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S/V Mari Hal-O-Jen
Though we travel the world over to find the beautiful, we must carry it with us or we find it not. ~Ralph Waldo Emerson
Save on Gas Money; Key West edition
July 27, 2008, 9:06 am

I think this qualifies as an only in Key West moment.
Do you?

April's Shower of Photos
Bird on a Wire
July 20, 2008, 10:05 am

The white crowned pigeon is back for the summer. Only occurring in extreme southern Florida this bird is large and eye catching. It has a tendency to fly with its head carried higher than other pigeons, resulting in a profile reminescent of a Viking ship prow.

It's preferred food is the Poisonwood Berry and its preferred sitting location is on a wire. The result is long hedges of poisonwood along the electrical and telephone wire routes.

The white crowned pigeon was famously painted in the Keys by John James Audubon using a branch of the geiger tree from the home of Captain Geiger in Key West. Here's the painting .
I wonder what the birds sat on before wires? Clotheslines?

The flutter of blue pigeon's wings
Under a river bridge
Hunting a clean dry arch,
A corner for a sleep--

~Carl Sandburg

Nature Study
My Datebook, July 15
July 15, 2008, 11:59 am

Stop by Peggy's for more entries.

Outside my Window...
Wind and waves, the boat is jerking today!

I am thinking...
About really changing up our ed plans for 8th grade. I'm trying to listen closely to Marianna this time around and she seems to be telling me to challenge her!

I am thankful for...
My 3:15 appt to pick up my new glasses!
ETA: Aaargh! Just cancelled!!!

From the kitchen...
Grilled Chicken Breasts marinaded in Raspberry Chipotle Sauce over lettuce tonight.

I am creating...
A little fun with Kathryn!
They don't come more succinct than this. All answers to be a single word. No more.

1. Where is your cell phone? Planner
2. Your significant other? Awesome
3. Your hair? Honey
4. Your mother? Literary
5. Your father? Mathematical
6. Your favorite thing? Candles
7. Your dream last night? Sewing
8. Your favorite drink? Lemonade
9. Your dream/goal? Guitar
10. The room you're in? Saloon
11. Your church? Catholic
12. Your fear? Hadephobia
13. Where do you want to be in 6 years? Published
14. Where were you last night? Domicile
15. What you're not? Magician
16. Muffins? Cranberry
17. One of your wish list items? Rug
18. Where you grew up? Colorado
19. The last thing you did? Grammar
20. What are you wearing? Cut-offs
21. Your TV? Non-existent
22. Your pets? Non-existent
23. Your computer? Lovely
24. Your life? Incredible
25. Your mood? Varigated
26. Missing someone? Perchance
27. Your car? Pontiac
28. Something you're not wearing? Hat
29. Favorite store? Anthropologie
30. Your summer? Torrid
31. Like(love) someone? Yes
32. Your favorite color? Cerulean
33. Last time you laughed? Today
34. Last time you cried? Winter
35. Who will repost this? ????

I am going...
to wash dishes. Again. Oh joy.

I am wearing...
Faded cut-offs and a white tee with turquoise flowers on the hip, my new tiny miraculous medal on a beaded necklace and jangly bracelets.

I am reading...
A Victoria. Again. :)

I am hoping...
To figure out this new speedflash thing that Hal bought me.

I am hearing...
Chopin's Polonaise for Piano #6

Around the home...
Beads, bracelets, pendants, anklets, locket, chains, chains, chains! I just untangled a monster mess of a jewlery box.

One of my favorite things...
Blueberries, strawberries, raspberries, blackberries...any berry!

A Few Plans For The Rest Of The Week...
A trip up the Keys late in the week, perhaps even meeting up with a friend somewhere or a visit to Bahia Honda perhaps!

Here is a picture thought or two I am sharing with you:

First go at Bowlingo

Candled Vase
July 14, 2008, 1:10 pm

Isn't it pretty? Nearly as fascinating as candling eggs!

April's Shower of Photos
Lighter than Air
July 12, 2008, 2:53 pm

My second round of photos for Renee's photo challenge.

The last lighter than air aircraft to land at Boca Chica was in 1903 (or thereabouts). While working on another construction project they happened upon the century old blimp pad, dusted it off and opened it for business this week.

