Monthly Archives: May 2016

Sprained Thumb

Sprained Thumb

It turns out Elizabethe has a sprained thumb.  I took her to the orthopedic office.  They x-rayed her hand and determined nothing is broken.  She now has a brace she has to wear for the next several weeks.  It completely immobilizes her sprained thumb.

Since we were out that way, and since there is a Taco Bell close by, we stopped at it for lunch.  There’s nothing like getting your Taco Bell fix.

The young lady who took our order was very much on the ball.  She was working like crazy while a few others just seemed to be in their own little world.  She asked if we’d go on-line and take the survey.  Given how hard she worked for it, we’ll do it.

This was good to see because some of the other Taco Bells in the area seem to have a complete don’t care attitude — especially the ones that have a K.F.C. joined to them.  I’m not sure if it is the franchise owner or the corporation, but they really need to get their act together.  At least this young lady today had the right attitude, and if every employee at every Taco Bell were that attentive to the customers they’d see their bottom line increase.

The temple tonight was pretty busy.  I met a fellow photographer’s son there.  We had a nice chat.  He was on his way to BYU and traveling with a mission friend from Sweden.



I was asked to speak about the role of music and reverence in our meetings.  Today being the 5th Sunday, we had a combined meeting during the last hour of the meeting block.  I talked about why I play hymns when playing prelude music and read from the General Handbook of Instructions regarding prelude.

The real test will come in two weeks.  (Next week is Stake Conference.)  It will be interesting to see if our meeting impacted the reverence before Sacrament Meeting.

I bought a roasting chicken the other day, and after church I rubbed it with annatto and garlic.  I laid it on a bed of potato wedges and roasted it.  The potatoes absorbed the drippings.  It was so good.

We are constantly introducing the sister missionaries to new foods.  When I told them we were having ‘pappas y pollo’ they gave me a scared look.  When I explained that was Spanish for potatoes and chicken, they looked quite relieved.

We had some guests last night.  It turns out he grew up in Fair Oaks and graduated from Bella Vista.  I began listing off people and he knew a good number of them:  Greers, Snows, Beals, Millers and more.  What a small world it is.

Elizabethe’s hand is still bothering her.  She has an appointment on Tuesday with an ortho to see what’s going on.


Cures Cancer

Cures Cancer

There is an intelligence measuring stick on social media.  It works like this… if share a post about something that cures cancer, you’ve been duped.  There.  I said it.  Aside from being cruel to those who have cancer, let’s think about such claims.

We wouldn’t have cancer

We wouldn’t have cancer if these claims were factual.  Here’s an example…

If baking soda cured cancer, nobody would have cancer!  Think about it folks.  Baking soda is available at the dollar store and even if it took a box a day, people with cancer would gladly spend the $30 a month for baking soda.

I could go on with things like this.  I think the scariest one is coffee enemas.  When I mentioned this one to my wife she commented that we know two people who believed this, tried it, and both died from cancer.

Let’s Think

Let’s think before forwarding these e-mails about cures for cancer, or posting them on social media.  When a cure is found, it will be heralded all over the world.  In the meantime, let’s not give false hope for those fighting this disease.

More Goofiness

There is more goofiness in other areas.  One was a device that claims to cut your electrical bill.  (Actually, there are several of these.)  You can’t conserve or create energy.  It’s a law of physics.  Energy is harnessed, not created.  For example, hydro electric power is converting the power of a moving river in to motion which is in turn converted to electricity through a generator.  Solar power is converting the sun’s rays in to electricity.

Others have to do with losing weight.  Ah, you’ve got to love them.  I love what my doctor said once.  He explained that a person’s propensity to be fat or skinny is heredity.   For anyone to lose weight it is a simple formula of calories out have to be greater than calories in.  (Yes, some people have faster metabolisms.  You can’t change your genetics, but you can increase your metabolism through exercise, but then only to the extent your genes will allow.)  So, all of these “fat burner” pills and stuff like that… yup, we’d have a lot of slender people if they really worked.

Diet sodas cause weight gain.  Seriously?  Calories in have to be less than calories out, as the doctor said.  That being the case, it isn’t the diet soda that causes the weight gain, it is all the calorie packed food you eat with it.

Finally, nobody gives away money for posting stuff on Facebook.  Quit falling for it.




Bathroom Fix

Bathroom Fix

Our bathroom fix is coming along.  I’m glad I didn’t decide to do this myself.  We hired Shane Schumann Construction to do it because they know what they are doing.

