Category Archives: Uncategorized

Our World – The Taste of Summer

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I am not a vegetarian by any means but in the summertime I love fresh produce and fruit. The Tulsa suburb of Bixby used to be known for their truck farms and fresh produce. Will guess what the the flat lands with rich soil that make it suitable for farming is also loved by developers for building thousands of houses in nice subdivisions. So the truck and grass farms are rapidly disappearing but some of the produce places live on supplied from areas further away or even Texas, Arkansas, and Georgia.

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From a recent visit, some fresh peaches from Porter, Oklahoma.

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Local vine ripened tomatoes.

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From left to right, fresh green beans, new potatoes, corn on the cob and okra.

Luckily I’m married to a woman who knows what to do with fresh produce. We eat well all sorts of produce all summer long. Green beans and new potatoes, watermelon, cantaloupe, orkra, corn on the cob (and chowder), various peppers, marinated cucumbers and onion, and zucchini. Sign me up!! Not to mention peaches, plums, blue berries, blackberries, cherries and other fruit.

How about you? Do you have access to fresh fruit and vegetables? Do you like them?

I am linking with Our World Tuesday

Exchanging Postcards with Postcrossing

One of the things I really like about blogging is being able to personally communicate with people around the world who I normally would never encounter. The exchanges are pretty brief but over time I think I have a pretty good idea of who the person is and what their life is like and I think they have an idea of who I am.

Several years ago I joined Postcrossing, a free online service that matches up people to send and receive postcards. You don’t really exchange postcards with one person. You request an adddress from the site and they send it to you and once that party gets your card, then your address is given to somebody else, so it is kind of like a chain. By now I have sent and received about 217 cards over the several years I have participated.

You send a card and it takes about 10 days to a month for the party to get it and then it takes about that amount of time to get a card back. It works out that if I send a card once a week, then I get a card about once a week. Remember the days when getting the mail was fun? Postcrossing makes it fun again. I love getting the cards and reading the messages and making just another tiny little connection with somebody on the other side of the world.

The latest card I got is this one from somebody in Portugal. They wrote about tiles and their importance in Portugal and how they are used extensively in the buildings. I just love little tidbits of information like that. So far I have either sent or received cards from 43 different countries. It is a lot of fun. The site is free to use although you can donate if you want. The expensive part is buying the international stamps. Postcards can be as little or as much as you want to pay.

People are gracious about any card they get but in general they don’t like multi-photo postcards nor do they like advertising postcards. When you get a person’s address there is a link to a profile where they can state what their preferences are. I buy postcards a lot so I can generally get something close to what they like. So far it seems that the Oklahoma themed cards are the most popular especially those with a Native American theme such as maps showing where the original territories were.

So if you want to do a little armchair travelling Postcrossing may be for you.

9/80 Update

For the last several years I get every other Friday off. Over the course of two weeks I work nine days for 80 hours. I love it. I got criticized by a former boss for actually taking the day off. It was like huh??

So this Friday, Heather had to go teach an exercise class so I went to get the oil changed in my car. Afterward i went looking for a geocache in this neighborhood park which made me a little nervous because it said “residents only” and then after I went across the bridge it looked like I would have to walk across the fringes of peoples back yards to reach the cache. So, as we say in the energy industry, I plugged and abandoned that plan. I like geocaching away from people, not in their back yards.

Heather and I went to a yin yoga class at our gym. It was great. The instructor had us fold our bodies in pretzels. At least it felt that way. I have very stiff hamstrings and the instructor had me do the modified pretzel. We did the dragon, the pigeon, the swan, and a few others. I have hit yoga pretty hard this year. I think this was my 18th class this year. I may not be able to do the full bore pretzel pose but I am a lot more flexible. Not that anybody but me can tell. It was the International Day of Yoga today, did you know that. It is also the Summer Solstice. Opportunities for all sorts of pagan worship!!

Everybody got home and we decided to go eat lunch at Torchy’s Tacos. Son Logan is kind of like me. He loves lunch!! I haven’t missed lunch in a long time. If I ever do, worry about me. He had a burrito, Heather had one taco and I had two. I love their brisket taco and I tried their ahi tuna taco. Not bad for raw fish is what I say. I don’t have to worry about people stealing bites of it from me.

