Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Photo #179/365: Waiting for Riders

It's always interesting to go to the state fairgrounds for events. At the same time lots are people are there for events like the art show, the rest of the grounds and the rides remain strangely deserted. A perfect example are these chairs on the skylift, just waiting for riders.

Photo #178/365: Rake Face

I saw this guy at Art Fest Midwest. I call him Rake Face. I'm always interested in folk art made from recycled materials. It's light hearted, humorous art, and it shows a lot of imagination.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Photo #177/365: Daisy

In between thunderstorms, I managed to get some yard work done today. Before the afternoon storm got going, I snapped this photo. I love daisies! These are now blooming in my flower garden. I always think of the movie "You've Got Mail" when I talk about daisies, but daisies are a cheerful flower.

Photo #176/365: Steel Flowers

This was a big weekend for Des Moines events. Friday through Sunday was the Des Moines Arts Festival, which is held on the streets surrounding the downtown Sculpture Garden. The weather is often unkind to this festival, and this was true yesterday.

Rather than fight the weather, I went to the other art show, Art Fest Midwest, which is held inside, at the Varied Industries Building at the Iowa State Fairgrounds. I prefer this show anyway, because they feature Iowa and midwest artists. This show also has small pieces of art which are within my means. I frequently buy from the artist who creates this stainless steal yard art. I have several of these stainless steel flowers and butterflies in my yard. This year I talked myself out of buying another one, but it was very tempting.

Friday, June 24, 2011

Photo #175/365: Snacks

The facilitators may not tell you this, but a very important part of any professional development or workshop situation, particularly all day PD is having a few snacks on hand. Several of us brought treats, but the real hit was this bowl of S'mores Snack Mix that Becky Hutchens made for us. Not only is it colorful, it was delicious.

The recipe came from the most recent Hy-Vee Season's magazine, or you can find it on-line at the Hy Vee website.

S’mores Snack Mix

Source: Hy-Vee Seasons Summer 2011.

All you need:
Hy-Vee honey graham crunch cereal
Mini marshmallows
Milk chocolate

All you do:
Mix ingredients in a bowl, then lay out on parchment paper and drizzle with melted milk chocolate. Let sit 5 to 10 minutes, break into pieces and serve.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Photo #174/365: Give Blood, Give Life

Once again it is time for the annual blood drive. Today was also the final day of my class. After class I went out to Valley West Mall to give blood. It turns out that after I donated blood today, I am now a Gallon Donor. There were lots of men in uniform when I was there. As if they don't give enough already, there were lots of National Guard soldiers waiting patiently for their chance to give blood.

Now that my class is over, I don't have any other school commitments until August. I feel like summer vacation has really begun at last!

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Photo #173/365: Read With Red

On Monday afternoon, Jacci, Mom and I met for tea at Gong Fu. This was Jacci's first outing since her knee surgery. Wherever we go, Jacci and I usually bring our technology or something to read. I love her brightly colored red case, so I snapped this photo of her iPad, iPhone and eye glasses sitting on the table.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Photo #172/365: Stained Glass

This week I am attending a staff development class with others from my school. Our class is being held at Plymouth Congregational Church. I have been to other meetings at this church, but this is the first time that I have spent an extended period of time here. I have always loved stained glass, so when I noticed these windows from the outside, I took some time to explore. They are the windows of a small chapel located just around the corner from our classroom.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Photo #171/365: Donner's Garden

I didn't have a chance to take any photos today, but I took these on Saturday when I was at my sister's house. As I mentioned in an earlier post, my brother-in-law is a avid gardener. I took all these photos in his flower garden.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Photo #170/365: Terry's Horses

We celebrated my Uncle Bob's 85th birthday out at my cousin Terry's house. She has an acreage north of Earlham. Ever since she was kid, she loved horses. So it's not surprising that as an adult she would buy a place where she could also have horses. This is my cousin Cheri's daughter, Shelby, with the horses Makayla Joy, and Max. Max actually has a much more regal name, but I can't remember the whole thing.

Shelby is experienced with horses, and she rides all the time, so she is much more comfortable than I am with these two.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Photo #169/365: Donner's Flowers

My sister is recovering from knee surgery, so I went out to visit her for a while. Then I walked around and snapped photos. My brother-in-law is an avid gardener. The lilies are beautiful right now.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Photo #168/365: Duck Family Afloat

Ducks seem to be a theme this week, but that's just a coincidence. Bailey and I have been going to Copper Creek Lake Park to walk. We went for the first time on Wednesday, and again today. There were lots of geese and ducks. This duck family decided to hit the water when we came along the path.

Photo #167/365: Good Luck Duck

My sister had knee surgery yesterday. After some good natured teasing with the doctor about which knee he was operating on, he whipped out his permanent marker and labeled her legs with a big red "No" on her right knee, and this "Good Luck Duck" on her left leg. Her surgery went well, and she is now on the road to recovery. Not only is he a good surgeon, he's a pretty good artist, too.

