Monday, December 24, 2012

First day of winter

Erin, I and the dogs went for a walk along the Willow River in New Richmond last Saturday afternoon and we had a fine time enjoying the beauty of the season.  Of course we took our cameras along and of course we took pictures of the dogs, who otherwise were busy doing more fun things.

Here's an image of the Willow River in winter.

A close up of the icy flow.

The dogs posing nicely in the glow of the setting sun.

Missy in a contemplative pose.

Erin scoping out the fading light.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Thankgiving up north

Erin and I and the dogs went up north to visit our friends Donna and Terry in the R.M. of Piney, Manitoba over the Thanksgiving holiday (the U.S. one, not the Canadian Thanksgiving which is in October) and we had a lovely visit and got in a lot of walks in the woods.  It was very warm the day we left with temperatures in the 50F range, but it got colder soon enough and we had a few inches of snow fall on Thursday and Saturday afternoon & Sunday morning.  We also got in a trip to Roseau, Minnesota (Terry and Donna live very close to the U.S. - Canada border) to check out a craft show at the high school there and an art gallery that Donna likes where I purchased some pottery.  Erin had a great time talking with a local wildlife photographer and I also found a pair of alpaca socks I liked.  Then we stopped by the grocery store to buy a few more food items for our big turkey dinner on Saturday which was very good as Terry loves to cook and is a very good cook indeed.  I did take some photos with my little Canon A2200 camera as part of the trip too, so here they are:

When we first arrived, the cats knew something was up and they didn't like it at all.  They spent the weekend avoiding the dogs, but did have access to the house at least, as the dogs weren't allowed in the house.

The dogs were allowed in an addition called the Treehouse where they had a great view of the outdoors.  They of course wanted more, and they did get to go out often.  This is Missy and Ceilidh at the window.

The dogs also liked just hanging around with us in the Treehouse, with Tucker snuggling up next to Erin here.

Here's Tucker at the edge of the woods on Thursday morning, waiting for us to catch up.

There were two or three deer that came around occasionally when the dogs weren't out, and we also saw a few recent wolf and older bear tracks on our walks.

After it snowed on Thursday, Tucker was having a great time.

The dogs all crashed out on the couch in the Treehouse on Saturday, probably dreaming of leftover turkey.

Ceilidh and Tucker waiting for me to come down from the deck to throw the Chuck-It (a canvas frisbee toy) for them on Sunday morning.

One last walk in the woods later on Sunday morning after some more fresh snow as the front was moving through with a cold wind blowing the snow around.

Yup, it's cold.

Monday, November 5, 2012

My niece's wedding

I went to my niece Madigan's wedding back on September 22nd in Des Moines, Iowa and had a wonderful time with my family, including my father who was Skyped in from his home in Florida for the reception after the ceremony.  I didn't have any formal part to play, although I did pitch in to help after I checked in at the hotel downtown.

First, I headed straight to the reception venue, which was the Triple-A baseball park just south of downtown.  My sisters Andrea (mother of the bride), April and my niece Jamie were busy doing flower arrangements and got me to help even though I had no experience with it.  Which I did o.k., I was told.

My sister Andrea.

My niece Jamie and my mother at the temple.

The bride and groom, with my sister and brother in law Jeff just to the right next to the brightly colored bridesmaids.

Andrew and Madigan exchanging their vows.

And sealing the deal with a broken glass.

Outside the temple afterwards.

The official announement!

The happy bride sharing the news at the reception.

My sister April and Madigan celebrating.

A memento of the new family name, autographed by all of us wishing them much joy and happiness.

Friday, October 26, 2012

Minnesota State Fair

Here's another catch-up post for this new blog.  Erin and I have been regular attendees of the Minnesota State Fair for many years now and we went again this year.  For the first time we went on the fair's opening day because I wanted to hear a couple of bands who were playing on the fair's first two days.  It turned out to be a nice day with only a bit of drizzle at times until 10pm when the rain started just as we boarded the shuttle bus back to where we'd parked.  Highlights included seeing the rabbit and pigeon barn, taking in the art exhibit where Erin enjoyed talking with the Artist of the Day while he was at work, and the "gotta have 'em" garlic fries.  Some photos too:

The line waiting for the shuttle bus at the Roseville High School park 'n ride at 9am.  The cooler in the lower left corner was filled with bottled water that the church next door was handing out to everyone who wanted one, which was very kind of them.

There was this lovely herd of horses just inside the front gate that Erin liked enough to have me pose with them.

Todd Menton and band playing their first set at the International Bazaar stage. We took home a few of Todd's CDs, naturally.

A view of the Mighty Midway from the double ferris wheel.  We also had fun riding the aqua bumper cars, which steered like cows.

Erin liked the gargoyles lurking over one of the midway funhouses.

I had three midway tickets left, which was just enough to play one of the midway games.  I was lucky/good enough to win a prize, and I picked the squid hat.  Erin thought it looked pretty good on me.

Erin enjoying getting off her feet in the sky chair ride on our way over to the pet barn.

An overhead view of brightly colored antique corn shellers in action.

A rainbow coalition of antique farm tractors.  And then the camera battery ran low and that was that for taking pictures. 

Friday, October 19, 2012

May Day Parade 2012

Erin and I and our dog Tucker made it to Minneapolis for the 2012 May Day parade and pageant held in Powderhorn Park.  We enjoyed both and also spent time with friends afterwards enjoying the beautiful spring day.  Erin brought her camera along and took many photos and I thought it would be nice to share them here. 

First, here's Tucker waiting for the start of the parade proving that you can have a big nose and still look handsome.  He was a very good dog and handled all the commotion well.

Here's the start of the parade, heading south down Bloomington Avenue at 31st Street.

The pipeline of oil snaking down the street included a pitch for plastics, and there was the counter-culture equivalent of  Reddy Kilowatt dancing along the side trying to look for a socket to plug into.

Some busy beavers with power tools also came by.  Our friend David Emerson was playing with a pickup band across the street also, thanks to power supplied from the now sadly gone Walker Community Church building.

The beginning of the pageant, featuring brightly colored pantomime horses representing the four cardinal directions (N,S,E,W), led by Clyde Bellacourt in the yellow shirt.

Bowing to the North.  For pantomime horses, they were quite moving to watch as they gracefully paid their respects.

Waiting for the Sun.  I'm leaving out a lot of other players here for the sake of keeping this from going on and on, but I'm hoping to have the photos up in a gallery once I get one organized.