Next to Trader Joes where I got very sad news. They are not selling my beloved pumpernickel pretzels any longer. They said they lost their supplier. Sad is what I have to say. I found some Skyhook Wine. Telling young engineers to get a skyhook lined up is a long favored gentle hazing by older people to younger people in the energy business. Along with getting a stripe of paint and other things. All in good fun. We don’t do hazing any longer. Probably for the best. I will say that Trader Joes is not where I go when I want to spend twenty bucks on a bottle of wine. Nope, I’m a two buck chuck guy all the way. Even if it is more than two bucks these days.

That is Heather’s hands picking out tomatoes and Dotson Produce in Bixby. There is a meme in facebook that says “It’s difficult to think anything but pleasant thoughts while eating a homegrown tomato” (by Lewis Gizzard) These are not home grown but slice those babies up, put some salt and pepper on them, parmesan if you are feeling fancy, and what you have is pure heaven. I dare you to think an unpleasant thought while eating them.

And that is about it. Pretty exciting huh? Great day off is what I say.

Skywatch Friday – on the River

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I am loving the big blue skies and the white fluffy clouds we are temporarily having. I say temporary because it clouds up and rains quite a bit these days.

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The Arkansas River is still high but within its banks and it is muddy as a soaked cow pasture.

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I love the big cottonwoods on the river. Even if some of them are suffering from storm damage.

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Almost all the River Parks trails are open now. They had a big sinkhole to fill in and repave here. There is still considerable work to be done getting the lights going again and fixing the plumbing at the restrooms. There was considerable damage to the river banks and they are trying to figure out how to rebuild and stabilize them.

So that’s the latest with the sky situation in Tulsa, Oklahoma. How they looking where you live?

I am linking with Skywatch Friday

Skywatch Friday – Back to the Trails

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Wednesday night I went for a little run on Turkey Mountain for the first time in months. With all the rains and storms we have had and life in general, I just haven’t made it for a long time. Today was glorious though, cool and dry and as you can see the skies were spectacular.

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I love those big fluffy clouds. We have not had them for a long time.

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See that grass, I am not crouching down in the grass I am standing up. We have had lots of rain and the ground is still soaked. At home I haven’t even taken the winterization off our sprinkler system.

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The trails were nice, especially this dappled section.

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There is usually not much color this time of year but I saw a little bit on my outing. This pink bloom for one.

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And this yellow flower.

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And even a random leaf on the trail had some color to it.

I walked/ran about three miles and I loved it. I had forgotten how relaxing and meditative being out in the woods can be.

What about you? What do you do to relax?

I am linking with Skywatch Friday.

ABC Wednesday – W is for …

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Wagon Wheel – where son Logan used to take his horseback riding lessons.

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Wanted Posters – nope, my photo is not up there.

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Warship – the USS Missouri now anchored at Pearl Harbor. The Japanese surrendered on her deck ending World War II. She was brought out of mothballs and refurbished during the Reagan administration. My brother had the honor of being on the crew when she was christened in San Francisco back then. Hopefully she will have a long retirement in Hawaii.

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Water Towers – I love the Hot, Cold, and Warm towers in Bartlesville, Oklahoma.

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and Wife!! Here is mine at the grocery store.

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And Will Rogers Birthplace – near Oolagah, Oklahoma northeast of Tulsa a ways. One of those great little landmarks that is definitely worth seeing if you happen to visit northeast Oklahoma.

I am linking with ABC Wednesday – come join the fun!!

Skywatch Friday – First June 2019 Edition

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This is a shot of the electrical transmission substation at Keystone Dam. I don’t know a thing about such facilities but it looks a little old to me. I look at the Dam’s status every day and they haven’t generated any electricity in the few weeks I have been checking up on them.

Heather and I went to the Jimmy Buffett Concert here in Tulsa earlier this week. He put on a great show. Not only was the music good but they displayed huge high definition video of ocean, beach, and sky scenes on the backdrop behind the band. It was kind of mesermerizing. We love the beach and are headed there later this summer as part of our family vacation.

