Category Archives: Photography

Summer Highlights

For our anniversary, my husband gave me a very nice digital camera.  I put it to good use this summer during my travels.  It is so enjoyable to look back through photos and remember special moments.  Here are a few of my favorites.

Taking photos at Saddle Pass in the South Dakota Badlands.

Photographing scenery at Saddle Pass in the South Dakota Badlands.

A gorgeous metal sculpture at the Porter Sculpture Park in Montrose, SD.

A gorgeous metal sculpture  of a pierced hand with butterfly resting on the finger; Porter Sculpture Park in Montrose, SD.

 

Goldfish lined up along the road at the Sculpture Park.

Goldfish lined up along the road at the Sculpture Park.

 

My son enjoying a moment on a pile of stones left over from mining attempts.

My son enjoying a snack on a pile of stones at a family gold claim.

 

The Al's Oasis sign at Oacoma, with the legendary buffalo mascot.

The famous Al’s Oasis sign at Oacoma, South Dakota.

 

Becoming acquainted with The Ballerina at Porter Sculpture Park.

Becoming acquainted with The Ballerina at Porter Sculpture Park.

 

Choosing the perfect steed for a carousel ride.

Choosing the perfect steed for a carousel ride is very important.

 

Our first apple tree, which gave us five incredible apples this summer!

Our first apple tree gave us five incredible tasting apples this summer!

 

My daughter watching festivities on the Fourth of July.

Watching festivities at the Junction City Fourth of July carnival.

 

Fishing with Daddy in Texas.

Fishing with Daddy for perch on Horseshoe Bay in Marble Falls, Texas.

 

Getting friendly with a skeleton at Porter Sculpture Park.

My sister getting friendly with a skeleton at Porter Sculpture Park.

 

At the Chipmunk Village.

Relaxing at the Chipmunk Village on the family gold claim.

 

My son, feeling on top of the world.

My son, feeling on top of the world.

 

My mother smiling and enjoying an afternoon on the gold claim.

My mother smiling and enjoying an afternoon on the gold claim.

The breathtaking view at Falls Park in Sioux Falls, South Dakota.

The breathtaking view at Falls Park in Sioux Falls, South Dakota.

 

A photo of Ross the Dog, taken by my daughter on her digital camera.

A fantastic photo of Ross the Dog, taken by my daughter on her digital camera.

 

A raggedy sunflower in my backyard, turned toward the morning sunlight.

A raggedy sunflower in my backyard, turned toward the morning sunlight.

I hope that you all had a memorable summer, and that your autumn is crisp and refreshing!

~G

 

 

 

 

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So Things Got a Little Weird…

A trip to South Dakota usually involves some level of weirdness.  My family is pretty eccentric.  We do things differently and while it’s easy to predict that there will be weirdness happening during a visit back home, we just don’t know exactly what the weirdness will be.  So, I have compiled a list of  bizarre happenings during this year’s trip to South Dakota.

5.  Being on a week-long Prednisone regimen as a migraine preventative during the trip.  Nothing inherently strange about this, except that the major side effect was my insatiable urge to break into spontaneous song and dance in public locations, much like the Leland Palmer character in Twin Peaks.  I performed ABBA’s Dancing Queen using over-sized salt shakers and crispy corn dogs as microphones in roadside restaurants, and shimmied down grocery store aisles to Prince’s Little Red Corvette, much to the mortification of my children.  I’m fine now, absolutely NO urge to sing or dance now that the Prednisone is safely out of my system.

4.  Speaking of Twin Peaks: this totally random and un-staged reference to the show mesmerized me  in the guest room at my parents’ place.

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Paging Killer Bob…

3.  Speaking of random: A visit to the Porter Sculpture Park outside of Montrose, South Dakota.  The sculpture park is a remnant from my childhood.  Originally, sculptures were dreamed up and assembled in St. Lawrence, South Dakota.  As a small child, I would walk the two or three blocks on a loose gravel road from my grandparents’ house to the Porter workshop to stare in wonder at skeletal dragons delicately sniffing daisies and giant goldfish escaping a massive silver bowl.

 

IMG_0088My favorite was always The Ballerina, a naked woman made of tiny metal tiles, kneeling on a platform, scooping up some of her loose tiles with a little broom and dustpan.  There is something both wistful and majestic about her, like she is mourning her loose tiles.  Seeing her on the vast South Dakota prairie was incredible.

