Saturday, July 30, 2016

Edward Gorey and his cats

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The Cape Escape of 2016 has drawn to a close. The weather was ideal and I rate the vacation as a success since I avoided being sunburned or eaten by a Great White (multiple sightings).

One new venue for us was the Edward Gorey House in Yarmouth Port. I've always been a huge fan of his illustrations and probably scarred my children for life by reading them his Gashlycrumb Tinies .

It was obvious that Gorey had a great love of cats and bats as seen in his work and as described on the museum's website:


In 1979 Edward Gorey purchased the 200 year-old sea captain’s home at 8 Strawberry Lane on the Yarmouth Port Common, Cape Cod, Massachusetts. After his death in 2000 the house became a museum, dedicated to Gorey’s life and work and his devotion to animal welfare. The house and its annual Gorey exhibits are open to the public from April through December.
OUR MISSIONThe Edward Gorey House celebrates and preserves the life and works of Edward Gorey, an American author, illustrator, playwright, set and costume designer. In honor of his legacy, The House, owned and lived in by Gorey himself, displays his diverse and extraordinary talents and reflects his distinct personality. The House also honors Gorey's passion and concern for animals, raising awareness about local and national animal welfare issues. As a dedicated commemoration to Gorey, the House strives to educate and inspire its visitors, offering a unique introduction to Edward Gorey, the artist and person.
The Edward Gorey House is indebted to the generosity of the Highland Street Foundation who purchased the House in 2002 and enabled the museum to be established. The Highland Street Foundation is committed to addressing the needs and concerns of families throughout Massachusetts and California in areas of education, housing, mentoring and the arts. They have contributed more than $135 Million dollars to many note-worthy non-profit organizations, among them, the Edward Gorey House. Visit for more info.
ANIMAL WELFAREAs reflected through his works and his generosity to various animal welfare organizations, Edward Gorey was a great advocate of animals, large and small, all over the world. Through the Edward Gorey Charitable Trust, numerous animal welfare organizations receive funding. 

Front door of the museum

I loved this photo and the quote below

Friday, July 22, 2016

MEGA Sports Camp 2016

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The New Ipswich Congregational Church is holding a MEGA Sports Camp from July 6 - August 17 on the Church Grounds, We attended the Wednesday Barbeque that is open to the public which is held on the newly renovated picnic grounds.

Pastor Donahue's son grills burgers and hot dogs

Gail and Nancy

NIPD helped with some coaching

Pastor Bill Donahue (left)

A nice chat with Bruce

Volleyball was one of the sports activities


Karyn gives the kids a pep talk before the coaching sessions

Basketball Coach


Crafts were another option for the children
A moment for Pokemon Go

An enthusiastic group played soccer in Woody's field adjacent to the church


NIPD coaching


Thursday, July 21, 2016

Sphex and Gooseneck Loosestrife

Good Morning,

I grow Gooseneck Loosestrife (Lysimachia clethroides) to fill in hilly areas that I have no desire to weed or mow. It is an invasive plant but a great filler and it is a magnet for bees, butterflies and members of the digger wasp genus (Sphex).

These frightening looking wasps sting their prey to paralyze them and bury them alive in a nest after laying eggs in their bodies. The developing larvae feed on the paralyzed prey and eventually burst out. It is a life style that was immortalized in the film Alien.

As frightening as they look they were not aggressive and were much more interested in the flowers than the person photographing them.

Sphex pensylvanicus - Great Black Wasp
The flowers also attract a number of butterflies
Plenty of room for a bee and wasp



Unknown fly variety

A Great Golden Digger peeks out over a blossom
Sphex ichneumoneus

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Image Colorization with Deep Learning

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Can computers learn to see?  Yes they can, face recognition technology is everywhere on the internet. Imagining colors is a bit more difficult but a company named Algorithmia has an application which does a credible job. It uses what they call "deep learning" to gather information from millions of photographs to "imagine" how a black and white photo might appear in color.

"We're excited to introduce cloud hosted deep learning models on Algorithmia. TheColorful Image Colorization microservice is a computer vision algorithm trained on a million images from the Imagenet dataset.
This microservice is an implementation of the Colorful Image Colorization algorithm created by Richard Zhang, Phillip Isola, and Alexei A. Efros..
Let us know what you think @Algorithmia or by email."  - Website Intro

Traditionally black and white photos were hand colored. This is one of my favorite photo of my mom reading with two friends. It was taken in the early 1920s.

Computer colorized photo taken of an antique plate in Smithville, NH. It did a credible job except for the fencing on the lower left side. I assume the algorithm "knew" where the sky was and the general shape of foliage.

However I don't think does a very credible job with human subjects. In this photo I was wearing a blue denim shirt which I believe would be fairly easy to identify.

You can try this software for yourself by clicking on this demo link.

Monday, July 18, 2016

Pickity Place

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Good Morning,

We had nice lunch at Pickity Place on Sunday in Mason, NH. I spent some time exploring the gardens which are in full bloom.

July Menu

Dip - St. Tropez Garlic 
Soup - Chilled Cantaloupe with Basil 
Salad - Red, White and Blue Potato 
Bread - Italian Rustic Loaf 

Entrée - Braised Beef Cuscino with Tomato, Pepper Jam 
— or —
Entrée - Ratatouille over Creamy Risotto 

Side - Freshest Available 
Dessert - Key Lime Pie with Spiced Rum Bananas 

Pickity Place as seen in the illustration of "Little Red Riding Hood" by Elizabeth Orton Jones

Witches Garden features medicinal herbs

In the witches garden I spotted what may or may not be poison hemlock

Grandma, what big eyes you have

Inside the drying shed

What "thyme" is it? A garden of different types of thyme

Gulf fritillary butterflies on Bee Balm

Not so scary scarecrow


Clematis are in the buttercup family

Sunday, July 17, 2016

New Ipswich Farmer's Market

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A community run market providing locally grown herbs,vegetables & fruits, locally raised and produced meats, eggs & handmade crafts, breads & maple syrup.

New Ipswich Farmer's Market
Something for folks young and old

Katherine Schimke of Hippie Hollow Recordings was playing some tunes on a Banjo Uke
Music should be a part of every Farmer's Market

Don't like Trump or Hillary? There is always Vermin Supreme.

Buy them or pick your own from Smith's Blueberries in New Ipswich, NH

Buy local honey, it is better than the stuff from China

Isn't this nice?


High octane coffee

More pottery

Tasty relish

Free samples, just like Costco