Friday, July 31, 2009

Two Women You Should Meet

I am not giving Obama a free pass. I’m giving him a chance.

Here is what Helen has to say about herself: My name is Helen Philpot. I am 82 years old. My grandson taught me how to do this so that I could “blog” with my best friend Margaret Schmechtman who I met in college almost 60 years ago. I have three children with my husband Harold. Margaret has three dogs with her husband Howard. I live in Texas and Margaret lives in Maine.

You really don't want to miss their blog post called, Rush Limbaugh is Bigger than Walter Cronkite. It's a perfect example of why so many people read their blog and leave comments.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Stormy Sunset for Skywatch Friday

Here is another of our wonderful summer storms which was approaching just as the sun was setting here in eastern New Mexico.

For sky photography from all over the world, be sure to see Skywatch Friday.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

New Mexico Digital History Project

I don't know how I missed this website before, but I've recently come across an amazing resource for anyone who is interested in New Mexico--it's the Digital History Project of the New Mexico Office of the State Historian.

Once at the home page, having chosen HTML or Flash, you can navigate between sections called Story, Place, Time, and People.

In the "Story" section, in addition to being able to choose from a number of "books," you can hear examples of native languages being spoken. Some of those included are Nambe Tewa, Santa Ana Keres, Acoma Keres, and Nde Bizaa. Some of the books in this section are on Faith, Symbols, Wisdom, Prophecy, etc. Under "The Book of Children," for example, you can find Elizabeth Willis DeHuff and the Young Artists at the Santa Fe Indian School; an essay on Pie Town by an 8th grader in 1976; and a 1980 letter from the children in a Pojoaque classroom who were responding to one of the deadliest prison uprisings in history, at the Penitentiary of New Mexico near Santa Fe.

The "Time" section is represented as a spiral. Many of the dates are clickable and lead to digitized documents and primary sources.

"Place" is divided into Counties, Communities, Land Grants, the Camino Real, and a wonderful literary map with links to authors and their works by clickable locations around the state.

The "People" section is about the lives "of individuals and groups who have left a mark on the cultural landscape of New Mexico." There are currently 19 groups of people represented. You can find native peoples, outlaws, governors, settlers, artists, etc.

As the New Mexico State Historian tells us in the introduction to the site, "New Mexico history is worth remembering." This wonderful digital undertaking goes a long way toward making those memories accessible to us all.

Friday, July 24, 2009

A Little More About Estancia

Here are the last of my photos from the town of Estancia, New Mexico.

Part of the school complex, a large campus that includes the elementary, middle, and high schools, as well as the administration offices

A very cool building housing a junk store in the middle of the town

Mural on the feed and hardware store

A beautiful residential example of the adobe architecture seen around the town
There is also an outstanding public building--the Estancia Community Center--that was built as a WPA project in 1934-35. I didn't get a shot of it, but you can see a nice one here on the City-Data website.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

My Eyes Are Full of Sky for Skywatch Friday

The Manzano Mountains

Such a contrast between the dark skies and the bleached grasses

The Vaughn train depot

We traveled a few days ago from Clovis in eastern New Mexico to the Manzano Mountains, which are located a bit southeast of Albuquerque. Here are some of the amazing skies we saw on our journey, both going and coming back.

This storm was just a little bit behind us all the way. Once we got home we sat out on the deck watching it approach until the rain forced us onto the covered patio, where we had to shout to be heard over the powerful winds and rains.

Be sure to look at skies, both calm and stormy, from all around the world via Skywatch Friday.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

More Photos from Estancia

Here are a few more photos from our trip to Estancia, New Mexico. The first is a shot down 5th Street, the main street through town.

Here is a remnant of old wooden sidewalk leading toward the town saloon, The Blue Ribbon.

A closer shot of the Blue Ribbon, which certainly has some fine green chile cheeseburgers. You know we are on a quest to find the best ones in New Mexico, so of course we tried them. We had a lovely picnic down by the lake in the park. Very delicious burgers, very good value.

Here is a for-real Charles Remington life-size statue of a cowboy and his rodeo horse that is on display in the town on 5th Street. There is a rodeo arena at the Torrance County Fairgrounds, just down the road. By the way, the Torrance County Fair will be held this year from August 9th through the 15th. For more information, call the Torrance County Extension Office at 505-246-4745.

There is a wonderful article giving a walking tour of the town in the SW Aviator, with all kinds of great restaurant descriptions and recommendations.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

The Town of Estancia, New Mexico

This is a great little town with a population of just 1700, located southeast of Albuquerque near the Manzano Mountains. It has an amazing city park that includes a small spring-fed lake, a community swimming pool (the only one in Torrance County), a beautifully designed, award-winning library, picnic areas built by local youth, and a very cool fountain. All of these scenes are from the park, which we visited recently.

Monday, July 20, 2009

A New Part of the World (For Me)

We traveled right across part of the middle of the state yesterday, going from Clovis to Estancia. Along the way we stopped at Laguna del Perro, a name that our dogs appreciated. I learned that the Estancia Basin, located between the Manzano Mountains to the west and the Pedernal hills to the east, was the site of a 150-foot deep lake during Pleistocene times*, and has long been a place for salt collection by native peoples.