Photo 166/365: First Day Lilly

Some of my perennials are finally beginning to bloom. These are the first Day Lillies of the year.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Photo #165/365: Hot Dog

This morning I worked at the Huntington Learning Center out by Jordan Creek. Afterwards, I did my shopping at Costco, and you can't go to Costco without stopping in the food court afterwards. It's hard to beat $1.50 for a hot dog and pop!

Photo #164/365: Pinwheel

The weather lately has made if difficult to accomplish much in the way of yard work. As a Mother's Day present each year, I plant flowers in my mom's back yard. Often, like this year for instance, this doesn't get done until after school is out. Weather this year has either been 90 degrees or it's been chilly and rainy, or my schedule doesn't allow it. I finally shopped for and bought flowers on Sunday, but by the time I took them to Mom's house, it started to rain. Yesterday, since I didn't have to work, I planned to go over in the early afternoon. Around lunchtime the skies grew darker, and we had another thunderstorm. Finally I was able to do it last night.

This pinwheel is located in the flower bed at the back of her yard. She originally purchased it to take to the cemetery, but she was concerned it would disappear, so she placed it back here. I'm really glad she did, because I enjoy seeing it.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Photo #163/365: Sunday Dinner

I haven't been doing much cooking lately, and I've been making way too many stops for fast food. Today I used some of my Farmer's Market finds to make a delicious dinner; roasted asparagus and Yukon Gold potatoes, Chicken Cordon Bleau, and a glass of wine. I should do this more often!

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Photo #162/365: Summerset Winery

This morning I decided to go the the Downtown Farmer's Market for the first time this year. I really haven't gone very much in recent years and it's changed a lot from the first years of the Saturday market. It is huge! It's always extremely crowded, and I'm not much of a fan of crowds. It was fun to walk around. There were several booths for Iowa Winery's and the best part was, they have samples! I like Rieslings, so I tried the Kiss Me from the Summerset Winery in Indianola, Iowa. It was good. In fact, I ended up buying a bottle, which makes this shopping trip a success.

Friday, June 10, 2011

Photo #161/365: Groomer Day

What makes a dog look this sad and forlorn? It's having to spend the day at the groomer. I'm sure it wasn't fun, because he was a very dirty dog who was in great need of a bath and haircut.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Photo #160/365: Petunia Mosaic

I'm still playing with the website, Big Huge Labs. So here is another mosaic. This Petunia was given to me by one of my students on the last day of school. I'll do something different tomorrow. I promise!

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Photo #159: Rose Mosaic

This morning when I was on the way to work at Huntington, I noticed these roses growing on this white arbor. I didn't have time to stop then, but I did on my way home. I loved the green leaves and the red of the roses against the white of the trellis.

The mosaic was created at the website, Big Huge Labs. I learned about it from people in my new Flickr group for the June, July and August Photo Project. #JJAProject. You can have a lot of fun on this website!

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Photo #158: Schools Out!

It's official! School is out for the summer and my classroom is closed. When you see it empty like this with chairs up, it's hard to imagine all the noise and activity that went on in this room during the past 180 days.

Monday, June 6, 2011

Photo #157/365: Volunteers

When I moved into my house ten years ago, French Hollyhocks were growing in the flowerbed by the back door. The problem is they come up everywhere. These are volunteers mixed in with my lillies and daisies.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Photo #156/365: Big Creek State Park

Instead of working on my long "To Do" list, I decided to drive up to Big Creek State Park. Temperatures got up to 94 today, so it was crowded at the beach and around the marina. Lot's of people were boating and fishing. I was just there to enjoy the view and take a few photos.

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Photo #155/365: Jeff and Shannon's Wedding

Today was Jeff and Shannon's Wedding. They were married at Immanuel Lutheran Church in Adair, Iowa. Jeff is my cousin Cindi's son, so that makes him my second cousin. Jeff and Shannon have gone together since high school.

Of all the weddings I've ever been to, I've never seen the wedding party leave on a hay rack pulled by a tractor before. They had a lot of fun riding around town before they came to the reception.

Friday, June 3, 2011

Photo #154/365: Hostas

I love Hostas, especially this time of year when their foliage is lush and thick. Insects have not yet begun to dine on them. I like the textures and colors of the leaves.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Photo #153/365: Pink Peonies

Peonies are blooming all over the place. I love the big beautiful blooms, and they smell great. These pink peonies are at the end of my neighbor's driveway.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Photo #152/365: Strawberries

I bought these beautiful strawberries at Costco, and they are just as delicious as they look. The only problem with buying fruit at Costco is you get a lot of it. I hope I can eat them fast enough to use them all.