Monday, November 28, 2011

Nov 23 - Botanical Gardens

Andrea and I went to the San Antonio Botanical Gardens on a beautiful day and shot photos galore.  I just bought the Topaz Adjust plug in for Photoshop so had a great time Topaz Adjusting my photos.
This is actually three photos made into one.

The cabin is one of our favorite places in the Botanical Gardens

One of the many very cool effects in Topaz Adjust

More help from Topaz Adjust

One of the sculptures

Another sculpture and another Topaz Adjust effect

Even more help from Topaz Adjust.  Can you tell I like my new "toy"?

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Nov 18 - Downtown SA

One of our favorite things to do while in San Antonio is go walking downtown.  We usually get off the bus near the Alamo and walk to the library.  This time we stopped in front of the Alamo and had our photo taken with the Toulon, IL newspaper to send back to Galen's home town.  The paper likes to post photos of where their newspapers have traveled.

They were busy putting up the tree in front of the Alamo today.  The tree and the Riverwalk lights will be lit the day after Thanksgiving.  The Riverwalk got new lights this year - 1.75 million brilliant LED lights.  We'll get photos and post them.

We missed our bus by 29 seconds so went into the historic San Fernando Cathedral.  We hadn't been in there for a long time.  The altar is new, just dedicated this week.

Some of the heroes of the Alamo are buried inside San Fernando Cathedral.

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

Nov 7 - Central Market

One of the nicest things about being back in San Antonio is Central Market, an upscale grocery store set up like a European Market.  We bring all of our visitors here.  They roll their eyes when we tell them we are going to a grocery store, but we haven't had a single ho hum response from one person after we get them there.  These photos are for Mary Jane, whom we are trying to lure to San Antonio.


I am told Central Market has 50 pastry chefs.

More beautiful bakery goodies.

We didn't count how many kinds of mustards there were.  You can't count them either because they wouldn't all fit in the photo.

Central Market has 450 kinds of cheese.  This guy is making mozzarella cheese.

Not pictured is the deli, the soups, the sushi bar, the coffee shop, etc.  One large section of the store has tables and chairs and a microwave so you can go and spend the day and not get hungry.  The very coolest part of the store is produce - half a dozen long aisles of it.

Nov 1 - Corsicana, TX

We stopped for the night in Corsicana but instead of staying in the Walmart parking lot for the night, we got permission to stay in the parking lot of this beautiful historic Methodist Church.  

The church was close to downtown so we could walk to the famous Collin Street Bakery.  They made fabulous fruitcakes - not those kind with the icky fruit in them.  I couldn't resist having just one small slice of the pineapple and pecan and it was delicious!  Cost for a whole cake?  $34.00.  As you can see, they have all sorts of other tempting goodies.

After supper we took a walk to the courthouse.

The church secretary unlocked the sanctuary so I could take a few photos.  I'm afraid my photo can't begin to do this beautiful sanctuary justice.  I wish we'd able to attend a Sunday service, but we can't be taking up such a huge chunk of the parking lot on a Sunday morning.  Our next stop:  San Antonio.

Oct 28 - Autumn Leaves

Galen jammin' downtown.  He did a lot more of that this year than he has in the past and really enjoyed it.  They are on the porch of the music store.

The leaves weren't the prettiest we have ever seen in the Mountain View area, but they were pretty nice.  We left Mountain View on Oct 31 so may have missed them at their best.

Oct 29 - Beanfest!

Beanfest is a big deal in Mountain View, Arkansas.  The weather was cool this year, but sunny and bright and the sky was a beautiful clear blue, just like it always is.  This is what the  downtown street looked like on Friday afternoon, the day before the huge event.  See all the pots?  Many teams would get here early, early on Saturday morning to cook the beans in these pots that would be served for free at noon.

The big day.  Look at all the people lined up for beans!

Ozark RV park was well represented by a team this year.  Bill, on the right, used to be a fireman and cooked the meals for a firehouse.  I've been to Beanfest quite a few times but never ate the beans until this year.  I've tasted Bill's gumbo so knew his beans would be good and they were!  Becky, on the left, is serving up cornbread.

After we had beans, we headed over to watch a little bit of the outhouse races and get a few photos, something we haven't done in several years.

All the outhouse vehicles have to meet certain criteria to be included.

We really like this guitar shaped outhouse.

Mellon's Country store is a very cool place to visit if you are in Mountain View.  Don Mellon, pictured, is the sponsor of this outhouse racer.  Don is a member of the Outside the Box band that Galen is part of, and does an excellent job of playing a fiddle made from a gourd.

The outhouses are pushed uphill but a couple of strong young guys in heats of two.  Uphill is a lot safer for the audience than downhill.

Galen played music downtown and on the main stage at the Ozark Folk Center with the leader of Ozark Traditions, fiddle player, and a walking encyclopedia of the traditional music of this area.

Oct 22 - Paws for the Cause

Paws for the Cause is an annual fund raiser for the Humane Society in Mountain View, AR.  In addition to the very popular silent auction, the group sells donuts and this year Galen and I helped with the donut sales.  We didn't eat any of them.  Just sold them.  A truck was sent to pick up the donuts in Little Rock the night before the big event and the truck was stopped by the police - not because the police wanted a donut but because 15 boxes got loose and fell out of the truck.  An amazing number of people who ordered and paid for donuts didn't pick them up and all those boxes were re-sold so things turned out okay.

The best thing about going to Paws for the Cause is seeing all the dogs dressed up for the parade.

Hot dog!

Music, of course, is part of the event.  Emily Phillips, who is the granddaughter of one of our friends and made her first recording on our CD, was one of the performers.  She is an excellent musician!

Diane and Gator, friends from the RV park came over.   Galen's nickname is also Gator so we have fun with that.