Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Another Year Passes By and it don't look good.

Well, it is the day before new years and I have to stop and wonder about what this year has brought. It certainly has brought on a case of the uncertainties.

I don't feel as good about the world as I did to start off 2008. With so much war going on and the instability of our nation, I can't help but wonder if 2009 will not bring more of the same. I believe that we are looking at some dark times to come for America. Joblessness on the rise, declining wealth, crime on the rise; all signs that things are not good.

I believe that there may be a resurgence in religion, common sense spending and a modest lifestyle that we haven't seen in this country in over 40 years.
Perhaps the fear and uncertainties we are feeling will reshape the American way of life.

I believe that with these troubled times will come a sense of community and neighbors helping neighbors.

Oh, do not get me wrong, I believe there are those that will lose much in these times. But it is important to remember that by losing these things around us like homes and cars and jobs, we will learn to hang on to and cherish the things that really matter to us; like our health, family, and friends.

Our grandparents made it through a similar time years ago, and it made them tough, smart and resilient. We sometimes speak of them as "they didn't have much but they got by", or "he worked hard to bring home those few dollars to support the family", or "the family only had enough money to get us A pair of shoes once a year". And we hold these statements up and say," They survived, they've seen it all, they were tough". An we are somehow proud of their accomplishments, being there and living through it.

And now we are there, on the brink of reliving those days again, but we are soft. We are used to having all of our things, and to be without any of them we feel we just can't function. Perhaps we are on the verge of a "New" America. One that realizes that we can get by with less. We can become a more frugal America. Perhaps even a more environmental America. I hope that after we have reached the other side of these bad times; and we will get there, its a matter of when; we will be a "Better" America, a more "Sensible" America, an America our grandparents could be proud of.
God Bless You and Good Bye 2008.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Christmas Spirit

Tonight, a few thoughts about the Christmas Spirit.

What is the Christmas Spirit? Is it lights and tinsel? A tree and carols? Or presents?
No, I thing it is something deeper than that, although these are the things we associate with Christmas and the Spirit of Christmas.
Many times, we feel drained by the hustle and bustle of the holidays. We lose sight of what the Spirit of the season really means. We get caught up in the superficials of the holidays; what presents to buy, who's hosting the party this year, what are we going to bring to the gathering, what time are the kids' school plays, who's picking up the in laws from the airport. The list goes on and on. All these little things pick, pick, pick away at our brains until we are just worn down by the whole season.
When we stop; really stop to think about what's important what really matters when we take it all away; only then can we see the Christmas Spirit.
I believe two stories really exemplify the Christmas Spirit. The first is "It's a Wonderful Life" and the second is "A Christmas Carol". If you have not seen either of these movies, I would highly recommend them if you are running low on the Christmas Spirit or lose sight of what it really is.

Let me tell you what I believe the Christmas Spirit is:

I believe that the Spirit of Christmas is a rebirth of the good within all of us. A new chance for us to do good things for one another. A chance to connect to new lives and reconnect with old friends and family. I believe that it is the rebirth of hope. The hope that there is a better tomorrow. I believe that it is all about sharing. Sharing times with family and friends and also sharing with those we don't even know to make their lives better; a little brighter. I do not believe that this Spirit is limited to the Holiday Season, but can be observed year round if we so desired.
It is so easy to wrap our Spirit up and place it in the closet with the lights and decorations once the holidays have passed and we get on with our daily lives. But my hope; my hope is to keep that little flame of Holiday Spirit alive and carry it with me all through the year and make this world a better place for all I meet. And I hope that all who read this story will think about what I've written here and entertain the idea of keeping the flame of the Spirit in your heart and help me to make this a better place for all.
You may not agree with all that I have written here, but at least, now I have you thing about what your definition of the true meaning of the Holiday Spirit is.
Too all, a Happy Holidays...

