Cee’s Odd Ball Photo Challenge: June 18, 2017

There is never a theme to this challenge, so what is an odd ball is all up for you to discover and photograph.

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This one cracks me up every time I drive past. Someone waited until the tree was pretty big before cutting around it.

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No snow in June? Just find some big ol’ rocks!

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During the 2015 Belize mission trip we saw this nativity scene atop the entrance to a house in San Pedro.

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In honor of the day just passed.

Cee’s Odd Ball Photo Challenge 06/18/17

 

 

 

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Cee’s Which Way Photo Challenge – 06/16/17

 

Do we really pay attention to which way everything goes? I think we are so automatic in our routines we have no idea what we see. That is why I enjoy the Which Way challenge.

This challenge sets out a broad set of criteria:

  • Roads:  gravel, asphalt, cobbled, dirt, freeway, expressway, highway, bridges
  • Indoor walkways:  hallways, aisles, people movers
  • Outdoor walks:  sidewalks, paths, trails
  • Stairs, elevators, escalators, or steps:  indoors, outdoors
  • Railway  tracks, monorails, ski lifts
  • Runways and starmacs
  • Ferry’s, canals and lochs
  • Parking lots, private driveways
  • Tunnels
  • Signs of any kind:  directional, informational, store signs, wind vanes
  • Maps that are posted as signs

 

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This is a wood bridge in between towers at the Zip Line portion of the Ark Adventure in Williamstown, Kentucky.

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I think it is fascinating to see where roads have been cut through big walls of rock.

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This is the narrow spiral walkway to ascend the zip line tower.

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A nearby natural attraction requires a wooden walkway to access.

Cee's WW

 

 

 

Cee’s Which Way Photo Challenge – 5/12/17

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Friend – Weekly Photo Challenge – 5/31/17

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This was the best picture of my dog I could find for this weekly photo challenge. My sheltie will be two in August and is quite a good companion.

For the 5/31/17 Weekly Photo Challenge

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Share Your World – 5/29/17

 

Each week Cee Neuner asks us questions to peel back the onion we call our life. It is a way to socialize through your blog and I find it quite fun. If you haven’t joined the circuit you should, so we can get to know each other better.

What is the most famous landmark or building you have ever seen?

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Three years ago we made a journey to Ohio to see the Columbus Zoo, the Ohio Amish Country, a Cleveland Indians baseball game and the Cedar Park Roller Coaster Park. But during our trip we realized we were a manageable drive from Niagara Falls, so we made the trip. What an experience. If you are within reach it is well worth your time.

Do you like long vacation or lots of mini-vacations?

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We just returned from a two-day trip to see a new attraction in Northern Kentucky, called the Ark adventure. it is a life-size replica of Noah’s Ark. It was a much longer trip than we usually take over two days, but the Cincinnati Reds were not in town which I hoped would be the other major event on the trip.

What is your favorite National or State Park?

I have only been to the National Parks on the right side of America, so I feel hamstrung into a short list of choices. I plan to visit many of the parks in the Western United States in the coming years and feel like Yellowstone may soon make my list of favorites based on some of the photographs I have enjoyed. Right now I suppose I would list the Blue Ridge Parkway as a favorite.

What is your fantasy vacation?

Fantasy seems like a far out term and I cannot really fathom that kind of trip. Soon we will board a cruise ship for an Alaskan trip with a plan to make it to Hawaii in another five years or so. Perhaps the European or Australian trip would fit in the fantasy category.

Optional Bonus question:  What are you grateful for from last week, and what are you looking forward to in the week coming up? 

I am grateful for the weekend trip we were blessed to enjoy. I got to do some zip line along with my daughter and a local water fall system known as Blue Hole Falls.

I look forward to some sunshine after a lot of rain last week. Also there is a model train show about an hour from my home I want to attend before heading off to a family birthday gathering for our niece on Saturday.

Share Your World 5/29/17

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Share Your World – 05/22/17

Weekly Cee Neuner tosses some questions out for anyone to answer about what makes them tick. Many of my readers may not find some of this too interesting, but it is a social kind of thing which I am told is a necessary process of learning about yourself.

What one thing have you not done that you really want to do? 

I want to travel. There is plenty of places in the United States I would love to see.  There is also innumerable places around the world I dream of enjoying.

How often do you get a haircut?

