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Posts Tagged ‘self portrait’

Sitting in front of my computer as it turned off, I noticed there is a reflection of me and the room in the mirror shine of my new flat screen monitor, which is black. I thought, hmmmmmm And picked up my camera which was within arm’s reach.

The shot was taken without flash for obvious reason. The only lighting in the room was several feet behind me on the right.

When I downloaded the photos to my computer, they looked almost plain black. See original here.I played with lighting and used the healing tool to remove some dust spots. 😀 Then also applied a noise and despeckle filter.

PhotoShop Elements 5.0 Cannon PowerShot SD 1200 IS

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Here I am, in all my glory, shortly out of the shower. Hair just barely dried and without a stitch of makeup on.

Thanks to Jens for the idea; I cropped the photo and then added an Artistic/Colored Pencil.

[Edit: Does not pay to be an old forgetful woman! lol

I just remembered, when insomnia kicked in this evening (actually morning), that I had not provided a bio. One never asks a person who envisions themselves as a writer to write any thing and expecting it to be brief! lol

Guess I start at the beginning. Born in Victoria County, at a little town along the railroad tracks called Telfener, Texas. Grew up with nine out of 10 siblings, the eldest having died in childhood. My parents were farmers, “on the halves.” Early on in their lives, the living had not been easy.

By the time I came along – the 7th child – we had all the things that life demanded. We had plenty of food in the table, thanks to Mama’s industriousness. She always had a huge garden. And we had livestock, milk, eggs from the farm. Mama and we kids were expected to work hard in the fields. She passed at age 99. I will always miss her.

I remember well the hobos who used to come along the train tracks. Mama never turned one away.

Before I turned 14, I had been baptized into Christ. At that age, we migrated to Seattle in the State of Washington. My oldest brother was off to the Navy before WW II started. Two sisters had married and left home by this time. Counting my folks, there were 8 of us packed into the car headed for Seattle. We looked like something from the Grapes Of Wrath.

Here I was, a young girl straight from the cotton patch with my little handmade cotton drindl skirt and blouse, with my brown oxford shoes thrust immediately into the highest society high school (Queen Anne) that Seattle had to offer. The female students standard attire was wool pleated plaid skirts, Jansen sweaters, and Joyce shoes. The males wore corduroy pants and dress shirts.

My folks had purchased a nice old house at the foot of Queen Anne hill. Many a time I missed the transit bus and had to walk those steep steps up those steep hills to get to school.

I made a few friends, yet didn’t have to labor long at being the “odd girl out” as two years later my parents moved to a farm in a Seattle bedroom community (as they are now called) across Lake Washington in Kirkland. The two cities of Kirkland and Bellevue are almost twin cities. Never know where one ends and the other begins. Most of you are acquainted with Microsoft ‘s being headquartered in Bellevue.

At Kirkland, we lived on a 5 acre orchard. We were able to have about us again our farm animals which produced our milk, eggs and meat. Of course, there was Mama’s big garden and the orchard.

The school in Kirkland wasn’t so high society. The demands on a young teen-aged girl weren’t as great there.

It was in Kirkland where I met my future husband and got married. That was in 1948. We managed through thick and thin to raise 6 children: A girl, 2 boys, another girl and 2 more boys. My oldest child is now age 61, while the youngest will be 49 this year.

As a wife and mother, we made our home, mostly, in the greater Seattle area. Every time we made a move, the first question was: Where is the local church?

DH’s folks lived in the Los Angeles area. We tried two different times to transplant there, but always wound up back in the greater Seattle area, which is in King County. We spent the majority of our lives in Snohomish County on a small farm, again with animals and a garden, and chickens and a cow for milk. Then we moved into the city of Everett. Most of you are aware that is where Boeing built their big super jets.

My DH was a trucker and hauled livestock a lot. Then he went to work for a big door company in Everett. The big Naval Base now occupies the waterfront property where he once built doors.

It was while living in Everett that I started driving school bus. My children were all in school by this time. School bus driving was an ideal occupation because it allowed me to be home, mostly, when the kids were.

In 1970’ish, we decided we wanted to live on the eastern side of Washington State – which is completely different from the Seattle area. Eastern Washington, across the Cascade Mountain Range from Seattle, is known for being, mostly, hot and dry. We purchased a little piece of property about 30 miles west of Spokane.

