Category Archives: Mom

Selfie Project – February

Seems like a good time to check in with the progress on THE SELFIE PROJECT.

I don’t think that February was my best work. Apparently I need to get out more and see more people because it seems like I didn’t leave my house much in February from these pictures.

But looks can be deceiving. Nothing deceiving about that bear though.


February 1, 2019
February 1

February 3, 2019
February 3

February 5, 2019
February 5

February 6, 2019
February 6

February 7, 2019
February 7

February 8, 2019
February 8

February 10, 2019
February 10

February 13, 2019
February 13

February 15, 2019
February 15

February 18, 2019
February 18

February 20, 2019
February 20

February 21, 2019
February 21

February 24, 2019
February 24

February 25, 2019
February 25

February 26, 2019
February 26

February 27, 2019
February 27

February 28, 2019
February 28

I’ll try to be more interesting in March.

10-13-08

There is quite the collection of images in the folder called 10-13-08. I can’t possibly include all of them in this here entry, so I’ll just have to pick out a few that I like the most.

The pictures range from Gyro Day at the Computer Mine to the Ames Party Bus in action to a road trip to Kalona with Mom, Teresa, and Jay.

Have a looksie:


Gyro Day - 2008

Gyro Day - 2008

FNSC

Ames Party Bus

Ames Party Bus

Ames Party Bus

Ames Party Bus

Ames Party Bus

Ames Party Bus

Ames Party Bus

Ames Party Bus

Kalona Road Trip - 2008

Kalona Road Trip - 2008

Kalona Road Trip - 2008

Kalona Road Trip - 2008

Kalona Road Trip - 2008

Kalona Road Trip - 2008

Kalona Road Trip - 2008

Kalona Road Trip - 2008

Kalona Road Trip - 2008

Kalona Road Trip - 2008

Kalona Road Trip - 2008

Kalona Road Trip - 2008

Kalona Road Trip - 2008

Kalona Road Trip - 2008

Kalona Road Trip - 2008

Kalona Road Trip - 2008

Kalona Road Trip - 2008

Kalona Road Trip - 2008

Kalona Road Trip - 2008

Kalona Road Trip - 2008

Kalona Road Trip - 2008

Kalona Road Trip - 2008

Kalona Road Trip - 2008

Kalona Road Trip - 2008

Kalona Road Trip - 2008

Kalona Road Trip - 2008

Kalona Road Trip - 2008

Kalona Road Trip - 2008

Kalona Road Trip - 2008

Kalona Road Trip - 2008

Kalona Road Trip - 2008

Kalona Road Trip - 2008

Kalona Road Trip - 2008

Kalona Road Trip - 2008

Kalona Road Trip - 2008

Kalona Road Trip - 2008

Kalona Road Trip - 2008

Kalona Road Trip - 2008

Kalona Road Trip - 2008

While I’m not 100% sure, I believe that is the last of my Ames Party Bus pictures. Which means I should explain why you haven’t seen Becky driving around the Ames Party Bus in 10 years.

I might not be getting the details 100% correct, but the spirit of what I’m writing is dead on.

Shortly after Becky finished restored the Ames Party Bus and began putting out an APB on fun, Big Party Bus felt threatened. In fact they were scared. Petrified.

Big Party Bus checked their address book to look up which state representatives they had in their back pockets. Then they went to these bought politicians and pulled their chains.

The bought politicians reacted by passing a law that made party buses carry an exorbitant amount of insurance. Like an incredible amount of insurance. Insurance that was price-prohibitive.

This effectively shutdown the small-time party bus. Becky was out of business, shortly after the party had begun. Rich people win again.

By adding these pictures to the Photography 139 Gallery, I was able to restore the following historic “An Artist’s Notebook” entries to their original glory:

Spoiled

Euphonious

Kalona (Part 1)

Kalona (Part 2)

Next week’s walk down memory lane will involve an Iowa State football match with the Bugeaters of Nebraska.

The Proverbial Swan Song

While I was preparing to write this entry I went down a rabbit hole on the origins of the term “swan song”.

