Sunday, December 30, 2007

Trains, Trains Everywhere

There was an ad in our free paper to go see a train display. The ad said the display was 28' x 32'. Now most women, myself included, cannot visualize how big or small this is. We must actually see it to understand the size. So camera in hand, down I went. The display was on the second floor of the owners garage.

This is the first thing I saw on the front of the garage.

This was on the wall going up the steps. A train calendar from 1944.

When I got upstairs I just stood there for awhile trying to take it all in. There were trains, villages, tunnels and bridges all around. The gentleman who had set this all up was there. He just sat there watching people with a grin on his face. If you had a question, he would answer, but wouldn't explain any futher then the question asked. I took close to 50 pictures of this room yesterday, and here are seven of them. Hopefully you will enjoy them as much as I did.

Monday, December 24, 2007

Seasons Greetings

Wishing everyone a very Merry Christmas. Lisa

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Bird Indentification Help Please

Earlier this week I went to the Cape May County Zoo. This is the website if anyone is interested, I went into the aviary with the full knowledge that I could be shit upon yet again. When I went in I was greeted by this guy.

What a character. He thought he could dance like Michael Jackson, but he was really as talented as Kenny Main (I hope I spelled his name right), when he was on Dancing with the Stars. If I got to close to his cage, he would hurry over, hissing the whole time. I have never heard a bird hiss before, how funny was this. I went over to another bird and he was causing such a fuss I turned around. When I did this is what he did.

I stayed there for about 15 minutes with this guy laughing. I am sure there are security cameras in there and I am positive that whoever was watching was saying "look at this whack job." The following pictures were taken inside the aviary. If anyone knows what the names of these birds are, I would greatly appreciate it if you could tell me. I have these pictures on my flickr site and I would like to identify them better then some type or some breed of duck, swan, etc. Thank you.

Oh - and by the way, I made it out unscathed.

This little one was funny too. There wasn't to many visitor's at the zoo this day and when this one saw me, he just started honking and waddling around the enclosure.

He had beautiful blue eyes and I managed to get this picture.

I was taking a picture of the bobcat when one of the zoo keepers was walking by. He told me that the tiger had just been fed and that I could probably get some good pictures. I asked him where in the enclosure the tiger was? He said you can't miss him. Well guess what - I couldn't find him. I stood there for a while trying to find this 400-500 pound tiger. That when standing on its hind legs is over nine feet tall. Didn't I feel like a dope. Well the tiger finally moved. He was in the corner where a lot of leaves had accumulated and there are bushes on the outside of the enclosure. He just blended right in. I didn't feel like to much of a dope anymore. Unfortunately where he was, I wasn't able to get many good pictures of him. I decided to come back later. When I did, there was this guy there. He was saying "Ah aren't you a pretty boy Rocky" and so on. He says to me that he comes everyday to see Rocky and that Rocky loves him. OH OKAY. Now Rocky is laying there looking at this guy growling and bearing his teeth.
I'm thinking "buddy I don't think Rocky loves you. I think he is still hungry."
This picture was in our local newspaper of Rocky and what he thinks of the snow.

So now I'm thinking that Rocky may love the snow more. Or I could be wrong.
Well, it is time for me to stop writing and do something around the house. Until next time, I hope everyone has had a wonderful weekend.

Saturday, December 15, 2007

What I learned this week...

Get your money out of the ATM - quickly. Not a good sign when your toilet gurgles while taking a shower. What happens to trees when saltwater flood their area. Allowing your cat on you computer desk.

I went to the ATM early Thursday morning before the bank had opened. Thursday is the day when Shoppe's come out. Shoppe's are a free weekly paper with people trying to sell...well their junk. I started my transaction and then started to get those plastic wrap ties off the Shoppe's. Next thing I know the ATM is making a lot of noise. I turn around to get my money and it's gone, the receipt of the transaction is there, but no money. I was like "I think the machine sucked my money back inside, but still debited my account." At lunch, I went to the bank and asked them if you waited to long to take your money out, will the machine suck it back in? Nancy said it has been known to happen. She checked my account and sure enough it showed the transaction. I asked her how I get my money back? I know I have to wait until the ATM is settled to prove that it is $60.00 over. She consulted with the bank manager and she said "Well today is Thursday and I settle the ATM on Thursday's." I said I picked a good day to be stupid. They called me later to tell me that the ATM was indeed $60.00 richer than me and that I needed to go back to the bank and sign a piece of paper before they could credit my account. I went up yesterday. Nancy started filling out the paperwork and she got the part about how it happened. She wrote "the customer" and stopped. I filled in the rest for her "because the customer is stupid and should have grab the money right away instead of fighting with plastic ties for a Shoppe." She told me that the same thing happened to another customer the same day. That he was doing something with his checkbook and didn't get his money fast enough. I didn't say anything, but I think Nancy was trying to make me feel better. However, she didn't have to bother because quite honestly I found the whole situation amusing and a learning experience. The problem is I am out $60. bucks and I don't know when they will credit my account. LESSON LEARNED.

