Scale – Weekly Photo Challenge – 10/11/17

This week the topic is Scale.


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You know on most days a tanker truck is a large item, but parked next to a 113,000 ton cruise ship it resembles a toy.


The same concept applies to a train that is relegated to a narrow stretch of track as it navigates a 3000 foot plus mountain range.


Reversing the effect of the first photograph here is our cruise ship from a distance as taken while riding the White Pass & Yukon Route railroad. Our ship is on the right.

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Yes, I know I am overusing the cruise ship dynamic, but I actually took this one with the intent of getting a good shot of Mount Rainier in the distance. Can you see the little motor boat between the tanker at the bottom and the cruise ship father out?




Weekly Photo Challenge – Scale








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Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge: Topic for this week is Happy – 10/10/17

This week the topic is Happy .



Enjoying an adults only trip as we celebrate our twenty-fifth wedding anniversary.


The happy smile on my wife from the surprise bouquet of orange roses.






Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge 10/10/17

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Twenty-Five Years of I Do

The Beginning

It is interesting how our minds work. More than twenty-five years ago I met the person I wanted in my life more than any on this earth. But for what seemed like an eternity before that day, March 23rd of 1991 I longed for a person to share my life with. It was an awful need, you know. Being in my mid-20s and not having a forever mate was a terrible burden. Okay, I am being melodramatic on purpose, but when you feel like your life is behind schedule to get pretty anxious.

Minnie Thankfully I had someone who thought so much of me she devoted unknown hours of prayer to the need I held so dear. Minnie Bryan, the lady to the left of me in our wedding photo, was the person who not only was my first baby-sitter, or “day care mother” as she put it, she was someone who cared so deeply she wanted to make sure I had a good caretaker for my whole life. Minnie and I had such a special relationship she knew me to my core. She also instilled the strong Christian values I hold so dear even now, some two decades past her last day on earth.

Minnie basically arranged the blind date that hatched what we celebrate today, our twenty-fifth wedding anniversary. There is a mix of response when folks learn of this momentous milestone. Many are impressed that my wife and I are crossing this mark. But truthfully, in our family twenty-five years is merely a good start. With aunts and uncles marking 40, 50 and even 60 years this achievement, while noteworthy is just a continuation of a family habit.

The Family

I know some people go into a marriage immediately thinking of a family. I was just loving the part of having someone in my life. But with time the thought of little ones running around seemed right. By our sixth anniversary we had our son and daughter, Isaac and Meredith to fill out our family.


At this point our family has grown by one more member as our son has introduced Katie to our circle. I think before too long we will be celebrating another wedding as they embark on their own magical journey.


Sharing a Life

2011-libbyNo life is completely without its challenges. When you recite the vows of marriage you hears words such as “For Better or Worse” and “In Sickness and Health”. We have weathered our fair share and some might say more. I have lost three members of the core family I loved for decades. We experienced a season where one of our children had a debilitating medical condition.

There has been times when jobs have been lost, or job situations became so stressful there was significant strain in our day to day lives. But through it all our shared faith allowed us to handle our life with grace and patience. We consider God to be the most important part of our marriage. Without Him our journey would have been untenable and likely would not have continued to this day.


Looking Forward to the Next Twenty-five


Being able to share your life with another is such a unique blessing, and I want to take the chance right here to say I am abundantly blessed. I know my wife was certainly a gift from God and I thank Him every day for her. As we transition to the portion of life where we spend more time together and begin to see the world, I look forward to many opportunities to enjoy our time together.









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Seven Day Challenge, Day 1

I received this challenge from my friend Cee at Cee’s Photography.

Rules are

  • Seven days.
  • Seven black and white photos of your life.
  • No people.
  • No explanation.
  • Challenge someone new each day.

Today I challenge Rebel Girl.


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Cee’s Black & White Photo Challenge: All Things Farm Related – 10/05/17


This week’s topic is All Things Farm Related.

farm1A local antique tractor club had their favorites arranged for their annual show in July.


While I undoubtedly have some farm related photos in the repository these from the train lay out in Strasburg, Pennsylvania were the easiest to locate.


This was part of a mobile train layout I saw at a train show in November in West Virginia. It is a replica citrus farm and has some kind of crop being harvested.


This last one is a bit blurry because it is a snapshot captured of running video. This is an Amish barn raising from the Choo Choo Barn layout in Strasburg, PA, which is a stone’s throw from Lancaster, where there is a large concentration of Amish farms.

Cee’s Black & White Photo Challenge – 10/05/17



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Pedestrian – Weekly Photo Challenge – 10/4/17


This week the topic is Pedestrian.


At the local NASCAR track there is acres and acres of parking, but eventually everyone has to put in the pedestrian work.

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When you dump about 3,000 people off a cruise ship you need complex machinery to get them to the ground.


What happens when a small town welcomes three large cruise ships? Pedestrians by the thousands!

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In order to tie up the behemoths the dock hands use the narrow pedestrian bridge to get to their tying points.

Weekly Photo Challenge – Pedestrian








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Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge: Letter G – Needs to have the letter G – 10/03/17

This week the topic needs to have the letter G .


