Category Archives: Photos

Shoe Review

I first started seeing those woven elastic shoes a couple of years ago, maybe longer. It seems really recent but I know it’s been longer than it feels like. At first I thought they might be one of those things that most people either love or hate and get all worked up about way out of proportion and I wasn’t sure which side I would be on. Then last 4th of July I noticed my sister-in-law was wearing a pair of them and I asked her about them. She said that they are the only kind of shoes she wears now.

My sister-in-law and I have very little in common, fashion-wise. She is more conventionally fashionable than I am. (I’m more like, “Oh, that’s fashionable now? Get it away from me.”) But anyway, the shoes – I’m always looking (usually unsuccessfully) for comfortable shoes that look appropriate with dresses and some of the more recent styles of these are fairly attractive. The earlier styles I saw looked a little tacky or clunky to me. So, I’ve been curious about them and finally got around to trying a pair about a month ago and then bought two more pair.

Shoe selfies are a bit awkward so these are not the best shoe modeling photos.

Stretch shoes, silver, pink

This first pair is Bernie Mev brand. They look more grey than silver in this photo but in real life they’re definitely sparkly silver with a subtle bit of pink trim. They feel like house shoes, very comfortable and kind of flimsy. The sole is very thin and it almost feels wrong to wear them outside the house.

Stretch shoes, multi-color

This multi-colored pair I actually saw at Walmart a few weeks before I bought the silver ones and thought about buying them but didn’t. I’m not a snob about Walmart generally but I am a snob about buying their shoes or any cheap shoes but I went back and bought these. In some ways they are actually better shoes than the silver ones. The sole is sturdier, like an athletic shoe sole, and they have a very thick cushiony insole. Downsides: The heel piece is very stiff and uncomfortable. I bought stick-on heel pads and that fixed that problem. The other thing about them is they are rather tight with a very strong elasticity. They’re fine when I’m standing or walking but when I’m sitting down, not putting weight on my feet they put the squeeze on my toes.

Stretch shoes, navy blue

This navy blue pair, received just a couple of days ago, are Sketchers brand and they’re the best of the three – sturdy enough sole, cushy insole, and just right stretch. I’m trying to resist the temptation to get one or two more pair of these. The “bronze” ones would be very useful. They would go with a lot of different clothes. But I tell myself I need to wait a while and see how well these hold up in the long run.

I’m not ready to give up all other shoes because I still like most of my other shoes but I can really understand why someone would want to wear these exclusively. I can see myself wearing them more and more.

Small Wildflower

In my world there is no such thing as “just a weed.” Nearly everything is interesting if you really look at it.

Small wildflower

Lame Excuse Post

Yesterday we were having connectivity issues. Today I have a lot of other things I need to do. And, to be honest, I’m really almost completely out of blogging steam. Should I make fun of Donald Trump? I feel like I should be horrified that he might be our next president but I am more relieved that Ted Cruz will not be. No matter who wins I am going to get a t-shirt with Obama’s picture on it and the words, “Miss me yet?” and wear it on Inauguration Day.

But enough of that; I don’t do politics. (except when I’ve got nothing better to say and I can’t resist the temptation) What else? The weather? It’s kinda nice and kinda stinks. Afternoons this week have been beautiful and perfect but mornings are too cold for May. I want to wear a dress! A cool breezy summer dress and I want to wear it all day, not just for a couple of hours in the afternoon. I can’t really explain to you how badly I want that.

Here’s another nice spring photo. I actually took this one about a month ago.

Sunburst locust

Spring Woods

My yard is a wonderful place.

Path through the woods, spring

Each of these lovely little flowers is about half an inch to five-eighths of an inch across.

Tiny yellow flowers

If you want to be truly happy learn to love these again, like when you were little.

Dandelion

Dogwoods

Dogwoods

One of the dogwood trees in my front yard. Dogwoods remind me of my mom and of going to the Dogwood Festival in Siloam Springs years ago, back when it was still interesting and fun.

Creatures in the Mist

With what strange, unseen beings do we share our world? Scientists and engineers at the University of Eyewannabuleev have invented a full spectrum image analyzing device that, for the first time, reveals these creatures that have always surrounded us but have never been seen except, perhaps, by a gifted few.

[ahem] Not really. I’m just playing with the Deep Dream Generator again.

