Archive for July, 2008

The Pisgah National Forest.

July 29, 2008

Here are a couple of photos I took yesterday in and around the Pisgah National Forest (North Carolina). 

The Looking Glass Falls

The “Looking Glass” waterfall is truly spectacular, as is the view of the Smokey Mountains from the balcony of my friends’ home.

 

And then there are the moderately mild temperatures . . . marvelous, a full 10 degrees less (and much less humidity) than Greenville, SC.

Ciao for now!

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The Adventure Begins!

July 28, 2008

Just a quick note to advise that my vacation has official begun.  (Posts may be sporadic for the next week or so — internet access [and perhaps time?] may be limited, we’ll see.)

My trek began last Friday after work with a 20-hour drive up to Michigan (with sufficient stops for catnaps and caffeine).   Then bright and early Sunday morning, Dad and I hit the road once more for our 16-hour drive to Greenville, South Carolina.  The Smokey Mountains are gorgeous.

The states that I have encountered thus far: Oklahoma, Missouri, Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Ohio, Kentucky, Tennessee, North Carolina, and South Carolina.  Quite the whirlwind tour!

We will be in Greenville through Thursday before hitting the road once more on Friday to head back to Michigan where I will remain for a few days before heading back to Tulsa.  Anyway, with all the time on the road, I was unable to take any photos, but I promise to shoot a few to post before too long.

I’m thinking that my “23 Things” activity may take a brief hiatus, but I’ll be back at it again in the not too distant future.

Enjoy these “dog days” of summer.

Anniversary Celebration!

July 24, 2008

In honor of the Gun Carryin’ Librarian’s first month anniversary, here’s a wonderfully light and refreshing cheesecake recipe for summer (from George Geary’s “125 Best Cheesecake Recipes”).

Enjoy!  Mmmmm.  Del.icio.us!

Ginger and Honey Cheesecake
Preheat oven to 350° F
(Use a 9-inch cheesecake pan, ungreased, or a springform pan with 3-inch sides, greased.)
CRUST
1½ cups gingersnap cookie crumbs
¼ cup butter (melted)
FILLING
2 packages (8 oz. each) cream cheese, softened
1 cup sour cream
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
2/3 cup packed light brown sugar
¼ cup liquid honey
2 eggs
2 Tablespoons minced candied ginger
½ teaspoon ground ginger
¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
DECORATION
Whipped cream
¼ teaspoon ground ginger
1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  1. CRUST: In a medium bowl, mix cookie crumbs and butter. Press into bottom of cheesecake pan and freeze.
  2. FILLING: In large mixer bowl, beat cream cheese and sour cream on medium-high speed for 3 minutes. Mix in flour, brown sugar, and honey until well-blended, about 2 minutes. Add eggs, one at a time, beating after each addition. Add candied ginger, ground ginger and cinnamon. Pour batter over crust. Bake in preheated over for 55 to 65 minutes or until the top is light brown and the center has a slight jiggle to it. Cool on a rack for 2 hours. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 6 hours before decorating or serving.
  3. DECORATION: Ice to of cake with whipped cream topping (or pipe a ribbon around the border, if desired). Sprinkle with ground ginger and cinnamon.

Wrapping Up Week 4? (Finally!)

July 24, 2008

Has it really taken me nearly three weeks to get through the Week 4 module on Photos and Images?  Granted, not having a digital camera at first slowed me down a bit, but this particular module seemed jam packed with interesting stuff that you really couldn’t absorb all that quickly (at least I couldn’t).  But get through them I did, and had a blast along the way.  I found myself browsing aimlessly through Flickr groups . . . searching the multitude of great photos on every subject imaginable.  The sheer volume of the assorted photo-sharing sites to explore also added time to this module . . . so many toys, so little time.

I would have to say that mashups have been the most challenging Web 2.0 technology that I’ve experienced thus far.  But they certainly offer you a breadth of possibilities in their application — you are only limited by your imagination (or lack thereof, in my case).  

The best thing about SLA’s “23 Things” program is that the mere exposure to these concepts has planted the seeds of possibility . . . you just never know how long the germination period will be.  It may be some time down the road before I have an “aha” moment to where I think up an ingenious application for some of these tools, but if I had not exposed myself to their existence, then the “aha” may not have happened.  Then again, one has to ask oneself: will these technologies continue?  Are they just a “flash in the pan?”  Perhaps they will evolve into something else . . . change is the one constant that we can count on.  Hopefully, we can keep pace with the speed of that change.

Unfortunately, many people use this speed of change (and or fear) to procrastinate their learning (i.e., why learn this now, it will change and/or improve within a month).  Mea culpa!  I too have been guilty of this.  But SLA has provided up with this marvelous opportunity for learning and I have finally made the commitment to myself to move forward, into the 21st century. 

Blogs and wikis have already crept into my organization at the basic information sharing/collaborative levels (with some minor resistance at first) and will hopefully gain greater acceptance and wider use with time (and practice).  But until then . . .

