Monday, October 31, 2011

Not Sure Which is Scarier ...

That I took 4 takes of this video and may have peed my pants a little:

or that we're the type of people who attempt to dress up our cat and think it's cute enough for the internet:

If we had our act together to dress up as a family, we would have either been a Three Ring Circus Leader, Trapeze Artist and Tiger or a Lion, Tiger and Bear (oh, my!).  I heart family costumes - future hypothetical children beware!

Happy Halloween to you, Jagger, Tigger and yours!

Friday, October 28, 2011

Friday Finds - Wine Harvest

The wine went to my head on our recent visit to Sonoma/Napa and I haven't been able to get it off my mind since.  The variety of flavors and vineyards were accentuated by the near perfect weather and only some photo editing is standing between us sharing the experience with you.  In the mean time, the collection this week is taking me back to sunshine filled vineyards and lazy afternoons sipping wine.

Clockwise from Top L:
S.S.C. Photography and Prints - Golden Grapes
Dave Huddleston - Wine Country Back Roads
Bacon Square Farm - Wood Serving Tray

PS - If you're missing Ollie's usual spot on Thursday, he'll be vlogging this weekend :)

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Hot Air Ballooning

I often wonder how my fear of heights would manifest itself on a hot air balloon ride.
The romantic image of gliding across the sky, rising towards the clouds and catching my breath over the panoramic views is inspiring.
However, it would be a waste of about $200 if I was curled up in a ball on the basket floor repeatedly asking to be let down.
So for now, I wonder from the ground.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Bumper Crop

Breaking from our routine of me waiting at home for Mr. Palindrome to emerge from his work shuttle, I drove to him the other Friday.  He was wrapping up, so I lounged near his cube and this huge basket caught my eye.
I started popping the cherry morsels like candy when Mr. Palindrome declared that since he was the last in the office, we could take the whole basket home.  Homegrown, organic tomatoes of all varieties - heirloom, roma, cherry, plum.  Come to momma sweet basket of acidic goodness.
So we took them home where I photographed them and then promptly turned them into 5 jars of marinara using patio basil and local garlic.  Spaghetti never tasted so good.
Oh, and that cantaloupe? He wasn't so bad either. ;)  Just about makes me want to move to south bay where they have things people call "yards" in which they plant delicious gardens consisting of things other than a lone basil plant.

'Tis Indian Summer indeed.

Thursday, October 20, 2011


This is what he thinks of his halter and leash.  

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

'Ray Bucknell

Last month I took on a writing assignment that was a mash-up of two of my favorite things: Bucknell and blogging.  Today it was published and I can finally share it with you all!

If you're stopping by for the first time, welcome! I hope you browse around a little and come back for more.  Bucknell often pops up in my blogging and I routinely sprinkle our lives with blue and orange (decorating inspiration anyone?).  The mem'ries oft come trooping by in these parts, but we're making lots of new ones too as we adjust to life on the West Coast.  My RSS feed and Twitter link are along the right side of the blog - I hope to see you around the blogosphere!

Monday, October 17, 2011

October Photo Challenge Week 3

I hit two of my three goals from last week (one shot fully manual and using my tripod).  This week my only goal is to hit that third of using both my lenses on one subject.  Otherwise, it was a great week and I think some of my favorite photos by far.

Day 12: Sunset  My intention was to make it home to my apartment building in time to take a few sunset pictures over the city from our top floor.  I made it to the street corner before concluding that I'd miss the sunset if I went into the building, got my camera and set up on the top floor.  I made the best out of a desperate situation and went for composition.  I'm happy with the Muni lines slicing across the sky and didn't realize until I saw the picture in full size that I caught the couple hugging in the foreground.  Better than I thought, but not as great as if I had planned ahead more thoroughly.

Day 13: Me with 13 Things  Rounding up 13 things was a huge challenge to me.  I was having brain freeze on what to choose, the theme, etc.  When I saw my vase of grocery store carnations looking sad, I started to gather them up to throw them out and make room for a new bouquet.  Lo and behold, 13 stems still had some life in them.  It was meant to be.  I love fresh flowers in the house and slip bouquets into my grocery cart at least once a week. (Tripod usage!)