Here’s an example… or two, or three…   Elizabethe wanted a radiator cover.  I could have never got the mitered joints to line up.  They put this together quickly and the joints are perfect.  Now that ugly cast-iron radiator in the bathroom won’t be such an eyesore.    (I’ll post a picture once they are done and everything else cleaned up.  We didn’t have an exhaust vent either and I would have never figured out how to exhaust it to the outside.  Somewhere along the line a previous owner had removed one of the doors and patched where the hinges where.  We had them get a door and put the door back where it was.

It’s skilled things like that which I wouldn’t attempt.  When I see how nicely the door opens and closes my thoughts are, “Had I done that, something would be scraping or not shutting right.”

When it’s all done we’re going to change bedrooms from the one by the kitchen to the one at the east end of the house.  Ever since we bought a king-sized bed the east bedroom has been too cramped.  Plus, Elizabethe doesn’t like that tiny tub.

I went looking for a tripod that I could carry in my bicycle at Best Buy.  I’m glad I did because I was getting close to ordering on on-line and got to see it in person.  Three words:  piece of junk.  I know there are people who rave about Monfrotto tripods.  I own one and two Monfrotto heads and I’m not impressed.

When I got home I did some research and found others complaining about the Monfrotto and I decided to get a Sirui 0005X.  It came down to that or the MeFoto Backpacker.  I decided on the Sirui after reading two people who bought both and did indepth reviews.  Both put the Sirui a tad bit ahead of the MeFoto because it was lighter, stronger and had a couple features the Sirui didn’t have.

It’s supposed to be here tomorrow!

copyright 2016 db walton - bathroom fix

Top Hat (used as a display in the Smith Frame Home)

Exciting Morning

Exciting Morning

I had an exciting morning.  I was asked to go take some photos for two of my favorite people – Don Enders and Bob Parrot.  Don is a retired historian who has done a lot of research and work for the church.  Bob is a forester who cares for the Sacred Grove and knows a lot about lumber and 19th century home construction in this region.

We met at the Welcome Center and walked together to the Smith Frame Home where Don and Bob pointed out the various details that needed photographic documentation.  In addition to taking the photos, I was like a sponge soaking up all this knowledge from these two men.

Now, just a little about the Smith Frame Home…

This house was built in the 1820s, or started, I should say, by Alvin Smith.  After the Smiths lost the farm, other owners made significant changes.  One changed turned the house in to a Victorian style home.  Then in 1997 the church brought it back to its original form.

In August, 2001, the church received an award for the restoration.  The Preservation League of New York State gave the 2001 Excellence in Historic Preservation Award to the Church for the restoration of the Joseph Smith Sr. frame home here in Manchester.  (I know, it is easy to call it Palmyra, but it is actually in the Township of Manchester, NY.)

What Did I Photograph?

Stuff like this notch in a beam…

copyright 2016 db walton

Notch in Beam in Smith Frame House

And, these saw blade marks in one of the planks…

copyright 2016 db walton

Sawblade Marks

I am very anxious to read what Brother Enders will be writing.  These pictures tell a story, but he will put them in historical perspective.


Phone calls are coming in about Hill Cumorah Pageant room rentals.  We’re slowly filling up.  BUT, we do have rooms available Friday the 15th and Saturday the 16th!!!  These usually fill first, but for some reason, we have rooms!  Call us at (315) 359-5280 to reserve a room.  We’re more affordable lodging  than the hotels, inns and B&Bs.

Eight Gauge

Eight Gauge

Eight gauge wire is pretty thick stuff.  When it is stranded wire, it takes a powerful soldering gun to get it hot enough to apply solder.   Twist two of them together and you have about a 1/4″ thick glob of wire to heat up.  My poor soldering iron was having a hard time with that.  So it was fixing a battery charger for some friends.

These bulky wires were too big to fit inside the housing for the plug.  Then it hit me!  Solder a third wire in there and make a Y with the wiring.   That worked.  Once it was all done the charger indicated it was charging the batteries.

My morning was spent mowing just the front law.  A rock about the size of a grapefruit made its way in to the grass.  I hit it and it bent one of the blades.  Now my lawn has a tapered scalp cut.  This is not good.

I cannot get the blade off.  Thus, I’m going to have to buy a breaker bar.  Hopefully a 36″ breaker bar will give me enough leverage to remove the nut that holds that blade.

Tomorrow I will head to Harbor Frieght Tools to get a breaker bar.



At today’s CSM Photographer’s meeting I trained them about calibrating their monitors.  Not all monitors display equally… but the ones that area calibrated do!  That’s what I did today.  (I also do mentoring as part of my photography by db walton llc business.  Click on the link and it will take you to read more about mentoring.)

I spent the entire morning putting together my power point presentation for the training.  I found it is really difficult to get pictures when you’re calibrating because screen captures don’t really show what’s going on.

