Monday, September 25, 2017

The stones

When I was a little, bitty thing

I would search out the stones

the ones that could be crushed easily

with a bigger stone

One that didn't crumble

Different colors of sand

Piled next to one another


I don't come across those stones anymore

I wonder if some children still do

Photo by Tavia Neal

Friday, September 22, 2017

Stockyards of Fort Worth, TX

We had a friend of Austin's visiting from California (who had never been to Texas) over the summer, so I had the brilliant idea of taking them to visit the Stockyards. The stockyards are located in Fort Worth, about a 45 minute drive from the Dallas/ Plano area. These boys didn't seem to be impressed, not even as a 600 pound longhorn, walked right by them, close enough that they could reach out and touch it. Maybe it was because the heat index was 112 (like hell on earth!) or maybe it was because the computer animated beings that they deal with are much scarier and larger? Anyhow, I thought it was cool. Also, I wish there weren't cars and other distractions, they take away from the authenticity of a cattle run, the longhorns just kind of lazily walk down the street. I wish they had been thundering past us, whipping up dust, with a crazed look in their eyes, but that wasn't how it went down.

Water tower at the Stockyards

Here come the Longhorns & Cowboys

Like they are coming right at you, slowly, very slowly

They seemed very bored, but like I said, HOT

And then they were gone

Those horns!

This guy belonged to a nearby cowboy

At least Travis looks excited

Bowie, Is it over yet?

Cool tracks

Had to make them stand still for this

Bowie is still my happy poser

Many sister cities

Thursday, August 31, 2017

The photograph

Sitting in her apple red pants

A tight brim above her wisps

Her lashes gray and straight

She smiled, still

Her hands clasped tightly to her

one small possession

Monday, August 7, 2017

I love you Free People...BUT

My sister and I love the Free People brand. I've been a fan since the early nineties, I think they started maybe mid-eighties or something. So.. over the years, I've liked, bought, disliked, had to have..etc... whatever, but the last five years I've noticed some REALLY silly stuff (clothing) on their website mostly. Not to mention the COST$$$ of these laughable items (no offense to the designers). So.. with that in mind here are some of my favorite things to question. These are from the last six months, in no particular order.

Hmm..where would I wear this, maybe when I am playing Scrooge, in A Christmas Carol?

I could wear this when I want to be completely naked, yet appear to be wearing clothes. With ruffles. Steal @$99, down from $295.

I could put this on for only $500, when I want to sneak my children (3) in to some place, without anyone noticing.

This was $400, but for the lower price of $200, I can feel as though I'm wearing a circus tent! VERY festive!

For $455 I can wrap this blanket/dress around me, and crawl into bed warm. Looks the same in the front!

Someone may be able to pull this off, but who? Only $200 made of polyester, so even though it's see through, you will be sweating!

This looks like my grandmother's night jacket, even sheer, and only $420 wear with tennis shoes. Nice Photo, sells the dress for sure...

I think this could be used as a shower curtain, a steal for only $300, down from $475  front is the same, watch your step.

I don't even know where to begin with this dress, on sale for $500, down from $700, is this made of unicorn hair?

Are these a preppy version of MC Hammer's favorite pants in jumpsuit denim form??? Are those clouds or flowers?

I can't imagine trying to visit the bathroom in this, are those sideways ruffles on the legs, or, I don't know. Only $500 worth of confusion.

The name says it all, going fast @$70

When you need an extra sail, just in case you're on a boat, and the sail fails.

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

The Breakers

These photos are from a recent trip to Newport, Rhode Island. The Breakers was a summer home to the prestigious Vanderbilt family, now it is a National Historic Landmark, and is open to the public year-round. The fee of $25 is well worth the price, the historic artisan beauty and intricate detailed design of these mansions of the gilded age makes the trip quite memorable. So many of these historic beauties are extremely expensive to keep from falling into disrepair and it would be a shame to watch any of these palaces of the past, slip into dust. The lighting isn't great for photos, and you can't use a flash due to how light is a destroyer of antiquities, so these are the best photos I could get. Still you can see how delicate and detailed everything is, aside from the simple and sort of stark bedroom suites. Hope you enjoy!
The front gates

The walkway to the front of the house

After a set of steps up, this is the grand entrance,
 note the red carpet on the stairs

A pretty marble fireplace, one of many throughout

The marble walls and light fixtures, wow..marble walls!?

More marble pillars, and ornate things, everywhere you look, 
the detail is fantastic!

Another marble fireplace, this one with carved cherubs

Doorway, hand painted and gilded wood carvings, 
the ceiling into the next room,
I wish I could have looked closer

The dark and brooding feeling library

I can't remember what room this was, I was getting overwhelmed by wealth,
it may have been the ceiling of the dining room, or the library 

Door handle, just wanted to show the detail

Amazing Stained glass ceiling

A beautiful ceiling, the ceilings were the best, how did all ceilings 
become white these days, let's go back

Another ceiling, hand painted wallpaper-

This is the hallway upstairs, looking down to the entryway, marble pillars 

I thought this was a strange chair. I couldn't tell if the table slid back and forth,
but I'm assuming it did, maybe for playing cards? Footsies? 

This is a wide shot of Mr. Vanderbilt's Bedroom
His Bathroom

His footbath?

This was the daughter's bedroom, very floral, 
but like the other room, not quite as ornate

A tapestry and more carved painted wood, so amazing, the craftsmanship

Stairwell to the kitchen

The kitchen was for servants, and you can see it is 
very practical, less ornate

But it's my dream kitchen, so cool

The concrete prep table is so modern,
copper pots, nice and shiny.

Sunny little spot, maybe for making bread

I love the depth of this sink, copper and huge!

Keep those sharp instruments behind the glass!?

Butler's two story pantry

Tea cabinet or something, I couldn't wear the headset,
so I used my imagination...

Another lovely ceiling, I think my favorite, this was the dining room

In the main entryway

Ceiling above entryway

Sitting room

I think this was going up the stairs, so pretty!

Ceiling... beauty!

Another fireplace and sitting room

Everyone needs an ancestor with an eyepatch!

The clouds, I can see the sky!

Over a doorway, an angry cherub

Another sitting room

A better view of the marble walls

Another cool ceiling, hmmm...I need to start painting again

Fireplace detail

Lone phone, near the kitchen

More detail of the dining room


Another mural on the ceiling

 Hope you enjoyed the photos, next photo set like this will be from Hearst Castle!