Friday, October 31, 2008

Happy Halloween!!!

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Pere Lachaise Cemetery - Part Three

I figured I better finish up with the last of the Pere Lachaise photos while it was still October.

This fellow was pretty neat - I think he's a griffin.

I love the time worn texture and faded color of her long sleep.

If you recall, after being intrigued by a short story about it in the movie Paris, Je 'Taime, I wanted to see Oscar Wilde's grave. Here it is. I should have taken a photo from the front as well, guess I forgot. Apparently along with all the lipstick marks, the angel's penis has been knocked off several times and for awhile was used as a paperweight at the cemetery office.

I don't know much more about him than I read at his Wikipedia site, but from what I've learned, I have to think that he might be enjoying all this postlife attention and "grafitti".

A much more traditional design, a small cherub peeking around the edge of a stone.

Is this a book of reckoning or some symbolism I'm supposed to know?

A very sweet young statue. These soft, flowing, sad, angsty designs seem to be specific to the Paris cemeteries. At least, I mean I haven't seen the same sort of style anywhere else I've visited, which isn't that many places, so that doesn't really count for much.

Here's another example of the style I mean. It's almost as if they're slowing melting away in the sun and rain.

Close up. I wonder if the man's face was intentionally made to be darker or if it's just a fluke of seasoned patterning.

A pelican? Not exactly your typical gravestone sculpture.

And the last photo I have to share - a much smaller version of one of my favorite pieces in the Louvre. What's she doing here?

It's been too much crazy busy fun to do much online since the going-on-two granddaughter arrived so, wow, we're almost through Halloween, Samhain, and Dia de Los Muertos and then the Post Spooky Challenge is over! That went a lot faster than I thought it would. I was worried I'd run out of things to post and instead I didn't have time to post everything I wanted to share.

Although, knowing me, you're likely to find some quirky and spooky stuff posted here all year round. Usually Halloween comes and goes and I'm still hanging on to the season almost through Thanksgiving (which, hellooooo, is totally out of order - we should celebrate it before Halloween, like they do in Canada - makes much more sense).

But this year I find, surprising myself, I'm already looking forward to moving into the Yuletide season. I think because I'm very determined to make a lot of homemade gifts this year and so I'm ready to hit the studio as soon as the the jack-o-lanterns have started to mold. I've also got a Yule Swap idea planned and I hope to have the guidelines and a button ready in time to let folks know about it when they come visiting for the Dia de Bloglandia party on November 2.

Are you ready for the big night tomorrow? Got your pumpkins carved? (we don't - we'll do it tomorrow afternoon) Bought candy for trick-or-treaters yet? (we have) Got your costume ready? (Lisa and Joli do, I'll just be throwing on my typical witchy apparel tomorrow) What are your plans for October 31st?

Haunted House on Highway 395

Another house I took photos of three weeks ago. Now those oak tree are probably a blaze of sunset colors of orange and gold but it's about a 25 minute drive out of town and at the price of gas, I'm not gonna be back out that way so I guess we'll just have to imagine it. As it is, I've wanted to photograph this house for fourteen years and just finally got around to it this year. It's on the same highway as the shoe tree and I often see people pulled off at both the tree and this house to take photographs.

A woodpecker helping to weather the wood.

A thin slice of blue.

Is that the wind moaning? Or the old stump howling?

I wonder what that odd silhouette shape is against the light of the back window?

From little acorns....

Some day, the earth will swallow up the house and it will be gone.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Haunted House on Riverside Road

I've been somewhat amiss on posting truly Spooky. It's been more "autumn-y". Certainly seasonal and there's been a few spooky tidbits, but I thought it was time to get back to something a bit more on the scary side.

I was going to put up all the spooky houses I've photographed in one post, as we're running out of October here (how did THAT happen?), but there were just too many cool photo to share in each shoot. So, here's house number one -

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Playing in the Leaves

One of the things on Lisa's To Do List while she was up for a visit was to go up to the Chester to wander around the shops and be in the trees. She said she doesn't really think about it until she comes up to visit, that they don't have a lot of trees in southern California. So she gets her tree fix while she's here.

