Welcome to my blog!

I used to blog here mostly using local photos about my neighborhood or Washington DC or other places I visited. But I took a break from the blog for a few months and then found myself posting about crafts and sewing projects I have done or are doing. These involve fabric recycling or re-use and refashioning of clothes, or other frugalities. I've left up the previous blogs and may occasionally revert to those topics again. May your days be blessed with miracles, surprises and creativity too!

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Religion and National Liberty

The Transfiguration
Moses & 10 Commandments
Self Portrait/Scoffer at the Crucifixion
I was in Philadelphia recently and stumbled into some Marc Chagall paintings at the National Liberty Museum. It was quite a surprise to see them so of course I had to snap away with the magic of a cell phone camera as -- natch -- I'd forgotten my regular old digital camera again.  There's interesting and text-heavy images and photographs in this private museum focusing on various heroes who have upheld and fought for liberty, freedom or otherwise resisted tyranny. The exhibit on the top floor of the museum is called "Voyage to Liberty through Faith Gallery" and seems to focus on the role of religion and liberty and includes text about basic religious precepts of several world religions except for Christianity which is only indirectly included. The Ten Commandments, the Transfiguration and a painting of the Crucifixion are no longer everyday images for many. Chagall's painting style is very recognizable here and I found them just delightful, don't you too? 


Monday, September 24, 2012

Blue Sky and Daily Bread

Gutted Wonder Bread building
Wild clematis icing the rose of sharon
When I saw the sky through the open roof of the old Wonder Bread building at 641 S Street NW, I just knew I had to snap it as after the building is developed there will be no chance to do that again! It's a big building -- about 98,000 square feet -- that will become stores and offices. I actually looked up the history recently, to find out that the Wonder Bread Factory opened in the early 1900s as Dorsh's White Cross Bakery. Then it was bought by Continental Baking Company in 1936 and used  as a factory for Wonder Bread and Hostess products (Twinkies perhaps!) until they relocated to a larger plant in Philadelphia, closing the DC factory in 1988. When I first moved to BloomingdaleDC I do recall smelling the baking aroma as far away as North Capitol street sometimes and hearing that they gave away "stale" or "overrun" baked goods to anyone who got there at the right time.  Then again, the sky has looked wonderful lately almost every day so I found myself snapping my usual flowers and plants and things, all with the sky in them.   How wonderful is our daily bread of blue sky!



Thursday, September 20, 2012

Killing Our Trees Softly

Hoard leaning on tree
Sticky duct tape
Trash bag tied to tree
I don't know why it is that I now see how badly many are treating the trees locally but this abuse must stop.  Hardly a block away somebody has put several mattresses leaning against the tree with a big scraping on the bark as "they" had clearly adjusted the leaning angle against the tree to suit the mattress. When I looked again today, not only were there mattresses but also a door and some old furniture (!) all piled up as an eyesore leaning against what has been a pretty young and healthy tree on the sidewalk planted and paid for by taxpayers.  The recent rains have soaked the mattress and you just know it's getting moldy and nasty and will transport all kinds of stuff to the tree, bringing in infestations that will cause the tree to die sooner than it should.  Equally annoying to see are taped up notices or garbage bags attached to trees.  Clearly someone thinks a garbage bag on the street is helpful. However, what they are missing is that the tape is damaging the tree bark and providing a way for bacteria and bugs to get into the tree, and yes, you guessed it, causing the tree to die sooner than it should. Last summer I saw bikes chained to trees, and which are even more damaging.  Since the bicyclist generally returns to the bike soon, I taped notices onto the bikes asking the rider to not do this again.  In one case, when I verbally asked someone not to do this, the owner of the house beside the tree yelled at me that her tenant could tie her bike up wherever she felt like. I repeated loudly again that chaining bikes to trees is bad for the tree but she refused to listen.  I'm mystified by this disregard for trees.  Do people just see trees as objects, as dead and unreactive to the environment? Do they think trees are immortal and can take the abuse? Do they think trees should support our human activities even if the activity (throwing out junk, tying things to the tree) hurts the tree? Are these tree-abusers too lazy to call the city to take away the trash or junk? Are there any laws available to help this situation here in DC? What can be done?