After the meeting was over I attempted to take a nap.  Wouldn’t you know it the phone kept ringing.  Ugh.  90 minutes laying there and just as my eyelids were feeling heavy, the phone would ring.

I finally got up and decided I might as well get ready to go to the temple because I wasn’t going to get any rest.  (Next time I’ll turn my phone off so the calls go to voice mail.)

We had a busy, but always wonderful, night at the temple. We managed to get some of our family names done.  We’re working on my Green line.

Philly Temple

I see the Philly Temple is now accepting reservations for the open house.  It calls around the time my girls will be visiting.  I really want to go, but we’ll have to see how we can fit it in.

copyright 2015 db walton

Philadelphia Temple

Tour Guide

Tour Guide

Your tour guide today will be Elder Walton.  Today was a first.  Elizabethe and I were the tour guides at the Book of Mormon Publication site from 9am to 4pm today.

The full-time missionaries had a training meeting in Fayette and we were asked to substitute at the Grandin Building.  We were supposed to open the building, but the facilities management group had someone there working who already turned on the lights and stuff.

All was very quiet until about 1pm.  About the time I finished my lunch, two women came in for a tour.   As soon as I finished their tour, a group of 3 came in.  As soon as I finished that group, 4 more came in.

Then, without notice, people started arriving while I was still giving tours!  Working creatively, Elizabethe started people off on the first floor, queued them by the elevator and I would finish their tour on the upper floors.

Suddenly, I heard the voices of some of the sister missionaries.  I guess their meeting was over.  I looked at my watch and it was almost 4pm.  Wow, did those last 3 hours pass quickly!


There were a few questions this tour guide was not able to answer.  I’ll have to research them.  They are…

  • How many of each letter would they need in order to typeset all 16 pages (the number of pages in a frame)?
  • Did they dry one page at a time on the drying racks?  Or, did they stack them?

Later Than Usual

Later Than Usual

Reservations are rolling in later than usual.  I think part of the reason was a malfunction at a linking website to our site.  However, they got it fixed and now we’re receiving traffic and phone calls.

I say this every year…

If you are planning to come to Hill Cumorah Pageant, make your reservations early.  The earlier, the better.  We start for the next year as soon as pageant is over.  Others may start taking reservations 6 months in advance.  Whatever the case may be, start early making your reservations for lodging.

Tip 2

Plan to spend ample time here.  Trying to see the church sites in this area is best done over a few days.  Also, keep in mind that this is a culture-rich area, as well as the geographic features of the area.  Within short drives from Palmyra we have waterfalls (lots of them), museums and art galleries, amusement parks and waterslides, and more.  There’s no need to rush through town.  Make your vacation all about Palmyra!

Tip 3

Eat and shop in the village (and when you go to Pageant, at the Pageant itself).  These business largely exist for your pleasure.  When visitors to pageant don’t eat and shop here, those businesses may not be able to stay open.   Since I’ve been here, I’ve see a few LDS tourist oriented businesses close because of a lack of patronage.

Tip 4

Be prepared.  Bring an umbrella (because it rains a lot), and insect repellant (the result of all the rain we get).  Getting caught in a flash shower, or being eaten alive by mosquitos, can make your vacation unpleasant.  Plan accordingly.

copyright 2015 db walton

Hill Cumorah Pageant Performance

Tip 5

Westerners, bring your GPS.  We don’t have tall mountains by which you can get your bearings.  We’re surrounded by tall trees and sometimes you can’t even tell where the sun is because you’re in a deep canyon of trees.   If the car you are driving has a compass, trust it even if your instincts are telling you different.  We’d hate for you to get lost.



Forrest Gump was one of the best movies of all times.  From it, there was a particular gumpism that I really like.  “Stupid is as stupid does.”

This little saying is so applicable on social media.  Let me give some examples…

A lady posts in a forum she bought a dedicated flash for her Fujifilm camera but it won’t work in TTL mode on her Canon dSLR.   Duh!

A guy buys a 12 volt light that has two wires — red and black.  He complains that it didn’t come with hookup instructions as to how to connect the wires.   Duh!

Too many of these to list… but people who post pictures of them doing something illegal… and then get busted.  This is a double-duh!

I’ve adapted his little saying in to, “Evil is as evil does.”

There’s so much evil in the world today.  Some think if you legitimize it by legalizing it it is okay.  (Read in to that what you may, but if it goes against God’s commandments, it’s evil.)  I won’t list the evils, but just remind yourself that evil is perpetrated by people.

Grandin Building

Elizabethe and I will be manning the Granding Building on Monday.  The missionaries all have a training meeting and they asked if we’d take their place during the meeting.  It should be both fun and interesting.