Thursday, July 31, 2008


Today's photo is brought to you by the color GREEN!  I snapped this photo last weekend while attending a brunch for a dear friend's daughter.  On my way in, I passed this lovely pond with a fisherman patiently waiting for a bite.  Since I was a bit late,  I couldn't  stop.  As I left, I just had to slow down and take a few shots of this idyllic scene. What caught my eye was the lush greenery reflected in the still water. It was a "mizzly" day, but I hope you enjoy this oasis in the midst of our big city .

P.S. "Mizzly" is a southern term that means a day that is part rainy, drizzly, well..... you know!

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Red Tomatoes in a Blue Box

Well if these doesn't make your mouth water, nothing will.  Homegrown  Alabama tomatoes are the fruit of summer.  Actually I picked this photo just so I could include the tune du jour - "Hang on Little Tomato" by Pink Martini.  My thanks to Dusty Lens for introducing me to this group.  I am a shameless copycat.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Baseball Dreams Do Come True

What boy or girl  doesn't dream of a chance at bat in a real baseball park?  Well, my friend Connor got to do just that,  at none other than Birmingham's historic Rickwood Field.  For those of you who don't already know, Rickwood is the oldest baseball park in America.  What a thrill for me to be able to capture that moment when Connor got to live his dream.  

Scroll back to previous Rickwood posts.

Monday, July 28, 2008


Little did I know when I posted this photo today that I was jumping right into this week's Two Things Challenge which is UP/DOWN!  Thanks to my pal in D.C. for alerting me.  For once I am ahead of the game instead of bringing up the rear. 

These boys are having a ball swinging as high as they can go!  Isn't that what summer is all about?

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Industrial Meets Art

 The temperature was well into  the 90's when my photography buddy, Bill and I headed to Sloss Furnaces for a little field trip. ( In our defense, we did question whether it was a good plan.)   About 15 minutes into our shooting expedition we confirmed that our timing was off by about 2 months. We forged on.  The heat we were experiencing was nothing compared to the temperature when Sloss Furnaces was in its prime.  This place has been lovingly preserved, painted, and tended.   There is truly a feeling of stepping back in time when Sloss Furnaces was instrumental in making Birmingham  the "Magic City."

An earlier Sloss post  was on July 3,2008

Saturday, July 26, 2008

I Fall to Pieces

Meet "Nike" by Birmingham's Cordray Parker.  Isn't she great?  She looks like she might have just landed at the Birmingham Botanical Gardens.  I have passed her many times through the years, and she still can't seem to get herself together!  Patsy Cline's "I Fall to Pieces" always runs through my mind.  Click here to hear Patsy sing it as only she can do.  Feel free to sing along with her.

Friday, July 25, 2008

SKY WATCH FRIDAY - Red Tiles, Blue Sky

Highlands Methodist Church is probably one of the most photographed churches in Birmingham and rightfully so. Overlooking the famous fountain in 5 Points South, it's one of Birmingham's oldest churches.  Built in the Spanish Renaissance Revival style,  it is just as striking today as it was when it was built 99 years ago.  

For all the Skywatch Friday participants, click Skywatch Friday on the sidebar.

Thursday, July 24, 2008


Birmingham is blessed with many beautiful columns that have thankfully not succumbed to the wrecking ball.  Today's column is brought to you by the Massey Building in downtown Birmingham.  While most depend on their decorative capitals to give them pizzaz, these columns are beautiful in their own right.  I think these soft curves and the way the horizontal joints line up perfectly make these especially appealing.  

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Green Acres Meets City Livin'

Recently I visited a place that I have passed many times, but never stopped to explore- the Jones Valley Urban Farm.  One of its three locations is smack dab in the middle of downtown Birmingham.  I saw everything from corn , (at least 7 feet tall), melons, zinnias, and even a colorful rooster!   More photos will be posted in the weeks to come.  I chose this photo to give you a feel for the location.  As you can see , it is in close proximity to Park Place, a mixed income development, and the interstate! Please visit their website to see all the wonderful things this urban farm offers to the children and adults of Birmingham. 

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Window in Bloom!

This vibrant poppy window at Wildflower Designs at Birmingham's Pepper Place is a real showstopper.  Owner/designer Sybil Sylvester is noted for her unique and creative approach to floral design.  I photographed it (about a 100 different ways to avoid the reflection)  a few months ago for a photography class. My theme was "Euro Birmingham",  and  I thought this window looked like one you might see in Paris.  Sybil confirmed it.  She bought it at the Paris Market.  

