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Sunday, October 31, 2010

Garden Shroomz

in your garden?

These whimsical ceramic mushrooms (known as shroomz) charmed visitors at Valley Grande's Art in the Park yesterday. They grew by the hands of Gary and Becky Blaylock, owners of Earthquake Pottery. 

See more shadows - light, dark and in between over at Shadow Shot Sunday. 

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Spiders in the Sky?

Spiders in the sky?
These giant metal spidery looking things were on display at the Central Alabama Fair last week, and they're brand-new hay tools (hay rakes) manufactured by our local Bush Hog company.
Bush Hog was founded in Selma by Selma people some 60 years ago, and if you've ever heard of  "bush hogging" a pasture, that expression came from here! The Bush Hog rotary cutter transformed clearing a pasture or cornfield from primitive methods to modern. No more hoeing those corn stalks for days on end! 

Take a trip around the world to see more skies,
sans spiders, at Skywatch Friday.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Shadow Shot Sunday (It Can Start Raining Now!)

Okay, it can start raining now!

Cows are wading out to the middle of ponds to drink water.
They can get stuck doing that. 

No, this long, dry spell isn't nearly as bad 
as the record droughts 
of 2000 and 2007, but it still hurts!

And to think that not so long ago,
we were cryin' in the rain 
during the wettest year of the decade!

I believe it's time for Gov. Riley to issue another
"Pray for Rain" proclamation. 
Sure helped last time.    

(Posted for Shadow Shot Sunday)

Monday, October 4, 2010

Osage Orange Forest

Back before barbed wire was invented in the 1880s, osage orange trees provided menacing fences for livestock. The sharp thorns and extremely hard wood made escape from a pasture practically impossible. The wood is still used for sturdy fenceposts, and the trees give shade to cattle in Alabama's Black Belt.  However, the saplings sprout as prickly bushes that can puncture even the tough treads of  pickup truck and tractor tires!

Come and Get Your Cozy Dawgs!

The Neverland Ferris Wheel at the Central Alabama Fair (2009)
 Don’t you just love a local fair?

Ours opens tonight, and how I’d love to go back to the early ‘90s when my boys were small and the sights and sounds of roller coasters and country music revved their bodies like little engines that could. 

The two in the back are mine, circa 1993?
It was at Lions Fair Park where my kids timidly tried their first Midway rides, then worked up the courage to get scrambled, swung around and turned upside down.

 It was just steps from the old armory exhibit hall where they ate their first Cozy Dawgs.  

“Cozy Dawg! Cozy Dawg! Come and get your Cozy Dawg!” 

That’s the Civitan Club’s marketing spiel for “Please buy one of our corndogs!”

And boy do they market! They have a microphone that blasts your name through the cool night air. 


How could we say no?

That’s another thing about local fairs. Practically everybody knows everybody else. I love to browse the exhibits where I can see paintings, photographs, crafts and cooking created by folks I know.

Sweet Potato Cake
One year, I finally spent the weekend cooking and entered a few baked goods of my own. My mother-in-law’s roll recipe and sweet potato cake won ribbons. So the next year, I persuaded my father-in-law to let me enter some of his bread-and-butter pickles, plum and scuppernong jelly and pear preserves.  

Ouch! He won nothing, nada, nary a thing! Such is the competition!

On to entertainment!

Back in my days as a newspaper reporter, the fair was the big news of the week. We had it highlighted from Monday through Saturday with news staffers scheduled for almost every event. One year, I covered entertainment and got to interview Ava Barber. Remember her?  She was the country singer on The Lawrence Welk Show. She looked so different from her television persona where I thought she appeared much older than her years. At the fair, she wore her hair in a younger, more modern style, had on jeans and sang a few Conway Twitty songs.  

The Big, Blue Chair
Another great thing about the fair is my big, blue chair!

Yes, I won the chair at the fair!

The girl who hates ‘rithmetic and most especially problems dealing with estimation, estimated the number of matches in a big, glass jug and came closest to the correct amount.

I'm thinkin' those Cozy Dawgs must have worked miracles in my brain!

What are your favorite things about a fair?