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Friday, September 30, 2011

Friday Funnies

Never knew He was in this business.

gods wayBut then times are tough all over.

Thursday, September 29, 2011

What is This #14 Answer

It’s a carwash, Tammy was right!

These photos might seem a bit more obvious.

car wash collageGrenville went for the deluxe wash; I went along for the ride, and the photos – always the photos!.

IMG_0103Thanks, Tammy, I liked your thought about it being a glazed pot.

Folks, check out Tammy’s blog, Simple Southern Happiness. There’s great photos she been posting taken with her new Canon digital SLR.

Gas Nearly Any Which Way

Here’s a view on getting gas of two types — fuel and indigestion.

927 gas price2It’s been awhile since I posted a gas price photo update, but prices have steadily been coming down on the fuel you put in your car. We’ve been watching a steady downward progression after $3.79 being the steady price for what seemed like months. This photo shows the average going rate here on the VA eastern shore as of earlier this week.

How are prices doing by you?

The other type of gas is also from fuel – but can be from food at places like the one below. I’m not saying this is certain – just  basing on past personal experiences. Grenville and I used to regularly go to a local fast food chain (Hardee’s) for their bacon cheddar burgers. But the after-effects were not always desirable, so we stopped cold turkey over 2 years ago and have not been to a similar chair (Burger Kind, McDonald’s) in going on 3 years.

926 McD update (1)In late June, the one (and only) McDonald’s, in this area was completely demolished. Construction has been moving along quickly, and as of this week, 3 months later, its replacement is nearly complete. Landscaping was being done the day this photo was taken across the roadway.

There’s sure to be a grand opening, which may take place while we’re away on our upcoming road trip – SHUCKS we’ll just have to miss that date (thankfully).

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

What is This? #14

Here it is – another What is This? 

It’s been awhile since the last one at the end of August.

So, can you figure out what this is OR where these images were taken?All images were taken within 5 minutes in the same place. Nope, it’s not a type of algae or fungi and has no connection with either one.

colors collageAs always, NO prizes, just braggin’ rights cause it’s just for fun!
Answer in tomorrow's post.  C’mon and try – you may be RIGHT !

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Once Upon a Wildflower Garden

This spring Grenville decided to plant a wildflower meadow for the hummingbirds and butterflies.

Veggies were grown here a couple of seasons ago, but we downsized the garden. And with the help of his friend, John Deere, Grenville cleared the area, sowed LOTS of wildflower seeds, and covered it with chips from the tree cut down in the front yard last fall

meadow0513 (2)And then the waiting started.

Unlike this past week, when it hasn’t stopped raining, there as a scarcity of rainfall this spring. Growing in the meadow started s-l-o-w-l-y.

wildflower meadow619By mid-July, blooms were everywhere.

meadow0716 (7)meadow0716 (2)Like in other parts of the country, summer was hot, humid and very dry on the VA eastern shore. There were lots of 90-degree days with heat indices near or over 100 degrees, but scarce rainfall.

Watering was reserved for the vegetable gardens. The wildflowers were left on their own, but survived – too well – they grew and kept growing.

These photos were taken late today. The coreopsis are well over 8 feet high and still blooming. No butterflies have been seen in recent days.

927 wildflower jungle (1)Soon we’ll cut it down and mulch everything back in, including most of the seed pods, which means there may be an even BIGGER meadow next season.

wildflowers collage927Even though they are past their prime blooms, the wildflowers are still beautiful. Some hang on to their color till the last petal has dropped.

wildflowers2 collage927

Summer gathers up her robes of glory,
And, like a dream, glides away.
Sarah Helen Whitman

Monday, September 26, 2011

Shrooms – Nature’s Recyclers

Did I mention that we’ve had a lot of rain since last week?  It’s been nearly 5 days of on and off showers, including some downpours.
926 shrooms (3)Lawns around town are sprouting rows of white caps.
926 shroomsMushrooms are fungi that live on dead organic matter and grow and feed on decaying dead roots, old mulch, animal waste or rotting stumps that were covered by soil.
926 shrooms (2)They are the fruit of this fungus. An abundance of food sources for the fungi in the soil will ensure lots of lawn mushrooms. The more food sources the fungi have, the bigger the lawn mushrooms will grow.
shroom collage1That’s why some lawn mushrooms are huge and others are small – it depends on the amount of food sources  available.
shroom collage2Most mushrooms generally are harmless to grasses; some  consider them unsightly or want remove them as children might try eating them. Some variations are poisonous.
926 shrooms (14)The mushrooms that are visible are only the fruiting body, which primarily spreads spores to create new colonies. It’s what's going on underground, that keeps the fungus alive. Most mushrooms reproduce asexually by releasing thousands of spores through their gills into the open air for dispersion into the environment.
926 shrooms (12)Mushrooms are natural recyclers – most are harmful to a lawn. They decompose organic matter and release nutrients for plant growth into the soil.