Day 14: Eyes  Like Jenna, I have blue eyes and covet them for my (very future and hypothetical) children. Biologically, there's a chance, but I may be the last of the blue eyes in my line.

Day 15: Silhouette  Armed with Jenna's great tutorial, I expected that I would try to utilize the sunrise since I catch it most mornings.  This morning, in between snoozes, I saw Oliver up on the window ledge.  I grabbed my camera and in all of my haste and blindness, I snapped this right before he leaped off the sill.  Gah, it's a bit blurry because I was fumbling with settings and trying to focus on the background, but I just love the tail and the city light bokeh so much that I went with it anyways.

Day 16: Long Exposure  This was an outtake from the silhouette day but so interesting that I wanted to include it.  I love the warm colors, the cursive-like b's drawn with the bokeh, and the hint of the cat.  A happy accident.

Day 17: Technology  Both of our careers have a technological focus as well as many of our hobbies!  I used to be a bit embarrassed that we had so many computers (umm, there are still 2 that aren't pictured and frankly, I'm still a little embarrassed), but we use the majority of them on a regular basis and have active plans to sell two of them for parts.  I love that Mr. P is in the background of this picture working on yet another computer.  If you count our smart phones too, you can bump our number up by 3 more.  Oh, and did I mention that since we gave away 500(!) books before our move that I promised myself the Kindle?  :)

Over halfway done in the challenge!  I've been loving everyone's contributions to the flickr site and can't wait to see this week's pictures!

Friday, October 14, 2011

Friday Finds - Muted Pumpkin

One thing I will never understand about Mr. Palindrome is his aversion to pumpkin.  I could eat it all day long.  Pumpkin pie, scones, lattes, etc.  I rarely make it just for myself though, so I have to make do in other ways.  This week's collection is a tribute to my love for that delicious fruit.

Clockwise from top L:
Coldwater Creek: Pea Coat in Orange

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Oliver Loves the Computer

Is it the warmth? An electromagnetic field? Or just a devilish desire to interrupt and close all open windows?  Any which way you cut it, having a curious kitty with a ravenous appetite for walking, sitting and kneading computers is simultaneously frustrating and endearing.  

This little executive has a penchant for sending documents to the printer. He figures out shortcuts I didn't realize were even an option (like changing your monitor to portrait for instance).   
We say, "SKAT!" and he says, "That starts with an S right? I'll have that typed up right away!"
We say, "For the love of everything good and just in the world, please!" and he says, "I'll check that connection for you!"
And just when you think he's finally taken the hint, you realized he's moved on to your scone.
Salmon and cinnamon chip - it's the hippest combo in kittyville.

Are your pets helpful executives?

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

October Photo Challenge Week 2

Week 1 of the Photo Challenge is done!  As we head into week 2, I decided to give myself some concrete goals for my shots this week.

- Use my tripod at least once
- Take photos of the same subject with both of my lenses
- Take one shot fully manually

This week, Days 5-7 were taken with my point and shoot for convenience's sake.  I want to push my ability with a point and shoot as well since it's so handy for travelling and really is quite capable of good quality pictures.

Day 4: Something Green
October 4

Day 5: From a Low Angle
October 5

Day 6: From a High Angle
October 6

Day 7: Fruit  The most challenging shot this week was fruit.  We had no fresh fruit in the house and my daylight hours were waning by the time I would get home from work.  The logistics weren't working out when I was figuring out if I could stop by the grocery store on the way home and still style/photograph.  I took a bite of doughnut and thought some more.  I took another bite and wondered some more.  Then it hit me.  Coconut is a fruit, no?  It's still one of my lazier attempts though.
October 7

Day 8: A Bad Habit  When I was a kid I chewed my nails off as fast as they could grow in.  In an effort to help break the habit, my mom promised I could get my ears pierced at 10 instead of 13.  Now, I have my ears pierced and chew my cuticles.

Day 9: Someone You Love  Mr. P wasn't around.  My family is on the east coast.  Not that this rascal is my last choice, but he was certainly the most available model.

