Thursday, June 30, 2011

Book Blurb Friday, like a horse and carriage

The clock showed 6:45 and the sun shone through the open blinds, promising a beautiful day for Callendra Martin's wedding. This would be her last morning in her parents' house until she returned as a guest with her husband. She yawned briefly, stretched mightily, and climbed out of bed, smiling.
In her ninth novel, Love Meets Marriage, author B.K. Povich keeps readers smiling and laughing as she describes the many hilarious disasters between the house, the church, and the happily-ever-after.

80 words

 Each week Lisa, at Writing in the Buff, posts a picture to inspire us to:
Write a book jacket blurb (150 words or less) so enticing that potential readers would feel compelled to buy the book.
This week's "book cover" photo is by Becky Povich. Thanks, Becky and Lisa!

To see how the photo inspired other writer/bloggers, please click

Skies between Strasbourg and Metz

We had wonderful weather on our March/April trip to Europe, and when we did have cloudy skies, they were usually beautiful like these seen from the train between Strasbourg and Metz, in France.

Photos by Richard Schear, copyright Richard Schear and Kay Davies
Posted for the Sky Watch Friday  meme.
To see other skies from all around the world, please click

I'm ready to play Thursday Theme Song

If you think you remember this song on my blog, you have a better memory than I have. I had to look it up. Yes, it's true, it was there, tagged onto the bottom of my first Thursday Theme Song post, which was entitled Take Me Out to the Ballgame. I put it in just because I like John Fogerty and this song so much, not because I was featuring it. My hasty behavior has come back to haunt me, however, because I want to feature it now, which means (kinda) using it twice. Apologies, Anni.

Anyway, I clicked on the link I used back then, and it came up with a long commercial at the beginning, and a picture of Lady Gaga advertising something else. She might be a baseball fan. She might even have sung this song, for all I know, but it just wasn't what I wanted.

Then I watched several different videos on YouTube until I settled on this one, which isn't so much a video as someone posting the song for the love of the game and admiration for John Fogerty.

It goes with my photos so much better.


to play

at me,
I could
© Photos by Kay Davies and Richard Schear    

Posted for

Hootin' Anni's
musical meme,
To see
and hear
by other

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Watery world in Matisse country, Collioure

Yesterday's post for My World Tuesday showed a painting by the famous French painter, Henri Matisse, of fishermen on the beach, heading for their boats in the Mediterranean. The sea is an essential part of life in Collioure, France, as are the crops grown on the hillsides, another of Matisse's subjects.

The water there is clean and clear, with the bottom readily visible to passersby. My husband managed to capture a couple of shots of marine life as he strolled Collioure's scenic waterfront during our March/April trip to Europe this year.

I found a shady place to sit while taking my own photos, and caught up with him later, after most of his exploring was done.

© Photos by Kay Davies and Richard Schear    

Posted for Watery Wednesday, hosted
every week by 2sweetnsaxy at T. Bruce photography, who invites us to get our eyes wet.

To see what 'wetted' the eyes of other photo-bloggers, please click HERE!

Xanadu, it's not for me, but is it for you?

I've mentioned before the opinions expressed by others when I used Google Translate. No one is impressed. But what can I do? Where do I go? What should I choose to use instead?
I looked online and found a website offering free language-translation software called Xanadu. I thought it might be interesting to try it, but it seems to be Windows-friendly rather than Mac-friendly. 
These are a few of the things I found on the Xanadu website. (The boldface italics are mine.)
Xanadu is the free language and translation wizard by Foreignword which helps you find a way through the language and translation "jungle".
Translate words or texts, find translators, read the latest language news, locate specialised glossaries and much more.
Once installed, you may choose among six languages for the user interface and help files: English, French, German, Spanish, Italian or Portuguese.
Translate words, terms or texts from/to over 60 languages and with almost 200 free online dictionaries or text translation systems.
Several dictionaries can be looked up at the same time and keyboard shortcuts enable you to instantly translate terms selected in any Windows application.
Poster from Wikipedia
Xanadu is also the name of a 1980 movie starring Olivia Newton-John, Michael Block, Gene Kelly, and the Electric Light Orchestra (ELO).
The movie was roughly based on the 1797 poem Kubla Khan written by Samuel Taylor Coleridge. The poet subtitled this work "A Vision in a Dream."
The city Xanadu is in China, in the area now called Inner Mongolia. It was built in 1252 by Kublai Khan as the summer capital of the Yuan Dynasty.
Posted for ABC Wednesday, the alphabetical meme
started by Mrs. Nesbitt and carried on by her team of talented bloggers, and now in Round 8 of its 4th season.
To see how other bloggers used the letter X, please click

Monday, June 27, 2011

Our world was Matisse's world for a while

The scenes above and right reflect the one Henri Matisse showed through an open window in the painting at the top of this page.

Matisse may have chosen his palette from the cheerful colors of the houses in Collioure when he painted this view of the tower on the waterfront.
Scattered throughout the town of Collioure are "frames" through which photographers can capture the same scenes scenes Matisse painted there early in the 20th century.



Posted for  My World Tuesday  hosted
 by the team of Klaus, Wren Sandy, Sylvia, Louise, and Fishing Guy.
Thanks, team!

