Tag Archives: education

Calm Determination

This has been an odd week weather-wise and the heavy-soggy-blustery nature of it all finally took a bit of a break today. I feel rather relieved since I don’t sleep well when it feels as if the house is going to lift off the foundations. We’ve had cyclonic bursts of wind hammering the sides of the house along with constant, heavy rain — then it all swirls and hits the exact opposite side of the building. Rain alternates with hail. The temperatures plunge and snow falls then melts. Most unsettling…

The mood of the weather is rather a match to the mood of the world right now — but I choose not to focus on that.

The house has been on the market for two weeks — and now we wait. Oddly, since I am not always known for saintly levels of patience, I am feeling quite calm and purposeful.

Really looking forward to what will be coming in the post in the next few days. I’ve waited and waited until the time was right and the PRODUCT was right size-wise. I no longer enjoy huge honking camera bodies with humongous lenses dangling off the front. They make my wrists and shoulders ache and they’re a pain to worry about because they’re so expensive to replace if damaged or stolen. And with the ever-smaller equipment nowadays, it seems like the right time to downsize before we leave here.

On Sunday I bought a GoPro Hero 4 Session at a 20% off sale. Then I got accessories like hand grips, telescoping mono-pod, foam-cube protectors and the like, and a bike handlebar mount for Mark to try it out. And since this toy-sized video camera is so tiny, it will fit into a purse. It is seriously teeny-tiny — and we noticed that the Tour de France riders were all using them during the last few weeks.

GoProHero4Session

I’m ready to start making videos in addition to doing still photography and my agencies in London and New York have asked if I plan to add that sort of additional artwork to my portfolio since it now sells so well. Even wee burst videos of 2-ish minutes at 8 megapixel clarity seem to do well!

Happy that I will get ANOTHER my-brain-will-never-get-old-and-fuddly learning curve with a new editing program (ask me again how I feel about that statement in a week!) to master.

And other than the %^&*£@! flu that we’ve both picked up from all of the %^&*£@! sick people in Ballarat — life is good!

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Musee des Arts et Metier in Paris – Part 3

In the final part of the visit to the Musee des Arts et Metier in Paris, we’ll look at some of the more industral objects and end with a room setting.

There were some truly wonderful and historical objects in this museum, but the largest percentage of them were enclosed in glass cases for their protection since they are quite valuable and culturally significant to the history of French design. However, since the museum galleries are splendidly well lit, that made it practically impossible to take a picture without some sort of glare or reflection, so I’m sticking to a few last pictures of things that were not encased in glass.

I don’t often share pictures of industrial objects, but they do quite often make me say “Oooo!” out loud. And there’s something quite wonderful about the technology of the early to mid 20th Century that I find especially appealing. Here are two examples.

The first one is a 1910 airplane engine — the inside — the structural elements that hold that set of propellers in place as the power zooms through the engine. I just think it’s gorgeous.

 

Close-up sideview  of 1910 French designed airplane engine.

Close-up sideview of 1910 French designed airplane engine.


 

Then there’s this early sound system for a movie projection set up in a cinema. The French were pioneers in film technology and they were quite early adopters of this new form of entertainment.

 

An early movie theatre sound system.

An early movie theatre sound system.


 

Finally, we were surprised to see just how many schoolchildren, from primary school age through high school age, were in the museum on the weekday that we attended. The museum is a fantastic educational resource for these students to learn about the wonderful inventions through the ages that their fellow Frenchmen have been either involved in or directly responsible for.

 

Students at a lecture inside the newer wing of the Musee des Arts et Metier in Paris.

Students at a lecture inside the newer wing of the Musee des Arts et Metier in Paris.


 

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Musee des Arts et Metiers in Paris – Part Two

In this second part of our visit to the Musee des Arts et Metiers in Paris, today we’ll take a peek at some of the LARGE items that are displayed within the converted medieval priory portion of this extraordinary museum.

Designed to mimic the shape of a bat’s wings, this very early airplane by Clement Ader was designed between 1893 and 1897. The very fragile piece of engineering is suspended from the rather ornate ceiling inside the stairwell.

 

Very early aeroplane (airplane) designed by Clement Ader between 1893-1897

Very early aeroplane (airplane) designed by Clement Ader between 1893-1897


 
Ornate staircase in the Musee des Arts et Metier in Paris.

Ornate staircase in the Musee des Arts et Metier in Paris.


