Many of you have asked where in the world I've been.

All I know is that after 7 plus years of blogging and a different lappy, which I don’t like, I seem to have lost my blogging fervor.

Someday, when you least expect it, I will post again.

For those of you still waiting I say thank you.

Meanwhile, I am rather prolific on twitter. Find me: @KeethaB
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The Eclectic Company - Waitin' on a New Adventure!!
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Tuesday, June 30, 2009

My Bags Are Packed - - -


(Well kinda)

I'm ready to go!!! (almost)

4 am tomorrow, dad and I are headed to Wisconsin. He has people he wants to see and places he wants to visit. So - - - since I'm "free" (more or less) for the summer, I'm going with him.

Lappy goes.

Digi-cam goes.

The hotels we'll be staying in have free wi-fi. (So there, Mr. Marriott)

You won't even know I'm gone - - - because I WON'T be gone from blogland.


Sunday, June 28, 2009

Pig Latin Prose


For all my bloggy buddies who want to see the Pig Latin Prose, please click here, then scroll down to the second post on the page.

This Ig-pay Atin-Lay rose-pay was written by my FORMER blogging buddy, Anon (guess which one is she in the above picture) who has since moved on to Facebook and deserted blogland.

She was FUNNY!!!! She had the MOST creative ways of showing herself and her children in anonymous poses of anyone I've ever known in blogland. Go ahead and browse around a bit, even though she no longer blogs, her anonymous creations are all still there.


Saturday, June 27, 2009

Sunday Rerun - She was WRONG!!


I get sooooo excited about our bloggy Sunday reruns!!! Thanks so much to Chari over at Happy to Design for hosting Sunday Favorites.

This week I have jazzed my rerun up a bit by adding some photos - - - very important photos- - - which I offer as my EVIDENCE that the "she" in my post was all wrong!

"No One Cares What You Ate For Lunch"
First posted on 12/05/06

Is, I believe, the title of a book written by a woman I heard being interviewed on NPR the other morning. The purpose of the book was to instruct people on how to make an interesting blog.

It sounded to me that she thought talking about food was boring.

I disagree. I enjoy TALKING about,

READING about,

And SEEING photos of food on blogs.

I think Miss "NPRauthor-interviewee" used her blog as an online department store of unusual goods and services. I think THAT is boring!

I guess my little nonpoint here is this - - - - the blogs I like are the ones where people share random things from their real lives, things like visits to pumpkin patches, chocolate desserts, children and their antics, fun quotes, frog princes, pies in the face, football, name the baby contests, choose the Christmas picture contests,Pig Latin essays, and funny anecdotes. I really don't want to spend my free time perusing someone's sales pitch.

And - - - - - for all who are wondering, and even for those who are not, I had leftovers for lunch.


All That SEX Going on in Your Garden!!!


Science All Around Us - Episode II
(AKA Science Moments With Miss Keetha)

(photo from www dot cactusjungle dot com)

(photo from galerrainwater dot com)

Who among us can resist photos of vibrant blooms beaded with morning dew?

Who among us doesn't love to receive a fragrant bouquet of freshly cut flowers, or even a simple nosegay. (Boy, THAT term proves I'm vintage, doesn't it???)

Well, those flowers are all about SEX going on in our gardens!!!!

Flowers are all about sexual reproduction of angiosperms, flower producing plants. Even the color and scent of the flower is designed to attract pollinators. Plants that you don't normally associate with "flowers" may very well have them.

Aside - there are plants which do not use flowers to reproduce, but use cones instead. Those plants are called gymnosperms. Pines, junipers, ginkgos, and cycads belong to that group. Everything else - - - including grass - - - uses flowers to reproduce.

(diagram from grandpacliff dot com)

I'm sure we all remember this from our 7th Grade Life Science class - - - but a little refresher course never hurt anyone, and besides, since I'm doing the refreshing and since I LOVE this garden sex - - - I get to choose what to post. :-)

Above is a labeled diagram of a "generic" flower and its parts. This one happens to contain both male and female reproductive parts, as do many flowers. This is not the case with ALL plant species. Some species have separate sexes - - - males and females on separate plants.

Please use the above diagram to find these parts as I talk about them.