Yesterday morning I am taking my shower and the toilet starts to gurgle. THIS CAN'T BE GOOD. After the shower I looked in the toilet and most of the water is gone. I figured I had a clog and I would fix it by doing a load of wash and that would push the clog out. Not a very good idea. I called a plumber friend of mine and he said it sounds like I have a clog. WELL DUH. He said he didn't have they machine to clear the clog and gave me the name of a guy he uses. He said that this guy doesn't have the best personality in the world, so be prepared. Fine by me, I find people like this a challenge. I called and left a message. About 45 minutes later he calls back. I told him what was going on and he said "Yup. You have a clog. I will be there this afternoon." I asked if he meant after noon. He said "that is afternoon isn't." Well okay then. I asked him if I could flush the toilet? He said "I don't know where the clog is and what the clog is so you could take the chance and flush, but this may not be a good idea." Then he asked me if this was my house? I said yes. He asked if payment was going to be a problem? I said payment would not be a problem. I mean really I am already in the hole for $60. bucks right. And I said to him "just like a doctor making sure you get paid". I don't think he found this amusing. I told him I would see him when he got here. I did take the chance and flushed the toilet, but of course I pushed the envelope one to many times. He finally got here at 2:30. Was I SO happy to see him. He got his machine out and said I need to see your bathroom. He turned on the shower, sink, flush the toilet and started the washer. I asked him if he was out of his mind? He just smiled. Payback I think, but if he made a mess HE WOULD BE CLEANING IT UP. Lucky for him, no mess was made. As per my norm the questions started. He said I could asked as many questions as I like, but they would cost $5.00 a piece. Good thing this was pay week. I went in the house to check on things and the water in my washer and tub were rusty colored. I came out asked him why and he said "Miss, I just clear the clogs. That sounds like a question for your plumber." Some help he was. Turned out to be nothing, the water cleared right up. He got his flashlight out and looked down the pipe. He looked at me with a smirk on his face and asked if I wanted to look? I said yes. I asked him if the flowing water meant he cleared the clog. "Yup" he said. I said he was a very good man. As it turned out, I found this man to be very pleasant and we chatted for 20 minutes after he was done. I don't know what my friend was talking about. LESSON LEARNED.

There is a section on Route 47 with a lot of dead trees.

I never knew why this this was. I was talking to an old timer. I can call him an old timer because he will say that about himself too. He told me that this area was beautifully wooded at one time and that this had been freshwater wetlands. He said that a really bad storm came through with extremely high tides and flooded this area. Of course trees don't like saltwater and they all died and this area is now saltwater wetlands. It is sad that all the trees died, but it truly is a beautiful site to see. LESSON LEARNED.

A couple of weeks ago, while I was on the computer, my cat was pesting to get up on my lap. She wasn't happy with my lap. She gets on my desk and looks out the window. Okay - fine, cats love looking out windows. Then she proceeds to lay down. Me being a softy when it comes to my baby (as previously posted) have to get a blanket for her to be more comfortable. BIG MISTAKE.

She has now taken over the desk. LESSON LEARNED, BUT NOT RESOLVED.
Well, again I have gabbed enough for one post. I hope that everyone learns something new everyday and make it a fun, amusing experience.

Sunday, December 9, 2007

This Week in Review

Saturday, 12-1-07: I went to a sheep farm for a craft show. It was the first time I had ever been there. I have to say there weren't too may sheep for a sheep farm. However, it was a good time. There weren't too many crafters, but there was a lady there weaving. This was the first time I had ever seen weaving. I must have stayed there for 45 minutes watching and asking questions. God Bless her soul, she was very patient. You see, when I am curious about something, I tend to ask questions, lots and lots of questions. After I walked around a bit longer I decided it was time to go. I took this road that I had never driven before. After about 15 minutes, I came across a little wooden bridge. I stopped and got these pictures.

