Thursday, May 31, 2007
My apologies to Norm, Kevin and crew for the use of their shows title, but nothing else came to mind this morning.
Today's pictures are from the Harry S. Truman birthplace home in Lamar, Missouri. Harry lived in this house for about the first 18 months of his life before the family moved to Independence. Long enough to establish history though.
Well there is more history to this house than just the Truman's as one of the owners after the Truman's was my Grandmother's family, the Earp's. Yes, we are related to the famous western Marshall Wyatt Earp. Wyatt actually started his law enforcement career in Lamar, where his first wife is buried. Anyway I am off the story. The greatest time I ever had visiting the Truman birthplace took place a few years ago when I went with my Grandmother and my Great Aunt and they talked about all their memories from this house.
Rather the normal outside shot I have chosen a couple of pictures that I hope you enjoy. The top one is looking out of the front window of the sitting room with the Truman family bible on the table to the right. The second looks from outside the "bump-out" through it to the other side. These bump-outs were put in to allow more light to come into the house.
Another presidential connection....I hope you all enjoy your Thursday.
Wednesday, May 30, 2007
I remember getting a popcorn and a coke and settling into the comfortable chairs and enjoying a movie and the air conditioning when I was a kid over summer break. I remember the older guy who was the theatre "policeman" and he would go around making sure all of us kids were behaving and not trashing his theatre. Ah, the good old days.
This was a great place to come. Thinking back I don't remember ever being bored in the small towns I grew up in as a kid. I hear kids today complaining about thier small towns. But then I didn't exactly go back to one either.
Hope everyone has a great Wednesday and that you take some time to go to the movies!
Tuesday, May 29, 2007
Monday, May 28, 2007
Sunday, May 27, 2007
Dad loved aircraft, even more than I love trains. This business allowed him to be with what he loved until the end. My Dad began flying when he enlisted in the Navy in WW2. He became a training pilot, training young pilots how to fly so they could go on to the Pacific and fly off the aircraft carriers. I asked him if he missed not being in the actual combat arena and he used to say the trainer pilots had a higher mortality rate than the combat pilots in the Pacific. I guess the speed that which they had to train was incredible and that could lead to a lot of accidents. He didn't miss action entirely. For some time he flew OS2U Kingfisher seaplanes on anti-submarine patrols in addition to his training duties out of Pensacola. When the war ended he had orders to the Pacific to fly the new P-61 Black Widow night fighters escorting bombers over Japan.
Memorial Day is always special to me as I remember those in my family who have gone before me. I especially think of my Dad who served in WW2 and my Grandfather who served in WW1 as I go through this holiday weekend.
Take care everyone.
Saturday, May 26, 2007
What is unusual about it is there was only one locomotive and all the container cars were empty. Talk about a trade imbalance. Where are the containers?
Any way here it is. The train caught where, as a boy, I used to ride my bike to and watch trains of the old Frisco Railroad go by. Memories.
Time is short today. I hope everyone has had a good Saturday and I hope you are enjoying your Memorial Day Holiday (if you are in the States, that is).
Friday, May 25, 2007
Just west of Denver in the Clear Creek Canyon area that I-70 passes through is some of the neatest railroad history in the country. 125 years ago this rugged country was difficult to get to. It was the realm of mountain toll roads, busted wagon wheels, and days of travel. Then silver was discovered. Men did what men do best. They conquered, and some say ruined, the country. Using what was known as "narrow gauge" the railroad came to Clear Creek Country. Narrow gauge refers to the distance between the rails. On a standard railroad the gauge is 4 feet, eight and one half inches. (Roman chariot wheel spacing, I believe) In these mountains they used a gauge of 3 feet to reduce costs and time.
If you drive west of Denver on the old 40 highway through Golden most of this highway follows the path of the narrow gauge. In fact it was highway 40 that was the death of the narrow gauge and it was I-70 that erased most of the history of the area.
Today's pictures are of remnants of the Colorado and Southern narrow gauge. The top picture is C&S Number 60 and a coach on display at Idaho Springs. The bottom two pictures are of the Devil's Gate Bridge on the Georgetown Loop. This was rebuilt as a tourist railroad in the 1960's and is located between Georgetown and Silver Plume. Long after the minerals played out the C& S survived due to the popularity of this section of track. People from Denver would ride the narrow gauge to see this loop and then picnic in Silver Plume.
I hope you enjoyed today's history lesson. Have a great Friday.
Thursday, May 24, 2007
Another of the Stockton Lake Marina shots. This is a totally different dock than the one shown yesterday. It is a larger dock and there are about 5 more just like it. There must be about 200 sailboats that call this marina home.