The entire male organ in the flower is called the STAMEN. I tell my students that the "men" ending will help them remember that it is the MALE portion. It is made up of a slender supportive stalk called the filament and a "fuzzy" rounded or oblong tip called the anther. The anther is the important part because it produces pollen grains which contain the male gametes, or sex cells, called sperm.

The next time you breathe deeply of a lovely bouquet, and come away with a nose and chin full of pollen, I'm SURE you will be delighted to realize that you now have a face covered in flower sperm. My students LOVE it when I tell them that. But - - - it's true.

The entire female organ in the flower is called the pistil. I HATE it when game show contestants buzz in and say the male flower part is called a pistil. What ARE they thinkin'???? The pistil is shaped like a vase made up of three parts: a sticky widened top called the stigma, a long slender neck called the style, and a broad, rounded base called the ovary. The ovary is the important functioning part as it contains the female gametes, the ova or eggs.

Now for the SEX part. The pollen containing the sperm has to get to the sticky stigma of a pistil. This process is called pollination. Pollination needs a bit of "help" from the outside world since the anther and the stigma are apart from each other. Wind, gravity, insects, humming birds, and even YOU can help with this process. Anything that moves pollen can become a pollinator.

Once the pollen has landed on the sticky stigma, it begins to grow a pollen tube down through the style to the ovary where it connects to an ovum (egg). This pollen tube literally digests away the "flesh" of the style as it grows. The sperm in the pollen grain can then fertilize (unite with) the egg.

Once fertilized, the egg will develop into a seed. The ovary around the developing seeds will mature into a fruit. This means that anything, other than a cone, that contains seeds is biologically a fruit!!!! So, the next time you eat peas, corn, tomatoes, or cucumbers, remember they are FRUITS.

So now you know - - - your beautiful garden is really a sexual hot bed!!!!

Hope you enjoyed these "Moments With Miss Keetha" and that you will tune in again next time, when maybe we'll talk about how you help with seed dispersal, or then again maybe not - - -


Friday, June 26, 2009

It's 10:08 PM And - - -


We've got AC!!!!!

OUR AC is all tweaked!!!
Thank you Cain's Heating and Cooling!!!


And I Thought Losing our Internet was Horrible - - -


Artwork by Scott Fattig
Taken from stock illustrations

Our central air went kaput last evening, and today I did quite a bit of the above.

I would have been better off to follow little Miss Kaeleigh's lead and do THIS!!

Sweatin' over here in the north central midwest!!!!


Thursday, June 25, 2009

Friday's Favorites - Mack and Vera


Friday's Favorite Family Foto
Sponsored by Deborah at "Pictures, Pots, Pens"

These are my paternal grandparents, Warren McClellan and Vera Mae Heavilin.

They raised thirteen children to adulthood - - - right through the depression - - - right here in Marion. I am the oldest child of their ninth child.

Grandpa was a "jack of all trades" with major carpentry skills. However, no work was beneath his dignity.

Once, he was given a large truck load of cleaned chicken feathers. Dad and some of his siblings packaged these feathers up in sacks and took them door to door selling them, 15 cents for enough to fill one pillow, 25 cents for enough to fill two. It was hard times - - - many ladies bought the feathers.

When they had "saturated" the market in their neighborhood, they moved over to a small neighboring town. One lady bought enough feathers for two pillows and was ECSTATIC to get them, thinking them a very THRIFTY buy. That evening she proudly showed her purchase to her husband saying, "Look what I bought from those nice Heavilin boys!"

Her hubby said, "You bought those from the Heavilin boys? I GAVE those feathers to their father!!!

As you can imagine, Grandma had her hands full raising thirteen children. Each child had specific assigned chores - - - had to do it that way to survive I imagine!!!

Grandma RAISED thirteen children, but she had FIFTEEN babies. Two of her precious little ones only survived a few days or weeks. She told me once about the pain and sorrow of losing the second child.

She said she just couldn't go on. She just couldn't get past the loss. She went to bed and the older girls took over running the house. She said she stayed in that bed for several weeks in deep despair.

At the end of that time, one evening while the family was sitting down at the large oval dining room table for supper, Grandpa came in and gently scooped grandma up in his arms. He said, "Vera, we have corn to hoe." (No, they weren't farmers - - - it was an expression that there was work to be done and life must go on.)

