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Blogging from A to Z Challenge: E is for… (#AtoZChallenge)

Welcome to my April 2021 Great and Powerful Blogging from A to Z Challenge!

I’ve revealed my theme (Photos and Stories), and once again, in spite of the best laid plans (who am I kidding, there were no plans, only aspirations) I am going to be blogging my theme letters on the fly.  So, here goes nothing!

Today, E is for Egg Container in the Fridge. Ok, yes. Seems like a weird thing to tell a story about, but it has a good one. Or am I setting your expectations high? This egg container in our fridge dates back to when we bought our house in Regina. We bought a fridge and it didn’t come with an egg container, I don’t know about you, but Kevin and I both grew up with and were used to fridge egg containers, not just putting the egg cartons in the fridge, man. We went back to the fridge store, or as some call it, the appliance store, and talked to someone there, who opened a floor model fridge and handed us the fridge container. At least, that’s the way I remember it.

When we moved from Regina, I packed the egg container. Maybe I should have left it with the fridge for the new house owners, but I don’t feel guilty about it. We fought for that container! I think Kevin may have commented on my snatching the egg container. I say, whatever. It moved with us from Regina to Victoria, and then from our first fridge here to our current fridge.  It’s possible we ended up with two at our previous house as the fridge there may have had one, but when we moved in here we had to buy a new fridge and guess what? No fridge egg container. What a weird world it is where new fridges don’t have a place to out your eggs.

Thanks for visiting my 2021 A to Z Challenge – Letter E.  You can find links to more blogs participating in this challenge at A to Z 2021 Challenge Master List (Google Docs).

Blogging from A to Z Challenge: D is for… (#AtoZChallenge)

Welcome to my April 2021 Great and Powerful Blogging from A to Z Challenge!

I’ve revealed my theme (Photos and Stories), and once again, in spite of the best laid plans (who am I kidding, there were no plans, only aspirations) I am going to be blogging my theme letters on the fly.  So, here goes nothing!

Today, D is for Dining Room Table. This is Kevin’s familys dining room table. I asked Kevin if he remembered a time before this table, and he said no. It was always in his house growing up. Kevin’s mom and dad built their house, and Kevin’s remembrance was that his mom and dad took money they got for their wedding and bought this table, it’s five chairs, and a China cabinet, which we also have now. This table is amazing, it has so many leaves it can fit fourteen people which may not seem like a lot to some, but to me it’s a lot of people to have at one dinner table. The trick is to make sure the middle leg doesn’t get shoved out of alignment when putting in the extra leaves.

I wonder, why do dining room tables come with four armless chairs and one with arms. Or sometimes, I guess, six chairs, one with arms? Who gets the chair with the arms? And is that the best way to be comfortable while eating? It’s a mystery.

This table has sadly not been used much lately. The past year has out a kibosh on any dinner plans with friends and family, as it has for so many. But we are looking forward to a full table sometime in the future once it is safe for us to get together again.

 

Thanks for visiting my 2021 A to Z Challenge – Letter D.  You can find links to more blogs participating in this challenge at A to Z 2021 Challenge Master List (Google Docs).

Blogging from A to Z Challenge: C is for… (#AtoZChallenge)

Welcome to my April 2021 Great and Powerful Blogging from A to Z Challenge!

I’ve revealed my theme (Photos and Stories), and once again, in spite of the best laid plans (who am I kidding, there were no plans, only aspirations) I am going to be blogging my theme letters on the fly.  So, here goes nothing!

Today, C is for Coffee mugs.  This piece is part of my one of my assignments for the Creative Writing course I just finished.  I am hoping to do more of this kind of writing as I get my act together here!  The pictures, those are all new.

Coffee coffee coffee.  I confess, I need coffee in the morning, first thing.  Well, after I get up and feed the cats.  Cats need to be fed first or there will be no peace for coffee.  Then coffee. I am so glad we bought this new machine with so many fancy coffee options.  So glad that I stick to the traditional Americano, customized so it just fits my favourite mug.  No experimentation for me.  I mean, I’ve had enough change over the past year, I don’t need to seek out more.  The rules exist for a reason.