Blog on Wayne,

Wiki on Garth.

Happy Anniversary “Gun Carryin’ Librarian,” you’ve been blogging for a month already!

Larry Hood, As Promised!

July 21, 2008
Buffalo Medicine Man

Comanche Buffalo Prophet

Okay, here’s the very first Larry Hood print that I purchased (in 1985).  As I mentioned earlier, I was particularly drawn to the American Bison imagery and have become an appreciative and dedicated fan of his ever since.  I currently have over 20 of his paintings.  And, while Larry is no longer painting, I’m still on the lookout for any of his works. His brother Rance also paints (in New Mexico), and has a similar style and I’m hoping to one day acquire one of Rance’s paintings for my collection as well. 

From these humble beginnings I’ve managed to amass quite an eclectic (there’s that word again) collection of art from a variety of styles and mediums.  In addition to paintings and prints, I also collect glass art [no Chihuly’s yet – his work is a bit pricey for my budget, but you just never know], sculptures, and ceramics.  My motto, “if I like it, it goes home with me.”  A form of “carpe artum.”

It is truly an addition — perhaps I’m just an “art junkie” — I can never seem to get enough.

The Joys of Technology!

July 20, 2008
Popsicle Shack by Anke Dodson

Popsicle Shack by Anke Dodson

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

My original plan today had been to devote some additional time to SLA’s “23 Things.”  But, alas, the technology had a mind of its own.  While I was able to open and navigate to many SLA pages (and other sites on the web), I could not get the SLA “23 Things” page to load.  Most curious indeed.  Perhaps some maintenance was being performed.

Regardless, I did manage to spend some time this weekend taking digital photographs (of my art collection, of course — a very captive audience).   All I had to do was put them “up against the wall,” as I “searched” for the most “arresting” photo of the bunch.  But, rather than arrest, I just “shot” them all!

So, in lieu of a “23 Things” update, I’ll just post a photo of a painting from another local artist that I’ve started collecting.

Enjoy!

Flickr Reflections (Part 2)

July 17, 2008

All of these photo-sharing sites (Flickr, Fotki, Photbucket, Ovi, Smugmug, Shutterfly, Webshots) certainly provide multiple options for satisfying all of your photographic storage, printing, sharing, and organizing needs.  Just another example of way too many choices confronting the modern day hobbyist. 

But even for a non-photographer-type like myself, I can see the value of this technology for organizing and saving all of your photos (you’ll never have shoeboxes full of unorganized photos again).  No more negatives, no more undeveloped rolls of film sitting around waiting to be processed (if and when you find yourself sufficiently motivated to do so).

I really got the most enjoyment out of exploring all of the different “groups.”   I found myself searching the groups for much longer than I had intended last night.  What a great way to hook up with folks having similar interests.  I did manage to sign up for a couple of groups and will continue to search for more that are compatible with my interests; for now, I just belong to these two:

1.  Librarians who shoot (photos, not guns . . . oh well, I liked the play on words) and,

2.  Neckties (I’m somewhat of a clothes horse and will soon be documenting my collection of neckties on Flickr as well).

Groups to add eventually (after some more exploration): a running group, a police group, a cooking/baking group, a travel group, a reading group, and maybe a piano or music group of some kind.  Ah, the possibilities . . . and in my spare time (what’s that?) . . .

Sleep.

Humpday Humor!

July 16, 2008

Here’s the latest from www.despair.com

Enjoy!

First Photo Uploads!

July 14, 2008
A Quiet Place

A Quiet Place

The digital camera seems to be working just fine.  Here are a few paintings by one of my favorite local artists, Joanna Duck (her style favors the palette knife).

Grand Stand Aspen

Grand Stand Aspen

I’ve been collecting art since 1985 when I first became enthralled with a Comanche painter by the name of Larry Hood (brother of Rance Hood) — I’m quite fond of the American Bison and Larry has been able to capture the Bison image or theme frequently in his paintings.  I’ll post some of Larry’s paintings in the not too distant future.

Crow Creek Reflection

Crow Creek Reflection

 
My collection is extensive and I’ll add some new photos or images from time to time, so check back often. 
I’m going to have to work on my “lighting” and/or flash alternatives . . . the colors are a bit muted.  If I can figure out a solution for highlighting their actual “brightness” and color, I’ll repost these photos at a later date.
 
 

Phenomenal Run!

July 14, 2008

I warned you that this site was going to be somewhat eclectic . . . I just had to blog this morning about my wonderful run.  I took advantage of an unusually cool morning (65 degrees) — anything under 70 degrees this time of year is a blessing — to do a long run (10 miles) and it was a truly amazing run.  Not my longest, not my fastest, but an exceptional event nonetheless.  I was in the “zone” and it seemed effortless (for a change).  What a great way to start the week — energized and ready to go!