You know what? Grandma got up and resumed her life. That's what you did. There was no such thing as counseling. You just got up and went back to hoeing your corn.

Bye-Bye Library!!!!


Meet Jacob.
He's my new BEST FRIEND of the day
Because he made my internet blues go away!!!

So good-bye Yahoo DSL
And good-bye landline phone.
Hello new gadget, all my own!!!

Isn't she little?
And isn't she cute
Don't you just love her snazzy white suit?

Now take a quick glance
At her slender profile - - -
She gets me online in less than a while!!!

She goes where I go
And works when I want
She's charming and kind and simply gallant.

Now to conclude this little tale
I'm happy with Miss Gadget A LOT
So ha ha to you, Mr. Marriott!!!


Here I Sit - - -


Bloggin' at the Library

Only in this picture I was on vacation in the Hayward Library and now I'm home in our own city library.

Why, you might ask??

Simple - - - our home internet has died and I'm too addicted to blogging to give it up even temporarily. So, here I sit. Thank goodness I have lappy!!!

However, even with two trips/day to the library, I may NOT be able to keep up with each and every one of your new posts - - - - but I'll give it the good old college try!!!


Thrifty Vintage Thingies Thursday - THONGS

It's THAT time again!!!!
Vintage Thingies Thursday over at Coloradolady and Thrifty Thursday at Bloggeritaville.

Be sure you click on both of the above icons or links to check out what everyone else is posting.

Today I am ACTUALLY more thrifty than vintagie. Can you believe it, Leigh????

Just look what I got for $3 yesterday:

Oh they are so bright and full of color and 70's flowers and BLING on the straps - - - it was love at first sight!!!

Then I put them on my little feet - - - with my OTHER thrifty find, a $10 pedicure from the Beauty School, and VOILA!!! That's double thrift in one post.

What about the VINTAGE part you ask?

Well folks - - - my feet ARE vintage. Oh yes they are - - - they are 55 years old and I believe 50 qualifies something to be an antique, so I ARE ONE!!!! :-)

AND, if that isn't vintage enough, I'm referring to these brand new flip-flops by their very vintage 50's and 60's name of THONGS.

No - - - you will NOT EVER catch me wearing the OTHER kind of thong. Don't EVEN bother to picture it in your mind's eye - - - - Don't go there - - - it's UGLY. :-)


Wednesday, June 24, 2009

They're Taking Over Our Town


I realize this is one of the more serious posts that I've ever done. If you aren't up to "deep thinking" yet today, I will understand if you just click away to another blog - - -

Invasion of the Alien life-forms (?)!!!

Some photography-skills-challenged person took this photo. (Uh - - - that would be ME)


Tuesday, June 23, 2009

A Lady With Wonderful Vision


This post is coming to you "live from the Marion Public Library" where lappy and I are enjoying air conditioned comfort - - - we are having internet woes at home. Lappy is good, but he isn't THAT good!!! Even he cannot compensate for lack of wi-fi.

This is my cousin, Sally Barker, holding one of her blind-friendly masterpieces, "Red Poppy" by Georgia O'Keeffe.

Sally is a lady with a vision - - - and she isn't the kind to easily let go of it.

Sally's vision is to do something to allow blind people to "see" art. Just imagine being blind and trying to "see" a flat picture with your hands - - - if, that is, any art museum or exhibit would even let you touch it. All you would feel is a flat canvas, perhaps a few brush strokes.

There would be no way to tell color, shape, or texture. No way to "see" the art.

Sally is DOING something about this.

She has developed the "Barker Code" for turning artwork into hand friendly masterpieces for the blind to enjoy. Her code uses a specific fabric type for each color, so there will be a difference in color texture. But she doesn't stop there. She takes artwork and turns it into a quilted, textured, Barker Coded masterpiece.

So far she has met with much skepticism like, "Well, the blind can't picture colors anyway"

She has NOT let this skepticism stop her. Instead, she is doing something to help. She has done A LOT to help. She has already transformed many pieces of art into her code, and she takes them to show to blind people where ever she can find them.

This is a close up of a Braille "B" which she puts in the upper left hand corner of each of her pieces to identify that it is made according to the Barker Code. Do you see the three little black puffy paint dots? That's it - - - the Braille "B" for the Barker Code.

