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Posts Tagged ‘new england’

Recently, returning from a sunny walk, I heard Three Little Pigs calling out, “Stay positive!”

Sometimes my town is like that.

Today’s photos show that in New England it can be both spring and winter on the same day, graveyards are peaceful for walking, the deCordova museum’s outdoor art is currently free, and a candle in the window can symbolize hope.

Let me know what needs more explanation. Probably the Andy Goldsworthy art at deCordova. It’s not a mausoleum despite the graveyard theme here. It’s a kind of sculpture that will do magical things when there’s a heavy rain. It’s called Watershed.

The glass milk bottles are from a farm that delivers a range of necessities. (I’m feeling grateful today to all the delivery people in America. Stay well!)

 

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I wanted to do another photo post but didn’t have very many photos. That’s mainly because I have been doing my daily walk indoors when it’s not nice out. ‘Round and ’round indoors. Kind of dull.

So I went to a couple free art exhibits, and now I have more pictures.

In Providence, Racine Holly was showing some dramatic skies at a church. When I went in, I didn’t see anyone around. Very trusting. I could hear construction workers talking behind a screen at least. I’m sharing the two oils I liked best. They both had “sold” stickers. The second one was tiny.

Then I went to the Bell Gallery at Brown University, where there was a show of work by Brown art professor Wendy Edwards that had been recommended by critic Cate McQuaid at the Boston Globe. I find I like art that McQuaid likes.

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This artist had a lot of works related to reproduction. The giant peach looks great in the Globe article but up close was “too buch for be,” to quote the Elephant’s Child. Below are a few paintings I liked better.

While at the Bell Gallery, I also took a picture of a Brown University Design Workshop pedestal that I didn’t quite understand. It looks like a range of stamping techniques carved in different styles. But if you used one as a stamp, the words would be backwards. It’s probably just to show potential clients what can be done.

The final six photos reflect recent travels in Massachusetts and Rhode Island. Note the path of rose petals a clever florist scattered to her door for Valentine’s Day shoppers to follow.

If anything needs more explanation, please let me know in Comments. (Did you get where I’m trying to imitate Magritte?)

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Except for the cannon balls at the Civil War monument in New York City, these photos are all from my walks in Massachusetts.

The town of Concord recognizes the International Day of Peace every year by putting up the flags of all members of the United Nations. This year I sent photos of my relatives’ countries of origin to them — Sweden and Egypt.

The Old Manse, run by the Trustees of Reservations, is decorating for fall. Its most famous tenants were author Nathaniel and artist Sophia Hawthorne. Tour guides like to show visitors where the couple carved window messages with her diamond ring.

The injured Blackpoll warbler had a tough fall migration and didn’t make it through the night. I did learn from Kim that one should put an injured bird in a “small, warm, dark box for night. If living in the morning, drip a little sugar water into mouth and release.” Something to keep in mind.

The pumpkin has an important quotation from former Supreme Court Justice Hugo Black about a free press. My neighbor puts 24 small pumpkins on her fence posts every year near Halloween and inscribes something on each. This year the words are from Supreme Court justices, the 19th Amendment (giving women the vote), Massachusetts justice Margaret Marshall (making the state the first to allow gay marriage), and the like.

I wind up with another neighbor’s new tree house and a couple fungi photos. There seems to be a huge array of fungi in town this year, some of them very peculiar looking. We also have a lot of mosquitoes. Too much rain?

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I wanted to share a few recent photos. Most of them were taken by me in Massachusetts and Rhode Island, but Stuga40 sent the flower cross from her neighboorhood park in Stockholm. It’s part of the Swedish Midsommar tradition.

The KindnessRocksProject seemed like a wonderful idea. You take a rock when you or others need a little kindness and you leave a rock with a kind message for someone else. This iteration of the project was at a day camp, where children were working on the messages.

The next two photos were taken in newly preserved land along the Concord River, a beautiful area for walking and enjoying nature. After that, there’s a geranium that is glowing in the evening light. If I had taken the shot from the other side, it wouldn’t have looked nearly as magical.

Next is some street art on the remnant of an old building in downtown Providence, an area where a morning walk always provides curious photo ops.

The street art is followed by three experiments with sunlight and shadow and then two of my grandchildren at the parade on the Fourth of July.

I felt ambivalent about the Fourth this year, when Frederick Douglass’s speech “What Is the Fourth of July to the Slave?” seemed more relevant than ever and the darker parts of the Declaration of Independence took on new prominence. And to the kids pictured here, all the parade meant was candy, and things did not end well.

Not to worry. Gives us a variety of goals to aim for next year.

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This is not a fox. Or as René Magritte might say, “Ceci n’est pas un renard.”

I crept up on it slowly, slowly near the North Bridge, wondering why it stayed so still. Didn’t it see me?

So much for my eyesight: It was a statue. But I did see a real fox crossing a road Friday. (I knew it must be a fox because it trotted like a cartoon fox and had a long, bushy tail.) I have also seen a fawn with its mother and a little weasel recently.