My wife has a home hair salon, so my haircuts come when she sees the need and has the time. I hate asking her to fit me in because I feel like she is always so fatigued from the schedule she keeps.

In regards to puzzle what’s your choice: jigsaw, crossword, word search or numeric puzzles?

I never have been a lover of crosswords. I know there are so many people who keep that as a regular piece of their daily routine, but I am not in that number. If I tackle any type of puzzle it will be a jigsaw.

How many cities have you lived? You can share the number of physical residences and/or the number of cities. I have had seven different addresses so far in my life. Three have been in my hometown where I settled. It is a small town about 10,000 residents. For a brief time I lived in a 60,000 population city during college and an even larger 100,000 metro area while on a cooperative education tour in North Carolina.

Optional Bonus question:  What are you grateful for from last week, and what are you looking forward to in the week coming up? 

I am grateful I got to join many other volunteers in the efforts to minister to the large gathering of hikers who collected in the nearby town of Damascus Virginia for the annual three day festival known as Appalachian Trail Days. The Appalachian trail is a 2,195 mile hiking trail stretching from Maine to Georgia. My part in this ministry was assisting with a shower and washing machine trailer that provided hot showers and laundry service.

I look forward to a short trip with my family in the coming long weekend. We plan to visit the Ark Encounter, a huge replica of Noah’s ark in Kentucky. My daughter and I will also enjoy some zip line adventures. Early Saturday I plan to visit a local festival where I can find more books to help fulfill a long term mission opportunity for out church.

 

syw

Share Your World – May 22,2017

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Weekly Photo Challenge – Heritage – 05/17/17

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This s a large stain glass window in the church where I began my spiritual journey as a child. I attended this small Methodist Church for twenty-five years, learning so much about God, Jesus and salvation. In 1997, after my brother died from a battle with cancer at age 29 the church used his memorial donations combined with others to install this stain glass window as a tribute.

Weekly Photo Challenge – Heritage

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Share Your World – 05/15/17

Weekly Cee Neuner tosses some questions out for anyone to answer about what makes them tick. Many of my readers may not find some of this too interesting, but it is a social kind of thing which I am told is a necessary process of learning about yourself.

How many languages do you you speak?

Sadly I can say over my life I only have developed the ability to speak one language. When I was in 8th grade our school had something called Exploratory which allowed us to dabble in classes we might want to take in later years of high school. I had six weeks of French then and found it interesting, but not nearly long enough to make an impact.

What are you reading, watching, listening to, eating?

At the moment I am only writing. The house is pretty silent. Out the windows behind me there are plenty of bird sounds to fill the air. I don’t read this time of year as I usually am outside until well after dark and then it is off to bed. My wife and I enjoy a couple of television shows that will wrap up their seasons this week so I imagine we will try to carve out the time to see those.


What was the last photo you took with your phone?

We put out our window boxes with geraniums and wave petunias about a week ago. The “blue” waves as they are called in the business are blooming and have such a deep rich color right now.

What is your favorite time of day?

During this time of year it is when my work shift is complete and I can break outside. The warm weather and sunshine draw me out for short walks with the dog during the day, but being able to be outside and enjoy our warm seasons is my favorite past time.

Optional Bonus question:  What are you grateful for from last week, and what are you looking forward to in the week coming up? 

On Sunday we had a lunch with our son and daughter on our newly finished deck where we enjoyed a Mother’s Day lunch. Since our son has just completed his degree and is looking to start a new job we don’t know if this will be something we will get to depend on going forward. Later in the day we visited my wife’s mother for a short period.

This week I am already enjoying the great weather and temperatures in the mid-80s. Toward the end of the week I am looking forward to a mission opportunity with our church at something called Trail Days in Damascus, Virginia, where the Appalachian Trail intersects with a local trail called the Virginia Creeper Trail. 8-10,000 hikers and associated folks will converge on the small town to celebrate a week long hiking culture.

syw

Share Your World – May 15, 2017

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Cee’s Odd Ball Photo Challenge: May 14, 2017

Do you ever roll back through your photos to see something you missed the first time? Or find something that when you look again you find a different form or flavor of humor? Then Cee Neuner’s Oddball Photo Challenge is just right for you to show off your wares.

