Saturday, January 17, 2015

Woodmere Art Museum / Walter Elmer Schofield


Thursday, Jack and I went to the Woodmere Art Museum in Chestnut Hill, PA, about a half and hour northwest of Philadelphia.  They have an exhibit of paintings by Pennsylvania-born impressionist Walter Elmer Schofield.  I've only seen his paintings on television or in magazines, but I like them.

Because this is a small museum, I wasn't really expecting much.  Goodness, was I overwhelmed!  They had about thirty or forty of his paintings!  He painted in Pennsylvania, Great Britain, and France.  I apologize, but I didn't expect to be able to take photos at the museum, so I didn't take my camera.  Jack took some photos of another exhibit with his cell phone, but I was so engrossed in the Schofield paintings that I forgot to ask him to take photos of them.  I hope you can see some of them here.  This exhibit closes on January 25th or 26th, so if you're in the area and you want to see it, go now.

They had just installed an exhibit that I thought was creative and fun.  It's a great way to introduce kids to good art.  Do you know the song / rhyme 'I Know and Old Woman Who Swallowed a Fly'?  If you don't know the rhyme / song, you should be able to read it / listen to it here.  This was a favorite song of mine when I was little.  A silly song.  The museum has illustrated the song with paintings from their collection.  Remember, these photos were taken with an I-phone, which the museum encouraged as long as you don't use the flash.

Here are two photos of permanent exhibits at the museum:  a doll house and a portrait of Charles Knox Smith, the founder, over the fireplace decorated for Christmas.  The photo of the lovely Christmas tree didn't come out well, but it was decorated with bows and little ornaments.  Very pretty.

Here are some photos of the 'I Know an Old Woman' exhibit:

And just to wrap things up, here's a painting done of a harbor on the Delaware River in the area that used to be called Southwark, a.k.a. Queen Village, where we live, and Pennsport.  I wish it still looked like this!

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

The New Year is Starting Slowly - Or I Am Anyway

I'm still trying to drag myself out of the holiday blues and regain my normal schedule.

Reading has been slow.  I've started books but can't seem to stay engaged.  I'm sure it's me, not them.  I'm a little depressed to find that I read about eleven fewer books last year than I did in 2013.  There were a few personal problems last year that made finding time to read and concentrating on reading  difficult.

Since 1968, I've been keeping sporadic track of the books I've read.  Sporadic in the earlier years but compulsive for many years.  I use 3 x 5 cards and file them in a lovely old oak double file drawer.  I decided that I didn't have enough to do with my spare time, so I logged all those cards into a program I created on my lap top.  Now I can sort them by author, title, or date I finished reading them.  And they're all on my lap top, so when someone blogs about a book, I can just open my program and check to see if I've read it.  (Yeah, I bet you remember all the books you've read, right?!)

I hate the holidays for many reasons.  Mostly because my late mother was the spirit of Christmas and since we lost her to dementia and to death fifteen years ago, Christmas hasn't been the same.  I don't miss her less, I miss her more.  But we have three little girls in the family, my grandnieces, two 2-year-olds and one 4-year-old, who made this past Christmas more fun.  They're lovely and smart and thoughtful and funny.

Jack has become obsessed with the jigsaw puzzle my sister gave him for Christmas.  I think she's trying to drive him insane.  The puzzle is a borderless poinsettia, that is, the border is the leaves of the plant.  There are no 'edge' pieces like in a regular square or rectangular puzzle.  But bless his little manic soul, he's determined it's not going to get the best of him!  It would be nice to eat at the dining room table again, though.

The two books I've finished so far this year are The Curious Affair of the Third Dog by Patricia Moyes and Die Again by Tess Gerritsen.  Of the two, I liked the second much better.  The first was slow going.  I also decided I don't like mysteries in which the author spends the last five or ten pages explaining what happened.  I want to know what happened by the time I get to the end of the book.  The Tess Gerritsen book was an exciting, fast read, as most of the Rizzoli and Isles books are.  (God save us from that awful television series!)  I needed something like that to help kick me out of my reading slump.

That may or may not be working since I'm currently reading about five books and although I'm enjoying all of them, I don't feel compelled to get back to any of them.  That's not the way I like to read.  There are still a lot of year-end things to do, especially since Jack and I are self-employed.  There are estimated taxes to pay, files to sort out for the accountant, new file folders to make  -  fun stuff, but someone (me) has to do them.

Jack has helpfully pointed out that even though we may retire this year, I, as the business partner / housewife, will still have all the same chores and duties in my role as the housewife.  I hope what he meant to say was that after he retires completely, he'll have more time to learn how to do laundry, fold it properly, and help with the cleaning (which he currently does sporadically).  He'll do most of the cooking, I hope, but he can't buy groceries because other people in the stores drive him mad.  It's best to keep him away form grocery stores unless I can find one that's open 24 hours a day and he can go in the middle of the night.

Turtle, our cat, is correct.  It is now 5:00PM and she's entitled to her dinner.  So, I'll leave you puzzling over this post and hope to have something more interesting to write about soon.

Thursday, January 1, 2015

Happy New Year!


Wishing all my blogging and blog reading friends the happiest and healthiest New Year!