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Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Photo Blogging Challenge (Dec. 2014): ‘Tis the Season

'Tis the season, indeed! Another year coming to a close. Football season winding down. More family gatherings. December is a fun and busy month. My annual trip to NYC got cancelled and that had me a little bummed until I saw the rain and the protests going on that week. Still, it always kicked off Christmas for me. Other than that, it was a pretty usual December in my world.

This was the end of the first season in the new stadium for my Baylor Bears, they became the Big XII Champs for the second year in a row. While we were left out of the final four due to our out of conference schedule, it's fun to see our scruffy little private school team making headlines.
McLane Stadium

'Tis also the season of parties. My Tulsa office always throws a big shindig. I like that the lady on this one looks like she is dancing like Peanuts characters do in the Charlie Brown Christmas special.

December also brought orchestra concerts and piano recitals along with opportunities to force the boys to pose for me.

And the decorating and the eating and the gift giving... We host the Christmas Day festivities at my house, family, in-laws, out-laws, steps, cousins, nephews and nieces are all welcome. My mom comes in a day or two early and works her magic on the tables. They always look so nice.

Speaking of family, it's always a good opportunity to get a shot of these good looking cousins. We are taking this swing set down this year as it is falling apart; so one last opportunity to ham it up.

We were attempting to relive this photo from 2006 when they were much smaller. Will, the pouty fellow in the vest had recently popped his big brother, John, the guy with the shiner, with one of the swings. Cousins, Lili and Evan, look on.
More Goobers
2014 was a great year that has gone by way too fast. I'm loving the monthly photo challenges and can't wait to see what PJ has cooked up for January. Check out his blog if you want to participate or if you want to see what the rest of the folks have share. It's, as always, a 'lil hoohaa. Until next month.

Monday, December 01, 2014

Photo Blogging Challenge (November 2014): Where the streets have no name

I just remembered I haven't done this yet so I fired up the computer and see the link up closes in 1 hour and 41 minutes. I'm glad I got up. Where oh where does the time go. This month's theme is Where the streets have no name.  Let's see how I did:

I book-ended my month with a trip to my favorite place. My family bought some land about an hour away from here shortly after I was born. I love spending time here. And when I'm with my boys and my dad, it's even better.
A different kind of Homecoming

My oldest is 14. He loves this Jeep. He has been ready to drive for 13 and half years. He is finally getting behind the wheel and loves it!


This was just a nice quiet spot I was hanging out in watching the sunset.

And another spot that definitely has no name.

John has been giving names to places on the property. And, I'll admit, that over the years I have too. The biggest problem is if no one else knows where you are talking about, the name doesn't help much. We have my Dad's (Poppa's) Stand, Suicide Hill, and Turkey Holler from my generation. John has Bone Lake and the Pig Stand. I've mapped spots using my GPSr in the past. Maybe I should share those with the others one day. Or maybe it's more fun to guess.

Go check out the other entries at a lil hoohaa blog and think about joing in on the fun in December!

Friday, October 31, 2014

Photo Blogging Challenge (October 2014): Photographer’s choice

Another month, another photo challenge, another hard decision. Photographer's choice was the theme. I was trying to make it harder than I needed to so here is my collection:

October finds us in the middle of football. I took the opportunity of an away game and fabulous to hunt out some new caches placed around the new stadium and grab a picture or two.


October is also fair time in Texas. We have the Heart of Texas Fair and Rodeo here in town. My boys are getting big enough that they want to roam alone so I have almost no photos from this year's fair. But we also have the State Fair of Texas going on in Big D. Fletcher's Corny Dogs are a must eat and no trip would be complete without your photo with Big Tex. He started out as a Santa Claus in a little town called Kerens. You can read his history here. He also burned up on the last day of the fair last year so this is a brand new Tex.

We have Football, Fairs, how about Fall. I have to leave town to see any real fall colors. I took a short trip to Southern Pines, North Carolina for some fall golf.
Quiet Carolina Morning #fmsphotoaday

We had a partial solar eclipse visible this month. It was just about sundown so I was able to get out and take some shots. This was using an IR filter stacked with an ND8 just to knock it all down and have some latitude with ISO and aperture. The large sunspot on the left of the cluster is supposedly twice the size of Earth.partial_solar_eclipse_5392

Finally, October is Hallowe'en. If you've followed PJs blog long enough, you may have read my case for Hallowe'en post from a few years ago. I like to go all out for Hallowe'en and I always have. I've got my boys helping now. And as always, we'll be live streaming (or live screaming) all night long!
Four graves ready for fright. #fmsphotoaday
So there are this months five. There are so many more over at PJs blog. Join us, won't you. One of us, one of us, gooble, gobble...