Things are actually calming down here and getting back to a more normal post graduation routine. I hope to be able to get around to your blogs on a more regular basis again.
Stockton Lake is a beautiful lake and a small one compared to the other nearby lakes such as Table Rock, Lake of the Ozarks, Truman Lake and Bull Shoals Lake. All were man-made and all within an hour and a half of Springfield.
Stockton, Missouri is the county seat of Cedar County. It was the site of a devastating tornado that ripped through the heart of town about 3 years ago. The entire city square (downtown) was leveled except for one bank. Stockton has rebuilt well compared to some of the other towns that were hit in the same storm. I was driving home from Omaha that day and I have never seen a day that was so muggy and conducive to the development of severe storms. Fortunately I made it home just before the storms got to our area.
Take care and have a good Thursday.
Wednesday, May 23, 2007
I have added a new link to the right. Sarah is a talented young photographer (I wish I was that young) whose work I enjoy. Please check it out.
I hope everyone has a great Wednesday. I have "graduated" the oldest and the youngest has a birthday today.
Tuesday, May 22, 2007
This is the outside of the Cosmosphere in Hutchinson, Kansas. Hutch is a neat little town and well worth your time if you happen to be traveling across Kansas. Take some time to linger, Kansas does have a lot to offer if you do your research.
Take care and have a good Tuesday.
Monday, May 21, 2007
Hutchinson is a fairly small Kansas town. It, at one time, boasted four railroads. The Santa Fe Super Chief used to make regular stops here on its way from Chicago to Los Angeles.
Today "Hutch", as it is referred to by locals, is fairly quiet. But there is one thing to do that is hard to find anywhere else in the Midwest. Hutchinson is the home of the Cosmosphere. This spaceflight museum is like no other that I have seen. It is extremely well done and I can't believe the collection they have been able to amass.
Tomorrow we will explore the Cosmosphere just a little further before I turn my attention to this weekend's trip.
Have a great Monday.
Sunday, May 20, 2007
I am finishing the third in a series of audio books by Nelson Demille. I have come to really like audio books as I listen to them as I go back and forth to work or to other things like photo shoots. I check these out from the public library here and while this is great it means you can only get popular titles like this when they are available, so sometimes a wait is involved.
This particular series is about former NYPD detective John Corey and his adventures. The first book was Plum Island, the second is The Lion's Game and the third was Nightfall. As some of you may have figured out my third one is actually the second one in the series. This is another potential disadvantage of the library in that you sometimes have to take a series out of order.
I have listened to many books on CD, both fiction and nonfiction. It is a great use of that deadtime.
The picture above is another taken at the Sedgwick County Zoo in Wichita, KS. I will get back to some regular postings tomorrow. It is so much fun to find things to do and take pictures of in the Midwest. For example, I found out yesterday evening that it was Sucker Days in Nixa, Missouri a scant 10 minutes from the house. Sucker Days you ask? Suckers are a small fish in this area and each year they have this massive fish fry in Nixa to celebrate the Sucker. What fun that would have been to go take pictures of! If I had only known.
Well I have rambled on long enough today. Have a great Sunday and check out a book on tape or CD.
Saturday, May 19, 2007
This was a great zoo and I am not a real zoo fan. It was clean and the animals actually seemed content in their habitats.
I spent most of this day on the highway. I made a trip back to my two hometowns to take pictures. I will be sharing these in the coming days along with many stories of Southwest Missouri.
Sorry this is so late but I left very early this morning. I hope everyone is having a great Saturday. Take some time to lounge around or sunbathe like our friend above. I hope some of our friends in England are getting some sunshine and that some of our friends in Florida are getting some rain!
Friday, May 18, 2007
A few weeks back I posted pictures from the Eisenhower Presidential Library. Well I was digging way back in the archives last night and I found these pictures of the George H W Bush Presidential Library at College Station, Texas.
This was truly an impressive library. They have done a nice job on it. It was a very honest and objective view of the world and his accomplishments and dissapointments in office.
I took these pictures with the Olympus C-740 as this was before I had a real interest in photography. The top picture is of course the exterior shot. The bottom picture was taken just inside and was a very impressive large painting that I liked very much. Of course this was taken when George W was more popular!
I probably don't need to remind you of my interest in the institution of the presidency and the men that have served. My favorite biography's are of those individuals. Mornings on Horseback is a good biography of the early life of Theodore Roosevelt and is a pleasurable and quick read.
Well enough for today, I hope everyone has a great Friday.
Thursday, May 17, 2007
This is a photo of the McElhany house on Walnut Street. The house is used for offices now but has been dutifully restored. Many years ago now I had an office in the servants quarters of this fine home. Probably the neatest office one could have had.
