Saturday, December 31, 2016

Be Kind Always

Pretty good New Year's resolution, don't you think?

Happy New Year.

Friday, December 30, 2016


This is from a few days ago.  Most snow in greater Hartford melted, but it began snowing and raining yesterday. Three to six inches of new snow were predicted by this morning,
but you know how unpredictable predictions are.

The weather might affect my flight back to Naples today.

Thursday, December 29, 2016

Around Town

A new hotel -- the Delamar -- is going up across the street from Blue Back Square.
Still wrapped for the holidays, but they forgot the ribbons and bows.

Asian immigrants are flooding into the southeastern part of West Hartford.  Vietnamese, Cambodian, Thai, Chinese, Japanese, Indian, Nepalese, everyone.  Asian groceries and restaurants
are popping up everywhere.

Most of South Main Street in West Hartford Center is one story high.  To capitalize on the center's popularity, a developer added three stories of condos above the retail space.

The former owner of this house was the general manager of the Hartford Whalers, a National Hockey League team that left town 20 years ago.  He probably left the hockey rink boards
for the new owners.

A Tudor-style house is always neat and well-dressed for the holidays.

Let's have a round of applause for utility workers, who get called out for hard physical labor at all hours and in all weather.  These guys were repairing a water main break
at 9:30 pm in below freezing temperatures.

Wednesday, December 28, 2016

The Girls Were Built to Run

At this time of year, the Elizabeth Park rose garden is deserted, so I can let the girls run off leash.

They are becoming accustomed to the cold.  It never got below 20 degrees Fahrenheit,
and in that temperature range, they never needed their jackets.

Tuesday, December 27, 2016


The dogs stayed here while Susie, Wessel and Willa went to Rhode Island to visit friends.

Monday, December 26, 2016

New Britain Museum of American Art

I have shown the inside of the museum many times before.  Here is part of the outside.
It is across the street from yesterday's house.

Decorated trees picked up something from the art in the galleries in which they were placed.

This one picked up on the snow scene.

Easy to see why this bright red tree was in a room devoted to Thomas Hart Benson.  
Love the hat topping the tree.

This one picked up the 19th century style and the woman's fan.

And, this one echoed the Chihuly chandelier in the stairwell.

Sunday, December 25, 2016

The Christmas House

For nearly 40 years, a New Britain woman took three to four months decorating her house for Christmas.  She admitted visitors, asking them to donate non-perishable food items for a shelter.  

She died this summer at 90 years old.  But, her family continued the tradition for this one last year.

Well done, Mrs. Giancola.  Rest in peace.
And well done, family.

Merry Christmas, everyone.

Saturday, December 24, 2016

It Has Only Been a Month

But it seems that Willa is two years more mature and knows oodles more words and combinations.
AND, she now has a fetish for shoes and handbags. 

There is NOTHING more exciting than waiting for Mama to come home.

She went to a Christmas party in the dress her mother wore at the same age!

Friday, December 23, 2016

A Christmas Tradition

Last year I wrote about the Christmas party I attend every year.  It was last night.  Great fun.  This year I noticed that there might have been as many from our kids' generation as from mine.
It is one passing of the baton that I am happy to observe.  The younger ones are
better singers than I am, that is for sure. 

(I put the photo through a watercolor effect to preserve the attendees' privacy.)

Thursday, December 22, 2016

People on the Street

Anna smiled as she walked out of the federal courthouse.  She is Jamaican and had just been sworn in as a U.S. citizen.  Anna lives in Bridgeport and is a dental hygienist.  Congratulations, Anna!

Jesse saw my camera and wanted me to take his picture.  Here it is.  Jesse was homeless but he says he is pulling his life together.  He also wanted a dollar for the bus.  I gave it to him.

Jeff was OK with me taking a picture, but his body language said I had one shot and better not dawdle.  As he hustled away, he told me over his shoulder that he is a lawyer.

Matt works in a men's clothing store.  I bought my son a tie and scarf from him.  
Don't worry.  My son doesn't read this blog, so he will still be surprised.

Michele with one L is a marketing consultant.  She helps small businesses devise and implement social media programs to increase their revenues.  I wish I picked a better background.
With her flowing black hair, dark and geometric brick was a mistake.

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Hail, hail, the gang's all here !!

Lola and Sequoia had to stay behind on Susie's and Wessel's Johannesburg farm when they emigrated to the States in October.  But, last week the two weimaraners arrived in Connecticut.
(Thanks for the photo, Susie.)

It is quite a jolt for short-haired dogs to go from a hot African summer to the bone-chilling cold
and snow of a New England winter.  But, the girls are ready for it.

Back to Connecticut through year-end.  I will be looking for my own warm jacket.

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Night Lights at the Garden

Night Lights in the Garden is a favorite holiday season event at the Naples Botanical Garden.
This year, 30 large metal origami sculptures by Kevin and Jennifer Box were featured.

A Japanese legend says that anyone who folds a thousand origami cranes will have eternal good luck.
This tower with a thousand cranes is in a pond filled with lily pads.

This tree was illuminated by floodlights that changed colors.  It was hung with lights 
that looked like fireworks falling to earth.

A huge origami egret.

A very cool lighted bed of bromeliads at the base of a tree.

A duo performed on a stage in the middle of a boardwalk.

Monday, December 19, 2016

More From the Naples Artcrafters Show

Todd enjoys a quiet moment.

Soraya makes elaborate Venetian-style masks.

After retiring from a big national accounting firm, Clark began indulging his interest in photography.

Jennie describes herself as a bit of a hippie.  If you don't want to buy her pottery,
how about some counseling about alternative medicine therapies?

Thom is a classically trained artist who now has a primitive style that calls stained glass to mind.

Sunday, December 18, 2016

Naples Artcrafters

 A show sponsored by the Naples Artcrafters was held in Cambier Park last weekend.

I bought a landscape from Darlene Pearse five years ago.  She now paints abstracts.  Big change.

Two Ecuadorean painters, one of whom paints fantasy scenes and the other abstracts.

 A potter from Ohio, Catherine's forms are traditional but her glazes are special.

Saturday, December 17, 2016

A Christmas Rock Band

I wonder if this is how Janis Joplin started.  She is going to be a star some day.

A young group entertained the crowd at the Village Shops on Venetian Bay.
Three guitars, a drummer and the lead singer.

They performed a set of maybe five classic rock favorites, including Stones and Beatles, and finished with a Christmas song.  The crowd tapped their feet, swayed with the music and sang along.

Behind them, the Humane Society showed some of the dogs they wanted people to adopt.

Friday, December 16, 2016

Thursday, December 15, 2016


I went to a holiday party recently.  For decades the hosts have collected cloth ornaments depicting either famous historic figures or fictional figures.  I stood at the tree along with 
several other guests, trying to figure out who the ornaments were.

W. C. Fields, Harry Truman and Abraham Lincoln are here.  I never found Ruth Bader Ginsburg.
The rest of the ornaments are for you to identify.