Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Autumn snow on the Halloween pumpkin

One Halloween night many many years ago, a very creative teenager made two collars from old belts, added a length of chain connecting the two, harnessed his two younger siblings with more chain and a leash and terrorized an inner city neighborhood ("terrorized" is probably too harsh but it's a good word to use for a Halloween post). I wish cameras were as common then as they are now. You'll have to use your imagination to picture the scene I described. I'm certain we would have took first place in any costume contest.

Halloween is one of my favorite holidays, but some view it as anti-Christian and even go so far to say that it's demonic, what with all the devils and witches and signs of death. (If that's your view, then please discuss it somewhere else.) I could mention the origins of this spooky holiday but I don't feel it's necessary. And I think it's safe to say that most of y'all feel the same way I do about it.

I don't recall the number of times I've watched "It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown!" But I can recall that night, a long time ago, when my brother and I were transformed into wild dogs leashed to a one-eyed, hunchbacked master with a whip, whose idea got us enough Halloween candy to last all winter!

I don't normally use themes for postings, but did this time. So with fall and Halloween in mind, here's a few pictures.

The local park hosts a scarecrow contest. I took a picture of two that I thought were pretty good.

They judged the scarecrows and I didn't get a chance to take a picture of the winner. In my opinion, Elvis should've won, after all, he's still the King.

I'm sure y'all know what a tough plant is, and probably grow a few in your garden. This is a wild aster, and as you can tell, it's one tough plant.

Notice there's nothing but grass growing along the berm, in either direction.

We had a prominent weather occurrence here today; the first snow.

Winter squash??

Winter mums?

Peace babies.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Good Times

A couple of weeks ago, three garden bloggers met for the first time. This is a short synopsis of that encounter.

Ms. Tina, husband Mr. Fix-it, and son Jimmy drove north to visit family in Maine. Ms. Tina's route was going to take her within a 45 minute drive of my place, and even closer to Ms. Cindy's. Unfortunately, we weren't able to spend time in either my or Ms. Cindy's garden, but that didn't prevent us from forming a special bond that will last a lifetime.

We all met at Bob Evans, a popular restaurant just off I-79, and a convenient stopping point for Ms. Tina and her family. I have a better photo (see below) of John, but in this one, clockwise from the left: Handsome hands of John, Darlin little Lillian who was such an angel the entire time; Pretty Ms. Cindy; handsome young Jimmy; handsome young Mr. Fix-it; and Pretty Ms. Tina.

Here's a better picture of John. I think he's showing Ms. Tina the proper grip for holding pruning shears.

I wish we would've had more time, but with Ms. Tina and family still having to drive further north, we had to cut short a most memorable visit.

That's Mr. Fix-it, Ms. Tina and Sir Jimmy behind me in their family pick-up, as we merge onto I-79. I only had to drive about 45 miles before my exit; I think they had another 500 to go before theirs.

We passed along a few plants, heirlooms perhaps, that will be planted in each of our gardens. And these will take root, establishing themselves in our gardens, and in turn, allowing each of us to be established in each other's hearts as well.

God bless you and your family Ms. Tina, and you and yours Ms. Cindy. I know we'll meet again soon.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Houston, we have a problem.

It appears I'll not have my computer back for several more days, if then. My tech friend says when he tries to load the operating system, the screen goes blank. Now I'm really depressed. Things don't ever go as you think they should. Or do they?

Breakfast went well the other mornin.

My daughter was pleased with her performance in the middle school's band concert the other night.

This black gum tree in my backyard is always the star of the fall color show.

And Slippery Rock Creek knows how to look pretty in autumn.

The clump of summer farewells (fall asters) I got from my Mother's Kentucky garden years ago has done very well in my Pennsylvania garden.

And lastly, this rock sure has me convinced that it turned out exactly as it should have.

So I reckon things turn out the way they're supposed to most of the time. It's just those other times that upset me. I'm sure y'all know the feelin.


Monday, October 13, 2008


I missed out on learning how to overhaul an engine. Due largely to the fact that I've never been what's known as "mechanically inclined." Oh, I can change plugs, put a new air filter on, and depending on where it's located, a new oil filter. But I've never taken the guts out, things like crank shafts, pistons, rings, cylinders, and junk like that. If it matters, I have done it on a much larger scale, working with a crew of five or six others when I was with Tennessee Gas Pipeline.

My computer is getting an overhaul this week. It's five years old, and beginning to show signs of aging. At least that's how I see it. It corrupted my administrator profile recently. I created a new one, but had a helluva time finding my old desktop, luckily, a friend from work is much more capable of overhauling computers than I am at overhauling small engines. Most of y'all probably know IT folks where you work, or maybe you're even one yourself. I just know the basics; put a new filter in (install something from a CD), or add plugs (download updates).

I take it in Thursday, and when I get it back Sunday, it'll have a new operating system. No, not Vista, or one of the other as of now obscure ones, but Windows XP Pro. I'll have 2 gigs of RAM vs. 1, the new internal 500 gigabyte hard drive my brother-in-law installed recently will be the new main drive. And it'll have all the other necessities. If I can figure out where to drill the holes, I'd like to run a direct cable connection vs. wireless.

I wanted to get a post in before Thursday's shutdown. And I reckon I've accomplished that. Oh, I still have the family computer to fall back on, but I have to wait in line, and I'm not used to that.

Happy Fall!

My exit

And by the way, visit this page over at Dave's and add your fall color link.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Photo Show

These are a few of the "Saturday Jam" folks at Phil's Woodshed. That's Phil wearing the black hat.

Dirty blade.

Clean blade.


Autumn color.

Larva of the Isabella tigermoth, better known as wooly worm, which we all know isn't a worm but a caterpillar. And it predicts a harsh start to winter, with milder conditions for mid-winter, ending with harsh conditions once again (85% accuracy, according to Wooly

Hip rose?

Peace babies.

Monday, October 6, 2008

**##*$&^^, or am I getting used to this??

I find it odd that I'm beginning to feel rather loose and free lately, almost as if some type of burden has been lifted. I'm not posting from my computer, it's still not computing; I now have to wait my turn on the family computer. When I went back to college in 2002, I ordered a desktop PC for my personal use, both as a student and a writer. It's upstairs, in a spare room I use for an office, the muse lives there also (although I'm beckoning her downstairs as I write this; she's a bit reluctant).

I've always had complete freedom with my computer, and rarely is anyone else using it. But might this freedom, also be a kind of dependence? I'll have to use outside resources to write my article for next week's column while my computer is being repaired. No, I'll probably not revert back to pen and paper, but for the guts of it, I'll have to "go outside." Imagine that, a garden writer writing from the garden instead of from the computer. I think it'll be interesting to see what the muse has to say.

And one important request: Please keep Tina in your thoughts as she prepares for a long drive north to visit Cindy and me.

Peace babies.

Sunday, October 5, 2008


It appears that I have major computer problems on my desktop computer. I don't know when I'll be able to post a "real" update here.

I will be checking in from time to time and will still be able to visit y'all.

So, wish me luck that I'll get the problem solved soon!