What’s the White Stuff?

The gravel in the driveway was getting a bit thin, so I put about a dozen 50-pound bags of it down several weeks ago. The recent rains exposed some more muddy spots, so I bought another five bags.

The irony is that Dad used to buy gravel by the train-load, probably for what I had just paid for about 20 bags. Anyway, while I was spreading the gravel, I noticed specks of white flying by. I didn’t think it was the fireplace belching ashes, so I watched more closely. Sure enough, some of the pellets were turning into flakes.

You can click on the photos to make them larger.

The Bolton House across the street

I decided I needed to bring in more firewood, so I hauled the wagon outside, then went back inside to piddle around for a few minutes. Suddenly, I saw people in the area posting on Facebook that it was snowing.

Son of a gun, it WAS showing. Snowing enough that the ground was white and I had to empty out the wood wagon before I could load it.

Walnut waiting to become firewood

When I bought Mother’s house from my brothers, I had a list of things that needed to be taken care of. One of the first was to chop down two maple trees that Mother and Dad planted when they bought the house. One of them was so hollow that it was a wonder that it hadn’t fallen on us or the neighbor.

I asked the tree trimmer to cut some dead walnut limbs that were about to fall either on the driveway or the roof. He looked this tree over and said, “You’d be better off to let me take it down now instead of having to come back in a year or so.”

I hated to see it go, but he does this for a living. I let him haul off all the big pieces, but had him leave pieces small enough that I could cut them to fireplace length without having to split them.

Shed in a Box

In 2013, David, Mark and I built Mother a Shed in a Box to park her riding mower in. It was a lot easier for her to do that than to wrestle tarps over it.

It’s getting some stress tears in the tarp top that I’m going to have to patch up with tape as soon as it warms up.

Mother loved having these spinners in the yard so she could tell how hard the wind was blowing. This is the last one left, and it’s only a matter of time before the elements get it, too.

Gradually returning to nature

There was an old tree at the corner of the yard that died many, many years ago. Mark said not to cut it because there were holes in that indicated that it was home for all kind of critters.

Old age and gravity finally won out. It’s gradually becoming compost to feed other plants.

 Needles and flakes

The tiny ice crystals lodged wherever they could. Fortunately, they weren’t accompanied by damaging ice and sleet.

A study in green and red

The holdover red holly berries add a festive touch to the cold. It’s 18 and falling at midnight (feels like 8 degrees), and it’s headed for 11 at 6 a.m. I don’t want to know the “feels like” temperature.

Flags on Veterans Day 2016

Veterans Day flag display North County Park 11-11-2016This week, in particular, I needed to see the rows of American Flags flapping in the cool air against a blue sky punctuated with fluffy clouds. I got to North County Park just as the volunteers were starting to take the flags down before nightfall. This was taken with  Nikon D-7000 equipped with an 18-55mm zoom lens covered with a circular polarizing filter. (Click on the photo to make it larger.)

Flags in motion

A guy directing traffic made an exception for me to drive by to capture this video from the top of the hill and headed down to the highway. The video is shot with my DOD Tech DOD-LS470W dash cam. It hangs under my rearview mirror with an AmorTek SnakeMount, a cool accessory that will fit just about any camera out there.

I picked this camera because it has great low light sensitvity, it has a built-in GPS, and comes with software that will let you merge your videos with an interactive map. That’s really handy when I try to figure out where I took a picture. (I also have to confess that I put those specific links in because if you click on them, then buy something from Amazon, I get a tiny piece of the action without it costing you anything extra.)

I’m a sucker for flags

Here are other stories I’ve done about flags.

St. Mary’s Cemetery at Sunset

St. Mary's Cemetery 08-30-2015Sunday was a lazy day. I slept late, ate breakfast, went to get dressed to go out and slay dragons, but as soon as I sat down on the bed, the sheets and blankets wrapped themselves around my resisting body and dragged me down until I just couldn’t fight them off any more.

After my nap, I puttered around the house for a bit, but it was pretty late in the afternoon when I managed to actually let sunlight hit my body. I cruised around checking out a couple locations filed away as being possibilities, but they were dry today.

When I turned into St. Mary’s Cemetery off Perry avenue, it were getting close to sunset. I used the shadow cast from the cross to block out the direct sun to keep from getting lens flare.

48 years ago

St. Mary's Cemetery 08-24-1967Something kept telling me that statute looked familiar. Yes, indeed, this was taken August 24, 1967, almost exactly 48 years ago, and at pretty close to the same time of day. It had been floating around in the miscellaneous scans folder for four or five years because I wasn’t sure where it was taken.

Either my technique or technology has gotten better in the last half century because the recent photo is much better. (Curator Jessica will recognize my style at once. She’s figured out that I’m a sucker for backlit flags.)

I have an aerial photo of the cemetery in an earlier post. And, as always, you can click on the photos to make them larger.

Veterans Day Flags 2013

Bollinger County Memorial Park 11-11-2013While I was prowling around Bollinger County Memorial Park last week, I noticed flag holders along the driveways. Unlike Cape County’s North Park, these have markers honoring the servicemen and women. I don’t know if the flags match the markers, but I suppose it’s the thought that counts. Anyway, I made a note to take a look back there on Veterans Day.

Of course, to get to Marble Hill from Cape, you have to pass North park, so I had to pull in there, too. It wasn’t the greatest day for pictures. Unlike some of the other times I’ve shot the flags, the sky was mostly overcast and the wind wasn’t whipping the flags very much.

Past Flag photos

Veterans Day photo gallery from Cape Girardeau and Bollinger counties.

Click on any photo to make it larger, then click on the sides to move through the gallery. (The first two shots are from Cape County; the rest are from near Marble Hill.)

Copyright © Ken Steinhoff. All rights reserved.