november in b&w

Got Wood 4 You

I had a great birthday! Thanks so much for all your well wishes. It was lovely.

Some nice people even gave me birthday presents - blog readers, I mean. My friend Sarah, who I met through Etsy/Twitter and lives about five minutes away, gave me some roving that I'd admired at her house a couple of weeks ago. As I was spinning it, V saw it and asked me not to sell it, but to make her a hat out of it. I couldn't say no to that.

So I made a hat from it, which I'll show you later - it's so pretty! Lots of colors. It'd be a shame to show it off in black & white.

I spun the yarn really thick and thin because I love that look and I'm going to start offering more of it in my shop. Makes great baby hats and I know a lot of photographers use that kind of handspun yarn for photography props. But I've also made a cowl for V out of it that is really pretty too and I'd like to make my own hat out of it sometime soon.

Anyway...last week I got a lovely little package in the mail for my birthday - a really cool set of double pointed needles that I'd admired for a while. Nikki is one of my Twitter contacts and she, her husband, and a few of her kids have their own Etsy shops.

Nikki's son Artemas has an Etsy shop called Got Wood 4 You - he made these DPNs out of the branches of a pear tree that fell in their yard. This is an awesome repurpose if I ever saw one.

The coolest DPNs I've ever seen

They are wonderfully crooked. I didn't have any trouble knitting with them at all - but then I love working with DPNs. They make me feel like a real knitter. And these needles made me feel like a super knitting pioneer woman.

These wonderfully rustic double pointed needles would make a truly unique Christmas present for your favorite knitter. Artemas also has lots of other really cool one of a kind things in his shop, including wooden buttons and handmade spindles.

Black Friday

This morning I was facing the window as I slept and I dreamed that that wall had been removed cleanly and that I was lying in bed, watching the sun rise through the trees. It was shivering cold out, but I was warm. The air was crisp as can be and the light looked like it should look on such a morning.

Then I woke up and it was my birthday and I had coffee with whipped cream and pumpkin pie spice in bed and opened presents. So far, so good.

We're having a few overnight guests from out of town so that means that after the pancake breakfast I'm about to eat, we'll be cleaning house like mad. Then later we womenfolk will do some grocery shopping, make a lovely dinner, and then sit around and talk and laugh and generally make merry.

While I love a good deal, I don't love crowds of people all trying to get them at the same time so I stick close to home. I hope your Black Friday is equally as wonderful as I'm anticipating mine will be, no matter where you are or what you're doing.

I planned to take all sorts of photos yesterday, but didn't. I really just took a few while we were driving home because I love playing with the shutter speed at night.

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Seems appropriate to me on my birthday. I could explain, but I don't think I will. And now, it's time for those pancakes!

If you have a black & white photo to share, please leave your link below. Thanks!

Lofts from the high $100's

This guy was on the corner spinning this sign around.


Notice the shorts? Yeah, that's November in Georgia for you. Though today it's cold enough for a nice sweater and squishy socks.


He seemed to be having fun spinning the sign around.


At least as much fun as a person can have standing around with a sign advertising real estate that's obviously not selling.


I have to wonder how much money he made doing that. And if people walking by talk to him or not.


Or if anyone who saw him there with his sign thought, oh wow! A loft in the high $100's! Exactly what I need to buy today!

If you've taken your own b&w photos this week, please link to them below. I'd love to come by and see them!

Stuck at home

Yesterday I was honored to be on the Scoutie Girl blog. I did an interview on art and process and inspiration and things like that with the brilliant and lovely Amy of doobleh-vay and one of my all-time favorite Etsy shops, Little Alouette. So please check it out if you have a moment.

And if you would allow me to lead you in another direction, I'd love for you to check out my new friend Susie's shop - MishMish Market. Susie does lovely watercolor prints, some with personalization available. She's also participating in The Miracles of Hanukkah Sale this week and that's how I ended up buying this print for V's room just a few minutes ago.

So, unless you're Alexis, who has heard just a wee bit, or Kim, who has heard the whole story, you might not know that I've been stuck at home for a few weeks now. I blame the recession and my own procrastination.


See a few weeks ago, I had an errand to run so V and I were in the car. We were on our way home and I decided to drive around a little bit and see the sights because I still don't know my new hometown very well.