They are so quiet!

April's Shower of Photos
Bread, Roses, and Gold Coins
July 10, 2008, 10:01 am

My first photo for Renee's Scenes from a Summer's Day Challenge.

Tiny hot roses that I picked up for St. Elizabeth of Portugal's Feast Day, she's also known as St. Isabella of Portugal. What I love about cooking liturgically are the connections we're making. St. Isabella of Portugal is the great-niece of another very famous saint, St. Elizabeth of Hungary! Inspired by her aunt, also a great queen, St. Isabella cared for both the rich and the poor within her realm, which incidently might be Marianna's favorite part of this biography, as Isabella grew up a Princess of Aragon. :)

Why the roses though? Isabella of Portugal was not just a pretty praying queen, she was a highly talented architect and engineer. She built many buildings and churches, developing her own unique style, now known as the Isabeline style of architecture. While visiting one of her construction sites she gave each workman a single rose blossom in appreciation for their dedicated work. They tucked them away reverently in their satchels and upon completion of the work that day, they found, not the rosebuds but a gold coin instead!

So I kept the connections super simple for this busy weekday dinner, bread and roses and gold coins for a new-to-us incorruptible saint. I'd love to tell you that I slaved over a Portugese feast fit for a queen, but I didn't. We had spaghetti.


Now I was asked where I go for my info and planning, three great sites for Isabella are the
Patron Saint Index, EWTN's Isabella of Portugal and a general selection that is easy to use for dates in calendar form that I use all the time -
Catholic Culture's Liturgical Year section.
And never forget Google, takes time to sort through, but it is like a treasure hunt, you'll never know what you'll find!

Finally, you'll be thrilled to see that Marianna has finally had a moment to post her recipe from Saint John the Baptist's Feast for Grasshopper Pie on her blog, Rising Phoenix. Easy and delicious, especially the next morning with a cup of coffee!

Our Faith
My Datebook, July 7
July 7, 2008, 3:51 pm

Stop by Peggy's for more entries.

Outside my Window...
Towering clouds, rumbling thunder, no rain yet though!

I am thinking...
about Hurricane Bertha, she is intensifying so much quicker than they were predicting.

I am thankful for...

From the kitchen...
the St Paul's Sandwich again - egg foo young patty with bean sprouts and minced white onions; white bread, plenty of mayonnaise if Marianna has anything to say about it; and various toppings, hopefully lettuce, tomato, and pickle. So addictively good.

I am creating...
A summer Nature Study course using the Outdoor Hour Challenges from Barb at Handbook of Nature Study.

I am going...
to get my contacts on Wednesday! So happy!!!

I am wearing...
Gosh, I'm wearing the same outfit I had listed from the last Datebook I'd posted! A buttery yellow ribbed tank and khaki shorts.

I am reading...
Between books currently, haven't quite decided what I'm desiring next. Suggestions?

I am hoping...
to get together with some friends this evening for cocktails under the tiki hut.

I am hearing...
the wind picking up, the halyards are beginning their rhythmic whacking on the masts nearby.

Around the home...
Nature Journals and watercolor pencils, I've been taking stock of what we have and what may need replenished soon!

One of my favorite things...
Taking photos!
Speaking of photos, have you heard of Renee's Scenes from a Summer's Day Photo Challenge? Isn't that the prettiest, summeriest button ever? I've got to get it loaded into my sidebar today. Renee, I'm totally in for the challenge, should be a hoot!

A Few Plans For The Rest Of The Week...
It is the beginning of the month, time for the cleaning to kick into high gear again!

Here is a picture thought or two I am sharing with you:

The pastry chef and her blueberry galette.

The pièce de résistance.

I'm back and I have an update
July 5, 2008, 4:20 pm

I'm back!!! I traveled all the way to the mainland, stood in a long line at Best Buy, made a terribly difficult decision in the camera department and am now the proud owner of a DSLR Camera!

