Tuesday, January 18, 2011

End of an Era

I sold the Diesel today. This was the first and probably the last NEW vehicle that I have ever bought for myself. I bought this truck when Clay was 2 months old and now he is 13. It has been a great truck. It still gets about 18 mpg and everything still works. It had 7 miles on the odometer when I bought it. I took this picture below when I got out of it the last time. I am going to miss that ol' truck.

Genetics Are Passed Down

If you have ever seen any pictures of my dad when he was in his late teens or early twenties you would see how much Clay looks like him. He wore horn-rimmed glasses like these.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Clay's week didn't end as good as it started.

Even though Clay had a great weekend, things went south just before halftime of his game Tuesday. He was playing both offense and defense. While on defense a player with the ball tried to run outside and Clay tackled him. Clay also landed directly on his left shoulder and his collarbone broke. Here is a nice picture taken in the emergengy room Tuesday night. Wednesday he went to the Orthopedic doctor and Friday had surgery.

Here is the X-ray of his collarbone showing the break. To fix the bone the doctor made an incision, put the bone in a clamp, spread the bone back apart until they fit back in place then put a plate with six screws in it to hold it.

Here is the finished product with the bone straightened back out in place. It was 15 staples to close the incision. He says it it numb in the area around the incision. Two days after the surgery he is feeling much better with very little pain. Hopefully I can get an X-ray picture of the plate and screws on his collarbone.

Here it is.

Saturday, October 9, 2010

The New Hunting Season

This year Clay and I have gotten in a new lease in Union Parish. Clay killed this 7 pt this morning on the youth weekend. I put him on the stand this morning about 5:30. We scared 4 deer out when we went in. About 7:30 two does came in and left. About 15 minutes later I heard a shot and then a yell. He made a great shot and this is his first "racked"buck. He was more excited than the picture shows. I was sitting on a stand nearby and saw about a dozen turkeys. He killed it with my dad's 30-06. That rifle has killed quite a few bucks. This makes the 3rd generation that has killed bucks with this gun.
One thing about the new lease is we have more than just deer. Here is one of the many bear that inhabit the area. Notice the pole in the background. That is so I can hang the barrel feeder full of corn so he can't get at it. This was my rice bran feeder he was trying to tear up. This picture was taken at 5:12 and I got the card from this camera before 6:oo so I just missed him.
This is the Big Daddy Camphouse. We added the porch and bunkroom to the camp. You can not imagine how hard it is to build a room that is not square in any way. It is especially difficult to hang paneling and no sheet fits correctly. Other than that it is very well built and tight.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Family Vacation 2010

This year we decided to go to Mt. Rushmore in South Dakota. We went from Louisiana through Arkansas, Missouri, Kansas, Iowa, South Dakota, Wyoming, Montana and Nebraska. It is such a long way up there we decided to break it up and see things along the way. The first part of out trip was in Kansas City. We stayed with Anna and Nate. We had such a great time with them. We went to T-Rex cafe and Oklahoma Joe's BBQ (mmmm). But our favorite meal was one we did at their house. Check out these steaks! Nate is quite handy with the grill.

We went to the Kansas City Zoo with Anna. She reminded us of the Chapman Flamingo pose. Clay and I have a pose of our own..we call it the Giraffe Tongue.

We went to see the Royals play the Houston Astros. They won and we even got on the big screen. We were too busy doing YMCA to take a picture of it though.

Nate and Anna enjoying the Game.

Clare got her photo with Slugger the Royals mascot.

We also went to the Federal Reserve Bank in Kansas City where we saw lots of money. They had 40 Million Dollars encased in a wall. When it's all 100's a million dollars will fit in a suitcase. We also got to take home a bag of shredded money. Anna says "They probably think it funny that we take out their trash." Nathan and Anna were so much fun to hang out with. When we left to continue our journey, Shawn said we have had a good time the we haven't even really got to our vacation yet.

Our next stop was in Omaha, Nebraska. We went to the Henry Doorly Zoo. It is right next to Rosenblatt Stadium--Home of the College World Series. They were about to start the next week. This is the last year the CWS will be played in Rosenblatt because it will be torn down and a new park will be downtown. The Henry Doorly Zoo is a great zoo. By the way, we like zoos--this is our second this trip.

Clay was a great howler monkey. Note the monkey with the same face in the background. They were answering each other.
The Omaha Zoo had great exhibits. Clay and Clare pose with a lioness who didn't seem to mind. One of our favorite exhibits was the Butterfly House. Some of the butterflys didn't even seem real when they flew so effortlessly.

Someone isn't smiling!

We left Omaha later that afternoon and headed to our hotel in Sioux Falls, South Dakota.

Sioux Falls is in the eastern portion of South Dakota. We headed across the state to the western portion where we were going to spend about 4 more days in Rapid City. There is a lot of things like this: The World's Largest Bulls Head, to see along the way. The wind was blowing 50+ mile per hour in our face the whole way. We had been getting 20-21 mpg the trip so far-- on this day we got 10.6. I could hardly stand straight when I filled up the truck.

