Skywatch Friday

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We had storms in Tulsa on Tuesday. I hate the storms but love the rain and all it brings us. As long as it is not too much. I’m choosy about my blessings.

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I went out to western Oklahoma for a meeting on Monday. I love the big skies and the big hearted, hard working people out there. If you look close you can tell I work for a pipeline company based on all the stuff in the foreground.

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This is evening on the Snake River in Idaho Falls from our trip out there a couple weeks ago. We went to check on my father. He is not doing very well and your prayers on his behalf would be appreciated. My sister is there with him right now. I think I’ll be going back soon.

Skywatch Friday

Ruby Tuesday – From Flowers to Rocks

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An hibiscus in my MIL’s back porch. I just love flowers. Don’t know a thing about them but I don’t need to to with a certified Master Gardener in the house.

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An old water tower with a crumbling old bridge over the Snake River in Idaho Falls, Idaho. I just love mid century infrastructure. Everybody thought back then that we were headed toward an industrial nirvana. Sorry, now its all apps and industrial worries. Where I lived in the west we didn’t have water towers. We had water tanks but they were on the hills or mesas just out of town.

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Red hearts on a rock in Idaho Falls. Sorry for reposting a photo. I cheat like that all the time. I’m liking the finding rocks thing and I hope that people are sensible in what they hide and where they hide them.

I’m linking with Ruby Tuesday

 

InSpired Sunday – Idaho Falls LDS Temple

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One of my favorite sights in Idaho Falls is the LDS Idaho Falls Temple on the Snake River. It is a beautiful building situated on the river. It has clean, classic lines and is visible from a long ways up and down the river.

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It is capped with a fiberglass, gold gilded sculpture of the Mormon Prophet Moroni blowing his trumpet.

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The build was dedicated in 1945 and was just the eight temple dedicated by the church. They have been on quite a building program since. They are not open to non-Mormons in good standing but I was fortunate enough to tour the Oklahoma City Temple prior to its dedication in 2000. I was very impressed with the quality of construction and sumptuousness of materials used in the building and furnishings. Check out this web site for more information about the Idaho Falls Temple and Mormon temples in general. For information about why Mormon’s build temples and their importance to their religion, check this official LDS web site.

I personally am not a Mormon, I am a Christian, but I respect their right to exercise their religion in the way they choose and in these contentious times I really like the idea of a sacred space where the issues of the day are set aside for the spiritual and eternal things in life. No matter what religion one is.

I’m linking with InSPIREd Sunday

Eight Miles on Turkey Mountain

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During the daylight savings time part of the year I run on Turkey Mountain at least once a week. I hadn’t been on the mountain for two weeks for various reasons so Wednesday night I was ready. I was very fortunate the weather was cool, in the high 80;s and it felt great. I wanted to do seven miles.

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There is a powerline right of way that runs north/south the length of the park and the trail is called powerline also. I used to hate it because I loved the feeling of getting lost in the trees on the other trails but I have come to love powerline. It is up and down and very challenging.

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At a crossroads on the northwest side of the mountain is this dryer. It has been there a long time. There is an unofficial trail on the northwest side called the “Pink Trail” it is so convoluted that I have never been to follow it. I am wondering how this appliance ended up here. It is a long ways from the nearest road.

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Turkey Mountain is roughly two miles long and a mile wide so if you want to do a lot of miles and not loop on yourself constantly you have to plan your route. I did a three miles loop on the east side of the park and about a two mile loop on the west side and then hopped over to east side again to get on another trail. I dropped down to yet another trail via this narrow, steep drop between the rocks. The thing is when I first started exploring Turkey Mountain years ago I tried all the trails and then as time went by I narrowed down to a lot smaller set. It is kind of fun to go rediscover old trails. Also you don’t have crazy bicyclists running you down on trails like this.

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There is something about a trail in the woods that I cannot resist.

So I was looking for seven but got eight due to some miscalculation and finished right at dark. Suited me fine. I am looking forward to my 23rd Tulsa Run 15K in October and i would like to run another half marathon in November. So I need to start ramping up my miles. It is not all training though. My running is a form of meditation for me. I get totally lost and live only in the present. In the woods the only thing I worry about is falling on my face and snakes.

What do you do to get away from it all.

Skywatch Friday – Here, There, and Everywhere

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I had a little time in west Tulsa this afternoon so I snuck over to Route66 Village and took a photo of the Frisco 4500 steam powered locomotive on display there. I love the locomotive not only because of it being there at Route 66 Village but because me and and a couple of coworkers found it during a geocaching outing during lunch years ago. We found it out in the middle of nowhere in north Tulsa so I think we were in the know before it was cool. It is a huge engine. Those wheels that it has are each taller than I am. It is truly a monument to early 20th century technology.

