Lovin’ On Virginia

Last summer, I posted a few photos on the Exploring Virginia Facebook page.  Soon, I received a private message from someone by the name of Tina Pecht, asking permission to use two of those photos in a video she was in the process of making. I, of course, said yes, since I consider it an honor whenever anyone finds my photos worthy of sharing.

This week, Tina messaged me to let me know the video is ready, and she gave me permission to share it here on These Days:

(The photos of mine that Tina used in the video are of Bacon’s Castle in the snow  and Smithfield Station Marina at sunrise.)

Tina is originally from Illinois, but moved to Virginia eighteen years ago.  She’s been making videos for quite some time, at first for friends for special occasions and fundraisers.  Her hobby grew into a business venture, Savvy Slideshows, over five years ago.  She says that it combines her love of photography with her “curiousity about people, places and things”.

She was inspired to create this video after hearing John Tracy’s song, “Virginia Is For Lovers” at a wine festival.

Even though Tina isn’t a native Virginian, it’s obvious that she shares our love of The Old Dominion.  Thanks, Tina, for including my photos in this wonderful video showcasing the beauty of the Commonwealth.

~These Days Of Mine~

 

 

A Small Town Weekend

As I mentioned in Friday’s Random Five post, this past weekend was the Olden Days “festival” in our little town. And although the weather forecast was bleak, we actually had a very nice weekend.  The storms didn’t come until late Saturday afternoon, allowing most of the activities to take place under sunny to partly cloudy skies.

As in years past, the kickoff for the weekend was a free concert on the “town square” Friday evening by a local oldies band, The Rhondells. After waiting to decide exactly exactly what the weather was going to do, my friend, Donna, joined us.  A few minutes after she arrived, Liz, a former classmate of ours, who lives about an hour away, texted me to say that she and her husband were also there.  All of a sudden, it was an impromptu mini class reunion.

us3 6-26-2015 8-12-23 PM

Saturday morning, after breakfast with Motor Man, Donna and I took in the Farmers Market, Vintage Alley and classic car show on Main Street. The skies were overcast, but no rain.

main st 6-27-2015 9-38-13 AM

This “rat rod”  has an engine built by my  Motor Man.

rat rod 6-27-2015 9-40-53 AM

Donna met Santa:

donna and santa 6-27-2015 9-42-50 AM

And tried her hand at being a car hop:

donna the carhop 6-27-2015 9-44-13 AM

My adventure began after purchasing this neat old wash tub at the vintage market.

db picnic table1 6-27-2015 10-02-55 AM

Now, you may think that I’m sitting on a picnic table in the above picture. But, actually, that was my transportation (after my wash tub purchase) back to where my car was parked.

It seems that gentleman has built a picnic table on wheels, and was providing a taxi of sorts for folks at Olden Days on Saturday. (I guess now I truly have ridden everything with wheels.)

db picnic table on wheels1 6-27-2015 10-03-38 AM 6-27-2015 10-03-38 AM 6-27-2015 10-03-38 AM

On our way to my car, someone told my driver that he needed to make his way down the street to the location where the kids’ bike parade was beginning.  They wanted him to LEAD the parade.   And he asked me if I’d like to ride. So we dropped off my wash tub at my car, and away we went. (No, I don’t have photos of that, because I’d left my camera with Donna.) And, since I’d taken off with a stranger driving a picnic table on wheels,  she was mighty worried when I took so long to return.

All in all, a fun weekend.  There’s just nothing quite like living in a small town.

~These Days Of Mine~

Random Five Friday

My first “official” Random Five of the summer:

1.) I’m sure most of us have certain dates that stand out for us each year – those dates other than birthdays, anniversaries, etc.  One such date for me is June 26.  That was the date we brought 10-day old Marshall home from the hospital. (Because of some health issues of mine, he was born prematurely, then had some health concerns of his own.)  So even though his birthday is June 16,  this mama also remembers June 26 as a special day. Sigh.

mom and marshall 6-25-2015 8-29-07 PM

2.) Recently, I put out corn for the ducks in a repurposed Cool Whip container.  Something apparently scared them away before they finished eating, and I looked out later to see this: a squirrel smorgasboard for one.

squirrel corn1 6-21-2015 6-40-26 AM

 3.) I don’t recall exactly what year I planted petunias in a container out in the old wooden boat we have in our side yard….last year? Perhaps the year before? Wednesday evening, I was out taking pictures of the sunset and happened to look over at the boat. I just love it when plants surprise me.

2pwrunia32

4.) And here’s the sunset I was capturing – SOOC (straight out of the camera).

sunset last 6-24-2015 8-16-43 PM

5.) This weekend is our town’s “Olden Days” celebration. I wrote about it previously in this post.  Sadly, there’s a good chance of rain for tonight’s and  tomorrow’s activities. Perhaps the weather folks will be mistaken, and we’ll all have a nice surprise.

Do you have weekend plans? Are they threatened by bad weather?

~These Days Of Mine~

Photographing A Feline Diva

Early one morning last week, I went outside to take a picture of one of my little kitty statues in the flowerbed. I’ll share that photo later in the post, but as I turned around to come back inside, another kitty caught my eye.

