Thursday, March 31, 2016

S.T.R.E.A.M. Night at Keystone Oaks Middle School

Day 88/366

Science, Technology, Reading, Arts and Mathematics were all showcased by our Middle School students and how all these are integrated in the curriculum.  We have visitors from Phipps Conservatory, Alcosan, Society of Women Engineers and Bayer, just to name a few.  Artwork on was on display, serious games of Kahoot were happening in room 210, 3-D printing were just a few of the activities you could see this evening.

This is a classmate of Daniel's, Shyann with the roller coaster that her and her team built in their Tech Ed class.  It was a wonderful evening for the school, the district and our outstanding students!

The art of teaching is the art of assisting discovery.
 ~Mark Van Doren

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

In The Circle......


Today was the first track meet for the KO Middle School.  What an exciting time and so much to photograph!  Daniel's four events are Shot Put, Discus, 800M and Mile.  God bless him because he does not get the running bug from his parents!  He hit 17'9" for his best shot distance and 53' for this first discus.  Waiting on times for his mile and 800 meter.

I must confess that my favorite event to shoot was high jump. Capturing those kids in mid-air, the expressions on their faces, simply priceless.  Long jump was awesome too and I think I will get more of that next week when we have our next home meet.

A big congrats goes out to Daniel's friend and fellow Scout Chris Wolfe, who won both shot and discus today with amazing distances of 31'10"(shot) and 83'(disc).  Great job Chris!

Throwers don't have finish lines.....

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

My Favorite Spring Scent


Nothing reminds me more of Spring then the smell of a Hyacinth.   It's the one thing I love getting on Easter morning and this year, I will plant the bulbs if it kills me!  I want to have those beautiful flowers in my garden next year!

If I had but two loaves of bread, I would sell one and buy hyacinths, for they would feed my soul.

Monday, March 28, 2016

The Bench - March


Stole a few moments on this chilly and windy March day to get my bench shot for the month.  March seems to have come in like a lamb and out like a lion.  However, regardless of the weather, the bench speaks it's words of wisdom yet again.

No act of kindness is ever wasted.

Sunday, March 27, 2016

Oh, Give Me A Home.......


Where the buffalo Pittsburgh?  I have lived here for 10 years and I had no idea there was a game reserve in South Park.  The bison have been in South Park for 85 years and currently the herd is seven males, seven females plus two male calves that were born in 2013.

It took a bit of walking and driving to find the bison but eventually we did,  Double fences were a bit annoying but when I got high enough up the hill, I was able to get a decent shot of the herd.

I know I will be back again as I am sure they will offer more photo ops!

The strength of the herd is the bison.
The strength of the bison is the herd.

Saturday, March 26, 2016

Holy Saturday


Holy Saturday is the final day of Lent, of Holy Week and of the Easter Triduum.  This is the day that Christians commemorate the Death and Passion of Jesus Christ and prepare for His resurrection.

In stillness Earth awaits the resurrection.

Friday, March 25, 2016

Good Friday...Italian Style


I generally do not photograph food but after the day I had, sometimes you have to shoot what it's front of you.

At least it was a tasty dinner!

People who love to eat are always the best people.
~Julia Child

Thursday, March 24, 2016

Take Me Out To The Ball Game!


Not just me but 450 of my closest KO friends!  On April 17th, 2016, section 302 of PNC Park will be filled with KO friends and family as we  watch our Golden Eagle Marching Band perform the National Anthem during the Pirates pre-game show.

Who's ready to come over and help me assign and stuff all these tickets?

It is well to remember that a Martian observing his first baseball game would be quite correct in concluding that the last two words of the National Anthem are: PLAY BALL
~Herbert H, Paper

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Reflective Moments......


Decompression was much needed this evening.  A beautiful evening for a 3 mile walk and then home to catch the sun set reflection on the roof of my car.

Some days it truly is the simple things in life......

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Machine Gun Millie


Sometimes you just don't know what will happen at a Boy Scout meeting.  Tonight, the boys got a surprise as one of our assistant Scout Master's, who is also one of Pittsburgh's finest, had the S.W.A.T. Truck pay us a visit.

