Sunday, May 31, 2009

Saying Good Bye

One of the most, if not the most challenging day in any person's life is saying Good Bye when it is not know if the individual will ever return.

Every month many of our Nation's Warriors leave the United States of America for deployments overseas in defense of our Country. Here you see a Sailor stationed on an Aircraft Carrier getting ready for that Good Bye Kiss.
I know that everyone who has ever deployed has their own special way of handling the emotions of this day. Yet our Heroes continue to leave Family, Friends and Loved Ones behind to do what needs to be done.
I would urge you to keep these Warriors in your daily prayers. Additionally, please keep those they leave behind in your daily prayers. We can certainly do no less.
God Bless America!!!!!

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Think Community
On January 13th our Bibb County Commissioners conducted their first "Heart to Hart" meeting so that the citizens of Bibb County could express their concerns about what needs to be done. The outcome of this series was a slogan the Commissioners adopted. The slogan is "Think Community.
During the first Heart to Hart meeting I took notes and I summarized them in this Blog, which I will copy here:

  • Uniform Code Enforcement throughout the County.

  • Lack of cooperation between the City/County as regards protecting the Citizens.

  • Future Development of Industry and Commercial Activity.

  • Potential Industry looks at Quality of Life Issues and how well the School Systems are functioning along with the general appearance of the Community.

  • It was clearly indicated by several speakers that our future depends on what is happening within the City as well as the entire County. Everyone has a responsibility to be a viable "Gate Keeper" in their local community.

  • The need for cooperation and a dynamic can do attitude must be present in the respective Government Agencies within the County as well as the City. No one should have to report a problem and receive the brush off. All Government Employees must have a can do attitude and respect the Citizens.

  • We The People must hold our duly elected Leaders accountable.

  • As the County Commissioners prepare the next Fiscal Year Budget they will be faced with dynamic challenges.

  • Each and Every Citizen must be aware that there will be sacrifices required of each of us as we consider our "Real Needs" versus "What We Want" from our respective Governments.
I was fortunate yesterday (May 27th) when I viewed the evening news. Serveral of Macon's City Council Members are very concerned about the Eisenhower Parkway avenue. Today I took the opportunity to see for my self what is going on in this area.

As potential shoppers move away from these areas the store owners move out to areas that are deemed safer. That is also a concern. Safety is a state of mind. I can recall stories of events happening at "The Macon Mall" from my coworkers who had teen agers during the 1980s. I could not believe the stories that I heard, but they must have been circulated quite well. While the current economic situation has caused some distress in the past eighteen months as regards shoppers, I can assure you that concerns about safety let an abundance of store owners to relocate away from this Eisenhower Parkway area. After all it usually takes at least a year to develop a new shopping area and we all know that it has taken well over a year here in Macon to construct the Shoppes at Riverside and the Presidential Parkway Shopping areas. The areas shown here in these pictures were simply abandoned because the store owners could not afford to keep them open with no shoppers who in most cases did not shop here because of safety concerns. Safety concerns that may or may not have been valid but the concerns drove the shoppers away.

You can quickly ascertain that we do indeed have a problem. I reflected back on the January 13th 2009 Heart to Hart Meeting. I recalled that one individual in particular spoke on the need for adequate "Code Enforcement." When property owners are not held to the standards required in a community the area goes down hill. Homes are sold to "Landlords" and caring citizens and their families move to a better area. So the downward spiral has begun. Renters in general are not known for maintaining the property and the Landlords keep up their homes at an acceptable level. Acceptable level has many definitions and unfortunately many renters have no choice so the downward spiral speeds up.
Now the concerned members of Macon's City Council are going to launch a study to ascertain if the population near these Eisenhower Parkway shopping areas have moved away. During my travels today I also visited the area just West of the former Westgate Shopping Center and also North of the Southwest High School. This area has been rebuilt quite well since the "Mother's Day Tornados" of 2008.
So I came away with the impression that why would the Macon City Council want to study where people live. I do believe each Council Member who is concerned can simply visit the Macon-Bibb County Board of Elections to quickly ascertain how many people are living in their respective Wards.
Additionally, it appears to me that the Members of our Bibb County School Board have faith in this area. Why else would they be building such a wonderful educational facility on Williamson Road. For those who may not know, Williamson Road is very near the Eisenhower Parkway area that our Macon City Council is concerned about.