Monday, December 8, 2008

See, this is a Christmas Cactus

This was my mom's christmas cactus as seen at thanksgiving. It really is a beautiful plant. Although this guy may be several years old. You know they hide their age very well.

This is my brother on the phone talking to my sister in Montana. You don't see him on the phone evry much, only when family calls.

This is a picture of my brother's new girlfriend, and her sweetest day's present. It's not flowers and it's not candy, but baby, those clay pigeons better watch out.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

French Lick Trip

Here's a house we saw while in Spencer Indiana on our way to French Lick Casino. We were eating at a fine place off the square in Spencer called Chambers. It's a nice home cooked buffet. While eating there I noticed this house across the street. After lunch I had to go across the street and look at it. There is a feature in this picture that caught my eye. Can you pick it out? It's not something you see every day. Do you see it?
This a picture from the concert we were attending at the Casino. He's the legendary Country and Western singer Charlie Pride. My wife just loves his music, and we go to see him whenever he's in the state somewhere. He was entertainer of the year in 1971.
This was a picture froma display in one of the halls of the hotel showing some of the products from the French Lick Springs Spa. Back in the 1920's, this hotel was noted for it's mineral waters and people from across the country would come here for the soothing waters. Mainly, it was hard mineral waters filled with sulphur. Boy, does it smell, but people used to bathe in it for medicinal purposes.
On our way back from the Hotel, we saw a large bell tower along US-50 in Shoals and stopped to see what the inspiring building was. It was the historic society building for Martin County. Unfortunately it was Sunday and the museum was closed. Maybe we'll make another trip there to see what's inside.
Here's a picture of the gardens behind the hotel at French Lick. It was very nice and in the gazabo behind the fountains was what was left of one of the springs. The closer you got to it the more it smelled of sulphur. It sure was a nice and quiet Sunday morning.
This is a picture of one of the spiral stair cases in the parking garages next to the casino. It was very decorative and really stood out in the bright sunlight.
This was a part of the old stairs and garden wall in the gardens area. It was much nicer that the picture describes.
I just threw this one in as it added to the fall season. Enjoy.

Friday, October 10, 2008


Tonight's item is touch, or feel. I've provided two pictures for tonight, and they deal with texture. One I took while sitting at my desk, the other is from a vacation I took last summer. I'll let you decide which is which.

Thank you for deciding on senses week. You all continue to amaze me at how your requests expand my thinking about my world. I hope we can do more soon.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Today is Sound day...
Aaaah.. the pictures of sound. What a concept. I had several ideas for this day, but not enough hours to produce what I wanted. I had envisioned a man hard at work wearing a helmet and ear plugs working with a chain saw. Unfortunately by the time I got home, it was after dark. I also saw with my minds eye a pair of lips whispering into an ear. But I believe that both my ears and lips were camera shy. I had to think more along maybe less artistic lines.
So without further due I give you pictures of sound....

This is the old Regulator that is in our dining room. It chimes the half and the hour. On most quiet nights, you can become quite mesmerized by the constant tick, tick, tick of this wind up giant. As a side note, I traded a fellow several Civil War Tokens for this beauty. I've received far more enjoyment from this clock than I ever would have from those tokens. A very good trade indeed.

Also another item that reminds me of sound is the radio. Not a new CD playing micro stereo, but an old AM, wood cabinet, tube radio. The one that my grandparents gathered around to listen to the radio programs like Amos and Andy, or the Lone Ranger, or FRD's fireside chats about WWII. The star of every Americans living room long before the invention of the television.

These are the things that I think of when I think of sound...

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

I went off in another direction as most would have thought of food.
My idea of taste, is also referred to as style.
Originally I thought of taste as the catch slogan for so many Smoking ads back in the 1960's.
When I went back to find one to add to my pics, I found many cool fashions or "tastes" of the day. Perhaps I haven't put forth my best photographic effort, but I thought you might get a kick out of what was thought of a cool back in 1969.
Enjoy the ads...