Category Archives: Did you know?

The Clothesline Project

Did you know?

My wise old grandmother taught me not to air my dirty clothes in public. So imagine my surprise when I’m walking around the campus of the University of San Diego, a Catholic university, and see two clotheslines full of laundry in front of the Joan B. Kroc Institute for Peace and Justice. Here’s one of them:

The Clothesline Project

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

The Clothesline ProjectI noticed writing on the shirts so I went over to have a closer look and discovered that it was “The Clothesline Project,” a program started in Massachusetts in 1990 to address the issue of violence against women.

According to sources, “The Clothesline Project is a vehicle for women affected by violence and those that love them to express their emotions by decorating a shirt.”

“The shirts on the clotheslines give testimony to the problem of violence against women and serve as a call to put an end to the silence around sexual assault.”

The Clothesline Project

The Clothesline Project

The Clothesline Project

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

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Hey, Google! Analyze this!

Did you know?

Google has decided to require (force) web sites to be mobile friendly. I’m not even mobile friendly, so why would my web sites be? Nonetheless…..

Effective April 21, 2015, Google is implementing its new mobile search algorithms. Thus, if your web site is not mobile friendly by then, it might not show up in Google searches, which could affect you if you rely on your web site to help provide income, as I do.

Fortunately, most WordPress themes are mobile friendly, especially if you got your theme from and are hosted by

If you want to be sure, though, Google provides a mobile friendly analyzer. Use it now so that if your web site is not mobile friendly, you can make changes before April 21.

Here is the analyzer:

Google Mobile Friendly Analyzer

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

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My six favorite San Diego vista points

Out & About

The following are my six favorite places from which to view San Diego:

San Diego Sky Tours

San Diego Sky Tours takes you on a 20-minute flight over downtown San Diego, Petco Park (home of the San Diego Padres), Qualcomm Stadium (home of the San Diego Chargers), Sports Arena (home of the Los Angeles Clippers when they were the San Diego Clippers), SeaWorld, Coronado Bridge, Hotel Del Coronado, beaches, San Diego River, and more! Take a ride in a biplane, a tour aircraft, or a helicopter. Nothing quite like it. Rates start at $124.

Remember, too, that if you fly into San Diego, sit on the left side of the airplane. The view of downtown San Diego as you are coming in for the landing is not to be missed!

Downtown San Diego from San Diego Sky Tours

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Mount Soledad

A very popular tourist vista because it’s just minutes north of downtown San Diego, and downtown La Jolla, one of the area’s best tourist venues, is on the north side.

Mount Soledad rises about 823 feet above the coastline. There is a huge cross and Veterans Memorial at the top. On a clear day you can see Tijuana, Los Angeles, and probably Tokyo!

View from Mount Soledad

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Mount Helix

The most popular vista point in East San Diego County. Mount Helix rises 1,365 feet above sea level. It’s about 14 miles inland but you can see the ocean on a clear day. There is am amphitheater and large cross at the top. Along with Easter Sunrise Service, there are usually theater presentations during the summer. Right now the only thing I see on the Mount Helix calendar are weddings and Power Yoga.

Mount Helix is my favorite place to see the sun rise.

Sunrise from the top of Mount Helix in La Mesa, California

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Manchester Grand Hyatt Hotel

In downtown San Diego on the harbor front. Comprising two towers, the older one, at 497 feet tall, has a vista point bar at the top. Unfortunately, it is way too small and crowded all the time. Be sure to visit Seaport Village at the foot of the towers.

Downtown San Diego

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

California Tower

The California Tower is 198 feet tall and located in Balboa Park.  While it is not as tall as the other vistas, the views are spectacular.

After having been closed for eighty years, it opened again on January 1, 2015. If you go, and I highly recommend that you do, make reservations and buy tickets online. They sell out far in advance, and it’s not even Tourist Season yet!

You won’t go to the tippy top because it’s not safe yet, but you won’t be disappointed. Afterwards, enjoy the rest of Balboa Park, including the world-famous San Diego Zoo.

California Tower and San Diego Museum of Man, Balboa Park, San Diego

Gian Panda Gao Gao at the San Diego Zoo

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos


A trip to Coronado has to be on everyone’s list of places to visit while in San Diego. You will travel over the very beautiful Coronado Bridge on your way to see the Hotel del Coronado, one of the most famous hotels in the world; Frank Oz’s house where he wrote much of “The Wizard of Oz”; Coronado Beach, one of the best beaches  in the United States according to those who rank such things; and downtown San Diego from across the harbor. If your budget includes splurging at a restaurant, splurge at Peohe’s.

