My hope is to become better at keeping this blog up to date and be present here more often. In recent years I know I have gotten bad at that. I need to write more about what I am doing and I apologize that I have let that all go to the way side. But I am working on updating my webpage and hopefully I will have some new content here for everyone soon, too! I am currently on vacation with my family, but maybe a new blog about making cyanotypes will be soon to appear. Until then, look back at some of my older content.
Come one Come all! This weekend John Milleker, Michelle Barkdoll, and I will be at the Civil War Reenactment at the Living History Museum in Westminister demonstrating Wet Plate Collodion Photography. In the past we’ve gone to the reenactment to photograph the happenings (and I admit, my digital and film camera may be in attendance, to get a few pictures this year also). Love watching the battle they do in the afternoon and walk around an talk to the reenactors. It’s great fun and I encourage anyone who would consider it to come out!
One year ago, on April 17, I embarked on an adventure into Washington, DC. I had my camera in hand as I rode the Metro into the city, destination: The National Mall. It was an amazing site when I got there. People were lining the roof tops of federal buildings. The National Mall was filled with people in business suites. Not just tourists come to see the sites of the Nation’s Capital. Everyone was watching the sky, watching for the Space Shuttle Discovery to arrive from the Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Florida.
This was the second most memorable NASA event for me, the most memorable being 2 trips and almost 5 days down to Cape Canaveral the previous year to see Endeavour’s final flight to space, but that is a different story. (See my previous posts for more details 1,2,3,4,5,6,7) Discovery, or at least what was left of her after NASA gutted her out for display in a museum, was arriving to her final resting spot, the James S. McDonnell Space Hangar at the Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center of the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum in Chantilly, Virginia. The NASA 747 that carried her up the East Coast and to DC circled the National Mall several times before landing at Dulles National Airport, very near the Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center. On April 19 there was a ceremony April 19, where Discovery was put nose-to-nose with Enterprise, the previously displayed shuttle at the Smithsonian, who was getting ready for her trip to the Intrepid Sea, Air and Space Museum in New York City, New York. Alas, I didn’t make it down to Virginia that day, but it was a site to see! I watched from home, all the news stations were showing at least some of it. My hope is that the shuttle program is soon replaced by other space craft that can take us back to the moon, then on to Mars, and then beyond.
Here is the Smithsonian’s video about the arrival of Discovery:
This Spring I had the honor of discovering an new local attraction that I never new existed. A friend heard about a Dam and Azalea Garden near Columbia, Maryland and we decided to check it out. I have to say that it is a beautiful area and the Dam itself offers a nice habitat for geese and some other wild life to enjoy. Fishermen can go there, although I do want to put out the reminder that this is an area shared by other people and other species, so please clean up after yourself and don’t leave fishing lines out where it can harm other wild life!
First we saw the beautiful picnic area down by the dam and then we went and walked around the Azalea Garden, which has Azaleas in many different colors and several different sizes. It was fun to walk around, get some fresh air, and see and photograph these beautiful flowers and the local wildlife. Definitely keeping this place in mind for next year to visit again!
Of note, there are also beautiful Dogwood trees in the Azalea Garden. There is fun to be had here by people of all ages and even the family pet can go and have fun. There is picnic tables, and even a pavilion for special events.
Living near Baltimore there are many places I try to visit at least every couple of years. As I have friends and family come visit who don’t live in the area, I make it to some of these sites more often then when they aren’t here visiting. It is very easy to take for granted the sites in DC, Baltimore, and Annapolis, let alone all the other areas near by. My last visit to the Baltimore Aquarium was this past April, and it made me want to make it there to visit more often.
When I went there was still an official Dolphin show taking place several times a day, and I hear now that is not the case, but visitors can still go watch the trainers interact with the dolphins and can pay extra to spend a day assisting the trainers/or become trainers for the day.
There are many fish and exhibits to be seen that can teach young and old alike about our oceans and water ways. There are even special exhibits that occur sometimes. When I went there was a special Jelly Fish Exhibit to capture the visitors imaginations. The fish are beautiful and there is lots to learn along the way. The aquarium has activities for children and lots of information that is fun for the adult visitors, too. I’d recommend a trip to the National Aquarium in Baltimore to anyone who is contemplating it!