Breakfast & Queen

Now and Then #15

Today’s photo: Breakfast at the Old South, January 15 2018, Russellville, Arkansas (Apple iPhone 6s)

Today’s photo1: Breakfast at the Old South, January 15 2018, Russellville, Arkansas (Apple iPhone 6s)

Entergy ANO retirees meet here for breakfast every other Monday, unless it’s a holiday like January 1 was.  Since I had been working as a contract instructor up until 4 weeks ago, I haven’t attended very often in the last couple of years.  I’ve known some of the people there this morning for over 30 years.

In the post-processing for the Old South photo, I cropped the image and edited out several power lines that went across the picture.

Photo Favorite: American Queen Riverboat on Mississippi River at Burlington, Iowa, September 26, 2012 (Pentax K-r)

Photo Favorite2: American Queen Riverboat on Mississippi River at Burlington, Iowa, September 26, 2012 (Pentax K-r)

On our trip back home from Wisconsin in 2012, we traveled along the upper Mississippi River and encountered the American Queen several times.

American Queen

American Queen is said to be the largest river steamboat ever built. The ship was built in 1995 and is a six-deck recreation of a classic Mississippi riverboat, built by McDermott Shipyard for the Delta Queen Steamboat Company. Although the American Queen’s stern paddlewheel is indeed powered by a steam plant, her secondary propulsion, in case of an emergency and for maneuverability around tight areas where the paddle wheel can not navigate, comes from a set of diesel-electric propellers known as Z-drives on either side of the sternwheel. She has 222 state rooms for a capacity of 436 guests and a crew of 160. She is 418 feet (127 m) long and 89 feet (27 m) wide.3

The American Queen Steamboat Company offers “the most inclusive river cruise experience in North America with pre-cruise hotel stays, wine and beer with dinner, shore excursions in each port and tantalizing, regionally-inspired cuisine. The lower region of the Mississippi exposes you to centuries-old shaded oak trees, elegant antebellum plantations and Civil War memorials – it’s like taking a step back in time. The upper region of the Mississippi reveals the inspiration behind Mark Twain’s famed literary classics while acquainting you with storybook American towns, vibrant cities and indigenous wildlife.”4


  1. Today’s Photo is a photo that is almost always taken the day of the blog post.  In some instances, posts may be backdated if internet access is not available on the day of the photo or other reasons prevent posting Now and Then.
  2. Photo Favorite is a randomly selected older photograph from a batch of photos specifically “curated” for Now and Then.
  3. American Queen – Wikipedia
  4. American Queen Steamboat Company

Note: Reference links were accessed on the date the blog post was published, unless otherwise stated.

Arkansas, Iowa, Now and Then, photo favorite, photography, river, today’s photo
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Sky & Cliff

Now and Then #14

Today’s photo: Dark sky on the way home from the gym, 3 PM, Sunday, January 14, 2018, Russellville, Arkansas (Apple iPhone 6s)

Today’s photo1: Dark sky on the way home from the gym, 3 PM, Sunday, January 14, 2018, Russellville, Arkansas (Apple iPhone 6s)

We usually skip the gym on Sundays, but, as cold as it is – barely above freezing – , we decided to go to the gym to get out for a bit… and get some exercise.  We had a trace of snow on the ground this morning, the first for this winter.

Photot Favorite: Cliff Palace (cliff dwelling), Mesa Vere National Park, Colorado, September 13, 2009 (Pentax K10D)

Photo Favorite2: Cliff Palace (cliff dwelling), Mesa Vere National Park, Colorado, September 13, 2009 (Pentax K10D)

This is actually a fairly unique mid-morning photo of Cliff Palace – there are no people in the picture. The photo was taken between one group departing to climb back up to the top of the “mesa” and the arrival of the next group of ranger led visitors. We were at the top waiting our group’s turn to go down the trail to the ruins.