Another unexpected happening was how excited Millie was about the truck and the weapons!  Like a kid in a candy store and was I having fun capturing the moments.  More importantly was the fun had when it came to editing of at least one of those photos for today's blog post!

You just never know what will come of a photo I take.....

Monday, March 21, 2016

Snowy Spring


Our first full day of Spring and we awoke to below freezing temps, car windows that needed to be scraped and a bit more than a dusting of snow on the ground.

The heaviness of the snow challenged the daffodils in my garden but by the time I got home, they were upright and bright.  Tough little buggers!

Goodbye Winter, so long snow.  It's time to watch the flowers grow.

Sunday, March 20, 2016

Nature in Black and White

Day 77/366

Before my friend Lois challenged me to do a Nature Photo A Day for a week, I had gone out in my yard to try to find something to shoot.  My neighbors have this tall grass growing along the property line and I was loving the texture of it.

It was flurrying and I was hoping to catch some gentle flakes on the grass, but not such luck.  The B/W does make for a nice variation.

Nature does not hurry, yet everything is accomplished.

Saturday, March 19, 2016

Friday, March 18, 2016

All That Remains


After a very tough and long week, the beauty of the day turns into night and its time to rest.
The body is an amazing machine that knows exactly what it needs and when.  If we listen to it, it will treat us well and last us a lifetime.

Time for sleep......ZZZZzzzzzzzzzz.

Take rest; The field that has rested gives a bountiful crop.

Thursday, March 17, 2016

Sun Shower.....


Driving up to Montour this evening to get more Girl Scout Cookies (because 50 cases was just not enough) the weather was just wicked and the cloud formations stunning.  It's a good thing I did not have my big camera with me because I might not have made it home till after dark.

It started to rain with the sun still shining and I just had to find a spot on Forest Grove Rd. to pull over for a quick cell shot.

Oh the joys of crazy weather in the Spring!

Sunshine and rain make beautiful things......

Wednesday, March 16, 2016

First Bloom


Took a nice 3.2 mile walk and came home to find my first bloom in the garden.  What a beautiful day today and I was so glad I got out to enjoy some it,  Thank you Daylight Savings!!

Daffodils come before the swallows dare, and take the winds of March with beauty.

Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Court of Honor


Quarterly, Troop we celebrates the achievements of it's Scouts.  Recognized at the Court of Honor are all rank advancements and Merit Badges earned.  Tonight we had the honor to recognize four Scouts in rank advancements, Scout, Second Class and two Scouts earned the rank of Life.  We had double that number earn multiple Merit Badges.

It was a proud night for Troop 23 and I was a very proud parent watching Daniel earn both his Second Class rank and three Merit Badges, Genealogy, Game Design and Oceanography.

Scouting rises in you and inspires you to put forth your best.

Monday, March 14, 2016

His Mecca


Dick's Sporting Goods.  Tonight was our annual trek to Dick's to upgrade all necessary baseball equipment for the new season.  We added in track shoes as well as tomorrow starts track practice for the middle school and Daniel is looking to add the 400 and 800 to his sporting repertoire.  

Gift cards and coupons in hand, we made our way through the various departments to find just the right deals.  Daniel came home a very happy camper and I think the new shoes will end up on Instagram tonight...especially the New Balance cleats with gold accents and spikes.  It's funny the things that make a 13yo smile!

It never gets easier, you just get better.

Sunday, March 13, 2016

It Pays To Be A Winner


What an interesting evening.  I was asked to come take some shots of the Keystone Oaks High School baseball team as they trained with Stonewall Solutions.  Stonewall Solutions provides Athletic Team building activities and it was pretty awesome to watch.  Both of the instructors are former Navy Seals and one of them was also a D1 baseball player.  Watching the boys work together and create that mental attitude so that they thrive in adversity and crush the competition.

More pictures to come and I do hope by the time my son is on the KO team, this is a yearly activity for the team.

Preparation creates trust.  Trust creates confidence.  Confidence creates aggressive 
fundamental action.

Saturday, March 12, 2016

Birthday Buddy


This is Kimper Ann, the beautiful daughter of my friend Courtney.  We met Courtney through Cub Scouts and although our Scouts have gone different ways, we have remained friends.