This is what the back side of one of her pieces looks like. You can see all the hand quilting which will bring shape and definition to the front side of the piece.

Between the backing and the front she puts padding and other texture enhancers. Above you see a piece of plastic craft card with coarse threads drawn through it. She put this (in the picture below) behind the brown to simulate the rough texture of the dry earth.

"Christina's World"
Andrew Wyeth

In each of the following pictures, the copy of the original art is placed ABOVE Sally's Barker Code replica.

I think you will find them amazing!

"The Scream"
by Edvard Munch

"Starry Night"
by Vincent Van Gogh

by Dante Gabriel Rossetti

"Icarus Fallen"
by Henri Matisse

"The Flower Carrier"
by Diego Rivera

If you are a quilter (or anyone else) who would like to help Sally turn art into the Barker Code, or if you know of a group of blind who would love to "see" her work, Sally would be thrilled if you contact her.

Sally's e-mail: larrysally at gmail dot com
Sally's web page
On Facebook - Sarah E. Barker, Dayton, Ohio

Now this fun little personal aside to this story: We are a LARGE family. My dad and Sally's dad were brothers, two of 13 Heavilin siblings raised right here in Marion. We have now spread all over the globe.

I have only ever seen Sally's son, Bart, at family gatherings. UNTIL THIS EVENING as I was entering the Marion Library. A young man in the parking lot was watching me get out of my car, he called across to me and said: "Are you a Heavilin??? I'm Bart Barker."

Go figure!!! The very day I decide to make Sally's post, I see her son, my first cousin once removed, in the library parking lot!!!! He was here, just for the day, from North Carolina doing genealogy research on our family.


Monday, June 22, 2009

It's My Blog I Can Post What I Wanna

AKA Father's Day Fun in the Sun

I just posted family pictures on Saturday, and maybe I'm over doing it just a bit showing them again today - - - but hey, it's my blog so I think I can post what I wanna!!!

We spent Father's Day afternoon here:

Not a Florida beach,

But sun, sand, and water none the less.
This is "Little Turtle Beach"
On the Huntington Reservoir.

Greg, Kyle and I arrived first and set up our "stuff." The table was already there, we did NOT drag a heavy concrete table from home - - -

We didn't bring the umbrella base, and since there was no hole in the table to support an umbrella, we did have a few moments of scratching our heads trying to figure out just how to support it.

Greg used his American ingenuity and VOILA - - - a lovely spot of shade to protect us from the burning rays.

After everyone else arrived with their "stuff" in tow - - - this is how our little "oasis" looked.

I was pretty much the guardian of the "stuff" all afternoon. Had you happened by, you would have seen me sitting in that red chair surrounded by our "stuff."

At one point little Kaeleigh came up to me and said: "Kamma, why do you have so much stuff?"

Out of the mouths of babes.

Here's how we spent our afternoon:


There was a long walk between the parking lot
And our "oasis."
Yep - - - we had to walk back and forth
Hauling all that "stuff."
This is Kyle and Greg going after another load.

We had to moor the boats down the beach away
From the swimming zone,
Then we had to walk back and forth.
This is Kelly (of all my infamous Kelly stories)
Cathy, Kelly's girlfriend, and Kyle.

Better picture of Kyle

Here come Papoo and Mackinley
Can you tell how hard Mackinley's little legs are pumping
Just to keep up with Papoo???

Ahhhh - - - that's better Papoo,
Wait for me!!!


Uncle Kyle supervising Kaeleigh and Mackinley.
Kaeleigh is a little fish
And Mackinley floats well in a life jacket!

Group Swim
Keri, Piper, Papoo, Mackinley, and Kaeleigh


All that swimming and walking made us tired.

Piper was worn out
Because naturally, we made HER
Tote all that stuff to and from the cars!

Kaeleigh enjoying a few moments in the shade.

You'd think an emergency room PA would have enough
Sense to rest in the shade, wouldn't you????


All that fun in the sun made us thirsty.


It made us hungry too!


Kelly in his boat.

Kelly and his first mate


Captain Papoo at the helm of his boat

Piper's first boat ride

Piper and mommy Keri

Papoo's first mate, Mackinley

Kamma and Kaeleigh enjoying the ride