Archive for August, 2011


    I have had a week with many aspects of it better off forgotten. However, I have some positives as well

My last entry, I wrote of, my upcoming trip to Old Bedford Village. The prints, of “The Wheatfield-Whirlpool of Death” were later being completed than we had expected. I rushed to sign and prepare packaging. These prints and the original were scheduled to be with Civil War historians and reenactors at the village. Plans were soon  changed!

I was approximately 15-17 miles away from Bedford when I stopped to enter the woodland area for a “nature call.” Upon returning to the car nothing happened. After some thoughts and time the car started , but, with flashing lights and a loss of power. I exited Exit 10 towards a small community . I stopped and the car wouldn’t start. I flagged down a state trooper and was given contacts. To be brief, the auto man couldn’t find out what was wrong. After discussions of options I elected to have the car hauled to the dealership near my home of Kittanning, PA.  The main computer modem had failed. Insurance only covered a third of these costs.                                




  Today, after a tooth was repaired, I walked about my park-like yard examining the wildlife; flowers and insects. Late August and early September see the final flowering of many specie. My yard is no exception. One flower of interest is called the “Turtlehead”. The flower actually appears to be an unopened bud.

The “jack-in-the-pulpit” of spring is now yielding its bright scarlet berries. They are quite attractive.   

"Pulpit" seeds

“Boneset” is a white cluster flower that my dad told me was used as a tea for a number of ailments in our histories past. I have never tried making a tea. As I age I might need some of that tonic!


   The “jewelweed” is in bloom now. I have the common orange and brown specie with a few yellow and white varieties along my stream. The hummingbirds enjoy these flowers. As a child, I would touch the ripened seed-producing pods to watch them explode their contents for next year’s plants. It didn’t take much to entertain a country boy! Some use the plant to soothe poison-ivy.

I planted a winterberry shrub some time ago. I like the deep red berries that hang on well-into the snow season. This allows for a nice contrast against the dreary grays or whites of late fall and winter.

Monarch caterpillar

  I planted milkweed plants years ago too for the monarch butterflies to eat. This year is no exception for I have the colored-striped caterpillars eating the leaves. They will eventually be those bright orange and black butterflies.

Let us hope a better week is in store!    


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Larry Smail and Robert Bowser with Original painting

  All things are finally falling into place in regards to the original acrylic painting entitled, “THE WHEATFIELD- WHIRLPOOL OF DEATH” The organizing of the plans are taking shape also. I will be attending an event at Old Bedford Village on Saturday of this upcoming weekend.  The event is known as “Meet The Generals.”

I will have the original 40″X24″  painting on hand, as well as, some of the limited edition and special anniversary prints on hand  to sell. The print size is 19″x28.6″ with an image of 16″x26.7″.

The prints depict  the 62nd Pennsylvania Volunteer Infantry, as part of Colonel Jacob B. Sweitzer’s Second Brigade, First Division, Fifth Corps on the evening of July 2, 1863. The timing of the conflict was during the Wheatfield battle of the great Gettysburg campaign. Many of these brave soldiers came from my home county of Armstrong County, Pennsylvania.


There are 450 of the regular limited-edition prints signed and numbered. The cost each is $100.00.

A total of 45 Artist-Proof prints will be signed and numbered. The cost of this print is $120.00.

Maltese Cross of the 62nd PVI

   A special anniversary print has been printed, also. These prints will be limited to 150 in remembrance of the 150th year anniversary of the Civil war as well as the “Wheatfield” battle of July 2, 1863. To the right of each numbered print will be the words, “150th Wheatfield Edition. Also, a simple red Maltese Cross will be hand drawn and colored. The 62nd Pennsylvania Volunteer Infantry often wore the cross on the “Kepie” hats and uniforms. The price of this print is $150.00.

If interested in obtaining any of these prints, please contact me and I will supply all details as to payment and to whom, etc. My e-mail is: lasmail@windstream.net.

Proceeds go to the: 62nd PVI Living History regiment; (www.62ndcodpa.org)  www.camp#43suvcw.org         www.restonarms.wordpress.com

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The following words are something you usually won’t see within my writings.  With the constant threat to the Jewish people and Israel I felt a need  to write  my thoughts on the nation and people. Of course, the “blog” will be only a very brief history of Israel.

