Category Archives: House


The images from the folder 11-1-08 are all over the place. They include pictures of Jesse and I exploring the disc golf course in McHose Park to pictures of Shannon before she made a donation to Locks of Love to pictures of my Hoosier before it got fixed up to pictures Halloween in 2008.

I’m not a frolfer, but I do think that McHose Park has a badass disc golf course. The first 9 holes are nothing special, but the back 9 is a man’s golf course. When I say man’s golf course, what I really mean is that it isn’t for the faint of heart. It is for people that aren’t afraid to get lost in the woods and never heard from again.

The Hoosier pictures were taken from before Shannon’s dad came to pick it up. It was in storage and he did a wonderful job making it presentable again and he did it in plenty of time before I found a house to call home. Which was quite the feat, even though I did take my own sweet time with my house hunt.

The pictures of Shannon before she cut off her hair were taken in Brookside Park. This was Shannon’s 3rd donation to Locks of Love. In that collection of pictures is one of my favorite pictures of Shannon and I believe it is safe to say that I have taken lots of pictures of Shannon.

Finally, the 2008 Halloween pictures includes a picture of Willy in what was definitely the best Halloween costume he has ever had.

Have a look:

Halloween - 2008

Halloween - 2008

Halloween - 2008

Halloween - 2008

Halloween - 2008

Halloween - 2008

The Hoosier

The Hoosier

The Hoosier

The Hoosier

Shannon Before Locks of Love

Shannon Before Locks of Love

Shannon Before Locks of Love

Shannon Before Locks of Love

Shannon Before Locks of Love

Shannon Before Locks of Love

Shannon Before Locks of Love

Shannon Before Locks of Love

Shannon Before Locks of Love

Disc Golf

Disc Golf

Disc Golf

Disc Golf

Disc Golf

Disc Golf

Disc Golf

Disc Golf

Disc Golf

Disc Golf

Disc Golf

Disc Golf

Disc Golf

The stick figure pumpkin is the best pumpkin I have ever carved. Jay hated it. I’m not bitter about that, otherwise I wouldn’t be bringing it up over 10 years later.

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:

McHose Park Mystery

All Hallow’s Eve


Another Before

Next Saturday’s walk down memory lane will involve another trip to Ottumwa and what Shannon looked like after she cut off her 12 or so inches of hair.

10-28-08 & 10-30-08

I’m going to publish the pictures from 2 old timey folder today because they are both pretty small.

The pictures in the folder 10-28-08 are from a trip I took to Ottumwa with Sara. Jen inherited a house when her Uncle John passed away in Ottumwa. It was nice house as far as houses in Ottumwa go, but it needed lots of attention before it could go on the market.

Sara and I went there, I think to help, but on this trip to Ottumwa I’m not sure we did much helping.

The pictures from folder 10-30-08 were from the beginnings of my house hunt. It took me 3 months of looking at over 60 houses to find the house that is the current home of the Photography 139 Studio. The way I found my current house is both extremely nerdy and a bit of a God Moment, but that is a story for another journal entry on another day.

These house were the 2nd set of houses I looked at. I looked at 2 other houses on a different night, but those aren’t part of what I would consider my official “House Hunt” because I was mostly just tagging along with Teresa’s friend Rob on his house hunt.

Here are some pictures to look at:

Ottumwa House

Ottumwa House

Ottumwa House

Ottumwa House

Ottumwa House

Ottumwa House

Ottumwa House

Ottumwa House

The Great House Hunt

The Great House Hunt

The Great House Hunt

The Great House Hunt

The Great House Hunt

The Great House Hunt

The Great House Hunt

The Great House Hunt

The Great House Hunt

The Great House Hunt

The Great House Hunt

The Great House Hunt

The Great House Hunt

The Great House Hunt

The Great House Hunt

Fun Fact:

The tie that is in my hand in the mullet wig picture I wore in my Computer Mine Holiday Card photo because I felt it was very punk rock.

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:


House Search

The Ottumwa entry has a story about the time Derrick betrayed me… over a potato.

Next Saturday’s walk down memory lane will involve disc golf and long hair Shannon. But not at the same time.

Won’t Take that Credit; I know Where We Get It; Them Blessings Be Comin’ from God Above

Happy Thanksgiving everybody!

Rather than my standard picture of an inflatable turkey, thought (with apologies to Lecrae, I’d give thanks for some of the many blessings in my life.

