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Showing posts from June, 2013

Donica Knight

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***** We went to a show at the PC amphitheater last night. Performers included Donica Knight and the Little River Band. Donica was fun to watch and I enjoyed her performance. Her style, as Maria Osmond used to say "is a little bit country, a little bit rock'n roll". You missed your chance to see this dynamo in Phenix City, but I am sure you will be seeing a lot more of this Prattville, AL singer in the future.   ***** This is Donica doing a cover of Bob Seger's "Old Time Rock and Roll". Enjoy. **** *****

Only...WOW

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The colors in that 'flotation device' reminds me of A&W Root Beer. Now I think I need a root beer float. Hope y'all are enjoying your Saturday.

The House that Love Built

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***** The Ronald McDonald House of West Georgia. Very nice place to stay if you have a sick child at the hospital, which right across the street and the cancer center is right around the corner. They have a wonderful, large kitchen, rooms for watching TV, videos, and playing games. The bedrooms are comfortable and the volunteers are friendly and helpful. For a more complete explanation of this charitable organization, follow this link to the wiki page. TGIF everyone. *****

St. Elmo

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***** St. Elmo is a historic residence on the National Register of Historic Places, located in MidTown Columbus, Georgia at 2808 18th Avenue. *****
Colonel Seaborn Jones drew all the plans for his home and called it El Dorado, land of beauty. The house was begun in 1828 and completed in 1833. The materials used to build this house, with the exception of the marble and the mahogany, were taken from the property itself. A small lake now fills the place where the clay was removed. Colonel Jones brought his wife and children, a daughter and a son, in 1833. ***** ***** In 1833, Henry L. Benning, an aspiring young lawyer, wrote a friend: “Above all things (I advise if you desire ease and happiness) marry. Marry a lady of accomplishment, i.e. worth $100,000. It will be better than quibbling. I am anxious to experiment at least.” In 1839, Benning, for whom Fort Benning is named, married the Colonel's daughter. Many historic persons were entertained at El Dorado among them were President …

Magnolia Tree and a Gas Lantern

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***** In older Columbus neighborhoods, you can still find gas lamps lining the streets. This lantern is on private property and it doesn't appear to be working. Magnolia trees are another staple in southern yards. Both of these are in the front yard of the historic home, St. Elmo. Come back tomorrow and I will show you the house.
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Relaxing Along the Chattahoochee

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***** I always seem to relax when I'm down by the river...or lake...or any body of water. I guess that most people would say water has a calming effect on them as well. The sound of the water rushing over the rocks, cold and clear. Many local people over the last couple of years have said that they would not eat the fish from or swim in this river, but I think they are referring to the river of old, when the run-off from the mills and the garbage from Atlanta polluted the river. Local groups have spent years cleaning up the garbage along the river bank and the Columbus water works tests the river three times a day: low flow, high flow, and low flow receding and they say the water is clean. As a non-expert, it looks clean to me and I would not be afraid if I happened to swallow a mouthful if I happen to fall out of a raft. Happy Tuesday. It's been a long day and I am heading to the rack. *****

The Big Chicken - Cafe 431

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***** I love advertising kitsch. One of these days I am going to map out the roadside ephemera and take a road trip to photograph it all. I want to rent a classic convertible Cadillac (for comfort) or a 1963 Corvette Stingray Convertible (make that candy-apple red, please) and hit the road. Actually, any classic convertible will do, but this is my day dream so I get to pick the car. ***** Anyway, back to the chicken. He is about 6 feet (Foghorn Leghorn, anyone) and resides in the median in front of Cage 431. The restaurant is open for breakfast and lunch. I have never eaten there, but the day I stopped to take this shot it was lunch time and they were busy. I may have to check it out one day...but it will have to be a Saturday. To hard to get there for lunch on a weekday. I am sure they serve down-home Southern cooking, which is best eaten on a Saturday anyway because you will need a nap after. \ *****