 
The high vaulted ceilings and ornate arches of the old church create the most impressive of the exhibition spaces. It’s quite stunning to walk into this vast area and look up to see several vintage airplaces hanging from the ceiling. On the floor below are old steam engines in a variety of sizes.
 
Planes above, trains below, automobiles in tiered racks on the side.

Planes above, trains below, automobiles in tiered racks on the side.


 
On the side of the large chapel are several levels of metal platforms, reached by stairs, which contain a variety of vintage automobiles — all perched high above the ground floor below. It could be a bit of a challenge for anyone with vertigo!
 
Vintage cars on suspended racks high above the floor below.

Vintage cars on suspended racks high above the floor below.


 
A timeless glimpse into the past.

A timeless glimpse into the past.


 
Hope you have enjoyed a peek at this wonderful museum which should be on everyone’s ‘must see’ list when they visit Paris.

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Beautiful Bouncy Boys in Washington State

Time for some more family frolics — this time in Washington State. We took a wonderful 3 and 1/2 day trip across the country on an Amtrak train — and I will have some images from that trip in an upcoming post. Now we’re in Lakewood, Washington just south of Tacoma visiting with my son Chris, his wife Diane, and their two little bouncy bundles named Ian (aged 5) and Ryan (aged 3).

All of the boys were out front the other day when it was time for Ian to head off to school. Each boy had some quick chats with Mark and then Chris walked Ian down to the bus and went on board with him. Know why? School buses have safety belts now and he was making certain that Ian was buckled in safely!

Stay tuned for more family frolics in the days ahead. As Mark said the other day, “This certainly is a different kind of travel for us.”

 

Mark and Ian chatting before school

Mark and Ian (age 5) chatting before school


 
3 year old Ryan chatting with Mark on a rare & sunny Washington State day.

3 year old Ryan chatting with Mark on a rare & sunny Washington State day.


 
Chris walking Ian down to the school bus before school.

Chris walking Ian down to the school bus before school.


 
Chris on board the school bus making sure that Ian is buckled into his seatbelt

Chris on board the school bus making sure that Ian is buckled into his seatbelt


 

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Day Out At Walden School in Louisville, Kentucky

We are having the most wonderful time visiting with our family in the USA and a particularly wonderful few hours was spent at the Walden School in Louisville, Kentucky where my grandson Johnny is in the 1st grade.

Just have a peek at these classrooms and tell me if you aren’t envious of the children that get to go to school here! It’s a wonderful and nurturing environment that encourages creativity and individuality instead of expecting each child to ‘conform’ to a methodology that might not suit their specific personality or intellect. I am quite pleased that my daughter Jennifer and her husband John are able to send Johnny to this marvelous private school.

We started our visit to the school with a meal in the lunchroom. Walden School actively encourages parents and grandparents to drop in for lunch on ANY day — not just on specific or pre-defined family days. I’ve been suffering from hideous allergy problems since we arrived in the USA due to pollen that is now ‘foreign’ to my body — so that’s why my face and eyes are so puffy in this group shot below taken in Johnny’s school lunchroom.

 

Mark, Deborah, Johnny, and his mother Jennifer having lunch at the Walden School.

Mark, Deborah, Johnny, and his mother Jennifer having lunch at the Walden School.


 
1st Grade classroom at Walden School.

1st Grade classroom at Walden School.


 
The science classroom for the elementary school. Note the 'treehouse' area in both the main classroom and this science room where students can just get away and have some quiet time.

The science classroom for the elementary school. Note the ‘treehouse’ area in both the main classroom and this science room where students can just get away and have some quiet time.


 
Another section of the science room at Walden School.

Another section of the science room at Walden School.


 
Johnny showing the koi pond filled with live fish to Mark.

Johnny showing the koi pond filled with live fish to Mark.


 
A phrase that seems to encapsulate the Walden approach to their students

A phrase that seems to encapsulate the Walden approach to their students


 
Johnny's diorama showing the cheetah that he sculpted out of clay. His accompanying report gave information about cheetahs.

Johnny’s diorama showing the cheetah that he sculpted out of clay. His accompanying report gave information about cheetahs.


 
Johnny walking back to the classroom after lunch.

Johnny walking back to the classroom after lunch.


 
Jennifer and her little man -- Johnny.

Jennifer and her little man — Johnny.


 

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©Deborah Harmes and ©A Wanderful Life
Please respect the words and images on this page.
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