Friday, April 30, 2010

Payoffs of Blogging

Payoffs, doesn't that have a great sound?

Last night I was IMing with a dear friend when my email delivered not one but TWO emails from readers contacting me to:
  1. Thank me.  You are welcome.  Email from Annemarie (who for some reason I have called Amy more than once, geesh how uncouth is that??).  She wanted to thank me, and let me know, she owes me one (isn't that sweet?).  She is a faithful reader, reads me, skips over and reads the Wild Ones (Anne and Karen) and then jumps up and down my favorite blogs list and reads some of those as well.  Last night she discovered Family Tree Writer hosted by Sherry Stocking Kline.  Sherry is from Sumner County Kansas and Annemarie has an interest in Sumner County.  Annemarie is very happy to have discovered this blog and I am happy to have been a helper along the way!
  2. Then there was the email from Debbie Blanton McCoy over at Blanton Family Roots and Branches.  She read my post, Stepping Sideways, Research Style, and to quote her, "When I saw that death certificate, I did a double take. I had to look at it several times to make sure I was seeing what I thought I saw. Haha!"  Debbie, it seems, has done a bucket load of Blanton research, and has been looking for a J. M. Blanton found on the 1860 census of Walker County Alabama, she knows him to be J. Marion Blanton.  But J. Marion has been a bit of a brick wall for her.  So, we will be doing some sharing and comparing, which we started last night.  I have to fess up, I have seen her blog several times, and looked at the Blanton name, but had not done any follow up about it. Guess we needed that death certificate first, eh??
So, ya, blogging has it's payoffs, and last night there were two.


*By the way, Marion Blanton married the sister of my great-grandmother.

*Graphic thanks to http://webclipart.about.com/ (Not sure bout that eye thing there, is she in shock or happy?  LOL)

Copyright 2010, CABS for Reflections From the Fence

Thursday, April 29, 2010

They Are Back, Spring 2010

Earlier today while out digging in the flower beds, my attention was drawn to the pond.  Geese!  The first appearance, or the first one I have been privy to.  I always enjoy the first appearance, as there always seems be babies, gozlings.  I snuck back in the house, bringing the yorkie yappers with me, grabbed that new Sony and went back out, leaving the yorkie yappers inside!

I went over to the flower bed, zoomed and took a few photos.  I was intent on getting a good photo of those gozlings, cause they could not be more than a few days old, they still have some yellow showing.  I eventually walked down the hill some trying to get closer without spooking them.  Eventually I decided, to go for broke and walked much closer than I have ever dared before, and yep, they went into the water, where I was able to get several pretty good photos, like this one.


Three gozlings, one behind each parent and one in the middle. 
Still a bit yellow.  Guestimate, about 4 inches long when sitting
in the water.  I had the zoom to the max, and was
standing, ohhh, 50 foot away.



*Reminder, clicking on the photo will open it to a larger view, you can see the gozlings even better that way.

Copyright 2010, CABS for Reflections From the Fence

Stepping Sideways, Research Style

Like cousin Anne, I have been over at FamilySearch (beta) doing a little snooping.  Unlike cousin Anne, I have not been able to spend hours snooping, and unlike very lucky good researcher cousin Anne, I have found very little.  Seaches for several marriages in the New York marriage collection, nadda.  I have come to the conclusion, they must have married on some space ship!

So, I took a quick gander at the Arkansas marriage data base, and found one!  WAHHOOO.  Gotta say, however, if I did not have the date and full names for the bride and groom, I probably would not have looked at the image for WH Pershall and NA Burns or, as I know them to be:  William Henry Pershall and Nancy Almeda Burns.


OK, for the moment it appears I have found all the Arkansas marriages I am gonna find.  So, I note that the site is also offering Deaths in Georgia up to (and including) 1930.  OOO, I have a death in Georgia for mid 1930, and I don't have this fellow's parent's names, could I possibly find his death recorded on the data base, get an image, and would there be, please let there be:


Well, moving sideways, I got the death certificate, but, sighhhhhhh, no parents names.  Bummed, I have their marriage record already, and nope, no parents names there either.