Alas, I wasn’t fast enough with the camera for any of those. I can give you mental pictures only — the deer ambling in a leisurely way, the fox trotting, and the weasel a high-speed blur.

My other photos are mostly accounts of spring in New England, although I couldn’t resist shooting the funny bar inside an actual bank vault. It was located in a Harvard Square restaurant called the Hourly Oyster.

Next you have a view of the Buttrick House garden in Minuteman National Park, an evening shot of our dogwood, a morning shot of a neighbor’s lupines (they do remind me of visiting Sweden’s west coast last year), roses, clematis, honeysuckle, and topiary.

The last two photos are from Rhode Island — early morning at an old house and yellow iris near where Suzanne’s family lives.

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There’s been a bit of a drought in my picture taking. I got so tired of winter, and now in spring I’m reluctant to shoot the same photos I shoot every year. Although when you think about it, it’s kind of beautiful that the same crocus, hellabore, and winter aconite pop up over the same creative neighbor’s stonewall year after year.

We’ve finally had some spring in New England. The very best sign of that was a lemonade stand I saw yesterday.

Two young girls were selling lemonade and flavored iced tea ($.75, mint leaves optional) and Rice Krispies Treats ($.25) while playing duets on the clarinet and violin. They told me they were raising money for a charity that provides instruments and music lessons to children in Haiti.

They were adorable. One girl pointed out their homemade signs. She said, “We didn’t have any big cardboard to make signs, so we got pizza for dinner last night.” The pizza box provided the needed cardboard.

The other pictures are pretty self-explanatory. The crocus flowers peeked up just before we had one of our numerous late snowstorms. The gorgeous architecture and shadows are thanks to the preservation ethos in Providence.

I was thrilled to see the opportunistic pansy poking through a stone curb. And the trout lilies. I had to take two shots of the trout lilies, the only wildflowers that still flourish after I took a walking class in local conservation lands 25 years ago.

(No worries: I didn’t steal flowers from the woods but was able to buy several varieties of wildflowers at a plant sale. Sometimes a solitary May Apple shows up near the trout lilies in my yard, but it is sad and lonely. The trillium never had a prayer as it is fussy about soil and likes to hang with a group. Perhaps the wild geraniums will bloom this year.)

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Yesterday was beautiful. Everyone wanted to be outside. I walked along one of my favorite woodland trails, which connects to the cemetery. At gravesites, there were more Christmas decorations, brown and tattered, than Easter ones. I think if I were a doing cemetery remembrances at holidays, I’d remove them when I took down the decorations at my house. But perhaps family members don’t live nearby.

Pansies seem to be favored for spring.

On Monument Street, a man waiting by a gift shop for his wife volunteered as I passed, “Nice to be in the sun again. It’s been a long winter.” Indeed. In like a lion, out like a lamb.

The Easter Egg Hunt was at my house. The magnificent matzoh balls (made with ginger and nutmeg) are the work of my sister-in-law Lisa.

Whatever you celebrated this weekend I hope that your day was lovely.

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Today I thought I’d start my picture roundup with Lynn’s photo from Florida. Lynn says she was first introduced to trumpet lilies when she toured Africa with her cabaret show. I definitely don’t have any trumpet lilies growing outside my house today.

What I do have is ice, snow, and shadows. Here goes. The icicles were shot back in January. The tulips were a little joke in February (I got them in the store and planted them before the snow). The other photos don’t need much explanation. You know I love shadows.

The moose is waiting for the mail lady.

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Before we head off for vacation (actually, I’m retired, so I’m always on vacation), I thought I’d post some more photos, especially as blogger KerryCan says she likes them. The general theme is winter, which began officially with the Winter Solstice on Thursday. I already imagine that I can perceive the increase in daylight. (Well, we believe what we want to believe.)

OK, what have we here? A shock of deciduous holly berries. We need to prune these bushes, but the shivering birds get to eat first.

Two shadow pictures and ESL students dancing at one Jewish Vocational Service holiday party. The dancers here are from Morocco, Ivory Coast, Puerto Rico and Haiti. The teacher is the woman in red. Everyone brought food. I especially loved the Chinese pot stickers and the Nepalese chicken curry. My chocolate chip cookies disappeared, too.

The Colonial Inn has an annual Gingerbread House display.

My 7-year-old grandson is a fierce hockey player whether on his team (Saturday 7 a.m. practice, Anyone?) or in this backyard rink created by John.

The last photos don’t really need commentary, but I thought the lost Christmas crafts were sweet and clearly wanted to be on some child’s tree. I hope they got a home.

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I wanted to share a few photos documenting a view of New England’s transition from fall to winter. (Maybe it’s not officially winter, but we have had our first snow.)

I start off here with one of my favorite photographic subjects: shadows. These are shadows of late-autumn weeds. Next we have a view of French’s Meadow along the Sudbury River. It is nearly always covered with water from the river escaping the banks.

Concord was the site of the military funeral for Tom Hudner, Korean War hero and a native of Fall River, Massachusetts.

The classroom picture was taken December 12, when students from a Providence English-as-a-Second-Language class where I volunteer gave me the sweetest thank-you celebration. Many of them also took phone videos of me trying to replicate the dancing of a Congolese woman in the class. Now I am worried about how many Facebook pages it’s on.