So I was keeping up with traffic and all was well when we all came to a police roadblock. The officer let the car ahead of me through, but had me pull over. So he could give me a ticket. For speeding. I fail to see how I could've been speeding when the car ahead of me was not but I decided to keep my mouth shut - which was probably a good idea since the officer kindly informed me that my Tennessee license plate is expired.



Two citations and a couple of days later, we got to add a third. On his way to work, R was not even out of the subdivision when he was ticketed for a rolling stop in the neighborhood.

Oops again.


So that's about $350. Normally I don't like to complain because I feel like this blog is my happy place. I've seen in the news that counties are not making enough money in taxes. So it seems logical to me that they would think they need to go out and get that money from somewhere. But should anyone from my local police department happen upon this post (not likely, but you never know), I would like them to know that we will have to find that money somewhere in our budget. And that means that we will not be spending it in our local shops. So you're not really generating tax revenue; not from me anyway. I won't just charge it and forget it. I am staying home and not spending money.


Now, how do I do that? Stay home and not spend money? Easy - I'm a procrastinator. I still haven't gotten my new tag yet. And, because I fear another ticket, my car is in my garage. I haven't driven it since. I'll get it soon, but first I had to get my birth certificate. I know I have one here somewhere, but I couldn't find the box it's in from the move. But I got it and I was all ready to go get my license/tag when I found out that I also need my marriage certificate to prove my name change. So now I have to order that.

And it's on my to-do list, so I'm sure I'll get that done by January, February at the latest. (I'm only half kidding.)

So I'm stuck at home. That doesn't bother me too much - there's no place like home to me. But V asked me the other day why we never go to the park anymore. She will again, just not yet. Instead, we'll work our way through Preschool Art this winter and hang out in the backyard whenever there's a small patch of sunshine. I figure that if nothing else, it cuts down on the chance that we'll be exposed to H1N1 - a silver lining if I ever saw one.


Metal works

These photos were taken at the Oakland Cemetery in Atlanta, as were the rest of the photos I've shared this week.

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The property was bought in 1850 - six acres. It's a quiet, lovely place with lots of beautiful magnolia trees. When I was a kid, my grandparents' neighbors had a huge magnolia in their yard. We played under that tree for hours. I remember scrubbing the fuzz off the underneath of the leaves with my thumbs and wishing I could climb all the way to the top.

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When we were there, there was a photography club taking photos. Also young women jogging. And families checking out the history. It felt serene - more like a park than a cemetery. Margaret Mitchell is buried there.

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The sun was really high in the sky while we were there, which made for some fantastic light beneath the shady trees - though the only shade I had for the photos in this post is in the next one. This picture looked fine on my computer, but here on R's laptop it looks a little dark. May have to revisit that one in Photoshop. What do you think - too dark?

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I have a few more pictures from Oakland that I'll try to find time to blog this weekend, but now I'm on the lookout for another photo-taking adventure. No idea right now where that will be! Gotta talk to R about that.

Do you have any b&ws you'd like to share this week? I'd love to see them! Please link to your post or photo below. You can also add them to the flickr group as well. And happy weekend!


I don't usually have good luck taking photos of flowers in b&w. But I like these.

This one was in full sun, which I usually try to avoid, but I think that works because this poor flower is on her way out...

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This one was in the shade and was so pretty! I wanted to pick it. I love Gerbera Daisies. It was hard to make every petal distinct - and they aren't all distinct. But good enough, I think. I might have worked some Photoshop magic, dodging and burning and all that. But I didn't.

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It was just the other day, but I can't remember what color these flowers were now.

Whew - what a day!

Today was busy busy! I've had my nose to the grindstone all day, and I have a long list of to-dos for tonight. But I wanted to mention that tomorrow morning I'll post a Mr. Linky so you can share some of your black & white photos with me (I can't wait!).

And I wanted to share this photo with you. I like it. It reminds me of Spaghetti Junction.


R was off work today and will be tomorrow and I'm hoping we'll go some fun places between now and Sunday evening so I'll have lots more good photos to share.

Around the block

V got a bike for her birthday, so I took her outside to ride for a bit on Sunday afternoon.

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It's still a bit big for her, so after a while she wanted to take her trike for a ride around the block.

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Was really wanting to stop and take pictures of these in b&w. But V's a girl on the go and I had to keep up.

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Around the bend, we came to this yellow and green lawn, which I thought would look pretty cool in b&w.

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Feels a bit surreal to me.

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Deb, one of my twitter contacts gave me a link to a great post on the Digital Photography School blog on different ways to convert color photos to black and white.