I have heard the term many times, but never really understood what it meant. Apparently there is a belief dating back to ancient Greece that swans stay mostly mute for their life and then right before they die, they sing a beautiful song.

There is still a fair amount of debate on whether or not swans do in fact sing a beautiful song before they die. I would like to think it is true since swans are among the most beautiful of birds. They certainly are the most beautiful bird that you can see in Iowa, in the wild.

The term isn’t always morbid. Is has come to be synonymous with doing something great right before you retire.

I don’t know if this post 100% qualifies, but it is about a form of retirement for me.

For the last couple of years I have done some pro bono photography (although I once was paid in homemade treats for Naima) for the Boone Area Humane Society. The last time I did photography for them was when I covered their annual Pet Memorial Day Celebration.

Due to the shifting sands of the power structure of the Boone Area Humane Society, I have a feeling that I won’t be asked to do any photography for them in the coming years. But that is a story for a different time.

Here are some pictures from that event:


Pet Memorial Day - 2018

Pet Memorial Day - 2018

Pet Memorial Day - 2018

Pet Memorial Day - 2018

Pet Memorial Day - 2018

Pet Memorial Day - 2018

Pet Memorial Day - 2018

Pet Memorial Day - 2018

Pet Memorial Day - 2018

Pet Memorial Day - 2018

Pet Memorial Day - 2018

Pet Memorial Day - 2018

Pet Memorial Day - 2018

Pet Memorial Day - 2018

Pet Memorial Day - 2018

Pet Memorial Day - 2018

Pet Memorial Day - 2018

Kio ran the event. Pastor Doug gave a speech and lead us in prayer. It was a cool event. I hope it continues to happen in the future, but the way things stand currently, I have my doubts.

Another loss that people in one of my communities are experiencing is that we learned that we will be losing Pastor Doug and his amazing wife Jodie near the end of June. It is a good deal for Doug because he is getting a big fatty promotion. He will be the District Superintendent of the Southeast District. He will be posting up in Mount Pleasant.

For our church, it kinda sucks. Doug is a great Pastor and Jodie is possibly an even better Pastor’s wife. Losing both of them will leave a hole in our church that the next person or persons will have quite a time filling.

The new Pastor will also be like the 80th Pastor we have had in the last 5 years. Now that is probably hyperbole, but search your feelings, you know it to be true.

There is a common misconception that somewhere in The Bible it says “God won’t give you more than you can handle.” It is a common phrase that is trotted out as a reassurance when people are going through difficult times or grief.

The truth is that this isn’t in The Bible. Sorry, but sometimes that light at the end of the tunnel is a train.

That being said, I would like to give the common response to the phrase, “God won’t give you more than you can handle.”

I wish God didn’t know we were so strong*.

The good news is that while God doesn’t say anything about giving us more than we can handle, God does say that we won’t be tempted beyond our limits:

“No temptation has seized you except what is common to man. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can stand up under it.” (1 Corinthians 10:13)

Therefore, I hope my church will not be tempted to feel sorry for itself. I hope my church won’t feel tempted to cling to the past. I hope my church won’t be tempted to resist the future.

A new Pastor is coming. While they will be the 80th Pastor in the last 5 years, I have faith that we will get a good one. We are in a good position and while we aren’t exactly a “destination” denomination, we are in a relatively good place and we have some powerful people looking out for our interests.

Playing the numbers game, we’ve really only had one bad Pastor in the last 15 years. While they were a really, really, really, really, really bad Pastor (I mean the guy sermonized at least once a month about past congregants he had smited and that is just the tip of the iceberg), we aren’t due for another like him for at least 30 years. Those are my calculations at least.

While I’m sad to be losing such great people, I am optimistic about the future and what a new Pastor will bring to our church and what our church will bring to a new Pastor!

There is light at the end of the tunnel and at this time, I don’t hear a train.

*On a personal note, this phrase has always bothered me.

Candlelight Service

I have been working on something the last few days that nobody at all will care about, but I think is somewhat of an accomplishment:

I have added a SSL Certificate to my website and now my website is secure.

