Wednesday, September 29, 2010

lunch break photos

Got these photos when Jubilee and I took a walk during lunch.  (The picture above is my "desk".)

Sunday, September 26, 2010


Since coming to Pennsylvania, we have been hearing about Ohiopyle.  The place to go.  Ohiopyle is a town and state park that is in the Laurel Mountains southeast of Pittsburgh.  It is about a 2 hour drive from Cranberry TWP.  There is a lot of stuff down there.  Fallingwater, the Frank Lloyd Wright house with a waterfall running through it, river rafting, skiing, lots of hiking trails.  Today we decided to check it out.

We must have gotten started on a wrong foot.  First, there was a traffic jam going through Pittsburgh.  And we never should have gone through Pittsburgh anyway, since there is a more direct route taking the PA turnpike from Cranberry.  Why do we always think that our GPS gadget knows best?  But, anyway.

This is Pittsburgh from a traffic jam ...
Then we missed our turnoff from the turnpike.  John says it was my fault because I was talking and he was so absorbed in what I was saying.  Yeah, right.  Anyway, we had to go about 50 miles out of our way to get back on track.  We did see some beautiful parts of the Laurel Highlands, and finally made it to Ohiopyle.
A really cute little town, right on the Youghiogheny River.  Lots of waterfalls, biking and hiking trails, fishing, you name it.  We hiked down a rocky trail to the falls.   Being out on the rocks made me nervous.  I'm not sure if I was afraid Jubilee was going to fall over or if I was afraid that I was!
We had lunch at the Firefly Grille in Ohiopyle and then headed over the Kentuck Knob.
The reason why I am so interested in Kentuck Knob, is not only because it is a Frank Lloyd Wright house, but also because it was built by Mr. and Mrs. I. N. (Isaac Newton) Hagan, and I am a Hagan, and from Kentucky, no less!  And Mr. I. N. Hagan made his fortune selling Hagan's Ice Cream.  Well, my father, Tucker (Edwin) Hagan, was making his fortune in KY selling his own Hagan's Ice Cream about the same time as Mr. I. N. Hagan was doing so in PA.  Anyway ...
We drove over to Kentuck Knob and got there about 3:20.  Unfortunately, since a private tour had been scheduled, the last public tour was at 3PM.  So we couldn't even get a ticket to tour (or see) the house.  We ignored a sign that said "no one without a ticket can go here" and walked down a path to the sculpture meadow.
It was very quiet, no one else was around, and we saw some weird stuff (including a gaggle of wild turkeys).

This is the "red army" ...
And this is part of the Berlin wall ...
These are just some birdhouses, I guess.
We came back to the gift shop and I had some Hagan's Ice Cream.
It wasn't as good as my Dad's Hagan's Ice Cream.

Anyway, we're going to have to come back to Ohiopyle.  I have a Palm Beach connection that should get us into Fallingwater for free, and we have to see the Hagan house at Kentuck Knob.

another yellow tree

These yellow trees are on the embankment behind the shopping center where our grocery store is.

A Ukrainian Festival

Sometimes following a whim can lead to interesting things.  In this case it was a sign on the side of the road that read: Ukrainian Art Festival, 6th Street, Ambridge PA.  We had not idea where Ambridge was, so we put it into the GPS and found out it was 12 miles away. 

It turns out that Ambridge is an old river town - on the Ohio River south of Freedom.  The Ukrainian Art Festival was hosted by SS Peter and Paul Ukrainian Catholic Church.  The other Church in town was Byzantine.

When we were in Prague I remember telling a shopkeeper that I didn’t even know where the Ukraine was.  I’m still not real sure.  But I am charmed by the people, their art, and especially their music. 

Thursday, September 23, 2010

looking for shadows

I took an early walk with Jubilee this morning, looking for shadows for my contemplative photograph course.  Didn't have much luck with getting shadow photos, but it was lovely to be out.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

The Heinz History Museum

The Heinz History Center in downtown Pittsburgh is a cool place.  Housed in an old ice warehouse, there are 7 floors of open wooden beamed ceilings and brick walls.  Everything under the sun about Pittsburgh is in there. 

I was a little worried that it was going to be all about sports since there are big banners touting the The Sports Museum.  But the sports stuff is mostly on part of the 2nd floor; the rest of the floors are filled with history and memorabilia related to the city of Pittsburgh and the Western Pennsylvania area.

There is a lot to look at and absorb.  Much of the battling of the French and Indian wars - which I found out was truly a “world war” - took place around here.
 (John wants some boots like this for when he rides his motorcycle)

There are gorgeous wrought iron, aluminum, and glasswork that were made in factories during Pittsburgh’s early years.
The inventiveness of Mr. Westinghouse.
 (The Battle of the Century Contest at the 1939 World's Fair.  The automatic dishwasher wins.)

And, of course, the story of Mr. Heinz and his endeavor to infiltrate the world with his 57 (and more) food products.  The beginning of the processing and packaging of food, for better or worse.  It sure made him a rich man.

There were not many people there on the day that John and I visited.  The building itself is a pleasure to wander around in - very roomy and a little dark.  The huge collection of memorabilia reminded of stuff that we used to have in our basement in KY.  Stuff from not so long ago, but already looking very dated and old fashioned. 

I actually remember using a high chair like this.
And John had a bicycle like this (that he hated because it was so heavy).  I think his Mom got it at a yard sale.

the yellow tree

Here's a better photo of the yellow tree that I like looking at.  It's right by a favorite route that Jubilee likes to take, so we pass it a couple of times a day (at least).

Monday, September 20, 2010

Autumn Leaf Update

I took these photos tonight while taking Jubilee for a walk around the apartment complex.  Autumn is happening so much sooner here than it did when we were in Missouri two years ago.  Summer lasted well into October there. 

There is a lot of yellow around.  I have been admiring this all yellow tree for awhile.  I think the lighting was not right, tonight, though, and I should take it again when the sun is up.

And then there is this red tree ...

These next photos show the overall way that the color is changing the landscape.