So if you have a lawn full of mushrooms – be thankful. It’s not a bad thing.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Stormy Weather (Not the Song)

Storm clouds have been gathering lately . . .

sunlight thru cloudsNC 911 (6)sunlight thru cloudsNC 911 (4)Hopefully, it will be clearing soon . . .

sunlight thru cloudsNC 911 (8)And, better (perhaps) sunny days are coming . . .

sunlight thru cloudsNC 911 (1)

sunlight thru cloudsNC 911 (7)

Maybe even this week?

Hope that your weather is doing better than ours.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Days That Make You SCREAM

That’s the day I had today.

It’s been raining for several days here on the VA eastern shore, which means that when it finally stops sometime late Sunday – the weeds will have overrun the lawn. But that’s not WHY it’s been a lousy day.

Grenville is away at a Master Naturalist seminar for the weekend and while he is missed very much by me, that’s NOT what made this a Scream-Out-Loud day.

It’s because of eBay – specifically an auction winner who hasn’t paid for an item – or made any attempt to do so. IF it was a small item, then a few days delay (maybe) wouldn’t be such a problem. BUT, this item is a 19-Ft Deck Boat posted online before we left for our NC road trip. Details found in this earlier post.

WOW – we had lots of activity – more than I’ve ever had for a listing withleft side deck boat (3) nearly 600 views and then over 15 “watchers.” To get some anyone in a buying mood,  Grenville lowered the starting bid. then EUREKA a bid was placed and that’s all we needed to be happy, even though a bidding “war” would have been nice. But 1 bid is really all that was needed.

Did I mention we REALLY want to sell this boat?

Grenville has been trying to sell the deck boat locally this summer. Ever since his back started acting up, he realized that it’s too much for him to handle. And, there were lots several guys who came to see it and “kick the tires” as Grenville patiently (and often) explained its features, why he’s selling, servicing done last summer. Several guys said “I have to check with the wife and will get back to you.” Translate to “not interested, but afraid to say that” cause you know that IF a guy really wants to buy a boat – or anything else – he’s just gonna do it – no asking the missus “if it’s OK.”

Just ask Grenville how he bought the boat.

rearD914 (1)We delayed leaving on our recent NC trip because a guy called the night before and wanted to come and see it before we left. Grenville gave him a 20-minute tour, etc. and told me the guy was interested, but was going to have breakfast and – can you guess – “talk to his wife” BUT he assured Grenville that he would call “one way or the other.”  But, he didn’t leave a number (handily) and Grenville forgot to ask for it.

But I digress, when we got the news that the boat had SOLD on eBay we were really happy, me especially cause Grenville was doubtful after the previous encounters. Me too, cause I’ve sold stuff, bought as well, but it was always something I could package in a box, like cameras or books.  Sort of hand to do that with a boat – and heavier too.

So, the deal ends and per listing terms, a $500 deposit is required within 48 hours with local pick-up at our VA home.

Sounds straightforward – right? Buyer gets an invoice requesting deposit payment. After all, we had already answered several questions before the auction end from this buyer so figured he was “good to go” the distance in completing the deal.

A separate email informed said buyer that we were leaving Oct 3 for an extended trip (more on this later). He send an email: “I am having a terrible time getting a shipper that can pick it up before the 3rd. “

Then starts a series of emails requesting payment which bring this buyer email on 9/22, 36 hrs after auction ended: “I think I have a guy that cam get it in time.”

What doesn’t come?  -- $$ for the deposit.

eBay lets you do a look-up on a buyer to get location and phone number once a sale has been made, so I decide to do that.

Wonder WHY he’s having a “tough” time?
He’s in Alberta, Canada

Now I am really steamed cause the auction stated U.S. only and I manage to get a phone call to eBay to ask HOW was this person able to bid? I was told that sometimes buyers use a different (as in U.S.) shipping address. So why does this happen if eBay knows about it to tell me?

Another email to the buyer is sent, asking his location, which I already know from info that eBay provided. AGAIN  the deposit is asked for as a sign of good faith, which he obviously has NONE of in my opinion. Purpose was to keep the lines open to work this out.  What I really wanted to do was scream in a flaming email cause . . .

Did I mention we REALLY want to sell this boat?

Then, since we wanted to know – another email is sent asking IF he intends to complete this transaction. The reply: “I do and I think I have a guy lined up. I will get you the deposit today.“

Famous LAST words in that email which came Friday, 9/23, around noon. Checked before midnight and still NO deposit.

Yet another email sent this morning (Sat, 9/24) asking “what was happening”  actually wanted to say things a lot stronger, but  . . .

Did I mention we REALLY want to sell this boat?