I know, you don’t care. Even my fellow miners at the Computer Mine aren’t impressed. That is okay. I live with only impressing myself on many a day.

What does it mean for you? Probably, absolutely nothing. But when you look up in the address bar of this here website, you will see a little lock so that you know your information is private when you send it to this site.


It is a beautiful lock. The most beautiful I’ve ever seen!

+++++++

The webmaster at my church requested that I take some pictures of the Candlelight Services on Christmas Eve. So I took a few pictures. Have a looksie:


Candlelight Service - 2018

Candlelight Service - 2018

Candlelight Service - 2018

Candlelight Service - 2018

Candlelight Service - 2018

Candlelight Service - 2018

Candlelight Service - 2018

Candlelight Service - 2018

Candlelight Service - 2018

Candlelight Service - 2018

Candlelight Service - 2018

Candlelight Service - 2018

Candlelight Service - 2018

Candlelight Service - 2018

Candlelight Service - 2018

Candlelight Service - 2018

Candlelight Service - 2018

Candlelight Service - 2018

Candlelight Service - 2018

The room with the trees is where we take communion on Christmas Eve.

+++++++

Here is an update on my 10 Step Process to buying a drone.

  1. Car paid off. – I got the pink slip daddy!
  2. Training Budget Reimbursement – Bought about 10 books and signed up for an online portrait photography class that I will discuss someday.
  3. Purchase Popcorn Maker – The Union Street theater has procured its very own popcorn maker from Flat Earth Joe. The one that was borrowed from Andy’s friend of a friend has been returned.
  4. Computer Upgrade – I have completed upgrades on my home computer. I’ve put in a solid state drive to run the OS and the applications, I upped the RAM to 16 GB and I replaced the video card with a video card with twice the ram and that is capable of running 3 monitors.
  5. Figure out the effect of the Iowa GOP Tax Scam – The Iowa GOP Tax Scam will indeed result in me paying more taxes. There is about a $7 effect on my paycheck, meaning I am getting a tax cut of roughly $200. (Assuming the withholding from my paycheck is being done right.) However, since the Iowa GOP Tax Scam made it so a 6% sales tax is levied on all online purchases, I will be taxed well more than the $200 benefit. For example, I’ll pay over $100 in taxes on purchasing the drone that I wouldn’t have had to pay before the Iowa GOP Tax Scam became law. 
  6. Rear Brakes – I had the rear brakes replaced on my car last night. It costs me about 40% of what I was expecting Win!
  7. Computer Mine Bonus – Whether or not we get a profit sharing bonus should be determined in the next week or so.
  8. Bank Fraud Resolution – This is supposed to be resolved by January 31. I have my doubts. All indications are that my bank wants me to find a new bank. Perhaps a credit union. Perhaps I should talk to Nate’s friend.
  9. Federal GOP Tax Scam – I want to see if the Federal GOP Tax Scam will hurt my refund or not. I do not anticipate it will, but I don’t want a February surprise to hit the drone budget. 
  10. Change Jar – I want fill and return my change jar to the bank before I pull the trigger on the drone purchase. I think I have about 2-3 inches of coin to collect. This isn’t really a necessity, I just want to do it.

6 out of 10 completed. What isn’t mentioned in the 10 part plan is that I won a $250 gift card to Amazon at the Computer Mine Holiday Party.  That is a bonus 11th step. 

Post #3252 – 2018 Year in Review

Happy New Year to people who celebrate such things.

I like to look at some meaningless statistics every 250 posts and I also look at fairly meaningless year end statistics.

Just so happens that I get to combine them today!!

Here is both a year in review and a celebration that I have made it to 3252 blog posts. I was on the Alamo Bowl Road Trip visiting submarines, cults, and reality television stars when post #3250 came around, so I hope you can excuse the tardiness.

The first thing I want to look at are the most popular CATEGORIES in the history of “An Artist’s Notebook”.