This new facility certainly displays the faith that our Bibb County School Board has placed in this area. I would humbly suggest that our Macon City Council cancel their study and get on with the following:
  • Code Inforcement
  • Law Enforcement
  • Coordination with the Chamber of Commerce to bring in new light industry
  • Coordinate with the Macon-Bibb County Planning and Zoning to allow this light industry in this area

Admittedly this is a quick overview but I do believe that our Bibb County Commissioners have approached the situations facing all of us Bibb County Citizens in the proper manner.

Yes, We all need to think Community. Sometimes that requires all of our elected leaders to strive for what is good for the general well being of all of the citizens in Macon and Bibb County without regard to which Ward or District the improvements are located.

I can also recall a recent County Commission Meeting where the Commissoners suggested that maybe a "Lobbyist" was needed to inteface with our Bibb Delegation at the State level.

Do we need a Lobbyist to coordinate the City of Macon and Bibb County. I would suggest a resounding "No!!!!!" Communication is key and we do all need to "Think Community" and coordinate our labors for the good of all concerned.

For me the concept of "Think Community" is the first step toward destroying the barriers we currently have at the local level where some of our duly elected leaders are so inwardly focused that they can not see the big picture.

Conclusion: The Bibb School Board has done their part. Now the City and County need to march of in a smart manner to renovate the Eisenhower Parkway area. No easy task, but the consequences of no action or slow action will be terrible.

Medical School Training

Today, in The World This Week, I focus on a tradition that involves Medical Schools. You can see this plaque and the actual tree at the Mercer University School of Medicine in Macon, Georgia.

The cutting of 2000 has certainly grown well. I would estimate that this Olive Tree is now at least eighteen feet tall.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Memorial Day 2009 - We Remember

National Military Appreciation Month

The month of May has been set asside as "National Military Appreciation Month." In the image above you can view a Coast Guard Captain as a speaker at a Memorial Day Activity.

A view of our Air Force Heroes as they participate in an appropriate Memorial Day 2009 Event.

Our United States Marines participated in an impressive ceremony at a Major League Baseball Game to honor our fallen Heroes during the Memorial Day Observance.

Here you see members of the U. S. Army as they proceed to the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier at Arlington Cemetery. Our President participates in this event every year.

Here Sailors of the U. S. Navy assist with the repairs of a Cemetery in the State of New York as a fitting 2009 Memorial Day Observance event.
As we reflect back on Memorial Day 2009 it is important to always remember that this is the Holiday set aside to Honor our Nation's Fallen Heroes of all Wars.
God Bless America.

2010 Budget Cycle
We all realize that Governments at all levels, except for the Federal Government, must live within their means. I recently discussed the current budget cycle of the City of Macon, Georgia on Talk Back 13 here in Middle Georgia. While my examples cited the City of Macon, the general comments/concerns are certainly valid for every elected official as they engage in the 2010 Budget Cycle.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Middle Georgia Challenge

This weather observation device was photographed in Bibb County, Georgia. As usual you are challenged to identify the location of this device. You must state the building name and location in the comments section below in order to be a winner. This Challenge will close at 2400, Sunday, May 31, 2009.
As usual, the first one in with the correct answer will be a lunch guest of the Flower Child at a location determined by the originator of this Challenge.

Recently I read where we as a society have lost the art of sending Thank You notes to individuals and even organizations that certainly deserve our gratitude.

Some will state that they are too busy to take the time to compose a brief note. Others will say that they do not know what to say. In my brief life on this planet I have learned that the quickest way to introduce a new habit is to put the concept into practice.