Two steps forward, errr, sideways.  But, I got documents!  WAHHOOOOO!



Copyright 2010, CABS for Reflections From the Fence

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Follow Up, Google, Not All Improvements ARE Improvements

Google has reversed the "improvement" and for now we are back to the old version of photo loading.

One thing that I saw that did appeal (the ole lemonade from lemons attitude) was the ability to choose another Picasa photo album.  For those of us that are heavy image bloggers when we end up with close to 1000 photos in the default album, it can get cumbersome.  (Yes, bloggers near and wide, you too have a Picasa album, Google has to have a storage area for those nice photos you want IN your posts, and that is where they go.)

If I had a wish list for the dudes and dudettes over at Google it would be:
  1. Allow me to easily choose another target album at Picasa for uploading of my photos, FROM my blogger, with the old and most desireable upload tool.  Choices should be made from the Settings page, or something like that.  If there is such a tool out there and I am missing it, PLEASE someone tell me where!
  2. Allow me to leave notes on GoogleSearch for those obnoxious Sploggers.  You took that away and they are most happy and splogging away!   Not fair, I cannot fight back!
Thanx Google for reversing that silly photo picker.  You do so much right, but this one in this format was not one of your right things.



Copyright 2010, CABS for Reflections From the Fence

Wordless Wednesday, Red ? Bird Style

Linda over at Flipside and I have fun on Wordless Wednesday with a little friendly photo competition.  Today she named her post, Wordless Wednesday--A Touch of Red.  She highlights a lovely photo of a cardinal sitting in a tree, the leaves a spring gentle green.

By chance I had prepared this post last evening, and if I stretch a bit, I can match her "RED", with what I believe is a RED tailed hawk. 

Taken in Gulf Shores Alabama area, mid March.


And cropped and blown up as much as the ole Cannon would give me.




*Information on the red-tailed hawk, can be found here

Copyright 2010, CABS for Reflections From the Fence

Google, Not All Improvements ARE Improvements

Google has an ??improvement?? to the uploading of photos on Blogger. 

Please, tell me there is a way to return to the previous version!  This new stuff is labourious, takes forever to load, horrible.

Why do I need to load all my Picasa Web Album photos for Reflections to upload a NEW photo from my hard drive??  I did not have to do this before, I was able to go directly to my hard drive, browse for the photo I needed, click upload and in a short time, I was adjusting said photo in my blog post.  Now I am uploading ALL my album photos and waiting, waiting, waiting.

Note:  I currently have 929 photos on my Reflections Album.

Dear Google:  This improvement is NOT an improvement!

Any one else having issues with this??  Any one have a solution??



Copyright 2010, CABS for Reflections From the Fence

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Tombstone Tuesday, Oyster Bay Baptist Church Cemetery, Oyster Bay, Alabama

Oyster Bay Baptist Church, is a small church cemetery, tucked into a cove created by the church buildings.  It is located at the intersection of Plash, Mund and Ewing Lane, Oyster Bay, Alabama.


Above, the church as you approach.


Above, cemetery tucked in by the buildings.


E C Gerstenberg & his wife, Margaret Louisa.
EC 1814-1900
Margaret 1813-1901

The Oyster Bay Baptist Church Cemetery can be found at Find A Grave, here.  Most of the stones are newer, the Gerstenberg stone above is in the worst shape of all the stones.  From the records at Find A Grave, it appears that Celcila Steiner, who died in 1877, may be the first burial there, although there are a number of the Mund clan that have unmarked stones.



Copyright 2010, CABS for Reflections From the Fence

Monday, April 26, 2010

Birthday Obsevances, Agnes Jackson Butts

Agnes (Aggie) A. Jackson was born April 26, 1870 in Harvard, McHenry County, Illinois to William Jackson and Mary Willis Jackson.