This was a beautiful road. All woods and very few houses. Very peaceful. Then I went and took this picture of my favorite lake.

I stopped at the Belleplain Lake. I love this lake also. While taking pictures of the lake, a bird shit on me. They say that this is supposed to be good luck. Whoever started this must not have been shit upon. After I got in the car I noticed that I was shit on twice. HOW RUDE. Well I should have double luck right. Well I am still waiting, but I guess you could say that I have my health, my camera, my baby and the two kittens, very good friends and a roof over my head. What more luck do I need. After I cleaned myself up, I came across these two along the side of the road.

Now this is a very busy road and I was a little concerned about these two. Well, they didn't seem to care to much, so I went on my way.
Monday, 12-3-07: Today started out as a sunny, warm and beautiful. The weather people said that it was going to get very windy and the temperatures were supposed to drop through the day. Well lo and behold they were right. As people would come into the office, I was commenting on how windy it had gotten. They were saying you should see the (Delaware) Bay. Well I was like a kid on Christmas Eve waiting for quitting time so I could get my camera and go to the bay. I only got out of the car once. That was enough. No hair spray made could hold up to that wind. While I was taking pictures from the safety of my car, I saw this guy.
He was walking his dog on the beach. Unfortunately I didn't get a picture of the dog, but how she managed to stay on the ground is a mystery. She was about six pounds maybe six and a quarter with her sweater.

After he got back in his truck, he got out with his camera. Being noisy I looked to see what he was taking pictures of. And this is it. Very beautiful sunset.

Wednesday, 12-5-07: The sad news of the day was the shooting at the Nebraska mall. Eight innocent people dead. I will admit I shed tears over this. I pondered over this sad event for awhile. It is human nature to blame someone, so I blame the new media. Whenever something like this happens, they sensationalize it day after day. Examples: the Nebraska mall, Columbine, the Amish School house and Virgina Tech shootings. We do not need to hear or see all of this. In my opinion when someone mentally unstable sees all of the television exposure, and they do these horrific acts, it is like they are saying, "Now you know who I am". I'm sorry if you are that depressed that you must end your life. End your life, not the lives of innocent people. Cliff had wrote about this in his blog. I didn't realize how close to this mall he was and that he shopped there. Thankfully he and his family weren't there this day.
Maybe if the news had more happy and caring clips the evils of the world would slowly subside.
On a happier note we had our first snowfall of the season which is very unusual for this time of the year. I don't ever remember getting snow in December and before Christmas. Again I was like a kid on Christmas Eve which is very unusual for me because I really don't like the white stuff. I couldn't wait to get home and grab the camera. Here are a couple pictures of our first snow fall.

Later that night with hot chocolate in hand I rode around looking at the Christmas lights.
It is not a very good picture, but this is one of the houses I took a picture of. I know it may look like the Griswold's house, but it really isn't.

This is the sunrise of the day after our first snow.

This is just a small rant. Did everyone hear that Santa is not allowed to say Ho-Ho-Ho anymore because it may offend some people. Now he has to say Ha-Ha-Ha- or He-He-He whatever it is. Can you imagine how many little kids are going to be upset because they will think that Santa is laughing at them. This is just unbelievably stupid if you ask me.

Well again I have rambled on enough for one post. Until next time take care of yourselves and enjoy the sights and sound around you.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Happy and Sad

I am happy because I have been on vacation since the Thursday before Thanksgiving and sad because today is the last day and I have I go back to work tomorrow. I work for local governamnet and have for the past 13 years. It has been nice until recently. The office politics is getting to an unbearable level. I am not political at all and will never be. To me it is like selling your soul to the devil. The whispering and back stabbing is just some of the everday norms now in the office. Why do I stay? you may ask. Well here are some of the reasons - I live alone, I need the money, health benefits and pension. Here is Cape May County, jobs that offer the above are hard to come by. Well enough about that. I am sure I will have some rants in the future on this topic.

My friend called yesterday and asked if I wanted to go the the Cape May Mall (Washington Street Mall). Of course I said yes. This is what the Mall looked like before renovations.

I had seen a picture in the newspaper of the renovation, but it didn't prepare me for what I saw.