What I find amazing is the fact that some organizations that depend on volunteers and donations to operate are often the first to not display gratitude in a meaningful way. I am seriously considering terminating my support for any organization or even an individual that cannot display some measure of gratitude by sending a note. Before you think this is self centered, please take the time to reflect on a situation where you expended an effort to help an individual or an organization. The receipt of a Thank You note warmed your heart and also impressed you.

Implementation of this policy will certainly eliminate my involvement with several organizations and also free me to engage in other worthwhile opportunities.

So you are possibly wondering why the picture of blooming Easter Lilies to start this post? These flowers were in full bloom this past Sunday at the Church I attend. Some might say a little late for Easter, but let me remind all here that last Sunday was the Seventh Sunday of Easter. The flowers blooming were certainly appropriate. Think for a Moment: "When was the last time you displayed your gratitude for what you have?" Specifically in view of the Easter Lily picture. When was the last time you entered your place of worship to personally "Thank Your God?"

Monday, May 25, 2009

Rodney M. Davis
Linwood Cemetery

Rodney M. Davis of the United States Marine Corps is Macon, Georgia's Medal of Honor Winner. He gave his life during the Vietnam War. He is remembered with a special place in Macon's historic Linwood Cemetery. I visited the site today as a part of my Memorial Day events. The place was calm and serene and I appreciated the private time there.

By clicking on the plaque you should be able to read the words easier. Rodney M. Davis certainly was a Hero.

The tombstone of Rodney M. Davis.

2009 Memorial Day
Linwood Cemetery
Macon, Georgia

The Presentation of the Colors was conducted by the Honor Guard from the Macon-Bibb County Fire Department.

Mr. Bert Bivins, a Bibb County Commissioner, let us all in singing the National Anthem.

The Keynote speaker, Mr. Ronnie Miley reminded us all why we observe Memorial Day. We gather together to remember those who gave their lives for our Freedoms.

Rabbi Larry Schlesinger prayed the Closing Prayer. A very appropriate Memorial Day Program. I would estimate the crowd to be at least one hundren citizens.

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Memorial Day 2009

(May 20, 2009) The guided-missile cruiser USS Vella Gulf (CG 72) transits the Hudson River during the Parade of Ships as part of Fleet Week New York City 2009. Approximately 3,000 Sailors, Marines and Coast Guardsman will participate in the 22nd commemoration of Fleet Week New York. This event will provide the citizens of New York City and surrounding tri-state area an opportunity to meet service members and also see the latest capabilities of today's maritime services. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class David Danals/Released)
Please be aware that the USS Vella Gulf (CG 72) most recently saw duty as a part of Combined Task Force 151 in the Gulf of Aden. The USS Gettysburg (CG 64) is now operating in the Gulf of Aden.

ANNAPOLIS, M.D. (May 22, 2009) A newly commissioned ensign celebrates after receiving his diploma from Capt. Matthew Klunder, U.S. Naval Academy Commandant of Midshipmen, at the U.S. Naval Academy during the graduation and commissioning ceremony for the Class of 2009. This year's class graduated 785 ensigns and 233 Marine Corps 2nd lieutenants in front of an audience of 27,000 at Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium. (U.S. Navy photo by Gin Kai/Released)
Memorial Day 2009 is not yet over. I, the Flower Child would encourage everyone to view the 20th Annual Memorial Day Concert from the Mall in front of the United States Capitol on Sunday, May 24th. This Concert will be at 8:00 P.M. on Public Television.
We who reside in the United States of America have been well blessed. Please take some time on Monday, May 25th to remember those who have given all in defense of our way of life.
My prayer this 2009 Memorial Day is: "May God Continue To Bless America." Thank You.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