Thursday, October 02, 2014

Photo Blogging Challenge (Sept. 2014): Black and White

Where did the time go? It's already October! Spetember's theme was Black and White. I hope you enjoy my selection.

Jem is our black and white kitty. He fetches a ball and also likes to toss it to himself. That is when he is not ripping the paint off the wall or sleeping on my workout clothes.

This guy is the new baby of a coworker. I thought the black and white stripes would go perfect.

We spent an afternoon fishing at the marina. This is my dad's sailboat. I liked the font.

The family took a day trip down to Austin to see a special exhibit about dogs and cats in art. This was in the Blanton Museum.

I needed one more photo and was running out of time. I intended on converting this to black and white but I liked this as it was. I also liked it without correcting the WB. You can see that on my flickr page. I couldn't decide which I liked better. This one won. I need to play with the nifty 50 more and shallow dof.

There you have my five.  My world has been really busy. I hope to have a little more time to devote to next month. Check out the other participants over at a lil hoohaa blog.

Saturday, August 30, 2014

Photo Blogging Challenge (August 2014): Colorful

The theme for PJs Photo Blogging Challenge this month was Colorful. I like a theme open to interpretation! August was a busy month but I whittled it down to five favorites. Let's get started, shall we?

We ended July and started August at the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness, specificallly the Charles L. Sommers Base of Northern Tier High Adventure Program. We spent about six days paddling the boundary waters between Minnesota and Canada and had a fantastic time. There were many great sunsets and sunrises.


How could I not include Rainbow Rock in a post with a colorful theme? This was found on our last day on the water. The type of rock is not native to the area and had to have been carried some distance. Northern_Tier_2014_8020260

Back home, my friend Nancy at Lula Jane's keeps raising the bar with delicious, home grown meals.
I just almost didn't come today. I'm glad I did. Tomato pie! Yum.

We celebrated our friend's birthday with a colorful cookie cake. Happy Birthday, Alex!
Happy Birthday, @alex_crump !!!

I rounded August off with a colorful sunset along my evening walking route. It's always a great way to end the day.

Check out other participants at PJs blog A 'lil Hoohaa and think about joining up next month!

Saturday, July 26, 2014

Photo Blogging Challenge (July 2014): Baseball

I'm posting this a bit early this month. I'm about to head to Northern Minnesota to Northern Tier for a week on the Boundary Waters. My text is subject to change and I apologize for the hastiness. But I am literally walking out the door in 3 hours.

This month's theme was Baseball. I had an idea in mind and got to a decent start but I'm afraid I got a little busy. Let's take a look at what I put together.

I called this one Stealing Home. I thought it needed a nice pretentious name.


 More from a forgotten field.


I played t-ball here when I was a kid. My kids did too. They lost interest after coach pitch.


I had the opportunity to work with Nolan Ryan some years ago at his ranch. After a long day of shooting commercials for Dairy Queen, he went into his barn and pulled out a bucket of baseballs and sat with us and signed one for each of the crew. 


This is a small shrine to baseball in my office. The ball was signed by the 2005 Baylor team that is in the photo behind it. That was their last trip to the College World Series. Hopefully they will be back soon.


Monday, June 30, 2014

Photo Blogging Challenge (June 2014): Vehicles

The June theme for PJ's Photo Blogging Challenge was vehicles. I knew it was going to be a challenge because I was spending a good portion of June on a backpacking trip at Philmont Scout Ranch in the mountains of New Mexico. Then sitting down to try to pull out five ended up being the challenge, so I have a couple extra this month. Sue me! Here we go!

On one of our practice hikes, I came across this nice looking Impala. I did a bit of shopping to remove the back of my truck and some wires. I really liked this car.


We did actually run across some vehicles at Philmont. These were at Baldy Town. John had seen them on their web page and was looking for them during the trip. I'm glad we found them for him. The boy loves cars!


Just hanging out at the airport after a trip to Dallas for a retirement party for a couple of coworkers.


This truck belongs to a local coffee shop, Dichotomy. They bring it and their delicious coffee to our farmer's market every Saturday. It goes great with the crepes! The coffee, not the truck.


This weekend, we went up the highway a little to West, Texas. You may remember it from the news last year when they had the horrible fertilizer explosion. It's a little more than 20 miles from home; we heard the explosion. Anyway, West is a small community of Czechs with loads of good food. After dinner we were checking out the old M-K-T depot when the train whistle blew. So now I have planes, trains, and automobiles covered.