Wait. Didn't I own a lovely Nikon D40x that was used for the April Showers of Photos? Oh dear, did I neglect to mention a little tumble that D40x decided to take late one night? All the way down the companionway, skittering into Marianna's V-Berth before coming to rest upon the floorboards. That left nothing more than a nice exhibit of the interior mechanisms of a modern lens but the camera itself STILL WORKED. After inspection I put the telephoto lens on the camera and took hundreds of photos that appeared perfect. Hal had wisely gotten all possible warranties, guarantees and even a promise that if it plunged to the bottom of the ocean if he retrieved it and turned it in we'd be a-okay.

So we did. We traveled up to the mainland and tried to turn in the busted lens but they wouldn't take it without the camera, being a packaged deal and all. Thinking it might not be a bad idea to have it checked out even though it appeared to be working fine, I did it. I turned it in. 6 weeks, two phone calls and one personal visit later, I received a phone call. They decided to Junk Out my beloved camera. This meant that all I had to do was bop into the store and pick up a new one. Sounds great except that the D40x is now a retired model.

That left me with either the D40 (same body, 6 megapixels vs. 10, everything else basically the same) or the D60 (10 megapixel replacement for the D40x so basically the same again, but with a slower shutter speed and several hundred dollars more) to choose from.

I went with the D40 and chose the same lenses I had previously (Nikkor 18-55mm and the Nikkor 55-200mm VR) and had a bit of spare change left for an external flash and a fun little tripod.

Exhibited Here

My new camera and my new haircut.

Oh, yes. I also donated 10 inches to Beautiful Lengths this week.

Self-Portraits are so difficult

April's Shower of Photos
How to Get an A in Hal's Magical Mystery Musical Course
July 2, 2008, 8:19 am

Be overheard remarking to fellow teen while listening to
Hilary Duff singing the Siamese Cat song:

1: "The opening sequence totally sounds like the Beatles after their return from India."
2: "Who is that?" (that referring to Hilary Duff)

That Liturgical Planner I've Mentioned Once or Twice
June 27, 2008, 10:57 am

Having mentioned my personal summer project of Planning Liturgically a few times, I thought I'd go ahead and share!
Isn't that what blogs are for? :)

First step of any project of mine to ensure it being used is to make it attractive. Pretty sailboat picture that makes me smile and want to drop docklines counts in this case. It will also hopefully remind me as I plan that I live on a sailboat so Keep It Simple Sweetie!

Open up the binder and the divider page for June is front and center. I've decorated each of the months with appropriate and pretty pictures that look like that season would a thousand or so miles north of here. Because, honestly? there would be very little change to differentiate each month here otherwise.

Those divider pages are the coolest things I've seen in a very long time, so simple and yet so useful!

The page behind each monthly divider page is a simple plain jane piece of paper where I scrawl pertinent feast days and the monthly dedication. Last year I used a forever calendar but that fell apart when Easter was so early this year that it bumped alot of Holy Days around. A second problem for me with a calendar is that I start thinking in a grid-like manner, keeping it open and the ideas flowing is more important to me at this stage. The calendar comes into play much later in the planning now.

Next up, in chronological order, is the info I've gathered for each day. It might be a recipe as in this example for Saint Martha's Feast Day with additional notes on post-its or...

a simple craft as in this example for Saints Peter and Paul this Sunday. The beauty of the binder/divider system is that as I find info I can quickly add it in rather like Dawn's File System but smaller and not so prone to being dumped out if we heel over.

Sprinkled throughout this section are more of my simple plain jane pages with more detailed notes scrawled upon them and additional recipes that didn't get ripped from a magazine like these two examples from St. John the Baptist's a few days ago and Sts. Peter and Paul coming up on Sunday.

This system is working marvelously so far but certain time periods simply won't fit into the one-inch binders I had around the boat. Like Advent/Christmas. That definitely gets its own personal one-inch binder!

Which is filling up nicely, don't you think? I love pondering the holidays when the heat index is 180 outside. Gives me a nice chilly feeling!

Well, I hope this was at least as clear as mud! Have a wonderful Friday and I'll leave you with a little poem since it is Poetry Friday out in the blog-o-sphere.

"There is no season such delight can bring,
As summer, autumn, winter and the spring
~ William Browne, 1630, Variety

Our Faith

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S/V Mari Hal-O-Jen
Who: Capt. Hal, Jennifer, and our daughter Marianna, a great photographer!
Port: Boca Chica
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