To see other worlds around our planet, please click HERE!

Mag 71: fun for unfitties and others

Endeavor, Lino Tagliapietra, Columbus Museum of Art
Everyone knows hydrotherapy means movement in water, providing exercise without impact, thereby strengthening the muscles without causing them any pain.
If you’re an unfittie who can swim, I’ve got the hydrotherapy idea of a lifetime for you. Snorkeling. It’s so easy!
The most difficult part is putting the swim fins on without getting them full of sand. A spouse or friend might help you with this. My spouse didn’t, so I swam without fins, but I wore my water shoes in case of coral, and a shirt to avoid a sunburnt back. A long-sleeved shirt is best, I discovered.
You don’t even have to put a lot of effort into swimming. In order to find the greatest number of colorful fish per gallon of snorkel-worthy water, you’ll probably practice this therapeutic pastime in a warm ocean, and anyone can float in salt water. Even my husband can float, although his bones are so strong and so dense he has to keep moving in order to remain afloat in fresh water.
I didn’t get up much speed, but that didn’t matter. All I had to do was hang effortlessly on the top of the water, watching exotically-colored tropical fish swim beneath me, while sea lions swam beside me, and everyone else in our group swam past me.
Snorkeling, by definition, includes a snorkel: a tube that fits into your mouth at one end and is open to the air (one hopes) at the other end. It can be a little disconcerting if waves wash over the open end of the tube. Swallowing salt water involves gagging and coughing and other unpleasantries, all of which interfere with smooth swimming, and interfere even more with enjoyment.
Eventually, one either learns how to blow the mouthful of seawater back up the tube before swallowing, or gives up snorkeling entirely.
Don’t give up.
If I could learn to do it, so can you.

Taken from Chapter 15 of An Unfittie's Guide to Adventurous Travel, found HERE!

Posted for Magpie Tales, hosted each week
by Tess of Willow Manor. Thanks, Tess.
Tess provides a photo prompt for writer-bloggers to use as inspiration for poetry or prose. The prompt photo can come from anywhere, but this week's beautiful image is from the Columbus Museum of Art. It reminded me of one of the unfittie's adventurous travels wherein I learned a lot and had a lot of fun.
To see how it inspired others, please click

Yellow in Matisse's Collioure

Photos taken during our March/April vacation in Europe. The famous French artist Henri Matisse found inspiration in the beautiful light of Collioure on the Mediterranean coast of France near the Spanish border. So did we.

Photos copyright Kay Davies and Richard Schear.
Posted for
Mellow Yellow Monday, hosted every week by Drowsey Monkey. Thanks, Drowsey!
To see other mellow yellows as photographed by other bloggers,
please click

Succinctly yours, a tribute

White and grey vehicles followed orange and red vehicles in a parade to pay tribute to fallen weather

114 characters

Posted for
Succinctly Yours, hosted by Grandma's Goulash.
Every week, Grandma posts a picture to act as inspiration to writer-bloggers. Then she offers a choice. (Decisions, decisions!)
In either 140 characters or 140 words, we are to write our choice of prose or poetry, fact or fiction (more decisions), based on the photograph.
There aren't any bonus points for using the word of the week (this week it is "tribute") but it is fun to fit it in if we can.

To see how the photo prompted others, please click HERE!

Shadows in Colllioure, Catalan coast, France

Enlarge photos for detail.
April, 2011

© Photos by Kay Davies and Richard Schear, April, 2011     

April, 2011

April, 2011

April, 2011

April, 2011

© Photos by Kay Davies and Richard Schear, April, 2011     

April, 2011

Posted for Shadow Shot Sunday, hosted
every week by Tracy at Hey Harriet! Thanks, Tracy!

To see what shadows lurked in wait for other photo-bloggers,
please click HERE!

Pet Pride: enough of the hangdog look already

© Photo by Kay Davies    

"But, Mom, I'm so sad. I still don't have my curls back and it's been two weeks! How long is this going to take? I only want Dad to take me for walks down the lanes and alleys, but he takes me on the street, and to the coulee where we see other dogs, and sometimes cats. I just know those cats are laughing at me. Nobody makes cats have summer haircuts. Please don't post this picture on your blog. What if someone sees it? Do people actually look at your blog, Mom? Please say they don't."

Poor Lindy. Yes, some people really do look at her mom's blog. They look at the sidebar pictures of Lindy with all her curls and say, "Oh, isn't she beautiful?" but she doesn't know they understand about haircuts, and they think she's adorable anyway.

Posted for Pet Pride, which Lindy thinks is just a dreadful thing to do to her, because she doesn't feel very proud of herself at all.

Pet Pride is hosted by Lindy's friend Bozo 'way over in Mumbai, India. Lindy says she doesn't want Bozo to see her like this, even though her Mom says Bozo is still her friend anyway. It's hard for a girl to believe, sometimes.

To see Lindy's other friends on Pet Pride this week, please click HERE!

Camera Critters, Collioure, Catalan Coast

© Photos by Kay Davies and Richard Schear    

Posted for Camera Critters hosted
every week by Misty Dawn. Thanks, Misty, for keeping this meme going!
To see other critters captured by other cameras, please click