Tag Archive | white

Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge: Red, White or Red & White ~

 I’ve always had a “thing” for horses, adoring them and wanting to have my own since I was old enough to know what they were.  In my teens, I once saw the performance of the world famous Lippizaner stallions on t.v. and was captured!  Many years later, when my husband’s sweet aunt passed away, we were fortunate enough to receive a gorgeous statue of a Lippizaner stallion and a book that tells the “tail” about them.  I’m not sure of the origins of this statue, but I adore it.

White Lippizaner stallion statue.

White Lippizaner stallion statue.

 

My husband bought me red roses for Valentine’s Day, and I made him Valentine’s heart cookies (red & white).

Red roses

Red roses

 

Valentine Heart Cookies

Valentine Heart Cookies

 

Last, but not least, is a splash of red and white in this photo originally taken last weekend and posted in my “Waterfall Wanderlust” post.  I just thought it fit the subject matter well enough to repost.

Skaneateles Creek in Skaneateles Falls, NY

Skaneateles Creek in Skaneateles Falls, NY

 

Thanks for another great challenge, Cee!  Until next time, TTFN!      Tamara Eckstadt

 

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Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge: Black & White or Sepia ~

Well, this week’s challenge was certainly a challenge for me!  I’ve never taken any photos in black and white, as this is all still very new to me.  I’ve spent the past few days really trying to get to know my camera, and what it can do for me… rather than just pointing it and shooting.  Here’s a few I came up with:

Stately looking building near downtown Syracuse, NY

Stately looking building near downtown Syracuse, NY

Front entrance of a Presbyterian church, downtown Syracuse, NY

Front entrance of a Presbyterian church, downtown Syracuse, NY

Same Presbyterian church in sepia, Syracuse, NY

Same Presbyterian church in sepia, Syracuse, NY

Mural on the side of a building, downtown Syracuse, NY

Mural on the side of a building, downtown Syracuse, NY

Closeup of the mural, downtown Syracuse, NY

Closeup of the mural, downtown Syracuse, NY

If you take a close look at the above two murals, they remind you of something, don’t they?  They’re painted in black and white on the side of a very non-descript building a few blocks from where I work.  Not the best part of town to be getting out in the middle of the street and taking photos, but I just found it so interesting.

What do you think?

Next week, red, white or red & white!

Until then… TTFN!    Tamara Eckstadt ~

Snow Morning Musings ~

 

Al clears our driveway

Al clears our driveway

As much as I wanted to take so many photos on my way to work this morning, driving etiquette and common sense told me not to let myself get distracted… which was hard!

It only took Al about an hour to get our driveway cleared out enough for me to plow my Impala through what snow was left and head out to work in Syracuse this morning.  First he had to use our Farmall cub plow tractor, but the snow was up over the plow and the tractor is a lightweight.  Then he used our snow thrower.  I was nervous leaving him behind to finish up, as the snow was heavy and he’s not getting any younger.  But he urged me to go ahead, with the promise that he would text me once he got to work… an hour later, I’m still nervously waiting for that text.

I drove slowly through the rural area, then into the suburban and urban city that is Syracuse.  The roads were not good, but more importantly, there was lots to observe!  First on the list was our neighbor about 2/10 down the road from us, who had obviously gotten a new puppy for Christmas.  I slowed down as I watched him and his Rottweiler pup come out of their front door and the pup took his first step into some real snow accumulation.  Yep, I watched and chuckled as I saw him jump from the step and the brown and black bundle disappeared into the more than foot of snow that had fallen!  My neighbor (and I) laughed as the puppy launched himself into the air over and over again trying to follow his master across the yard.  Each time I’d see a flash of black/brown and then he’d disappear into the white snow.

Continuing on my way, I began to notice all the various rural people out trying to dig themselves out enough to get their vehicles out of their driveways to get to work, or wherever… much as we had to do.  But the methods varied greatly.  Most used snow throwers responsibly.  But there’s always that one guy who throws the snow right into the road, usually right when I’m driving by.  There were plenty of shovels, too.  Some of them having to shovel driveways and sidewalks of great length.  Some, not so much.  Then there was the guy who was standing at the end of his unplowed driveway, scratching his head, holding a BROOM.  That got a chuckle.  I also observed a woman whose husband had obviously just plowed out their driveway, only to have her come down and “somehow” end up in the deep snow he’d just plowed out.  She’d missed the opening and was sitting in her car with a curious look on her face.

As my drive became more suburban, I saw methods change.  There was a guy who had some sort of morphed tractor/plow thingy, with an immense rotating tiller on the front of his tractor.  It was wider than my car.  As I took the on-ramp onto Route 690 headed toward Syracuse, I immediately saw county snow plows traveling 2-3 abreast on the highway with miles of slow-moving cars behind.  The three lane highway was covered in snow, even with the plows (they were going the other way) and you couldn’t discern the lines that differentiated the lanes, so cars were kinda all over the place.  I knew it would be up to me to set the standard!  (LOL!)  Even still, it was a slow drive in to the city.

