CMMC – February Pick a Topic

Cee’s Midweek Madness Challenge the third Wednesday of February is to use her picture to pick a topic (or two or more!) for your pictures. Click here to see her picture; it shows yard/gardening tools as well as a portable outhouse on a trailer with trees in the background.

Abandoned Outhouse. Neumann Ranch Dump, Montana. August 2008.

In my search for a picture (just one!) with a garden tool, I discovered photos of an old outhouse that had been hauled to the ranch dump. Tipped on its side, it’s definitely no longer in use!

Besides just general messing around with a camera in hand that day, Dad intended to dig a few potatoes. So here’s a picture of a shovel in use.

Digging Potatoes. Garden at Neuman Ranch, Montana. August 2008.

Same ranch, same characters, same intent and maybe the same shovel four years later. This time with trees in the background.

Dad Digging Taters. Garden at Neuman Ranch, Montana. August 2012.

Switching things up, I remembered an outdoor cleanup day at a church that might show some tools. To my delight, I found a photo that shows a bit of fun while getting the work done with a rake.

Caleen with Rake. Muscatine, Iowa. November 2012.

Finally, for a little winter work, here’s a broom and a snow shovel being put to good use.

John and Don Clearing the Deck. Muscatine, Iowa. December 2007.

Challenge: Stack

Stack of Round Hay Bales. Neumann Ranch, Montana. August 2012.

The scale of a stack of round bales is tough to fathom so I left the front of Weenie Truck – Dad’s name for his small pick-up – in the frame when cropping the first picture to share for Frank’s stack challenge.

Here’s a different angle – two bales high and who knows how many bales long.

One last picture, showing my nephew – then about six feet tall – checking out the stacked bales.

CMMC: February Color – Blue Green

Blue Flower, Morton Arboretum, Illinois. June 2013.

Blue-Green was the February color for Cee’s Midweek Madness Challenge. I gathered the pictures and had them uploaded to share on a blogpost, but did not get around to finishing it. (Sigh.) Though more than a week behind, here it is.

Blue Hydrangea, Missouri Botanical Garden. June 2012.
Remembering Baptism, St. John UCC, Melbourne, Iowa. January 2019.
Panoramic Awareness Pavilion by artist Olafur Eliasson, Pappajohn Sculpture Park, Des Moines, Iowa. January 2021.
National Balloon Classic, Indianola, Iowa. August 2013.

FPJ Photo Challenge: Assemble

Thinking about the photo challenge “Assemble” and with every good intention (and we know about that) to join the challenge, I took pictures while I made Valentine’s Day cookies for my neighbors. It’s past the deadline, but I thought I could still share my pictures of making sour cream sugar cookies!

Find a Favorite from Assembled Recipes
Assemble the Ingredients
Mix by Hand (see the heart?)
Find the Heart Cookie Cutters
Roll and Cut Out
Bake
Assemble Ingredients for the Frosting
Simply Frosted
Pink Frosting and Red Sprinkles
Yummmm

Wishing I could send you each a plate of cookies!

CMMC – February Close-up or Macro

Rime Ice on Branches.

It was a cold and foggy morning in central Iowa. Since Cee’s Midweek Madness Challenge today is Macro or Close-up, I put on my winter boots, warmest coat, hat and gloves before heading outside with the camera to attempt to digitally capture the frost.

Rime Ice on Needles.

These are my three favorite pictures of the morning (2/3/2021). And I didn’t even have to leave the yard!

Rime Ice on Leaf.

Hope the temperature is just right wherever you are! (Indoors, with a quilt and a hot chai latte.)

+++

2/3/2021: Just learned that the white stuff on the trees this morning was not frost. It was rime ice. There’s a difference that has to do with how it formed. Since it formed from freezing fog (think water droplets), it’s rime ice.

CMMC: Alphabet – Letter W at the End of the Word

Window. Rocky Mountain College Campus, Billings, Montana. Photo: TLClark, 12/2020.

In her post for Cee’s Midweek Madness Challenge: Alphabet – Word that Ends in W, Cee included a photo of a window with a shadow that made me think of my first picture in response to the challenge. Being able to see things through the window as well as seeing the tree reflected in the window caught my attention.

Snow. Shiloh Nature Preserve, Billings, Montana. Photo: TLClark, 11/2020.

Two pictures of snow, both taken while out walking.

Snow. Ankeny, Iowa. Photo: TLClark, 1/2021.