I love the columns of this house and the intricate details that are on them. I am glad the owner of the house makes it still look so much like a house rather than offices. Notice the third floor window open. There were two little stick figures in the window looking down. Not sure what that was all about.
Since this was a business I didn't mind going up and taking pictures of the inside of the actual porch. I like all the sitting space on this porch, hence the title of today's posting.
Have a great Thursday everyone.
Wednesday, May 16, 2007
Here goes nothing.
1. I was born a moderate wanderer. I went to school in 4 different places. Three cities in Missouri and one in Iowa. This had a great influence on my later life as I am still a wanderer or should I say explorer which would be a title I would prefer.
2. I loved TV growing up. My favorite shows (see how many you recognize) were Gilligan's Island, Daniel Boone, Star Trek and Black Sheep Squadron. Notice the wandering pattern? Oh and by the way I rarely watch TV any more, but movies are fair game.
3. My dad used to take me ice skating when it warmed up to 15 degrees below zero (Fahrenheit). Yes, this was in Northern Iowa.
4. I rode my first real train at 5 and have been doing so since. (OK, this fact isn't so interesting, but I had to include trains somewhere).
5. My parents were married in New Orleans. My lovely wife is from New Orleans. Weird huh?
6. Teresa and I moved to Lawton, Oklahoma when we got married. What's so unusual about that, you ask. Well, Lawton is the home of Fort Sill and I think I was the only guy without an Army haircut in town. My best friends there were a Lawton City policeman and a full blooded Kiowa Native American and we stay in regular contact.
7. OK, you got me here, this one is partially talked about in my profile. Teresa and I were reading a newspaper article about one of our local newscasters. This guy is a real nut. Anyway he went on a Spring Break trip that took him to all 48 contiguous states in the one week. Well, Teresa and I, being the natural born wanderers we are decided we could do this feat with our two daughters. They were just starting school at the time. We reasoned we would have to accomplish this goal before the oldest hit High School because we knew at that time she would loose interest. (We hit that one on the head) We hit our last state (New York) the summer of her eighth grade year. These are the only two kids in school that can color in every one of the 48 contiguous states. We are still trying to figure out how to do Alaska and Hawaii.
8. I have been through a Tornado. That was fun. (Northern Iowa again)
I don't know if these are interesting or not but it was fun. Thanks Stacy for the opportunity. Now I am supposed to tag eight people, but being the curmudgeon that I am I will let you all decide if you are tagged or not.
See you in the morning.
Tuesday, May 15, 2007
At the Missouri State Capitol in Jefferson City there is a statue of Thomas Jefferson, who initiated the Lewis and Clark expedition which helped put Missouri, one of the starting states, Illinois claims them too on the map. Jefferson was idealistic, visionary, and controversial.
I hope everyone has a great Tuesday and I hope to be better prepared tomorrow.
Monday, May 14, 2007
There were a lot of opportunities to take pictures at a ball game so if you haven't considered it, consider taking the camera to a ball game near you. You can practice action shots and there are always moments like the above one to capture. I have no idea who they were but they looked like they were having fun and that is what attracted my camera.
Have a great Monday!
Sunday, May 13, 2007
I am not the only one that enjoys the front porch. This little guy was stretched out on the cool wood in the heat of the day. He sure looks relaxed. This porch was in a state of disrepair and or repair. Not sure which. But that squirrel was sure enjoying it.
I hope everyone had a good Sunday and Mother's Day.
Saturday, May 12, 2007
I am off today in search of my new theme. Look for the great american front porch shots over the next few months. We'll see how far we get with this one before I get shot taking pictures of someone's front porch.
I hope everyone has a great Saturday and don't forget to look up.
Friday, May 11, 2007
I took this shot the other night near Burrell Park and yes I did crop it to emphasis the lines I wanted to show. It seems to explain my life the last few months. I recently changed jobs, which at my age is not the easiest thing in the world to do. I had been working long hours and more importantly bringing it home with me and worrying about it when I wasn't physically there. So I changed. Life is better now, the new place is nice and the people are good. I will miss my friends at the old place, but I had to do what I did.
The shot above is dedicated to those I left behind. I pray for their health and well being.
Judging from the response yesterday I need to get out and do a photo story on the old homes of Springfield. I can't believe the reaction you all gave. Yes Anna I feel a theme coming on. Thanks for your responses. I will see where this goes.
By the way today is my 100th post. I was going to let it go by unmentioned, but this is one of the mechanisms I used to cope with my stress that I talk about above. Thanks to you all for reading and commenting through the above time. Life is better now and somehow that makes it a little harder to be creative. Does that make any sense?
