Tuesday, September 27, 2011

You know I love good illustrations.. . . .

Les McClain, I have posted some of his stuff before and a link to his site is on the left.
(Whoops, my other left)

But loved this one showing
before (work in progress)


and after (finished).



Friday, September 23, 2011

Third times a charm or Spring, spring, spring. . . .



They say the third time is a charm. And I guess it was. After two less than great starts at camping, we tried again this last week.

We arrived late at camp in Round Springs and had a late dinner. Followed by a visit from a skunk.
Daughter was amazing when told to hold real still and not move, or scream, even with the skunk checking out the bottom of her chair, while she was still in it. Her face was a mix of fear and knowing.
But she held it all together and the skunk left.
That night it was, 'Let's go home!'. By morning it was, 'I hope we see more skunks."
The morning showed skunk tracks all over our car. Having gotten up in the night, I know at least four visited us.

Interest soon turned to a katydid that found our table in the morning.
It stayed for a very long time.
Not being one who loves bugs, I find it interesting that, now, trying to help daughter get over her fear of bugs, I am becoming quite interested in learning what they are.




We had taken Elmo and friends
and their camper along to provide
entertainment while. . . .
. . . mom cooked a breakfast of eggs and bacon.
Yum!
Weather was great.
Night had been cool and morning wonderful.
Mom and daughter getting ready for adventure.
First stop of our day was the spring the camp takes it's name from, 'Round Springs'
It is really amazing how many springs Missouri has.
The spring state. And also amazing is how many are in southern Missouri.
Round Springs water bubbles up quietly out of a sink hole.







A wonderful blue.



Nearby mushrooms, something else I never bothered to learn about till I wanted daughter to learn.

The greens around the spring pond, just a little
down stream, are incredible.


Next we ventured over to one of wife's favorite places, 'Rocky Falls'

Before we went to explore the falls we had lunch in the parking lot picnic area.
While dining a group of really nice motorcycles and a beautiful old car pulled into the lot.

Guess which is our car.
Nice!
Rocky Falls is this great mound of rocks with water gently cascading down the boulders, . . . most of the time. Last time wife and I visited it was after much rain and it was just a muddy boiling cauldron.
A little help please.
Dad nervously watched while daughter jumped from rock to rock, mom right behind her.

Beautiful pond at the base.
Great watercrest and swimming, and
a large lily-pad also.
This days adventures ended with jumbo franks over the barbie.
Next morning Elmo and crew entertained before breakfast.
Happy faces mean pancakes and sausage were great.
First spring on the second day was 'Big Springs'
Which it was.
Never, ever, use a path when a
wall will do.


And more fungi.

Near the end of the day, we visited the prettiest spring, "Greer Spring'.
It takes a little more effort to get to and is quite remote but it is fantastic.
Hunt around because there are two springs in this spot.


Our final morning brought rain, so Elmo and crew played in the back of the car while mom and dad packed up camp.


I hope we didn't pack up this fellow.

Sampling grape juice at St. James winery on the way home.
Yes, it really was just juice. Yea, I know, she looks to happy for just juice, but it was.

A great couple of days camping.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Monday, September 12, 2011

Summer memories are made of these. . . .

Everyones summer memories should include visits to lakes, and beaches and swimming docks.
I know mine are, and I hope daughters will be.
This past weekend started with the discovery of a lone Cicada, one of the few we still see.


















Then, Sat. afternoon I had to go out to the cabin to start some work on the stove for winter and drove by a cabin I had forgotten about and had not seen for several years.













Although in a very bad state, the roof is somewhat intact, so the main structure still looks pretty good.
The thing that is really interesting about this cabin is that with much of the siding gone you can really see how they were built and added onto.

The original stucture is the lower right hand part, the lower part of the two story section.



Either part of the orginal structure was removed to add the second story, or, more than likely, it was orginally a story and a half with a frame additon added later to make it a two story.
You can see where the lower logs had been whitewashed at one time, the first attempt to make the place look more 'modern'.
Below you can see how the 'third' room was just butted onto the original house. Note the plaster lathes on the interior wall. Also notice the rocks between the logs to hold the 'Chinking'.



















A real neat history lesson in rural building.

Sunday afternoon daughter and I got out to the cabin again and walked to a nearby lake.
The lake is large and very seldom used. Late evening we can have it to ourselves.
She has not been swimming in it yet, but loves the beach.

Dig and dig and dig!


Haul buckets full of water to make. . . .


. . . a big soup with stick carrots, mussel shell mushrooms, sand salt and pepper and rocks for potatoes. 


Some day she will swim out to the dock and feel the slimmy anchor cables and jump off of the dock into the sometime cool, sometimes warm waters.


But for right now, the sand and sand pies, and sand castles are pretty cool.

















Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Hardly any labor Labor Day weekend.

What a great Labor Day Weekend.
The kind you participate in hoping your kids will
hold on to the memory as they get older.
We started Sat. morning with catch up shopping and then yard work.
After cleaning up we headed out to my brothers annual Dove Feast.
This is usually held in a field on the farm where he is allowed to hunt, and at the end of a week hunting they invite out friends and family that are connected with my brother and the farms owners.




Surrounding the feast area are acres of corn rows.

















Old farm equipment lends atmosphere to the surroundings.
You can’t beat the colors and texture of old wood and metal being reclaimed my mother earth.






























The kids had a great time playing ball or just running around.















Of course, the best is getting to ride around in some of the carts used by the hunters.















Wife got to catch up with family.



















My brother and his family always go all out in the food preparation department, and with a few like talented friends, put on quite a spread of Cajun delights. Dove included.
















A cold front was making its way through the area near dusk and offered some wonderful cloudscapes.



















Once it got dark, the kids had a blast running around with glow-sticks.














Daughter and all were very happily tired by the time we got home.

Sunday morning we headed up to wife’s family farm, which is always a blast.
















Our daughter almost always knows she is going to get to spend the day running around with favorite cousins,














. . but this time there was also the treat of seven new kittens.















The weather was so wonderful, with the afternoon high in the 70’s that we spent most of the afternoon sitting outside and talking.
Wife and sis-in-law did some repairs on grandma’s cushions.














Grandpa’s been living in this house since he was one and it is always good to get him talking about the farm and the area when he was growing up.



















Not much healthier for kids than spending the days playing outside.


Monday we finished our yard work and I got to run out to the cabin with the brush, and took a nap on the porch.