Agnes married Albert Butts, according to his obituary, they married on September 26, 1884 (place unstated, and no record has been found in Illinois).  A marriage was found on the Wisconsin Historical Society online marriage index, the date of that marriage is recorded as September 14, 1884 in Walworth County, Wisconsin.  No copy has been ordered to verify the date, but I am satisfied this record is indeed for this couple.

Albert and Agnes had 4 children, two daughters survived to adulthood.  In 1920 Albert passed and Agnes was shown on the 1930 U.S. Census of Harvard, Chemung Township, McHenry County, Illinois, as a widow who was managing a boarding house.

Agnes died on July 8, 1935 in Harvard, McHenry County, Illinois, and was laid to rest with her husband at the Mt. Auburn Cemetery, Dunham Township, McHenry County, Illinois.



*Photo from her obituary published in the Harvard Herald, Harvard, McHenry County, Illinois, obtained by CABS by photographing the image on a microfilm reader.

Copyright 2010, CABS for Reflections From the Fence

Sunday, April 25, 2010

2009-10 Winter Tana Tour, Man Seas Food, or, Feasting Around Baldwin County

Everyone who knows Man, knows he loves to eat. He loves sea food, as in he sees food and he loves it. No typos there, he loves sea food and all food he sees he loves! (One exception might be yams, but that is another story.)

Man was on a mission, how many of the restaurants that were recommended could we find, visit, and sample.  Needless to say, we did a bit of eatting out while we were in the Gulf Shores area.

One other goal would be to find local eateries, instead of chains that can be found in every major, and even minor city cross this land of ours.  I mean, Cracker Barrell has its merits (cheesy potatos and grits come to mind), but, it is a chain. 

So, even though we did frequent some chains we were really on the hunt for something local, unique, different, YUMMY!!

Man and I made a list of the best of the best for Baldwin County (and some over in Pensacola area, too).

Our list ran like this, some positions were tough calls, was this one better than the next??  But, lets give it a shot.
  1. McGuires, Pensacola, we will revisit this later.  Not a chain.
  2. Long Horns.  Yea, a chain.  SIGHH, but we ate there 2 times, and both were outstanding, deserts to die for, oh, my, yes, TO DIE FOR!!  The second time we ate there, we split a spring salad that has to be the bestest salad ever!  Sugar coated pecans, fresh strawberries, mandarin oranges, feta cheese and loads of other goodies.
  3. Doc's Seafood. Not a chain. Now, ole Carol is not much for seafood, I am a burger lover/snob myself. But, the fish at Doc's was delicate, mild, wonderful. If you can hit Doc's when they have 2 for one dinners, and happy hour going at the same time, you are going to eat fine fine fine and reasonable too! Now, THAT combo is hard to beat.
  4. Big Daddy's, out on Fish River.  Not a chain.  Fun when the weather is great as well as good eats.  You can take your bestest friend Fido with you, eat on the patio, overlooking the river and they will even provide Fido with a fresh bowl of water.
  5. Down South BBQ. Not a chain. This little building puts out the most wonderful smoked bbq food!  We have Randy's just a few miles from here, and in our opinion, Randy's is the best in lower Michigan.  Down South BBQ, even better.  And, they make that pan fried corn bread.  Groannnnnnnnnnnning good.
  6. Lulu's.  Not a chain. If you don't go eat the onion rings while you are in the area, you have just missed the BESTEST onion rings ever.  Rest of the menu was good, however, not outstanding like those onion rings!
  7. Hangout, down at the beach. Not a chain. Sunday brunch, fabulous!!!!  Had an omlet made to order, had crab meat in it, I am running out of words for GREAT!  Deserts were good too.  OK, the entire buffet was more than good!
  8. Live Bait.  Not a chain.  Lunches were a good deal , food was very good, and they had good deserts too!  They had a waiter there that was so interesting and smart.  He sure added a level of enjoyment for us.
  9. Fish River 2.  Second in a chain?   Did lunch, food quite good, portions OUTSTANDING.  Best chicken tenders I have ever had, huge, tender, batter yummy.  Man reported his fish was mmmmm good as well.
  10. Hazel's Nook, for breakfast.  Not a chain.  Had a respectable buffet and even offered omlets to order.  Was always busy, and a lot of locals ate there, that is always a good sign.
  11. Bahama Bobs, on the beach.  Not a chain.  Colorful, interesting, on the beach (did I say it was ON the beach?).  Food was good.
  12. O'Charlies.  Yep, a chain.  Had several meals there, lunch, price very reasonable, food good.
  13. Vallarta Mexican, Pensacola.  Small chain?  Best mexican in the area, good enough that we drove back over there several times when the withdrawal pains got strong!  Gotta have some good mexican on a regular basis.
So, seems we were fairly successful at finding places to enjoy that were not chains, however, I must admit that it is a bit of a surprise that our second favorite place was a chain. But, Long Horns earned that high ranking, actually, I am tempted to move them into first place.  This is a hard call folks!