And I found this blog, K AB A K UBA, with some pretty intense b&w photography via another twitter contact, LensBaby. (Have I mentioned before how much I want this LensBaby with the plastic optic? No? Well, I do. Hopefully Santa reads my blog [or Lensbaby. ha].)

Haunted house

We were warned right after we moved in here that the house next door is haunted.

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Every year the owners go all out decorating for Halloween and let the trick or treaters walk through at their own risk.

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For the past month or so, they've had people over a few times a week and worked late into the night to hang ghosts from the trees, set up a guillotine and hangman's noose, and create a pet sematary in the back yard.

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V's too young for all that scariness, but we watched some of the festivities from our back deck. Chainsaws, hockey masks, and strobe lights are scary, y'all! There was a lot of screaming.

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Silly me only got one giant bag of candy for the trick or treaters, and we eventually had to turn off the lights so they wouldn't be disappointed.

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By 8pm, there was a huge crowd in the street waiting to get in and it sounded like a horror movie right outside my window.

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We're planning to get 3 big bags of candy for next year.

It's almost November

I'm so excited about doing November in B&W again this year! I was looking through last year's posts just now and I can't wait to see my b&w photos this year - my emotions last year were very, very different from how I'm feeling now and I'm interested to see the effect that has on my photography. I'm planning to keep my camera in b&w mode for the whole month (except for when I have to take pictures of yarn, of course) and just see what happens.

Then, every Friday in November, I'll post a Mr. Linky where you can add a link to wherever your favorite b&w photos are posted (flickr/on your blog/wherever). I chose Friday because the last Friday in November is my birthday and because I like to have pretty pictures to look at over the weekend. Since I'm not much for following silly rules, I don't care if you took the pictures in color and converted them - heck, I don't even care when you took the photos (February, October, or 1974!). My rules are for me and you can do what you like, but I would love it if you would come over and play with me in November. As I did last year, I will link to participants' blogs in my sidebar.

Here's a button for you, or you can grab the one in my right sidebar if you'd like to post it on your blog. Just make sure it links to the November in B&W category, please.

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Also, don't forget to add your photos to the Springtree Road in B&W flickr group throughout November or any time of the year.

Thanks and see you November!

Pantry letters

Did you get your issue of Kids Craft Weekly today? I did. So V made some pantry letters. I asked her what her favorite letter was and she said C A T, so she did those. Please note the fading kitty cat stripes on her arms.


V is usually more of a I'm-going-to-do-what-I-want-and-not-what-you-tell-me-to-do kind of girl when she's crafting, but she loved this. So far, despite her ever-increasing ability to read, she shows little interest in writing. But that's fine - she'll get there when she's ready. Nota bene what was once a kitty nose and set of whiskers on her face.


Doesn't she look sleepy? That's what happens when she wakes up at 6am, all bright-eyed and bushy-tailed. If you suggest a nap, she will scoff at you. And if she took one, she wouldn't go to sleep easily tonight anyway so there's really no point.

I could use a nap, though.



I'm thinking of doing November in B&W again this year. Though I'll still have to take pictures of yarn in color, I want to make an effort to take lots of pictures in black and white and then I'll post them weekly - and I'd love it if you'd join in. More details to come; it's still early yet.


I think this autumn is going to be much, much better than last year's.

She don't ever worry 'bout what's gone

Wow. Did I just drop off the face of the earth or what?

That's what it felt like. Still does, a bit.

Now it's December and my month of black and whites is over. I felt like it was my baby, and that I let my baby down by not being here. But what else could I do? Life happens. You think you've got those ducks all lined up and then somebody comes along and knocks them all down.

Doesn't matter. The best thing to do is to pick them up and just start lining them back up again.

So, we've left the great and beautiful state of Tennessee and moved back "home" to Georgia, which is decidedly more flat and just a bit less chilly. We're not actually in Atlanta yet, though. We're in a temporary, top secret location. Though the digs are not luxurious, there is something very wonderful to be said for family who respond with an immediate and sincere "yes, of course!" when you call and ask for help. So we've got most of our stuff in storage and R is looking for a job in Atlanta. Then we'll move, yet again(!). V has been a doll, an absolute and total dollbaby. While I have looked around at our temporary home and thought oh my, she is excited that her room came with glow-in-the-dark stars on the ceiling. And who wouldn't be? What's not to love about glow-in-the-dark stars?

