Tuesday, August 16, 2011




A refreshingly cool 54F start to the day had me putting on a long sleeve flannel shirt for our morning walk.  The Season change is well underway and it is two months from yesterday that we hope to have the big wheels rolling once again for another fine winter season somewhere in the Southwest. 



On our way to Mitchell yesterday Kelly pulled out a piece of paper with some more Doggy names written on it.  Eve is a fine name but we were wanting to change it up a bit and make it our own.  We were trying to think of a name sounding similar to Evie but a name we can stretch around into some nicknames as well.  Kelly suggested Phoebe & I liked that right away.  So, as of today we exchanged the human O for a doggy E making it Pheebe.   From Pheebe, her nicknames will take on sounds like, Pheeber, The Pheebs, Pheebiliscious, Pheeber Fever, The Pheebsterson, Pheeber Gator & on & on as we get to know her better.  So, I guess it is official.....our biggest Girl’s name has now been changed from Evie to Pheebe. Smile  (pronounced Fee-bee)


A commenter had recently mentioned how good it was of Pheebe to come when we called her. Luckily, Matt her former owner worked with the Pheebs & taught her to come on a whistle or whenever her name was called. I noticed right away that she also understood the ‘Stay’ command so that has been a big help for us as well. Biggest problem we are working on is to keep her from jumping up. We never had this problem with the other guys so it is new for us. She is such a happy and excited dog that she is always trying to jump up & put smooches on our faces.

Nice walk with the Pheebs in the forest again this morning and I must say I have never seen a dog so full of energy or run so fast. I swear she hit 300 mph at one point racing around the Park’s Pond. She scared the Ba-Jeebers out of a couple rabbits & even took after a low flying Robin. I’m always worried she will run so fast she will rocket right out of her own fur.  With the way she races around our 2 back yard sheds we have renamed our backyard, the Pheebe 500.   She is such a sweetheart.

I really must get my Nikons dusted off & get myself out on some more photo shoots shortly.  As the landscape now begins to slowly change there will be lots of new shooting opportunities again.  As mentioned before, photography is a lone hobby for me.  By that I mean, it’s a hobby I enjoy doing alone.  Whether it’s cruising a country road, walking a forest path, chasing down a butterfly or photographing a street lamp in the middle of town. It’s something I enjoy doing now in the stress free peace & quiet of my own mind.  Years ago I belonged to the Stratford Camera Club and I enjoyed it then.  But that was then.  Learned a lot, met a bunch of great people & enjoyed my time while I was a member.  But, going out with a group of people holds no interest anymore.  For me personally, I find it just too distracting.  It is the same reason hiking clubs hold no interest for me.  Too many people, too much noise, too many distractions.  The last thing I want to hear in a still forest or along a solitary mountain trail is the sound of people talking.  


I am at a comfortable place with my photography now.  As stated before, I have no interest in trying to sell any of my stuff.  That just creates unneeded pressure.  Not being a competitive person I do not care for entering photo contests.  Printing my photos & hanging them on walls holds no interest for me just as any kind of commercial work is not up my alley either.  To keep my hobby fun & interesting I have to do it my way.  So, when I head out with my cameras, I head out alone & just enjoy the quiet beauty of my surroundings.  If I mess up a photo, it doesn’t matter because much of the enjoyment just comes from the fact of being out & about in Nature whether a picture is taken or not.  Awhile back I had a post entitled,  SEEING WITH A PHOTOGRAPHERS EYE  which kind of explains why I enjoy photography.  And of course, it explains why photography is such a great hobby.


Here’s a little photo tip for this time of year & I was reminded of it this morning on the trail.  Two things come into play which have to do with the position of the sun & the cooler night air.  With the earth still warm from summer & the night air becoming cooler due to the earth beginning it’s tilt away from the sun it creates a lot of condensation in the night air which shows up these mornings as a heavy dew on the grass.  That heavy dew also settles on Spider Webs.  If you can get out early while the rising morning sun is low in the East & face East you have a good chance of finding many beautiful back lit spider webs.  Fences are good places to look as well as old iron bridges.  Tall grass in ditches or fields will have all kinds of spider webs.  You will wonder why you had never seen them before.  It’s the combination of water droplets on the webs plus the low angle of the sun shining through the droplets that make the webs stand out like pages in a book of Fairy Tales.  The webs have basically always been there but you just couldn’t see them before. Oh, and if you do decide to head out in search of early morning Spider webs you had better wear rubber boots because it’s going to be wet out there for the next couple months.



