Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Tulip's in Bloom at the Brooklyn Botanic Garden

The tulips were clearly in their heyday.  

Tomorrow you'll see the weirder side of the festival.

Monday, April 29, 2013

Genki Daiko Children's Taiko

Still at the Sakura Matsui Festival at the Brooklyn Botanic Garden.  This performing group from Brooklyn is the next generation of taiko drummers.  Taiko means drums in Japanese.
 Before the performance, you can see I'm pretty far back.

To get a sense of the sound of the drums and gongs you can click here.  To skip the kids coming on stage you can fast forward to 5:15 minutes into clip.

Sunday, April 28, 2013

Sakura Matsuri

Sakura Matsuri means cherry blossom in Japanese.  Each year the Brooklyn Botanic Garden holds the Sakura Matsuri Festival in conjunction (more or less) with the blossoming of the Cherry Blossom trees. Today was the most beautiful day here in the Northeast so far and the festival did not disappoint.  Over the next few days I'll be posting photos from the festival.

I know that I posted Cherry Blossoms from Wooster Square in New Haven so here are just a few more from Brooklyn.  The Festival in Brooklyn is much larger with its own cultural quirks so there will be more varied photos.

Saturday, April 27, 2013

When Trees Bloom

It seems that in the last week the trees that blossom have come out from their long winter's nap.  This was just a simple view out of one of the parsonage windows.  The colors struck me with the early morning light.  Off to the Brooklyn Botanic Garden for their Sakura Matsuri Cherry Blossom Festival today.  Will share photos in the next few days.

Friday, April 26, 2013

Friday at the Feeder

A Red bellied Woodpecker
They LOVE the suet.
Here are two Goldfinches and another Woodpecker.  This one is a Hairy Woodpecker.  You can just barely see a red patch on the back of his head.

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Stone-Otis House

Off of the Northeast side of the Green in Orange sits the Stone-Otis House.  This Greek revival style home was built by Sarah and Dennis Stone in 1830 and sold to Phebe and Charles Otis in 1887.  It was held by that family until 1965 when then sold it to the Town of Orange.  I haven't been inside yet because the season hasn't opened but I'll be back.  There is also an herb garden in the back which might just about now be starting to put out some green.

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

ORANGE Congregational Church

Just a little fun for today.
Photo taken on my Iphone and doctored up in Pixlr.

Tuesday, April 23, 2013


Orange is the home of PEZ!!!
Pez candy was invented in 1927 in Vienna, Austria as a breath mint by Eduard Haas III.  It was the candy of my youth and the dispensers are now quite collectible.
At the Pez factory you can take tours and see how Pez is made but in the information center they have on display memorabilia and Pez collectibles.

My hometown, St. Louis Cardinals Pez dispenser!  Go Cards.

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Orange Town Seal

I'm still trying to get the background on this new town seal, new as of the 1990's.  It features a farmer and an oxen plow and is shown on almost all flags and town signs.

Saturday, April 20, 2013

Cherry Blossom Fever

The Wooster Square neighborhood of New Haven each year awaits the blooming of the Yoshino cherry blossom trees.  They just popped a day ago and it was well worth the wait.  

Hughes Place, on each side of the street has mature Yoshino's that form a canopy of Cherry Blossoms over the street.
 Lots of Cherry Blossom enthusiasts in Wooster Square.  I miss the 'hood.

Friday, April 19, 2013

Friday at the Feeder


The Beautiful, Stripped Sparrow

by Mary Oliver

in the afternoons,

in the almost empty fields,

i hum the hymns

i used to sing

in church.

they could not tame me,

so they would not keep me,

and how that feels,
the weight of it,

i will not tell

any of you,

not ever.

still, as they promised,

God, once he is in your heart,

is everywhere -

so even here

among the weeds

and the brisk trees.
how long does it take

to hum a hymn? strolling

one or two acres

of the sweetness

of the world,

not counting

a lapse, now and again,

of sheer emptiness.

once a deer

stood quietly at my side.

and sometimes the wind

has touched my cheek

like a spirit.

am i lonely?

the beautiful, striped sparrow,

serenely, on the tallest weed in his kingdom,

also sings without words.

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Josef Albers

Who knew that the artist and educator Josef Albers and his wife Anni are buried in the Orange Cemetery?  The cemetery is just down the street from the parsonage and the church.  

Josef was born in March of 1888 in Germany and was educated and taught at the Bauhaus.  He immigrated to the US in 1933 when the Nazi regime closed down the Bauhaus.  He first arrived and taught in Black Mountain, North Carolina and then was asked to come to the Yale University School of Design.  He and Anni lived in Orange and now are buried here.  He produced some important work that is shown below and wrote a seminal book on color, "Interaction of Art", which happened to be one of my textbooks in college.
 Artwork and photo of Albers downloaded from Google search images.  One more thing the Josef and Anni Albers Foundation is located in Bethany, CT, just a town or two over as the crow flies.

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Back to Collinsville

Across the street from the Antiques Mall, or the former Collins Company that I featuring two days ago, sit the abandoned Powerhouse that was built in 1935 by the Collins Company employees to power the factory and factory housing.

 Inside the powerhouse revealed the large hook.  It was very ominous on this grey day in Collinsville.
In August of 1955 there was a flood of the Farmington River and the Powerhouse was the only structure left standing.  Not sure when it was abandoned.

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Violence is NOT the last word

Success, humanity, life, love does!
My friend's daughter Kari finished the Boston Marathon merely 15 minutes before the devastating blasts.  Ann and Greg have been nearly life long friends, Ann and I were college roommates back in the day.  Prayers for those who lost their life, for those who were injured and for all who gathered in the  spirit of the race.

Monday, April 15, 2013

Road Trip

Collinsville, CT is a section of Canton, CT.  I took a drive with my daughter-in-law to do some antiquing at an antiques mall on the Farmington River.  The mall was in part of the old Collins Company a now defunct axe and machete producer.
 The Collins Company was built in 1826 by Samuel and David Collins and their cousin William Wells.
 At one point in time the company prospered and they built housing for their employees, a bank, a church, an hotel and stores.  The also purchased a powerhouse that I'll show tomorrow.

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Late afternoon in Orange

A cool but sunny day in Orange, the sun is setting casting shadows on the Orange Town Hall.

Saturday, April 13, 2013

And they're off....

Youth and Adults from Orange Congregational Church taking off for Virginia to work at a Habitat for Humanity House.

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Maple View Farm

Last week I showed the four horses hitched together and strolling on Orange Center Road.  They were from Maple View Farm across the Green from the parsonage.  If you cross the street you can get up front and personal with the horses.  They are very used to people and will come over to the fence.
This was taken while there was still snow on the ground.  The horse came right over and Milo wasn't so sure.  I told him it was just a very large dog that smelled differently.  I'll have many more photos of the farm as summer finally takes hold.