Archive for September, 2017

Refreshing Weather


We have had some very hot temperatures as of late and no rain! My wildflowers have dried up and the grass has a gray-green look from lack of moisture. This morning, however, was a  refreshing reminder of what the fall season should feel like. Comfortable! With that in mind I headed early to the woods to see what I could see and, especially, find some Sheepshead Mushrooms.  Another common name is “Hen Of The Woods” since someone believed this mushroom resembles a hen on her nest.

Future meals

The few hours I was out found some disappointment when I could only find one sheepshead. I began wondering if the weather has played a role on their production this year. Maybe, with some rain they will grow profusely. I have found them even into November so I am still hopeful. I harvested the one ‘room I discovered and later cut it up and washed the bugs out of the hidden crevices.

Dogwood berries

  I saw a lot of squirrels this day, both in the woods and roads. I can say the same for deer and turkeys. I saw approximately 12 deer. Three were identified as buck, but none appeared legal for the hunting seasons. Only one presented any good photo ops.

Allegheny River

Turkeys were the same. I saw two flocks. One was in a field behind some houses as I was driving home. The other flock yielded about 18-22 birds. A humorous event occurred with two of the birds. The two young turkeys were on a dead limb. I managed two photos when the limb snapped. The birds fell a foot or so before remembering they had wings and soared off.

I have fished a couple of morning before the heat became intense. I fished a game land pond where I caught a Carp and Bullhead Catfish. the river yielded a Smallmouth Bass. A second fish pulled hard and I set the hook. I felt weight and then the line was broken or cut. the fish felt big!

This guy thinks he is a fisherman!

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   I was asked to join some friends for an afternoon on the Allegheny River. Ted Duncan is a recent acquaintance. We met with our mutual enjoyment to play  music. Ted is a bass guitarist. We hit it off immediately. He, also, owns a pontoon boat. Words had been expressed a couple of times to get together and do a boat ride.

Judge J. Frank Graff Bridge

The original plan was to go on Lake Arthur, but appointment issues with my wife, Laurie forced a decision to attend some boating on the beautiful Allegheny River at Kittanning, Pennsylvania. Mutual friends, Dick and Danna Vernon were, also, on the ride. We had a lot of laughs and great conversation. Don Gaiser and his lady-friend were present, as well.

The September 22 weather was very warm and bright this day. Of course, boating in such weather is a good thing!                                   

The trip went south on the river and way up the lower Crooked Creek watershed beginning at Rosston, Pennsylvania. Afterwards we all went farther south on the river to Lock Number 6 before turning back north.

Wildlife spotted included Canada Geese Soft-shelled Turtles, Great Blue Herons plus a couple of Red-Tailed Hawks.

Thank you Ted!

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Painting of A Wood Duck Drake

This recent acrylic painting features a male Wood Duck in all his splendor. I hadn’t entered the Pennsylvania Waterfowl Stamp Contest in a number of years for various reasons. However, this year I thought I would try another painting. My art wasn’t chosen. I hope you enjoy seeing the painting.

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The Jellyfish fascinated me at the zoo.  I took some photos. One is in black and white.  

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A Day At The Zoo!


The Pittsburgh & PPG Aquarium was a delight on our recent visit. Surprisingly, the crowd was low in numbers and that alone made our time special.

I hadn’t been to the zoo for a couple of years and learned of new exhibits which we enjoyed. Also, one elephant gave us quite a show as the beast entered the water area and began submerging itself and throwing water about.


  See: http://www.pittsburghzoo.org for more information on the zoo and aquarium.


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Saturday morning, September 16, expressed a desire to have my presence to walk under foggy skies. I ask you; How could I say no! I traveled to a state game lands to do the deed. Besides Ruger needed time afield, too.

At the time of arrival a deep fog engulfed much of the woodlands. the cool temperatures felt good on my aged, old, failing body. I enjoyed the elements as photo taking opportunities began showing themselves.                                                                                   *************************************************************************************************************************************************************************

  This morning, September 18th, proved to be another heavy fog. I traveled to Crooked Creek Park to search out Eagles and Ospreys. I saw various deer while in route to the park. I  didn’t dare stop for any of these because of the fog.

  I parked at the top of the hill and walked several trails and eventually worked down to the beach area. I did see one Bald Eagle and had several Osprey sightings.I saw Ospreys diving after fish, but I wasn’t close enough for any photos.  I managed two quick photos of another Osprey flying through, but they weren’t of the quality I desired.      

I saw additional deer while walking. A big flock of Canada Geese swept from the sky to land of the lake. Lots of squirrel and chipmunk activity was witnessed as the busy little rodents searched out nuts and acorns. I saw several groundhogs out and about as well.  I saw a lot od Mourning Doves and Killdeers. It was a good day for wildlife.