Jeff and I were just gone up to Chester to see the autumn colors and have lunch last week. We had a very nice afternoon but it turned out there really wasn't much color yet. These trees were still green then. Well, that red one had started to turn, but the big ones weren't showing any color yet. Look at them yesterday!

There were no leaves in front of this shop last week, except the fake ones wrapped around the stair railings.

We had lunch at our favorite little spot. The weather continues to be Indian Summer pleasant, in the 70's, so we ate on the patio. Joli was fascinated by the "table rocks" (they have rocks on all the outdoor tables to help hold down napkins or sugar packages or anything else that might blow away in a breeze). Here she's practicing her waitressing skills by cleaning off the porch railing.

We went to a couple of shops after lunch. I showed Lisa the new "new age-y" shop. They were so sweet to Joli even though the shop was filled with lots of things a wee girl could get into. Contrast that to a local variety shop that has a really great stock of fabric, art supplies, paper and party goods, and home decor items. We walked in the door and the first thing we did was make sure we loudly expressed the rules to Joli - just look with your eyes, don't touch. And despite modeling perfect child watching skills, the owner walked around all but glowering at us for having the nerve to bring a small child into her shop.

Actually, the owner has been glowering at us, small child or not, for years now. When they first opened she'd follow me around as if she suspected I'd be tossing a couple bolts of fabric into my purse or some candles into my bra (ha! I don't wear one!) the minute she didn't keep an eagle eye me. Obviously, what with the scruffy, suspicious, criminal aura that I exude. I'd take it personally except for the fact that she treated everyone that way. Last week she did the same thing to Hubby and I was really surprised (and disappointed, actually) that he didn't end up saying something to her. Usually I spent a lot of time worrying about what sort of inappropriate "did he just say that outLOUD!?" comment my husband is infamous for making in public. This time it would have been totally appropriate for him to turn it around on this woman and see if he could shock her out of her totally rude behavior. Unfortunately he chose that afternoon to hold his tongue.

So, here I was there again. I suspected it would be like that but I knew Lisa really wanted to check out the paper supplies. And why do I keep going back there? Well, the owners are not always there and there are some really lovely women who work in the fabric section. It's not their fault the owners are so awful and y'know, jobs are tough to come by in a small mountain town. But y'know, this was the last straw. I couldn't bring myself to buy anything (even though I saw some things I would have liked to bring home) and I think it's the last time I will darken their doors. I always wonder, why do people like that even own a store!?

Now the quilt shop owner up there, which alas, was closed by the time we made it there, is a delight. She is a bit of an eccentric older woman who has her cranky moments but never to me and she adores children and dogs, always ready with a treat for both. Her welcoming personality is as important as the fact that she has a lovely, well stocked shop.

Mostly we just enjoyed the outdoors. We found the perfect little spot along one of the little creeks that run through town. Someone had obligingly raked up a big pile of leaves for us to play in.

Mommy threw the leaves up in the air.

It's raining leaves!

Joli threw the leaves up in the air. Well, she tried anyway. This is about as far up as she got them.

We threw sticks in the water. We had to grab for her several times as that soft tall grass on the edge of the water is actually hanging out over the water and Joli, thinking it was still solid ground, made to walk on it. This is here "All gone!" face after she threw her stick.

There it goes.

This is her.... I'm not sure what face this is. A cute one. Maybe she was being a howling werewolf. We watched the old Thriller music thriller in the morning and spent a lot of time practicing our werewolf growling and zombie arghing and dance moves all day.

I covered Lisa totally up with leaves and she reached her arms out like a zombie to which Joli struck a "Oh no! Somebody SAVE me!!" pose.

No pictures of me, most of me is behind the camera. All except my feet.

Except for this photo Hubby took of me with two tired out babies at the end of the day.

We also found the remnants of a haunted farmer's market. Photos over at Laume's Studio.