Saturday, July 31, 2010

Hawk in the front yard

hawk in the front yard, originally uploaded by jahansell.

This isn't a great photo - nothing like the bird pictures my colleague, Abraham Lincoln (really) takes over at Brookville (OH) Daily Photo. But it was a cool moment - this bird fell out of the sky into the tree (it seemed to have something in its talons and a bunch of small birds were chasing it). It dropped down onto the front walk for a few moment - a red tailed hawk on the sidewalk! -- but by the time my quick-footed children appeared with the camera it was back in the tree.

Tomorrow is worldwide City Daily Photo theme day - stand by for a fascinating tour around the world!

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Cornflower blue

country lane

With Theme Day coming up, maybe I should save this photo - the blue would fit right in with the Bright Colors theme. The daylillies are over, the cornflowers almost so, the farm stands are overflowing with corn and tomatoes - is it just me or is this summer galloping by?

Wednesday, July 28, 2010


crossfields2, originally uploaded by jahansell.

Another heavenly corner of Sharon - only 5 minutes from town and you feel like you're in paradise!

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

For lease

for lease, originally uploaded by jahansell.

Oh dear.

I wonder if the grocery hadn't gone out, if they'd have made it, or if it's just really hard to make a laundromat work (cost of water/electricity, etc.) Not a lot of people probably need it around here, but those who do, REALLY do. There have been three owners, that I know of, in the last few years - will someone else come forward? (And if not, how will I clean my comforter?)

Saturday, July 24, 2010

A peaceful afternoon

I'm spending the afternoon helping out in Darren Winston's wonderful book shop so he can take his kids to Lime Rock. Stop by and say hi -- I'm here til 4. Unfortunately I won't get to the Soapbox Derby though.

- Posted using BlogPress from
my iPhone

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Last post of vacation

Soon, I'll be home and posting fresh photos of Sharon...soon I hope to bring you the first-ever shot of Sharon Farm Market...it won't be long now!

(But first I'll post a shot of the humble old buggy that took my family on a 2,000 mile round trip, that 15 year old, once-proud Subaru, that now has over 230,000 miles on it and, I hope, going strong!) It was once famous in three counties for the profusion of stickers on its windows, but a razor blade and an hours' hard work finally restored it to a bit of anonymity once again. If you want your car to last as long as mine, go see Alex at Motorworks in Sharon - he gives my mom-car the same loving attention as the cool vintage rides he's always tinkering with in his back room!)

Wednesday, July 21, 2010


Came home from vacation to find this... Lines down, power out, and much worse all around Sharon. - Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Monday, July 19, 2010

Ode to local busineses

summer treats
As I've been rereading posts from summers past, to keep the blog going while I'm on vacation (only a few more days, alas!) I decided repost this in its entirety. Usually my posts are short and to the point, but apparently on this day in July 2008, I was moved to write an entire essay! Having just had a very negative experience wit ha business owner (not local - from Westchester!) I feel even more strongly about the sentiments expressed here.

It's high summer, and I think we're going through 2 quarts of blueberries a day right now - bought either from Paley's, or Trotta's, or a fruit stand over near Rhinebeck. And s'mores over the grill - it's not quite a campfire but the s' mores taste almost as good! I love eating outside at the beach - fewer dishes to do, the kitchen doesn't heat up (and today, when it's going to be 95 degrees and humid, that's a help) and you always run into someone you know and can share your burgers or berries with them.

I've been musing on the nature of small businesses - both the shops and the services -- lately. They are essential to a town, even one as small as ours, and they keep us going, make it possible to live here. If your sink won't run, or your car breaks down, you need someone to call. Almost every experience I've had with the small businesses in Sharon and environs over the last ten years has been positive - people take pride in their work, do their utmost to deliver quality product and services to please the customer, bend over backwards to make it right if there's a problem, and charge fairly - a living wage for themselves, certainly, but within reason.

But every once and a while a mutter goes around among ones' acquaintances about someone who doesn't live up to that standard - perhaps an employee with a chip on their shoulder, who seems to delight in making ones' experience more difficult, or perhaps a shop owner or service person who takes advantage of someone's vulnerability, or who cuts corners. (Or so it seems from the customer's point of view, because of course there's two sides to every story!) And people love to talk, don't they - they love to complain to anyone who will listen. So it's a risk I take whenever I mention a business - that someone who feels aggrieved will use the comment section to broadcast their discontent in a public forum.

So is that a good thing or a bad thing? Of course one very rarely sees business owners doing the same thing (though maybe they do in private): that is, complaining about that annoying customer who always changes her mind after the work is half-done, who keeps running back to get one more thing, who brings her screaming children into the shop and lets them wreak havoc... turnabout may be fair play, but business owners couldn't do that or they'd lose their livelihood!