San Diego-Coronado Bay Bridge

Downtown San Diego from Marriott Coronado Island Resort

Hotel del Coronado

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

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Zoey the Cool (Book) CatZoey the Cool Cat exploring the books

Little Free Libraries in San Diego County

Out & About

Little Free Libraries are a community movement that offers free books housed in small containers to members of the local community. They are also referred to as community book exchanges, book trading posts, pop-up libraries, and Noox (Neighbourhood bOOk eXchange).

The Little Free Library phenomenon, according to Wikipedia, started in 2009 in Hudson, Wisconsin.

“Todd Bol mounted a wooden container designed to look like a school house on a post on his lawn as a tribute to his mother, who was a book lover and school teacher.”

Recently I found a Little Free Library at Chollas Lake, but it also has nice chairs to sit in!

Little Free Library

Little Free Library

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Quoting Wikipedia again:

Little Free Library owners can create their own library box, usually about the size of a doll house, or purchase one from the [Little Free Library website]. Libraries may be registered for a fee and assigned a number at the organization’s website. Libraries can be found through their GPS coordinates. Owners receive a sign that reads “Little Free Library”. They often have the phrase, “Take a Book. Leave a Book.”

As of February 2013, all 50 states and 40 countries worldwide have been involved in the literary program.[6

The original goal was the creation of 2,150 Little Libraries, which would surpass the number of libraries founded by Andrew Carnegie. As of January 2014, there are over 15,000 Little Libraries worldwide, including all 50 states and 40 countries.

Here is a list of Little Free Libraries that I know of as of January 25, 2015:

2727 Southampton Road, Carlsbad
2357 Summerwind Place, Carlsbad
4190 Sunnyhill Drive, Carlsbad
2605 Unicornio Street, Carlsbad
911 Rutgers Avenue, Chula Vista
601 Crescent Drive, Chula Vista
200 Stratford Court, Del Mar
1902 Quidort Court, El Cajon
1332 Whitsett Drive, El Cajon
1650 Sunburst Drive, El Cajon
107 Woodshadow Lane, Encinitas
744 Quiet Hills Farm Road, Escondido
2356 Heather Point, Escondido
660 East Grand Avenue, Escondido
1263 Canter Road, Escondido
611 El Norte Hills Place, Escondido
1683 Calle Candela, La Jolla
Little Free Library4622 Grandview Terrace, La Mesa
10733 Itzamna Road, La Mesa
4424 Nabal Drive, La Mesa
4351 Parks Avenue, La Mesa
4630 Palm Avenue, La Mesa (picture ►)
10615 Snyder Road, La Mesa
317 Hoover Street, Oceanside
16285 Oak Creek Trail, Poway
13130 Woodmont Street, Poway
12133 Sage View Road, Poway
13423 Cricket Hill, Poway
3412 Quince St, San Diego
2611 Grandview St, San Diego
3343 Harbor View Drive, San Diego
2263 Pentuckett Avenue, San Diego
4963 Canterbury Drive, San Diego
1079 Cypress Avenue, San Diego
3314 Karok Avenue, San Diego
2153 Pine Street, San Diego
2731 Amulet Street, San Diego
12655 Pacato Circle South, San Diego
4523 Cather Avenue, San Diego
815 Avalon Court, San Diego
10444 Cheviot Court, San Diego
4567 East Talmadge Drive, San Diego
5854 Malvern Court, San Diego
3530 Cooper Street, San Diego
2341 Whitman Street, San Diego
4649 Biona Drive, San Diego
9505 East Harland Circle, Santee

If you have a Little Free Library, you can register it to make it official.

Little Free Library

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

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Zoey the Cool (Book) CatZoey the Cool Cat exploring the books

My margarita pie recipe for National Pie Day on 1/23/15

Did you know?

This coming Friday, January 23, is National Pie Day!

My civic duty requires that I share my recipe for margarita pie:


4 cups vanilla ice cream, softened
½ cup thawed lemonade concentrate, undiluted
¼ cup tequila
2 tablespoons triple sec
1 6-ounce graham cracker crumb crust

Freeze a glass or metal bowl for 30 minutes.
Immediately add first 4 ingredients to bowl; stir well.
Return to freezer for 30 minutes.
Spoon partially frozen mixture into crust and cover.
Freeze for 4 hours.

Yields: 8 servings

Nutrition facts

Margarita pie caution

Margarita pie

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

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If you fly into San Diego….

Did you know?

AirplaneI have only flown once since 9/11.

It’s not that I fear flying.

It’s because I really really really really really don’t like waiting, especially if I have to stand and wait.