 

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When my daughter and I went on a mission trip in 2015 we put together a puppet show using the puppets above. None of the children we entertained in Belize has ever seen or experienced snow. I took the puppets we used and strapped the to this sled and made a short video of them riding in the snow. I sent it to the kids so they could see what Sheriff Pedro and Miss Bacon were up to.

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We are used to the behemoth cement trucks in the United States that rumble about hauling loads to job sites. But also during the same mission trip we encountered this cement truck in use by a road construction crew.

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I have always lived in the U.S.A., so always have been used to eggs being sold in cartons and refrigerated. But in Belize on our mission trip we experienced what you see below. From what I understood from someone who lived as a missionary there for three years as long as they haven’t been refrigerated they don’t have to be.

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I managed to draw all the photos for this OBC out of the same trip. On our “free” day during the 2015 mission trip we journeyed over to a Maya ruins called Xunantonich. To get there we had to board this ferry. The ferry is powered by a manual crank.

 

 

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Cee’s Oddball Photo Challenge 05/14/17

 

 

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Cee’s Which Way Photo Challenge – 05/12/17

 

Do we really pay attention to which way everything goes? I think we are so automatic in our routines we have no idea what we see. That is why I enjoy the Which Way challenge.

This challenge sets out a broad set of criteria:

  • Roads:  gravel, asphalt, cobbled, dirt, freeway, expressway, highway, bridges
  • Indoor walkways:  hallways, aisles, people movers
  • Outdoor walks:  sidewalks, paths, trails
  • Stairs, elevators, escalators, or steps:  indoors, outdoors
  • Railway  tracks, monorails, ski lifts
  • Runways and starmacs
  • Ferry’s, canals and lochs
  • Parking lots, private driveways
  • Tunnels
  • Signs of any kind:  directional, informational, store signs, wind vanes
  • Maps that are posted as signs

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This is a photo of the trail head of the Virginia Creeper Trail. It is the remnants of an old railroad line that has been developed into a major economic engine for Abingdon and the nearby town of Damascus which will welcome 10 times its normal number of inhabitants in two weeks for something called Trail Days.

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The next two photos are of the old Virginia Creeper steam locomotive.

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This collection of documents gives some history of the old Virginia Creeper Locomotive.

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Cee’s Which Way Photo Challenge – 5/12/17

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Three Things Thursday

My second turn with Three Things Thursday where it is your goal to share three happy things you experienced in the seven days past. There is a new host for this weekly collection of happy, Natalie @ There She Goes just picked up the hosting duties from Nerd in the Brain. I met Natalie during the recent 2017 A to Z Challenge and I know she will do a fabulous job with this!

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Many of my posts over the last week have talked about the biggest event in our family’s life this spring, the graduation of our oldest from college. Most of the spring revolved around preparing for the celebration we enjoyed where we celebrated not only his graduation but 22nd birthday with our family as well as the family of his girlfriend who also graduated.

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Over the quarter century we have been married my wife and I have always enjoyed gardening. In particular we love growing green beans and tomatoes. Due to some rodent issues we have progressed to raised beds which we expect will not only help mitigate our issues but be easier on our backs. With favorable weather and extra free time we now can focus on moving forward with the planting.

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Another blogger I met during the 2017 A to Z was Niki from The Richness of a Simple Life. She introduced me to something called the Kindness Challenge, a seven week opportunity to practice your ability to focus on being kind. The focus this week is being kind to yourself and learning how to make yourself stronger.

Why would you not want to take a moment to be thankful for the blessings God has sprinkled into your life?

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Reflecting – Weekly Photo Challenge – 05/10/17

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Well I suppose you could say I sidestepped the sprit of this week’s photo challenge, but try as I may I could not ferret out a reflection photo. So, since I am still savoring the moment I watched my son grab his tangible representation of a college degree at my alma mater four days ago I am reflecting in a different way seeing a photo of him at about two years of age.

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Weekly Photo Challenge – Reflecting

 

 

 

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Cee’s Odd Ball Photo Challenge: May 7, 2017

Do you ever roll back through your photos to see something you missed the first time? Or find something that when you look again you find a different form or flavor of humor? Then Cee Neuner’s Oddball Photo Challenge is just right for you to show off your wares.

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Now don’t go and call Child & Protective Services, I am not feeding children to the Abominable Snowman, we were just using this prop to advertise our Vacation Bible School at a local one day festival last spring.