Top 10 Journal Entry Categories

1. Portrait – 527
2. Weekly Photo Challenge – 504
3. Flowers – 497
4. Animals – 405
5. Jesse – 361
6. Photography – 355
7. Shannon – 320
8. Teresa – 296
9. Black & White – 291
10. Carla – 280

Top 10 People Categories

1. Jesse – 361
2. Shannon – 320
3. Teresa – 296
4. Carla – 280
5. Jay – 279
6. Mom – 277
7. Derrick – 256
8. Willy – 227
9. Vest – 221
10. Jen – 209

Top 10 Not-People Categories

1. Portrait – 527
2. Weekly Photo Challenge – 504
3. Flowers – 497
4. Animals – 405
5. Photography – 355
6. Black & White – 291
7. Road Trip – 262
8. Personal Photo Project – 261
9. Life – 234
10. Nature – 215

“Photography” and “Life” are general categories that I have been working on eliminating as I go back and restore historical “An Artist’s Notebook” entries to their original glory. Hopefully they will have both dropped off the Top 10 Lists by journal entry #3500.

If you are wondering how to become a Top 10 person on this list. The easiest way is to submit to the Weekly Photo Challenge. After that, the best way is to volunteer to model and photo assist for photography projects. Then after that, I would suggest going on road trips with me or attending Iowa State athletic events with me or going on road trips to Iowa State athletic events with me.

The people that are right outside of the Top 10 are:: Sara, Kim, Dawn, Becky, and Nader.

If you are looking for a goal for 2019, you could do worse than trying to crack the Photography 139 Top Ten People Category List. You obviously could do way, way, way, way, way, way, way better too.

Now we will turn out eye towards 2018.

Top 10 Most Popular Photography 139 Galleries of 2018 by Views

1. 9 EMOTIONS PROJECT – 48,722
2. WEEKLY PHOTO CHALLENGE YEAR 5 – 37,614
3. WEEKLY PHOTO CHALLENGE YEAR 5 – ALTERNATES – 33,622
4. 2008 – JANUARY – JUNE – 26,032
5. SELFIE PROJECT – 2017 – 23,141
6. HOUSTON MISSION TRIP – 2018 – 22,046
7. SOUTH DAKOTA TRIP – 2017 – 21,868
8. BOONE COUNTY FAIR CONTEST NOMINEES – 2018 – 17,211
9. SAYDIE HOWARD – CLASS OF 2017 – 14,808
10. IOWA STATE CYCLONES FOOTBALL – 2018

The 10 Most Popular Photography 139 Images by Views


Selfie Project - January 27
1. 2524

01-01-08
2. 2386


3. 2327

Kentucky Vacation - 2008
4. 1958

No. 45
5. 1621

No. 43
6. 1456

No. 12
7. 1445

July 15, 2017
8. 1321

WEEK 110 - REFLECTION - CHRISTOPHER D. BENNETT
9. 1293

No. 38
10. 1241

On the Instagram, these were my 9 Most Popular Photos based on Likes:


My theme for my 2018 Instagram posts was Black & White. My theme for 2019 will be HDR Toning. Also, I will be bringing back THE SELFIE PROJECT to Instagram in 2019.

You can follow me on Instagram here:

@christopherdbennett

I entered 3 photo contests with the following results:


Boone County Fair - 2018
Red Ribbon – Boone County Fair

Boone County Fair - 2018
Purple Ribbon – Boone County Fair

Boone County Fair - 2018
Blue Ribbon – Boone County Fair

Boone County Fair - 2018
Blue Ribbon – Boone County Fair

Boone County Fair - 2018
Blue Ribbon – Boone County Fair

Iowa State Fair Entry - 2018
Selected for Display – Iowa State Fair

Iowa State Fair Entry - 2018
Not Selected for Display – Iowa State Fair

Iowa State Fair Entry - 2018
Selected for Display – Iowa State Fair

Iowa State Fair Entry - 2018
Not Selected for Display – Iowa State Fair

Pufferbilly Days Photo Contest - 2018
1st Place Photoshop – Pufferbilly Days

Pufferbilly Days Photo Contest - 2018
1st Place Photojournalism – Pufferbilly Days

Pufferbilly Days Photo Contest - 2018
Pufferbilly Days

Pufferbilly Days Photo Contest - 2018
3rd Place Hidden Treasures of Boone County – Pufferbilly Days

Pufferbilly Days Photo Contest - 2018
Pufferbilly Days

Pufferbilly Days Photo Contest - 2018
Pufferbilly Days

Last note:

My goal for 2019 is the same as it was in 2018:

I’m gonna step my game up and get what is coming to me.

