vans Warped Tour. A very loud, outdoor concert in Camden, NJ. I drove them there, returned home, and later went back to pick them up! The reason I bring this up, is that I actually was given permission to take a photo of Tara (and friends) at 8:00am. This is honestly the first photo I have been allowed to take of Tara since she turned 14 in MARCH. There is sun glare, but I could not spend too much time setting up the shot, they barely stood still for this!  Tara is the one on the right.  No, the one in the middle did not wear ANY sunscreen, just saying!Before the Warped Tour
  • Had it not been so freaking hot, and if it was not the day my mother was discharged from the hospital I would have loved to spend some time in Philly (across the bridge from Camden) taking pictures. Instead, I resorted to a few pictures from the car!

Chinatown, murals, victor landing, philly, camden


I’m hopping on the Tuesday Train!
Joining in on Tiggerific Tuesday too!
Magical Mouse Schoolhouse

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2010 POD – Day #8 – Gift

Today, very quickly, I got to meet Rebecca from The Dusty Cellar. She was given an extra copy of Understanding Exposure by Bryan Peterson, and asked if I would like to have it. I have been hearing for years that it is an awesome book.  She even came out in the cold and wind to deliver it to me I have met so many nice folks since I started blogging, and this act of kindness is one more example!

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Quotable Sunday – Photography

Mothers Day Gift Ideas

Quotable Sunday is hosted by Toni @ A Daily Dose of Toni. Click on the button above and head on over and visit!

I was having trouble coming up with a topic today… could be that I slept in this morning, and the brain is not really awake yet!

In the end, I chose Photography. Photography is really what brought me to blogging, and if it weren’t for blogging, I would not be participating in Quotable Sunday. I also would have not made so many new on line friends, both near and far! I’ve picked the 1st as my favorite. There are times I leave the house without my camera (rarely) or without a memory card (more frequently) and then I get upset that I might miss the perfect moment. I need to realize that sometimes it is good to just enjoy and experience the moment and not always have the camera between me and that moment!

There will be times when you will be in the field without a camera. And, you will see the most glorious sunset or the most beautiful scene that you have ever witnessed. Don’t be bitter because you can’t record it. Sit down, drink it in, and enjoy it for what it is! ~DeGriff

A great photograph is a full expression of what one feels about what is being photographed in the deepest sense, and is, thereby, a true expression of what one feels about life in its entirety. ~Ansel Adams

The camera doesn’t make a bit of difference. All of them can record what you are seeing. But, you have to SEE.
Ernst Haas
No matter how advanced your camera you still need to be responsible for getting it to the right place at the right time and pointing it in the right direction to get the photo you want.
Ken Rockwell
Maybe because it’s entirely an artist’s eye, patience and skill that makes an image and not his tools.

Ken Rockwell

Have a great day!


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Photographs and Memories

When I was packing to move, it became apparent to me that I HAD to do something with all of the photographs that I have collected over the years.

I have always been into capturing memories, even before the digital age! All of Tara’s first four years are in photo form, as I did not have a digital camera until May 2001 (I think it was a 3.1 MP Hewlett Packard, that cost more than Tara’s awesome Nikon CoolPix 10MP!)

I do know over the years of trying to downsize, I have probably discarded some photos I wish now I had kept. Coming back home to PA has meant a great deal of “walking (virtually and physically) down memory lane”.

Scanning was going to be a winter project, but it is pretty evident that I will be need to find employment (more than 1 day a week) before too long much longer, and I figured while I have some free time on my hands, I had better get to this project.

I wish I was a scrapbooker, but I am not that clever or artistic, however, once the scanning is completed, I think I will be selecting the best of the best (memory wise, not always quality wise) and putting them in albums. I LOVE my digital photography and on line albums, but sometimes there is nothing like sitting down with an album of photos!

“Always remember to slow down in life; live, breathe, and learn; take a look around you whenever you have time and never forget everything and every person that has the least place within your heart.”