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I found this mask along with several others in a museum while we were in Chicago with our daughter and her high school band for the 2015 Saint Patrick’s Day parade.

 

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Two bananas which grew together.

I photographed this banana on one of my mission trips to Belize.

 

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This is at my local landfill for collecting used motor oil that is purposed for recycling.

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Share Your World – May 8, 2017

Want to learn more about me? This Share Your World stuff is like peeling the onion. I promise I will try not to cause you to cry.

When you’re alone at home, do you wear shoes, socks, slippers, or go barefoot?

The majority of the time I wear shoes. I have a dog that goes outside often with me when I walk, so shoes are necessary. I do love to walk on the cool grass during summer however, so I am not always with my feet completely covered.

What was your favorite food when you were a child?

I ate enough peanut butter and jelly to ensure the manufacturing plants of Peter Pan peanut butter and Smucker’s jelly could forecast their future for decades. I will still eat it occasionally, but usually I am going for something else with longer staying power in my stomach.

Are you a listener or talker?

If you ask my wife she will say I am definitely a listener. I can talk, and do, but there are many times I would rather just listen to what is being said. I like to make sure I totally understand what is being said rather than speak out of turn and get it wrong.  Some good advice I heard is that we have tow ears and one mouth for a reason. Also, one of the Seven Habits of Highly Successful People says ‘Seek First to Understand, and Then to be Understood’. I am not perfect at this instruction, but try to make it a good, reliable habit.

Favorite thing to (pick one):  Photograph?  Write? Or Cook?

I like to photograph nature. Well, I like to photograph anything, but nature gives a free and unique show every day and sometimes many times each day. Sharing the photographs in challenges on WordPress gives me the opportunity to connect with others who also love to take pictures.

What is the easiest way for your to learn something new?  By reading, by seeing and doing, in a classroom?

I just completed a re-work of our back deck and I have to say I learned so much by just doing. There is innumerable how-to videos, books and magazine articles, but they all cover the best situations when everything works out just right. No matter how well I plan there is always situations where I have to be creative to overcome the obstacle.

Optional Bonus question:  What are you grateful for from last week, and what are you looking forward to in the week coming up? 

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I was grateful to watch my son graduate from college. It was a very moving experience for me. I suppose I was more invested than some because I felt like my son needed the extra help in some ways. But embracing him moments after the ceremony ended I found myself overcome with the emotion of it all.

This week I am looking forward to resting some. We have pushed hard for the last few weeks trying to get everything ready for the graduation/birthday party we had this past Sunday. Yesterday we moved my son and his girlfriend home from school. Now I can turn to my gardening that has been on hold and enjoy some time in the great outdoors that isn’t tied to the celebration.

syw

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Inter – Stream of Consciousness Saturday

IMG_6984Today is a banner day for our family. The first college graduation of a child occurs today. Yes, today we will become intergenerational alumni of the same school, East Tennessee State University in Johnson City, Tennessee. I think most parents want their children to achieve just as much or more in their life than the parents have. My wife has built a career in the service industry, which is quite challenging, but I am a college graduate and really want both of our children to have that advantage in their lives.

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The Friday Reminder and Prompt for #SoCS May 6/17

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Questions I Think My Dog Would Ask – Chapter 3

QITMDWA

Welcome back for the second installment in this recurring series and if you are new we are glad to have you. For background to the newbies, this is a chance for my year and a half year old miniature Sheltie to speak her canine mind. If you were around Syudney for any amount of time you would realize her personality is so large that there has to be some questions she would like answered. I seek to be the best owner I can and attend to every need, so that is the reason we decided to bring her questions to this forum.

So this week’s QITMDWA is this, in Sydney’s words:

If I can go in Lowes, why can’t I go in Wal-Mart? I love to go anywhere with dad. Usually we go early in the morning and I know it is because he doesn’t want me to be alone at the house where I might wake up mom, Isaac or Meredith when they are home.

My favorite place to go is Lowes, because dad takes me in and everybody wants to pet me. They all tell me how pretty I am too. But there is this other place that dad goes and I have to stay in the car. What I want to know is if Wal-Mart hates dogs? Don’t they have what they need to clean up after me if I have an accident? I have finally learned how to let dad know when I need a walk, so why does Wal-Mart say no?

I knew this was a question on your mind because the look on your face when I get out makes me know you just don’t understand.

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