Thursday, July 24, 2014

Charleston

Just back from a great week in Charleston SC.

I spent my first morning in Charleston wandering through the Battery. The architecture, wrought iron work, and monuments were quite facinating.

Stormy weather kept me inside for much of the afternoon.

Charleston Day 1

The Opening Ceremonies of the 119th Annual Reunion of the Sons of Confederate Veterans was inspiring.

119th Annual Reunion SCV - Opening Day

On to Charleston for a very relaxing and informative carriage ride  along the Battery. Visited Charleston City Market; UDC Confederate Museum; St. Phillips Church (an attempt to see Calhoun's gravesite).

Charleston Day 2


Off to Fort Sumter aboard the Spirit of the Low Country. Passing by the Battery - the homes are lovely when viewed from the water.

Charleston Day 3

Closing events at the SCV Reunion; Magnolia Cemetery to pay respects to the crew of the HL Hunley.

Charleston Day 4

Back to Magnolia Cemetery for more photos - the monuments there deserved a second trip. On to Sullivan Island see the Sullivan Island Lighthouse, as an added bonus I was able to see the Morris Island Lighthouse from the beach; then to Fort Moultrie. It was amazing to how close Ft. Sumter was from the gun battery there.
Charleston Day 5

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Israel 2012


I had a great conversation today that brought up my trip to Israel in 2012, it was such a great trip that I wanted to share the blog post from the trip again.

Enjoy!!


February 25, 2012

"It was a whirlwind trip. We hit the ground running! Visiting, Tel Aviv, Caesarea, Haifa, Zefat, Qumran, En Gedi, Masada, City of David and the Old City of Jerusalem in just four days. My last day in Jerusalem was spent at the DVI Clinic during the morning; followed by additional sightseeing in the afternoon at the Bird Observatory, the Israel Museum and topping off the evening before heading to the airport a trip to the Farmer's Market.

In preparation for the trip, I had read Jerusalem: The Biography, by Simon Sebag Montefiore which was a wonderful history of the city. Which I was grateful for once there and visiting the city. We even watched a number of archeological lectures on Jerusalem and the area as well prior to the trip. Again it was the putting together of the pieces and parts of what had been learned during Sunday School with the history of the place and throwing in current events that caused me to appreciate so much the reality of the place and marvel at it's complexity. There are so many layers, historic, religious, political, and archeological one upon the other. It gives a whole new understanding to Biblical history and the country as a whole.

Standing in so many of the places where the events of Biblical history have taken place; and touring the country put into perspective both the events of the Bible and today's current events. That so much has taken place in such a small area it is hard to fathom. The experience truly does change you.

Visiting the DVI Clinic and meeting the staff, volunteer dentists, and the patients was a special time. There is dedication of the staff and dentists to the clinic can be felt from the time you enter the door. The patients come from all backgrounds and there is a feeling of unity. If the world could operate in the same way the way or world would be a much better place.

My "job" was to photograph the country, people, food, and clinic for the American Friends of DVI. Please be sure to check out their website. Pass along this opportunity to volunteer to your dentist or contribute to the work that they are doing. Changing lives one child at a time and in their own way forging peace in the Middle East."

Trip photos, subject to change and removal. Enjoy!

Sunday, June 22, 2014

Battle of Trevilian Station


This Saturday, I escorted our out of town guest from France to the re-enactment in Louisa of the Battle of Trevilian Station. This was my very first re-enactment (our guests as well).

We had a delightful time capturing the sights and sounds of both the cavalry and infantry battles. In addition to the battles the encampments of the troops were quite interesting.


Saturday, May 31, 2014

2nd I-95 Memorial Battle Flag

The Virginia Flaggers are pleased to announce the raising of the 2nd I-95 Memorial Battle Flag in the Commonwealth. A 20’ x 30’ Army of Tennessee version of theConfederate Battle Flag was raised this morning on an 82’ pole in Stafford County, just north of Fredericksburg, in a small, private ceremony that included a Confederate Color Guard, Rifle Salute, Invocations, and historical presentations.
The flag will fly in honor of all Confederate soldiers, and specifically to remember the nearly 246,000 Confederate soldiers who fought in separate battles in the vicinity of Fredericksburg (1862), Chancellorsville (1863), Spotsylvania (1864) and the Wilderness (1864).
The preservation of liberty and freedom guaranteed by our forefathers and embodied in the US Constitution of 1788, motivated these men to leave their loved ones and take up arms, and driven by duty and honor, they answered the call to defend their State from invasion. Their noble attributes are the underpinning of our republican society and represent the foundation on which this nation was built. These citizen-soldiers of all races, creeds, and faiths, who fought for the Confederacy, personified the best qualities of America.
As the sons and daughters of these gallant men, The Virginia Flaggers, along with the numerous benefactors and supporters of this flag, believe that it is our "...duty to see that the true history of the South is presented to future generations." (Lieutenant General Stephen D. Lee, CSA)
Since the first flag was erected in Chester in September, 2013, we have been contacted by landowners all across Virginia and in neighboring states, eager to offer their property for lease, and currently have several other projects in various stages of development. Anyone with information about land that may be available for lease for a memorial flag site, or who would like to contribute to the ongoing funding of these projects, please contact us at info@vaflaggers.com, or by mail: Va Flaggers, P.O. Box 547, Sandston VA 23150. Donations accepted through PayPal:http://www.vaflaggers.com/i95flagdonate.html

