Wednesday, August 11, 2010

One last photo in the Katie's Garden series. It was truly a delight to experience the Sherrod/Pool hospitality-- I'm trying to figure out when I might get back to spend some more time in the garden! Fort Worth, Texas. 6 August 2010.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

I didn't get anywhere near as much time to photograph the butterflies (and colorful moths) as I'd have liked. Fort Worth Texas. 7 August 2010.

Monday, August 09, 2010

Katie's garden is filled with all sorts of magic and surprises. Here is a guardian angel who looks after animals. Fort Worth, Texas. 7 August 2010.

Sunday, August 08, 2010

These lovely plants were interspersed in the ground cover by the path to the guesthouse. I love the way they caught the early morning light. Fort Worth Texas. 7 August 2010.

Saturday, August 07, 2010

More from Katie's garden. Fort Worth, Texas. 6 August 2010.

Friday, August 06, 2010

I'm in Fort Worth for a meeting and able to take advantage of our breaks to visit my friend Katie's garden. With the rain that they had in July the garden is particularly stunning. 6 August 2010. Fort Worth, Texas.

Tuesday, August 03, 2010

I know, I know-- not exactly a DSLR-quality photo. A little difficult even to make out what it is, perhaps, too....
For reasons of which I am not sure, I happened to go out to breakfast three days in a row last week. On Thursday I went to Fat Nat's, in New Hope. On Friday it was 3 Squares in Maple Grove, and on Saturday it was Al's Breakfast in Dinkytown. Fat Nat's got the greasy spoon award (not terribly inspired food, but not expensive, either), 3 Squares got the overall-quality award (we shared steak and eggs and blueberry french toast-- both were excellent), and Al's Breakfast (pictured here) got the atmosphere award. Why the area of Minneapolis it is in is called 'Dinkytown', I have no idea (perhaps it will be revealed to me after I live here for more than 3 moths). The place is 10 feet wide, and has a long counter with 14 very traditional lunch-counter-type bar stools that are bolted to the floor. You eat with someone standing behind you, waiting, it seems, for you to leave. But no one appears to really rush because there is lots of atmosphere to absorb while you wait, and the food is really good (and inexpensive) once you do get seated. 31 July 2010. Minneapolis, MN.

Monday, July 19, 2010

This past weekend was "Maple Grove Days." We mostly missed it because of a church camping trip, but did catch the opening parade and the fireworks. We lucked out with the firworks-- they were supposed to be Saturday night (while we were camping) but two tornado warnings meant they got postponed. The tornado warnings were not too much fun when camping with a lot of young children. We spent 30 minutes on two occasions huddled in the bathrooms (actually, on the floor of a shower stall) with young children on our lap (who were wet, cold and scared).
We had a great viewing spot for the fireworks-- about 100 feet from our front door. Maple Grove, Minnesota. 18 July 2010.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

The last image from the south-east of Minnesota. We returned to the cities by way of the Mississippi river, stopping in Winona at an overlook. We look forward to coming back here in the late winter when the Bald eagles are apparently quite a sight (we did see one in Lanesboro, but couldn't stop to get a photo). 9 July 2010. Winona, Minnesota.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Last Friday's trip really was a marathon-- 400 miles in 12 hours. And it was lovely. Among other things (Warren will be happy to note) we saw this endless wind farm, happily co-existing with miles and miles of corn farms (kind of like the camels and the cattle, except bigger). East of Austin, Minnesota. 9 July 2010.

Friday, July 16, 2010

After leaving the Spam Museum last Friday we headed east, but soon stopped to view a rather interesting site-- camels and cattle, apparently being raised together. At first we thought they were llamas (tho not in pajamas), but finally decided they were, indeed, camels. What do you think? (Double click to enlarge.) East of Austin, Minnesota. 9 July 2010.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

We purchased a tiny can of "Spam Spread" (since neither one of us could remember the last time we had eaten Spam) at the gift shop, and then stopped at a grocery story to buy genuine Ritz crackers to put it on. Becky couldn't get over the idea that she was eating cat food, so was only good for a ceremonial (and symbolic) tasting. I decorated mine with bits of Cheetos. The baby spoon was purchased for a little one-year-old friend of ours (with matching plate). We figure he should be introduced to the finer things in life from an early age. Austin, Minnesota. 9 July 2010.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

I was serious when I said the other day that we didn't have enough time here. We easily could have spent two hours, and although intentionally a little kitschy, it's a very well designed, interactive museum. At the end of the self-guided tour through the museum (just before you end up in the gift shop, where you can buy, um, Spam fly swatters, and other fun things) is the Spam Game Show.

Test your knowledge of Spam trivia:
A. What year was Spam first produced?
B. What is Spam made of?
C. Who was the largest purchaser of Spam during WWII?
D. What other countries produce Spam?
E. How much Spam is consumed in the United States every second?

