Friday, December 28, 2007

Returning to the Earth

This is an old wheel-barrow that has seen it's better days. This photo was taken at my brothers where his wife collects old artifacts for her garden.

I hope everyone has a great New Years if I don't talk to you before hand.

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Life Among the Trees





My big brother has always wanted a tree house. So when his first grandchild came along he decided he owed her a really special one. Here is the result. It was constructed with residential grade timber and has electricity. What you don't see here is the view it has of the valley below is where deer roam through. It is truly a special place for young and old alike.

That is big brother on the right in the middle picture. Thanks Larry and Carol for a great Christmas and a wonderful place to go for Christmas.

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Merry Christmas to All


Christmas is a time of celebration for all. I thank God for the gift that he gave each of us.

This picture was taken at my brother's home near Jefferson City, Missouri. It was a beautiful day today as we celebrated Christmas at his home. I love the way the sunlight poured into his dining room illuminating the Christmas table. My niece's daughter who is about 5 made the napkin rings and had set the table.

I wish each of you a wonderful holiday season. It is truly neat to have blogging friends from all over the United States and the world.

Friday, December 21, 2007

Fall Classic


I haven't been able to get out and take many pictures lately. This is one from the archives. It is a fruit and vegetable stand in Northwest Arkansas.

I hope everyone has a great holiday season. Best wishes from Missouri to the rest of the world.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Wilson's Creek Visitor Center


This is a picture of people going to and coming from the Visitor Center ceremony for the Luminary Festival. A heavy mist and generally yucky day keep the crowd down somewhat but it was still well attended.

We escaped the ice storm this time. We had a heavy coating on Monday morning but it was pretty well gone by the end of the day. I am sick for those in Oklahoma who are suffering the brunt of this storm. Also the towns along the western edge of Missouri, Lamar in particular was hard hit.

I am trying to make some rounds. I apologize for not commenting often lately and I will attempt to do better.

Sunday, December 09, 2007

Wilson's Creek Luminary Festival

Wilson's Creek National Battlefield came alive with the glow of luminaries and lanterns on Saturday December 8th. One luminary for each soldier that died in the battle was placed along the 5 mile road through the battlefield.

This shot was taken at the Ray House which has been the subject in many of my pictures before. The night was very foggy and a heavy mist and occasional light shower would take their toll on the luminaries. I thought that was very appropriate as it reminded me of lives extinguished in the battle.

We are expecting another major ice storm so if you don't hear from me for a while you will know I lost power.

Saturday, December 08, 2007

Chewbacca

I want to take a couple of minutes to introduce you to Chewbacca, Chewie for short. My oldest daughter decided we (she) needed a dog and this is the result. He is the smartest little thing I have ever seen. He has captured everyone's heart.

The only problem I have with him is he is keeping me too busy. He likes to play rough and I am his favorite target or the only one dumb enough to let him play rough.

Right now he weighs about 2 pounds and is about 10 inches long. He won't get much bigger. He is a Papillon which is French for butterfly or moth. When he gets older his ears will resemble the wings of a butterfly.

So I am off to play. See you later and take care.

Friday, December 07, 2007

Pearl Harbor

Picture from USN Archives

This picture provokes more memories to me than any other in history. I don't know exactly why, as I was not even born yet. My father served in WW2 and perhaps this is the reason. It represents the last time I can see from a historical standpoint that we came together as a nation for a war. We were just and there was no question whom the enemy was.

Today the nations we were at war against are our greatest friends and much has changed. The enemy in the wars of today are more ellusive. The reasons more political and less noble.

This remains in my mind one of the greatest photographs ever taken. It stirred more to action than any other. The battleship USS Arizona remains today on the mud at the bottom of Pearl Harbor, an interment for the thousand or so that died on her. She remains on the Navy ship list. Her name provokes memories for many. May the Arizona rest in peace and may those that perished with her be blessed.

Let us not forget Pearl Harbor.

Monday, December 03, 2007

December Storm Clouds

This picture was taken at the Jefferson Avenue Footbridge over the Burlington Northern Santa Fe (formerly and more affectionately known as the Frisco RR. ) North Yard in Springfield. The footbridge is on the National Register of Historic Places. I was looking for some trains to shoot pictures of with the impressive clouds but could not get the railroad to cooperate so I settled for the bridge.

Within minutes it was raining cats and dogs and when I took this picture I was in short sleeves. Later that afternoon I had the winter coat out again. That is what they say about Missouri weather. If you don't like it wait a few minutes and it will change.

Sunday, December 02, 2007

The Porches of Silverton, Colorado: Part 7, White Fringe


Another simple porch with the touch of a simple white trim. A classic.

Have a great Sunday. We will be on to something new soon.

Saturday, December 01, 2007

The Porches of Silverton, Colorado Part 6 - Simplicity

I like this porch for its' simple styling and the simple mode of transportation which uses it as a parking place.

I hope everyone is having a great weekend. One more porch and I will conclude this little series.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

The Porches of Silverton, Colorado Part 5, A Collection


I am once again reaching back into the archives to my Colorado trip. I have wanted to make this series since I took them. It is a good thing I have them because I have not been able to get out and take too many pictures lately.

