Saturday, February 27, 2010

Where are the Carriers?
Ask any Sailor who has ever served on a United States Navy Aircraft Carrier about who is tasked with a rapid response to situations that happen anywhere on our Planet. Usually the first question asked by those in Command at the Highest Levels is: "Where are the Carriers."
Recently the USS Carl Vinson, an aircraft carrier, was in a unique situation when the Earthquake hit Haiti. On February 26, 2010 the USS Carl Vinson was in Rio. She is in the process of changing her homeport to the West Coast, which means she will soon be traveling around the bottom tip of South America. I suspect that she and her great crew will be tasked to assist with any U. S. relief efforts to aid the peoples of Chile which suffered a massive Earthquake this morning.
"Where Are The Carriers?" Every citizen of this great country and each and every Sailor in our U. S. Navy can certainly stand tall with great pride as once again our Nation is Ready to Serve and Assist wherever needed.

Friday, February 26, 2010

Flower Child's Flower

As I walk about the Gardens at my West Bibb County Georgia Home I often view blooms that demand to be photographed. This one called out to me yesterday, February 24, 2010. Even these cold weather flowers are about one month behind schedule this year.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

"The Crazies"
A Movie filmed in Middle Georgia
Lenox, Iowa
The Flower Child attended the Macon, Georgia preview showing of the movie "The Crazies," which was filmed in Middle Georgia in early 2009. Some of the Movie was also filmed in Iowa.
It was an interesting movie and contained a lot of shooting. I participated in this movie as an extra at the Truck Stop filming and I was able to see myself two times.

Monday, February 22, 2010

macon film festival

February 18-21, 2010
Saturday evening, February 20, 2010 My Bride and I participated in the Fifth Annual Film Festival. This was our first time attending this event, but we had heard such great comments about this festival that we checked it out.
We attended the showings at the Douglas Theatre from 4:00 P.M. until the last film at the Douglas was complete.
We enjoyed the opportunity and also learned a lot. We watched two Documentary submissions which were entitled:
Theatre of the Mind
Carving Up the Oconee
After each presentation there was time for interaction with the creators of the film. A very rewarding experience and also an excellent opportunity to meet the creators. The "Theatre of the Mind" film was produced by two students from Georgia Southern University. They certainly are a credit to their school as well as themselves.
The highpoint of the evening was the viewing of the Narrative Short entitled "You Are Beautiful" which was shot over a period of five days in the City of Savannah, Georgia. A fun film with a valid lesson to be learned by all viewers.
In summary, a most enjoyable evening. You can be confident that the Flower and His Bride will be attending in 2011.
The organizers of this event can certainly be very proud of their accomplishments. Thank You!!!

Friday, February 19, 2010

Life In The United States of America

Little Alan (a.k.a.) The Flower Child 1940

Life in the United States of America is simply great. Today I went to Kroger's right here in Macon, Georgia to acquire a bottle of Wine to help me celebrate a major milestone birthday. The Flower Child is 70 years old today.
As I checked out using one of the automatic machines I was informed that I had to show my Identification Card to the Cashier. Here I am seventy years old and I got "carded" today. It certainly makes you feel younger. Nothing could be better. I proudly showed the Cashier my Identification Card and smiled and recalled how great this country is. I feel younger now because of this experience.
I must relate that I have always looked young for my age, but the last time I was carded was when I was twenty-eight years old.
Only in America!!!! Life is Good!!!

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

A Milestone for the Flower Child

It had to happen. As I commence the count down to my Birthday the United Parcel Trucks are just beginning to deliver gifts. The first one was from one of my Charming Sisters in the Holy Land (a.k.a. Iowa). Although I have no regrets regarding my upcoming Birthday, I will be the first to admit that I must learn to slow down a bit. My Sister certainly hit the nail on the head. I suspect that the number of suckers is also 70.
It will be interesting what other gifts and/or cards are in the postal service system. Meanwhile I will also await additional deliveries by the United Parcel Service.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

The Lutheran Church of the Holy Trinity
Macon, Georgia
Valentine's Day Fellowship

The picture above shows a few of the 22 Red Velvet Cupcakes. I made these using the Duncan Hines Moist Mix.
The Flower Child signed up to provide the food for the Fellowship after Church Services on Sunday, February 14, 2010. I decided that for Valentine's Day I would do Cupcakes. Here are
a few of the 24 Chocolate Cupcakes.