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I had been gone from by beloved Turkey Mountain for two weeks and last night got to run on it for eight miles. I love running and knowing that nobody knows where the heck I am. I am fully cognizant that this can really truly bite me in the butt under the right (wrong) circumstances.

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I am a bad blogger. I am the only active blogger still hosting Skywatch Friday. Last week I got hte Skywatch Friday post up so my fellow Skywatchers could link to it but I didn’t get my own post up. Me an my family traveled to Idaho Falls, Idaho to visit my Dad. He is in a very nice assisted living facility but lately has had some difficulties. Sorry, I wasn’t into a blog post. As primitive as my posts are, I still have to be into doing them or they are not going to happen and when I am stressed I can rarely write a post. I can report that things are looking better now.

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One of the beautiful things about Idaho Falls is the Mormon Temple right on the Snake River. It is one of the most beautiful buildings I have ever seen. I am not LDS but I have to tell you that they do their temples right. I have been thinking that when I retire I would like to travel the country and photograph the various Mormon temples because the ones I have seen have been architectural masterpieces. One of them, the temple in Oklahoma City, I toured years ago right after it was constructed but before it was dedicated. The exterior and interior of the temple was sumptuous. Nothing but the best went into its construction and furnishings.

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The Idaho Falls temple just got through with a two year renovation and they got a refinished statue at the top. It is the Angel Moroni blowing his horn to the east.  It is fiberglass and has a new gold fill finish that should last 20 years. Speaking of Idaho Falls, it is in the prime viewing area for upcoming solar eclipse. If you were staying there, check your hotel reservations. Apparently some hotels are cancelling their reservations because they can make more money rebooking the rooms  to somebody else. Good old American Capitalism at work.

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Idaho Falls has a great green belt along their frontage of the Snake River. My wife Heather found some decorated rocks on the greenbelt. I just love stuff like this. People doing things for other people to find and appreciate.She spotted several rocks. I have yet to find my first. How about you? Have you found any decorated locks yet?

I am linking with Skywatch Friday

Monday Meanderings

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I have sad news, Apple is not making any more Ipod Nanos. I have three of them including two of the type above with 32 gig of memory. It holds thousands of songs and I use them every single day. I have a brand new iPhone with 128 gigs and I got a bunch of music on it. In fact I have every song I own on it but I love the micro size of the nano and its simplified interface compared to the IPhone. The only drawback is that it is so small. That is why I have two of the above models. I lost and then found the first one.

I have also gone through three Ipod Touches. My first one didn’t have a camera and when I found out about Instagram I had to get a Touch with a camera. I wore that one out. Yep, the buttons wouldn’t work on it at all. I am now on my third. I think they are wonderful devices. All the benefits an none of the costs of an IPhone. Of course I have an Iphone now also. And an Ipad. I love Apple products. They should love me. Apple has made a lot of money off me when I think about it.

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I love the sign above. 20% off the Ten Commandments. What a deal. Take off your least favorite two commandments and don’t worry about them.  What a deal!!

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It has been a long hot summer and I am totally acclimated now. I ran seven miles on Turkey Mountain, after work, last week and it didn’t bother me despite the mid 90 degree heat. I started running the mountain with a hydration pack last year and it makes all the difference in the world. It is a backpack with a 1.5 liter water bladder with it so I can stay hydrated while I run. I recommend it highly.

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One reason I need to run. I love the Chili and toasted, buttered, french bread that I can get at downtown’s Take2 Restaurant. I am guestimating about 1400 calories. My seven miles were probably 1050 calories. So I’m losing the war!!! But I’m enjoying the battle. You know what I think. You cannot enjoy eating and craft beer and lose weight. You know what a good diet would be? Take a bite or a swig and if it tastes good spit it out. You will be skinny as a rail and miserable in no time.

How about you? What have you been up to lately?

Skywatch Friday All About Town

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This is downtown Tulsa. Thursday Heather came down and we had lunch and then we had ice cream at a fancy new shopping center downtown built out of storage containers. It is called the BoxYard. It is all so fancy and new. They let me in though so it can’t be that fancy.

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This is the view out of our office window Thursday morning. We had a fraction of an inch of moisture an it was welcome. We haven’t had too much rain lately.

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I went running on Tulsa’s Turkey Mountain Urban Wilderness on Wednesday night. I love it on Turkey Mountain.

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This is another view out the office window on a sunny day. This effect is generated by a “Tiny Planet” App on my cell phone. There are lots of them. I love a good cheap app.