This is one street in Silverton. I loved the quaint little houses which probably all looked the similar when they were built as miner cabins.

Monday, November 26, 2007

The Porches of Silverton, Colorado Part 4: A Most Unusual House

I am not quite sure how to characterize this porch. The "tunnel" is the porch, but then so is the little cupola. This partially underground home was to weird to pass up.




Sunday, November 25, 2007

First Snow, Part 2


Some additional shots from the "first snow" of the season.

Hope everyone has a good start to your week.

Saturday, November 24, 2007

First Snow!




There is nothing quite like the first light snowfall of a fall season. We woke up to this this morning and it looked quite refreshing.
A nice way to kick off the holiday season.

Thursday, November 22, 2007

The Porches of Silverton, Colorado Part 3


Although not an open porch this one was among my favorites of Silverton. A practical porch for a city at 9,000+ feet.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Native American Pow-Wow Missouri State University






Happy Thanksgiving everyone! Today's shots were taken in the McDonald Arena on the Missouri State Campus. The Native American Pow-Wow was sponsored by the University's department of Ethnic Studies (Not sure what the official name is).

These are a proud people and I won't get onto my soapbox of how I feel they have been treated in American history.

I thought this series was appropriate for Thanksgiving weekend.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

The Porches of Silverton, Colorado Part 2


This was probably one of the largest porches I saw in Silverton. I love the blue and white together. This is one of those shots where the porch looked best in context with the whole house shot.

I hope everyone has a great start to the week. I wish everyone in the US safe travels at Thanksgiving and a happy Thanksgiving. Thanksgiving is the one holiday everyone at my home enjoys the most. Yes, my girls like it better than Christmas.

Friday, November 16, 2007

The Porches of Silverton, Colorado Part 1


Silverton was like a treasure trove of unique little front porches. Each house had it's own style of porch. Some like this one were decorative, others were more functional at 9,000+ feet There were absolutely no cookie cutter houses here.


This porch was nestled in a bunch of Colorado Blue Spruces and as all the front porches in Silverton had a great view.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

The End of the Season

The trip to Warrensburg marked the end of marching band season. We had a really good year placing high in each of the competitions we entered. The band instructor commented on how the band was one of the easiest he has had to work with. What he meant was there are no problems from a behavior standpoint. I think he has learned not to do a big trip because the band now attracts students that want to be in the band for the band and not the trip.

This picture is of the Odessa, Missouri band. They had some great photo props as the back drop for their performance. What an ink jet printer huh?

Hope everyone is having a good week.

Monday, November 12, 2007

A Promise Fulfilled - Part 2





This set of pictures kind of illustrate the color problem this year. The colors are very muted or brown this year. Last year was the most colorful year I can remember and this year is probably the least colorful I can remember. On top of the late turning due to lack of cool temperatures, then we got a freeze that was severe and basically turned everything kind of frozen brown.

Oh well, it kind of goes with this year and the many weather extremes we have had.

The pictures were taken near Osceola, Missouri on Truman Lake.

I hope everyone has a good week.

Thursday, November 08, 2007

A Promise Fulfilled - Part 1


I promised Stacy, a blogging friend who lives in Taiwan, some fall color pictures last summer. Little did I know at the time how poor the colors were going to be this year. Well last week going to Warrensburg we finally hit some color.

These two shots were taken on the University of Central Missouri campus. The sculpture is of a couple dancing. I will leave the rest of the interpretation to you.

In part 2 I will show some scenes on Truman Lake.

Happy fall Stacy!

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Giants This Way Pass






Its approach I first see,
a blinding light on the dark monster.
I can see birds fleeing its path,
cars race to get out of its approach.
Leaves on the fading fall trees launch into the air
as the blast of its mighty exhaust frees them .
It speaks its presence at each crossing,
getting louder as it closes.
Standing on the station platform
the ground begins to shake,
the throb of its diesel engines drown out all other noise.
Its horn blares its presence to all.
Suddenly the great locomotives pass.
The sound of metal against metal sings in the winds of its passing.
The noise dies to leave the sound of the metal wheels
and the breeze of each passing car.
A clack on the track counts each one of the cars
and sings a hymn for each one.
One, two...a hundred and the storm passes
and fades into the distance.
The sound of birds, dogs and children playing returns
as the giant heads west.

Monday, November 05, 2007

University of Central Missouri



We attended our final marching band competition for the year at the University of Central Missouri in Warrensburg. It was a beautiful fall day and I finally got to see some fall color on the campus.

The band did very well with high scores. They took first in the prelims and a close second in the finals. The top three bands were all outstanding and I wouldn't have wanted to be a judge at this competition.

The top picture is of the bell tower from the stands in which we were sitting. The second picture was after prelims when everyone was making a mad dash to get to the restaurants first.

I hope everyone is having a good week.

Friday, November 02, 2007

Holly, Kansas

I love small towns because you find some of the most wonderful small buildings like this one. I would love to know the history behind this building. This was taken, as the title suggests, in Holly, Kansas on my way to Colorado. Most people try to get through Kansas as quickly as possible. I always try to linger a little while.