Friday, March 28, 2014

Who?

I saw a picture just the other day of a couple of youngster in a martial arts class. I'm told that one of them is my grandson. Which one I haven't a clue.

It is a sad shame when children, grow up, do stupid things and then proceed to become even dumber adults. From what I hear (which is little of nothing) the grandchildren are growing up rapidly. Yet I doubt that I would recognize either one if I passed them in the store. I'm actually beginning to wonder if I would recognize my own daughter as well, since she has not had the courtesy to call, write, or speak to me in years.

It is not so much her loss that I worry about, but she is denying her children the opportunity to have a relationships with their family.

Friday, February 7, 2014

Sunday, February 2, 2014

Be Strong and of A Good Courage

Be Strong and of A Good Courage


Step back in time with the Fletcher boys as they leave their home and family to join in the battle to remove the Yankee invaders from Virginia. Learn about their family and values. Travel with them as they move from the infantry to a calvary unit. 

The fearsomely independent freedom loving people of the south and their desire to just be left alone to pursue their lives. 

Will Osborne weaves their story and allows you to be there with them and share their joys and sorrows. It is a compelling tale of those that fought, died and suffered during the War of Northern Aggression. 

This book would be a fine addition to any library. You can purchase your copy directly from the author, for $15.00 + $5.00 shipping & handling through PayPal at celticwill1@Hotmail.com.

Friday, January 31, 2014

An Interesting Update

Walter's prediction from back in October has come to pass. See column 3 of today's Drudge Report - "Gynecologist to treat more men..." Be sure to read his original musings.



Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Snow Day Here in Richmond

Enough of the fluffy white stuff has fallen along with the temperatures to shutdown the schools and a large number of business.

We've got a 'dry' snow here which isn't very good for making snowmen or snowballs, so I guess we will have to wait for the next one (hopefully next year) for any snowmen to appear.

Everyone stay safe out there and stay warm!

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Lexington!

Having started the new year off sick, I spent most of my time focused on getting well in order to attend the festivities in Lexington, VA for Lee-Jackson Day. I was successful in getting better and am thrilled to have made it!

Friday morning began with a gathering at Stonewall Jackson Cemetery and then off to the streets of Lexington. Flagging activities for the afternoon wrapped up with a group photo and singing Dixie at the Mayor's house.




Saturday's event's kicked off at the memorial service at Stonewall Jackson Cemetery. Followed by a parade down Main Street in Lexington to the Lee Chapel. The Virginia Flaggers marched as the third unit in the parade. They numbers approximately 75, although some of their members were also participating in other units. It was a beautiful sight as all of those Confederate flags were carried along the parade route.




Following a service at the Lee Chapel, the Virginia Flaggers moved to the parade grounds at VMI, where a 22' x 30' Confederate Battle Flag was unfurled and Dixie was sung. Much to the delight of all  many new voices were added as many of the Keydets joined in. The reverbrating Rebel Yell at the end of the song was enough to give you chills.

A very chilly afternoon of flagging followed lunch. Those that were on Main Street had come from far and wide. Tennessee, Florida, Mississippi, North Carolina and from all around Virginia. 

It was a spectacular weekend!

Christmas Flashback



As I uploaded my previous blog post today, Google surprised me with this little enhancement.

Catching Up 2013

I have been so terribly neglectful of my blog. That is not to say I haven't been busy, I just have been so busy posting and sharing all kinds of things on Facebook that I had not updated this site. That being said, I guess a review of whats been going on is order to bring things up to date.

2013
September started off with a quick trip to Lake Mattamuskeet, NC for the Labor Day weekend. A wonderfully leisurely way to end the summer.

The rest of the month I was very busy working with the Virginia Flaggers. I have been their Official Photographer for some time now and they are a very busy group. Flagging twice weekly at the VMFA and their unfurling of the I-95 Battle Flag at the end of September. My weekends were hopping. 