The Corn Palace in Mitchell, South Dakota is a must see. They have been decorating this building with corn and grain since 1892. They are decorating it even now. Each year the theme changes.

You can even get a corn head. We just modeled these. They were a little pricey at $22 to be worn only on special occasions.

Another one of those strange things you see along the way.

Before we got to Rapid City, we stopped and spent several hours at the Badlands National Park. This was a strange and beautiful landscape.

We saw deer, antelope, lots of prarie dogs and lots of buffalo. Here is a large bull from a distance. The terrain was grassy in some places and dry clay with no vegetation in others. You could tell it would get very slick when it got wet.

The next day we started out to go to Mount Rushmore. It was neat to see how they carved the faces on the granite mountain. They started in 1927 and ended in 1941. We also found out that they actually carved Jefferson's head on the left side of Washington and removed it an carved him where he is today.

The Crazy Horse Memorial is about 20 miles away from Mt. Rushmore. It was began in 1948 and is still unfinished today. It is much larger and has been built by private money. When it is finished it will be the largest sculpture in the world. Crazy Horse's head is 87 feet tall compared to the President's heads on Mount Rushmore at 60 Feet. The completed Crazy Horse sculpture will include his flowing hair and his horse. You can see the horses ear and eye drawn on the mountain.

One of the most beautiful places we went to was Custer State Park. From the lookout on edge of the Black Hills, you can see the rolling hills you think South Dakota looks like and in the distance you can see the Badlands about 70 miles away.

The Black Hill in Custer State Park are some of the most rugged and beautiful in the state.

Custer State Park has plenty of wildlife.

The weather was nice the whole time we were gone. The temperatures back home were in the 100's and the highest we saw our temperature gauge in the truck was 78. This day it was in the low 60's.

The view coming out of the tunnel at the needles. We drove through several tunnels they were one car wide.

This is beautiful Sylvan Lake in Custer SP. It was also featured in National Treasure 2. It is not located behind Mount Rushmore though.

This is a typical view of the Black Hills. This was taken after we left Custer State Park and is still part of the Black Hills National Forest.

The next day we went to Wyoming to see Devil's Tower National Monument. You may have seen it from Close Encounters of the Third Kind. It is a monolith from an old volcano.

Can you find the climbers on the side? Look just to left of center.

The pictures don't show how large this is. If you found the climbers you have an idea. This rock pile is at the base of this thing. It is quite large before you even get to the monolith. Every picture we took was pointed upward.

The sun came out while we were there to give us a beautiful picture.

During the trip, Clay has been experimenting with his "soul patch". I think the one on the right looks more natural.

After Devil's Tower we drove from Wyoming up to Montana and then back into South Dakota. We stopped in Belle Fourche. This is known as the Geographic Center of the United States.

The next day we drove down to Hot Springs, South Dakota to The Mammoth Site. It is actually an active dig where several mammoths have been unearthed. There was once a steep sided sinkhole where several animal became trapped. Fifty Five mammoths have been unearthed so far along with some other animals. After we went through the museum, we returned to Rapid City and watched Toy Story 3 at the movies.

We finally left South Dakota headed back home. We traveled south through Nebraska. One of the first stops we made was at Carhenge near Alliance. It is a replica of Stonehenge in England only made of cars painted gray.

Clare was enjoying the local flora at Carhenge. Her favorite part of vacation was swimming in the hotel pool.

This is Chimney Rock National Historic Site. You may recognize it from the back of the Nebraska Quarter. It is a famous geological rock formation marking the way for settlers in the 19th century. It served as a landmark along the Oregon Trail, Mormon Trail and the California Trail guiding settlers to their westward destination

We spent the night in North Platte, Nebraska, home to Bailey Yard. The largest railroad classification yard in the world. More trains come through North Platte than anywhere in the world.
It is over 8 miles long and 2 miles wide. It handles over 10,000 railroad cars daily.

The next day we stopped in Minden, NE at Harold Warp's Pioneer Village. Not only does it show how the pioneers lived but it also has a museum covering 20 acres that has lots of cars, tractors, a train and airplanes and a merry-go-round. It has lots of very unique things that show how America has developed over the years. This game was played by early settlers. Clare got it in 3 tries.

We got back to the Goodnight's in KC. We decided to rest a day before returning to Louisiana. We all went fishing at the pond and caught a few bass. Clare was quite the fisherman. This is the first time to throw a spinning reel and she was casting as far as Clay. We all got a good dose of redbugs also.

We traveled over 3700 miles through 9 states in 13 days. We saw a lot of interesting things and we saw a lot of nothing--especially in Nebraska. We played the license plate game and saw all but Hawaii, New Hampshire, Vermont and Rhode Island. We also counted 4 of the 6 Canadian Provinces plates.