Cold Floor

Cold Floor

It dropped in to the 20s last night.  My client complained that I have a cold floor.  I guess the little heater couldn’t keep up last night.

Note to self:  Next time place the heater where the client will stand.  At least that way the floor will be warmer there.

They say we’re supposed to have a cold, but dry week.  Perhaps on Monday I can get the leaves raked.  Right now, most of them are in piles.

Out of Gas

As soon as the shoot was over my big heater ran out of gas.  Time to go swap the cans.  I saw BJ’s has a really good price.

Church Tomorrow

I’m still not adjusted to not being the ward organist.  A couple of times today I found myself wondering what the hymns are for tomorrow.  I had to remind myself not to worry about it.

Roku

I just discovered our Roku has a Roku Channel.  It has quite a few free movies.  A few we have not seen, while there are others we haven’t seen in a while and might be worth re-watching.

Getting rid of Dish Network and getting the Roku was the best decision.  It is so much cheaper than all the other options.  Yes, you have to have Internet access, but we’d be paying for Internet either way.

Nasty Weather

Nasty Weather

We are experiencing nasty weather today.  I got a call from two tenants with roof leaks.  Add to that a leaking pipe at another property.  Uhg.

The winds really blew last night.  The weather service warned about falling trees because of the high winds coupled with saturated ground.  We didn’t have any trees fall in our yard.

My hopes were to get leaves cleaned up today.  However, it’s too wet and nasty to attempt to suck up the leaves.  It will wait until things dry up a bit.

Allergies

My allergies really bother me this fall.  I bought some Nasalcort and found it doesn’t work as well as Flonaise for me.  Fortunately I found a bottle of misplaced Flonaise and I’m back to feeling a little relief.

Route 66 Photos

I’ve been working on processing and retouching images all day.  My brain is yelling, “I need a break!”  While another part of me is yelling, “You need to finish this!”

The blog for Route 66 is here.  I managed to post 2 recaps today.  Both centered around Saint Louis.  (And, so will the next one be about Saint Louis.)

This was a fun picture.  I was watching shadows and reflections on the walls of the arch.  Both Paul and this lady were wearing purple shirts, so I grabbed the shot while I could.

copyright 2017 db walton
Paul at the Gateway Arch

There are times I wish I could just take pictures all day, and then process them at night.  Funny how responsibilities get in the way.  Frustrating how unplanned emergencies (like leaky roofs) get in the way too.  Nasty weather I can deal with.  The solution there is to work on processing images shot in fair weather.

AirBNB

AirBNB has been pretty good to the Beckwith Mansion.  Things have slowed.  (Tourist season runs from April 1st to October 31st.)   I suspect we might get a few calls around Thanksgiving and Christmas.

Potato Dig

Potato Dig

Our little potato dig coughed up about 35 pounds of potatoes.  Sisters Cahoon and  Henrie  helped us.  We also dug up the horseradish.  I’ll be making lots of horseradish sauce.

There was a lawnmower in the back yard.  I have no idea where it came from.  Perhaps one of our renters knows.

Route 66 Page

I’ve redesigned the Route 66 page.  It is more blog-centric now.  Because it is, I hope more people will visit it, and re-visit it.

My goal is to do at least one recap per day, and at least 5 days a week.  The latest is on Day 4.  Day 4 probably has two more days worth of recaps.  I’m writing much more as I recap the days.

Leaves

I’m looking at the leaves in the yard.  Tomorrow I have a shoot.  Saturday I have a shoot.  Sunday is church.  It looks like the leaves will wait until Monday.

I plan to use the lawn tractor with the catcher.  It is slow doing it that way, but very efficient.  Elizabethe wants the leaves on the potato hill.  I don’t know what will keep them there, but we’ll try it.

Since the missionaries are now to stay in their own areas, we cannot have all of them over to help.  I plan to just work on it next week a little at a time.

True Hero

True Hero

When I was a kid there were true heros.  John Glenn was a true hero, and today at age 95 he passed away.  Glued to the TV, in February of 1962 I watched with excitement as John Glenn became the first man to orbit the earth in the Friendship 7.

Sometime later the Friendship 7 was on display at the local Albertson’s in Pocatello.   My parents took me to see the capsule, and I was amazed that a grown man could spend 5 hours in the tiny craft.  It reminded me of a trashcan.  Disappointed in the size, I questioned whether it was the real thing or a sub-sized scale model.