I take one sip before I meditate, just enough to dust off the brain and ready it for mindfulness.   Then a few  more sips while I write my morning pages.  Ah… I wake up feeling tired and foggy and like I’m catching a cold, but coffee brings me back so I can face the day.   Then, the routine continues, rules dictating a second cup.  A second cup with breakfast on work days, a second cup to savour on its own on weekends.  Then eventually  a third.  On weekends after lunch, on weekdays before my first morning meeting of the day.  All easy now that I work from home.  No commute, no lineups at the coffee place, no shelling out money for an expensive latte (‘cause I can’t just drink regular coffee at a coffee place…yes I have weird rules.)  No.  All at home, and all in my favourite mug.

The rules will never allow me to drink coffee at home out of another mug. It reminds me of my grandmother and  the prairies, from a pottery store (Hanson and Ross) in the valley, south of where, my brother, parents, and i lived in Regina.  My grandparents visiting from the states, bought these mugs took them away and probably used them.  Then when my grandma passed away, the mugs came to me, since then, my go to for the comfort that wakes me and keeps me going.

I can’t believe I still have all four of them, sitting now with me as I write, one watching me now and lending its quiet support during my evening coffee, the rules allowing me one more post work as I wind down and head into relaxation.  I wonder how long I will be able to indulge in this caffeinated joy before my aging body refuses to sleep for reasons outside the realm of work related stress and worry.

Thanks for visiting my 2021 A to Z Challenge – Letter C.  You can find links to more blogs participating in this challenge at A to Z 2021 Challenge Master List (Google Docs).

Blogging from A to Z Challenge: B is for… (#AtoZChallenge)

Welcome to my April 2021 Great and Powerful Blogging from A to Z Challenge!

I’ve revealed my theme (Photos and Stories), and once again, in spite of the best laid plans (who am I kidding, there were no plans, only aspirations) I am going to be blogging my theme letters on the fly.  So, here goes nothing!

Today, B is for Bookcase in the office.

Remember yesterday’s A is for artwork in the bedroom? Well, here is B, a book case that was also in dad’s old office before he moved to his new office. I confess, technically we probably shouldn’t have this, but dad had been in that office for what, thirty years? And this piece probably would have been junked eventually, and quite frankly it’s a really cool book case, and we like books, so…somehow it found its way into our old house in Regina.

At first glance, it looks like it would be hard to move, with all that glass. But it actually comes apart into small, manageable pieces. The top, the bottom (which had wheels I think), and each glassed in shelf unit. And there are four drawers at the bottom too, as you can see, which also come apart. So actually, the whole thing fits easily into any car. The glass doors slide up and back on to of each shelf so all the shelves can be open or closed. Right now, it contains the remainders of my bass player collection and my linguistics book collection. Both of which will make sense when I tell you I used to be a bass player and a linguist. There is another couple of stories there for another time!

I have no idea how old this piece is, or how long it was in the office my dad had for all those years. It came with the office as far as we know, there were probably pieces like this in all the offices and they may date to the time when the building he worked in was a women’s college, complete with dorm rooms.

Thanks for visiting my 2021 A to Z Challenge – Letter B.  You can find links to more blogs participating in this challenge at A to Z 2021 Challenge Master List (Google Docs).

Blogging from A to Z Challenge: A is for… (#AtoZChallenge)

Welcome to my April 2021 Great and Powerful Blogging from A to Z Challenge!

I’ve revealed my theme (Photos and Stories), and once again, in spite of the best laid plans (who am I kidding, there were no plans, only aspirations) I am going to be blogging my theme letters on the fly.  So, here goes nothing!

Well, this has been one long day.  I almost didn’t get this done because, as always when I do this challenge, I have the best laid plans to, well, plan, but I never do.  It’s always by the seat of my pants (sweat pants these days).  But, hopefully I will post this before the end of my day and I will slowly but surely catch up by the weekend!

So, without further ado, A is for Artwork hanging in the bedroom.  No, not “bedroom art”…that would be not what this blog is all about.  But this artwork has a story, as will all of my little images and stories this month.

So, this is my last minute, not so well thought out attempt to present some photos of a piece of art hanging in the bedroom.  I took a break between work things to take some pictures today, but should probably have thought things out a bit more. But, it is what it is, so some people say, and you get the idea.  Different views presented to accompany my story.  A story, a short story, about a piece of art that used to hang in my father’s office.