Good luck in 2019 everybody!

09-21-08

The images in the folder 09-21-08 run the gamut.

There are pictures from Steve’s garden, pictures of my Aunt Linda, pictures of Brandon from his Senior Pictures Photo Shoot, and a picture of the table that became my kitchen table, eventually.


09-21-08

09-21-08

09-21-08

09-21-08

09-21-08

09-21-08

09-21-08

09-21-08

09-21-08

09-21-08

Majors Family Reunion - 2008

Majors Family Reunion - 2008

Majors Family Reunion - 2008

Frog

Frog

Frog

Frog

Frog

Frog

The group pictures are from a Majors Family Reunion. Those don’t happen any longer. Although I can’t say that I particularly enjoyed going to them, I can say that I am kind of sad that they are gone. I guess I am part of the problem.

By adding these images to the Photography 139 Gallery, I was able to add the following historic “An Artist’s Notebook” entries to their original glory:

Dear, Beloved, Precious

Senior Pictures

Majors Family Reunion

Next weekends walk down memory lane will involve Little White Lye Soap and it will also involve Alexis.

Word

A couple months back I was cruising back from Big Creek and I saw an interesting bird sitting on a fence.

I pulled over and snapped a few photos.

Have a looksie:


Bird

Bird

Bird

Bird

Hopefully next Friday I’ll be back on track with THE PHOTO JOURNAL PROJECT. I guess we’ll see.

+++++++

This is your reminder that the WEEKLY PHOTO CHALLENGE theme this week is FAMILY:


WEEK 169 - FAMILY
FAMILY


A FAMILY photo is a photo of a FAMILY or anything that is related to a FAMILY. Don’t let anybody else’s limited definition of FAMILY constrain you!

Happy photo harvesting!

That’s Life

If you’re not in the parade, you watch the parade. That’s life.
-Mike Ditka

Last Thursday was the annual lighted parade in Boone. I’m sure it has a proper name, but I don’t know what it is.

As a member of the Outreach Committee, I was part of the team that put together the “float” for the lighted parade. Unfortunately, we didn’t garner very many volunteers and I had to call a couple people last minuted just to borderline half fill our “people carrier”.

Although most people would not consider it a failure, I sorta do. That is okay. We learn more from our failures than we do from our successes. That means at the 2019 lighted parade, we will be back with a vengeance!

Here are some pictures from the event:


Boone Lighted Parade - 2018

Boone Lighted Parade - 2018

Boone Lighted Parade - 2018

Boone Lighted Parade - 2018

Boone Lighted Parade - 2018

Boone Lighted Parade - 2018

Boone Lighted Parade - 2018

Boone Lighted Parade - 2018

Boone Lighted Parade - 2018

Boone Lighted Parade - 2018

Boone Lighted Parade - 2018

Boone Lighted Parade - 2018

Boone Lighted Parade - 2018

Santa was infatuated with my beard. He really wanted me to join the Santa union or something. Told me I could make $100 an hour as a “real beard Santa”. Maybe sometime, but I’m not ready for the Santa gig yet.

WEEKLY PHOTO CHALLENGE – WEEK 168 – COMMUNICATION

Looks like another rough week for THE WEEKLY PHOTO CHALLENGE. Only a few people were able to communicate the theme COMMUNICATION. Might be time to look into retiring THE WEEKLY PHOTO CHALLENGE.

But you didn’t come here to listen to me talk all tommyrot about participation rates. You came to see the submissions!


