Monday, August 29, 2011

Zinnia's on Parade

Fencing the Zinnias

Dear Jeni and Mary and TurtlemanFred,
Today I did a little fencing on the front walk.  The Zinnia's and Aster's were trying to take over so I bought some bamboo fencing from Sunnyside Gardens (using the Gift Certificate Card Jeni gave me) and tried to give them a little more structure.
Straighten up guys!
There now doesn't that look more orderly?
If you look at the lawn behind many of these Zinnia portraits you will see
signs of Autumn....sigh
After I staked their little hearts out I took a few portraits.
I think the yellow centers are wonderful.

A zinnia among the Garlic Chives.
The Garlic Chives came through like champions.  Maybe it is OK for Jon to scalp them....NOT!
This final shot shows the shadows they make on the sidewalk.

Oh, that reminds me.  I better go bring in the garbage containers.  Sniff.  This is sooo much more fun.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Highlights from a short trip.

Hi Nancy and Jeni, 
I took two days off last week so Brian and I could take a short trip to see some of "Montana’s Natural Wonders" (cue "natural wonder" advertising music).  I don’t think I can live long enough to see everything Montana has hiding just around every turn in the road but I'll do my best.
We first stopped at the Natural Bridge Falls Picnic area we’d read about.  We wanted to see the natural limestone bridge spanning the Boulder River.  However, we didn't read the fine print, and found that the Natural Bridge had (naturally) collapsed in 1988.  The Boulder River is busy carving out a new bridge though, as it goes underground for awhile through the limestone and then pops out again down the trail a ways.
Here it is, popping out of the limestone.
We meandered down the Main Boulder Road (MT secondary 298) for awhile, following the Boulder River.  All I can say is it’s too bad we don’t fish because it is chock-full of spots that look wonderful to fish in and even have fish if you actually care about catching some. 
Plus we saw some other surprises like this fungus - also popping out - with a layer of forest floor debris on its cap.

But we were really headed for the Crazy Mountains to camp and hike a little.  We put in to Halfmoon Campground and set up camp.  One very short hike was to Big Timber Creek Falls.

If you really want to see some action on these falls, take a look at this video.  (You might have to turn the sound down.)   
I had fun cooking in an outdoor kitchen again and we even had pancakes and bacon for breakfast.   

Note to self: get a spatula with a shorter handle - 2 ft is too long

Ahhh, civilization (AKA Bozeman).  Goodbye bug spray and sunscreen!  Hello showers, cold drinks and Yarn Shops!  Bookstores!  Outdoor Gear!  I have another Favorite Yarn Shop now: Stix.

Here's the entryway to Stix in the basement of a downtown building in Bozeman: 7 Tracy St.

And I finally found a flower book I liked so my flower pictures now will have names attached.  I hope to name all the pictures I took up on the Rims last year as well (don't hold breath).

Cirsium arvense "Canada Thistle"
We came home on the 3rd day.  Elliot was glad to see us.  We went out back to find him a piece of grass to play with and he instantly appeared to forget we were ever gone.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Day two of Fireworks Convention

jiggly camera and the center white stripe is the moon.

Dear Mary and Jeni,
Day two of the fireworks.   I was excited during the first part of the show.    I love this result.   

Moon and the beginning of a shell.

The moon and remainder of a shell.  I missed it completely!
I love the ones that rain down on you.   This one was huge.

Many of the raining type of shell exploding at once.  Fantastic.
I have a hard time catching this type of display.
Love the smoke below.
Part of the grand finale of one of the shows.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Pyrotechnics Guild International Convention 2011 - Night One

Dear Mary and Jeni,
Some photo's from the Pyrotechnics Guild International Fireworks Convention in West Fargo North Dakota.
My favorite one.   Caused by a camera jiggle.
4 at once and great colors too
A little more modern art
Blue is an uncommon color in fireworks.
Lovely  huge gold Chrysanthemum fireworks.
More modern Art.   Love the yellow and gold together.
This one I like for the smoke trails.
That is all for now.   Well except if I can get this 3 minute video to load.  Too bad their sound system kept cutting in and out during this segment.


Monday, August 1, 2011

The 5-year-plan sweater

Hello Nancy and Jeni.  I'm happy to report a major (in my mind) achievement - I've finally knit an adult sweater - and it's for ME!  I didn't mean it to be a 5-year-plan sweater - but this picture of it in process was taken in February of 2007 BGS (Before Grad School).  I must have been knitting on it for awhile.
In progress at Copperwood Court - 2 houses and 4 years ago.
I think what inspired me to finish it was finishing another piece of knitting that had been languishing for several months - Nancy Woodruff's small shawl.

Finishing that inspired me to get out this huge project.  Since it's all knit in one piece, you have to carry the whole thing around.  It's all garter stitch from Sally Melville's The Knit Stitch.  I've knit a few things from that book - scarves, and a poncho for Katie (I'll have to get a picture of that).  Ok, I'll just post some pictures of it now, because Elliot is starting to pace back in forth right under my nose, giving me an unwanted mustache of loose cat hair.  Mmmphht!
In progress in June - Elliot approves.
Bonus: you get to see the vertebra from the Bowhead Whale.