I’ve been working on a new theme for the hubcrate.com site, and went looking for some sample content. The second directory that I hit had a lot of great pictures taken back in 2009. I don’t know who was taking pictures (usually it’s me), but it appears to be someone who was in cahoots with Daelynn. I suspect Danaya or Rett neither of whom appeared in the pictures.
Dad and Mom’s Anniversary Trip
Our (Ben & Lori’s) 28th anniversary was on May 14th, the first Saturday that Layne, Elissa and Brody were visiting with us. To celebrate, Lori and I abandoned the kids on Sunday afternoon and headed off to the Corpus Christi area (southern Texas coast) for a couple of days. We stayed in a nearby town called Rockport at a very secluded bed and breakfast.
The bed and breakfast that we stayed at was an apartment built into the back of a garage, with a small deck facing a wilderness scrub area. This picture was taken out of the kitchen window.
There was a major storm which went through the area early on Monday morning, which led to a lot of water on roadways. We drove down to the beach and spent some time at Mustang Island State Park. The main parking lot was under water so we had to park further back and it was quite a hike to the beach.
After the beach we hit a local restaurant, “Ginger Cafe”, for our meal out. The food was primarily Greek, I believe (spoken like the faux-culinarilist that I am). I had real Ginger-Ale (which they made themselves). It tasted like Ginger Ale and had some chunks of ginger in it.
Our bed and breakfast was really close to Goose Mountain State Park (oops – there aren’t any mountains in Texas, this was actually “Goose Lake State Park”, and in a quick tour around the park, we encountered signs for “the Big Tree”. Of course, such signs obviously require a detour to see the attraction in question.
Around the Big Tree in question was a sturdy wooden fence to dissuade unruly tourists from attempting to climb it. We walked around it (staying outside the fence) and took pictures instead.
At this point, I quit taking smaller and smaller pictures, but maybe should have taken a closer one of the little stick thing on the mushroom so that I could have captioned it “Stick on a mushroom on the fence around the Big Tree”. Those of you not familiar with obnoxious kids songs like “There’s a hole in the bottom of the sea” that go on ad-infinitum can be thankful. Although I do have fond memories of singing loudly “I had a Rooster” to baby Layne during the 1991 road trip to Phoenix, AX – on the stretch of road to Yuba, Arizona. I’ll bet he has fond memories of that as well.
Our next stop of the day (for which I had pictures) was our trip to Port Aransas. This road had been blocked by high water the day before, but the water was down somewhat so we forged ahead.
In Texas, ferries are part of the Texas Transporation System, so are free of charge for motorists. There was a short ferry ride (half a mile) or less to get to Port Aransis. However, the wait for the ferry, loading and unloading stretched this to close to an hour in each direction.
After getting off the ferry, we went to one of the public docks (probably wrong word) to see if we could see any dolphins in the channel. We saw the odd dolphin fin off in the distance, but it must have been a dolphin stat holiday or something. However, when we went to leave the dock/lookout/place, this rather large pelican was blocking our way, sort of like a troll requiring payment for going over his bridge. (By the way, while I usually do these posts on my iPhone, I’m finishing this one out on the computer – where it is possible to be way more wordy).
One of the fishermen on the wharf/dock/jetty/thing gave us one of their bait fish to appease the
troll pelican. Here is Lori feeding the pelican.
And just in case you couldn’t see really well, here is a zoomed-in version showing the tail in Lori’s hand. This wasn’t a slow-motion feeding either – the pelly lunged for it fairly quickly, but managed not to nip Lori”s fingers at all.
Our other major stop in Port Aransas was the long (not sure how long but it felt like a mile on the way out, and about 3 miles on the way back in the hear).
Sections of it were a stable cement surface, sections were a stable cement surface covered by a very slippery algae, and other sections were big granite blocks necessitating a certain amount of hopping.
After the jetty hike, it was time to start heading home. We went for another ferry ride, then made the trek home.
April 16th, the week in pictures
I had to return my Pomegranate Orchard Otharized Professional badge, as the pictures that I posted last week labeled ‘baby pomegranate’ actually turned out to be the pomegranate bud and flower as shown by the following two pictures. I guess that the fruit comes after the pollination process.
Although I had captioned a picture last week about painting the roses (referring of course to the Alice in Wonderland movie), it was all in jest. However, one (and only one) of the roses actually is mostly red and part pink, looking indeed like it had been partially painted.
Davison made a dessert this week called a ‘pavlova’. It consisted of a meringue crust, whipped cream and sliced fresh fruit. It was delicious and allowed Davison and Brock to stay up past their bedtime as it took an extra long time to cook.