The Assyrian man, Abraham was called by God. Abraham believed what was spoken  to him allowing the man to be deemed righteous. People don’t usually understand that Abraham was a pagan at the time of his calling. Because of his belief the Abrahamic Covenant was established between he and God. The covenant included a promise that Abraham would have many descendents to cover the earth. A nation would be established and the lands promised  would include the great river in Egypt and the Euphrates River. (Genesis 15:17-20)

Isaac was born from Abraham and Sarah and Jacob was the son of promise with Isaac the father. Jacob’s name was changed to Israel. Jacob’s (Israel) 12 sons would eventually become a nation of people living in the land of Egypt. (This is the Twelve Tribes of Israel.) These people would become like slaves to Egypt as time passed.  Through Moses the people were released from bondage and with time entered into the lands we now know as Israel. (The Promised Land.)

The long lineage continued for generations but not without issues. The nation’s failures to be obedient lead them back and forth through captivities of various pagan, Gentile empires. At the time of Christ’s birth, Israel was in Roman control. In the year 70 A.D., the Roman wrath came upon the nation and the temple was destroyed and the people were greatly dispersed.

Many years went by when talks of a Nation of Israel began to become heard. World War 2 saw the Jewish people  murdered by the millions by the Nazi-controlled Germany and others. This is the “Holocaust”. Talks began anew and in 1948, the Nation of Israel was once more. Immediately, war broke out and in 1967 Jerusalem was again under Jewish control.

Israel, today, is one of the United States’s closet allies, at least for now. The land is surrounded by countries and organizations that have one goal in mind…the elimination of the Jews.  Iran comes to mind with the outspoken leader saying he wants to drive them into the sea.

As someone who has studied Bible prophecy for many years I can’t help to wonder how much longer  Israel, as before will see the terrible times, once again engulf the nation and the Jewish people. Few nations support the countries right to defend. I shake my head and disbelief at many of the anti-Israel events and words from the leaders of various countries and the United Nation.

Anti-Semitic thoughts will continue to grow. I know Israel will be facing some terrible times ahead. A remnant will survive the wars that are to come. The future will find Israel at peace with the Kingdom, once again, and the borders extended to the locations listed above.

That is why I stand with Israel. Commonsense dictates this to me as well as Biblical knowledge.

I realize this is a very brief account of Israel’s history. I hope these writings have spurred some interest and an urge to learn more.

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Andrew Blaney and Jim Johnson

Indeed, I have been involved in many things over this last week. Beginning  on August 4th through August 7th, I was at the Armstrong County Folk Festival most days. I was dressed in  civilian manner along with members of the 62nd Pennsylvania Volunteers, Company D. Thismembers of this  group are Civil War Living Historians. I had the completed and framed painting of “The Wheatfield-Whirlpool Of Death”on hand to exhibit and discuss. 

Kaison Wolfe with my painting

The only day I was not involved at the festival was Saturday the 6th when I spent eight hours near New Alexandria, PA making some country music this time.

Monday, August 8, my friend, Robert “Slim” Bowser and I went to Pittsburgh to discuss having prints made of the above mentioned painting.  Later in the evening, Laurie and I attended a MS meeting with a catered meal.

SGL Bluebird Box

  Tuesday, I was beat. I wasn’t very productive for much of the day. I did some yard work and I did work on another painting. I am considering entering this waterfowl painting in the Pennsylvania waterfowl contest this September. I haven’t entered in quite some time.

Cooper's Hawk

   Wednesday morning, I stepped outside in the coolness and decided carp fishing should take a priority. I loaded up, after administrating Suzie’s insulin shot, and headed for the mile long hike to the local state game lands pond. The walk in introduced me to a small flock of turkeys.

The fishing didn’t disappoint me either. I caught four carp ranging from 14 inches to about 20 inches. The “close to shore” activity was low this morning, possibly from the rain and slightly higher water in the pond…more food???

      The walk out from the pond was enjoyable. I chose a different route to exit and heard a fawn bleating and shortly saw a fawn and its mother. They were about 25 yards away. I managed one quick photo.

I spent the remainder of the day working around the yard, mowing and painting. Later, near dark, I watched flying squirrels at the feeder.

Flying Squirrel

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First Place At Car Show


Bob and mom with the trophy

  My step-father, Bob Miller received the first place honor at a car show at Elderton Pennsylvania. The event was held on July 30th, 2011. I had forgotten about the show until Bob and my mother (Ruth) pulled into the drive way later that same evening. I watched Bob glowingly remove his first place honor from the car.

Bob has a 1954 Chevy Bel-Aire with only some 26.000 original miles on it. And it is a beauty!Bob has placed in three shows since his first show last year. He has placed second and third in previous shows.  (He has only entered three shows too.) This is his first “First Place” trophy.

Congratulations Bob!

For photos of this car, please click on “My Family” at the right column and go to the June19, 2010 blog.

My cousin, Donnie Smail received second place in his class with a 1972 Mach 1 Mustang. I think I will enter myself as an old antique something or rather next time. Ya just never know!

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