No reply emails today, so a last email sent late today asked for a status update – on anything – deposit, pick-up, decision.

Did I mention we REALLY want to sell this boat?

Finally, an hour ago, I filed a non-paying bid with the eBay resolution Center cause we have already been charged for the listing and final sale fees, despite getting NO $$$. Supposedly, eBay contacts the buyer to try and resolve the issue and maybe get some action? Well, one can hope.

What we really want to do is cancel and start over and maybe get someone who WOULD send the deposit and PICK-UP the boat. But there’s only a week before we leave. Maybe we will list it while on the road and go for a really long listing time.

Did I mention we’re going on another road trip?

Anyway, it’s late tonight  and time for bed. Thanks for taking the time to read this rant. I feel better, already. Of course, not as good as if the boat deal had gone through.

Anyone want to buy a 19-ft Deck Boat?

Maybe fellow blogger Anvil Cloud, who also lives in Canada could help our recalcitrant buyer come and do the pick-up?

Maybe NOT.

Some Better GREAT news . . .

Grenville comes home late Sunday afternoon, and

The new stove arrived this week and cooks wonderfully.

More on those two items and the upcoming road trip – NOT back to NC, but may involve seeing some trains as well.

penguin t-shirt (1)

Friday, September 23, 2011

Orange You Glad It’s Here?

Fall arrived today – not quite here yet. So, these images are from previous years till fall colors get to the VA eastern shore.

fall scene2 NassawadoxAutumn, the year’s last loveliest smile.

William Cullen Bryant

fall collageSummer makes me drowsy, Autumn makes me sing, Winter’s pretty lousy, but I hate Spring.

Dorothy Parkerfall collage2

I cannot endure to waste anything as precious as autumn sunshine by staying in the house.  So I spend almost all the daylight hours in the open air.

Nathanial Hawthorne

DSCN7646Autumn burned brightly, a running flame through the mountains, a torch flung to the trees.

Faith Baldwin

fall collage3Everyone must take time to sit and watch the leaves turn.

Elizabeth Lawrence

DSCN2679How beautifully leaves grow old.  How full of light and color are their last days. 

John Burroughs

Touchdown (but not Football)

We don’t want to say that nothing really exciting happens in our little town of 500 folks.

But, it usually doesn’t – really.

So, this Tuesday after returning from our recent road trip  and heading to the post office and grocery store,  here’s what we saw – a crane lifting a steeple . . .

P1050190

Of course, we had to stop and watch this operation. Some of you may know we don’t have any cable/dish service – no TV watching, so anytime, there’s a live show, it’s for us!

Here’s the story – the Onley Baptist Church on W. Main St. was taking down what was left of its steeple. The topmost part of the steeple was removed a couple of weeks ago, but we missed that event cause we were  on a road trip.

The smoke you see in this photo was from the gas-poweredP1050199 chain saw, which was having a tough time cutting through the wood and the siding. Grenville thought it would have made more sense to take off the siding first, but then you have to live here to know why he would think that. And, yes that was a little large bit of sarcasm on our part. The guys working up there had to stop every few minutes to let the saw cool down – does that tell you anything?

According to the church pastor (he’s standing on the crane truck in the large photo above) the steeple was deteriorating due to age and water damage. It’s being replaced with a fiberglass one which won’t need replacement. But then this original one did last since the 1920s (estimate from the pastor). But, as most of us know, things aren’t built like they used to be (lots more sarcasm).

P1050201P1050202

Once the corners were cut free, the takedown began.

P1050206P1050204

Soon the steeple was travelling up and over the church before touching down on the front lawn.

P1050213P1050219P1050222

Next down was the church bell, which was also being removed as part of the renovations. It will be put back in the new steeple.

P1050225P1050226

The men who completed this operation were church members.  As you can see, they were not camera-shy.

P1050229

While it was heavily overcast and the light was going quickly, it didn’t rain throughout this nearly hour-long process.

P1050232P1050238

Touchdown - for both.

The bell was loaded on a flatbed truck and removed for renovation before it’s put in the new steeple. We asked the pastor when the new steeple is expected – it would be more free entertainment, but he didn’t have a firm date. We’re leaving on another road trip Oct 3 (details soon) and will probably miss this event.

P1050245

These photos were taken with a Panasonic 6X zoom digital camera that’s kept in a backpack in my car. As fellow blogger Sandra (MadSnapper) so often advises, it’s always good to carry a camera along, even if it’s just a small one.

You never know what you might see right in your own backyard or town – and wished you had a camera handy.

Friday Funnies

We counted  7 music boxes in this small pickup – MP3s would have been easier to transport . . .

tunes collageWouldn’t you think?wood truck collage

Both trucks were seen within a few minutes on the road trip home from NC this week.

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