March 29, 2009

Rainy Day -- What To Do?

Recently, I purchased a copy of Blokus. This is a fun game about geometry and strategy. It is available in different versions. The point of the basic game is to place all 21 playing pieces on the board while blocking your opponents. The game is for 2-4 players. There is a whole website devoted to Blokus. This is my rainy day suggestion.

March 25, 2009

The Lawn Mower Filter

It's raining again, which is good for the yard and bad for photography and flowering trees.

But I write today about the air filter on the lawn mower. I didn't know there was one. A kind neighbor saw us at the bottom of the driveway looking at the lawnmower. He showed me the dirty filter and sent me to Sears for a new one. It was $6.99 and apparently a good idea to change each year. My lawnmower was polluting the air with a stream of smoke. Now that I have my filter, it is raining and there will be no lawnmowing.

March 23, 2009

Toby Keith's My List

This is one of my favorite songs. My List is on the Pull My Chain CD. It sums up what's important on that perpetual list of things to do. Artist, Toby Keith says, "Go for a walk, say a little prayer... Put on my glove and play some catch. It's time that I make time for that."

He says, "the grass can wait 'cause I've got more important things like pushing my kid on the backyard swing..." The refrain is "Start livin' that's the next thing on my list." This is a more mellow Toby Keith.

He can be loud and lots of fun, but this is instead a sentimental sweet song. Most of the other songs on this CD you won't want your children to hear, but this one is worth purchasing separately.

March 19, 2009

It stopped raining!

We had a beautiful Spring day yesterday. And, I was able to get out my bike. The first one had a hole in the inner tube. But the next bike worked great! So I took the mountain bike out on the road and found two beautiful Japanese Magnolias. The first bloomed much earlier, the week it snowed, so many of its beautiful blooms did not last and the whole tree did not bloom at once.

Another tree, down the street, is just a baby... Visit my photography site at Enjoy the view!

March 18, 2009

Haggadot on Amazon

I created a list on amazon of all the haggadot in my Personal Haggadah. The list includes a few notes by me about each text. The link is below. Let me know what you think!

March 16, 2009


It's fast approaching -- wedding season. I had fun shooting a wedding this weekend. Here's an image of the bride. I loved her veil. This image was altered using photoshop. The bride really had a nice time at the wedding and took her time to enjoy the guests.

March 10, 2009

Fall Photograph

It feels like summer outside, and I am looking forward to the flowers... I thought I'd share a cool image that I shot in October at Big South Fork National Park. The leaves are colored a little using Adobe Photoshop. This image is titled "Sup."

This past weekend, at an art festival, a woman asked me about taking classes and I recommended The Showcase Camera School and Evening at Emory in Atlanta. Showcase is a great camera store; I have only taken two classes there and found them helpful. At Emory, Ron Mayhew is a great teacher.

March 01, 2009

Purim's Mitzvah

Purim begins at sunset on Monday, March 9, 2009. The kids enjoy the holiday because they dress up in costume. It is also the time of year when donating to charity is officially one of the 613 Mitzvot. According to the Tanach, “This shall they give everyone who passes through the census – a half shekel…” Exodus 30:13.

Eisenberg in his book The 613 Mitzvot explains it is customary to donate three half dollars on the eve (Monday night) of the Megillah reading. In the Tanack’s footnote, it says that “the requirement for half a coin alludes to the concept that no Jew is complete unless he joins with others. Alone, he is only “half” of his full potential.”

This fits nicely with Rabbi Heller’s comment that giving in this economy may be comprised of small dollar donations from more and different people than in the past. He suggested also that businesses and non-profits will find new or old ways of surviving. On Saturday at services at B’Nai Torah he reminded us that in the past kiddish was prepared by volunteers in the synagogue kitchen.

Something Different at Blockbuster!

I decided to rewatch a recent James Bond film yesterday, but as I viewed the trailers, I changed my mind and wanted to rent The Holiday. So, I drove to Blockbuster Video. At first, I couldn't find the video and a saleswoman pointed me in the right direction. There were two copies of the film. As I was checking out, I told the employee my story about the trailers and he said, "If you like The Holiday, there is another really good movie you will have to see." He was thinking and remembered, "It's The Family Stone; you will have to rent it."

So, I have been going to Blockbuster for 20 years, and I just got my first personal recommendation. I like this better than the recommendations at amazon because it came from a live person. I'll be interested if this happens again. What a marketing idea ! Wow!

I enjoyed my movie. The 2006 release, The Holiday is a great chick flick. Two women are tired of dating having just broken up with boyfriends and decide to exchange homes in two different countries. Yes, of course, they meet new men... This movie is loaded with stars: Cameron Diaz, Kate Winslet, Jude Law, Eli Wallach and Jack Black. It is rated PG-13. The plot is credible and includes a nice subplot in that Iris (Kate Winslet) meets her neighbor Arthur Abbott (Eli Wallach) who educates her in the film industry and relationships. It is worth buying because it's a nice uplifting film.