Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Happy New Year from Paris!

Tonight is New Year's Eve and I hope to be in the midst of the crowds celebrating with champagne. What a delightful way to welcome in 2009!!!!!

Best wishes to all of my fellow bloggers and blog readers.

A bientot.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Posting from Paris!!!

Merry Christmas from Paris. It is beautiful here and all of the people I have met are lovely. Best wishes to all for a joyous New Year!!!

Monday, December 15, 2008

This wasn't taken in Kissimmee but in Dade City, another old Florida town. My inherited daughter and I drove there awhile ago and walked around the downtown and checked out some of the stores. I spoted this water thingie and thought it made a good subject for a photo. So here it is..

And I leave for Paris today so this will be my last post until I return.. I've just been too busy and tired to write up 20 days of posts before I go.. I have house guests who are going to take care of my house and I've been showing them all the little and not so little quirks in the house so hopefully they won't have too many problems.

Mine have been piling up.. I'm hoping not an omen of things to come. I have a cold.. my suitcase was way too big and too heavy so I bought another one and dug out an old one so I can pack two lighter ones... the raincoat with hood that I bought came down to my shoes and I looked like a cross between not-so-little Red Riding Hood and Cousin It from the Adams Family.. so off I went to find another. I repacked my suitcases and my cat, Shadow, kept climbing into and on them hoping to keep me from leaving him.

Hopefully today will be a better day...

Paris Countdown: I leave this afternoon and I arrive in Paris Tuesday morning ...!!!

Sunday, December 14, 2008

This should be the last of my lamposts. This motif is the live oak which is one of our most common trees here in Central Florida. They grow very large and give us much needed shade.
I have five very large ones on my property that were almost totally denuded of leaves and small branches by Hurrican Charlie but they held up and are well on their way to recovering.

Paris Countdown: 1 Day!!

Saturday, December 13, 2008

This streetlamp displays the typical Florida cattle silhouette. Most of the beef cattle raised in this area are American Brahmam.

The American Brahman - the first beef breed developed in the United States - has played an important part in cattle crossbreeding programs throughout the Americas. Brahman cattle were imported from India into the United States as early as 1854 - gifts from the British government to Louisiana rancher Richard Barrows. By 1926, 266 bulls had been placed on Gulf Coast ranches from Florida to Texas.

As many Seminole elders will remember, it was the Brahman crossing on the Florida native cattle that gave the state's cattle industry its base cows for many of the great cattle herds that call Florida home: Lykes Brothers, A. Duda and Sons, Mormon's, Alico, the Babcock Florida Company, even our own Seminole herds.

These cattle have endured famine, insects, ticks, flies, mosquitoes, and harsh climates and will adapt well to the harsher tropical and sub-tropical environments. They also secrete sebum, an oily substance, from their skin - effective in repelling insects.

The above is from a March 2001 article about the Seminole Tribe's use of the Red Brahmam instead of the more common grey.

Paris Countdown:2 Days!!

Friday, December 12, 2008

Last month I posted one of our city's lamposts that had a cowboy boot on it.. Here is one with cowboy on a bucking horse. It is decorated with a red bow for the holidays. Each block in downtown has a different motif on the streetlamps.. I'll do another one in a few days.

Paris Countdown: 3 Days!! Panic is setting in..

Thursday, December 11, 2008

A sandhill crane in the front yard and my cat, Sassy, in the window fascinated by it. She gets excited by the smaller birds but she's not sure she'd want catch this one.

Paris Countdown:4 Days!!

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Yesterday was watermelon at the Farmer's Market.. This is the entrance to the square downtown where it is held.. They also do music and other activities there. Much of downtown is being renovated and is looking good..

Paris Countdown:5 Days!!!

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Our Farmer's Market is on Thursday and I always love the vendors and their cheerful dispositions and the rows and rows of produce. Last week the watermelons looked good but I resisted the temptation. Too big for one person.. My house sitters will be here on Wednesday so this week I may bring one home.

Paris Countdown:6 Days!!!

Monday, December 8, 2008

This is Jeremy who, along with his family, own Laniers Antique store in Downtown Kissimmee. He sets up every morning by bringing out piles of items to display on the sidewalk. Usually there are some chairs where you will find Jeremy, his Dad, or some of the locals sitting in and discussing current Kissimmee events.

Paris Countdown:7 Days!!!

Sunday, December 7, 2008

The Kissimmee Sculpture Experience

Of all the new Downtown Kissimmee sculptures, I think this one is my favorite.
It is by Carlos J. Diaz of Kissimmee and is called Dream Rider. See the plaque for details and artist's statement.