The BIGGEST event of the month was the Unveiling of the I-95 Battle Flag that was to raised at the end of the month. The Virginia Flaggers unveiled the Battle Flag on the steps of the Virginia State Capital - even taking time to singing Dixie, which reverberated off the buildings surrounding the Capital building.


Not only was I shooting photos, I was busy at work doing a few creative projects with them. I had a little fun with the LOVE sign that was in from of the VMFA, making a couple of changes that were fitting for the weekend. 


I was honored to have several of my photos used in a new brochure for the Henricus Historical Park

The month really was jammed packed and loaded with fun with the Virginia Flaggers. There are tons of photos over on Judy Smith Photography on Facebook of the month's activities.

October

I did manage to make another road trip down to the Outer Banks for some relaxation and to shoot a few photos.


I was still keeping busy with the Virginia Flaggers, but things slightly slowed down for me in October. But as you know when one things slows down another picks up.

We had a bit of fun at the office on Halloween - we all dressed up and had fun posing for pictures with some of the patients.

November

I think by this time, just about everyone that knows me, knows that Bounce gets a trip to Hardee's just about every Sunday morning for his treat of the week. A sausage biscuit and gravy. Here is a shot of him sitting in the backseat of the car waiting for "his turn" at the drive-thru window. He just loves his sausage biscuit & gravy.

I hitched a ride with Barry to Raleigh to attend the Flag Re-Dedication Ceremony at the North Carolina Museum of History. We finished up the day by joining a fellow flagger in flagging  the NC State Capital. It is amazing the people you meet - we were joined at different times - by a groups from Italy and China! International Flagging!

Raleigh Road Trip & Flagging Photos

Meanwhile our the Virginia Flaggers enjoyed some beautiful weather, followed immediately by frosty conditions. While shooting the photo to the left - I was "fussed" at for not being dressed warmly enough to suit everyone. (I did go and purchase a heavier winter coat a few days later, but by the time that I had made the purchase the temperatures had risen to comfortable levels).

Through all the wacky weather the Virginia Flaggers maintained a presence at the VMFA and the Museum of the Confederacy in addition to attending Veteran's Day Memorial Services.

By the end of November I was beginning to get a good feel of the road driving back and forth to North Carolina. It was nice to watch the changes in the country side over the weeks.

North Carolina 1 &  North Carolina 2

I had a great Thanksgiving at Mom & Dad's house. It was one of our better Thanksgiving's. I do believe that everyone had a great time.

December

I feel like I was going somewhere just about every weekend. I was all prepared to shoot the Mechanicsville Christmas Parade the first weekend in December only to have the event called due to rain (there was no rain date). So in lieu of doing that I joined several others for a "quick" Flagger Road Trip to Sharpsburg, MD to assist in setting up luminaries on the battle field.

Now talk about a COLD day. I was SO GLAD that I had that heavy winter coat. It would have been brutal without it.

Driving through the battlefield at night and realizing that each of the luminaries represented a fallen soldier truly gives an idea of how terrible the losses were there.

The trip to Sharpsburg had started very early in the morning and we did not return back home until nearly 10:30 p.m., but my day wasn't over. It was time for me to head off to a Christmas party! Needless to say I didn't arrive until nearly 11pm, but it was a great. I ended up to the end of the get together. Finally falling into bed after 2 am!!

The Christmas season hit full force with parties and outings. The office had our annual get together at Lewis Ginter Botanical Gardens. After a lovely dinner we wandered throughout the garden enjoying the illuminated displays.

Just a week later the Virginia Flaggers gathered at the house for a Christmas party, and it was a FULL HOUSE!! There were 30 people there. It was a terrific event. Can't wait until the next one.

The weekend before Christmas was very eventful. Saturday at the VMFA with the Virginia Flaggers. The weather was unbelievable. You would have thought that it was early September or late May. Awesome weather and the flags were brilliant in the bright sunlight.


The Richmond Pop's Band performed their Christmas Concert on the night of the 23rd with the Richmond Choral Society. This is one event that I've made it to for about the last five years. The performance was excellent as always.

I don't know how I managed to do it but I didn't take a single photo of our family's Christmas Eve get together. Thank goodness Mom did. Even though it is sort of goofy it is really great.


I had a really special Christmas Day, Barry came over and cooked for me. It was absolutely delicious and spectacular to watch!

The flames really did wrap up over top of the range hood, no worries though the cabinets were fine, the food was EXCELLENT! and there was a fire extinguisher nearby had it been needed.

I rung out the year curled up sick on the sofa, definitely looking forward to a new year full of new adventures.