Once in Syracuse, getting off the blessed highway was a challenge.  I don’t know if Upstate New Yorkers don’t KNOW how to drive in snow, or they just FORGET from year to year.  Everyone seems to be in a panic mode and the normally predictable traffic patterns disappear into the few inches of accumulated snow on the city streets.  No, they have not been plowed ~ obviously, at least not in a long time!  And the sidewalks are also not cleared, sending pedestrians into the streets everywhere.  When I reached within a block of my parking lot, the street was suddenly obviously very UNplowed, as the snow came up over my doors and above the bottom of the underside of my car.  Yep, I was plowing the road for the city.  Not surprising.

Fortunately, our parking lot WAS plowed.  I was sure that it would be pretty well taken care of, as has been the case over the past 4 winters I’ve been parking here.  The one drawback… our landlord seems to have switched plow companys, as this new contractor seems to like to plow the snow from the lot up over the sidewalk and into my and my boss’s parking spaces.  Needless to say, that can be inconvenient.  I think I’ll go have a talk with building Management after I finish this post.

Parking at Jefferson Tower

Parking at Jefferson Tower

All that being said, did I mention that I LOVE snow?  There were so many places that I wish I’d have been able to snap photos of:  the huge pine trees, heavily laden with snow; the fields with acres of untouched white, fluffy snow that you can imagine seeing a skier enjoy; even the Thruway service area that was cluttered with big rigs that had taken the opportunity to get off the road last night and were now waiting to get out and back on their way to their unknown destinations.  This is Upstate (Central) New York!  And, despite the ridiculous taxes, I’m glad I live here!

Drive carefully!

Revealed Chapter 2: The White Picket Fence ~

In my senior year of high school, amidst all the drugs, alcohol and self-pity of losing my first love, a girlfriend of mine told me that her fiancé had a brother who is a Marine who is currently on a 3 month cruise and was lonely and wanted a “pen pal”.  What could it hurt?  It would give me something to do to take my mind off ST, and I loved to write because I had good handwriting skills.  So she gave me his address on this military ship in the middle of the Mediterranean and I wrote my first letter, never really thinking I would get a response, I guess.

 I did get a response, and MS and I continued our pen pal relationship for the three months he was overseas, and for a month or two upon his return to Camp Lejeune, NC, where he was based.  When he finally got leave, he wrote that he would be coming to Syracuse, NY, to see his family (his mom and brothers), so we made arrangements to meet in person.  By this time, I had my first car (a 1970 Maverick) and I had a job working at the Baldwinsville School District Offices as Receptionist after school each day… so I had $$.  Also I had “toned down” my partying from my own school locker, and was only getting completely wasted on the weekends.

This is not my exact first car, but exactly LIKE my first car (including the color).

 When MS and I finally met, it was pretty electric.  Wow!  I was a 17 year old high school senior dating a 21 year old Marine!  And I was finally able to get my mind off ST ~ okay, well, maybe not so much.  But who cares?  I was dating a Marine!  The mutual physical attraction was instantaneous, but then again, I’d had a lot of mutual physical attractions with guys before now… none were Marines.   I guess, by the time MS left Syracuse to go back to Camp Lejeune, we were “boyfriend/girlfriend”, and I promised to continue to keep writing in between infrequent phone calls, and I also had decided to make the trip to North Carolina right after graduation for a week or so of fun in the sun at Camp Lejeune.  I had relatives down there I could visit as well.  It was an exciting time … 1977.

 I’d planned that year to go to college after graduation with a business major and art minor.  I was looking into schools when I found out I was pregnant (yet again), and everything screeched to a halt.  What the he!!?  How did this happen?  And I had to tell that 21 year old Marine that we were going to be parents.  I had no idea how he would react, but was thankful it was positive.  He and I decided to get married and become a family with our little one due the next March 1978.  So it was that he managed to get back to Syracuse 2 days before our wedding day, and we said our vows in Plainville Christian Church with a reception following at my parent’s home where I grew up and would soon be leaving.  I couldn’t be happier!  I was going to have it all… a career husband who would make good money in the service of his country to provide for his wife and child.  And there might be more children, and eventually we’d buy a home somewhere and put up that white picket fence in rural America, get a dog and maybe some cats and live the good life and be in love forever.  I expected nothing less.  And I wanted to be a good mom and wife and do all the “stuff” that was expected of me once domesticated.

My ideal marriage/family dream. After all, the white picket fence holds it all together, doesn’t it?

 And all was well for awhile.  We learned to “play house” in North Carolina.  However, some things were just not meant to last, and my white picket fence was about to come crashing down.