Monthly Archives: February 2011
Tuesday is my brother-in-law’s birthday and we celebrated it this evening with a nice Sunday dinner, birthday cake and balloons. When my mother-in-law was planning this dinner she asked Keith to make a pina colada cake. Of course, Keith was happy to. He baked the cake, topped it with lighted candles and brought it to his younger brother!
Nearby and waiting to help, was Eric’s grandson who helped him blow out the candles.
I could show you another photo of Purrkins watching as Keith cut the chicken. Or, I could show you the french bread as Keith was smearing garlic butter on it. Or, better yet, the flaming garlic bread as it was coming out of the oven. Yes, flaming since it got a bit too close to the fire. But, no, I’m showing you my brussels sprouts.
Brussels sprouts are a cruciferous vegetable meaning they are in the cabbage or mustard family and, though I’ve heard they are one of the most disliked vegetables, I love them. The correct spelling is with the ‘s’ since they are named after the city of Brussels in Belgium.
If you’re still thinking about that flaming bread just know that Keith blew the flames out in time so the smoke detector didn’t come on and I employed the technique of scraping the burned parts off and salvaged my piece. Keith, on the other hand, ate his piece of bread, burned parts and all.
We drove about an hour south to the Chickasaw National Recreational Park in Sulphur, Oklahoma today. We spent quite a bit of time looking at the Little Niagara waterfall. Waterfall sounds are soothing to me and as I watched the water rapidly move around the rocks and through the crevices I was mesmerized much like people get when they stare into a campfire.
One of our next stops in the park was Black Sulphur Springs. The small pavilion there was built in 1929 and a historical marker provides some background. Apparently, it has been a spot for swimming and picnicing since the early 1900s. It is attractive though it smells of sulphur. Interestingly, there is an abundance of shells there, not a too familiar sight in Oklahoma. Among the sand there were shells laying beside flowering weeds near the waters edge.
We left this park and drove a short distance to Turner Falls following the highway that used to be the primary road to travel from Oklahoma City to Dallas. We stopped at the Turner Falls View point and admired the large and beautiful falls.
On our way home we stopped at the Canadian River Winery in Slaughterville and bought some wines they make including: Chocolate Merlot (that comes highly recommended by a co-worker), Noble Blush, and Sangria.
The road home is right beside the Noble IOOF Cemetery so we pulled in and visited the graves of several loved ones. Before heading back home we ate dinner at a Mexican restaurant in Norman. A pleasantly paced day filled with peaceful sights.
To view our photos from today visit 2011 Sulphur & Turner Falls set on flickr.
On my way home from work I noticed two gnarly and fascinating trees that I have driven by hundreds of times yet never really noticed. Today, I pulled into the driveway that runs beside the trees that leads to the staff parking lot of the church. I rolled down my window to get a better look, got my camera out of my new bag and snapped a few photos from inside my vehicle.
It’s hard to imagine that I pass by these trees every day yet had never really ‘seen’ them.
After only a few minutes & photos a man, who was stopped at the nearby stop sign, yelled at me through his open window “I’m reporting you as a trespasser!” I instantly turned to look in his direction and was momentarily confused. The single car driveway where I stopped leads to a parking lot and has a sign that indicates it is for church staff and just below that sign is another faded and barely readable one that says no trespassing. There is no way a person passing by could read that sign so that guy must be familiar with the church grounds.
Thinking about this made me recall the trespasser verison of the Lord’s Prayer and how ironic the situation seems. I will definetly think differently about those gnarly trees and church the next time I drive by.
Of note today: I completed our 2010 income taxes and will file them in a few days. Kelsey is home right now catching up on some of the recorded shows. Home is for relaxing.
At least 99 bottles, probably more, however the beer is gone. These empty bottles will be replenished with home brewed beer. Keith has the vast majority of his empty bottles neatly stacked in a cabinet. When you open that cabinet you see lots and lots of circles.