A. & B. Spam is a registered trademark name for a canned ground pork shoulder and ham product introduced by the Hormel Company in 1937.
C. During WW II, Hormel sold more than half of its output to the U.S. government, which supplied SPAM to the armed forces of the U.S., and also to the U.S.S.R. under the lend-lease program.
D. In addition to the U.S., spam is produced in 7 other countries: Australia, Denmark, UK, Japan, Philippines, South Korea and Taiwan. Spam is distributed in more than 50 countries.
E. In the United States alone, 3.6 cans of Spam are consumed every second.

More Spam trivia:
The 1 billionth can of spam was sold in 1959.
The 6 billionth can was produced in 2002.
West Yellowstone sponsors the 'Spam Cup' cross country ski race, with the winner receiving a can of Spam.
The SPAMJAM Cafe opened in February 2004 in the Philippines. Except for hot dogs, French fries and desserts, all other menu items are made with Spam, including Spam Burger, Spam Hero, Spam Club, Spam Spaghetti, Spam Baked Macaroni, Spam Nuggets and Spam Caesar Salad.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

OK, so I wasn't even born when these ad's ran, but I swear I was served Spam Boats as a kid. Were they the pre-cursor to spam bots? Austin, Minnesota. 9 July 2010.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Who knew just how much the Spam can has changed over the years! (Some might ask, "And who cares?") Raise your hand if you remember the key that came on the top of the can. Austin, Minnesota. 9 July 2010.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

First stop was the George A. Hormel Theater, where we watched 5 minutes of the 15 minute video about the history of Spam and Hormel. Part of the reason that we were here at all was because I mentioned Spam (in a positive way!) in a sermon several weeks ago. I heard so many interesting Spam stories after church that I had to learn more. Austin, Minnesota. 9 July 2010.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Yesterday we took a marathon tour of the southeast corner of Minnesota, starting with the Spam Museum. We didn't get as early a start to the day as we had hoped, so only had 45 minutes here. Part kitsch, part homage to the Hormel company, it began with reserved spots in the parking lot for museum go-ers. Austin, Minnesota. 9 July 2010.

Wednesday, July 07, 2010

Don't these look like purple Christmas trees? It reminds me of the year that we were given a Christmas tree by a co-worker who knew we couldn't afford one. In California they spray fake snow on trees to make them look, well, um, more Christmasy, I guess. It's called 'flocking' and it come in all sorts of colors. When the co-worker presented us with a cute little tree, all covered in white fake snow, he very proudly said, "I hope I chose the right color flocking!" We were deelighted by his thoughtfulness, but never came to appreciate the flocking phenomenon. Maple Grove, Minnesota. 2 July 2010.

Tuesday, July 06, 2010

Tired of the Great Egret photos yet? I'm feeling quite lucky to have one in my backyard, so I'm sure there will be more than a few! Maple Grove, Minnesota. 3 July 2010.

Monday, July 05, 2010

From Saturday's morning walk. As I watch this Great Egret from day to day I'm learning more about her habits. Maple Grove, Minnesota. 3 July 2010.

Sunday, July 04, 2010

From a sunset walk to the new band stand in Maple Grove. The American flag and the Minnesota flag were flying over the Cub market. Maple Grove, Minnesota. 1 July 2010.

Saturday, July 03, 2010

OK-- no bugs or creepy crawly things in this photo, you'll be glad to know! I had an early morning walk today and loved seeing these _______ (purple flowers) by one of the lakes behind our home. Still haven't bought the "Wildflowers of Minnesota" book yet. Maple Grove, Minnesota. 3 July 2010.

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Pretty cool, huh? A caterpillar with antennae on both ends! Sherburne National Wildlife Refuge, Zimmerman, Minnesota. 19 June 2010.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

See what I mean about the beetles? They were pretty amazing. The flower is a Butterflyweed. Don't have any clue what kind of beetle it is (except I'm pretty sure it's not Ringo). Sherburne National Wildlife Refuge, Zimmerman, Minnesota. 19 June 2010.

Monday, June 28, 2010

Prairie Rose. There seemed to be an abundance of beetles on just about all of the flowers we saw (if you click on yesterday's photo to enlarge it, you'll see a few there). Sherburne National Wildlife Refuge, Zimmerman, Minnesota. 19 June 2010.

Sunday, June 27, 2010

A trip to Sherburne National Wildlife Refuge to see Bald Eagles didn't result in any bald eagle sightings (did see a nest, though), but did result in lots more lovely wildflowers and a bunch more birds. I think I've decided to invest in a "Minnesota Wildflowers" book so that I can I.D. some of these. Zimmerman, Minnesota. 19 June 2010.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Trumpeter Swan #1: Beautiful sunset, isn't it dear?
Trumpeter Swan #2: Mmmghggmm.
Maple Grove, Minnesota. 16 June 2010.

