Saturday, December 31, 2011

Christmas Portrait Photography

Christmas Portrait Photography was fun this year; so many interesting expressions in costume!

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Cinematic History

The current holiday films are finding their place in 'reel time'.  Our family traditions find us sharing at least one movie during the Christmas season.  It's not the shows, of course, but time together - making memories.  As for the movies:  The re-make of  'Footloose' is fun, but Robert Downey Jr. and George Clooney are always interesting:  'Game of Shadows'; 'Descendants'.

Friday, December 23, 2011

Wednesday, December 21, 2011


                                                        A Christmas Tree.
                                            With dark green needled memories.
                                               Of time that's gone so fleetingly,
                                               Yet lives for always deep in me.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Blue Ridge Mountain Berries

If you've been to Virginia in the past 30 years you are likely familiar with Robbin Thompson and Steve Bassett's ' Sweet Virginia Breeze', perhaps the unofficial state song.  The tune and lyrics often dance in my head and put a spring in my step; so last week I was not surprised to hear 'the Blue Ridge Mountains Tend to Set Me Free'  singing sweetly in my ears as I hiked the mountain trails in the rain and fog.  Yes, they do set me free...

Monday, December 12, 2011


Don't walk behind me; I may not lead. Don't walk in front of me; I may not follow. Just walk beside me and be my friend.
Albert Camus

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Cold and Windy

                            With sub-freezing temperatures in the forecast the lake will be frozen soon.  
                 Despite the cold and wind we decided to take advantage of open water....and freezing fingers.

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Rain and Fog

Paddlers came from as far away as Minnesota and Wisconsin for the annual Skunk River Paddlers Holiday 'Waffle Paddle' despite rain, cold and fog.  Eleven paddlers stuffed ourselves with 'Dad's Waffles' at the Ames Arboretum, then bundled up like Abominal Snowmen and headed out in the gray fog for a 6 mile paddle down the Des Moines River.  We ended our afternoon at the Flat Tire Cafe - along the High Trestle Bicycle Trail, where Dave and Travis kept us laughing with their crazy (but true) tales.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

O Tannenbaum


Monday, November 28, 2011

Yule Tunes

In No Particular Order, Some of the Best:

1. Ave Marie - Josh Groban
2. Thankful - Josh Groban
3. I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus - John Mellencamp
4. Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas - Sister Hazel
5. Joy - George Winston
6. Where Are You Christmas - Faith Hill
7. Elf's Lament - Barenaked Ladies
8. Mary, Did You Know? - Kimberley Locke
9. Run Rudolph Run - Sister Hazel
10. Angels We Have Heard on High - Josh Groban
11. Jesus Child - Cambridge Singers (John Rutter)
12. Sleigh Ride - Boston Pops Orchestra

Sunday, November 13, 2011



River Rock photo by John Pearson.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Many Names

                     Puma, Cougar, Panther,Mountain Lion ~ whatever name you choose, she's just another animal trying to survive in a world with fewer and fewer resources....

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Rock Art

Petroglyphs in Valley of Fire were created by ancient Pueblo farmers - Anasazi -  from the nearby Moapa Valley.  These art drawings are plentiful and intriguing, but the 'rock art' sculpted by Nature with wind and water is even more spectacular.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

California Dreamin'


Sunday, October 23, 2011

Just Having Fun

Everywhere I went this weekend people were out enjoying our unusual warm weather.  I was able to put in 25 miles on my bike and almost 20 miles in my kayak; although a full wet suit was required for paddling, the warm sun and gusty winds felt wonderful.  Soon the snow will fall and we can get out our skis and ice skates, but for now I will treasure every warm day that comes our way.
I read something at Starbucks the other day that made me think of winter with a new perspective:
'With shorter days come longer nights'
....hmmm, that doesn't sound too bad. 

This red Current Designs kayak isn't mine, but the camera liked the brilliant red.  I'm still plotting and researching my next kayak.....maybe it will be red. 

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Let There Be Peace On Earth


                                            The 'Peace Tree' - Lake Red Rock, Knoxville, Iowa

Monday, October 17, 2011

Potpourri, Music, Photography, Fun and Friends

West End Architectural Salvage and The Cherry Street Market

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Nature's Music

           Last evening was unusual for October in Iowa, but the breeze was welcome on the water in the warm night air.  Sounds of music from an anchored sailboat wafted in the wind....and then, what sounded like thunder growing increasingly louder erupted from a dark place on the lake off to our right.  Hundreds of gulls, terns and pelicans who had been resting undetected suddenly took to the sky, their wings beating with a pulse that overwhelmed the soft jazz coming from the sailboat.  Nature's music is always interesting, and often surprising.

Moonlight Magic

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Sing - Off

 With all it's bells and whistles I'm not always sure how my big TV works, but there are times when I do make an effort to get through the buttons to watch/listen to the big screen.  Another 'Sing-Off' season has started and is worth the effort.....come to think of it 'Glee' has probably started again too....

Monday, October 3, 2011


With the 'VerminWhisperer' (see out of town this weekend things got a little out of control at the Lake.  Dejected that I was unable to convince an injured beaver to paddle back to the parking lot in my front hatch, I was somewhat pleased later in the day to have an opportunity to rescue a very large corn snake from oncoming traffic.  Unfortunately the ingrate tried to bite me as I attempted to hurry him off the highway!

In general, it was a great day to be on the Lake for all of God's strange creatures.