National Health Care
Socialized Medicine
For some time now we here in the United States of America have heard from our elected leaders how our Health Care System needs help. I remember way back in the 1990s when there was a major thrust to have some sort of National Health Care. More recently we are hearing more about health care for all because we have so many in our country who do not even have health insurance.
All of this is very noble conversation and certainly deserves a National Debate. That stated, many who do not have adequate health care insurance or availability to decent health care are simply their own victims. Way back when they made some very poor choices and now they have poor health and/or health care is not available.
This is indeed a sad situation. However, we must also realize that at the current time, we here in the United States of America have the best health care available for our citizens when we compare it with anyother country in the World. Yes, I have lived in a foreign country. The United Kingdom to be specific. I had two wonderful children born there in a U. S. Air Force Base Hospital. You may be interested in knowing that the Doctor who delivered these two wonderful children was a "Former" Doctor to the Royal Family. He could make much more money and have a much better schedule of work at the U. S. Air Force Base versus being a Royal Doctor. He told me this himself so I have no reason to suspect his statement.
Why do I share this with you today? My purpose is to clearly point out that while the concept of a National Health Care Scheme or even Socialized Medicine sounds grand in theory let me be one of the first to inform you that "Waiting Rooms" in the United Kingdom were full of patients and a good number of them held their system of health care in distain.
Now, come with me to the airport in Rochester, Minnesota. The Mayo Clinic is headquartered in Rochester. On any given day you can view aircraft from a plethora of countries. Individuals who have the necessary funds and in most cases a private airplane frequently travel to the Mayo Clinics to receive the best health care in the World. If you doubt this statement visit:
Please be aware that the Mayo Clinics see over 350,000 patients in a year. You do not have to be numbered among the rich and famous to be seen at the Mayo Clinics. As most of my readers here know, I was raised in the Midwest of our great Country. I was raised the oldest of six children in the 40s and 50s by an Iowa Farm Couple that farmed a mere 80 acres of soil that they owned. Of course as the children grew older they did rent additional farm ground for a cash grain operation. I say this to simply stated that I did not originate in a rich or powerful Midwest Farm Family. Yet, when anyone had a serious health issue the Health Care Facility of Choice was the Mayo Clinic in Rochester.
My own Mother was a patient there and received excellent health care from a caring and compassionate staff.
Yet we have a vocal group of leaders, mostly elected individuals who now think that we need a National Health Care scheme in our United States of America. Having lived in a foreign country with a National Health Care scheme I can personally testify that we do not any government health care scheme or socialized medicine. If the schemes currently in operation in foreign countries is so good why do those with the resources travel to the United States of America?
I think I made it quite clear when I cited my own Mother's Health Care in this country we are very fortunate to reside in the United States of America. Why would we even consider messing up the greatest health care in the world?
Additionally, we currently have Hospitals that are required by law to render health care to our Nations's Needy. Or do we need National Health Care or as I prefer to call it, Socialized Medicine so that the politicans can be reelected. The concept to providing everything that a citizen may need is appealing to some politicans in their quest to be reelected. However, from what I experienced while living in the United Kingdom we simply do not need this type of care in our country.
Consider the Doctor who formerly worked for the Royal Family and how he improved his lot in life by working for the U. S. Air Force. Admittedly our Military Doctors are operating in a health care scheme, but to have a whole country with an aging population seeking health care and having some "medical clerk" determing if care is warranted is beyond my comprehension of caring and compassionate care.
When I am older I desire the best care that is available, not what some "medical clerk" determines I may qualify for versus my age, and who knows what other standards will be considered.
Everyone of us is too precious to place our health care into the hands of any socialized medicine scheme.
Please be sure that the 350,000 patients who visit the Mayo Clinics each year are from our entire U. S. A. and many other countries in our World. Everyone deserves the best!!!!!
2009 Stimulus Payment