Obviously, the signs themselves have provided recreational opportunities for passing target shooters. I'm not such a gun fan myself, and I wonder about how many of my fellow motorists are shooting out of their windows on their way down the road they are sharing with me and my family.

*The Pleistocene spanned from 1.8 million to 10,000 years ago

Friday, July 17, 2009

Early Dawn in Eastern New Mexico for Skywatch Friday

Please click on the photo to enlarge it. Check out Skywatch Friday for photos of skies from all over the world.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Bertie Naps

Bertie leads a very busy and energetic life for such a small dog. In the afternoon, he is ready for a little rest.

Nap time, Bertie! Tired little Bertie Pierre climbs into bed, his eyes barely open. I tiptoe away to read my book in peace while little Bertie takes a nap.

Hey! Bertie has an idea! He thinks that Weetzie should sing a lullaby to him to help him fall to sleep. To help Weets, he shows her where the lullaby should be coming out.

It turns out that Bertie would like to sing, too. So they sing...

...and sing...

There, I've finished my book. I tiptoe into the room to find that sleepy little Bertie is just waking up from his nap. Wake up, little Bert, it's time to play!


The Adventures of Bertie Pierre

Bertie's own blog can now be seen at Ruminations of an Ice Cream Philosopher. I am not the author (not kidding here, it is written by my husband), so I take neither credit nor blame for the content

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Story of a Bud, Continued

Until I get my new glasses, I continue to struggle to get my photos in focus. I'm fond of this one from This Bud's for You, because I am pretty sure that some parts of the picture are focused well. To review the beginning of this volunteer sunflower, here is the bud, once again.

The flower, beginning to open.

The lovely newly-born sunflower, enjoying the sunshine.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Log Cabin Baby Blankets

Here are three variations of log cabin knitting, done up for baby blankets. The first two were done in one big square from the center out; the third was made in four squares that could have been put together in a number of ways. Unfortunately, it has a number of errors in it and is, as they say around here, best viewed from the back of a galloping horse passing by.

Speaking of errors, that first one should have had a dark blue square in place of the light blue square in the middle for the pattern to have made more sense. Ah, well.

I believe I like the middle one best, as it reminds me somewhat of some Amish quilts (made of solid color fabrics) that I have seen.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Movies Filmed in New Mexico

Zia Theater mural, Fort Sumner, NM

I've tried before to compile a list of movies filmed in this state, but it's kind of a moving target so I've decided to leave it up to the professionals. Here is what I can find online.

Top Movies Filmed in New Mexico (indexed by location for all states)--I notice, however, that they've left out Believe in Me, filmed in Clovis.

State Theater, Clovis NM

FilmNewMexico, which features an online search by genre, title, and location, and is updated each year

Movies Filmed in New Mexico Compiled by title and/or year released for New Mexico USA from the Internet Movie DataBase

Zia Theater, Fort Sumner, NM

Friday, July 10, 2009

This Bud's For You

"This bud of love, by summer's ripening breath,
May prove a beauteous flower when next we meet."

~William Shakespeare, Romeo and Juliet

Okay, I know that Shakespeare was talking about another kind of bud, but I liked the quote.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

New Mexico Morning for Skywatch Friday

For more dawn (and other) skies from all over the world, check out Skywatch Friday.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Bertie Knits

Bertie Pierre, though just a small dog, has a vast capacity for big adventures. Why, just this morning as I was having a second cup of coffee, he enrolled Gracie the cat in Knitting Lessons. (Click any photo to enlarge it).

Bertie surveys his work-in-progress under Weetzie's disapproving gaze. Note that Gracie is nowhere in sight. She was later found vigorously washing her shoulders, far from this scene.

When I suggested that he was perhaps the only culprit and that there were, in fact, no actual Knitting Lessons, I got this response: "Who, me?"

Cleaning up the mess was a lot of work. Poor little Bertie was completely exhausted and ready for a nap, although it was still only 7:30 AM.

With the yarn all gathered and the mess all tidied, Bertie suddenly spied the crochet hook. "Yoo hoo, oh, Gracie, want to take some Crocheting Lessons?"
For all of Bertie's adventures, click here.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Pecos: The Archaeological Record

Mission remains

From the New Mexico Office of the State Historian, quoted from an article, Cicuique (Pecos Pueblo), by Richard Flint, and Shirley Cushing Flint:

Archaeologist Alfred V. Kidder, working during the years 1915-1929, uncovered the general plan of the north and south pueblos, their construction techniques, their pottery and other daily artifacts. Kidder determined that, in fact, the north pueblo had a rectangular configuration and that "excavation has so far fully confirmed" Castañeda de Nájera's description from the Coronado expedition.

Mission monastery remains

His excavations ascertained the existence of 660 rooms housing approximately 110 families, staggered passageways, seventeen subterranean round kivas, and four above-ground square kivas he called "guardhouse kivas." He determined that the pueblo had as many as four stories, with some flimsy superstructures accounting for some five-story units. In several rooms he uncovered remains of the covered walkways and subterranean connecting passageways...