We are steadily adjusting to our new computer and despite all my usual blusterings, things are falling into place.  Just going to take a little time getting used to the changes.  Again, our biggest stumbling block is getting our address books successfully imported into our new email system.  All the emails are there but they are jumbled and we haven’t figured out a way to easily organize them once again into their respective address books.  So, my email correspondence which has been really suffering these past few years is really upside down right now.  One of the Windows Live mail features I like is that it uses basically the same format and icons that Windows Live Writer uses and for an aging Mouse like myself it is easier and better for me to stay on the same old familiar and well worn path.  Really like how small our tower is now and here is the skinny on what we have……Lenova  M75e, Athlon-B22 – RAM: 4GB – (with room for an additional 12GB) – 320GB – DVDRW – Microsoft Windows 7 Professional 32 – bit – ATI Radeon 3000.  Nope, none of that makes any sense to me either.



And, I have a glitch in our newly downloaded Live Writer.  If I go back in the text to correct a spelling mistake, add or rewrite something, the curser seems to gobble up the letters to the right when I begin typing again.  Some kind of letter formatting problem I think.  I remember having the same problem one time years ago in one of our email writing programs but haven’t a clue how I fixed it.  Very irritating.


Some folks wondered why I don’t care for Hotmail or Gmail.  It’s the annoying advertising I don’t like in Hotmail.  Gmail has lost emails on us & just recently, while typing an email had the whole email just up & vanish on me.  Just like that & it was gone & I was unable to find it anywhere.  No idea what happened or what I did.  Kelly has never cared much for Gmail either because of glitches.  We do have Yahoo email as well but it wasn’t until an email from Red in California rolled in this morning that I even remembered we had Yahoo.  I will have another look at that.


By the way, you can see a live web cam view of the sparkling sandy beach at Deer Park Lodge where Kelly works any time you wish, as long as the sun is up in our part of the world. I’ll have to pick a time one of these days & take Pheebe for a walk on the beach there & sync a time for us to step in front of the camera & say Hello to y’all........Smile  DEER PARK LODGE WEB CAM

THE LAST PARAGRAPH:  Keep in mind that any opinions expressed in my posts are just that.....my opinions.   Oh, and nearly forgot…..Wednesday afternoon Kelly & I are off to the Huron County Playhouse near Grand Bend Ontario to see, ‘Blue Suede Shoes: Memories of the King.’  These musicals are always sooooo well done & sooooo excellent.


GROANER’S CORNER:  The aspiring psychiatrists were attending their first class on emotional extremes. "Just to establish some parameters," said the professor to the student from Arkansas, "What is the opposite of joy?"
"Sadness," said the student.
And the opposite of depression?" he asked of the young lady from Oklahoma.
"Elation," said she.
"And you sir," he said to the young man from Texas, "how about the opposite of woe?"
The Texan replied, "Sir, I believe that would be giddy-up."



PHOTO ALBUMS http://picasaweb.google.com/stargeezerguy/

The only thing better than right now will someday be the memories of right
now...... AL.


  1. I am real happy so far with my new Lenova "ideapad" laptop. Sounds like your new beast is loaded to bear!

  2. A really cool eye made that photo. I hope you know that I love dogs. They make my life better! Thanks for your blog.

  3. I kinda like Evie, but you certainly have the opportunity to change it up before she gets too old.....she is a gorgeous dog and seems to be just what you two / three needed....
    It's almost October...start planning...I wish we could....

  4. My hubbie's name is Phil, but his granddaddy always called him Pheeps. So do I, sometimes.

  5. love Eve's new name..Pheebee!..so cute..

  6. I like the name Pheebe, it suits her happy face.Two months will fly by,I hope Pheebe like the southwest, does she bark very much?
    We had a cool morning also.

