Sunday, February 28, 2010

The Grass is Always Greener

at the garden shop. Oak Street Garden Shop. These flats of fresh green grass were for sale yesterday. I'm not sure what exactly I'd do with them. Maybe I'll go back and ask Billy on Monday. ( I think it's a "spring thing"!)

Saturday, February 27, 2010

O Canada!

Totem Pole
Reg Davidson - Haida people

Today a bow to our northern neighbors in spectacularly beautiful Vancouver, BC who have been wonderful hosts to the world for these Winter Olympic Games. Of course you already know how scenic Vancouver is if you follow Wayne's Meandering in Lotus Land photoblog. This red cedar totem, by Reg Davidson, is in the permanent collection here at the Birmingham Museum of Art , and a fitting tribute.

I needed to get this posted before the USA Hockey Team wins the gold tomorrow!

Friday, February 26, 2010

Twin Peaks

Taken from 21 st Street North, looking south at the beautiful bell tower of

Thursday, February 25, 2010

All In Favor....

I have been meaning to visit Frontera for a long time, and take you with me of course. Well I went this week in search of a coffee table base and photos. I found both! Frontera specializes in hand crafted wrought iron furniture and accessories, but they've got lot more. A whole lot more. This wooden crate of hands for instance. I laughed out loud and then pulled my camera out. We'll be back.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Eternal Light

The Ner Tamid, eternal light

I've said it more than once, but I"ll say it again. I have met the most wonderful and interesting people and visited so many very special places since I started this blog. Yesterday was certainly no exception. My high school friend Lynne Cohen invited me to take a tour of Temple Emanu-el. Not only was Lynne a grand tour guide, but Rabbi Jonathan Miller also took the time to share the history of this synagogue which as been woven into the history of Birmingham. The first Jewish congregation in Birmingham, it was founded in 1882. Since 1914, it has been located on the corner of Highland Avenue and 21st Street South.

I would like to thank Rabbi Miller and Lynne for sharing this special place of worship with me and to the friendly staff and volunteers that made me feel so at home. I have many photographs to share with you all.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Glass Act

I'll be real honest here. I'm not all that in love with big, sleek, all glass buildings. The Birmingham Public Library has never been a place I particularly wanted to photograph. Well it's winter and I'm a little low on photos so I decided this would be a good time to step out of my "prissy French box", and see if I could find something there that interested me. This glass block wall was just the thing!

For my Birmingham readers, I will be teaching another photography workshop starting in March.
From Snapshots to Photographs
Visit my website for details

Monday, February 22, 2010

My Pal Riley

If you're thinking I've got a new pup, sadly no. This is my buddy Riley. His humans are Jan and Mike Dulin. Riley goes to the recording studio with Mike most days, so when I show up for work ( I use that term loosely) I'm greeted with much barking and tail thumping and the occasional slobber! I wish I thought he just loved me to pieces, but I suspect it's the dog treats I bring him. (Don't tell Mike, Riley's suppose to be on some silly diet.) Well today Jan Dulin is my guest photographer. She took this during our last snow. I think it's just great, thanks Jan! If you want to see more snow photos of Riley and fam, check out Mike's blog.

Jan's not the only one to give me the day off. On of my photography students, Marty Lange, has graciously shared this wonderful photograph. The old office building at the Watkins Brick Company in Ensley.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

China Dolls

I spotted these two adorable little girls outside
the Chinese New Year Festival at the Boutwell
Auditorium on Saturday. They were posing for
many other photographers so I just knelt down and
took advantage!

(Nobody asked me, but I wouldn't have posed
them facing the sun!!)

Saturday, February 20, 2010

A Much Needed Burst of Color

These fibrant flowers by glass artist Dale Chihuly seem to explode from the walls of the Birmingham Museum of Art. A welcome sight when everything outside is still brown and bare.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Snow Capped II

The Lenten Rose post yesterday was a cruel joke I fear, because today, we're right back to the snow photos.

As many of you know, I am presently teaching a photography class. I pleased to be featuring some of my talented students' work right here. Today, Tom Cronier's grand view of the historic Alabama Theatre in the midst of last week's snowstorm. Tom is an terrific volunteer at the Alabama, so he didn't mind a bit braving the cold for this shot! ( He also thought it would earn him some brownie points with the did! )

photo by Tom Cronier

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Hope for Spring

Yesterday was Ash Wednesday, the first day of Lent, for Christians around the world. As I was leaving the Service of Communion at my church, I spotted a few Lenten Roses that had started blooming, despite the cold and snow we've had in recent weeks. What a wonderful reminder that spring is on its way. (I apologize to the pansies I stepped all over trying to get a few shots!)

I am pleased to announce that one of Birmingham's newest magazines, B-Metro, will be regularly featuring some of my Birmingham photos on their website. I featured them here, and they featured me here!