We also looked at the giant Bull Head, an amazing structure that hides some rather weird and mystical secrets inside.  Bats, snakes, and demons are assembled inside the enormous structure.  My husband commented as we strolled away, “Does it strike you as a bit Satanic?”  The artist is an interesting fellow — friendly and all about providing tourists with an unusual experience.  He accused my husband of being a Canadian when Van turned down a complimentary post tour Hershey’s Kiss, and he offered to perform a Gypsy blessing on our SUV.  It was the best tourist attraction we’ve ever visited!

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The Bull Head monument at the Porter Sculpture Park, Montrose, SD.

2.  Driving across a surreal South Dakota prairie, post October 2013 Blizzard.  I embraced the opportunity to spend time on some of South Dakota’s less known highways and found myself in areas devastated by last October’s blizzard, which killed tens of thousands of cattle.  I was simply in awe of what the weather left behind.  Instead of clear evidence of the devastation and death, there was nothing but rolling plain upon rolling plain of emerald green, yardstick tall grass, the likes of which I had never seen on the prairie in my years of living in South Dakota.  The cattle that had survived looked fat and slick as they grazed next to plump antelope.  Horses were up to their bellies in grasses, and they appeared to be swimming as they loped across pastures swaying like water.  The killing blizzard and harsh winter with heavy, lasting snows had left an abundance of  food and energy on the prairie for all that had survived, with no mention or apology for the price that had been paid for the shining beauty rolling before us.  It was a strange feeling to know and understand the harshness of the land.

1.  An early Father’s Day gift for Dad: a visit from the American Pickers!  Okay, so it wasn’t the actual Pickers, and I have no real proof of this happening.  But why would I make this up?  So a producer from the show American Pickers contacted me because last year I signed my parents up for a visit (you can do that on the show’s Website).  My parents are hoarders and they live in an 80 year old school = perfect material for the show.  Anyway, a producer from the show contacted me and said he wanted to visit the school to see what Dad had available for the guys to *pick*.  So, using my natural charm and communication skills, I did what I could to make things happen, and the crew (not the actual Pickers – sorry, I realize this is not as cool as I want it to sound) came to scope out the school and interview Dad.  I wasn’t actually there at the time.  I have no proof to back up my story.  I have nothing to indicate that anything exciting even happened, but Dad was really happy that he got to meet a friendly T.V. producer, give a tour of the school, and possibly have a return visit from the Pickers.  It made his day.

And these still weren’t the weirdest things that have ever happened during a trip to South Dakota.

— G

 

 

 

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Christmas for Ross the Dog

Of course Ross the Dog received gifts on Christmas Day!  We didn’t know that he is really good at unwrapping presents, and he had his tennis ball launcher ready in under a minute!
"I can do it myself!"

“I can do it myself!”

"This looks like a ball!"

“This looks like a ball!”

"Let me just get this paper out of the way..."

“Let me just get this paper out of the way…”

"Oh!  There are two balls on here!"

“Oh! There are two balls on here!”

"Oh boy, oh boy, oh boy!!!"

“Oh boy, oh boy, oh boy!!!”

"I am going to chew on this now until it is taken away from me."

“I am going to chew on this now until it is taken away from me.”

"Okay, I will hand it over, but you have to play with me right now!"

“Okay, I will hand it over, but you have to play with me right now!”

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“Here Daddy.”

"Okay, I'm ready!  Let's go play now!"

“Okay, I’m ready! Let’s go play now!”

Ross wishes you all very Happy Holidays!

My Favorite Things

A few of my favorite December things, just in time for Christmas!

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A roaring fire on a cold snowy day…

Footprints

Footprints of Man and Man’s Best Friend in the frost, when they came outside to grab more firewood…

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Ross the Dog playing in the brand new snow…

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Vividly colored Christmas lights on everything…

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Shiny antique glass ball ornaments…

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The deep crimson of a happy little Poinsettia…

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Homemade Kielbasa (with bits of fresh snow) going straight from the porch to the skillet…

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Zingy citrus, ready for festive dishes…

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A warm loaf of braided Christmas bread to share…

Blue

Glowing candles giving off comforting heat…

Ornament

Sparkling ornaments to put on the tree…

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A blurry Yellow Lab in a jaunty Christmas bib…

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Now sit…stay…that’s more like it…Good dog…!
Benz in Snow

A little snow is nice…

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But a lot is even better…!