There’s plenty of snow to photograph in central Iowa if you don’t mind being out in the cold. We finally had a day with enough sunshine to create a shadow on the snow.

Shadow on Snow. Ankeny, Iowa. Photo: TLClark, 1/2021.

As much as I like snow – and I do as long as it doesn’t interfere with safe driving – it needs balanced with a little color. Here at home, I walk by this row quilt every day. Each row in the quilt was a free pattern from a different local quilt shop. The theme was “Home Sweet Home” and the way the designers at each store chose to interpret home still makes me smile!

Row-by-Row. Pieced and quilted by TLC.

Tuesday Photo Challenge: All You Need Is Love!

“Love” by Robert Indiana, Pappajohn Sculpture Park, Des Moines, Iowa. Photo: TLClark, 1/8/2021.

I couldn’t resist sharing this picture of an iconic sculpture. It’s not the only LOVE sculpture done by Robert Indiana so I imagine it may not be the only featured in response to the All You Need Is Love! photo challenge by Dutch Goes the Photo!

CMMC: January Pick a Topic

A few pictures in response Cee’s Midweek Madness Challenge – January Pick a Topic from [Her] Photo. All three of my photos were taken when I was in Montana visiting my parents in November and December. My topics: yellow, river, and clouds.

Yellow Building: Clarks Fork National Bank, Fromberg, MT. Photo: TLClark, 11/2020.

I took the picture of Clarks Fork National Bank in Fromberg because of the mural. But the yellow color of the building made it my first choice for Cee’s challenge.

Yellowstone River, Billings, MT. Photo: TLClark, 12/19/2020.

These two pictures were taken at Riverfront Park in Billings. It was a beautiful December morning and I thoroughly enjoyed wandering the trails and traipsing along the Yellowstone River. Figuring out which river picture to share for the challenge was a challenge itself!

Clouds over Pond. Riverfront Park, Billings, MT. Photo: TLClark, 12/19/2020.

On my way back to the parking lot, I paused to take pictures of the sky over the pond. Clouds over trees and water seem to fit Cee’s challenge.

Musing: Rainbows

It was another gloomy day in central Iowa.
Dense fog warnings for commuters.
Thick clouds hiding any hint of sunshine.

It was the perfect day to go back to bed.
But I had to take the original copy of my best beloved’s will to the attorney.

On the way home, I detoured by the Greater Des Moines Botanical Gardens.
I had no intention of going in.
Just wanted to walk along the Des Moines River (the paved path had been cleared).

This rainbow colored sculpture caught my attention.
In a landscape of white and shades of dreary, I couldn’t help but smile.
The bright colors lifted my spirits.
And left me thinking about rainbows.

A sign of hope.
After the storm – between storms – the sun peeks through.
There is a moment of calm.
An opportunity to pause, to take a deep breath.

Time to remember.
The story of the Great Flood and the bow God set in the clouds. (Genesis 9:12-16)
A sign from God. A sign for God.
That God will see and remember the promise not to destroy all flesh with a flood.

But there are still floods. There are times of destruction.
Periods of being overwhelmed.
Some as a consequence of life, of living, of being part of creation.
Many a matter of our own making. (sigh)

Yet there are rainbows.
Reminders to pause, to take a deep breath.
Opportunities to be still, to remember, to give thanks.

God remembers.
Has been been with us through the storm.
Will be with us when clouds gather and floods come.
Is here now.

For today, that is enough.

Photo Challenge: Puzzle

I’m so excited that Frank of Dutch Goes the Photo! is back with his Tuesday Photo Challenge. This week’s theme is “puzzle.” He used the word “puzzlement” in his blog post, making me think of the statue in this first picture.

“Thinker on a Rock” by Barry Flannagan, Pappajohn Sculpture Park, Des Moines. Photo by TLClark, 1/8/2021.

There’s nearly always a jigsaw puzzle in progress on the card table at my house. If you only look at the front of the pieces, this one is a challenge. But if you notice the back, putting it together is somewhat easier.

My father emails me most Sundays with a copy of “the fiver” – five intertwined Sudoku puzzles. He usually adds advice like “turn off the TV, get something to drink, and do the fiver.”

If a jigsaw puzzle or a Sudoku aren’t your thing, maybe you would enjoy a puzzle for your brain found in one of these books. (I’m a bit puzzled about the atlas being on this shelf!)

May you solve – or least come to terms with – every puzzle that comes your way this week.