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When you've posted online as much as I have, the ability to dream up titles is pretty important. Not long after Bruce gave me my first digital camera, Matthew gave me the gift of flickr for my birthday. Oh my, how I was in love with seeing all the gorgeous photos from the world over. As time went by, I learned to make up titles for my photos, some 1,500 or so, as well as this blog, of which you are reading post #996. Whew, that's a bunch of titles! Which all means I have loads of practice naming images, a great help when titling the photographs I sell. I won't lie, I kind of like it when folks compliment me on my titles

All of that to say that this article on the slow death of Flickr is sad. Very sad. I can remember my excitement when posting, seeing my children's adventures and travels on flickr, and meeting folks from around the world online. In fact, most of the contacts I have aside from family and friends are all from flickr, including Lenny whose set of gorgeous birds from England is nothing short of remarkable. See, you just can't get that from facebook ,which is why I hope, hope, hope, something can be done to stop the bleeding. I'd be there in a heartbeat if only it worked a little faster. The internet world is like a gold rush--here today, gone tomorrow.

Since last we met, we got a new awning to replace the one we made. Actually, they took the old one down about four weeks ago and truthfully, I was getting a wee bit anxious for the replacement. Wouldn't you know it, when they brought it Friday morning before our departure, the awning had white trim attached to the bottom, which was not what I ordered. White looks good, we did it ourselves, but that is precisely one of the reasons for replacing ours. Mildew shows up horribly on white. Apparently they came back later on Friday so that when we returned home Sunday night, there it was.
Actually, it is not quite what I had hoped for fabric-wise, but I chose from their selection of Sunbrella, a highly weather resistant fabric. I'll get used to it. Maybe by the time it needs replacing in the future, there will be just the perfect fabric!

Sadly another neighbor has died. There was a message to call Regina on the answering machine when we got home Sunday night. Calling her back, she told me the newsm which was not entirely shocking to me. Yes, I was shocked that what appeared to be a healthy man was dead, but Friday morning while moving the cars around I saw some emergency vehicles just down the street with none of the workers appearing to be in a hurry. I assumed it was the mother, or father, of our remodeling contractor who was having some sort of trouble because of their age. Not so. Jerry was 69 which seems pretty young to me. Plus, I saw him nearly every day driving his Element down the street. To make it more personal, it was his nectarine tree I've photographed and posted on this very blog. For some reason the photos are not showing up on that post so I'll post the tree again for reference.
Furthermore, his daughter married the son of the gynecologist who delivered my first born son. So there's that.

Baxter has been slightly puny since our return so you can imagine how I remedied that situation. Of course, a trip to Cypress Grove Park. Today I took my Olympus Pen with the 55-200 Panasonic lens which I've not used very much. Ouch!! I looked it up on Amazon and it now costs $150 less than I paid. Anyway, practice was in order. Puniness aside, Baxter had a little hey-day there, running as if he felt just fine and dandy. Not long after starting our walk, I saw a white limo come down the main drive. This was 9:30 in the morning I might add. And really, what a limo it was. The front tag says "Above and Beyond" which seems appropriate to me.
Why yes, it is a Rolls Royce. As we walked the pathways, here is what we saw soon thereafter:
What you don't see is the videographer, violinist, and photographer surrounding the wedding couple. There appeared to be not one guest in sight. Perhaps they are a British couple having a destination wedding? I wish them a long and happy life together, whomever they are!

The roses are blooming like mad--some real stunners, although this one looks small compared to some I've seen in California. I mean, there, the roses are not only gorgeous, but huge as well. This one will have to do for now:
Speaking of California, my poor Bruce sent me a photo last evening via email and if I knew how to get it to this blog I would. Actually it's kind of gross looking. Have I piqued your interest yet? No worries, here's what it is all about. Saturday evening, as we zipped up the tent, Bruce knelt down in front of one of the corners to better close the tent. OH MY GOSH! In a matter of seconds, his leg was covered with fire ants!!! Two days later and the bites look horrible. He repeatedly said that, although it was painful for him, it would have been a huge nightmare if it had been me. He is right as usual.

Yesterday morning we walked down our street to the lake. Lots of these kinds of shells on the beach,
as well as bird tracks galore. I brought home one of our neighbor Gail's white hibiscus blooms, played around, and here you go:
What's new on the squirrel front you ask? I'm trying a new tactic that Karen Tewilliger told me about during the party at Steve and Barb's house. She's a real animal lover with so many you just wouldn't believe. Professing my distate for squirrels, she disagreed saying she rescues them! Her idea of a deterrent was to smear Vaseline on the pole and in our case the little bowl which was supposed to work as a baffler. It did not, as we all know, only to well. I went to the Dollar Store, got what they had, in this case Cocoa Butter Petroleum Jelly, and smeared away. Today I saw not one on the Nuttery which may be a good sign. This afternoon, while working in the yard, I heard what I thought was a woodpecker. Shading my eyes and peering up into the oak tree, I saw no evidence of a woodpecker. Hmmm.......

It wasn't till a bit later when I heard it again that I discovered a damn squirrel gnawing away on the kayak. Really, it is pathetic. I'm trying a watered down bleach spray for that, but obviously, I have not re-sprayed it often enough. What's a girl to do? Smear the kayak with petroleum jelly perhaps?

After last week's busyness, this week has started slowly. I miss Bruce, and I'm slightly concerned for Baxter. I suppose I'm experiencing a little let down which is only natural. There will be no shows until the fall and at this point I'm trying to determine how I feel about continuing the Winter Garden market. Bruce's work schedule soon will be very demanding with potentially the entire work week spent in California. Do I want to be gone both days that he is home? Probably not. Decisions, decisions.

Another thing that has me slightly unsettled is that when I'm out selling, people tend to buy the same things over and over. I want them to like some new stuff. Have I used up the little bit of talent I had? I feel like a singer who has to sing their original hits despite the fact that they've been making music for decades. When I looked over last years sales at Mayfaire, the same prints are selling this year. This job, while it seems pretty easy, is harder than you would think. But then again, it's not rocket science, now is it?
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