Several weeks ago I received information that I would receive a $250.00 check from our Federal Government to help stimulate our economy. I was also informed that this was the sum that Citizens who draw Social Security would receive and that it would be direct deposit to my Checking Account.
In as much as I, the Flower Child always like to plan ahead I visited Jacks Saw Shop here in Macon to ascertain what I would be available once my Stimulus Payment was received. I needed to acquire a "Weedeater" to help control the abundance of weeds that thrive around my Home.
I found a Stihl HomeScaper Series Model 56 which fit within the financial limits of my Stimulus Payment. Yesterday I acquired information that my Payment had been received by my Bank. I was originally informed that these payments would be made on or about May 25th so the opportunity was available to purchase my new Stihl Trimmer. I visited Jack's Saw Shop today and obtained my Trimmer. As I discussed the purchase the Staff at the Saw Shop informed me that the Stihl Trimmer Products are made in America, Virginia Beach, Virginia to be specific. I was very happy to learn this information. The fuel container I purchased was also made in the United States of America.
So, today I can proudly say that I am proud to be an American who can expend the 2009 Stimulus Payment for products that were made in the United States of America. A refreshing experience to be sure.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Stop Socialism

Admittedly I, the Flower Child am not that well educated. What I do know however, is that we in the United States of America cannot continue to go down the path of socialism. We cannot tax our way back to prosperity.
I understand that the citizens of California rejected five proposals for tax increases yesterday. These increases were necessary because the state has a budget deficit in the billions. Additionally the citizens of California also voted to support a move where it's lawmakers could not give themselves a pay raise at this time.
As I read this news I began to think, "Is it possible that the Citizens of California have this one correct?" From what I have heard even the good citizens of our U. S. House Speaker District rejected the California Tax increases.
Maybe the ground swell of public opinion which was the focus of the April 15th "Tea Bag Parties" is now producing results. If I remember correctly there were some political leaders and even media outlets that tried to down play the impact of the April 15th Tea Bag Parties.
So my question today is: "Is This The Beginning Of a Citizens Take Over Of The United States Of America.?"

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

A Field Trip to LaGrange, Georgia
Historic Home Of The Fuller E. Callaway Family

The Flower Child and His Bride took a Field Trip to LaGrange, Georgia to visit Hills and Dales Estate. The current home on this estate was build in 1916 at a cost of $125,000.00. The site was first developed by Sarah Ferrell in 1841. The Ferrell family sold the gardens developed by Sarah and Nancy in 1911 to Fuller E. Callaway. Fuller was married to Ida Carson. This garden is the "Ray Garden" which is former years was actually a vegetable garden.

You can appreciate that the Estate is studded with large trees. This one caught my eye and I just had to take a picture of it.

The Gardens surrounding this historic home are very pleasant to enjoy and were developed over a period of well over one hundred years. Fuller E. Callaway was a very successful textile manufacturer and he commissioned an Atlanta Architectural Firm to design the family home which is in excellent repair.

This lovely home was designed by Neil Reid who also designed many homes in Macon, Georgia.

The estate covers 35 acres and is maintained by a Foundation established by the Callaway Family. This picture shows the Flower Child taking a break on the trip from the Home to the Hills and Dales Welcome Center.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Spent Shell Casings
Brass Sales to China
I Can Not Believe this is Happening
I have recently been made aware of a terrible situation that is happening in our United States of America.
But first, let me discuss my position regarding our Nation's Defense Establishment. I am old enough to know that during World War II our Nation's Factory Infrastructure allowed us to build "Liberty Ships" at Kaiser Shipbuilding in California in a mere six days. I am also aware that our automobile factories were converted to manufacture tanks and jeeps. Additionally our Aircraft Production Facilities produced an abundance of bombers and fighters which allowed us to win the War.
With this background in mind I can firmly support our Governments actions to keep our U. S. Automobile Manufacturing capacity in the United States of America.
All of this stated to simply let you know that I was shocked to learn that recently our Department of Defense is selling the spent shell casings to China at a price lower than our own reloading companies based in the U. S. A. have been previously paying. Plus the Defense Department is shredding the cases at expense to us all before it is sold to the Chinese.
It is my understanding that prior to the establishment of this new Department of Defense (DOD) policy/procedure that our U. S. A. reloading industry was buying these spent shell casings, reloading them and selling them to Law Enforcement Agencies, Gun Clubs and Retailers in our Country.
When shell manufactures have to rely on new shell casings the cost of training the members of our Law Enforcement Agencies and our Nation's Heroes in the U. S. Military will possibly double or even triple. This in a time when we are hoping that our Tax Dollars can be used most effectively for our very own protection, both on a World Wide Scale and in our own Cities, States and yes, even our own Nation.
I have also heard that our current administration is working to place a 500 percent tax on each shell. I certainly hope that this is an untruth. As a Nation we are all aware that our current Freedoms did not come about casually. As we approach Memorial Day 2009 and look forward to Veteran's Day 2009 let us all remember that "Freedom is Not Free."
I think everyone in our Country today can tell you the name of a Hero within their own Family, or at least within their circle of Friends and Neighbors who has been killed in action in defense of our United States of America.
It appears to me, The Flower Child, that our current government is taking a few pages out of the "Play Book" that was used during the 1930s in Germany. My fellow Americans, we simply cannot stand by and let this happen in our United States of America.
Thank You!!!

