Tuesday, July 31, 2012

The Infinity Room

Welcome to the Infinity Room at The House on the Rock in Wisconsin!

7-29-12 (40) I guess the room is supposed to look like it goes on and on to infinity.  It gets a little spooky as you walk towards the far narrow end---you can feel the room moving!

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If there had been more time, I’d have sat on this bench contemplating the view:

7-29-12 (41) It gave me an eerie feeling to step close to the window to peer all the way down to the valley floor over 150 feet below:

7-29-12 (38) The view in the distance was great, however!  There was mist rising up from the tree-covered hills and some of the clouds were low and looked almost like smoke:

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This last photo was taken from the deck on top of the Infinity Room:

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More to come from The House on the Rock.

Monday, July 30, 2012

Barn Charm

This barn photo was taken by my husband on our road trip yesterday:

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He also caught a shot of this barn-shaped museum as we were speeding past tiny Froelich, Iowa, which is famous for being where John Froelich invented the gasoline-powered farm tractor in 1892.  It later became the world-famous and well-known John Deere tractor.   

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House on the Rock

Continuing on with yesterday’s trip to The House on the Rock in southwest Wisconsin…

This first photo shows a wall hanging in the visitors’ center.  On it is a view of the house which the tour does not include.  It shows that the house really is built on top of a rock!  Pictured also is Alex Jordan,  the one who envisioned, designed, and built this place.   

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After buying your ticket, you follow the walkway up to the house:

7-29-12 (31) The next photo shows the exterior of the walkway.  How else would you get to a house on a rock unless you are a rock climber!?

7-29-12 (98) From the walkway we could look down and see the Japanese Garden…

7-29-12 (30) …and another garden on the other side:

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It was quite dark inside the house and my photos from there didn’t turn out very well, but I did get pictures of the Infinity Room which I will show you tomorrow.  It is quite a place---unsupported from beneath and extends out from the main house above the wooded valley below.  You can see it in this final photo:

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Road Trip

Yesterday my husband and I escaped from the farm and from Iowa for a day.  Our destination was in Wisconsin and we had to travel a couple hours to get there.  For awhile my husband took his turn as passenger and photographer.  He took this shot as we were driving through Clermont, Iowa:

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It was a cloudy, rainy day---something we’ve been wishing for, but it didn’t provide the best lighting for photos.  We drove on and eventually through the river town of McGregor, Iowa:

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We soon reached the Mississippi River bridge at Marquette, Iowa:

7-29-12 (12) This next scene looks south from the bridge.  A casino boat is on the right:

7-29-12 (13) Further along on the bridge, the view to the south looked like this:


  After eating lunch in Prairie du Chien, Wisconsin, we crossed over the Wisconsin River…

7-29-12 (16) …and continued eastward through the rolling hills of southwest Wisconsin:

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More to come.  Stay tuned!

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Your Sunday Best

Wild Coneflowers in bloom with a few Blazing Stars mixed in…

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Weekly Top Shot

Here’s some Blazing Stars, with a few Coneflowers in the background…

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Friday, July 27, 2012

Anniversary Drive

Recently, our wedding anniversary rolled around for another year.  We took a drive that evening and I snapped photos along the way.  We didn’t get married in this church, but I did sing in a wedding there once:

July 22 (7) I like the look of motion in the soybean field in this next photo:

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And, here’s some oak trees I’ve always liked:

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We ended up at a Dairy Queen and ordered Blizzards---the perfect treat on a warm summer evening!

Thursday, July 26, 2012


Here’s a drive-by shot taken a few days ago along Interstate 74 in Illinois:

July 19, 2012 (46) SkyWatch icon

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Field of Dreams

On our way to Illinois, we stopped at the Field of Dreams movie site near Dyersville, Iowa:

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The famous cornfield is on the far left in this next photo:

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In this next picture, my daughter and niece are reenacting a scene from the movie:

July 19, 2012 (33) We browsed in the souvenir shop:

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I should watch the movie again sometime to reacquaint myself with the story.

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I do recall these lines:

Is this heaven? 

No, it’s Iowa.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Bloomington, Illinois

We weren’t able to spend any time in downtown Bloomington but did manage to get a few drive-by shots on our way to the David Davis Mansion.  

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Look closely at the above photo to see that this is the home town of a well-known insurance company.  Their theme song is playing in my head right now…Like a good neighbor, State Farm is there.July 20, 2012 (15)Bloomington is also home to the McLean County Museum of History.  It is located in a former courthouse building which dates to the early 1900’s.  I’d like to go back and tour there someday.  This county is one in which Abraham Lincoln worked as a circuit-riding lawyer.

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Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Normal Downtown

While in Illinois, we (my daughters, my sister, my niece, and I) spent some time in downtown Normal.  I wish I lived there just so I could say, “I must get back to Normal”, and it would have nothing to do with being normal!

There were plenty of photo opportunities, including this movie theater :

July 20, 2012 (1) We ate at this restaurant:

July 20, 2012 (6) We browsed in this cute colorful shop:

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Typically “normal” for a college town, there were murals and other artwork all over the place:

July 19, 2012 (86) We browsed in this book store, where I could easily have spent the whole day:

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On the right in the next photo is the Uptown Station where my daughter boarded a train for Chicago one weekend this summer during her stay here in Normal.  I would love to live close to such a thing!  Just go downtown and catch a train to somewhere exciting.  That would be fun, I think. 

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Finally, here’s a sign we saw in another part of town:

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Monday, July 23, 2012

Barn Charm

This is the barn on the grounds of the David Davis Mansion in Bloomington, Illinois.  I was there last week.July 20, 2012 (27) Visit Bluff Area Daily to find this week’s Barn Charm.

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David Davis Mansion

While in Illinois for the Shakespeare Festival, we also visited the David Davis Mansion in Bloomington.  Click the link to read about its history, which includes Abraham Lincoln, not surprising for this area of Illinois.

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Completed in 1872, the mansion’s architect was the same one who designed the Iowa and Illinois state capitols.

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We took a guided tour inside, but photography was not allowed there.  The rooms and furnishings were interesting and beautiful.  The house was quite modern for its day.

I couldn’t resist giving this next shot a Photoshop makeover: 

July 20, 2012 (28)2 ink outline David Davis’ wife Sarah had a flower garden near the mansion.  Sarah’s quote to her sister brought tears to my eyes.  I’m sure life was more difficult back then: 

July 20, 2012 (26) There were lots of colorful zinnias in the garden:

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On the mansion grounds, Civil War reenactors were setting up tents for an event to be held the next day:

July 20, 2012 (17) You can see more tents in this final photo:

July 20, 2012 (20) If you ever are in Bloomington, Illinois, take time to visit the David Davis Mansion.  Click the link to find tour information.