I truly, truly enjoyed the month of black and white. I feel like I learned a lot, but we'll see about that, now won't we? Now that I've switched back to color, it's almost shocking to me. I already kind of miss it. I'm thinking I'll make it some sort of annual event.

The move. It rained off and on the whole drive down to Georgia. Here's one of my last shots of Tennessee. Oh, I'm gonna miss me some mountains!

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I put V in the car and the two of us took off, bye-bye girls on the go, stopping only once for gas and to pick up some dinner. While V watched cartoons on the DVD player (I thank God for inexpensive portable DVD players), I sang the old Hal Ketchum song "Mama Knows the Highway by Heart" to myself, over and over.

Mama knows the highway by the songs
When she hears a good one, she always sings along
She don't ever worry 'bout what's gone
She says, "Good country music will never steer you wrong"

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Being back "home" is a weird thing for me, I won't lie. We haven't lived in Georgia in four years. Things are different in my hometown (which I have a love/hate relationship with). New shops are open, others are closed - or just gone completely, empty lots with the weeds growing up. It's too much for me to think about yet. But the houses. The old houses I love are all here; they're still the same.

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The old barns are still being used for something or other.

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The tiny, old towns are still in good order.

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And, perhaps best of all, you can find boiled peanuts in just about any town out in the country. Goodness gracious, I love boiled peanuts!

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Watson's Mill Bridge is still very much the same as it was in 1885.

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Old fireplaces still stand in fields among the cows and the horses.

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Though hunting's not my thing, it's a good thing that it's somebody's.

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I took my camera everywhere with me on the last day of November, hoping to get some good shots, but it just didn't happen. I only took two photos. The first is this old truck that now sits in the yard. Bad picture of a cool, old truck.

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And then I took this photo. It's bad, but I like it anyway. It rained here for several days, so everything was gray. These are bales of hay out in the field. I was too slow getting the camera ready and I shot it without checking my settings. Off in the distance it was foggy, which is what I really wanted to capture.

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Moving on.

Thanks to all 52 of you who left comments on my last post. Thanks to those who emailed me. It'll take me a while to get caught up, but you'll be hearing from me.

Tomorrow, I'll have a brand new banner (just a few days late), and I plan to get back to the business of life - trying to find my new normal, to smooth the edges of the chaos, to find the reason for things. Am I happy this is all happening? No. But I'm going to be happy anyway. I think that's going to be the best use of my time. And I'm starting to look forward to exploring the area where I live now and seeing it with my camera in a way I never had the chance to before.

Can I get an amen?

Your dearest wish...

Monday, the night we realized we'd be moving to Atlanta right now, we got Chinese food. It seemed like the right thing to do in that moment. There were two fortune cookies. I gave one to V, and handed the other to R. Here is his fortune.

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Right now, his dearest wish is for a good job in Atlanta. We'll keep you posted on that.

The truck is rented for Monday, November 24, and I'm hoping to be back online by Wednesday, at the latest. I don't foresee having a lot of time to blog over the next few days, what with all the packing chaos, but I'm sure I will update my Twitter here and there, so be sure to follow me if you're interested.

I don't want anyone to stop taking their b&w photos! I'm not going to stop. We'll be moving in black and white.

When I get back online, I will have a ton of photos to share, I'm sure. Please wish us a safe and smooth transition, if you have a moment. I'm also hoping to have a few moments to upload some of the photos to my flickr that I'm not going to have time to post now.

IMPORTANT: If you post b&w photos between now and when I'm back online, please leave the link in the comments of this post. (I was going to use Mr. Linky, but he appears to be ill at the moment) Just keep leaving your comments here; I'm going to love looking at the photos all when I get back. :)

But here are some for today: stranded in the forest from Diane, icing cookies from Sarah, an old insulator from Teresa, a palm and some flare from Shelli, dark and bright from ELK, Sadie in Black and White from Monkey's Momma, and I'm wishing Toni a happy birthday!

Snow day, of a sort

We woke to snow this morning and ran outside to play. Just look at all the snow!

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Ha. Not so much snow. But V made several snow angels anyway.

Then I took some photos of this bush. I don't know what it's called, but I remember breaking the barky stuff off the branches of bushes like this when I was a kid. I loved doing that.

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This thermometer used to be my grandfather's. I took a photo of it at the beginning of October. The temp is a little less than ideal here at the almost-end of November.