  7. Al, the problem with the letters disappearing could be something as simple as pressing the insert key. On some keyboards it acts like a toggle switch, turning the insert mode off and on. If it is on, new characters will insert into your text. If off, it will gobble up letters to the right. Not sure if this is your problem but it wouldn't hurt to try. Insert key is generally on the top row where all the function keys are. Good luck. Loved all your almost fall photos. I also like to take pictures of dew kissed spider webs - and even better after a frost. Pheebe - wonderful name.

  8. so glad the visit went so well with Uncle Harry and Pheebee :) and so happy to hear that she is so loving and trainable...the jumping is a hard one...so I will druge (is that a word?) up a possible simple solution from my past dog training days...take a soda/pop can and put a couple of pennies in it...tape it at the top so they can't fall out...use it as a shaker with a firm slightly raised voiced NO and OFF when she jumps...another thing that helps is when you come in and she 'jumps' on you immediately turn around put your back to her and walk away and don't go back until she sits on command...then reward and praise...she is a lovely girl...great pictures today and great photography tips..thanks...

  9. Pheebe is a great name and it's so close to Eve that she won't have any trouble getting used to it. I don't think you'll have much trouble with training her not to jump up as smart as she is.

  10. When that happens to me Al I just hit the "insert" key and the problem disappears...........for a while anyway!

  11. Hey Al

    Funny how we give nicknames to our dogs. Our Pug is named "Doug" (aka Doug the Pug), but he also answers to "the Dougster", "Dugger" and "Comheredoug". He also gets wound up to "goforawalk".


    Bill in Nebr.

  12. Al

    You could try and depress the insert key on the right side of the key pad to fix the editing problem.


  13. I guess I've been more fortunate with Hotmail. Not sure. I "started out" using resident email programs like Outlook (or whatever, can't remember) but then with all the moves (first one being to Puerto Rico) it started to get annoying letting everyone in on my new resident email address. I'm too technically challenged to figure out how to make it all work, so in the interim period of over ten years or so, I've just stuck with web mail (hotmail, gmail, yahoo) and use or give out each one in descending order depending on how much extra "stuff" I think I might end up with.
    You're right about the ads though. It can be annoying, but so can the entire internet. AND, I've lost stuff. Hotmail has improved that recently by saving your message as a draught. That helps. I haven't lost anything for a long time since they made that improvement.
    And you can read that word "improvement" with a grain of salt of course.
    Everyone's mileage will vary.

  14. I just have a doggie observation to make, actually unrelated to today's post, but one you will understand. My sister-in-law passed away Sunday before last. She had adopted two of my three chihuahua (we actually call it chiwawa, but that's a different story) puppies, we kept the third. They have visited each other frequently over the last 12 years. When she passed, her two howled and howled for a long time. When I came to visit my brother-in-law, they jumped in my lap, sniffed their brother's scent on me (I guess), and began howling mournfully. I held one of them in my lap for the funeral service, my brother-in-law held.the other. I know they knew we were saying good-bye. My thought is that as sad as it is for a human to lose a dog, it appears to be sadder still when a dog loses a human. Your new sweet Pheebe looks to be a great little friend for Cora, whom I have fallen in love with. Hope to run into you guys some day on the road!

  15. Loved the groaner today Al! And Donna K is right about the insert key, sometimes you just press it inadvertently.

  16. Mornin' Al,

    * Glad to see a photo of Pheebs on the blog now!
    * Yep, expeditions with the camera are best experienced alone.
    * Will be walking the path of computer switch-over soon, too. Dave's laptop is cratering, so he'll get mine and I'll get a new one . . . a Lenovo IdeaPad.
    * Autumn is approaching here with cool mornings; just waiting for the big tree out front to start changing colors!

  17. A. Pheebe is a good name!
    B. Cobwebs are great unless (1) they are in the house, or (2) you walk right into one.
    C. Have you tried the Insert button when your editing gobbles up letters? That usually helps me when that happens.

  18. Beautiful pics as always. Glad you settled on your name for your new family member. Pheebe sounds a lot like Evie so it makes it easier for her to adjust.
    Keep up with your grand photo hobby, you really do have the "photographer's eye"