Out the Window

Together time with family and friends…

Storybook Island

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And the reason why we celebrate Christmas.

May your Christmas be Merry and Bright!

Happy Holidays and Blessings to You and Yours,

G

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A postcard that I sent to my family in 2003.

An aerial view of palace architecture.

An aerial view of interrupted architecture.

Chandeliers broken from the percussions of bomb blasts look like mirror reflections.

Chandeliers broken from the percussions of bomb blasts look like mirror reflections.

Civilian food service workers take a break outside the Engineer Village DFAC.

Civilian food service workers wait for food shipments outside the Engineer Village DFAC.

Pillars on a bridge over the Tigris River, as we flew by!

Pillars on a bridge over the Tigris River, as we flew by!

A painting of a craftsman that I purchased at the bazaar.

A painting of a craftsman that I purchased at the bazaar.

Soldiers taking a break; view from inside an old workshop.

Looking out from inside an old workshop at soldiers relaxing on their lunch break.

Girl preparing her supplies on her first day of school.

Girl preparing her supplies on her first day of school.

Basket of dates given to soldiers by Iraqis hired to work in camp.

Basket of dates given to soldiers by Iraqis hired to work in camp.

My beautiful picture

A towering and unique Saddam era bat house.

A postcard picture of one of Saddam's palaces.

A postcard picture of one of Saddam’s palaces.

A palatial complex built over the water.

A palatial complex built over the water.

The Crossed Sabers Monument at the Gates of Hell.

The Crossed Sabers Monument at the Gates of Hell.

Woman and Baby

A mother and baby at a local school.

An enormous palm tree.

An enormous palm tree appears to be an imposing shaggy creature!

My beautiful picture

A sparkling sunset through an old Iraqi arch.

A beautiful palace through the trees.

A beautiful palace through the trees contrasts the dull terrain on BIAP.

Floors of scaffolding in an abandoned palace, and a view outside.

Floors of scaffolding in an abandoned palace, and a view outside.

Baby

A baby sister accompanying her sibling to an Iraqi school.

Two Iraqi women walking in the Green Zone.

Two Iraqi women walking down a Baghdad street.

A mosque in the BIAP area.

A mosque in the BIAP area.

Bomb damage found in one of Saddam's palaces during a survey expedition.

Bomb damage found in one of Saddam’s palaces during a survey expedition.

A bombed out palace over the water.

A bombed out palace seems to hover precariously over the water.

My beautiful picture

A warning spray painted on a barrier as we approached the Iraqi border.

Maryem and I3

My favorite part of deployment? Meeting and helping children! They are the same in every country.

This collection of pictures represents some of the amazing images and impressions that dazzled me while I was stationed at Baghdad International Airport.  I hope that you enjoyed looking at Iraq through my eyes!

— G

Copyright 2014.  All photographs on this post are the personal property of Georgeann Van Delist and represent vital intellectual property connected with the site http://www.bloggingpioneer.com.  Unauthorized use and/or reproduction of these materials is strictly prohibited.  

Rural Missouri Life in Photos

Images captured during my trip to visit my sister in rural Missouri.

Apples plucked from a Missouri orchard.

Apples plucked from a Missouri orchard.

Fluffy Silver Laced Cochin.

Fluffy Silver Laced Cochin.

Feeding lettuce to the girls.

Feeding lettuce to the girls.

Henya the Cinnamon Queen.

Henya the Cinnamon Queen.

Lily pads on an autumn pond.

Lily pads on an autumn pond.

A new feathered friend.

A new feathered friend.

Rusty golden leaves against a bright blue sky.

Rusty golden leaves against a bright blue sky.

Fresh local pears, ready to be devoured.

Fresh local pears, ready to be devoured.

King of the coup, through the wire.

King of the coup, through the wire.

Spud prepares to dive into the water to retrieve his toy.

Spud prepares to dive into the water to retrieve his toy.

Keeping an eye on the flock.

Keeping an eye on the flock.

A big beautiful tree.

A big beautiful tree.

Photography by Georgeann Van Delist, October 2013.

Copyright Georgeann Van Delist, 2014.  The photography in this post is the property of Georgeann Van Delist and http://www.bloggingpioneer.com.  Any unauthorized use and/or reproduction of materials from this site is strictly prohibited.  No materials may be used without express and written permission from the site owner and author, and credit must be linked back to the original source.