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It's just Tuesday and already this week our world has completely changed. It seems we're moving back to Atlanta, as quickly as possible. We'll just call it a family crisis, for lack of a better term. I'm hoping we'll be there in time for Thanksgiving and I won't have to worry about how to roast a turkey anymore. Whew! That's a relief! So ... wish us luck. We're going to need it. And if you know of any good sales-type or sales trainer-type jobs available (or any other good job-finding resources in Atlanta), please send me an email and you'll be my new BFF.

Oh at all the black and whites! Check out Teresa's son's army of snowmen, Toni's vinca vine, Alex's game night, Jen and the girls are playing outside, Liss is in need of a rescue, and visit Isabella Knox with Shelli.

It's not too late to play along. Just be sure to email me or leave a comment with your link.


I love going to brunch.

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You get to relax for an hour, drink all the hot coffee you want, and then not clean anything up. Bliss.

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V likes to play with these pegs. We don't play the intended game yet, we just make them jump to different holes. She also likes the sugar packets, which she would love to open and just eat but we have to draw the line on that one.

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After brunch, we spend some time rocking in the rocking chairs and playing with the checkerboard. She doesn't play checkers yet either, but she loves playing with the pieces.

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It always makes me laugh how you can photograph something and it'll look pretty, but really it's just a tree in the parking lot of a chain restaurant.

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It's chilly here today and we're all sweatered up - the heat is on lowlowlow until the temperature really dips later this afternoon. Then it'll just be lowlow. I'm thinking we'll put on our coats and go outside until our noses are red, then back in for some hot chocolate and marshmallows. Or maybe we'll just stay inside and paint. Who can say?

What are you up to today?

Do b&w photos make your eyes happy? Then go cheer Amy up, enjoy some fall color with Toni, rock out with Kim, touch a lovely swan and hang out in her office with Shelli, have fun with Evee at Leslye's, wish Grandpa a happy 90th with Tracy, see the fall changes at Gayle's, and talk about a still life with Diane.

Want to join us? Please do - and tell all your photo-taking friends! Just be sure to email me or leave a comment with your link. Thanks!

What I'm telling myself


For more beautiful b&ws, visit with Toni's angel and her stack of books, take a walk with Kristen, check out the R.R. Venture and more boats with Diane, enjoy Carson the cutie with Tracy and Aidan laughing by the momiji with Shelli (which has a bit of color to it, but I don't know, it works for me), tour Singapore's Boat Quay area and see a night view of the city with Howard, and then peruse the fall changes over at Gayle's.

Love taking b&w photos? Come on and join us. Just 15 days left in the month!

Greeneville, TN, Pt. 2

So, while there are many buildings to love in the downtown area of Greeneville, TN - like the Capitol Theatre ...

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... there are also some amazing, inspiring churches. I mean, wow, look at this!

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Those windows!

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The sign on this church says it was built in 1780.

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And then there are the houses. This one was my first favorite. I love how the shutters are not exactly straight.

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But then I saw this one and it was my favorite. I love all the different textures.

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And then I saw this one and I just got confused. They're all my favorites!

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There is always charm in the disarray of an old Southern home.

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And if you believe that too, you'd be particularly charmed by my house - but that's another story.

Anyway. This house got me - the lace curtains, the gingerbread details. I could care less about the gutter. Seriously. If I lived in this house, I would serve tea every afternoon.

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Do you think the people who live here can hang out on their roof? I've always wondered that. From down below, it looks like you could have a party up there.

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I believe that window above the door is called a fanlight. So cool.

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Even the not-quite-so-ornate homes have gorgeous details.

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I turned down one or two of the side streets and was floored by the number of beautiful old homes. I didn't even see half of what's there before it was time to go home.

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Can't wait to go back.

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I have 31 photos in my Greeneville set on flickr, if you care to see them all, and I will probably add some more to them in a few days. And I have 90 photos in my black and whites set. Not all of them have made it onto the blog, so check them out if you're interested. I kinda like seeing them all together like that.

Happy weekend!


Are you loving the b&ws as much as I am? Then head over to Alex's for wacky hair day, to Shelli's for blocks, to Gayle's to wait for the school bus, to Jean's to see a few old barn silos, to Toni's to see liddle lamzy divey, to Jessica's to wish her a happy birthday on Saturday, to ELK's to see her to-do list for the weekend, to Liss' where she's braved a walk on a cantilever (wow!), and to Elizabeth's for a self-portrait.