A bald eagle in Ketchikan Alaska.


A hanging glacier in the Tracy Arm Fjord, Alaska.


Some small icebergs in the Tracy Arm Fjord.


The Mendenhall Glacier near Juneau, Alaska



Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge 10/03/17

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Cee’s Black & White Photo Challenge: Lines & Angles – 09/28/17


How do you like these lines and angles? This is the skeleton of my sagging deck which became the first major project of 2017. I removed it all and rebuilt basically from scratch.


Here is the lines and angles drawing complete with measurements of board lengths while planning the rebuild.


I did not do very well in Geometry in high school and this intricate ceiling would not be as pretty with my skills behind it.


Even more impressive to me was the lines and angles employed to create this beautiful feature, which allowed sufficient light to a bountiful inside haven for orchids and Iris.

Cee’s Black & White Photo Challenge – 09/28/17



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Windows – Weekly Photo Challenge – 09/20/17


One of the ornate windows from the Biltmore House in Asheville, NC.



The Vanderbilt family’s ostentatious taste seems extravagant today, but must have been mind-blowing in the early days of the 1900s.







Weekly Photo Challenge – Windows








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Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge: Topic is Fun or Flowers – 09/26/17

This week the topic is Fun or Flowers.



In mid-August we visited the farm of some acquaintances that have taken what is usually a burdensome task, keeping the weeds down and made a beautiful flower display in its place.


One of the Dahlia cuttings from this season.


This is a hiking trip to a locale named the Devil’s Bathtub, in Scott County, Virginia near Fort Blackmore.


After celebrating several anniversaries at either Friday night football game or Saturday band competitions we took our first trip to Natural Bridge for our 24th.





Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge 09/26/17

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Layered – Weekly Photo Challenge – 09/20/17




It is the time of year in Virginia where the layers of color abound in the maple trees.



The ocean, mountains and glacier fragments in the Tracy Arm Fjord in Alaska taken September 6th, 2017.



The Mendenhall Glacier from Juneau Alaska taken on September 6th of 2017.


Hanging glaciers near Juneau, Alaska captured ruing our Whale Watching Excursion on September 6ht, 2017.

Weekly Photo Challenge – Layered








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Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge: Letter E – Needs to have two E’s in the topic word – 09/19/17

This week the topic must have two E’s in the topic word.


This is art work from the Baptist training Camp in Belize we use for lodging during our December mission trips. Heaven is the Double ‘E’ word that caught my eye.


Meredith, my daughter on the far left after enjoying an hour on the paddle board, resting with some friends before returning to shore.


Eyes on the camera instead of the puppet show at Heart House, which is in Maya Mopan, a village near the capital of Belmopan. Belize in 2015.


Cement mixer, Belize style, in December of 2015.




Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge 09/19/17

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Vol – Stream of Consciousness Saturday – 04/22/17

I can remember growing up and being too young to know exactly what it meant when I heard about the Vols. My parents always got the newspaper and I would see Vol this and Vol that, but it really made no sense to me. Until I got a little older and read the paper for myself. Then I picked up on the fact that the Vol I was hearing about was short for the local College football team, the Tennessee Volunteers.

There is no affection from me, a Virginian for this team. I just got so much of it spoon fed by well-meaning fans that I resolved to never pull for them to win a game. In fact when asked what team I support I will say any SEC team but U.T. In fact my favorite hails from Louisiana, Namely the L.S.U. Tigers.

#SOCS -09/16/17




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Cee’s Black & White Photo Challenge: Candid Shots – 09/14/17

This week the topic is Candid Shots (human or animal). We want to see photographs of unposed people, family, friends, pets, animals in the wild.


Once we left Skagway on Thursday at 4:30 P.M. it was nearly 50 hours later that we docked in Victoria, British Columbia for our last shore excursion, a brief one of barely 5 hours. The rush of people leaving the ship for this quick jot into Canada was a steady stream.


Our excursion in Victoria was a horse drawn buggy ride with a young lady that was so hyper she nearly drove us nuts with her giggles and corny tourist jokes.


When trying to navigate a steep and rocky hiking trail looking your best for the photographer falls further down the priority list.


All good things must end and everyone walking down from the ship at the end of the cruise looked as though they had fought the valiant fight trying to empty the buffet lines.

Cee’s Black & White Photo Challenge – 09/14/17



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Waiting – Weekly Photo Challenge – 09/13/17



During our mission trips to Belize we usually enjoy a “free day” where we become tourists and take in the local sights. On this day we were riding the river ferry back and saw a bus load of others waiting for their chance to visit the Mayan Ruins of Xunantonich.

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Anyone familiar with airports know there is so much waiting that comes with this mode of travel. I hear folks opine many times they hate flying, but I thin it is the only way to travel if you are trying to cover any distance.


I included a photo from this hiking adventure the last time I answered a Weekly Photo Challenge, showing a cliff. For this challenge I am considering the fact that due to the narrowness of the trail you have to wait your turn to ascend or descend.


Weekly Photo Challenge – Waiting








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