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Ice Fountain

I spotted this gorgeous icy fountain yesterday on Highland Avenue. It was still frozen, although it was beginning to drip at the very bottom. My lucky day I think. Maybe winter isn't all that bad!

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Snow Capped

I'm sure you thought I was over it with the snow photos. NOPE!

Monday, February 15, 2010

Anticipation - Mercedes Kids Marathon

This past weekend you could find dedicated runners trekking up and down the hills all over Birmingham. The annual Mercedes Marathon is a wonderful event, and everyone in town turns out to cheer on the runners. Click here for the story behind this race. It will warm your heart.

The grownups aren't the only ones who get to participate. On Saturday morning, despite low temps and snow still on the ground, thousands of youngsters from all over the city, and other places as well, ran a 1 mile race. Previously they had all run a total of 25 miles over a 5 month program, and this was the last leg of their marathon. Two of my granddaughters, Lindley and Chappell participated this year. Mom Kathleen, who works for the Trak Shak, one of the sponsors, ran with Chappell and on Sunday, she was also part of a relay team for the Bell Center. Hooray for Team Lawrence!!!

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Big Love

Many of you know that I have had a not so secret love affair with a neighbor' truck for some time. I bared my soul about the whole thing here. Since then, he's been parked down the driveway, and I've had to admire him from afar. Sigh! Well on Friday during the snow, I drove by, wistfully glanced his way, and there he was, lightly dusted with snow. What did I do you ask? Well I pulled over, jumped out and marched right down the driveway, that's what! Looking even better with snow on his * fender!
Happy Valentine's Day everyone!!

* Merci to my technical advisor Wayne, who assured me that "the humpy thing over the tire" was a fender,not a bumper.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Another Magical Snowfall

This gives, "Oh I wish I was in the land of cotton....." a whole new meaning. Dried seed pods piled with snow, became winter's cotton crop!

Oh this was a delightful surprise. I was photographing my neighbor's beautiful evergreens, and I captured the cardinals in the background!

Friday, February 12, 2010

BADP Update - Baby, It's Cold Outside

This morning around 11:00am I went out in the car and it looked like this on
Highland Golf Course.

Now it's about 2:45 pm and it looks like this around my home~

And this

And this

became this, very quickly!

Up On The Roof

Forgive me for the corny title. Sometimes I just can't help myself. Yesterday I was in 5 Points South to meet friends for lunch. I grabbed my camera for a quick walkabout. I spotted these workers high atop Highland United Methodist Church. I have just a titch of acrophobia so I was pretty fascinated that anyone would work up there perched on those slippery tiles. This worker spotted me so I waved. He waved right back. You'll be happy to know that they were tethered in some fashion. Risky business regardless.

If you're humming Up On the Roof, here's the Drifters to sing it with you!

Please excuse the wonky angle in the top photo. I straightened it all I could. I don't know what I was doing, and this was BEFORE my wine with lunch!!

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Heavy Metal - Michael Bonadio

Add another Birmingham artist to my list! Yesterday I was at Lite Box Gallery visiting with my talented friend Kate Merritt Davis. Kate is curator for an upcoming show there beginning Friday, February 12, from 5-9. Who should walk in but Michael Bonadio. Michael is Artist in Residence/Production Manager at Sloss Furnaces. Michael will have two of his pieces on exhibit ( I have one for you today). Artist......Sloss Furnaces...... two of my favorite things!!!

And my I send a sincere thank you to my faithful blog reader, Beverly and her husband, who recognized me and were so nice to come and say hello yesterday at the Cantina. How wonderful to meet you and put names and faces together!!!

If you're wondering about the new header photo, we are expecting a little snow tomorrow night , so I thought it a perfect time to drag out yet ANOTHER snow photo from last December!

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Shhh, No Roaring in the Museum!

Earlier this week, I posted two photographs of my granddaughter Eva riding the carousel in Tuileries in 2007 on Paris Through My Lens. My dear blog friend Shell Sherree created a delightful watercolor of one of the photos, so I posted the orginals.

Imagine my surprise when I did my volunteer work at the Birmingham Museum of Art on Tuesday and found this majestic carousel horse on display. Made by the famous Gustav Dentzel in 1909, it is carved polychromed wood with a glass eye. It is on loan to the museum by Jimmy and Carol Filler. I composed the photo so that you could also enjoy the BMA's magnificent Bierstadt, "Looking Down Yosemite Valley".

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

It's Not Easy Being Green

Or so Kermit says. This wonderful old Hudson in the back room of Ted's Garage is waiting to be spiffed up I think. I'm sure you're wondering why this one caught my eye. Well when I was a wee girl, we had a BIG gray Hudson that I loved to death. I know you're laughing, because it's funny to me as well. Since that "love affair" with the Hudson I've never been all that interested in cars since. I will admit though, that Ted's red Vette up front makes my heart flutter. ( and will be one of my auction photos.) Ted and I were classmates at Shades Valley High School and for the record, I never got a ride back in.....well never mind the year!