If you want to participate, please be sure to email me the link to your post or leave it in the comments!

Greeneville, TN, Pt. 1

Kind of a rainy, gray day, so what better way to pass the afternoon than to drive to a lovely little Southern town and take pictures?

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Ok, so that first picture might not strike you as lovely, but I have a thing for neglected buildings.

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There, that's better.

Oops, here comes another down-on-her-luck building. Sorry, I can't help it. I love buildings that make you wonder what possibly could've happened to them. This one is an old tobacco warehouse that was being renovated to be used as an antique car museum when there was a fire this past July. Heartbreaking. There were piles of bricks inside, and I hope that they can afford to rebuild what is left.

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There's a ton of history in and around Greeneville, a town of about 16,000 people (more or less). It was founded in 1783.

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Davy Crockett was born in the area.

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And President Andrew Johnson began his political career here.

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I loved this particular building lots and lots. I wish I could take pictures inside.

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The sign above says, "FEDERAL AND INSURANCE REGULATIONS PROHIBIT CUSTOMERS IN SHOP AREA." Technically I'm not a customer, but I don't think that'd make a difference to the federal and insurance regulators. Drat.

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The one above is the second floor of a shop downtown. How much would I love to be able to go up there and take pictures? Very, very much. Once, when I was in college, the woman I worked for was looking to relocate her shop. She tried to rent one that used to be an old theater. She had me come with her to check out the space. It was awesome. Unfortunately, it didn't work out. The owner was an elderly woman who had a requirement that whoever rented it should be of a certain religion/ethnic heritage (I won't say which, but it might surprise you) and my boss didn't fit the bill. Weird.

Anyway. Speaking of old theaters, this is the Capitol Theatre. I'll have a photo of the marquee tomorrow. The website says that the theater is being forclosed (sigh), but from the sign below, it looks like they're trying to save it. I hope they're successful.

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In part 2, I'll have some of the homes that surround the downtown Greeneville area. They're something else! And if you want to see more of the small towns I've been to in Tennessee, you can see my other small town excursions.


For more b&w photos, see Gayle's post-Halloween yuckiness and her heart for Love Thursday, Rachel's photo of a playground, Shelli's pic of V's favorite dog Banjo, Toni's bedding, Elizabeth's weimaraner (my favorite kind of dog), Kristen's fabulous holiday gift ideas for kids, Alexis' photos from around the house, and a fairy tale from Monkey's Momma.

And remember, there's still plenty of time to join us if you'd like!


What to do with all those leaves in the yard? Hmmmm...

V was running around outside the other day in the wet leaves and I didn't want her to slip, so I decided to rake several pathways through the leaves for her. I made two big piles of leaves too, for her jumping enjoyment.

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I'm sure that these pictures don't work as well in b&w as they would have in color, but I did the best I could. 

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The paths kept us occupied for a long, long time.


Then we went on safari, where we saw an elephant.


And a friendly giraffe.

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Then, once we were sufficiently chilled to the bone, we came inside for some hot chocolate. It was a good day.

For more fun b&w photos, please visit Toni's granite that's waiting for just the right inspiration, Cloudscome's pine tree, Kristen's family's circus practice (so cool!), Shelli's boy and pup, Kate's cutie all bundled up, Elizabeth's pretty petals., and Liss' lovely photo of a wedding kiss!

If you want to join in, please do - just remember to email me or leave a comment with your link. That helps me lots!

Brobee sad, Brobee happy

And V always happy.

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We love our Yo Gabba Gabba around here, yes we do. We even follow the YGG production blog (because I'm a geek like that).

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My name is V, and I like to dance!

For more fantastic b&ws, see Sheri's kids, kitty, and there are toes!, Sarah has two lovely photos that are full of texture, Monkey's Momma is trying out her new Nikon D60 (Go Team Nikon!), Toni has another beautiful picture of her aspen tree, Kristen's is black and white and a bit of green, Shelli has a sweet photo of her kitty Sophie, Jen has the demise of a bagel, ELK has photos from her front porch, and Tracey has a cool photo of her rearview mirror.

And a big thank you to Shutter Sisters for linking to all this November b&w fabulousness in their sidebar! Love you guys! I read you every day.

Are you loving these b&ws as much as I am? If you want to participate, consider yourself invited.