One, Two, Three

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***** In Phenix Plaza shopping center, a lot of changes are taking place. Chattahoochee Whitewater has taken up residence and appears to have a booming business. The question, "how long will it last"? I am sure a long time. Since opening day, they have taken over 2500 rafters over the Heaven's Gate and Cutbait rapids. The new put-in is not complete and that will add another set of rapids. *****  ***** Appearing in stages are 5 murals. This was the first to be completed. At least I think its finished. I took the first shot before I left for Minnesota. I took the second shot on Thursday and the final shot on Friday. Our rafters appeared overnight. *****  ***** I like the mural, but the blond appears to be topless and the others appear to be zoned out...maybe suffering from too much sun...or beer...or fun!!! This mural depicts the wild life found along (and in)  the river (pun intended). We have teen-agers, turtles, fish (Loch Ness-sized), frogs, snakes, and something lu…

Yellow Spiney-Backed Orb Weaver and Some Really Good Bokeh

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***** This guy has been spinning his web in our tree for a couple of days now and I figured it was time to get out there and take a shot. How about that bokeh shining through the leaves? ***** Spiny orb-weavers is a common name for Gasteracantha, a genus of spiders. They are also commonly called Spiny-backed orb-weavers because of the prominent spines on their abdomen (cf. genus Isoxya). These spiders can reach sizes of up to 30mm in diameter (measured from spike to spike). Although their shell is shaped like a crab shell with spikes, it is not to be confused with a crab spider. Good news for arachnaphobes: Orb-weavers' bites are generally harmless to humans. ***** *****

Great Blue Heron Wading in the River

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***** Like a surfer he stands waiting to catch the perfect set. ***** He must be young because I was able to walk within 30 feet of him and he still stood there. Normally, they will fly off as soon as they catch movement or if you get within their safety zone. He must have been distracted by the rafters across the river and not paying any attention to me. ***** Great Blue Heron are adaptable and are common throughout the United States and Canada.In the southern US to the Pacific coast, the birds tend to stay in one place. The rookery is about 1/2 mile upriver from this spot. They nest in trees and and in bushes next to the water, often on islands. I have showed you the rookery previously on Discover Island here and here. You can see the nests best in the fall. *****

Today's Lunch

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From Country's BBQ. Our team won the character contest during team appreciation week and our prize was a catered lunch for our entire department. The food was delicious and the weather cooperated; a nice breeze and not a drop of rain in sight. Life is good. The menu included: fried fish, chicken fingers, French fries, hush puppies (the best ever), cole slaw, sweet tea, and dessert (chocolate pecan pie, banana pudding, and buttermilk pie).

Romalea guttata aka the Ugliest Grasshopper Ever

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***** I don't like grasshoppers because their feet are sticky, they jump up on you, and sometimes they fly. I had never seen one of these before (common name: eastern lubber grasshopper) so I had to catch a shot, but they seriously grossed me out. They were hundreds of them and they were all wiggling  around in the grass ... and oh, I just can't think about it anymore... giving myself the heebie jeebies. Anyway, this is a nymph, about  1.5 inches. Full size they are orange/gold/green and can be up to 3 inches in length. They are commonly seen in North Carolina, Tennessee, Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, Arkansas, and Texas. *****

S'mores

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***** Not just for kids!!! ***** As a kid I went for a charred outer layer and the seriously soft center of the marshmellow that was hot enough to melt the chocolate to an oozing mess. These days I am happy with a golden glow and the marshmellow just hot enough to soften the chocolate. Yes, there is chocolate in there, you just can't see it because of the oversized marshmellow created especially for making s'mores. ***** S'mores, shorthand for 'some more', are a popular treat in the US. They originated with the Girl Scouts and are made of graham crackers, herseys milk chocolate, and marshmellows. They are a favorite treat for young and old when sitting around the camp fire.  ***** S'mores must be 'cooked' over an open flame; a microwaved s'more just will not do. If you interested, National S'mores Day is August 10. *****

