Monday, September 30, 2013

Annabelle at International Street Fair


This month Annabelle belly danced with her fellow students of Aziza of Birmingham at the Birmingham International Street Fair. Check out her performance video below.  Just before dancing she had expressed an interest in dancing professionally, and after the dance she was approached by the owner of Chez Lulu (one of the best restaurants in Birmingham) and asked to perform. She now has a running gig at Chez Lulu.



Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Folk School Weekend


I spent the past weekend being an artist in residence at the Alabama Folk School at Camp McDowell near Jasper, AL. The above shot is from one of my hikes on the property, into a deep and mossy canyon. Camp McDowell is situated in the Bankhead National Forest, one of my favorite hiking destinations, and, honestly, one of the most beautiful forests in the world.


As an artist in residence, my job was to paint all day. This was my station, and looked out a large window over the forest. Heaven!


An afternoon hike in the forest led to this amazing overhang.


Clear Creek in the morning.


An evening concert by some of the music instructors. This weekend the focus was on acoustic guitar.


The outdoor shop where one of the instructors taught blacksmithing.


I'm on the board of the folk school, and we had an annual meeting after the weekend workshops ended. It's the only board meeting where members sit in rocking chairs on a porch and coon hounds (more than one!) come to visit. 


That evening the board convened at the home of Mark and Maggie, the directors of Camp McDowell. These board members are all well-known old-time and bluegrass musicians.


Mark and Maggie, and the yummy kabobs they cooked up.

Before coming home I took a morning hike in the forest again. 


I wish photos did this magical place justice. 



Thursday, September 19, 2013

Cherokee National Forest Vacation




I'm finally posting our fishing and hiking vacation picks from the weekend of September 7th and 8th.
Above is Bald River Falls, near where we camped on the Tellico River in Tennesee's Cherokee National Forest. 



A view from the Cherohala Skyway, a 40 mile highway leading over the mountains from Tellico Plains, TN to Robbinsville, NC. The views are spectacular, and motorcycle enthusiasts love the many curves.



Scott fished all day, every day on the Tellico River.



I hiked all day, every day in the woods.


I took a million photos of tree trunks. I have started a tree trunk blog. More info later.


My favorite woods I've ever hiked in is the Joyce Kilmer Wilderness. It's never been logged and has 400 year old trees. It's like a fairytale forest. 



Another view from the Skyway.


I took a 3 mile hike around Indian Boundary Lake.


Our motel (nicknamed The Deliverance Hotel) sat right along the Tellico River. If the room weren't so stinky we would have enjoyed the river smells a lot more. We were in the room very little, so we didn't mind terribly. There are few accommodations back in this country.


Thursday, September 5, 2013

This Week's Blooms

Impatiens

Photography weakness aside, this is a small sampling of what's blooming in our yard now. 


Tithlonia

Mexican Petunia

Dahlia


Canna


Sedum