The following link is history on the mall and there is also a place to click that shows more pictures of the renovations.

This was a beautiful, quaint outdoor mall. The center had lovely shade trees and benches. At Christmas, all the trees were lit. It was so sad to see 30 year old trees taken out. They say that after it is done, it will be beautiful. I hope they are right.

As per the norm when I go on vacation it is guaranteed to rain. Which it did several days, it also was cloudy, damp, windy, sunny and warm. So basically I covered all the elments except the nasty white stuff, which I am so-so happy.

I did manage to get a couple fairly good pictures of the fall colors.

These are the trees outside of Township Hall.
This is Belleplain.

Anyone who knows me or read my profile knows my first love is animals.

Here is Tiger basking in the sun with not a care in the world.

There is a road in Middle Township that I always take. One because it is beautiful and two because there are horses. I took carrots and camera and here are some of the pictures.

I've named this one "Give the carrot and I won't hurt you"

This is "Damn Camera"

This is "Pretty".

Well, it is time to go, enjoy my last day of freedom, so to speak. OH and by the way, I hope everyone enjoyed their Thanksgiving.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Thanksgiving Funny

I received this in an e-mail. I got a chuckle out of it so I thought I would share.

A game warden was driving down the road when he came upon a young boy carrying a wild turkey under his arm.

He stopped and asked the boy, "Where did you get that turkey?"

The boy replied, "What turkey?"

The game warden said, "That turkey you're carrying under your arm."

The boy looks down and said, "Well, lookee here, a turkey done roosted under my arm!"

The game warden said, "Now look, you know turkey season is closed, so whatever you do to that turkey, I'm going to do to you. If you break his leg, I'm gonna break your leg. If you break his wind, I'll break your arm. Whatever you do to him, I'll do to you. So, what are you gonna do with him?"

The little boy said, "I guess I'll just kiss his ass and let him go!"

May your stuffing be tasty
May your turkey plump,
May your potatoes and gravy
Have never a lump.
May your yams be delicious
And your pies take the prize,
And may your Thanksgiving dinner
Stay off of your thighs!

Happy Thanksgiving

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Pumpkin Cake

With Thanksgiving several days away I thought that maybe there would be some who don't eat pie. Don't get me wrong, I enjoy a good slice of pumpkin pie, but I love a good cake. I wanted to share this recipe with you. My mom came across this recipe in the newspaper some thirty years ago and I have been making it ever since. As soon as the weather gets cooler, out comes the recipe and soon the spicy aroma is mouthwatering. This cake can be made ahead and frozen.

4 eggs
2-2 1/2 cups sugar
Cream. When creamed add
1 cup oil
1 cup pumpkin (pumpkin pie mix by Libby's)
3 cups flour
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1 cup water
2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. salt
2 tsp. cinnamon (I love cinnamon, so I always add a little extra)
Mix well
Bake in a greased tube pan for 1 hour to 1 hour 15 minutes in a 350-375 degree oven (depends on your oven. I baked mine 350 degrees for 1 hour 5 minutes)
Test by inserting toothpick until there is a little cake on the toothpick (don't overbake). Let cool on wire rack 10 minutes. Remove cake from pan and completely cool.

I generally make two cakes because I don't want to waste the pumpkin pie mix. I will cut the cakes in half, freeze all but one and put the other one in the refrigerator. I think it tastes better cold with a cold glass of mix.

I hope that you enjoy this cake as much as I do.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Simple Pleasures

Yesterday I decided I wanted to go out and enjoy some of the simple pleasures of Cape May County. On my way to the supermarket I came across this -

This is along Fulling Mill Road going toward Rio Grande. I just love all the colors of fall. And it felt like a fall day. The wind was blowing and it was very chilly.

After I got home and put everything away. I decided it was time to venture down to Cape May Point. As I was driving down Sunset Blvd. I decided to go to the end and see what was happening in the Bay and the Sunken Ship. When I got out of the car I was nearly blown away by the wind. However, it was worth it.

This is also known as the concrete ship by the locals. Sadly, there isn't much left. With numb hands, I went to Cape May Point Park and took a walk along the path.

Almost at the end of the path, I saw this

I went up on a pathway to the ocean and was surprised how calm the ocean was. I looked up and captured this

All in all it was a very good day. It did my heart good to go out and enjoy the simple pleasures of life.