For the past 1.5 years as part of a work-sanctioned give-back-to-the-community program, I have been mentoring a middle school student. This consists of meeting once a week during a lunch hour for 30 minutes.
and last and least…
Lori and Ben pictures
Lori always has this deep down feeling that one of the nefarious purposes of photography is to make her look bad (in other words that she is aphotogenic). I think she looks amazing in these pictures taken recently during our trip to Space Center Houston, so they are well worth posting. I’ve also posted one of these into the Hubcrate/About page. I think Daelynn was the photographer in this case, so kudos to her!
One of my favorite song stanzas is from Casting Crowns song “Angel”:
After all the changing seasons
Have turned to years
The crowns are gone
And the suns have faded
I’d still be here
When thanking heaven
For my angel
Ben’s work fieldtrip – or “off to see a seismic shoot”
Ben’s note: This has been reposted from my blog at work, so it might not make loads of sense, but gives an idea of the industry that I work in.
Ferguson Shoot field trip, 30-July-2014
This is a quick blog entry about the visit of the “Yellow team” to the Ferguson survey shoot on 30-July-2014. Our driver, tour guide and fount of all seismic-related wisdom was Doug Reagle, who did an excellent job of showing and explaining.
Here’s 4 of the 8 team members
Inside the data shed, Dawson Geophysical demonstrated how they managed data coming off the GSRs, how data copies were handled and what measures were in place to ensure data collection was happening correctly.
In this case we are being shown the line testing tool, which line testing technicians (12 in total) use in the field to test the GSRs in location to make sure that they are functioning properly. There is no direct connection to the recording devices (as there is in a cable system), so doing QC checking on the devices (which each can hold up to a months worth of data) is absolutely critical.
In the base camp area, there was another trailer dedicated to safety, where a team checked in with all of the individuals in the field every 30 (or 60) minutes. No pictures of that one, but it was pretty boring (computer, radio gear IIRC).
Then it was off to the next site (I’m calling it “Shooting Central” where all of the seismic shooting activity was coordinated. This is moved periodically to keep within optimal range of the field units creating the seismic data. The trailer on the right with the antenna was quite amazingly tall.
The next trailer to tour was the one where the current shooting is going on. I probably didn’t understand all that was going on (as it sounded like it was in Spanish), but the amount of information that the tech was keeping track of was fairly impressive. I am aware that there were at least 5 teams out in the field (dynamite, the mini-vibes, and three teams of the large vibe units).
After a tramp through the woods, we saw (or rather felt) three dynamite shot points being set off. No pictures, because we had to have cellphones off at that point, and secondly we were at least 100 feet away through the woods so there wasn’t a whole lot to see.
Doug took us by a site where they were doing some experimental testing with a new possible energy source. Things weren’t moving quickly (nor apparently had they the day before) so after hanging around for a while in the heat, we headed for lunch.
After lunch we managed to capture the set of mini-vibes (I’m pretty sure this isn’t the right terminology) going through town (and creating data on the way) with a police escort. These look like stuff that I used to build out of Lego.
Following that it was on to see the big vibrator units working out in the fields around town.
There were a few things that I found interesting. One, that they worked in sets of three. Secondly, although you cannot see it, under the cab on these units were hung a lot of weights. I’m guessing that the front and back need to be similar in weight to provide proper downward pressure on the ground while vibrating. Thirdly, the vibration starts at a low frequency (8 Hz) and works up to 96 Hz. This makes it easier for the processors to filter out noise at different levels. Here are the units heading through a field to their next set of shot points.
After that it was back into the van and back to Houston. An informative and adventurous day was had by all.
Oh, and here’s my picture (at the gas station on the way home).
While walking around downtown Calgary yesterday, I encountered an outdoor set of escalators (which is sort of weird given the climate), but it was the sign on the escalators that really caught my attention:
I didn’t know which one was the down escalator and which was the up one, so I kept right on walking. I mean, what if while going up the down escalator I ran onto someone. That would really be awkward…
Oh, and just to clarify, the acting like stairs bit referred to the escalators not working.
While at an event the other day, Danaya, Daelynn, and I were playing around with a new app on my phone. The app in question is called PicSay Pro and let you mess with your existing pictures – adding speech and thought bubbles as well as all manner of other silliness.
So, here’s some of our output…
So, no deep thoughts or inspirational stories, just some imagination.
OMSI round two
On Wednesday, we teamed up with Grandpa Ron for another activity day at OMSI (the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry).
This time we packed a lunch, which was good because the cafeteria was closed for renovations. There were a couple of exhibits closed and being switched out, but there was still plenty to do in all sorts of areas including the chemistry lab and the science playground. Here are a bunch more pictures…
Dog show redux
Following are some pictures from the dog show, all of which (I think) were taken by Davison. So, in other words, the quality and appropriate subject matter may diverge from the theme of “dog show” other than the location being at the Spruce Meadows grounds where the dog show was taking place.
Although I suspect that I was the one that took the picture of Brock, the light bulb and the smiley guy definitely weren’t taken by me. Often enough, on my camera, I will find pictures of Davison’s feet.
And according to dictionary.com, “redux” means “to bring back.”