On the other hand, it could be useful for a business person to find out what perceptions are out there in the community about them - it might assist them in improving in some area or other, hopefully with the result of increasing their business.

After all, business is about two things: a fair exchange of product or service for money (or barter, as I've happily begun to find out) and, equally important, a relationship. It doesn' t matter if Sam Walton is a nice guy - you're going to shop at your neighborhood Wal-Mart anyway. But in Sharon, CT, or anywhere similar, the smile and greeting by name and "how's your mom doing, I heard she was ill?" you get from the shop owner builds unbreakable loyalty and it's what makes life here so pleasant.

So I give a toast of s'mores and berries to the people who keep us all going - they sell the food and the shoes and the wine, they fix the cars and the sinks and the garden walls, their names are scribbled on lists posted on fridges all over town as the person to call when in need. You make Sharon more than just lovely landscapes - you make it a place to live for a lifetime.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

the back route

Sharon St. RD
I'm still on vacation for a few more days, but when I return I'll continue prowling the back roads, looking for something old, something new. I really want to do a series of portraits of people at work in Sharon - anyone want to be my first volunteer?

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Old and new

millerton ny 1
In Millerton, you can get a soy chai latte and a panini, then head next door for a Pendleton sweater, and some ammo. All in a pleasant country afternoon.

Friday, July 16, 2010

Which way did he go?

Not that you're ever likely to leave, once you're here, but in case you were wondering where to go next, I'd say any way is fine - west to Millerton, north to Lakeville, East to falls Village - you can't go wrong.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Baseball bat.

big zuke
If your zucchini look like this, you've waited too long to harvest! I've been told you can cook these up real good. I have no doubt that's true, but I'll stick with the little ones, myself.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010


grey barn grey day
July is the month of brilliant colors - gaudy green, and all the crazy oranges and purples of the garden. But every once in a while our eyes have a day of rest, when all is grey.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

The Corn is as high as

An elephant's eye..
I'm looking forward to seeing Oklahoma! at Tri-Arts in a few weeks. Somehow I've lived 45 years without ever seeing it live on stage, and I'm not sure I ever sat through the whole movie. But I do love The Surry with the Fringe on Top!

Monday, July 12, 2010

Horizon line

tree horizon
I'm still on vacation, in the land of the stately pine, and so you are enjoying the greatest hits of Julys past.

Sunday, July 11, 2010


It's a truism in photography that early morning and twilight are the best times to take pictures. Who am I to argue?

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Atop Twin Oaks Field

You've seen the oaks from the road, but have you ever climbed the hill to see the world from their point of view? early morning is best, when the grass is wet and the hills are misty.

Friday, July 09, 2010

Berry picking

The strawberries are over...the raspberries are small (due to dry weather) but intensely sweet, and the blueberries are just starting. Ellsworth Hill Farm in Sharon has 'em all.

Thursday, July 08, 2010


It's hot and sticky and the horses aren't happy.
Enjoy these photos from the Sharon Daily Photo July archives - I'll be back in a few weeks.

Wednesday, July 07, 2010

On vacation for two weeks

While I'm away, I'll post some of my greatest hits from Julys past.  It's haying season! When I come back, perhaps I'll show some photographs of my lovely state of origin, Michigan.

Tuesday, July 06, 2010


vine, originally uploaded by jahansell.

It's cheating the purpose of this blog to just post pictures of flowers from my garden - I'm letting my readers down if it's just about me instead of about Sharon. But I hope you don't mind too much - sometimes one perfect flower is just...perfect!

Saturday, July 03, 2010

14th Colony

14thcolony, originally uploaded by jahansell.
The newest art happening in the area is the 14th Colony collective, which has been showing its members' work at the former David Gavin Salon in Millerton. They will be having monthly openings, and are including Salisbury and Sharon in their future plans. I may have some photos from this blog in the Sharon show - any favorites you'd like to see printed and framed in real life?

Friday, July 02, 2010


between the lions

I had the opportunity to visit Wethersfield, the fantastic Stillman estate in Amenia, last week. I'm reposting pictures I took a few years ago, as this time I didn't have my camera along.  Here are two more.

Thursday, July 01, 2010

Monthly Theme Day for July: Reflections

mudge pond

Every month, the extended City Daily Photo community - a worldwide collection of hundreds of indviduals in cities large and small, famous and not so much, chooses a theme - this month it's reflections.  Take a trip around the world ...Click here to view thumbnails for all participants