So, lets revisit McGuires, Pensacola.  We left this almost to the end of our visit, it just kept getting put off, but, finally we said to friends John & Donna, we hear you just HAVE to go to McGuires, and another day trip came to be.  One of the "draws"??? of McGuires is the decor, specificially the ceilings.  Here, have a lookie see:


Yep, that is cash on the ceilings.  Reports vary, but there is somewhere between $250,000 and $900,000. attached to the ceilings of this building. 


Cash on the walls too!

The specialty of the house seems to be the corned beef and cabbage.  The serving is HUGE, half a head of cabbage.  This is really 2 meals in one.  Man and Donna said the horseradish sauce was outta this world.


John and I decided on the Shepperd's Pie.  Delish! John managed to eat all of his, how is beyond me, I took half home for lunch the next day.  Yummy leftovers!


McGuire's, NOT a chain, great food, good brewed on site beer, and the owners seem to have a wickedly black sense of humor, just go stand near the rest rooms.  Oh, yea, we had a fun lunch at McGuires in Pensacola.




* I am still trying to figure out if they ever wash all that cash??  It has to be getting kinda filmy from the food, eh??  We have been told they close once a year to "inventory" the cash!  Wonder what their insurance company has to say about insuring that much ca$h hanging all over??

Copyright 2010, CABS for Reflections From the Fence

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Pond Visitors

Here at the stick built we have a divit, errr, hole, errr, pond.  Our area was molded by glaciers, we have hills, and divits scraped by the retreating glaciers.  Divits, err, holes, fill with water, forming lakes, ponds, swamps.  Lakes, ponds and swamps attract all sorts of critters.  This last week or so our pond has been visited by these critters. 


I know you have to look hard, but, there in the upper left corner of the photo, daddy and mommy. Mommy is having a snack.  Photo with the new Sony, zoom to the max.  I was standing on the deck which is at least 75 feet from the edge of the pond, and the pond's guests were at the back of the pond.  With a bit more cropping, here they are again.




Copyright 2010, CABS for Reflections From the Fence

Friday, April 23, 2010

Happy Birthday to Man's Mom


Man and his Mom.

Happy Birthday



Copyright 2010, CABS for Reflections From the Fence

2009-10 Winter Tana Tour, Fairhope, The Last Visit

Fairhope Alabama became one of our favorite places to visit while we were in Baldwin County.  It is charming, they are a single tax colony/corporation city.  Google it, Fairhope Alabama single tax.  Fascinating.  There are interserting stores, and flowers. LOTS of flowers.  They change the flower beds frequently, I have been told they do it overnight, all the beds in one night.  They had the first tulips and daffodils we saw in the spring

So, our last day trip before we headed home included the Weeks Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve and Fairhope.  We had a little lunch, and then just wandered around town.  And, Carol took photos, again, mostly flowers, and some architecture.  And here are the best of the best.