It was an office in an old building he was moving out of into a new building, part of the Faculty of Fine Arts move at the university he taught at.  When he moved offices, he gave us a few things he didn’t want to move, but didn’t want to keep either at the time.  This piece has a weird story.  It was painted by a visual arts student, a woman, who’s name dad doesn’t’ remember, and who asked him to keep it for her and then never returned for it.  That’s it.  I always loved it – it hung above his desk waiting for an owner who never returned (lesson learned to always sign your paintings!)

We took it when he moved offices, and for the life of me I can’t remember where we put it back in our old house in Regina – probably in the bedroom.  But I do remember it hung in my office in our last house here in Victoria, and now hangs in the master bedroom again.  It’s a fairly sizable piece, so needs a bit of wall space and we are lucky we have that!

And now, here are a few glimpses of this work of art, complete with Jasper making sure he doesn’t miss out.  I didn’t get overly creative this time around, but this is only the beginning.  If you have any suggestions for me as to techniques or strategies for my photos for the rest of my letters, let me know…this is about me working on that creativity!

Thanks for visiting my 2021 A to Z Challenge – Letter A.  You can find links to more blogs participating in this challenge at Letter A, A to Z 2021 Challenge Master List (Google Docs).

Blogging from A to Z Challenge: 2021 Theme Reveal!

Welcome to the Great and Powerful Blogging from A to Z 2021 Theme Reveal!

This is the 12th year of the challenge, and I’ve been a participant since 2014.  Every year I choose a theme, and every year I blog it on the fly.  Like last year, I am starting to write my posts now.  But I planned that last year, and the COVID panic of my work life meant I was back to posting on the fly anyway, so we will see where we go from here.

Before I reveal my 2020 theme, here are themes from challenges past:

  • 2014:  I blogged about our house, and the befores and afters of the renos we did and changes we made after buying it.
  • 2015: I blogged about interesting places in Victoria (all close to home).
  • 2016: I blogged about learning to use my DSLR
  • 2017: I blogged about my ‘hood in Welcome to James Bay!
  • 2018: I blogged about the wonderful world of wabi-sabi in photographs.
  • 2019:  I blogged about A picture-story a day (in the life, so to speak)
  • 2020: I blogged about female photographers

And now, my Blogging from A to Z Challenge 2021 Theme!  Drum roll please…..

Photos and Stories

This year, I have been taking photography and creative writing classes, so to challenge me on both, I am setting a goal of an A-Z of photos of things around our house/yard with stories about them, perhaps true, perhaps made up.  And not just one photo, but I want to take a series of photos of each thing from a variety of perspectives to push myself in my photography too.

I have most of my list, but I am not posting it yet as it may (and will likely) change!

So, I will see you on April 1st for my first post!

This post approved by Elliot.

Blogging from A to Z Challenge: Z is for…Annie Leibovitz (#AtoZChallenge)

Welcome to my April 2020 Great and Powerful Blogging from A to Z Challenge!

So, we are coming full circle, in a way, ending as it began, with someone most everyone will know.  Annie Leibovitz (see what I did there…z…) (1949-) is “a celebrated American photographer best known for her engaging and dramatic celebrity portraits. Adept at capturing her subject’s personality and inner life, her images reflect intimate or staged moments that reveal the playful and expressive aspects of her sitters” (http://www.artnet.com/artists/annie-leibovitz/)

I absolutely love Leibovitz’s photography.  Sometimes intimate, sometimes stark, sometimes playful, sometimes bizarre.  If you don’t know it, I am sure you will find something about it that draws you in.

There are LOTS of resources out there on Annie Leibovitz beyond what I’ve included here, so go off and search for more!

Thanks for coming to visit my A to Z posts this year.  Not as in depth as I was at first anticipating they would be, but I am SO glad I did them and made it through considering what April brought me at work.  And I learned a lot about women in photography I didn’t know before too.

Resources:

Annie Leibovitz at Wikipedia

Annie Leibovitz at ArtNet

Annie Leibovitz on the shots that made her

Annie Leibovitz at Vanity Fair

Thanks for visiting my 2020 A to Z Challenge – Letter Z.  You can find links to more blogs participating in this challenge at A to Z 2020 Challenge Master List (Google Docs).

Blogging from A to Z Challenge: Y is for…Zaida Ben-Yusuf (#AtoZChallenge)

Welcome to my April 2020 Great and Powerful Blogging from A to Z Challenge!

