Memorial Day 2023

Memorial Day is almost over. The sun is setting on a warm, dry sunny day. Often Memorial Day is windy and rainy, usually cool. This year is different. Due to a longer dry spell and the hay has been ready to cut. Tomorrow it will be baled. This is the earliest we have seen the haying season start. Usually it is after the 4th of July or if earlier, mid-June and still likely to get wet from rain.

The lawn furniture is out and comfortable. We placed the flower arrangements on the graves and will need to pick them up this week. Summer so far is starting early since we have a batch of strawberries that have been canned already though these are from California. I need to get some local Oregon berries. Yum!

Hay 2023

Yellowstone Colorful Geyser

We recently visited Yellowstone National Park. I had never been close and I was eager to see what was there. The park has many, many geysers and is actually a super volcano. The following is a description of a super volcano status of Yellowstone and a photo of one of the more colorful sights not far from Old Faithful Inn.

Hot spots and geysers represent just a fraction of the action beneath the surface at Yellowstone. The whole park is actually a supervolcano, although it's not supposed to erupt anytime soon. But, how do we know this? Despite the warnings, Yellowstone is quite safe: Its supervolcano is made up of two magma chambers. The first chamber contains no more than 15% molten. Meanwhile, the second chamber contains only two percent molten. Yellowstone optical middle geyser

Our Own Little Space Alien

We stayed overnight at a Holiday Inn Express on May 4th in Bismarck, ND. A very neat and busy state capital city. It was a tiring day and we were looking for dinner close by. The recommendation was to eat at the Space Aliens Restaurant. They had figures of space creatures and aliens on the walls plus people serving in costume at times. As we left I had to buy Ryan a the-died T-shirt for his 10th birthday at the checkout counter.

Here is a photo of our own little space alien, Ryan. We love and miss him plus Jesse and Nicolas.

Ryan space alien small

Bison Rising

We are back in Lebanon, OR as of around noon yesterday. We got a good night's sleep and it is a sunny, beautiful, and hot Saturday in mid-May. It is so pleasant. We are getting the outdoor furniture out to sit and enjoy, at least until it rains heavy.
I want to include a photo I took in North Dakota near Medora at the Theodore Roosevelt National Park. Driving through, it was a sunny, warm day with a bison grazing on new spring grass alongside the road. I was able to get some good photos with my new Zoom lens with the Nikon Z6. Let the spirit of the bison or American Buffalo rise in these United States.
Buffalo small size

Behind Lincoln's Head

We are headed out in the morning to drive 3 days to see David, Renee, Nicolas, Ryan, and Jesse in Aberdeen, SD. It is a long trip yet there is a lot to see along the way (and back). The last trip we went by and saw Mt. Rushmore! It was awesome and worth viewing. I guess you could say I cried for having a beautiful morning to visit.

I did come across this article about the vault and tunnel hidden behind Lincoln's head at the monument.
Here is some detail:
"The sculptor of Mount Rushmore, Danish American Gutzon Borglum, had the heads basically completed for all intents and purposes and, one year prior to his wrapping up the project in 1941, he somewhat clandestinely commenced work on what was to be a grand Hall of Records for the monument.
Within a nook behind Lincoln’s lithic likeness, the hall would delve deep into the living granite rock. It would feature 14-foot-high twin doors, beyond which there would be a chamber whose ceiling would soar 100 feet overhead. There would be glorious statues of famous Americans lining this hall, including American Indian leaders and important political figures. The majestic space would display, among other writings, the nation’s founding documents: the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, and the Bill of Rights…
Yet his work went unfinished. The war effort saw funds dry up, and Congress ordered him to just finish the heads and be done. Yet he persisted in his excavation of the hall until the House found out and promptly squelched his foray. He insisted its completion was necessary.
Though Borglum’s grand scheme survives on paper, only a rough passage saw fruition in carving. Boring diagonally up into the mountain, the markings of old tools bear testament to this effort—air-powered chisels and dynamite were used to bite away chunks of the dense granite while finer tools finished it. Jagged within, the tunnel evens out nearer the opening as workers meticulously “bumped” raw surfaces into walls as straight and smooth as finished concrete."
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