Monthly Archives: August 2019

Photo Challenge: City

Good Morning, Des Moines! Photo: TLClark, 8/31/19

Frank Jansen’s photo challenge this week is city. I’m much more likely to be taking pictures of flowers and leaves, bugs and trees so I decided to use the challenge to try something new. I went to Des Moines this morning to take pictures of the skyline and a building or two.

The top photo is looking west down Grand Avenue as the sun is coming up. Being there early Saturday morning meant I could safely stand in the middle of the road! The striped building in the left foreground is the State Historical Building; there is free parking in the garage across the street (pictured at right).

State Capital reflected on the side of the Wallace Building. Photo: TLClark, 8/31/19.

Des Moines is the capital of Iowa, so a picture of the capital building seemed in order. But I caught the reflection of the capital first!

State Capital Building, Des Moines, Iowa. Photo: TLClark, 8/31/19.

Next up is a view of downtown Des Moines from the Capital steps. It was taken with a Sony Cybershot camera which automatically brightened the entire image – it was definitely not that light at the time! Wish I had played with the manual settings on my DSLR camera.

Downtown Des Moines from the Capital steps. Photo: TLClark, 8/31/19.

Next stop was along M.L. King Jr. Parkway. I’m standing on the east end of the bridge over the Des Moines River.

Downtown Des Moines from the MLKing Jr Parkway Bridge. Photo: TLClark, 8/31/19.

The old Brown-Camp Hardware Co. building (on the left) has been converted into residential lofts. From this angle it looks like the two tallest buildings – 801 Grand and the Ruan Center – have traded places since being in the first photo!

Old and New. Des Moines. Photo: TLClark, 8/31/19.

Something is always under construction in Des Moines. Had I had more time I might have tried pictures of the many bridges – including whichever one is under construction this year!

Downtown Des Moines, looking north on 7th.

Having worked in 801 Grand back in the days when I was a computer programmer/analyst, I wanted a picture of just that building. This first photo is taken from a block east on High Street. It shows just one of the 20 or more sky walk bridges that make it possible to go from building to building in downtown Des Moines without ever going outside – a great deal on cold, blustery days of winter and hot, humid days of summer!

801 Grand and Skywalk. Photo: TLClark, 8/31/19.
801 Grand at the Corner of 8th and Grand, Des Moines. Photo: TLClark, 8/31/19.

Pink Flowers and a Butterfly at Reiman Gardens

Butterfly on Flower, Butterfly House, Reiman Gardens. Photo: TLClark, 8/23/19.

We always take time for the Butterfly Wing when visiting Reiman Gardens at Iowa State University. Before opening the door the guide told us the butterflies “are active today.” He was right – just a few of the 500+ butterflies were in the mood to pose.

Wild Rose, Reiman Gardens. Photo: TLClark, 8/23/19.

The staff was out watering the flowers, hence the water droplets on the rose (above).

Flowers, Reiman Gardens. Photo: TLClark, 8/23/19.

It was bright sunshiny day – the light was almost too harsh for getting decent pictures of some flowers. But it was fun to try!

FOTD: Yellow Flowers at Reiman Gardens

Flowers, Reiman Gardens. Photo: TLClark, 8/23/19.

A beautiful morning with no obligations was the perfect opportunity to visit Reiman Gardens on the campus of Iowa State University. Bright sunshine made for great shadows – but also meant I had to pay attention to where my shadow fell!

Flowers, Reiman Gardens. Photo: TLClark, 8/23/19.
Flowers, Reiman Gardens. Photo: TLClark, 8/23/19.

Thanks, Cee, for the Flower of the Day photo challenge!

FOTD: Flowers at Iowa State Fair

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Sunflower, Discovery Garden, Iowa State Fair.  Photo: TLClark, 8/13/19.

A week ago I shared photos of zinnias in the Discovery Garden at the Iowa State Fair. Here are a few more flowers taken the same morning. Hope they brighten your day!

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Helenium, Discovery Garden, Iowa State Fair.  Photo: TLClark, 8/13/19.

The Discovery Garden has signs identifying most of the flowers. Couldn’t miss this one!