Barn Love

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***** I like barns. I don't take alot of pictures of them because there are not alot in our neighborhood. However, while driving thru America's heartland you see a lot of barns; all different styles. Some with a cupula, some with multiple cupulas, low-slung lean-to styles, and the more traditional barns with a hay loft. We even saw one stone barn, now that had to be expensive to build. Must have been a pretty well-to-do farmer. I would have loved to stop and shoot a few, but if I was going to get to my Mom's in a decent driving time, I could not stop...at all. I did catch this one. it was near our hotel stop for the night. Maybe I will have to go barn searching closer to home. *****  Taken in West Franfort, IL

Spoonbridge and Cherry (and a Cherry Picker)

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***** I was a little disappointed when I got to the Sculpture Garden at the Walker Art Center and found this cherry picker screwing up my shot of the spoon bridge. I've waited a long time to get this shot and on the day I visit I discover that someone forgot to park the equipment properly. But when life hands you lemons, you make lemonade and it is what it is. So I give to you, "Spoonbridge and Cherry and Cherry Picker". I didn't catch the joke until I got home. ***** Happy Father's Day to all you fathers out there. Dad, thinking of you today. *****

Basilica of Saint Mary

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***** From the pedestrian bridge near the sculpture garden at the Walker Art Center. We are packing up today to head home tomorrow. I will be posting sporadically (if at all) over the next few days and will catch up with everyone when I get home.

Dandelion Fluff

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***** We have been working hard at my Mom's house. Sorting and cleaning out. We have a pile for a yard sale, making multiple trips to the recycling centers. They really make recycling complicated here. One place takes scrap metal, you have to go to another location to recycle paper and wood. None of them are open on the same day of the week and they all have wonky hours. I have to admit, numerous recycling options are available and much better than home, but if you don't know the ins and outs it can be complicated. They even publish a book, the "Recyclopedia" to help get you started. *****

Nesting Under the Porch

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***** My dad built this ledge for the robin to nest under the back porch. I used the zooms lens with a 1600 ISO and additional exposure compensation to catch these three robins waiting for mom to bring them lunch. I sat on the riding lawnmower for at least 15 minutes waiting for mom to jump up with the worm, but she kept dancing around trying to call me off. I have to admit she won!!! I didn't want to disturb her any further, so I moved off so she could feed her babies. ***** Can you get tennis elbow from lifting and cleaning? If so, I think I have it ... ouch. *****

Little Free Library

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***** I think this is such a cool idea. I think I am going to get Tom to build one for me at home. I always needs something new to read and maybe others do to. ***** Interested in the organization or building you own library box, check out Little Free Library. *****

Windmill in the Heartland

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***** Mendota Hills wind farm in Lee county, Illinios. This farm has 63 turbines that stand  approximately 214 feet tall. Each of the blades are 85 feet long. This was the first full-scale wind farm constructed in  Illinois in 2003. This site produces enough electricity to power 13,000 homes  *****

The Three Bears

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***** Along highway 94 in Wisconsin near 'the Dells'.  *****

Minnesota-Land of 10,000 Lakes

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After 2 days of driving, we made it to Minnesota. The trip was uneventful; in fact, the most excitement we had was sneaking our ferret into our hotel room last night. We are used to the balmy south and we already know that we didn't bring enough warm clothes. The forecast calls for temps in the 60's and rain.

Kentucky Barn

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***** Green grass, red barn, blue sky, white clouds. Doesn't get much better than this. It's a long drive to Minnesota, but if we had flown I would have not been able to take this picture for you.  ***** We're done driving for the day and checked into a hotel for the night. Because we cut this driving day short we will have to get up at the crack of dawn for an EARLY start tomorrow.  ***** I will catch up with everyone after I reach my final destination.  *****

Theme Day - the Beauty of Decay

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***** This is my submission for theme day; the Beauty of Decay. Click this link to see more examples from CDP bloggers around the world. *****