This is a part of the presentation which I set up for the Food Fellowship at Church. Note the heart shaped gum drops on the top of each Cupcake.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

French Toast Day 2010
Yesterday, February 12th our youngest Son who lives in Saint Louis Missouri called to ascertain if we were ready for "French Toast Day." Of course he monitors the weather in Macon, Georgia where his parents reside and he wanted to make sure that we were ready for the anticipated snow storm. He also informed us of the meaning of French Toast Day. You acquire milk, bread and eggs before any anticipated snow storm. As everyone knows these are the main ingredients for making French Toast Day.
This morning, my Bride decided that we should observe our Valentine's Day Breakfast in conjunction with French Toast Day. We would have more time today to enjoy a lovely breakfast, which we did.

This is but one view from our home here in West Bibb County showing the sun shining through the trees on French Toast Day 2010.
A second view. Here you can observe the snow and ice on the tree branches. This picture was taken from the front steps.

This is a view of the Breakfast Room Table as it was set up for the combined breakfast. You will note the hearts on the coffee cups as well as the snow on the ground.

In as much as we no longer have employment we watch a lot of cooking shows. You will note here the presentation of the French Toast. Please note that the Silver Flatware that was used is the service for twelve that we acquired during our recent trip to the Holy Land. The Silver Flatware Chest and complete service for twelve was acquired for the sum of $29.00 at the Turkey River Mall in Elkader, Iowa.

A wonderful French Toast Day is now complete. The Flower Child enjoyed this meal and is now ready to watch the Opening Ceremony of the 2010 Winter Olympics.
Wishing You All A Great Day!!!

Thursday, February 11, 2010

The Flower Child's Love Nest
Should you ever call our home and we are busy or on another line you will receive a voice mail that indicates that you have reached the Love Nest. Here are a few shots of what this room looks like.

Tuesday, February 09, 2010

Gate Way Park Flooding 2010

Cherry Blossom Festival Preview

This Blog Post features the Gate Way Park in Macon, Georgia. The abundance of Winter rains has caused the Ocmulgee River to be at or above flood stage for the most of 2010 thus far.

Here you can see the top rail of the Bandstand which is under water. Out in the river the water is moving quite fast. I took these pictures during the 8 o'clock hour this morning. An overcast morning that changed to rain.

I just had to capture these Cherry Blossoms this morning. They looked quite nice for this being the 9th day of February.

Of course I had to also get a close up shot. This one was taken with a flash so that the background is dark.

No visit to Gate Way Park is complete without taking time to reflect on the greatness of Otis Redding.

Saturday, February 06, 2010

2010 Southeastern Flower Show
4-6 February - Atlanta, Georgia

In addition to the shrubs and flowers which are in abundance at the Southeastern Flower Show you can also learn about gardening to grow items that you will enjoy to eat. This example of a raised bed impressed me.

This grouping of flowers caught my eye. I could not resist taking a photograph. One of the benefits of attending the Annual Southeastern Flower Show is that it is in Winter and you have an opportunity to view beauty in a bleak time of the year.

Several displays featured fountains set up in gardens which were designed and constructed by several Atlanta area Garden/Landscape Firms.

I found this area garden to certainly showcase the beauty of a garden even though the blooms are not in season at the same time.

A Photography Contest is a part of each Southeastern Flower Show. In recent years it has become a juried contest. I submitted eight images and one was selected. Here you are viewing the Flower Child along side of the Winning Entry in the "Flower" Section. It is a Night Blooming Cereus that I entered. For this show the entries must be framed and under glass. The photos are all for sale as a fund raiser. This image has already been sold twice. Which means I will have to have another print made and also a frame. I am grateful that My Bride was with me as we visited the Flower Show so that she could take this picture.

Wednesday, February 03, 2010

The Lutheran Church of the Holy Trinity
Macon, Georgia
Remembering the Dedication of the Organ

This Holtkamp Pipe Organ was dedicated on Sunday, February 7, 1965. This Sunday, February 7, 2010 will mark the 45th Anniversary of this magnificant instrument. You are certainly welcome to attend the Sunday Morning Worship at 11:00 A.M. Sunday, February 7, 2010.
This instrument is used every Sunday so if you cannot attend this Sunday, please plan to do so in the near future.
God's Blessings To You!!!

Mercer University School of Medicine
28 January 2010 - I realize that I am late with this Blog Entry. The students at this Medical School conducted their Third Annual Talent Show. Prior to the show the medical students conducted a "Fund Raiser" for the citizens of Haiti. They made homemade desserts which were evaluated by their peers as well as those who attended the Talent Show. In order to vote you had to purchase a ticket. You were then allowed to sample each desserts and exercise your vote by placing your ticket in the appropriate container by the dessert you considered the best.
I do not know how much money was gathered, but I do know that the desserts were grand, as well as the performances of the Medical Students who participated in this event. The entertainment ranged from vocals, guiter solos to sit-down comedy.
What did I learn from attendance at this event? I can certainly tell you that soon there will be Doctors who are skilled in more than one craft. Of course, I suspect that this has always been the case. I was impressed and I will place the 2011 Mercer Medical School Talent Show on my schedule.