These are from my personal collection. I got these photos from a junk shop. They were from an estate sale of the gentleman that took the photos. From what I can tell, they were taken aboard the USS Intrepid.

The first photo is not dated.


This photo says 18 April 1945, on the back. Handwritten, it says, "Burial service for men killed in action of April 16, 1945." About this date, Wikipedia says:

16 April: During an air raid, a Japanese aircraft dived into Intrepid's flight deck forcing the engine and part of her fuselage right on through, killing 8 men and wounding 21. In less than an hour the flaming gasoline had been extinguished, and only 3 hours after the crash, aircraft were again landing on the carrier.


Thank you to all our veterans and your families for your time, for your bravery, for your sacrifices.


Two cats, contentedly looking out the window. Human walks in and sits down.

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Wylie, all of a sudden, I would prefer it if you were not here.

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<doubt begins to creep in. low self-confidence rears its ugly head.>

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Perhaps if I move closer to the human and begin purring, she will pet me and I can forget about Miss Fussy Pants over there.

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If I could just get in front of you here, Wylie, that'd be great. Yeah, thanks buddy.

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He'd better run.

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Who needs him anyway?

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Three minutes go by. Wylie comes back and stretches out near the window.

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As long as he stays over there, I guess that's ok with me.

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For now.


For more b&w photos, check out Shelli's son in his swing, Cloudscome's leaky faucet, Toni's autumn mums and beautiful aspen, Howard's walk down Waterloo Street, and Teresa's game night and lovely altar cloth.

Love b&w pictures? Then, please, join us!

Moody and grey

Ok, it seems I can't stay away from my blog for an entire weekend. I tried. I really did. But R is working today, the living room and kitchen are just about as clean as they ever get, and V is playing happily with her Baby Chloe - so what's a girl to do?

While V was jumping into piles of leaves the other day, I found this leaf on the ground.


It had a cocoon in the curve of the back of it. I set it down to rest under a bush.

You might remember the poor, old crabapple tree from this summer. Well, here's what she looks like in November.

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There are only a few apples left, rotting beneath the tree. But the crazycool knots are still there.

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And the woodpecker lovebites.

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Looks very different now with all its leaves gone.

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She's moody and grey. She's mean and she's restless. Five dollars if you can tell me the name of that song.

Ok, not five dollars. But definitely a wow, I thought I'd be the only one.

For more beautiful black and whites, see Liss' lovely flower in her starting-from-scratch garden, yellow-leaved trees and such a big boy! from Shelli, Keri gives us shadows, Elizabeth shares some heavy machinery, Cloudscome has a motorcycle and the light of life, and Toni's photo is set to a Longfellow poem.

Have you been posting your black and white photos but not seeing them here? Maybe you forgot to email me (or leave a comment) with the link! Let me know and I'll link to yours ASAP.

And if you'd like to join in, there are still 21 days left in November. Plenty of time.

V & Cottontail

As I'm sitting here, I become aware of V saying, "I love you, Cottontail. You're so sweet." That's my clue to get out my camera...

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"Snuggle up with me, Cottontail."

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"Goodnight Cottontail. Sweet dreams."

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Is it Friday already? Thank goodness! I'm taking the weekend off but I'll be back on Monday, bright-eyed and bushy-tailed. Or at least full of coffee. Take care and be sure to snuggle up with someone you love this weekend.

Here are some more awesome b&w photos: Two sweet dogs from Toni, another sweet dog from Gayle, a trick-or-treating photo from Shelli, cool junk from Keri (I want that typewriter!), stunning Queen Anne's Lace from Jessica, pictures from the skating rink from Kristen, a variety of sweet b&w's from Shaye (including a slideshow), and here's a photo of Sheri's adorable son (I want to pinch those cheeks!). I'm adding a second one from Kristen because I don't want to go the whole weekend without showing them off. They're gorgeous!

Love to take b&w photos? Want to participate? Here's the info.

It's going well

Let me tell you what V and I are having for lunch today.

Yesterday I made this buttermilk bread (recipe at the end) and it is pretty darn good. I'll spare you the pictures - I haven't yet found a way to make food look appetizing in black and white. But Sunday I made buttermilk pancakes, and so I had about 2 cups of buttermilk left over. I've been wanting to bake some bread for a while now, so I looked for a recipe and found a good one. I can't say it's very healthy, but it is tasty. Both the crust and the bread are very, very soft. I can't taste the buttermilk, but R says that he can tell it's there.