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Field Trip - May 16, 2009

Last evening, May 16th the Flower Child and his Middle Georgia Family conducted a field trip. It was very educational and the Grand Daughter enjoyed the event very much.
These Elk were enjoying the view as we drove up to them. A wonderful event.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Religious Freedom

Macon, Georgia is known as a City of many steeples. So the statement that the Flower Child wishes to make this evening is: "Where will you spend your Sunday morning?

Friday, May 15, 2009

Climbing Hydrangea

Frequent readers here will know that I enjoy gardening and also photographing flowers. Here is yet another picture of the Climbing Hydrangea that adorns the North Side of the Flower Child's Home here in West Bibb County. This has been a delightful Spring for this plant which is not supposed to bloom here in Middle Georgia. Enjoy!!!!

Thursday, May 14, 2009

911 Calls to Police
Macon, Georgia
In order to reduce people power requirements to staff the 911 Call Center in Macon and to reduce the administrative duties of the Police Officers the City of Macon is currrently considering the implementation of the following scheme to forward 911 Calls made to the Police Department:
"911 - Macon Police. Please listen to our Menu"
  • Please Press 1 if you are an elected City Official to reach the Chief of Police.
  • Please Press 2 if you are a current contributor to the Fraternal Order of Police for prompt service.
  • Please Press 3 if you desire to report a killing. Your call will be placed in a priority order scheme for appropriate call back as soon as possible. Please be aware that at the current time our Staff is investigating stray or mad dog compliants.
  • Please Press 4 if you desire to report a rape in progress. You call will be immediately forwarded to Crisis Line.
  • Please Press 5 if you desire to report a theft or armed robbery. The investigators will be able to visit the crime scene once City Council procures operational Police Vehicles.
  • Please Press 6 if you are frustrated with the current safety situation in Macon. Please have your voter registration card ready so that your call can be routed to the appropriate Council Person for your Ward.

Thank You and have a Great Day!! Your Call is important to us and we appreciate you as a citizen of "Flag City U. S. A."

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Training the Future U. S. Navy Officers

. (May 12, 2009) Midshipmen from the U.S. Naval Academy Class of 2012 cross a creek at Naval Support Activity Annapolis during the land navigation phase of the Sea Trials. Based on the Navy's Battle Stations and the Marine Corps' Crucible, Sea Trials is the capstone training evolution for the Naval Academy freshmen class. The plebes navigate physical and mental challenges, ranging from obstacle courses, long-distance group runs, damage control scenarios, and water training. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Philip McDaniel/Released)

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Superb Entertainment
Not only was it superb, it was cost effective. It was free. Last evening the Flower Child and his Bride attended the Senior Piano Recital by T. M. Intaphan in Fickling Hall, the McCorkle Music Building of Mercer University here in Macon, Georgia.
This event featured a graduating High School Senior who has been a student of Susan McDuffie since he was age 11. The program featured classical music by Bach, Mozart, Chopin and Valenti. After a brief intermission the performer was joined by friends who are also known as the "Blue Sax Band" and Jazz music was performed.
This young man entertained us all and also displayed a level of proficiency not normally found in a High School Senior. Additionally, several of the piano selections featured in the jazz segment were composed by the performer.
Yes, there are great entertainment events in Macon and Middle Georgia. One must simply attend and enjoy.

