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focus on life: reminisce - week 21

Sally at The Studio Sublime takes us back...far back in my our childhood for this weeks photography series "Focus on Life" prompt:

"Have you ever been in the middle of a busy day and all of a sudden you run across a certain baked good, candy, flower or an object catches your attention and you are sent right back to your childhood?

This week capture what takes you back to moments past and reminisce a little."

I'm living far away from my early years in Wisconsin, so most of the week I struggled with context in regards to childhood memories and my surroundings. Nothing triggered a thought until this morning when I reached for apple!

Next to cheese, apples are a pretty big deal in Wisconsin, at least as I remember it. We had a few apple trees in our backyard that stood in as a jungle gym. The apples were really yummy too.

I remember caramel apples as a special treat; bobbing for apples at the annual neighborhood Halloween party and pink applesauce that my Mom made by stirring cinnamon red hots in the applesauce while heating it on the stove. She served it along side juicy pork chops and scalloped potatoes.

And my very favorite memory was learning how to make apple pie from scratch, pie crust and all, in sixth grade, in our 1830's country kitchen in a house that used to be a stagecoach inn. Perfect for five kids, a sheep dog and a goose! Happy memories for sure!

Read more memories of the past at The Studio Sublime.


market day dish: vegetarian cold plate

I don't know about you, but I get lazy when the weather gets hot. What to do? Make a salad or two ahead of time and have it waiting for you after a hard day at work. I put together two salads (the weekend is a good time), then cut up fresh carrots and red bell peppers and bought a small container of fresh baby mozzarella balls. I store the cut veggies in fresh water in the fridge. Dinner is on...or lunch!

Cannellini Bean and Herb Salad, center. Lemon Cumin Potato Salad, upper right.

 Lemon Cumin Potato Salad doesn't show the fresh cilantro leaves because I didn't have any! I added a bit more cumin and crushed red chili pepper than what the recipe called for.

 Warm Cannellini Bean and Herb Salad tastes great cold too. I did not add the shrimp or olives listed in the recipe. Yew!


single snapshot: times five

I got carried away. Here's five versions of a single snapshot - after editing in Pixlr. Something about this photo caught my imagination. I'm standing in the early morning glow of a sunrise. I had just woken up.

Snapshot: Popularly defined as a photograph that is "shot" spontaneously and quickly, most often without artistic or journalistic intent. Common snapshot subjects include events of everyday life.

original shot - my wall paint is soft white in normal daylight.

Overlay:  darn, I forgot which one.  Border: none

Overlay: Flame - gap. Border - none

Overlay: grunge - blocked. Borders: old and perga. This one is my favorite.

Overlays: paper - butterflies, dotted, skirt. vignette - uneven. Border - cracked


focus on life: looking up - week 20

This week let’s change our perspective and look up!

There is a whole world above us that we sometimes miss seeing because we simply forget to look up.

Sally's prompt is "Looking Up" for week 20 of the year long photography series "Focus on Life" at The Studio Sublime. I've been looking up all week in the hopes of seeing a fab photo op, but no such luck!

It was on the last day this week when I stood outside the main entrance to the International Teaching Centre building (where I serve) and found what I was looking for. Clouds. I am enjoying the most expressive skies, during my stay in Israel, that I have ever seen. The cloud formations are amazing. I wonder if it has to do with being located on the coast? Maybe that huge body of water called the Mediterranean Sea influences the nature of the clouds.

Every time I look out at Haifa Bay, where the water meets the sky, my eyes, my heart and my body sigh with pleasure. This is my daily view, morning and evening, while walking to work and back to the flat, but only in portions, as the view is far more sweeping than what my camera can capture in one picture.

Just in case the bay photos aren't considered "looking up", lol, I looked above me and got a shot of another favorite thing, columns with clouds!