Cliff Palace

Cliff Palace is the largest cliff dwelling in North America. The structure built by the Ancestral Puebloans is located in Mesa Verde National Park in their former homeland region. The cliff dwelling and park are in the southwestern corner of Colorado, in the Southwestern United States. Tree-ring dating indicates that construction and refurbishing of Cliff Palace was continuous approximately from 1190 CE through 1260 CE, although the major portion of the building was done within a 20-year time span. The Ancestral Pueblo that constructed this cliff dwelling and the others like it at Mesa Verde were driven to these defensible positions by “increasing competition amidst changing climatic conditions.” Cliff Palace was abandoned by 1300, and while debate remains as to the causes of this, some believe that a series of megadroughts interrupting food production systems is the main cause. Cliff Palace was rediscovered in 1888 by Richard Wetherill and Charlie Mason while out looking for stray cattle.3

Recent studies reveal that Cliff Palace contained 150 rooms and 23 kivas and had a population of approximately 100 people. Out of the nearly 600 cliff dwellings concentrated within the boundaries of the park, 75% contain only 1-5 rooms each, and many are single room storage units. If you visit Cliff Palace you will enter an exceptionally large dwelling which may have had special significance to the original occupants. It is thought that Cliff Palace was a social, administrative site with high ceremonial usage.4


  1. Today’s Photo is a photo that is almost always taken the day of the blog post.  In some instances, posts may be backdated if internet access is not available on the day of the photo or other reasons prevent posting Now and Then.
  2. Photo Favorite is a randomly selected older photograph from a batch of photos specifically “curated” for Now and Then.
  3. Cliff Palace – Wikipedia
  4. Cliff Palace – National Park Service

Note: Reference links were accessed on the date the blog post was published, unless otherwise stated.

Arkansas, cave, Colorado, hiking, history, landscape, Now and Then, parks, photo favorite, photography, today’s photo
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LED & Garden

Now and Then #13

Today’s photo: LED ribbon lighting on quilting frame crossbar, January 13, 2018 (Pentax K-3 II).

Today’s photo1: LED ribbon lighting on quilting frame crossbar, January 13, 2018 (Pentax K-3 II).

When I remodeled the quilting room, I installed tracks with LED lights to improve the lighting of the room, but a crossbar on Karen’s quilting frame left a shadow all the way across the quilt she would be working on.  One solution was clamp-on lights, clamped on to the crossbar.  This LED ribbon light eliminated the need for the clamp-on lights.  For this depth-of-field photo, the dimmer on the ribbon was on its lowest setting.

Photo Favorite: American painted lady butterfly on purple coneflower, West-Central Arkansas, June 25, 2011 (Pentax K-r)

Photo Favorite2: American painted lady butterfly on purple coneflower, West-Central Arkansas, June 25, 2011 (Pentax K-r)

The American painted lady or American lady (Vanessa virginiensis) is a butterfly found throughout North America. Vanessa virginiensis lives in flowery habitats, usually in mountains. The larvae feed on various Asteraceae, especially the cudweeds of genus Gnaphalium. All stages of the life cycle can be found throughout temperate North America as well as Madeira and the Canary Islands. Occasionally individuals can be found as far as southwest Europe.3

Echinacea purpurea (eastern purple coneflower, hedgehog coneflower, or purple coneflower) is a North American species of flowering plant in the sunflower family. It is native to eastern North America and present to some extent in the wild in much of the eastern, southeastern and midwestern United States as well as in the Canadian Province of Ontario. It is most common in the Ozarks and in the Mississippi/Ohio Valley.4


  1. Today’s Photo is a photo that is almost always taken the day of the blog post.  In some instances, posts may be backdated if internet access is not available on the day of the photo or other reasons prevent posting Now and Then.
  2. Photo Favorite is a randomly selected older photograph from a batch of photos specifically “curated” for Now and Then.
  3. American painted lady – Wikipedia
  4. Echinacea purpurea – Wikipedia

Note: Reference links were accessed on the date the blog post was published, unless otherwise stated.

Arkansas, around home, critters, garden, Now and Then, photo favorite, photography, plants, today’s photo
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22°F & Leaves

Now and Then #12

Today’s photo: Southern Ozarks in Arkansas on a winter day; 22°F with a breeze out of the north, January 12, 2018, 8:52 AM (Pentax K-3 II).