Monday, July 21, 2008

The Four Sisters

In 1898, four Daughters of Charity founded St. Vincent's Hospital, the city's oldest hospital.  Here they are depicted wearing a more modern,  metallic version of the very recognizable habits of their day.  St. Vincent's Hospital advertises that they are "where babies come from."  For our family that is absolutely true.  My two daughters and 5 grandchildren were all born there.  The hospital has grown and grown over the years, but continues to give the same excellent, compassionate care that it is known for.  I live near this hospital and always enjoy seeing the Four Sisters as I pass by.

Thanks to my friend Amy who tells me that this sculpture was done by Birmingham artist Brad Morton.

Sunday, July 20, 2008


This is my first time to wade in on the TWO THINGS CHALLENGE.  The theme this week is People/Watch.  I decided to include one photo for both. This precious pooch looks like he's people watching.  I'm thinking he's probably guarding his TAIL!   The Pepper Place Market is a meet and greet (or sniff and snarl) for a wide variety of dogs who are nice enough to bring their masters each Saturday!  So what do you think this pup is looking at? 

Click Two Things Challenge for the other participants today.

My new photography web page is up and maybe running. Hope you will visit.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Making Tracks

I took this photo from the viaduct on 21 Street in downtown Birmingham.  A very nostalgic scene, reminiscent of days gone by when the railroad played an important role in Birmingham's history.

Friday, July 18, 2008

SKYWATCH FRIDAY - A Little Razzle Dazzle at the BMA

The metallic panels of this sculpture at the Birmingham Museum of Art shimmer in the sunlight. The blue sky and white clouds are the perfect backdrop for it.  The Sculpture Garden is  kid, adult, and photographer friendly .  It is a wonderful place to introduce children to the world of art. They can run around, be noisy and look at the eclectic mix of  sculpture up close and personal.  Who knew a museum could be so much fun!
Please click on the Skywatch Friday link on the sidebar to see all the other participants this week.

Thursday, July 17, 2008


These waiters at Chez Fonfon, on Birmingham's 5 Points District, were enjoying the calm before the storm. I caught them right before the evening crowd began to gather.  Chez Fonfon is one of Chef Frank Stitt's fine restaurants here in Birmingham.  Check one of my earlier posts for a photo of their outdoor dining area.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Patchwork Brick

I was driving down  cobblestoned Morris Avenue last week.  I had been photographing the Peanut Depot, the quaint doorways, storefronts,  and interesting alleyways it has to offer. Down near the end of the street, there were some old warehouses and a few parking lots made when vacant buildings were torn down.  All of a sudden I spotted this wall on the side of a building.  I jumped out and started snapping  pictures.  This might be my favorite brickwork so far.  The vivid colorations of the brick, the random pattern and the corrugated texture are reasons to give this wall a second look.  It makes me wonder if at the time the building was built,  they used leftover brick to complete the side of the building that they thought would never be seen.  Maybe this is one instance when demolition has revealed a lovely surprise.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Batter Up!

This is one of my favorite photos from historic Rickwood Field.  As you know from  an earlier post, Rickwood is America's oldest baseball park.  When I look at this photo I can almost see a player climbing those worn wooden steps for his turn at bat. The vintage signs that surround the field are visible in the distance.  Rickwood  Field is a Birmingham treasure. 

Monday, July 14, 2008

Red Hats

Do the Red Hat ladies do lunch here?  They should !  Looking for all the world like a group of bright red sun hats, these umbrellas shelter patrons at V. Richards Market on Clairmont Avenue in Birmingham's Forest Park neighborhood from the hot summer sun.  Lately it's been a little steamy, but every time I pass by,  folks seem to be enjoying eating outdoors, regardless of the temperature.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Look Up Birmingham!

As in most cities, many of Birmingham's landmarks have sadly made way for more modern architecture. However,  some of our historic buildings , while having undergone extensive renovations  on their lower floors, have retained the lovely architectural detailing that was prevalent in the early 1900's high above street level.  This is the first in my series that will feature their "crowning glory", remnants of days gone by,  that can only be appreciated if you stop and look up!  Today's photograph spotlights the Empire Building on the corner of 1st Avenue North and 20th Street in downtown Birmingham.  Still stunning after all these years.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Sunflower Girl

Saturday is Pepper Place Day for hundreds of Birminghamians.  It's the place to buy fresh vegetables and  fruits, flowers, herbs, craft items, and  divine homebaked goodies.  In addition,  you get to hear live music, see a cooking demonstration by local chefs,  AND you get to see everybody you know!  I always grab my camera, because you never know when you are going to walk past someone as lovely as this Sunflower Girl.

Friday, July 11, 2008

SKY WATCH FRIDAY - What To Do When You Miss Your Flight? Hitchhike!

These firemen from Station Number One in downtown Birmingham, were giving some visiting firefighters a bird's eye view of our city.  I was photographing them when the jet flew by.  Right place, right time!