Bonus Boat Shot: Boats are vehicles, no? My oldest and I went for a little paddle this evening. I shot this as we were packing up. I liked it too much not to include it.


And final fun time bonus, Saturday morning on the way to the farmer's arket, I spotted a for real DeLorean running in the wild. Get in the car, Marty, no time to explain!

DeLorean in the wild! #twitter

So there you have it, another month and another group of photos. Won't you check out the others of at the a'lilhoohaa blog? You won't be sorry. Why don't you think about participating next month. The theme will be up tomorrow (if you are reading this June 30.) Until next month...

Friday, May 30, 2014

Photo Blogging Challenge (May 2014): Fun

Here we go again. I see the reminders that posting day is coming but posting day has come and I'm just getting around to putting something together.

May was indeed a fun month. We had some scout adventures, my kids wrapped up school for the year, the oldest finishing up and moving to a new challenge in high school next year, get-togethers for Memorial Day weekend, and pools opening! So, without further ado, my entry in a lil Hoohaa's Photo Blogging Challenge for May: Fun.

I started off May with a trip to Dana Point, CA. I had fun golfing with my sister and my other sister before our conference started.

My Big Bad Bill turned 12 this month so we celebrated with a mess of his friends at the local hibachi. They had a great time watching the chef. Some of them had never been there.

We had four Eagle projects my scouts were working on in one weekend. All benefiting our chartered church. One of them was this Ga-ga Ball pit. The boys enjoyed their labors after finishing for the day.

And speaking of Eagle projects, while out on a Philmont practice hike, we cam across Jacob's Eagle project from last year. He has finished up his last remaining merit badges and will be ready for the Eagle board of review soon.

Finally, our 9th Annual Memorial Daze Memorial Day Gathering. A friend puts together a big shindig for film industry folks every year. I'm not in the business any more but worked with most of them over the years. It's the only time of the year I see some of them. It's always a good time; lots of food, drink, and fellowship late into the night.

That's it. Fun is easy. I'm fortunate to have a lot of fun in my life so the only challenge here was culling the herd. Please check out the other participants photos by visiting PJ's blog at a 'lil hoohaa. I look forward to next month!

Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Photo Blogging Challenge (April 2014): Smile

It's April already, the grass greening up and the nice temps are enough to make me smile. And, speaking of smile, that was our theme for the Photo Blogging Challenge for April. Let's get started.

Spring brings out the Texas Bluebonnets and our annual taking of the Bluebonnet Photo. The making of is never all smiles but the final product usually is.


Buckwheat Zydeko and Robert Randolf opened up our outdoor concert series Brazos Nights. The drummer's smile is what drew me to this shot.


Cousins together for Easter brings lots of smiles; add golf carts to the mix and you have even more. Will has on socks because he was wearing a chicken suit. Sadly, I have no photos of that.


The Scouts visited the National Museum of the Pacific War in Fredericksburg. They have a Living History event that we have been trying to get to for some time. This guy was right out of a war movie. Such a character. The boys had a great time. The museum is fantastic too.


On the way home we stopped by Enchanted Rock State Park for a quick hike and what turned to be a rigorous cave exploration. I tore my pants and lost my wallet in the cave but a couple of my Scouts went back in and thankfully found it pretty quickly. They were all smiles after we made it out of the cave.


You can see all of my photos from the museum and E Rock by visiting my Flickr set. And, I have a collection of my Bluebonnet pictures throughout the years that I enjoy visiting.I encourage you to visit the a 'lil hoohaa blog to see the rest of this months entries. And why don't you join in next month?

Tuesday, April 01, 2014

Photo Blogging Challenge (March 2014): One

March went by fast. The theme for this month was One. Let's get started.

My mother-in-law's birthday is March 2, we were going to be out of town so we celebrated early. One candle multiple cakes of multiple flavors.


We were gone because I had a conference in Aruba. Not too bad of a way to spend a week. This sailboat came by at the same time every day.


This was either hole number 1 or hole number 10, I can't recall. Either way, they both have a one and I did not get a hole in one. 


One slice missing from the pie.

Beautifully ordinary. #fmsphotoaday #2014hoohaa365

These guys are taking off just after we land every time I go to Tulsa. I never get tired of watching them.

Since my first photo was actually taken on February 28, here is a bonus. One leg, enjoying a scenic lunch while backpacking with my scouts.


So there is March. I need things to slow down just a little and by little I mean a lot! Check out the other amazing photos over at the a 'lilhoohaa blog. This brings to end a full year of Photo Blogging Challenges. On to the next year!