I don’t like beer but I wonder if the fact that I’ve been thinking about having to do our taxes is related to my thinking about beer. 98 bottles of beer on the wall, 98 bottles of beer, take one down, pass it around, 97 bottles of beer on the wall.
I mentioned yesterday that I received a kit to test my mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA). In case you were wondering what that is, I thought I’d tell you more and show you a photo of the kit. The test requires swabs from inside my mouth and the kit has three swabs and three tubes with a liquid to prevent bacteria growth. After scraping my cheek I put the swabs in the included mailer and will send the tubes with the swabs inside to the lab for testing. It takes about 8 weeks to get the results.
The lab will be conducting DNA testing for ancestral heritage only, unlike DNA testing for medical purposes, which includes genetic diseases and disorders. This will test my mtDNA, which is the genetic marker that each mother passes down to her male and female children. It remains unchanged for thousands of years making it possible to identify cousins around the globe.
There’s a separate kit available for males that tests the Y chromosome, which is passed only from father to son. Earlier this year my son took that test and we’re still waiting for the rest of the results.
My brother has agreed to do the Y-DNA test so I’ll order that later when there’s another good sale. Our father was adopted into a fabulous family and I’ve done a good amount of genealogy of that family. However, researching our biological ancestors is something I haven’t done much on so those results will be interesting.
Here’s a link that has several videos to help explain DNA testing for genealogical purposes.
When I arrived at home today there were three packages waiting for me. It was like Christmas! One was a tripod with two levels on it (I left that one for Keith to open). The second package was a kit to test my mitochondrial DNA for genealogical purposes. The third package had a macro conversion lens and a new camera bag.
I played with the macro conversion lens tonight but will post photos using it another day. Instead, today’s photo is of the lens and my camera bag that doesn’t really look like a camera bag. It’s 13.5″ x 5.5″ x 9.5″ with padding and removable dividers. When I told Keith I wanted a functional camera bag that didn’t look like a camera bag he just shook his head and said he couldn’t imagine even ever thinking of anything other than function as a criteria. Hmm, guess it’s more of a girl thing? Maybe I’ll be more likely to take my camera more places with this bag purse.
Perhaps you’ll tire of photos of Purrkins long before this year is up but he’s just so darn cute that I have to take photos of him. This evening he was on my lap as the sun was setting and he so enjoyed how the sun was shining in his face. Just look at that expression. I knew if I got up to get my DSLR the moment would gone but my iPhone was right next to me so I used it. Then, for fun, I added the lens flare filter in Photoshop.
He is so in to relaxation.
Of note today: A Work Day. Then this evening I watched the show “Searching for…” on the Oprah Winfrey Network (OWN). It’s a tear jerker deluxe but very fascinating to me on many levels. It’s about a genealogist who reunites people.
On display in our living room is a wood carved chest that my husband’s grandfather sent home to his children when he was in China as a Merchant Marine. This is a view of one portion of the top of the chest. It has carvings all over the front as well as each of the four sides. Inside it is lined with either cedar or sandlewood so when you open it you get a nice whiff of the wood. Inside it says:
Golden Dragon Co.
Wood Carved Factory
Chest Factory Goods
Of note today: Keith cooked a nice meal and spent some time repairing one of our toilets again (always a fun way to spend an afternoon and I appreciate it very, very much). I worked on transcribing another old letter and then wrote about it this post, Mineola, Trains and Albid, for my other blog.
Purrkins was on the other side of the living room when I was playing with our new 2x telephoto lens that arrived in the mail today. I wasn’t quite ready to take a photo but when I saw him yawn, I snapped the photo. I think it’s hilarious. He looks like he’s yelling or going to take a big bite. Click on the photo to see those teeth even better.
With this lens you can extend the reach of your camera and all you do is attach this 2x auxiliary lens to the front of your lens. It’s inexpensive and pretty cool.
Of note today: Paid bills (yuk), Travis stopped by for a few minutes (yeah) and we got a new toy in the mail (yeah). It’s been a good day so far.