Friday, June 25, 2010

This trumpeter swan seems to carrying on a conversation with a duck family as it swims by. Maple Grove, Minnesota. 16 June 2010.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Trumpeter Swan. One of three that hangs out in the neighborhood lakes. Maple Grove, Minnesota. 16 June 2010.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

This trumpeter swan appeared to be entertaining (preaching to?) some ducks. Maple Grove, Minnesota. 16 June 2010.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

In the 'hood: an otter was enjoying a late-evening swim. Maple Grove, Minnesota. 16 June 2010.

Monday, June 21, 2010

This great egret dove to capture a small fish, and in an instant was enjoying appetizers. Maple Grove, Minnesota. 13 June 2010.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

There are lots of birds in the water, too. Great Egret. Maple Grove, Minnesota. 13 June 2010.

Saturday, June 19, 2010

We were headed out for an evening stroll around the lakes (camera in hand, of course) when we just happened to see these birds fly over. Maple Grove, Minnesota. 16 June 2010.

Friday, June 18, 2010

The last in the trip-to-Taylor's-Falls series. I'm not sure what this (or any of the other wildflowers, for that matter) is, but the raindrops are a nice touch, aren't they? We're already planning our photo adventure for tomorrow, now that we have a whole new palette of possibilities to consider. Taylor's Falls, Minnesota. 12 June 2010.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

If you double-click on this image, and look very carefully at the uppermost flower, you'll see the Minnesota state bird-- the mosquito. They were loving the several days of rain that we had last week. Taylor's falls, Minnesota. 12 June 2010.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

More wildflowers from our Saturday visit to Interstate State Park. Taylor's Falls, Minnesota. 12 June 2010.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

We encountered many wildflowers on our visit to Interstate State Park on Saturday. I was sorry not to have had a little more time with this one, but it was raining pretty steadily by this point in our walk. Taylor's Falls, Minnesota. 12 June 2010.

Monday, June 14, 2010

I especially liked this pothole-- I should probably save it for a Valentine's Day post. Taylor's Fall, Minnesota. 12 June 2010.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Yesterday we had the pleasure of visiting Interstate State Park, along the St. Croix river, about an hour north of the cities. It is famous for rock formations known as potholes. This one is about 12 feet around and of unknown depth (the holes naturally fill in with dirt, so they don't know how far down the dirt goes before it turns to rock). Taylor's Falls, Minnesota. 12 June 2010.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

"Look ma-- no hands!" Or roots, it seems. How a tree THAT big can survive with virtually no roots is beyond me. And it wasn't the only one, either. Taylor's Falls, Minnesota. 12 June 2010.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Saw this spectacular sunset last night, just as I was arriving home. The lake is home to a lot of waterfowl (including an egret who likes to hang out in the tall grass at the lower left) and is directly behind my house. Maple Grove, MN. 9 June 2010.

Tuesday, June 08, 2010

Finally-- a photo from Minnesota! I was blessed by a recent visit from my friend Bishop Christopher Senyonjo. Having him as a house guest gave us an excuse/opportunity to explore the greater Twin Cities. This was taken at Noerenberg gardens, a lovely garden on the northern shore of Lake Minnetonka. Orono, Minnesota. 27 May 2010.

Monday, June 07, 2010

This is one of my favorite photos from the LA ordinations. It was during the "prelude" before the service. Several of the local native American tribes offered blessings-- this is actually a photo of one of the large screen monitors (with the assembling multitudes down below). Long Beach, California. 15 May 2010.

Sunday, June 06, 2010

I realized recently that I hadn't posted anything here in ages. Things have been a bit busy with a move from Kalamazoo to Minnesota, but I do have a few photos that I've been meaning to get up here.
This is from Bishop Glasspool and Bishop Bruce's ordination. I was blessed with a good seat, thanks to Katie Sherrod and Bruce Garner. I was traveling light, so only had my new Canon G11, which I'm still getting a feel for.
Long Beach, California. 15 May 2010.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

I had purchased a new point-and-shoot camera (for those occasions when lugging my "real" camera around isn't feasible) the week before leaving for LA, but hadn't had a chance to put it through its paces. That old shutter lag issue reminded me why I won't be trading in my DSLR anytime soon! Huntington Beach, California. 14 May 2010.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

I had a meeting in LA last Friday, so spent the night before in Huntington Beach. It was delightfully warm (it was in the 40's when I left Minnesota) and wonderfully sunny-- perfect for a stroll on the beach to watch the surfers. Huntington Beach, California. 14 May 2010.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

One last shot of the trillium. Kalamazoo, Michigan. 26 April 2010.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

There's a whole row of lilacs at the church, near where there is some major road construction going on. I'm hopeful that the bulldozer drivers can tell the difference between a lilac bush and a pile of dirt... Texas Corners, Michigan. 26 April 2010.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Here's a trio of trillium... Kalamazoo, Michigan. 26 April 2010.