Speaking of looking up, you can see the sun setting over the Mediterranean in my birthday post Chocolate Mousse and Sunsets from earlier in the week. :-)

 I joined this blog group at week 8, (monochromatic experiment) in February, and I've had a blast ever since. I missed last week's prompt, "Hope", due to very long work days including the weekend! I'm back and can't wait to see all the fab eye candy photography over at Sally's blog The Studio Sublime


single snapshot

Snapshot: Popularly defined as a photograph that is "shot" spontaneously and quickly, most often without artistic or journalistic intent. Common snapshot subjects include events of everyday life.

For this snapshot, I'm riding on a local bus in Haifa and while the bus momentarily stopped, I snapped a quick shot of an Arab woman and Jewish man waiting for a city bus. The camera caught my route map reflected in the window, as well as a bit of the blue bus seat on the left.


around israel: chocolate mousse and mediterranean sunsets

This week I turned 55. Tonight I spent the evening watching the sunset, sitting on the Mediterranean coast in Haifa Israel with good friends, good food and laughter. I shot the photos below, all from the same spot, and then it rained so we dashed inside the cafe for hot chocolate and dessert. The waiters sang "Happy Birthday" in English. Chocolate mousse melted in my mouth. It was a pretty great day.

“When the ship approached the equator, I stopped going out on deck in the daytime. The sun burned like a flame. The days had shortened and night came swiftly. One moment it was light, the next it was dark. The sun did not set but fell into the water like a meteor."
                                                                    - Isaac Bashevis Singer
"How fine has the day been! How bright was the sun, How lovely and joyful the course that he run! Though he rose in a mist when his race he begun, And there followed some droppings of rain: But now the fair traveller's come to the west, His rays are all gold, and his beauties are best; He paints the skies gay as he sinks to his rest, And foretells a bright rising again."
                                                                               - Isaac Watts

This post is linked to Our World Tuesday where you can find lots of wonderful bloggers sharing their corner of the world as they see it!


single snapshot

Snapshot: Popularly defined as a photograph that is shot spontaneously and quickly, most often without artistic or journalistic intent. Common snapshot subjects include events of everyday life.

The sunrise one morning this week, from my bedroom window.


around israel: a garden nursery

Last month a friend invited me along on a shopping trip to a garden nursery knowing I would like a few plants for my balcony. Me being car-less and not to excited about riding the bus home with plants in tow, I jumped at the chance.

I wish I would have thought to ask the owner the shop name in English.

I would like to mention it's not easy to shop in Israel. All Jewish owned businesses close about 2 pm on Fridays and all of Saturday, the Sabbath. And guess when days off from work are? Yes, the same days — Fridays and Saturdays. As Israel is a Jewish state that pretty much covers most establishments and even transportation. No train, no sherut and no city bus to get around.

But there is a small population of Christian Arabs with shops who are open on Fridays and Saturdays, but closed on Sundays. And this nursery is one of them. I was impressed with the variety of flowers and landscaping plants available, and even recognized some of the flowers such as marigolds, pansies and geraniums. There were many unknown but wonderful flowers, and they remain unknown since I can't read labels in Hebrew. :-)

Hand painted dishes like these are one of my favorite things.

 Israeli has perfect climate for orchids!

I chose a simple flower box and they planted my selected flowers. All I had to do was water when I got it home! This is the newly planted photo.

My flower box today. Hoping the marigolds will come back. Trailing geranium on the right. Sweet pea going up.

I couldn't resist this sweet little bird bath to add a bit of charm.

This little balcony garden is just enough to tide me over for the next year.


focus on life: abstract - week 18

"What is abstract? The use of a visual language of form, color and line to create a composition which may exist with a degree of independence from visual references in the world."

I didn't quite understand the definition and no time this week for a new photo. This garden path was taken two weeks ago while cloudy and about to rain. It didn't look like this though!  :-)

"Details of the many walks I made along the crest have blurred, now, into a pleasing tapestry of grass and space and sunlight."  - Colin Fletcher

Enjoy more unique views of our world at The Studio Sublime - Week 18

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