While I didn’t agree with his politics, I was disappointed when he was named one of the Keating 5.  However, I was greatly relieved that my childhood hero was cleared of any wrong doings.  I wish we had more men like John Glenn.

 

Jim Metz

I also learned my friend and fellow photographer Jim Metz passed away last week.  Jim was 68.  When I first moved to New York and became involved with PPSNYS, Jim was one of the first people to befriend me.  Jim would always invite me to come sit by him at meetings.  He will be missed.

Leaves

The sisters and elders came over to help rake the rest of the leaves.  They were amazed at the volume of leaves.  Of course, with nearly 2 acres, there are a LOT of leaves.

copyright 2016 db walton
Sisters Crofts and Barrett Raking Leaves

We started on December 1st to live off our food storage.  I made a soup with what we had canned, what we had in the fridge and freezer.

copyright 2016 db walton
Hot Soup for Lunch

Beat

Of course, after driving the tractor around and emptying the bins, I’m beat.

Weather Cooperated

Weather Cooperated

The weather cooperated today!  The missionaries scheduled to rake the leaves today, and the weather cooperated all day.  We had 4 of the 6 missionaries helping.  The other two were under the weather.

The leaves are wet and heavy.  While the advantage is they don’t blow around as much, the disadvantage is they are HEAVY.  The missionaries struggled to pull the tarp.

copyright 2016 db walton
A Tarp Full of Heavy Leaves

 

copyright 2016 db walton
Leaf Dump

 

The pile in the front yard is big, and there is a decent sized pile behind the house too.

copyright 2016 db walton
Sisters Dumping Leaves

After working at the leaves for 3 hours, we took a lunch break.    I found a coupon for Mark’s Pizzeria and we got a “party” size pizza and a couple of sides dishes.  It all went quickly.

copyright 2016 db walton
Pizza, Missionaries, Maureen, Marilyn and Bethe

 

Tablet Arrives

Just as we’re starting lunch, my tablet arrives.  The box was all beat up.  I took pictures in case the tablet has damage.  Fortunately it did not.

Because we still had leaves to rake, I unpacked it, plugged it in to charge, and went back to work.

Evening with the New Tablet

I spent the evening with the new tablet, and  I painted a quick landscape.  The tablet did not come with a stylus (pen), and so I sampled every one we had laying around the house.  Ironically, my finger worked better than any of them.  I will research styli and find out which one other Spectre users like.

copyright 2016 db walton
Outside the Grove (Sacred Grove)

Another Packed Day

Another Packed Day

Today was another packed day.  It was even busier than yesterday.  At one point, I came in the house and Elizabethe asked if I was done.  I said, “Nope, just stopping to use the bathroom”, and I was out the door again.

When all of that was done, I came home and pulled the tractor out and drove around in circles blowing the leaves all to manageable piles.  I discovered that after a while, the wall of leaves gets too tall to blow with the tractor.  Before long, it was dark and I had to pull the tractor into its little garage.

It has been another warm day, but overcast and looking like it is going to rain.  In fact, they say it is a high percentage chance that it will rain tomorrow.  If it does, I guess we’ll cancel the missionaries coming to help with the leaves.

While I was out today, I was a little early for my appointment so I stopped in to Tractor Supply to kill about 15 minutes.  I discovered their close-out table and found some nice stocking stuffers for Elizabethe.

Later, I stopped by the other Tractor Supply on my way to make deposits.  They had a totally different selection of closeout stuff.  I picked up a few more things for Christmas gifts.  I’m getting Christmas shopping done early while things like this are still available.

 

Walking My X-T1

Walking My X-T1

Some people walk their dogs.  Walking my X-T1 was my thing to do today.

My X-T1 is my new camera and I hopped in the car and went for a drive with it.  Okay, I said I went walking with it.  I did… when I got out of the car to photograph something.  And, towards the end of my little drive I had the strength to go for a walk into the Sacred Grove where I took some photos.

So, you want to see what the Sacred Grove looks like “early in the spring”?

Here it is…

 

copyright 2015 db walton
Sacred Grove Early Spring 2015

We don’t get leaves on the trees until late spring/early summer.  The buds are just starting to appear.