Killdeer tracks


Canada Geese

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Creation Museum

Peter and John at the empty tomb!

Laurie and I had planned on coming to this museum last year but surgery prevented the effort. However, we made the trip this year. 

The museum was one of many exhibits, videos, entertainment. We were anxious to see all the building had to offer, however, we didn’t expect the people. The museum was very crowded and not to our liking or enjoyment. Maybe, the rain had some part of this crowd, maybe not! Due to the people we didn’t spend as much time as we had hoped to do. We are funny like that!


Paul, the Apostle to the Gentiles

Exhibits included many Biblical scenes and the people involved  during those times. Other exhibits displayed Lucy the famous ape-like creature used by evolutionists as the missing link. We saw the handful of bone fragments used for artists to make the illustrations so often used to make a proof of evolution. Unbelievable what a farce that was used as positive proof of man being an ape!

The garden

We watched a couple of videos, too.     


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Botanical Garden

Laurie and I with an umbrella began a walk along trails to check out the botanical garden. This garden is next to the Creation Museum in Kentucky. The rains were minimal at this time, so there was plenty of time of not  needing an umbrella. A large pond full of big bluegills bordered much of the garden. We entered a nice-sized gazebo building built over the pond’s edge. here I could see a couple of hundred bluegills. These fish were hungry and spoiled. Of course, I gave them some food.        

 The trails meandered about the garden in various directions. A number of bridges crossed over ravines flowing with faster moving waters often with small waterfalls. These waters flowed downhill to feed the big pond. Some of these bridges were called bridges.

Flowers abounded throughout the garden. Some had a tropical feel about them while others were native. The pond  had water lilies and blue Pickerel Flowers. We spent over an hour enjoying these sights.

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The Ark Encounter

Laurie and I were very much impressed when we finally made the trip to witness for ourselves the ARK! The Ark was built in 2014 through 2016 with the opening for the public in July of 2016. I had chartered a bus to make the trip, but was forced to cancel it due to Laurie’s back surgery in July of last year.


This Ark is huge! The big ship was created using the dimensions listed in the Bible in Genesis 6 of the Bible. This makes the Ark 510 feet in length;   eighty-five feet  wide and fifty-one feet high totaling three stories. The outside  is awe striking to see because of the size, however the interior is just as awe striking due to the all the allowable space available to place so much! This structure is currently the largest wooden structure in the world today. Like I said the Ark is huge! (See http://www.ArkEncounter.com to see more details and interests.)                                                                              

Many exhibits are found within the interior of the Ark. One can, also, watch movies at various locations. Much of the interior has cages; food supplies; water cisterns to show possible methods of building the original Ark and making it all work. The demonstrations show possible cage construction methods to aid in eliminating any wildlife waste materials and storage of food and water, etc.

Looking from bottom through three stories to the top of the Ark.

Life-like mannequins are located within to show how the Noah and the eight people may have dressed and lived. One such demonstrations depicts Noah

Man-made Chimpanzee. Each hair is stitched onto a form. this is not a taxidermy mount.

in a robotic form, moving his head and arms and speaking and answering questions of the public. the eyes move and gaze into the viewers.                                                                   

The Ark concept began in 2004; construction began in 2014 and completed by July 2016. Not bad at all. the Bible says Noah worked for 120 years to build the Ark. Such Faith!

Lighting with Olive oil.

The Ark is located near Williamstown, Kentucky!

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Riverboat on the Ohio!


Doug and Kathy Flanders; Jerry and Phyllis Shull and Laurie at the eating table.

Laurie and I enjoyed a pleasant boating experience while on a mini-vacation. We rode a riverboat on the Ohio River. Music was supplied and a buffet meal filled out bellies!   

We boarded this boat in the evening and headed northeast on the great Ohio River. I am not sure how far we traveled, but we went quite a ways enjoying an easy ride, seeing the scenery and geese and ducks. At some point the boat turned around and headed southwest just as the evening began to turn towards darkness.


The trip back went past the site of boarding the boat closer to Cincinnati, Ohio. We boarded on the Kentucky side of the river near Covington, Kentucky. Actually, we learned the river is actually part of the state of Kentucky until one reached the shore on the Ohio side. Interesting! Now we could see the many bridges as they crossed the river. Some had very old architecture dating into the eighteen hundreds.                                                                            

Eventually we turned again to move northeasterly again. Darkness was now very noticeable as the city lights began illuminating the buildings and strongly contrasting the darkened sky.


Old era building

A statement of interest. The Allegheny River of western Pennsylvania was actually know as the Ohio River.  The name would change to the Allegheny River at Pittsburgh where it intersected with the Monongahela River. At this intersection the Ohio River now begins.

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