Kimper was born on my birthday and today I finally got to meet my birthday buddy!  What a cutie she is and I am going to have fun spoiling her on our special day!

So good to finally meet her and see you again Courtney!  Next time, let's not take so long!

Babies are such a nice way to start people
~Don Herald

Friday, March 11, 2016

Walk In The Park


I have been finding the best way to decompress after a long day is a nice brisk walk in the park.  Now that Daniel is going out for the track team at his school, he is trying to improve his distance running, while I get my 3+ miles in.

As we were driving out, this was our view and I looked at him and him and me and we both knew it was the shot for the day!

I never met a sunset I did not like....

Thursday, March 10, 2016

The Long Way Home.....


Leaving late meant nothing.  Almost 35 mins in traffic due to the nasty rain. Some days it feel like the road will never end.

Sometimes you have to go a long way around the houses to come home.

Wednesday, March 9, 2016

In A Galaxy Far, Far Away.....


Some days, camera time is almost non-existent.  The next thing you know, 10 emails, 5 texts and 2 calls later you realize it's almost time for bed and the blog post is not done.

Time to hit the creativity button and play.

Two of my favorites are iColorama and Alien Sky.  It would be nice to be floating in space, just enjoying the view of Earth.

For here
Am I sitting in a tin can
Far above the world
Planet Earth is blue
And there's nothing I can do

~David Bowie

Tuesday, March 8, 2016

The Best Dressed Band.......


The new uniforms are in and the Keystone Oaks Golden Eagle Marching Band is going to look simply fabulous in Center Field at PNC Park next month!

Instrumentalist, Liz Staab, was our beautiful model this evening as we all got to see the new uniforms in person.  Only thing missing were the gauntlets and cap but we will save that for April 17th!

You know you are a band nerd when you define people by the instrument they play.

Monday, March 7, 2016

Good Day Sunshine.....


This week is going to be our first real taste of Spting.  66F today and mid 70's before the week is out!  For a Monday, it started off beautifully!

I need to laugh
And when the sun is out
I've got something I can laugh about
~Paul McCartney 

Sunday, March 6, 2016

Spring Training.......


Watched my first few Spring Training games today.  Makes me smile to see baseball on TV again and I got to watch the Cubs losing!

There are only two seasons, Winter and baseball.
~Bill Veek

Saturday, March 5, 2016



Our friends own the Wood Street Bread Company. Their daughter Alex has been a Girl Scout with my daughter since we started Scouts in 2008.

One of our favorite Girl Scout trips was a visit to their bread store where the Scouts got to see bread being made and then they got to make some of their own. 

Today, while hosting our Scrapbooking fundraiser, Alex's mom dropped off the leftovers from their market day. Needless to say, we were all thrilled. 

Sometimes, it's not what goes into the making of the bread but how it's made.  

Friday, March 4, 2016

Spring Snow

Day 61/366

Woke up to a Winter Wonderland. Big fluffy flakes dressing my garden in a beautiful gown of white. 

No Winter lasts forever. No Spring skips it's turn. 

Thursday, March 3, 2016

Cold and Broken


Some days, this is just how it feels.

You don't ever have to feel guilty about removing toxic people from your life.  It doesn't matter whether someone is a relative, romantic interest, employer, childhood friend or a new acquaintance-You do not have to make room for people who cause you pain or make you feel small.  It's one thing if a person owns up to their behavior and makes an effort to change.  But if a person disregards your feelings, ignores your boundaries, and "continues" to treat you in a harmful way, they need to go.
~Danielle Koepke

Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Time For Homework


Tonight was Social Studies homework with Daniel.  The different plans that were offered up to run our country.  The New Jersey Plan, the Virginia Plan, the Great Compromise, just to name a few. Daniel also needs to memorize the preamble to the Constitution,  I think those words need to be read by everyone, especially those in the current political arena.

We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

What Is It?

Day 58/366

Some days you get stuck in your office and the only time you see daylight is during the traffic-filled drive home.  Not the best time to be taking pictures.

Second car ride of the day involved parking lot lights and raindrops on the windshield, which formed an interesting patter on my son's arm.

Someday, you go with what you got!