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This is from my sister’s property near Colorado Springs during our recent trip there. Colorado never fails for great skies. Check out Ellen’s blog and check out her and husband Irv’s brand new fifth wheel camper.

Your de Tulsa

This is a scene from the the Tour de Tulsa that I did a few weeks ago before all the rain and floods. It was only a 20 mile or so ride. I have another ride coming up Sunday for Tulsa Tough. It is going to be 32 hilly miles. I hope that I am up for it. The furthest I have ridden on my back is 25 and I was okay after it. I’ve learned that on these rides many people don’t really bust a gut, they take it leisurely. That will be me. I am one of the few people who ride them using a big heavy hybrid bike instead of one of the sleek ones. I need one with a big wide seat to, well you know, match my big wide seat. So wish me luck.

I am linking with Skywatch Friday.

ABC Wednesday – “V” is for …

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V is for Vacuum Tube Tester – found this one in a history museum!! I remember when all the drug stores and hardware stores had them.

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V is for venomous snakes!! Nope, I am out of here with the snakes.

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V is for Vienna Sausages. I ate a bunch of them years ago. I haven’t head any for decades and intend to keep it that way.

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V is for Vietnamese Pot Bellied Pigs. They make great pets and are pretty good with kids. No I do not want one.

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V is for violin. This is Woody Guthrie’s. He took it to sea with him when he was with the Merchant Marine during WWII. His boats got sunk a few times but he and this violin survived.

Come check out other V’s at ABC Wednesday

Skywatch Friday – to the Moon and Beyond

I don’t have a theme for this post besides the Sky. So here goes!

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This is the last full moon that we had a couple weeks ago. I love the Native American names for the various moons. This one is known as the Corn Planting Moon, or the Milk Moon, or the Flower Moon.

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I shot this with an HDR camera on my phone while stopped at a light. It may be overdone a little but I kind of like it.

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This is from one of my bicycling outings.

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This is a sky over a stripper oil well near a city park in north Tulsa.

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Our local AA Minor League baseball, the Tulsa Drillers schedules day games during the week. This year I took a few hours of vacation, bought me a ticket and went to see them. There is nothing like daytime baseball. I enjoyed myself thoroughly.

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Another sight from biking, this one along the Arkansas River. With the flooding the RiverParks are closed now. Who knows how much damage they sustained.

I hope you have a great week!

I am linking with Skywatch Friday

Our World – Tulsa Oklahoma Flooding – 2019

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We went to Colorado last week and while we were gone, it flooded in our home town of Tulsa, Oklahoma. Our home is high and dry but not everybody is so lucky.

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I take pains not to be a problem and so I didn’t visit where people’s houses were flooded. I took a couple trips to the RiverParks area of Tulsa, a strip of public park along both sides of the Arkansas River as it flows through town.

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In 27 years of living here I have only seen the trail covered for a 50ft section or so once or twice. Now, whole section of the trail are under water and the water is a foot or two higher than what is shown in these photos.

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These are newer photos from Sunday when son and I visited the northern section of the RiverParks. The water is even deeper now and is expected to get worse over the next week or so as it continues to rain in the Arkansas River watershed.

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Check out the Tulsa World site for more photographs of the flooding.

The Arkansas River is flowing swiftly. It now reminds of me the Snake River in Idaho which also moves swiftly.

So what is happening? The Arkansas River gathers water from a huge area. The basin in drains ranges from Leadville and Colorado Springs, Colorado and almost to Santa Fe, New Mexico to Tulsa. It all funnels through Keystone dame above Tulsa a few miles and it is way over flood stage behind the dam.

And to add insult to injury, we have had tornadoes. We spent Saturday night in our desigated safe room, our downstairs guest bathroom, with our cats and dogs in crates and we three humans holding flashlights and our cell phones waiting for the all clear. Our son said at one point that it was all a roll of the dice! Yep that is right son.

We are lucky though. The tornado passed about a mile south of us and our house is high and dry. So we are blessed but are remembering those who are not so fortunate as us.

Here is a link to a live infographic by US Army Corps of Engineers for the Keystone Dam showing lake levels, inflows, outflows, and other data.

I am linking with OurWorld Tuesday