Monday, May 11, 2009

Updating Houses

It seems that every article you read or every program on the electronic media about housing encourages the home owner to update their homes so that someday they will be worth more when it comes time to sell.
From my point of view this appears to be an over abundance of marketing and an effective way for the plethora of home remodelers, builders and material suppliers to keep their businesses thriving. I for one think this is a great move for the economy. I am currently investigating the need for new brick on my home here in West Bibb County, Georgia. One local vendor appears to have me in mind. This firm is advertising New Brick.
While I did not take the time to view all the sample walls this one impressed me the most. Admittedly it looks a lot like the current brick on my home, but it would be new brick. Although I have yet to replace the countertops in my home I am concerned that the current bricks on the exterior may be near the end of their shelf life. The home I reside in was build in 1991 and I do not desire to have the brick go bad. As you can tell I am concerned about the exterior of my home. After all who wants the winds, the rains and the snow to penetrate the siding?

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Happy Mother's Day 2009

There will be many phone calls today to "Honor Mother's." Even our Military Services realize the importance of "Mom's" or "Mother's of Service Members." All of that stated to simply point out that a most vital component of a Military Family is the Spouse who is left behind with children and responsibilities when one is Deployed.
I am confident that all Branches of our Services realize this important fact, but today I will high light a "Navy Spouse of the Year."

" Date Line: May 7, 2009. Master Chief Petty Officer of the Navy (MCPON) Rick West speaks with Christy Huriantnyk and her children, before the 2009 Military Spouse of the Year Awards Luncheon at the Ronald Regan Building and International Trade Center. Huriatnyk is the wife of Lt. Cmdr. Kuriatnyk stationed at Gulfport Naval Construction Battalion Center, Ellersile, Ga. and is the Navy Spouse of the Year. The Military Spouse of the Year award is presented annually to an individual who embodies the best characteristics of today's military spouse. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Jennifer A. Villalovos/Released)"

I, the Flower Child, take this opportunity to Thank all Mom's of Service Men and Service Women everwhere. The spouses of all Military Service Men and Service Women certainly deserve our appreciation and gratitude.
Have a Happy Mother's Day.

Saturday, May 09, 2009

Fun in the Sun Safety Fest
Sandy Beach Park
Lake Tobesofkee

Today the Flower Child attended the 2009 Fun in the Sun Safety Fest which is put on by Bibb County Sheriff's Office. Because he was acting out the Flower Child had to serve some time. Other Safety Organizations participating were:

Houston County Sheriff's Office
Jones County Sheriff's Office
Monroe County Sheriff's Office
Georgia State Patrol Aviation Division
Macon Police Department
Warner robins Police Department
Middle Georgia REACT
Mid Georgia Ambulance
Macon-Bibb County Fire Department
Bibb County Juvenile Authority

Everyone knows that in order to have excellent participation you need to have good food. The food service at this event was outstanding.

This organization provided the grilling. The Hot Dogs and Hamburgers were very tasty.

As I departed the Festival I noted this vehicle. The Twiggs County Sheriff's Department was not listed on the Program however this vehicle was their to remind us all to never speed on I-16 through Twiggs County, Georgia.

Friday, May 08, 2009

Apostle Plant
An Exciting Bloom in The
Flower Child's World

Several years ago a Garden Club Friend gave us this delightful plant. We have always grown it for the interesting foliage which looks very much like an Iris Plant. This year after wintering it over in the garage I placed one six inch pot of this plant on the front stoop which receives plenty of Sun shine in the Spring Months. Today I was checking out the front gardens and noted that this plant was in bloom.
This is certainly an interesting bloom to view. The plant is also known by other names which include:

Neomarica gracilis
Walking Iris
Twelve Apostles
The rewards of sharing plants with friends and neighbors is always exciting. At this time I am looking forward to the Night Blooming Cereus to burst forth in bloom. We have two of these large leafy plants which display a lovely bloom for one night only.