Today’s photo1: Southern Ozarks in Arkansas on a winter day; 22°F with a breeze out of the north, January 12, 2018, 8:52 AM (Pentax K-3 II).

The front came through during the night.  We went from 60°F yesterday afternoon to 22°F this morning.

The subfreezing weather this year have given the hills a definite wintery look this year.  We haven’t had any frozen precipitation yet this season.  Some years, it doesn’t get so cold and there is more green – other than the pines – on the hills.

Photo Favorite: Leaves on Lake Bailey, Petit Jean State Park, Arkansas November 17, 2007 (Pentax K10D)

Photo Favorite2: Leaves on Lake Bailey, Petit Jean State Park, Arkansas November 17, 2007 (Pentax K10D)

When this photo was taken, we were taking advantage of a few days of late autumn warm weather to do a little camping just before Thanksgiving, which was November 22 that year.

Petit Jean State Park’s Lake Bailey

Lake Bailey is a 170 acre impoundment behind a rock dam on Cedar Creek.  It is located on Petit Jean Mountain inside Arkansas’s first state park, established in 1923.  Petit Jean State Park’s early development, including the lake, as well as roads, buildings, bridges and trails still in use today, was done by the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) from 1933 to 1938.3


  1. Today’s Photo is a photo that is almost always taken the day of the blog post.  In some instances, posts may be backdated if internet access is not available on the day of the photo or other reasons prevent posting Now and Then.
  2. Photo Favorite is a randomly selected older photograph from a batch of photos specifically “curated” for Now and Then.
  3. Petit Jean State Park – The Encyclopedia of Arkansas History and Culture

Note: Reference links were accessed on the date the blog post was published, unless otherwise stated.

Arkansas, camping, history, lake, landscape, mountains, Now and Then, parks, photo favorite, photography, stream, today’s photo
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Rural & Tansyaster

Now and Then #11

Today’s photo: Decaying rural cabin, Pope County, Arkansas; 1/11/2018 8:42 AM (Pentax K-3 II).

Today’s photo1: Decaying rural cabin, Pope County, Arkansas;  1/11/2018 8:42 AM (Pentax K-3 II).

Another cloudy, dark day on the way to the gym.  I took a different route and got a few photos on the way.  It had warmed up overnight and was up to about 55°F. It was get to about 60° before a cold front is to take us down into the low 20s.

Photo Favorite: Colorado tansyaster wildflowers, Pikes Peak, Colorado, August 25, 2004 (Kodak EasyShare DX4530)

Photo Favorite2: Colorado tansyaster wildflowers, Pikes Peak, Colorado, August 25, 2004 (Kodak EasyShare DX4530)

Xanthisma coloradoense3

Xanthisma coloradoense (syn. Aster coloradoensis, Machaeranthera coloradoensis) is a species of flowering plant in the aster family known by the common name Colorado tansyaster. It is native to Colorado and Wyoming in the United States.

This cushion plant[2] is a perennial herb growing from a taproot and branching caudex. It grows up to 14 centimeters tall, with several to many thick, hairy stems. The hairy leaves are lance-shaped to spatula-shaped and the edges are lined with large, sharp teeth tipped with bristles. The inflorescence is a solitary flower head with narrow, white-tipped phyllaries. It contains pink or purple ray florets up to 1.5 centimeters long and many disc florets. The fruit may be nearly a centimeter long including its pappus.

This plant grows in mountains, often in an alpine climate. Habitat types include grassland, pinyon-juniper woodland, and alpine fellfield. It grows in open areas. There is often little vegetative cover and the terrain is rocky.


  1. Today’s Photo is a photo that is almost always taken the day of the blog post.  In some instances, posts may be backdated if internet access is not available on the day of the photo or other reasons prevent posting Now and Then.
  2. Photo Favorite is a randomly selected older photograph from a batch of photos specifically “curated” for Now and Then.
  3. Xanthisma coloradoense – Wikipedia

Note: Reference links were accessed on the date the blog post was published, unless otherwise stated.

Arkansas, Colorado, landscape, mountains, Now and Then, photo favorite, photography, today’s photo
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