Day 10: Childhood Memory   Hello Teddy, old friend.  Old faithful.  From age 2 until 26 he was my only bedfellow.  When I moved to NC, Mr. P and I struck a deal.  Teddy would retire when we finished our master bedroom renovation.  He celebrated that night, and I shed a little tear for Teddy.

October 11: Something Blue  When I was Sam's momma, I ordered this sweet watercolor from an artist on Etsy.  Sweet blue eyes.  Miss this gal.

Sunrise from the balcony

Working East coast hours is really a workout on the ol' blinkers.  I try to swallow a few gulps of coffee to exterminate the frog in my throat.  Then I wrap myself in the ratty afghan we have on our couch.  While I hear the AT&T hold music, my rooster equivalent, I watch the sun rise over the bay.  

This is what fortunate looks like.  Fortunate for the balcony.  Fortunate for the sun. Fortunate for beauty Fortunate for another day.


Friday, October 7, 2011

Friday Finds - Mint Chocolate

As soon as I laid eyes on these bad boys, my mouth started watering and the Friday Finds idea for this collection was born.
 Image from Annie's Eats

Even though the sagey mint color always strikes me as more of a spring color, paired with the chocolate, I'm digging the autumn connection.  And unlike Annie, I have no aversion to the two together!

Clockwise from the Top L:
Boomerville - Trinket Dish
Sarasota Life - Vintage Wallpaper
White Clover Kiln - Ceramic Button
Irene Suchocki - Woodland Photograph

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Oliver Loves to Nap

Is it Thursday already??? Since I don't really remember September happening, I'm not sure why I thought I would remember October.  We're almost one week in and I'm behind.  I tried setting an editorial schedule for blog publishing, but as it turns out, I'm not a good enforcer.  Somehow Thursdays have morphed into Kitty days and they've been some of the more popular posts, so I'm not going to fight that one.  I'm rolling with what's working.  It's like I woke up one day and I was a Californian.  Just roll with it.  It's cool man.

Anykitty, my little fartfunoogan is a champion napper.  Overall he's a good sleeper and most nights can be found curled up near our knee pits (under the covers!).  The naps are generally long and if one of us is working from home, it's guaranteed that they happen in our laps.  I'm beside myself with happiness because our former cat was not such a people person.  I mean I love all my animals the same, but this one has wormed his way into my a heart through snuggles.  I'm a sucker for the snuggles.
Hi sleepy head.  Does that pillow need any fluffing?
No?  Oh, you're sleeping already.
Kitty yawns are actually extremely contagious.  I'm getting the yawns just looking at the pictures.
It's hard work cutting your bit cat teeth (see those cute little nubbins in there?).  Snoozie McSnoozerson is back at it.
I think I know where he gets it from.
Good gracious, these boys slay me with cuteness. 

Do you let your fur balls share the bed with you?  Did you yawn when you saw the pictures? 

Monday, October 3, 2011

October Photo Challenge

I'm joining Our Wired Lives and the crew for an October Photo Challenge.  I wanted some focused practice on my photography skills and figured it's a great way to do it.  I'm really excited about all the folks joining in - follow along at the group's flickr page or on Twitter (#OctPhotoChallenge).  I'll be posting my photos weekly on Mondays, but hoping to update flickr and Twitter more.

Day 1: Self Portrait  I'd love to get better at reflections in windows.  I still didn't hit the right lighting, but this was the best of the bunch.  Any tips?

Day 2: What You Wore  So I thought Day 2 was Clouds . . . this pile is really what I wore yesterday.  Hanes Her Way ankle socks, an Oxford t-shirt from my study abroad days and a pair of Levis.  The Outfit of Champions.

Day 3: Clouds  The clouds have been Ah-mazing here in CO this week.  They roll across the mountains in all shapes and forms.  I used a UV filter (on purpose - often I forget about it indoors and end up with dark pics - doh!) and I think it helped define the rays of sunshine.  Any other tricks for photographing the sky?  I think the bottom half of this photo could use some sort of help.
3 out of 30, we're already 1/10th of the way done!