So, when you think about the First Vision, think of the grove looking more like the above photograph.  But, no matter what time of year, the Sacred Grove is always a wonderful place.

After all, the Smiths lived there for a few years.  I would imaging Joseph and his family visited the grove often all through the year — not just the spring.

In 1820, they were coming out of a mini ice age.  Well, the winter of 2015 was a mini ice age for us.  In 1815, the eruption of Mt. Tambora put the world in a mini ice age.  How interesting that it was 200 years ago.  Anyway, given the climate conditions this last winter, the grove may have very well looked like this in the spring of 1820.

In the seven years I’ve lived here, the trees leaf out and the shade canopy starts around June 1st.  The full canopy isn’t developed until July.

Sucking Leaves

Sucking Leaves

I woke to the sound of sucking leaves.  I heard this noise out back, and I wasn’t able to go check it out, so I sent Elizabethe to check.  It turns out things were dry enough that they guys we asked to do our leaves were outside working.  They had their leaf blowers and lawn mowers running full-tilt.

There is kind of an unnerving feeling when people do work you usually do.  Perhaps I’m a bit of a control freak and I need to learn to be less of one.  My biggest fear was… What if they run over the cable and cut it.  Then, I won’t have Internet access!!!  (Yeah, I’ve got to call Time Warner about that.)

We bought a B.J.’s membership.  $40 for 14 months.  It sounded like a good deal.  Nearly $200 later… yeah… it’s still a good deal.  We managed to get a few food items to carry us through the winter, as well as a good price on batteries and a couple of hams.

I got to drive around in one of those electric carts.  Those things can turn on a time.  I wish they would go faster, but I understand that would be a safety issue.

 

 

Down Came the Leaves

Down Came the Leaves

Some friends of ours took a railway tour of the Adirondacks to report the leaves were gone.  And the rains came and down came the leaves.  Leaf peeping, as they call it around here, is a risky proposition.  All it takes is a good rain to knock them to the ground.

Fortunately here, some of the leaves are still green and clinging.  The others are mostly on the ground.  And, since we haven’t had a frost yet, the colors aren’t as rich.  It takes a good freeze to lock in those rich reds and orange colors.

 

copyright 2014 db walton
Leaves on the Ground

Most of my day was spent working on wedding images and preparing them for the web site.  That takes about as much time as it does to photograph a wedding.

I was almost done with the wedding photos when I realized I still have one more card in one of my cameras.  I would have caught it eventually, but I’m glad I remembered it now… and not later.

My class for next Saturday, Super One Day, through PPA, has been cancelled.  I didn’t get any registrants.  Part of the problem is too many people requesting ON-LINE instruction.  There are many topics you just can’t learn on-line.  Of course, this would explain why so many photographers really stink at it.

The reason why on-line isn’t good is simple:  There is no feedback.   For example, say the on-line instructor tells you how to light this picture.  You go out and do it to the best of your remembrance of what the instructor said.  Who is going to tell you whether you got it right or not?

I really worry about the world of on-line college degrees being earned.  I look back at my college experience and I would never have been the type of computer programmer I was had it been on-line teaching.  Likewise, I would not be the photographer I am today without some face-to-face instruction.

Wind and Autumn

Wind and Autumn

Wind and autumn don’t mix.  You have these beautiful leaves on the trees and the trees are about to cast them off, when a wind comes along and blows them off.  Usually it is the rain that knocks them to the ground, but this week it appears the wind is going to do the job. I am glad I went to Vermont when I did and got some autumn color photos while I was there.

After taking a walk this afternoon the after effects took their toll.  Walking around in that wind with the autumn pollen, leaf debris and other stuff in the air resulted in some miserable sneezing, coughing and wheezing when I got inside.  That’s another thing — allergies seem to wait until you are indoors before they flair up.

I spent a good amount of time talking to another photographer who is going to use my studio as an example in an upcoming webinar.  It will be interesting to hear his recommendations.

I made a casserole tonight using some pork, mixed vegetables, rice and some cheddar cheese soup.  I don’t know what happened, but I used to like Campbell’s Cheddar Cheese Soup, but any more it taste like a thick cornstarch mixture with no flavor.  I won’t be buying it any more.  I had to add a bunch of grated cheddar for some flavor.