Zoey the Cool Cat bookI always have a book or magazine with me so that I can read if I’m forced to wait anywhere.

In the case of flying, though, I’m not forced to fly and wait in those security screening lines, so I don’t fly.

If I can’t get there by bus, train, car, bike, or foot, I figure I really don’t need to go.

However, if you are flying into San Diego, especially during the holidays, be sure to sit on the left side of the plane so you’ll have the most spectacular views of downtown San Diego.

Downtown San Diego from San Diego Sky Tours

Also remember to contact me because I often have free or discounted tickets to the San Diego Zoo, Safari Park, and SeaWorld if you’re interested in visiting those.

I also have some good resources after being here for 21 years so I can probably find you discounts on other attractions, too.

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

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IBOexchange update

Did you know?

If you missed my first post (and all the great comments) about IBOexchange, go here: IBOexchange.

After 17 days of using IBOexchange, I wanted to provide an update. I am having fun with it, but fun doesn’t always make money. However, in this case, income flow has started.

First, most of the IBOexchange members are in “network marketing,” “online marketing,” and “MLM” (multi-level marketing). That’s okay, though, because I’m not interested in changing careers, only in making contacts. If the network/online/MLM folks are so rich, then they should be able to buy Photographic Art at some point. All I have to do is keep making contacts because the more contacts you make, the greater the possibility of someone buying your product or service.

Two of my sites are registered with IBOexchange: my blog here and my Facebook business page. I have my WordPress blog registered because I have WordAds here, and every visitor here makes an “ad impression” for which I get paid.

Thanksgiving squirrelI have been blogging since June 2008, and I have been able to determine that blogging/liking/commenting truly does adhere to the 80/20 rule in that if I like/comment on a blog, 80 percent of those people will be by within 30 days to like/comment on my blog. Not only that, but 80 percent of those people will leave an equal number of likes and comments. If I leave 10 likes/comments, 80 percent will be by my blog within 30 days and leave 10 likes/comments.

Continuation can often result in relationships.

I’m currently following 3,033 blogs, so if I could like/comment them all today, within 30 days I’d have 2,426 likes/comments. Now picture me camping out in just 10 blogs per day for 30 days and leaving 10 likes/comments per day. Within 30 days after I finish, I’ll have 2,400 likes/comments….

….which turn into ad impressions, which makes me money!

Have I noticed an uptick in daily visits? Yes, I have, to the tune of an extra 100 hits per day, and that’s with me doing very little this past week because I’ve been sick.

Now let’s look at my Facebook business page. Facebook has this notification system whereby you can invite all of your friends to like your business page. It worked extremely well until I reached 500 likes. Once I reached that level, though, it was extremely difficult to get new likes. Of course, I got daily messages from Facebook offering to promote my page to get more likes for just $25 per day. No….

Thanksgiving squirrelFacebook likes in and of themselves won’t pay the bills. Contacts will, and Facebook knows that, but what small business has $25 per day to pay them to promote the business without any guarantee whatsoever. No….

When I started IBOexchange on November 5, my Facebook business page had 558 likes. As of a few minutes ago, 17 days later, it has 777 likes. That’s an average of almost 13 likes per day. That’s significant, even better than what Facebook was providing initially.

More importantly, though, Facebook provides me with a list of the people who have liked my business page. That’s key, because those are prospective customers. Now all I have to do is continue to reach out to them. It’s marketing at its most basic level.

Thanksgiving squirrelI also try to let everyone know that I made it to their Facebook page/web site/YouTube/whatever by leaving a simple comment: “Found my way here via IBOexchange.” That does two things: It lets them know that I’m serious about relationships, and it tells them that IBOexchange works if they don’t already know that.”

I also have a Photographic Art blog, a blog that hasn’t been very active. Beginning this weekend, I will endeavor to correct that deficiency and make it my Photographic Art blog, as it should be.

A good general rule of thumb might be the 80/20 rule: 80% of my posts here will be photos, music, philately, Zoey the Cool Cat, my wise old grandmother, etc., while 20% will be about my Photographic Art venture.

Thanks for stopping by! See you next time!Over at my Photographic Art blog, 80% of my posts will be about my Photographic Art venture, and 20% will be about everything else in life.

So if you want the best of both, be sure to follow both. Here’s my Photographic Art blog: Photographic Art by Russel Ray Photos. That is where I will be posting specials, new Photographic Art, and happiness when someone buys something. I probably will also move my “How I Did It” series from here over to there.

If you think you might be interested in IBOexchange for your business, click on the image below:


Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos This post approved by Zoey the Cool Cat

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