Friday, April 25, 2008

Pineapple in Paradise

See the pineapple plant? Well, that little baby started from a pineapple top I put in the ground four years ago! FOUR YEARS AGO! It seems a lifetime ago!

I had planted a dahoon holly tree and thought it needed some company. I remember the day, a Saturday in April, 2004, because I wrote about it in my garden journal. The dahoon holly was just barely two feet tall at the time, just a little twig of a thing, and it looked so lonely there next to the clothesline pole.

I just happened to have a pineapple I'd purchased from the grocery store for an upside down pineapple rum cake I was making. So, the next day, Sunday, I decided I would see if what they said was true: that you could put the top of the pineapple in the ground and a plant would grow.

Well, gosh and by golly, it is true! Today the dahoon holly is well over four feet tall (it's a slow grower) and lookee here! lookee here! My pineapple plant is growing a pineapple!

Last year I was utterly convinced that I would never see a pineapple. I had pretty much given up hope. I checked my garden journal each year to remind myself when I'd planted it, and nothing. Then, this year, I didn't check my garden journal for I had decided it was pointless to do so. And, look what happened!

I am just so impressed with Mother Nature! It's sort of like cloning, if you ask me. All it takes is the remnant of the fruit and after time goes by, you get the same fruit all over again! My goodness! But, that does seem quite miraculous to me!

I don't know how long it takes for the fruit to get big enough to eat, but stay tuned! And, you can be sure I'll be digging out my upside down pineapple rum cake recipe!

Monday, April 14, 2008

4 x 4 FRIDAY

Rebecca is 79-years-old and has been one of my theatre-family friends since 1992. She commented at one of our many get-togethers that we are "Framily." There's a group of us who have known each other for ages and we gather for each other's birthdays, anniversaries, baptisms and funerals.

I discovered a weekly art competition, "4 x 4 Friday" and found the current theme inspirational, so I put this little diddy together for this week's theme, FAMILY.

Visit to learn all about it! Meanwhile, enjoy my "art."

Easy Come,
Easy Go

One day this rooster showed up at the office door. I was certain he belonged to someone, but how do you find the owner of a rooster?
Beats me!
So, I had fun watching him as he pecked around the parking lot, looking for something to eat.
A week went by and I figured that when I returned after the weekend he'd be gone. But, on Monday morning, there he was! So, off I went to get some chicken feed from the local feed store
He hung around for nearly a month and I managed to take a few pictures of him that will make their way into my photo album, but one Friday morning when I came to work, he was gone. When I asked the boss if he'd seen the rooster, he said, "Oh, some guy showed up this morning before you arrived and claimed the bird was his."
So, my little friend was taken away before we could say goodbye.
I have his photos, though, and I'm glad he visited for a while. Maybe it's better when friends come in and out of your life unexpectedly like that. There's a kind of joy in those new relationships, and a special kind of sadness when they're over, but the memories are yours to keep, along with the pictures. So, like the title says, "Easy Come, Easy Go."

Friday, April 4, 2008

On the road
to the weekend!

I was just sifting through the computer folders that hold my many photographs. Sometimes I'm amazed at how good some of these pictures are. It's a funny thing with taking photos; the photographer "sees" one thing and the camera "sees" another. It's when the two are the same that the art part of photography occurs for me.

This photo I shot on my way to work one morning in March. Along Viele Road there are horse ranches and high zoot homes on 0ne-acre lots and it's really a beautiful road to drive, especially early in the day when there's not much traffic. Anyway, it was a foggy morning and out of the mist came these geese, just tooling along, oblivious of the rest of the world. I had the camera with me, so I pulled off to the side of the road, got out and started shooting. With a digital camera, you can never be sure what you've got until you get it up on the computer screen. Imagine my surprise when I saw this cool shot! So, here it is for all the world to see! And, now I'm off for the weekend, like the geese in the picture ... not quite sure where I'm going, but really joyful to be headed that way! Cheers to all!

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

A nostalgic moment ...

As long as I can remember, I have loved ballet. When I was a little girl, maybe five or six years old, my mother enrolled me in Mrs. O'Laker's dancing school in my hometown of Hopewell, Virginia. And, how I loved going to ballet class! It was my escape from the pain of childhood ...

We had to wear black leotards and pink tights with pink ballet slippers and my mother got me a little pink bag with the silhouette of a ballet dancer on it. I can clearly remember my excitement before each class, knowing I would get to wear my "dancer's clothes" and do plié and jeté, and at the end of class I could try to do a pirouette (to whirl or spin). I remember the day I did a complete pirouette and Mrs. O'Laker didn't correct me or scold me for incorrect technique --- It was a day of complete and utter joy!

I've taken ballet classes off and on for years. Today, some 50 years since that first pirouette, I am still doing ballet. Twice a week I don my black leotard, black tights and my pink ballet slippers and I take class with retired ballerinas who dance much better than me. But, one thing is certain: no one dances more enthusiastically than me! I may not be able to do double pirouettes because of an old ankle injury, but the single I can do is done with as much precision and good technique as I can muster!

I don't have any illusions that I'll dance on a stage, for that's not why I do it. I do it because it feels so wonderful! I love the barre work and I am challenged by the center work. For the hour or 90 minutes of class, I am so busy thinking about which way my foot should point, is my elbow up, are my shoulders down, am I holding my stomach in and lifting up out of the rib cage that I simply don't have time to think about anything else. Ballet is as good for my head as it is for my body and I simply cannot imagine life without it!

The photograph above was recently given to me by an aunt. I'm the tall one. The little girl is my cousin, Sharon, and we were "ballerinas" one day while our mothers were doing whatever it was they did when they got together. The little boy is my brother, Jim, and he is still a superhero and cat lover. He has four cats at his apartment and has always had cats ... as long as I remember.

I have a little mobile hanging over my desk of a dancing fairy with a pink ribbon tied around her waist and little charms with these words:

There ARE shortcuts to happiness
and DANCING is one of them!