WEEK 168 - COMMUNICATION - TAMARA PETERSON
Tamara Peterson

WEEK 168 - COMMUNICATION - KIM BARKER
Kim Barker

WEEK 168 - COMMUNICATION - TAMARA PETERSON
Tamara Peterson

WEEK 168 - COMMUNICATION - CHRISTOPHER D. BENNETT
Christopher D. Bennett

WEEK 168 - COMMUNICATION - SHANNON BARDOLE-FOLEY
Shannon Bardole-Foley

But enough dwelling on the past. Time to look to the future. We are all interested in the future, for that is where you and I are going to spend the rest of our lives. And remember my friend, future events such as these will affect you in the future! This week’s theme:


WEEK 169 - FAMILY
FAMILY!


FAMILY! What a great theme! Unless your FAMILY sucks, then you have more problems that dealing with THE WEEKLY PHOTO CHALLENGE.

So what is a FAMILY picture? A FAMILY picture is any picture that involves a FAMILY. Now some people have a really strict DNA based definition of a family because they weren’t hugged enough as a child. Don’t feel constrained by somebody else’s definition of a FAMILY.

I look forward to seeing your interpretations!

HOUSEKEEPING

A MESSAGE FROM THE PHOTOGRAPHY 139 RULES DIVISION

1. The picture has to be taken the week of the theme. This isn’t a curate your pictures challenge. This is a get your butt off the couch (my personal experience) and put your camera in your hands challenge. Don’t send me a picture of you next to the Eiffel Tower, when I know you were in Iowa all week. I will point out that I have let that slide some in the past. I will not in the future. Since it is literally about the only rule.

2. Your submission needs to be emailed to bennett@photography139.com by 11 AM on the Monday of the challenge due date. It should be pointed out that this blog auto-publishes at 12:01 on Mondays. So it wouldn’t hurt to get your picture in earlier.

That is it, them’s the rules.

A MESSAGE FROM THE PHOTOGRAPHY 139 SHAMELESS SELF-PROMOTION DIVISION

Nobody showed class, taste, and sophistication this week by signing up for a Photography 139 email subscription. I’ll try and do better next week.

+++++++

That’s all I got for today, so if the good Lord’s willin’ and the creek don’t rise, we will commune right here again next Monday. Hopefully it will be a very familial Monday.

08-19-08

The pictures in the folder called 08-19-08 are from a trip to the Iowa State Fair.

Here are a few of them:


Iowa State Fair - 2008

Iowa State Fair - 2008

Iowa State Fair - 2008

Iowa State Fair - 2008

Iowa State Fair - 2008

Iowa State Fair - 2008

Iowa State Fair - 2008

Iowa State Fair - 2008

Iowa State Fair - 2008

Iowa State Fair - 2008

Iowa State Fair - 2008

Iowa State Fair - 2008

Iowa State Fair - 2008

Iowa State Fair - 2008

Iowa State Fair - 2008

Iowa State Fair - 2008

Iowa State Fair - 2008

Iowa State Fair - 2008

Iowa State Fair - 2008

Iowa State Fair - 2008

Iowa State Fair - 2008

Iowa State Fair - 2008

Iowa State Fair - 2008

Iowa State Fair - 2008

Iowa State Fair - 2008

Iowa State Fair - 2008

Iowa State Fair - 2008

Iowa State Fair - 2008

Iowa State Fair - 2008

Iowa State Fair - 2008

Iowa State Fair - 2008

Iowa State Fair - 2008

Iowa State Fair - 2008

Iowa State Fair - 2008

Iowa State Fair - 2008

Iowa State Fair - 2008

Iowa State Fair - 2008

Iowa State Fair - 2008

Iowa State Fair - 2008

Iowa State Fair - 2008

Iowa State Fair - 2008

Iowa State Fair - 2008

There are many more pictures than this from my 2008 trip to the Iowa State Fair. You can check them out by clicking on the link below:

2008 – Iowa State Fair

By adding these pictures to the Photography 139 Gallery, I was able to restore the following historic “An Artist’s Notebook” blog to their original glory:

State Fair Flowers

State Fair Olla Podrida

Next Saturday’s walk down memory lane will involve Jen and Derrick’s wedding.