Have a great Friday and a great weekend!
Thursday, May 10, 2007
As you can see this pictures returns to one of my favorite themes...the front porch. Once again prominent it reflects a time when the popular past time was sitting on the porch talking to neighbors instead of being cocooned in your house with your tv and internet.
Look at the construction and the curves in this house. All I know is that a builder today will tell you to add $ signs to any construction if you want any thing curved in a house and look at all of those you see above.
I hope you have enjoyed today's post, and I hope you have a good Thursday. I have been slow getting around to everyone and hope to catch up soon.
Wednesday, May 09, 2007
This evening stroll was fun although I am suffering from an unintended consequence from it. Mosquito bites. I should have known since we were next to water. Oh well, when one starts itching I think of all the neat pictures I got!
All is quiet here in the Ozark Plateau. There are tornadoes to the west and flooding on the Missouri River. I normally go to Omaha the first weekend in May. I am glad I didn't this year as they had severe rain and flooding this last weekend.
Well I have rambled on enough for today. I hope everyone has a great Wednesday.
Tuesday, May 08, 2007
Things are a bit crazy here right now. For the next three weeks we will have visitors from out of town as people drift in and out for my oldest daughters high school graduation. We have what seems to be every evening occupied with an event as school draws to a close.
The good news is we are not going to get the severe weather originally forecast. The system sort of died after spreading its wrath across Kansas. The bad news is we aren't going to get the rain also which we need.
I hope everyone has a great Tuesday.
Monday, May 07, 2007
The intersection of Walnut and JQ Hammonds became a chalk artists board, although the busy intersection saw no shortage of foot traffic so the art didn't last long.
The area high schools took their stab at making art cars. This old Chevy Astro van got quite a face lift.
Back to more normal pictures tomorrow, but I thought you all may enjoy seeing artsfest.
Have a great Monday.
Sunday, May 06, 2007
Architecture shots are just about my favorite. I started with this shot as some of you may remember an almost identical shot from a few weeks back in the daylight. There is something about a well designed building that really excites me. Perhaps I should have been an architect.
The evening was SO nice. It was about 70 degrees with a stiff 10 mph breeze out of the southwest so it was very pleasant. Tomorrow and Tuesday the storms from Kansas are scheduled to roll in.
I hope everyone is having a great weekend. Have a good Sunday.
Saturday, May 05, 2007
A number of months ago I posted results from another portrait session that Teresa and I did. Today I am posting a couple of shots from one we did last weekend. I did the shooting this time and Teresa acted as my assistant and teacher showing me how to pose our friend Debbie.
I have got to say this portrait stuff is easy when you have a good model. Some people are much easier to take pictures of than others and Debbie was one of the easiest. It was almost hard to get her without a smile.
We took the pictures at Springfield's Founders Park which gives both urban and natural shot possibilities. It is a great little park that measures maybe 200 feet deep and a 1/4 block long. It honors those that founded Springfield back in time and features concrete, a water feature (still off as of now) and natural features. They use it in the summer to show outdoor movies. Many photographers use it for its variety.
I hope everyone is having a great weekend. Take care.
Friday, May 04, 2007
The ole blog takes a historic twist this morning. Today we are visiting The Museum of Science and Industry in Chicago, Ill. We have descended into the depths aboard the German U boat U-505. You are looking at the engine indicator in the engine room of that U boat in the top picture. This particular item caught my attention due to the variety of German writing on it.
In the second picture you are looking at the very rear of the craft. The round object slightly off center to the right is the aft torpedo tube. The beds are lowered to show the conditions the crew slept in. Remember there was always activity going on as crews took shifts.
The U-505 was captured off the coast of Africa by the American Escort Carrier Guadalcanal and several escort destroyers, including the USS Pillsbury. The submarine was in the process of being scuttled or sunk by her crew when US sailors rushed on board the sinking ship and were able to cap the sea strainer which had been opened to let large amounts of water in. Because of this gallant and fast action the code machine and indeed the whole submarine were captured. This leads us to Chicago where the sub is on display.
If you ever get a chance stop by The Museum of Science and industry in Chicago. It is a fantastic place to visit. The pictures were taken about 3 years ago with my trusty Olympus. I converted them to black and white for today's post.
Have a great Friday.
Thursday, May 03, 2007
I hope this day finds everyone well. I appreciate the new arrivals to the blog. I hope you enjoy what you see. Back to normal tomorrow. Just wondered what everyone thought of the Elements creations. Being with few words this morning I will wish everyone a great Thursday.