I hope everyone has a great weekend.





Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Children's Lit Fest - We Are All Still Kids at Heart

The children were not the only ones enjoying the books. This is actually a friend of mind who happened to be there helping his daughter who is a local elementary librarian.

He was pretty intense into this book until he noticed me pointing my camera at him!

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Stormy Skies


Taken on the road from Chama, NM to Shiprock, NM. The sun was trying to break through on the rocks and the dark storm clouds were imposing behind them. It was truly a unique picture taking day.

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Children's Lit Fest - Sisters



The other night I had the privilege of photographing the Children's Lit Fest here in Springfield with Teresa. There is a point where the children's authors do some talking, which was apparently too much for this young lady. Here sis is more than happy to point out her sister being asleep. Dad told me he plans to use this picture against her someday when her boyfriends come over.

Children's authors from all over the country come in to talk about their books. It is fun to meet and talk to these famous authors and the kids enjoy getting their autographs and photographs.

Friday, October 26, 2007

Collections

To celebrate the season and year we are moving into. This is a rather poor shot of my presidential button collection that I recently got out of the drawer and mounted. The buttons were so shiny I had a lot of trouble with light and reflections.

I got started in this with my Grandmother who was a staunch Republican. It would always shock me when she actually unwrapped from its protective paper a Democratic button to give to me.

Have a great weekend.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Reflections on a Higher God

This is a photo taken at Washington Avenue Baptist Church on the Drury Campus. It is a well known predominantly African-American Church.

I have been struggling a bit lately with Church. Taking the photos of the Chapel and this Church have forced me to ponder my position and beliefs somewhat. We all go through life's ebbs and flows and I believe I am at one of those ebbs.

I hope you all have a good day today.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Fountains

As you approach the OTC (Ozarks Technical College) Campus you are greeted with a huge fountain. Funds for this fountain were donated by local business owner John Q. Hammons. He loves fountains so there are a few around town. This one is probably the largest and most costly. I don't know the specifics of the fountain, but it must circulate water in the hundreds of thousand gallon range on a daily basis.

Many times you will find people playing in the water. On this particular night the temperature was hovering at about 60 so it was a tad cool.

I hope everyone is having a good week.

Monday, October 22, 2007

Stone Chapel From the South

After I saw the results of the last shot I moved south and got a more traditional view of the Chapel. It almost seems appropriate for Halloween with the trees casting their shadows.

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Drury University's Stone Chapel

Springfield is home to a fairly well known small university. Much smaller than the huge state university here Drury University plods along putting out graduates who are well versed, especially in business with an economics slant.

Teresa and I were on campus Friday night for a Children's Literature Festival and decided it would be worth a return trip with our cameras. This is Stone Chapel. Drury has its roots as a Christian School although it has long since shed that title. This was one of the original buildings on campus I believe, but am not certain.

The bright white like in the lower right corner is the moon. I started to crop in out but decided it added a little flare to the shot. This was just past sundown during that time the sky comes out a deep blue. A little light from the sun was left casting a glow on the Chapel.

I hope everyone has a great Sunday.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Not Everyone Was Watching the Bands


I had my 300mm telephoto lens at Ozarko last Saturday which let me get this photo of a tike playing with his mom. I bet if he was looking the other way he wouldn't have been having so much fun, we were about 100 feet above the field. in the MSU stadium. The tilt of the seats is steep and the second level is very high.

I hope to get out and get some new pictures this weekend. Until then have a good weekend.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Is This Seat Taken?


Wow what a response to my last question. If you want to see what inspires our fellow photographers read the comments on the last post.

One of the biggest things that does inspire me are the photos of my fellow bloggers. Take for instance today's picture, it was inspired by recent postings from Anna and Elaine (Chamielle at right) that show stadium seats empty. I just added a twist and added people. Yes, people! For a non-people in my picture person I have really gotten addicted to people. This was taken at the Ozarko competition. There were 10,000 people on my side of the stadium and these 3 on the other side. I couldn't pass it up.

Thanks for your comments yesterday. I take all your inspiration advice to heart. I am ready to get out again as soon as I can.

Until next time....take care.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Inspiration



Shawnee Mission South High School Color Guard, Shawnee Mission, Kansas
Taken at the Ozarko Marching Band Competition, Missouri State University in Springfield, Missouri.
Blogger wouldn't let me upload a picture this morning so I thought I would have a discussion with you all. Now as you can see it did? Wierd, huh?

I loved the light and the outfits of this group. They put on a really good show.

I have been struggling with inspiration since I returned from my western trip. It is hard to get excited about taking pictures after seeing the many wonderful sights in the West. Here is today's discussion topic. What do you do to recharge your batteries and get inspired to take photos again?

Let me know by comment what types of things you do to kick start your creative juices.

Thanks and hopefully the photo uploader won't be blocked forever. After all the message I am getting says "Blogger is aware of the problem and is currently working on a fix." Now it works...who knows?

Until next time, take care.