Paris Countdown:8 Days!!!

Saturday, December 6, 2008

I love this character from Cirque du Soleil's La Nouba show at Downtown Disney. All of the costumes are wonderful but this one is just a delight..and so is the character.

This is a photo taken from a large sign above the doorway to the shop at Cirque du Soleil. I had taken a larger area but there was a metal bar dividing the photo so I cropped it. I like the colors.

Paris Countdown: 9 Days!!!

Friday, December 5, 2008

This is the arch with the two gentlemen from yesterday's post. Done in a primative folk art style with many interesting tidbits set into it. Next time I'm there I'll try to take some closeups.I shot this photo during the crowded art show and found it difficult to get a clear photo.

Paris Countdown:10 Days!

Thursday, December 4, 2008

I'm doing two photos today because these guys go together.. they are on the side of an arch at the back entrance to The House of Blues at Downtown Disney. This area is where they put the folk art when they have their Festival of the Master's annual art show. I like the crude collage way that it's done. Lots of odds and ends embedded in the concrete.

Paris Countdown: 11 Days!!

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

My neighbor's yard offers many photo opportunities.. He has a collection of statues that have aquired a nice aged patina.. I thought this one would look best in sepia.

Paris Countdown:12 Days!!

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

This is my neighbor's tree.. The orange is about 1 inch across and his little tree is full of them. I need to find out the proper name for it. In the background is a bouganvilla that covers the back of the house and blooms a number of times during the year.

I just realized that yesterday was an aniversary.. One month since I started this blog.

Paris Countdown: 13 Days!

Monday, December 1, 2008

Theme Day: Circles/Spheres

This isn't Kissimmee.. I took this photo July 2007 in Albi, France. I think these are to keep cars from careening onto the walk areas and smushing the pedestrians. What a good idea.. Albi was lovely. We took a very enjoyable cruise on the river while there and of course went to their stunning cathedral. I am so smitten with France and cannot wait to get to Paris.

Paris Countdown: 14 Days!!

Click here to view thumbnails for all participants

Sunday, November 30, 2008

I stayed home today because the cable repairman was due. My DVR has been acting up for two weeks and this is third scheduled visit.. Boxes have been swapped out, cable lines have been replaced and much pole climbing and testing has been done. Right now it is working but not sure if it will last.

My cable connection has been erratic in the past but today was only out for a few hours so I did spend much time here. Early morning it was with a cup of coffee with a switch to herbal tea for the rest of the day. This is my favorite mug. It has a drawing of a cat and a tiny mouse and reads "Chat et souris".. I have had this for years and it is a nice big comfortable cup so it is my photo for the day. I am still worn out from "Turkey Day" and beginning to want something more than leftovers.

Paris Countdown: 15 Days!!

Saturday, November 29, 2008

This sits with some live oaks between my house and my neighbors. It's a quiet serene spot that seems to go with yesterday's prayer flags.

Paris Countdown: 16 Days!

Friday, November 28, 2008

Busy, busy day today.. Delicious meal with old friends and neighbors. Full of food, happy, content, and tired.. so my photo is of my old and tired prayer flags that are still waving in the breeze in my yard. Soon I'll need to replace them but for now I enjoy watching them the way they are.

Paris Countdown: 17 Days

Thursday, November 27, 2008

One of the many colorful quilts hanging in the classroom at Queen Ann's Lace Quilt Store.
I am attracted to colorful quilts with black backgrounds. I think it's the contrast that I like.

Happy Thanksgiving to all who celebrate it..

Paris Countdown: 18 Days

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

The Kissimmee Sculpture Experience has a new group of works on display.. This is in front of the Quilt shop. It is "Holding Fixture" by Bill Platt of Chuluota, Florida. Medium is Steel. Measures 24" X 36" and weighs 150 lbs.

I hope to get downtown this week to photograph more of these. I've noticed that there seem to be more color in this new batch.

Paris Countdown: 19 Days

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

This is another of the window displays at Disney's Polynesian Resorts. I liked his expression and colors.

Paris Countdown:20 days

Monday, November 24, 2008

This young lady is one of the delightful Disney window mannequins. I thought she was worth photographing. She was in the window with her entire family but for some reason I only captured her.. It must have been her exuberant expression.

Paris Countdown: 21 days

Sunday, November 23, 2008

These are the strange looking seed pods on a plant that grows in my area. The flowers are large clusters of white and then develop into these ominous looking star pods. The plant is very invasive and sends down long tap roots that are difficult to remove. I researched it many years back and the closest plant I could find was belladonna. It didn't match exactly but may be a close relative. I cut it back and pull it out but it persistantly grows in any area that isn't mowed or kept clear.