Silly human, you’re taking pictures of a cat STATUE, when I’m sitting right here… living, breathing feline perfection.

sundae1 6-19-2015 7-59-29 AM

Oh, the humiliation. I just can’t bear it.”

sundae2 6-19-2015 7-59-38 AM

Never mind…what’s that?

sundae3 6-19-2015 7-59-41 AM

Nothing of importance…carry on with the photos. How about a profile shot? This is my best side.

sundae window4 6-19-2015 7-59-54 AM

Yes, Sundae, you’re much more photogenic than the original target of this photo shoot.

kitty statue 6-19-2015 7-59-22 AM

~These Days Of Mine~

Baby William

You most likely recall this photo I posted last week after our most recent trip to see the wild horses of Corolla, North Carolina. It was my favorite picture taken that day.

guillermoa 6-15-2015 12-48-34 PM 6-15-2015 12-48-34 PM

That is Baby William. At birth, each of the Corolla wild horses is given a Latin name: his official name is Guillermo.  Since I published that post last week, little William’s life has changed dramatically.

I’ll provide links if you’d like more info, but here’s the situation in a nutshell: apparently William was born prematurely, and in addition to some health issues, also had a mother who wasn’t very patient with him.  According to the Corolla Wild Horse Fund  (the organization who cares for the horses),  she moved around quite a bit, making it difficult for him to nurse.

Back to the photo I took: William and four adult horses were in one of the canals in the Corolla/Carova area.  None of the other horses were paying any attention to William at all.  I thought that strange, because certainly ONE of them was his mom.  I had no cell phone coverage, but kept my eyes peeled for one of the CWHF tour vehicles, hoping to let them know of the situation.

Not seeing any, we returned to that area a short time later, and found William and the other horses on land. I was relieved.

mom and babe 6-15-2015 1-04-19 PM

The following day, there was a post on the CWHF Facebook page that William had been removed from the herd and taken to the vet.  The heat index in that area had been over 100 every day since he was born.  William had been carefully monitored since birth, and his health was deteriorating.   They feared that removing and trailering his mother would be too traumatic for her.

Does this photo not tug at your heart strings?

William en route to vet photo courtesy of Corolla Wild Horse Fund

William was taken to  North Carolina State University in Raleigh, where he began undergoing tests. It was determined that his bladder was leaking urine into his abdomen, and he was immediately taken to surgery.  Since that time, he has been in ICU, with the original report giving him a 60% chance of survival.

The update yesterday was much better. His catheter had been removed, he was no longer on oxygen, and he was learning to drink from a pan in hopes of removing his feeding tube.  Once he has recovered, he will, most likely, be adopted. After all the human contact, he won’t be returned to the herd.

William in ICU- note his little stuffed horse to the left CWHF photo

William in ICU-
note his little stuffed horse to the left
CWHF photo

The best way to learn more about William and follow his progress is by way of the Corolla Wild Horse Fund Facebook page.

A GoFundMe account has been started to help with Baby William’s medical expenses. I realize we all have our preferred charities, and perhaps a tiny wild horse isn’t on your list. However, if you’re so inclined, please click on the GoFundMe link (above) to donate even a couple of dollars to help with Baby William’s medical care.

Perhaps because we saw him “in person”, Motor Man and I have been especially touched by William’s story.

Keep on getting stronger, Little One. We’re all pulling for you.

~These Days Of Mine~

Through Matthew’s Eyes

My sister, June, is a member of an online knitting forum and often shares my photos with the group. One of her “forum friends” is the mother of a young man named Matthew, who has Asperger’s Syndrome.

It seems Matthew loves to draw, and his mom (through June) asked permission for him to use some of my photos as inspiration for his sketches.  Of course, I didn’t hesitate to say yes. In turn, his mom shares his sketches with June, who emails them to me.

With his Mom’s permission, in today’s post, I’m sharing three of Matthew’s wonderful drawings.

This beautiful sketch of a deer was Matthew’s Christmas card last year.

Matthew'sdeer

Matthew gave this framed sketch for a wedding gift.  I’m sure the newlyweds have it proudly displayed in their home.

matthew'sbird

And last, but certainly not least,  this sketch of our sweet Gypsy girl.

matthewscat

To help those, including myself, who aren’t familiar with this condition, Matthew’s mom asked that I also share some information about autism/Asperger’s Syndrome. This was copied directly from her email to June: “Matthew has had to have his eye muscles detached and reattached to his eyes twice, due to controllable rapid eye movements.  The muscles will always be weak, so sometimes he sees things differently than we do.  The drawing helps to calm him from the body shakes that happen with autism and helps to train his eyes to focus.  What a blessing to have this skill in his life to help him in so many ways”.  She also expressed her appreciation that I gave permission for him to draw from my photos.

I am deeply honored that Matthew has chosen my photographs as inspiration for some of his drawings, and wish him only the best with his artwork, and more importantly, his health.

My photos may be an inspiration for his sketches, but, in my eyes, Matthew is an inspiration to us all.

~These Days Of Mine~

Random Five Friday

Ending a hot, humid week here in southeast Virginia with five randoms:

1.) I glanced out our bedroom window one morning earlier this week and saw this bee on a lacecap hydrangea bloom.  Morning’s golden hour, once again, provided the perfect lighting.

bee on hydrangea 6-12-2015 8-17-09 AM

2.) Mistake?  Or marketing ploy? (Hoping customers will come in to tell you the word is spelling incorrectly, and in turn, make a purchase..??)

sirlion 6-14-2015 11-18-37 AM

3.) Humid, yes, indeed – even at sunrise.

sunrise 6-14 6-14-2015 6-36-03 AM

4.) Still no Bride Swan, so “New Swan” is filling in at being beautiful.

new swan

5.) And, finally, a couple of photos from Marshall’s birthday celebration (apologies to my FB friends for the rerun).

us 3 6-16-2015 9-46-30 AM

Motor Man and Marshall teamed up at the restaurant gift shop, and managed to buy and sneak this oar out to the vehicle without me knowing it.

db marsh oar1  6-16-2015 10-53-036 6-16-2015 10-53-35 AM

Any surprises in your life this week?

~These Days Of Mine~