So for lunch, I sliced us each a piece of buttermilk bread, put a tiny bit of mayo, broke up into bite-sized pieces some of our leftover chicken from the other day, then balanced halves of red seedless grapes on top, and added some shredded mild cheddar cheese (V's favorite) to the top of everything to glue it into place as the cheese melted in the oven. Add a side of carrots and that's lunch. Tasty treat!

In other news, V has discovered the joy of online kids' games. She is burning up the bandwidth at Nick, Jr. and Sesame Street. She can do just about all of it by herself and that has given me some happy mama time during the day to knit without fear of hearing, "Is that for me? Can I try it on? Is that mine?" every 30 seconds. Don't want to dampen her enthusiasm, but it's nice to have some quiet.

I'd say the knitting is going well.

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I'm really enjoying myself and already beginning to wonder what project I should try next. Maybe socks. Or a hat. Since I've done a scarf for V and this one is for me, I'd like to make something for R next. I think he'd like that. Recently he asked me why anyone would want to wear hand-knitted socks (I think he thinks they'll be too bulky), so maybe I'll make some for him so he can figure that out and tell me. I think I can win him over. I'm already dreaming of some sort of pretty tote bag or something to keep my knitting in. The plastic grocery bag I'm using is poked full of holes and split up the side! Maybe I'll put that in my letter to Santa this year, which I'll be sure to send along with a pair of knitted socks.


Want to see more b&w photos? Check Michelle's cool still life pics, Gayle has some glorious guitar love going on, Jen has the cutest pictures of my favorite Bean, Cloudscome gives us autumn leaves and a Bible verse, Toni's photo looks how she feels today, Shelli has some great lines and depth of focus in this one, Mama Voss has a guilty-looking pup, and Alexis tells us that the party is over! Poor little pumpkins!

Want to participate? It's not too late...

Now here's that recipe:

Buttermilk bread

  • 1-1/2 cups buttermilk (I used fat free)
  • 1/2 cup warm water
  • 1/2 cup butter (or whatever healthy/non-healthy alternative you normally bake with)
  • 1/4 cup white sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 (.25 ounce) packages active dry yeast
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 5-1/2 cups bread flour (I didn't have bread flour. I'm not sure what kind of flour mine is, but I used it anyway)


  1. Proof the yeast in warm water.
  2. Place the butter and buttermilk in a saucepan on medium-low heat, stirring occasionally until butter has melted. Let it cool a bit.
  3. Place sugar, salt, baking soda, buttermilk mixture, and yeast in a large mixing bowl. Add 3 cups flour, one cup at a time, and mix with the dough hook attachment of an electric mixer. Gradually add the remaining flour while continuing to mix. When dough is not sticky, turn out onto a lightly floured surface. Knead for several minutes, until the dough is soft and smooth. Place in a greased bowl, and turn once. Allow to rise until doubled in size. (I don't have a dough hook attachment for my mixer, so I just stirred it until I couldn't anymore and then I kneaded it for about 12 minutes)
  4. Punch down the dough. Divide and shape into two loaves. Place in two well-greased 8x4-inch loaf pans. Let rise until dough has risen one inch above pans. (At this point, I put half the dough in the freezer for another day.)
  5. Bake in a preheated 375°F oven for 30 to 35 minutes. Loaves are done when nicely brown and hollow sounding when thumped. (My oven heats too hot! So I put it in at 325° and it was done after 25 minutes.)

Unstructured play

We spent an hour or so outside today, puttering around. The weather is perfect today! I've been shooting in manual for a while and I'll tell you, it's really hard to shoot in b&w and in manual mode when the sun is bright and the shade is dark!

After exploring a bit,

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 and throwing leaves on each other,

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we built a little fairy house.

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It's not designed for wintertime, but I think it'll do for this evening. She might need to build a little fire though. I hope she's careful! Maybe I'll just knit her a tiny wool blanket instead.

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Then we relaxed in the grass a bit.

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Now I think we might bake some buttermilk bread, just for fun.

I've got two beautiful b&w photos from Shelli today, Jessica is showing b&w vs. color, here are two from Cloudscome, I especially love the first one of these from ELK, Liss has a lovely picture from Hobart, Tasmania, and Teresa's son stayed up to listen to Obama's acceptance speech. If you're participating, please be sure to either email me your link or leave it in the comments. And if I forget you, I promise it's not intentional so please remind me and I will add you. Thanks!