The gingerbread house is the 2017 version by the woman who does one every year for the town library. Each year’s is more amazing than the last. Note the little duck pond in the lower left.

The Grasshopper Shop, a women’s clothing store, put out a tree decorated with the holiday wishes of children. How sad that one child would have to wish “that North Korea doesn’t nuke anyone.”

The deciduous holly and white pine are pictured after our first snow. The town was really pretty when my husband and I walked through the shadows cast by streetlights and holiday lights on our way to dinner that night.

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Today’s photos include two beauties that Sandra M. Kelly took at the Painted Rock in New Shoreham. I think the seal and mermaid are better than any work I saw on the Painted Rock this year, and I wish I could find out who the artist was. (NWG, if you know the painter, please let me know so I can give credit.)

The cow jumping over the Davis Square subway station has something to do with the bucolic history of City of Somerville. The mysterious door to nowhere is near my house, and I never get tired of taking pictures of it.

The next few photos are of the Sudbury and Concord rivers and include two shots of a popular canoe-rental business on the Sudbury. The antique metal pole in Wayland Square, Providence, is another mystery. Is it a lamppost? I’ve never seen it lit.

I felt compelled to post another picture of shadows, my favorite subject, plus food for thought from Ralph Waldo Emerson.

The field of pumpkins is at Verrill Farm.

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Under gray skies or sunny skies, I never tire of the beauty of Rhode Island and Massachusetts. Most of the photos are mine, but three were courtesy of Bo Zhao, Suzanne, and my husband.

We start off with the boathouse that is near the Old Manse and the famed North Bridge in Concord. You can see that the grasses at Minuteman National Park are changing into autumn attire.

On a morning walk, I saw a happy little snake where the bike path meets Sleepy Hollow Cemetery. I think it was a garter snake.

The Kindness Garden was on Blackstone Boulevard in Providence. The last time I walked by, I saw that people had taken whatever they needed of kind words, and there were only a couple left.

The picture of the sidewalk poem in Cambridge was taken by Bo. I wrote about that initiative here.

The photo of the beautiful message on New Shoreham’s Painted Rock was taken by Suzanne. And my husband snapped the funny Help Wanted sign at Summer Shack. I sent it to my cabaret-artist pal Lynn, who wrote back

Another [clam] openin’
Another show
My hand is bleeding
Please stanch the flow
The tips are fine
But my nails don’t grow
Another openin’ of
Another show

The purple flower is called Blazing Star, and it’s native to New Shoreham.

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Yes this post’s title is toying with the name of the famous John Singer Sargent painting “Carnation, Lily, Lily, Rose,” which KerryCan told me she liked.

The roses in New Shoreham are so abundant this year, I couldn’t stop taking pictures. I admire these roses because they do their own thing. They need no attention from humans. If they feel like climbing up a tree or entwining themselves with acres of poison ivy, they will just do it.

I’m also posting a water-lily pond where I saw a rough-hewn guy in a beat-up car place a rescued turtle. Other photos include a typical New Shoreham dirt road, Suzanne’s daughter’s monkey enjoying a rare respite, a deer, and Stuga40’s breakfast idea (flax seeds and pumpkin kernels on cereal).

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Well, we’re home and adjusting to the time change more easily than when we traveled east. Meanwhile, it occurs to me that I have a bunch of New England photos from both before and after our trip that I want to share. I call the first one “There Will Be Grapes.”

The yellow and white tulips have since died off, but the yard they graced has a floral display that keeps on giving.

My three shadow pictures feature the North Bridge in Concord, Mass., a wildly exuberant dogwood, and a vase of spring flowers.

Two antique child vehicles are on the porch of a home furnishings store.

The life forms by Korean sculptor Jaeok Lee at the Concord Center for the Visual Arts completely captivated me. The artist has written about making the tiny cabinet objects while experiencing health challenges that kept her from other projects.

“The healing quality of nature also motivates my work,” Lee says. “A few years ago, I developed an illness that doctors could not diagnose. While going through various diagnostic tests, since I did not have much energy, I started working with very small objects.

“I would go out to my garden for inspiration and would start to pinch small forms of seeds, pods, berries and flowers. Over the course of one year, I made thousands of small pieces that filled a Chinese medicine cabinet that I bought from an antique shop a few years ago.

“I named the project ‘Making my own medicine.’ The simple act of pinching the forms has been a healing experience that gave me enormous hope for my recovery.”

More at her website, here.

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As spring belatedly decided to show up in our neck of the woods, a Hollywood movie crew turned the town into a Christmas set, building a crèche in front of a picturesque church, decorating store windows with candy canes, snowmen, and plastic poinsettias — and spreading fake snow on lawns that had barely recovered from an April 1 blizzard. It was a little weird. One friend said she looked up from washing dishes at her kitchen window and saw what looked like a gigantic spaceship hovering over the trees. It was the boom for the cameraman.

In more seasonal news, spring flowers began to poke out. Woodland walks were taken. Mushrooms and lichens were admired.

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