Thursday, May 07, 2009

The Right Place at The Right Time

Yesterday I was concluding a photo assignment as a member of the Middle Georgia Camera Club. We often do in-club competitions to show our peers our work. At a recent meeting everyone was given the opportunity to draw an assignment out of the hat. I was fortunate to draw a "Wild Card" subject so I have been engaged in taking pictures of steeples in Macon.
As I was concluding my downtown photo shoot I was able to view the sky turning dark for an impending rain storm. I was traveling up Walnut Street and I saw this view. The bright white of the steeple against the sky. I stopped on Bond Street and acquired this image. The key to obtaining great scenic photographs is often being at the right place at the right time.

Wednesday, May 06, 2009

The Rains Came
Today was an excellent day to do intense gardening here in Middle Georgia. I cleaned up the Ivy Bed on the side of the drive way. The weather was so nice that I mowed all the weeds and still had time to proceed to the ACE Store to acquire fertilizer. I chose 33-3-3 with all the trace elements. The real grass has been fighting the weeds so I figured that a strong fertilizer with lots of nitrogen would give the grass a real boost. I applied it as directed and read the after application directions. It clearly stated to water well after the fertilizer is applied. I was hoping that the evening rains would resolve the watering issue. About 6:00 P.M. this evening we had plenty of rain so the directions have been complied with.
With the high nitrogen content I suspect that I will be mowing the lush growth in a few days. But with a name like "Flower Child" I simply must have the best looking lawn possible. Enjoy the weather.

Tuesday, May 05, 2009

The Mentors Project of Bibb County
I was fortunate enough to receive an invitation to the 2009 Achievement Banquet held this evening. The purpose of this event was to recognize twenty High School Seniors who have been involved in the mentors project and are also graduating from high school. Additionally underclass students were recognized for their academic achievements.
The Mentors Project Board President summed up best in his closing remarks. Exposure is Education. He challenged all mentors to expose their assigned students to things that they are not able to visit or attend. He gave an example from his own personal life. Several years ago he took a young female out on a date to a rather nice eating establishment and told her to order anything that struck her fancy. Not being exposed to fine dining she promptly ordered Chicken.
The Executive Director for the mentors project is Ms. June O'Neal. There are many fine young males and young females in Middle School and/or High School who are looking for mentors. If you or anyone you know would be interested in mentoring a Bibb County Student please contact Ms. O'Neal at (478) 765-8624.

Monday, May 04, 2009

A Hero
A United States Citizen

(May 1, 2009) Explosive Ordnance Disposal Technician 2nd Class Tyler J. Trahan, 22, from East Freetown, Mass., died April 30 during combat operations in Fallujah, Iraq. Trahan was assigned to Explosive Ordnance Disposal Unit 12 based in Norfolk, Va., and was deployed as part of a Navy SEAL team. (U.S. Navy photo)
I post this as "The Flower Child" and want to encourage everyone to keep these Heroes and Their Families in you Daily Prayers.
We all have heard the saying that "Freedom is Not Free." This young Man and many Heroes before him certainly bear out this fact.

Sunday, May 03, 2009

Hydrangea Report
Middle Georgia - May 3, 2009

Everyone knows that I orginated and post to this Blog as "The Flower Child." The 2009 Hydrangea Blooms are just beginning to flourish. The picture above is of a lace cap Hydrangea which flourishes on the North Side of our Home here in West Bibb County, Georgia.

Several years ago I planted three "Oak Leaf" Hydrangeas. The resident Deer population eliminated two of them, but this plant survived. As you can see the Blooms are just beginning.

The Hydrangea Plant that I am most proud of is this one. It is a Climbing Hydrangea. This plant is not supposed to grow here in Middle Georgia. This one is on the North Side of our Home and grows up the chimney. Again, as you can ascertain, the flower pedals are just starting their display. You can be confident that I will publish updated pictures here as all of these Hydrangea Blooms reach maturity.

Enjoy the Day and the Beauty that abounds in our Nature.