Advertising in Macon, Georgia

A new sign is now in operation in Macon, Georgia.

Monday, February 01, 2010

Mediocre Performance
Public Education in Bibb County Georgia
Recent Media Coverage has achieved the level than many citizens in Bibb County Georgia have desired for years. Public Education in Bibb County has not lived up to the citizens expectations for decades.
Work With Me, Please.
I have memories of the era when one of my Children attended Miller Middle School. This was in the 1980s. At the time my family lived a few hundred feet from Rosa Taylor Elementary School in Macon, Georgia. When it came time for Middle School at the former A.L. Miller Building we decided riding the School Bus would be an appropriate means of transportation for our child. Often he would come home from school and relate how the Bus Driver would proceed out Forsyth Road and then realize that a mistake had been made and would then turn around and proceed back toward Macon and the Miller Middle School.
I spoke to the Director of Transportation and/or his Secretary frequently and was always informed that they would resolve the problem. I even discussed the situation with the Principal of Miller Middle School who acknowledged that the Children riding a certain bus were frequently late for School, but it was a problem that he could not resolve. Please bear in mind that at this time I was the "Ways and Means" Chairperson for the Parents Group at Miller and we conducted a major fund raiser so it was not like I was a non caring parent who only griped when the system picked on my kid.
Needless to say this situation went on for months and my frustration with the system increased until one morning in December I stopped by the Bibb County Court House to discuss the situation with the Chairman of the Bibb County Commission. You will recall that way back then the School Board had to have approval for the Operating Budget by the Board of Commissioners. I was there early in as much as I got off of work at 7:00 A.M. Once the Chairman arrived I indicated that I needed to discuss a situation concerning the Bibb County School System.The late Mr. Emory Green listened with great interest and assured me that he would indeed resolve the issue. Within three days the situation was resolved and the driver of the school bus for my child knew how to travel from the area of Rosa Taylor Elementary School to Miller Middle School without having to turn around in the vicinity of the Dairy Queen on Forsyth Road. A new driver was hired.
I relate this story now to simply indicate that mediocre performance has been accepted for so long in the Bibb School System that most citizens who have a concern about their Children have already resolved the problems of the past by using other School options here in Middle Georgia. These options have included private school or simply moving out of Bibb County. Of course Home Schooling has also become popular.
Yes, this is a sorry situation that has been allowed to grow for far too many years. I point this out so also let my peers know that this mediocre performance has become a way of life within our School System here in Bibb County Georgia. The situation has endured for so long that the current culture is to continue to accept mediocre performance.
I appreciate the current media emphasis on Public Education in Bibb County, but please be aware that mediocre performance is not a new development. So what can be done to improve the situation? There are those who are calling for Ms. Patterson to resign. I would submit that this may not be the answer. Until a level of proficiency and caring is the watch word throughout the system, no one person can improve the current situation. What about the level of concern about improving our education in Bibb County by other members of the Central Office Management?
I would submit that some on the current school board are also responsible. We have members on the School Board who do not even desire to hear from the citizens who fund their activities. They do not desire to hear from "We The People."
You can be sure that I will post a comment to this Blog Post regarding those who desire to not receive concerns from a Citizen of Bibb County.
You may recall that until recently the School Board had to submit their budget to the County Commissioners for approval. I as well as other concerned citizens made this a campaign issue a few years ago when seats on the Board of Commissioners were up for election.
We now have a School Board that is allowed to set their own tax rate, which is as it should be. We now have the option of replacing the school board if things are not proper instead of having to replace the Board of Commissioners and the School Board. That is but one of the concerns I had when I ran for the Board of Commissioners in the recent past.
As we proceed forward I would encourage all the citizens of Bibb County to become involved in monitoring the activities of our Duly Elected School Board Members. After all they are the ones who set policy and determine the focus of education in our County.
We certainly deserve better than what we have received over the past thirty or maybe even forty years. Our current crisis is not a recent development. The situation has been festering for a long, long time.
The crisis can best be resolved when all are aware that Mediocre Performance will no longer be acceptable.

Wesleyan Drive At Rivoli Drive

West Bibb County Georgia

Railroad Crossing

Although this rough railroad crossing appears to be a temporary problem until new rail track is laid it would appear to me that the crossing could be smoother. While I am not an engineer and have not been formally educated as the proper method to lay asphalt I to think that a smoother temporary fix could have been achieved.

Check it our for yourself.

Tucker Road at Rivoli Drive

West Bibb County

Railroad Crossing

Recent letters on the Viewpoints Page of The Telegraph discussed this Railroad Crossing. I decided to conduct an investigation as to the extent of this rough Railroad Crossing.