Click on Tom's link on the sidebar to see all of the Skywatch Friday participants.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Peach Envy II

One of my first posts was of a little brother and sister sharing (or maybe not) a peach at the Pepper Place Market.  This is my second helping of Alabama peaches.  

Yesterday's photo sent some viewers running for their glasses or experiencing LSD type symptoms!  Perhaps the added photo will give you a better perspective.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

What Is This?

                                   Couldn't quite figure it out? Does this help???
                                 Photo #1                                                        
The McWane Science Center in downtown Birmingham is a great place for kids (and adults) to learn and play.  Somehow they never get tired of going.  Maybe it's because they do such a great job of rotating exhibits and always have exciting things for kids of all ages.  Don't miss the IMAX movie while you're there.  I chose this photo of several shiny panels on  a new addition that is under construction right now.  Had to get my lens through the chain link fence for this shot.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

The Peanut Depot, a Birmingham Tradition

The Peanut Depot on Morris Avenue has been roasting peanuts  the old fashioned way  since 1907, in the same roasters the original owners used !!  Morris Avenue is a quaint cobblestone street that has the delicious aroma of freshly roasting  peanuts 6 days a week.  Outside the depot,  you can find the remains of shells in between the cobblestones, where customers just couldn't wait to crack some on their way out.

Monday, July 7, 2008

Birmingham Botanical Gardens, a Cool Place on a Hot Day

Every time I visit the Birmingham Botanical Gardens I marvel at how fortunate we are to have these lovely gardens to stroll and enjoy.  I also ask myself why I don't come more often.  From time to time I will treat you to photos of this quiet oasis right here in Birmingham. Located in the Mountain Brook suburb south of Birmingham, it's a popular attraction for residents, visitors, and most of all photographers.  It offers a wonderful education department, tours,  gift shop, library, restaurant, and of course it's the perfect place for a wedding or reception.  On a steamy summer day, it's the coolest place around. 

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Reuse and Recyle!

Don't miss " The World Through My Eyes", an exhibition of Alabama's noted self taught artist Charlie Lucas at the Birmingham Museum of Art.  For his sculpture Lucas often uses machine parts and other cast off materials.  Twelve of his large scale pieces  are on exhibit in the museum's sculpture pit.  Recently I spent an afternoon photographing all of  the works in the sculpture garden.  It was a photographer's paradise.  I especially liked this wall mounted piece, but don't worry, I have other pieces to share.

Saturday, July 5, 2008

From High Atop Red Mountain

I am sure many Birmingham readers of  my blog have wondered WHEN I was going to pull Vulcan out of the bag.  I was waiting until after the 4th of July.  You see Vulcan, the Roman god of iron and forge,  has guarded Birmingham for over 100 years.  He is the world's largest cast iron statue. For many, many years Vulcan held a torch in his hand.  It glowed green except when there was a traffic fatality and then it glowed red.  That's been replaced now with a spear.  Vulcan Park is a great place to visit and see the panorama of the city of Birmingham, and on the other side the suburb of Homewood.  For as long as I can remember, Red Mountain ( as in iron ore) is where the most spectacular fireworks display has taken place each year. They shoot into the sky all around Vulcan.  The fireworks can be seen from vantage points all over the city.  This year I enjoyed it from a golf course near my home.  My grandson sat in my lap saying, "Cool, awesome as each one burst into the sky."  I thought about my tripod and camera and then decided to just enjoy the evening with family and friends.  We had a cool breeze, believe it or not, and ooohed and aaahed till the very end.

Thanks to my friend Mary who sent me this.  Sorry it's a day late for the 4th but I love to listen to this anytime. France Sings for the USA!

Friday, July 4, 2008

"God Bless Amiracle"

Well, that's how my granddaughter Laura Kate sings it, and we think it's the cutest thing we've ever heard!   I know that CDP will be inundated with flag photos today from those of us in the good ole U.S.A., but I couldn't resist this photo I just took in downtown Birmingham.   

This is SKY WATCH FRIDAY . Go to Tom's place to  see the list of all participants.

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Sloss Furnaces

No trip to Birmingham would be complete without a visit to  Sloss Furnaces.  Iron was produced here for nearly 90 years, giving rise to the city of Birmingham.  It has been designated a National Historic  Landmark.  

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Straw Hat Man

This gentleman has a booth at the Pepper Place each Saturday.  You can always count on him for some mighty tasty vegetables and a friendly smile.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

THEME DAY: Just Say "No" to Poop!

NO Signs are the  City Daily Photo Theme today!  City Daily Photo sites around the world are featuring  photos posting "No" signs from their city.  Here in Birmingham,  this clever "No Poop Zone"  sign was spotted right in my neighborhood.  What a creative way to remind the neighbors of the proper doggy etiquette.

For links to other Theme Day participants,  click  Theme Day on the sidebar.