Above: Tulip magnolia,  young speciman, tucked in the garden in the "French Quarter" of Fairhope.   The French Quarter is built around an old courtyard that reminds you of New Orleans. 


This bench did not photograph well with the bright son, much of the detail is hard to see with the glare.  Hard to take, neat benches and glaring sun!  LOL


Above, there is that bench again, and wisteria.  Somewhere below the wisteria is a sign that announces the French Quarter. 


Wraught iron on the balcony, the rounded front of the building, both drew my interest.


Fairhope has flower beds full of flowers, and they also have pots of flowers, flowers everywhere, oh, heaven!  This was in a pot, believe it is a geranium.


Not New Orleans, Fairhope Alabama.


And, because I cannot resist, another azalea.  A wonderful end to our stay in Baldwin County, Alabama. 



Copyright 2010, CABS for Reflections From the Fence

Thursday, April 22, 2010

2009-10 Winter Tana Tour, Weeks Bay National Estuarine Reserve Area

Just days before we headed north we drove over to the Weeks Bay area.  We wanted to revisit the bog to see if the pitcher plants were blooming.  Alas, the hard winter had them weeks behind, and all we managed to see were some buds, it would be another 7 to 14 days before they would bloom.

So, we decided to run over the the Weeks Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve. We had not been to the site on the west side of Fish River, with the nature center.  We had talked about it, had not done it, here was our chance.  They have a interpretive center building, which houses displays of wildlife (displays are not mmmmm, not alive, but preserved, eh?) that are native the area, classrooms, and even  few baby alligators that are alive.  There is also an interpretive boardwalk, which is where we decided to spend the bulk of our time.  I took photos, about 55 photos in the Weeks Bay area.

This first photo was actually taken in Magnolia Springs along the road that had those magnificient live oaks.  Enjoy:



Above:  Bracken, growing in the bog area.



Above, 2 photos of this unidentified blooming bush.  There was a LOT of this on the Interpretive Walk, but, I neglected to record the name.  I am sure my good friends will be able to help me out.  Reminds me of azalea.


Above:  This vivid azalea was in front of the interpretive center building.

After an enjoyable stroll along the boardwalk we decided to spend the rest of our day in Fairhope, I'll share that with you in another post.



Copyright 2010, CABS for Reflections From the Fence

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Wordless Wednesday, Tulips

Linda, Flipside, has tulips today, VERY pretty tulips!  I have very few tulips in my yard, they have to be grown right by the house or the deer will eat them.  I had a nice display a few years ago, but that area is now home to my iris colletion.

So, digging through the archives, I present the Tulips of Thomas Jefferson's Gardens at Monticello Virginia.









Copyright 2010, CABS for Reflections From the Fence

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Tombstone Tuesday, Fairhope Colony Cemetery, Fairhope, Baldwin County, Alabama

Our last day trip during our stay in Gulf Shores, Alabama was to include as it's very last stop, the Fairhope Colony Cemetery.   We happened upon it, not really looking, but rather driving around looking at flowers.  Of course, once I spied the gate, I had Man turn around and drive in.  I jumped out of Big Butt and spent just a short time walking around the cemetery.  I managed to take about 40 photos.  Say what??  Here are some of what I thought were the best.


Above:  Front gate and stone walls. 

 

Above: More fencing and stone work.  Detail on the fencing delights.


Above:  It was only AFTER I took this photo of this
peaceful place to rest and comtemplate that I realized
sitting would be a bit "interesting", ok, difficult!


Statuary always attracts and fascinates.


Above:  I have NO clue.  Do you??


Not many of these raised burial plots in Michigan
where we live, so, I always find myself drawn to them.

At this time there are a limited number of interments for Fairhope Colony Cemetery recorded at Find A Grave.

Fairhope Colony Cemetery, a very nice place to end our visit to the Gulf Shores and Baldwin County Alabama area.



Copyright 2010, CABS for Reflections From the Fence