Paris Countdown: 22 days

Saturday, November 22, 2008

This should be the last of my red flowers. These are from two big bushes that are in my front yard. When I bought a plant about 20 years ago, the package said it was a miniature rose. It wasn't but it's turned out to be a delightful plant. Nothing fancy and if not contained, it spreads all over the place. It requires no fancy care and doesn't get black spot or any other rose diseases.

It roots easily from cuttings and that's why I have two. My lawn guys cut it back regularly and take the clippings home to make more. Most of my neighbors have plants that were started from my first one. It blooms all year round and has a simple old fashioned bloom that has a nice fragrance.

Paris Countdown:23 days

Friday, November 21, 2008

Here's another of the Red plants blooming in my yard this week. It's the hibiscus and comes in many other colors but this is the most common.

The Genus Hibiscus comprises of plants also commonly called hibiscus and less widely known as rosemallow The large genus of about 200–220 species of flowering plants in the family Malvaceae (the mallow family, along with members like cocoa, cotton, okra, baobab and durian) native to warm, temperate, subtropical and tropical regions throughout the world. The genus includes both annual and perennial herbaceous plants, and woody shrubs and small trees.

Paris Countdown: 24 days

Thursday, November 20, 2008

This is another red flower currently blooming in my yard. It's the Red Powderpuff (Calliandra haematocephala) and is a native of Brazil. A sprawling bush or shrub that can grow up to 10 feet tall and 10 feet wide.

Countdown to Paris: 25 days

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

I did a walk about the yard yesterday and there are still so many flowers blooming. Most of them are red at this time of year. This one is Turk's Cap [Malvaviscu drummondi]

Although Turk's cap blooms off and on throughout the year, it always seems to look its best in early winter when its brilliantly bright red flowers are most appreciated. Displayed against rich green leaves, the flowers resemble wilted hibiscus buds hanging from the bush. But these buds never open! The entire plant resembles the hibiscus to which it is closely related. The 2 in (5 cm) long tubular flowers appear to be constructed of crimson crepe paper that nods against the rich green foliage. The large oval leaves are about 8 in (20.3 cm) long. This shrub can grow to 10 ft (3 m) in height.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Sometimes it's good to look up.. This is just part of a huge chandelier at the BoardWalk resort at Walt Disney World. I've been spending quite a bit of time there these past two weeks but it's a place of much eye candy. Visual feasting.

Monday, November 17, 2008

These are two of the friendly Sandhill Cranes who regularly visit my yard. They mate for life and are great moochers.. We aren't allowed to feed them but I still sneak them something now and then.

They are fun to watch when the male dances for the female or when they find a small twig and pretend it's prey.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

This is Endeavour's lift off into space last evening. They say it is the last scheduled night launch for the shuttle program which is scheduled to end soon. Many are hoping for an extension.

I took this from the tv and after lift off, went outside and looking east saw the full moon and a brilliant flare of light lifting into the night sky. I tried to photograph it but my poor little Sony digital just wasn't up to the challenge. I have two blobs of light and that's all but trust me, it was a beautiful sight.

Saturday, November 15, 2008


Went to the Polynesian Resort at DisneyWorld the other day to have lunch with my inherited daughter and her husband.. They live in north Florida and have annual passes to Disney.. Each time they visit they like to stay at different resorts on the property and eat at different restaurants. This time they picked the Kona Cafe at the Polynesian. I had my camera and found the overhead light fixture interesting. This is it.

Friday, November 14, 2008


This isn't technically, Kissimmee, but it's within a few miles. This is outside the
Wolfgang Puck Restaurant at Downtown Disney. I was there last weekend for their annual Festival of the Master's Art Show and I LOVE to eat here. In addition to great variety of food I enjoy the fanciful mosaic decor and artwork. Outside the mosaic walls are topped with words.. One of them is "LOVE".

Thursday, November 13, 2008

London Time!

This is a photo of a clock that caught my eye in the antique store downtown.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Veteran's Day!

A local business fills their lawn with flags on Veteran's Day and Memorial Day.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

This is a strange little sculpture made up of railroad spikes and is only indirectly related to the Quilt Shop. Our city has been displaying scultures by Florida artists around the downtown area for about a year now. This little "urchin" sculpture was part of the second group. I took the photo just outside the door of the quilt shop. I called them the next day because I had neglected to write down any information on this spikey little thing. My friend went outside and the pedestal was empty. All of the sculpture pedestals were. It was time to take them down and put up another round.