Actually I have a very special reason for posting this vintage car today. On Thursday I will be going back to Ted's Garage for a fundraiser/auction for the Heart Gallery. The Heart Gallery asks photographers to take portraits for Alabama youngsters in foster care that want and need a loving family to open their arms and their hearts to them. I couldn't be more proud to donate some of my photographs for Fotos, Frames and Fun, to raise much needed funding for this wondeful agency. I have my fingers crossed that I'll be called on one day to take some of those portraits.

Monday, February 8, 2010


What would Birmingham do without wonderful places like Gateway Family and Child Services? Since 1891, Gateway has been helping Birmingham families in so many ways. Their mission statement says: " Gateway is preserving, strengthening, and enriching family life through quality services provided to families and individuals in need." As a teacher, I witnessed firsthand their tireless commitment to children and families. Now I feel privileged to be able to give back just a little. Again this year, I am donating some of my photographs for their fundraiser, Off The Wall on April 1, 2010. Please visit their website if you feel you can donate and for my Birmingham readers, I hope to see you at Off the Wall!

The top photo is one of the photographs I am planning to donate. I have had a little fun with it. ( Care to guess exactly what I did? )The bottom photo shows the actual building.

This week I've decided to join the Monochrome Weekend gang right here.

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Bank Chic?

There was a time, long ago, when the banks in downtown Birmingham were rather grand with their marble floors, soaring columns and interesting captitals like the old John Hand Building. Only a few remain and it sure isn't the First National/AmSouth/Regions building on 20th Street. It's all sleek and shiny and has this intersting chandelier, for want of a better term, by the elevators. I shot this a while back when I was down there getting my euros. Those grand old banks made you feel rich even when you weren't. This one, leaves me cold, and now that I think about it so did the euro/usd rate!

A very Happy Blog Birthday to our Jilly who is celebrating the 3rd Birthday for Monte Carlo DP AND Menton DP! Jilly, I've got my party dress on, and it's time for Peter to pour the champagne!

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Birmingham Rouge VII - B Metro Magazine

Birmingham has long been known for its magazine publishing industry. Sadly the economy has had a devastating effect and many of my favorites have stopped the presses or gone to Yankeeland. ( Don't make me talk about that!). Well things are looking up. Longtime Birmingham editor, Joe O'Donnell has brought a new kid on the block. B Metro came on the scene in July '09. I enjoy it because it focuses on the PEOPLE here in the Birmingham area that are making a difference in our city. It's also featured the variety of blogs sprouting up all over town, which caught my eye for sure! Joe, his staff, and I are collaborating on some exciting things for the future. Stay tuned. And you Alabama readers.......go out and buy a copy!

Friday, February 5, 2010


Move in ready except the roof leaks. Take it up with the landlord.

Yesterday it rained, no poured. I spotted this little nest and fully intended for this to be one of my famous "drive by shootings", but unfortunately I had to get out of the car. Luckily my first shot worked, because I got drops all over the lens and the rest were toast.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

100 Strangers Challenge - The Peanut Depot

Stranger # 96

Strangers # 97 & 98

A few weeks ago we paid another visit to the Peanut Depot here. Well while I was there, I met these nice ladies, who had stopped by to stock up on a BIG sack of peanuts. They were nice enough to pose on their cycles before they roared off down the cobblestoned Morris Avenue. Inside, this very friendly employee let me photograph him as well. My Strangers # 96, 97, and 98. We're almost there!!

Tuesday, February 2, 2010


Oh this happens all the time down here in the "Deep South". A few weeks ago we had over a week of below freezing temps. Then last week some really nice days, where a sweater or light jacket sufficed. This one always jumps the gun at the first hint of spring. I guess if this shrub were in a classroom, he/she'd be the ADHD kid and you'd be having a chat with his Momma about a little Ritalin. Well right now it's just blooming to beat the band. You know, we need some hope of spring around this place. How is it in your neck of the woods??

Monday, February 1, 2010

Theme Day - Wood

All I have to say is I am very thankful that France is 7 hours ahead of my time zone! I visited my friend Jilly's Menton and Monte Carlo blogs last night, and she had posted her Theme Day photos. I will admit it had totally slipped my mind. You would think after doing this for 20 months, I would catch on! And may I add a partisan comment here. I think Jilly's portrait today on her Menton blog is one of her very finest!

I found this photo in my archives. It's the well worn wooden steps leading to the dugout at Historic Rickwood Field, the oldest ballpark ( 100 years in August 2010!) in America. This one is for my friend Robert who's family founded Rickwood Field. There will be a terrific 100th birthday celebration this summer. I'll be there!

Today City Daily Photobloggers from around the world are putting their spin on the theme WOOD.