Zaida Ben-Yusuf (1869-1933) was a American photographer.  She was “noted for her artistic portraits of wealthy, fashionable, and famous Americans during the turn of the 19th–20th century. ” (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zaida_Ben-Yusuf)  “Although Ben-Yusuf’s unusual background and stylish appearance undoubtedly attracted attention in New York, it was her innovative camera work that drew many of the city’s most high-profile residents to her studio: actors, writers, painters, sculptors, politicians and other notables.”  (https://web.archive.org/web/20100724060754/http://www.america.gov/st/arts-english/2008/May/20080429174122GLnesnoM0.9014856.html)

Not a lot out there about her, but please explore the few links I was able to fine.  And, yes, you might have thought I could have used Zaida Ben-Yusuf for “Z”, but no…you will just have to wait until tomorrow to see who pops up there!

Self-portrait of American photographer Zaida Ben-Yusuf

Resources:

Zaida Ben-Yusuf at Wikipedia

Zaida Ben-Yusuf

New Exhibition Resurrects Legacy of Groundbreaking Photographer

Thanks for visiting my 2020 A to Z Challenge – Letter Y.  You can find links to more blogs participating in this challenge at A to Z 2020 Challenge Master List (Google Docs).

Blogging from A to Z Challenge: X is for…Jessie Tarbox Beals (#AtoZChallenge)

Welcome to my April 2020 Great and Powerful Blogging from A to Z Challenge!

Jessie Tarbox Beals  (1870-1942) was a American photographer (although she was born in Canada), and is known as “the first published female photojournalist in the United States and the first female night photographer.  She is best known for her freelance news photographs, particularly of the 1904 St. Louis World’s Fair, and portraits of places such as Bohemian Greenwich Village.  Her trademarks were her self-described “ability to hustle” and her tenacity in overcoming gender barriers in her profession.” (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jessie_Tarbox_Beals)

Yes, this is where I fudge it – but there is an “X” there!   Being a photojournalist, and a woman, in the early 1900s had to have been very challenging.  “Photojournalism was physically demanding, often risky work, but Beals could be seen carrying out assignments in her ankle-length dresses and large hats, with her 8-by-10-inch glass plate camera and 50 pounds of equipment in tow.”  (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jessie_Tarbox_Beals)  Now, here are a couple of images from this trailblazer, in the public domain.

Jessie Tarbox Beals

Olympic Marathon participants, Len Tau (left) and Jan Mashiani of the Tswana tribe of South Africa

Resources:

Jessie Tarbox Beals at Wikipedia

Jessie Tarbox Beals at the Library of Congress

Jessie Tarbox Beals at Britannica

Jessie Tarbox Beals at the Howard Greenberg Gallery

Jessie Tarbox Beals at the New York Historical Society Museum and Library

Thanks for visiting my 2020 A to Z Challenge – Letter X.  You can find links to more blogs participating in this challenge at A to Z 2020 Challenge Master List (Google Docs).

Blogging from A to Z Challenge: W is for…Margaret Watkins (#AtoZChallenge)

Welcome to my April 2020 Great and Powerful Blogging from A to Z Challenge!

Margaret Watkins (1884–1969) was a Canadian photographer who was “a photographer of portraits and landscapes, still lifes, street scenes and works of early advertising and commercial designs. ” (https://www.gallery.ca/collection/artist/margaret-watkins).  “She lived a life of rebellion, rejection of tradition, and individual heroism; she never married, she was a successful career woman in a time when women stayed at home, and she exhibited eroticism and feminism in her art and writing.” (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Margaret_Watkins)

I love the photos I have seen of hers – her most famous image is The Kitchen Sink, literally just that.  Reminds you that anything is fair game in photography – which is great, given that for the past month or two, photography at home has become all the rage!  And now, here are a couple of her works in the public domain:

The Kitchen Sink

Margaret Watkins, self portrait

Resources:

Margaret Watkins at Wikipedia

Margaret Watkins at the National Gallery of Canada

The Kitchen Sink by Margaret Watkins

Seduced by Modernity: The Photography of Margaret Watkins

Margaret Watkins at ArtNet

Thanks for visiting my 2020 A to Z Challenge – Letter W.  You can find links to more blogs participating in this challenge at A to Z 2020 Challenge Master List (Google Docs).