DH again took up trucking. He hauled plywood from the Indian Reservation to the Spokane Industrial Park, several round trips a day. The roads were narrow, and during the winter time, treacherous.

I hired on with the Spokane school district. This is where I learned how to drive the larger belly-hung diesel buses with the flat noses. Winter weather was always white knuckle driving in the Spokane area. The buses were all on lease to the district from Yellowstone Park Company. When school was out, we had to return the buses to Yellowstone. That was an adventure!

Later on, insert here, one of the times we tried to transplant to California. This time, in the Bay area. Our oldest daughter was living there with our first grandchild. It didn’t take long before we headed back to Washington state. We purchased a house in Spokane, and I went back to work again driving school bus.

My 12 years of driving school bus came to an end when I became burned out. A school bus driver is responsible for their passengers, their parents, the school district, the crazies on the road, terrible weather conditions in the winter time, and their equipment. There is always one or two students on any given school bus that is unmanageable. As time went on, the rudeness of the students, their complete disregard for their and others safety had become more of the norm than not. I was tired of dealing with them, so I quit. (I do not know why this paragraph will not format the same as the rest. Sorry!)

We lived in Spokane when Mt. St. Helens blew. Spokane’s sunny day turned to midnight  at noon when the ash started blowing over and down. Surviving that was an ordeal which could be another tale.

For the past while, DH had been in his own trucking business. I even drove a semi over-the-road with him on a couple of long trips out, but soon realized that was not my cup of tea. One of the agents who dispatched him declared bankruptcy while owing us considerable back wages. Match that with me no longer being employed, and we had a problem.

We went back to Seattle to find work. This time, we got into Property Management. Over the course of being employed in that field, this hick from Texas managed to rub elbows with millionaires.

I got into writing about this time. I rubbed elbows with some of Seattle’s famous writers. Ann Rule and J.A. Jance to name two. I soon found myself involved in critique groups, and somehow, found myself managing two poetry critique groups – without me knowing a thing about writing. But I learned.

This hick who could not add two and two together as a child, was managing property and money and banking almost a million dollars a year for our employer.

During this time, we gained custody of our 22 month old granddaughter. We had planned on becoming sno-birds when we retired. We had already purchased a large 5th wheel RV for that purpose. Having a young child changed things.

We yearned for the Spokane area. So we quit that job. I left behind a “budding career” in writing. I could never connect with anyone after that who wanted to become involved in a Writer’s Group.

Because our granddaughter had to be enrolled in school (she was now in kindergarten) we hired on for a “little job” of managing an RV park and a small motel in Leavenworth, WA. (Go here. Or google the name.) We were there during the big forest fire – which is another tale.

After 7 years more of dealing with the public, we were both tired and decided to retire. By this time, our granddaughter had gone to live with her father (our 3rd son). Our eldest son made his home in N. Idaho. We moved our RV to his property and lived there in it for 5 years. DH cut firewood, selling it to augment our income. Then he became ill with cancer.

Our 3rd son insisted we move in with him in Spokane after a fire made living in our RV impossible. Besides that, living in Idaho made getting DH to the hospital for treatments an all day affair due to the considerable distance. Living back in Spokane made transporting DH easier. He lived two more months after our move. We had been married for 55 years.

Later, my present DH and I found each other (that’s another tale :D). He lived in Arkansas. That is why I am now here in Arkansas, so lonely for the North West and my family I could cry! I stay because this is now my home, where my DH of almost 6 years lives. I stay because my health (at age 79) is in gradual decline and I wouldn’t even have the strength to think about selling the property and relocating.

My youngest son lives on the other side of the state near the Texas border. My oldest daughter lives near Klamath Falls, Oregon, and my oldest son lives near Tulsa, OK. The rest live yet in Spokane. My grown granddaughter, whom we had custody of for a while, is out there, somewhere. Where, I don’t know. She has had a rough life. My heart aches for her.

Now, perhaps, you understand why this photo challenge is so important to me. I may not keep up as much as I would like, but I do try.

I have 7 grandchildren, one great-grandchild and one step great-grandchild. I guess you could say that when it comes to “going forth and multiplying” – I have done my part! :D]

PhotoShop Elements 5.0 Cannon PowerShot SD 1200 IS

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