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This is our neighborhood last week.Sorry about the grainy photo but I loved the color.

This week I’m linking with Skywatch Friday

Monday Meandering in the Heat

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Son likes to shop for used video games at a place named Vintage Stock. They have several stores in the Tulsa area. They sell not only video games but new and used DVD movies and CD’s. I don’t mind the place, they know Logan and treat him well and I like to head over to Sun and Ski and look at all the outdoor gear and bicycles that I can’t afford. They treat me well also. Anyways, it is in the biggest strip mall in the universe and I like to walk the long ways around instead of shortcutting across a parking lot. Mainly because I don’t like getting run over by wild drives in a parking lot that would do a football stadium proud. (Hold on, there is a point to all this) Anyway in amongst the many empty storefronts (courtesy of online retailers such as Amazon) there are some real businesses including a Japanese restaurant named Shoguns that has decorated their storefront.

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Another view of Shogun’s storefront. I like it when a business does more than absolutely necessary.

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Son went to a friend’s birthday party so Heather and I had a little us time at a local restaurant. Us time is important.

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I’m still sampling beers that I bought in Alabama from our vacation a couple months ago in Alabama.

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Our family likes to go to lots of movies. Theaters now have lifesize displays that encourage one to take pictures of family an friends to post on Instagram and Facebook. Free advertising except the displays are huge and complicated and I’m sure they are expensive. The movie pictured above isn’t going to be out until late this year. The green part of me wonders what happens to the cardboard display. Do they recycle it or do they put it in the dumpster out back. I love the new theaters in town that have the reclining seats. No better way to beat the heat than going to the movies in my book.

Shadow Shot Sunday – Shadows in the Heat

It has been hot here in Tulsa lately. Hot and steamy, just like a good movie (sorry couldn’t resisist). So I’ve been seeking out the shadows.

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Friday was my day off so I went running in the early morning. I captured a leafy shadow selfie.

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I like to walk a little bit downtown at lunch. I found myself this short, twisty turny path, with a bench. For some reason I never see any homeless people sitting in it. Everybody talks about how the economy is improving but it seems to me that the homeless population is exploding. Lots of businesses have taken out benches because so many homeless people sit on them all day. Of course with less benches, the people are now just squatting down on sidewalks. They are not threatening people and I feel for them.

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I love these purple flowers in the shade downtown.

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This is a repaired section of fence in our back yard. The two posts shown got rotted out. You can see their previous remains in the lower right hand corner. Years ago I used to help put posts in for my Dad on our acreage in Eagar, Arizona and then several years later, as summer help, in the oilfields of Texas’ Permian Basin I put in lots of posts for my employer. Fast forward forty years later when my neighbor and I were discussing this and I was thinking I’m going to have to do this. He said, “You know Alan, I am not much into manual labor any more.” Music to my ears. I found a contractor to do it and you know something it three of them two hours to dig the two posts out. It cost a pretty but it was hard work. I contributed to the effort you know. Yes I did, I took photos and passed out bottles of ice cold water. Nearly wore me out.

This is from my new personal weather station in my back yard. You can see, temperatures close to 100 every day an hardly any wind.

How about you? How are you beating the heat? Those of you in the southern hemisphere tell me how you are staying warm.

I’m linking with Shadow Shot Sunday

The Hero with Sam Elliott

We went to see The Hero on a flaming hot Saturday afternoon. The movie stars Sam Elliott, of the craggy face, big mustache, and wonderful voice, playing an actor, Lee Hayden, who had one great film, The Hero, forty years ago and has been living on that fame ever since. He now spends his time doing voice overs for commercials, drinking bourbon, and smoking pot. He has an ex-wife, played by Elliott’s real life wife, Katherine Ross, and an estranged daughter, other than that he keeps to himself until he finds out that he has a very lethal form of cancer, and he immediately doubles down on the pot smoking and whiskey drinking. On an outing to a former actor buddy who is also his pot dealer he runs into Charlotte, played by a smoking hot Laura Prepon, who is also there picking up some weed. So we start this May December romance thing that just appears out of nowhere.

From there the movie plods along and we have lots of long walks on the beach and more drinking and pot smoking along with pills and mushrooms. We have indecipherable dream sequences and a sound track that features lots of iPhone sound effects. Things kind of brighten up a little bit as Hayden starts telling people about his illness. Overall though the movie doesn’t seem to have much of a message and is pretty much a downer. I’m kind of fifty-fifty on it. If you like Sam Elliott, you will love this movie. Otherwise, its a movie that seems confused about itself.

Leave the kiddos at home, lots of casual drug use, a little side boob view of Prepon and some suggestive scenes.