So.. I have no information on this work of art.. No artist, no name, no source, no nothing... but I have learned a valuable lesson. Write down any important information when the photo is taken.
So if you are the artist, or know who the artist is, contact me and I will edit this post and give proper credit for it.

Monday, November 10, 2008

As promised, here is Lacey, the quilt store cat. She's fat and sassy and very spoiled. She's groomed and brushed almost every day and fussed over by both staff and customers. Her unusual marmalade tortoise shell markings make for delightful looking cat. If you come to Kissimmee, be sure to stop in Queen Anns Lace quilt store and visit Lacey. Tell her Karen sent you.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

I know that this is a rather boring photograph but it's just to set the scene for the next few days. This is Queen Ann's Lace quilt store and once was located on the busy Highway 192 just North of our downtown area. I worked there for many years and have closets and shelves full of fabric to prove it.

I enjoyed making quilts. Picking the fabrics, cutting it up and spending hours piecing them together was the best part. There's something zen about the sound of the sewing machine. It's when the mind wanders and ideas for the next quilt and the one after that seem to be born. What if I did that instead of this? What other colors would work? What if I turned these blocks in a differnt direction?

Now the store is downtown, with a new owner and except for one old friend, a new staff. One thing I like about this one is that they have a store cat. She's lovely and I think tomorrow I'll post her photo.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Here is his mate. They are at their post most mornings, perhaps scanning for smoke signals. She doesn't seem to be as beat up as he is. Life appears to have been much kinder to her.

Friday, November 7, 2008

I see this weary Indian Statue on the street in Downtown Kissimmee and I wonder what he is searching for. He has a polar bear draped over his shoulder. Is it alive or dead?

Too many questions.. no answers.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

I took this photo Tuesday near my polling place. I had voted the week before but went looking for an election day photo op.. wanted long lines, interesting people occupying the time, perhaps some sitting in chairs or reading books. No lines, just signs stuck into the ground all around the front of the building and around the corner. On the corner is our odd Monument of the States. It's a strange thing that was here when I moved here 22 years ago. I don't think anything has been added in that time. It consists of stones and things set into the towering giant state by state. I think they are all represented here along with other places.

This is in many tourist books and I've had visiting friends ask to see it. The street is Monument Avenue and the street markers were all little mini posts in the shape of the monument.

Having it surrounded by political signs on Election Day just seems appropriate.

From the plaque in front of the monument:
Dedicated by U.S. Senator Claude Pepper in 1943, the 40 foot high Monument of States was designed by Dr. C.W. Bressler-Pettis. Built from stones furnished by tourists, governors, a prime minister and President Franklin D. Roosevelt, the monument contains 1500 stones collected for 22 years, including meteors, stalagmites, petrified wood, teeth and bone, and represents every state in the US and 20 foreign countries.
Dr. Bressler-Pettis oversaw the design of each stage of construction and was the sculptor of the 562-pound concrete bald eagle that perches on the peak of the monument.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

White Chairs

I'm still hanging around the antique store because there are just so many interesting items to see and photograph.

I thought this pile of white chairs made a nice transition from the white hats. I like old chairs. I like white chairs. I very much like this stack of white chairs..

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Sticking with the Cow Town theme, here is a stack of cowboy hats. I thought they looked interesting piled up and all nice and shiny white. In the old Cowboy movies I watched as a child, the white hat was always worn by the Good Guy..

If you look carefully, there is a stack of black hats behind them.. It's a much shorter pile.. Hmmm, do the bad guys buy more hats or does the store just stock fewer of them?

Monday, November 3, 2008

Cow Town Symbols

One of our Kissimmee street lamps backlit by a rare cloudy sky. The boot symbolizes Kissimmee's Cow Town history. When driving the cattle, Kissimmee was a rest stop on the trip north. Cattle are still raised here in the county and in the midst of the suburban sprawl it's pleasant to find fields of grazing cattle.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

I walked downtown yesterday and wanted to photograph this before it's gone. Lanier's Antique Store has some delightfully vintage Halloween decorations in the window and I just adore this old witch..

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Theme Day! BOOKS! November 1st 2008

I went downtown to Lanier's Antique store and photographed some books.. These are the most interesting to me. Old flyers and magazines and even some sheet music. Stored in a basket in a side booth waiting for someone to buy them and take them home.

First Day of Daily Photo Blog!

I just discovered CityDailyPhoto thanks to a BookBoard friend. I was already subscribing to the guy who started it all, Eric, of
Paris Daily Photo.

What a great idea.. Here is my first although it isn't today's theme of "Books." This is one of Tomatoes on display at the local Thursday morning Farmer's market.