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Disco Belle Hibiscus, Discovery Garden, Iowa State Fair.  Photo: TLClark, 8/13/19.

Another fair goer gushed about how easy the hearty hibiscus is to grow – even for someone like her who does not have a green thumb.

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Hearty Hibiscus, Discovery Garden, Iowa State Fair.  Photo: TLClark, 8/13/19.

There a small water garden complete with water lilies, cattails, and goldfish tucked into a corner of the Discovery Garden.

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Water Garden, Discovery Garden, Iowa State Fair.  Photo: TLClark, 8/13/19.

Thanks, Cee, for the Flower of the Day photo challenge!

Photo Challenge: Lock

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Three Padlocks. Photo: TLClark, 8/15/19.

With the Tuesday photo challenge of lock in mind I headed for the junk box in the coat closet.  We have a pseudo junk drawer in the kitchen – repository of stuff that doesn’t quite belong elsewhere.  But it’s unlikely to contain things like locks.

The junk box, on the other hand, has all sorts of treasures.  It’s the place to find a hammer and some nails, batteries of all sizes, a large flashlight, packing tape, electrician tape, Duct tape, superglue, string and (hopefully) locks.

But the box wasn’t in the coat closet.  When our floors were replaced in July the junk box was stashed in the garage.  I found it near the tool box and was not disappointed:  three padlocks with keys, a bike lock and a PowerLock tape measure!

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Locks in the Junk Box.  Photo: TLClark, 8/15/19.

Meanwhile, my husband was looking for his combination padlock from 1958.  We’d both seen it as things were sorted and discarded or repacked and moved for the floor project.  But the lock seemed to have vanished.

Until this morning – when it was found hiding in plain sight!

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High School Padlock (1958) – front.  Photo: TLClark, 8/16/19.

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High School Padlock (1958) – back.  Photo: TLClark, 8/16/19.

What do you routinely lock?
Your phone?
Your home?
Your car or bike?
What about your mind?

“There are no walls, no bolts, no locks that anyone can put on your mind.”  ― Otto Frank

What have you opened today?
Your mind?
Your hands?
Your heart?
What about another’s heart?

Smile, it is the key that fits the lock of everybody’s heart.   ― Anthony J. D’Angelo

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Padlocks Locked and Unlocked.  Photo: TLClark, 8/15/19.

May what is locked be unlocked today
by a smile, a word,
your kindness, your love.

A Photo a Week Challenge: Yellow

It’s Thursday already!  I bought a new cup and saucer at the Iowa State Fair the other day and was thinking I should photograph it for Nancy Merrill’s challenge Still Life (sort of)  But it’s Thursday and she has a new challenge:  Yellow.

Since the cup holds plain old Lipton tea in the morning and there is an open package of lemon sandwich cookies on the counter, here’s one effort.

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Tea and Cookies.  Photo: TLClark, 8/15/19.

Another thought:  add honey!

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Tea with Honey plus Cookies.  Photo: TLClark, 8/15/19.

Looking at the pictures after-the-fact, I realize I should have experimented with some different light.  Always learning!

Having finished my attempt at Still Life Sort Of plus Yellow, I took the cup of tea to my desk.  It’s my favorite picture of the morning.

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Morning Tea.  Photo: TLClark, 8/15/19.

FOTD: Zinnias at the Iowa State Fair

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Zinnias, Discovery Garden, Iowa State Fair.  Photo: TLClark, 8/13/19.

One of our customs when attending the Iowa State Fair is to stop and enjoy the flowers in the Discovery Garden.  Click here for information about the garden.

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Zinnias, a Marigold and a Fly, Discovery Garden, Iowa State Fair.  Photo: TLClark, 8/13/19.

The zinnia with a fly isn’t a dahlia and a bumble bee as shared by Cee in her Flower of the Day photo challenge (click here) but her rules are simply to post a picture with a flower.  It’s a great challenge to follow for a little color, a little happiness no matter what your day holds.

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Zinnia, Discovery Garden, Iowa State Fair.  Photo: TLClark, 8/13/19.

The red zinnia caught my attention when at the garden but it wasn’t until looking at the pictures at home that I realized it was the rolled-up edges of the petals that made it look red and white.