Trees in the fog

Trees in the fog w/Deep Dream Generator

Dream Generator

My son found this cool Internet toy – Deep Dream Generator. You upload a photo and strange things appear in it. I started with a pic of my cat. First the original image:

My cat, Dax

And here’s what Deep Dream Generator did with it:

My cat, with Deep Dream Generator

Don’t be surprised if I subject you to more of this weirdness. I took a picture of the fog this morning that I’m going to upload later.

A Photo Op That Got Away

Probably everyone who owns a camera has experienced missing what might have been a great photo. You would think that wouldn’t happen so much anymore with everyone having a phone with a built in camera that you have with you all the time but moments are only moments, here and gone before your hand can reach your pocket.

Yesterday afternoon we kept hearing sirens and for a while we just thought the local fire department were out playing with their toys doing practice runs to improve their response time but then we started hearing helicopters and finally we remembered grass fires are a thing around here and went outside to see if we could see smoke or fire or which direction all the trucks and helicopters were going.

We – husband, both sons, daughter-in-law, granddaughter and I – were standing out in the driveway and we heard a helicopter getting closer. It came up over the trees carrying one of those giant water “buckets”, right over our backyard – really close. It would have made a great photo and there were five of us out there with smart phones but not a one of us got a picture. We thought it might come back so we waited for a while but it never did.

We could hear it flying back and forth farther away and occasionally catch a glimpse of it through the trees. We thought we might be able to see it better if we walked down through the woods to the very back of our place. I ran into the house to get my actual camera and then followed everyone else. It was some distance from us still and we could just see it through the trees once in a while. I managed to get this not-very-good photo. The round thing below it in the trees is the bucket. My camera has a 20X zoom and I don’t think I was quite zoomed in all the way but probably more than half way so maybe about 12X?

Helicopter

We never did see smoke or fire. My sons decided to drive over that direction to see if they could see anything and the cops at the roadblock told them it was not that big of a fire; they were just using helicopters because the trucks couldn’t get to it. So… that was our Sunday afternoon redneck entertainment.

Fascinating Fungi

We have had an unusual amount of rain recently so, even in the “dead of winter” mushrooms and fungi have appeared literally overnight. I am fascinated with the growth at the base of this dead tree.

Fungi at the base of a dead tree

Here’s the other side of the same tree.

Fungi at the base of a dead tree

And a different species on an old stump. I see these a lot but usually not this big.

Fungi on an old stump

Warm Thoughts, Cold Days

I have had this picture on my desktop this month. I took it several years ago.

Oak leaf, autumn

A happy, peaceful, and overstuffed Thanksgiving to all my fellow Americans and to everyone else a happy and peaceful week and weekend.

November Tomato

We’re still getting a few tomatoes. I took this picture last Friday.

Tomato

As you can see this one has a huge crack but other than that these are really excellent tomatoes. The variety is “Celebrity”.

* * *

I’ve been busy this week and might be next week too so you’re going to be seeing mostly pictures here for a while and maybe a few links and maybe a few days with nothing at all but please keep coming back and please comment.

Autumn, Above and Below

It was very windy yesterday. Clouds started blowing in and soon it was almost overcast except for a couple of patches of blue.

Clouds

But then, a short time later they were all gone, not a cloud in the sky.

The leaves stayed mostly green throughout most of October and even into early November but now it’s finally starting to look like the Novembers we are used to seeing.

Fallen leaves

What is this?

It’s not a guessing game. I have no idea what this is and I’m hoping someone can tell me all about it or at least tell me what to Google. I often find these clinging to oak leaves or just laying on the ground but I’ve never seen them on the plant they originally grow on.

I have no idea what this is

It’s hollow on the inside except for a clump of fibers. I assume there are tiny seeds in there somewhere.

I have no idea what this is

So, Say Something Already

I have been thinking I need a weekly “open mike” post. But I’m not going to call it that because, of course, it’s only open as long as you’re nice and you’re not trying to sell anything. Think of this is my front porch. Come on up and chat.

Late Summer Flowers

There are two species of flowers in the photo. Most of them are moss rose. I have no idea what the yellow one is – just something I found at Lowe’s.

Where were we?

UPDATE: Yes, it’s Hot Springs, Arkansas. More about it later.

Here are a few vacation pictures. Can you guess where we went?

Alligators

Brick walking path

Stained glass skylight

Senic view

By the way, why is it that, it seems like, the purpose of “improvements” is to make websites run slower? Come on Flickr, you were better before you got so fancy.