I came across a couple things that I really wanted to share.
Take for example this comparison of two pictures,Tara on the left and me on the right…. the similarities in age, clothing, location, hair, EVERYTHING really made me smile!

Here is one from the Franklin Institue when Tara was four. This I am sure was taken with a disposable camera, so not the best quality or composition. Apparently back then, they did not have the statue roped off.

and eight years later!

Have a great day!


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It’s a beautiful day in the neighborhood….

and I haven’t gone any further than Dunkin Donuts for a cup of coffee. Not highly motivated to get out and about since our plans to meet up with old friends fell through due to my friend’s sinus infection and her feeling crappy!

I cooked a nice breakfast casserole, I’ve done two loads of laundry, scooped a litter box, cleaned a guinea pig cage, straighted my room, scanned some old newspaper documents, and posted some stuff to my blogs. I also sat out on the patio and read a little bit of a new book, and while Princess wanted to lay in the sun. I really could sit out there all day (i.e. nap) if I had a lounge chair or hammock!

Now I am ready to take a little ride.. maybe to a nearby farm to see what produce they have and visit the animals. Nothing like the smell of “farm”, it’s nice an breezy and not humid… that’s a good day to visit.

I posted about our day in Lancaster County – HERE, and some additional photos HERE.

Maybe we will have a movie night tonight. Tara and I have not really watched a movie together since we moved. We seem to spend little time together in the living room, but go to our separate rooms on our computers, etc.
I thought I would play along with the Saturday 9 too.

Saturday 9: Heatwave

1. It’s July. How has the weather been where you are? Since moving home to PA from FL in June, the weather has been AWESOME. We have use the AC only one day. Today is in the low 80s, breezy and low humidity. It doesn’t get much better.

2. What is the best way for you to beat the heat? In FL, I loved to float in our pool, now since I don’t do public pools, if it were really hot and I wanted to get out, we would take in a movie!

3. “It’s not the heat, it’s the humidity.” Do you buy that? Humidity really makes things worse I think, but hot is still hot. I don’t care if it is dry heat in the desert, 114 is still 114, and too hot for me!

4. Do you like hot tubs or saunas? I like them both.. but haven’t been in either in some time.

5. What’s the hottest you’ve ever been? Hmmm, I’m guessing around 100. Strange thing about FL, it was hot and humid, but rarely broke 100.

6. How many times do you hit the beach in the summer? In FL we hit the beach frequently but not in the summer much, early spring was much nicer. We will probably go “down the shore” to Ocean City NJ, once this summer.

7. When you were a kid, what did you do in the summer? We camped a lot. Most weekends, and usually 3 weeks of vacation.

8. Surfing. Have you ever gotten on a surfboard? Body surf? No and No

9. What’s your favorite summer song? Summer, anything Beach Boys!

and how about the Photo Scavenger Hunt?

This week’s theme – ROCKS.
How about a mother and baby sea lion on some ROCKS at Sea World, Orlando

So what are YOU up to this weekend? I need to think of something for tomorrow, especially if the weather is this beautiful… hmmm Valley Forge Park perhaps? Stay tuned.

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Photo Challenge

I stumbled upon this photo challenge on “The Zen in You

Here are the rules…

1. Open the 4th photo folder of your computer.
2. Choose the 4th photo of that folder & publish it on your blog.
3. Explain the photo.

The 4th photo album happens to be my Disney’s Animal Kingdom folder. (For those that don’t know me from my blog, I live 1/2 hour from Disney, and much of my photography since we moved her in 2003 has been in and around Disney! I’m in the process of making a step up to a DSLR in the next few weeks and I’m EXCITED!

This picture was taken on 2/5/2006, my first day out at Disney with a new camera (Canon S2-IS), which was a nice step up for me from my small HP Point and Shot! This was the first time that I had noticed that boat…it is in Discovery River moored near the bridge that crosses from Discovery Island into Asia. I loved the colors and design of the boat, as well as the reflections in the water. The morning was very crisp, cool and clear!

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