May 26, 2017

Cell Phone Foolery

1. Yesterday Lynn gave me a second present for Mother's Day, since she had forgotten about having purchased it some time ago. She already gave me a nice dish garden and then remembered later that there was a decorative pillow for me. Rather than describe it, I'll just show you!

Yes, it looks like Flash!

2. Here's another face. I saw this in an outdoor sculpture display. 

Sharing with Black and White Weekend
3. I took this sunset picture from a drive-in restaurant.
Skywatch and Orange You Glad It's Friday
4. Here's another one I took through the windshield. I altered it using a Photoshop action from the Coffeeshop Blog.
In Strasburg, VA
5. For this one I used a Photoshop filter that's supposed to look like an oil painting.

Have a good weekend!

May 25, 2017

The Running Fight, 155 Years Ago

On Saturday I went to a history program in nearby Middletown. My friend Ranger Shannon was presenting "The Running Fight," a tour on the battle that took place along the Valley Pike on May 24, 1862 following the Battle of Front Royal. (I've done a couple versions of the Battle of Front Royal Tour in previous years but have never covered this lesser known battle of Jackson's Valley Campaign.) 

The tour started at the Wayside Inn in Middletown and then went south to the Belle Grove area.
Related Map: Front Royal to Winchester

I thought this fence beside the road was scenic. (If you want to see more fences, check out the linkup at Looking for Identity.)

We turned around at Cedar Creek and headed back north. This marker barely mentions this struggle because it deals with an earlier battle, but it does say:
"... on May 24, as the Federals retreated to Winchester, Collis' Zouaves (Union) were cut off and nearly captured by Jackson when they were left at the bridge as a rear guard."

We turned around at Cedar Creek and finished north of Middletown at the outskirts of Stephens City, which was called Newtown in 1862.

A marker there also deals with another battle but an illustration on it looks like what I imagine this "running fight" would have looked, as Federals struggled to get their wagons to safety.

Sharing with Signs, Signs

One of the men on the tour mentioned that he is raising funds for a marker that relates to the Battle of Front Royal. It will deal with Turner Ashby's attack on Buckton Station, where he cut the telegraph lines, destroying communications between Front Royal and Bank's Fort in Strasburg. (See related post.)

The train no longer stops in Buckton but the station probably stood at the far right of this scene, where a later building now stands abandoned. 

May 24, 2017

Ducks and Ducklings

We've been watching for baby ducks and geese by the lake. Finally, a large group of ducklings has appeared! 

I didn't notice until I got the second photo ready to post that daddy duck is watching from the upper left! Ducks are excellent parents.

I haven't seen any babies with the muscovies this year. They are interesting ducks.

Sharing with Wednesday Waters

May 22, 2017

A Barn and Random Fun

Maybe it's silly but I get excited when I can exceed expectations for a challenge. In this case I not only found a nice barn for the Barn Collective, I got to get some pictures inside the barn and even from the back! And best of all, there were baby lambs! 

I got photos for some other linkups, too, and put them in the format for Good, Random, and Fun.

The Good: Loudoun County Farm Tours meant that various farms were open to visitors and I chose one that was not too far and was likely to have lambs. I was not disappointed. This cutie was 9 days old. 

Here Momma Sheep is keeping watch over her sleeping babies. They were only 2 and a half days old!

There were plenty of adult sheep too. The farm is named Three Bags Wool.

The Random: I was surprised to find a mural inside the barn! There were other touches of art on the farm, and now I see that the farm is available for parties and weddings, so that explains the extra-nice decor. 
Sharing with Monday Murals
The Fun: Families were enjoying the farm. The pond had plenty of frogs and dragonflies to interest children.

Other attractions included baby chicks, a rope-making demonstration, and a straw pony.

Sharing with Mosaic Monday and Seasons

May 21, 2017

Art Show in a Church

Today we went to the Piedmont Regional Art Show in The Plains, Virginia. It was held in beautiful Grace Episcopal Church, founded in 1855. The current stone structure was consecrated in 1918. 

The art show was held in the church's auditorium. We were impressed by the quality and variety of paintings and photography.

Click on image to see it larger.

The sanctuary was open to those who wanted to see it. I was glad to go in and admire the stained glass windows. There is something beautiful about light shining through colored glass.

The Plains is a small town once called White Plains. It is in Virginia's wealthy (and lovely) horse country.

May 20, 2017

Older and Wiser

Flash in May, 2017

May 19, 2017


This week's theme for My Town Shoot Out is "Escape" and I'm using some photos from Garden Week to illustrate this word.

Perhaps you like to escape through music or art. 

Or perhaps you like to spend time by the water, gazing at it. You can do this by yourself, like this young lady, or you can relax with a friend.

A garden also offers a place to escape. Or a nice inn or hotel.
Sharing with Scenic Weekends and Weekend Green

Can you spot the rabbit trying to escape from the dog? Don't worry, these animals are sculptures!

I hope you escape to something delightful this weekend!

May 18, 2017

Some Fences Near Aldie

These photos are from April so the trees are not fully leafed out. The road is Snickersville Turnpike, which dates to 1786. The scenes here are in vicinity of the 1st Massachusetts Cavalry Monument.

America's Oldest Agriculture College

"A mile north of here, on Oatlands Road, stands the stone and stucco building, erected in 1854 as Loudoun and Mechanical Institute. Its three founders were prominent County agrarian scientists. Unfortunately, America's first agricultural college, Loudoun A&M, failed to thrive and in 1860 folded.

On June 17, 1863, John Singleton Mosby and his Rangers were resting at the school's site and observed the dust clouds from the ferocious Battle of Aldie taking place here.

 In 1916, the school building and property became the headquarters of the National Beagle Club, where today are held the annual beagle trials. In 1982, it was listed on the National Register of Historic Places."

May 17, 2017

Tree Swallow and Friends

On May 7th
With Robin, May 8th
I love the iridescent blue feathers of the tree swallow and I'm pleased that some are nesting in our yard. This guy likes to perch, and I've spotted him several times on the back of a bench. Sometimes another bird is nearby.

With Finch, May 16th