Count it up, count it up, count it up.
Line ’em up, line ’em up, line ’em up.

Bennett 2017 Family Photo
Blessed with a tremendous biological family. Blessed to share DNA and a life with these people.

Blessed to be a part of Olivia’s family. Blessed to learn a new definition of the word “family” from Shorty and Doris.

Mission Trip  - Day 0
Blessed to be a part of an incredible church family. From Youth Group to Methodist Men to the people I see in the pews on Sundays.

Thanksgiving - 2017
Blessed to have a job and double blessed to have a great work family. 7 AM comes pretty early, but so many of the people I work with make the struggle worth the effort.

Blessed to share a life with this band of brothers. Not one of us has any fashion sense, but I’d still take a bullet for any of them.

Blessed to fit in with this band of sisters as well.

Movie Club
Blessed to be able to share my love of weird cinema with like minded individuals once a month.

October 28, 2017
Blessed to be a Cyclone and double blessed to have somebody to share so many trips to Jack Trice (a spiritual place for me) with.

Blessed to have a roof over my head that belongs to me. Blessed that I can extend that roof over friends and family when their life needs it. Blessed that when I say, “Want to help paint by house?” 20+ people show up.

Blessed that friends from past jobs are still important pillars of my current life.

The Howard Children
Blessed that people that aren’t related to me consider me an uncle to them.

August 15, 2017
Blessed to have a car that I can drive out of town and not worry about the tire falling off.

Blessed to have so many people in my life that when I say, “I’m coming to your city”, they say, “You’re staying with us right?”

Tenderloining at Nick's
Blessed to have so many people in my life that fill gaps.

Selfie Project - March 5
Blessed that even though I’m aged, I still healthy enough to still ball. Although pretty poorly these days.

Selfie Project - January 27
Blessed that even though I’m aged, I still have people in my life that keep me young.

Selfie Project - January 21
Blessed to have people in my life that want to change the world for the better, when I get cynical.

Selfie Project -January 14
Blessed to have art in my life.

May 25, 2017
Blessed to have a beautiful beard. Even if the old guys at my church hate it.

Blessed to have people who will help with projects like this, no questions asked.

Photo of the Day 0003 - May 5, 2014
Blessed to share a life and a domicile with this crazy beast. Teaches me about selfless love every single day.

June 28, 2017
Blessed to have a chance to spread my blessings to others, sometimes, with some of my favorite people.

This is just the tip of the iceberg of my blessings. But I don’t want it to start to sound like I’m bragging.

Fuzzy Cuteness

As I promised, after two days of having to look at disgusting Coca-Cola products, I would reward you with fuzzy cuteness. If I am nothing, I am a man of my word!

Baby Possum
Fuzzy Cuteness

A week or so back, I was in the backyard with my legendary hunting pooch Naima. We were in the process of putting away a tarp that I was drying out. As I picked up the tarp, Naima started going crazy. After I moved the tarp I uncovered one of her favorite toys. I naturally assumed this is what she wanted so badly. I pointed it out to her, but she ignored it and she kept barking.

I turned around to see what she was all jacked up about. Turns out having fallen out of the tarp was this cute little baby possum.

After snapping a few photos, I placed the tarp over him and let him be. Despite the advice of legendary outdoorsman and animal lover Micky Augustin to just hit it with a shovel and throw it in the garbage.

When Naima woke me up at 5:30 in the morning the next day (as is our custom), I went outside and removed the tarp. Baby Possum was gone. Having moved on to spread his fuzzy cuteness to the rest of the world.

I hope our paths can cross again and and if they do I’m sure he will give me a knowing glance that says, “Hey pal. Thanks for not hitting me in the head with a shovel and throwing me in the garbage. That was doing a brother a solid.”


ISO: 500
DATE: 06/09/2016 – 19:50
LATITUDE: 42.05525°
LONGITUDE: -93.87058°



Even though I can’t find a good glass of it in Kansas or Minnesota or anywhere else I may travel outside of Iowa, what do I always drink with my breakfast?



What decidedly Iowa food item do Scottie D. and I travel the backroads of the Cyclone State to eat, rate, and seek out the best of?

ANSWER: Tenderloin

I Further Celebrate Myself

This is mostly a rehash of the “Save the Date or Don’t” Post from last Saturday. A few updates. In italics.

Only a handful of you understand the photo I posted to start this post. But that is okay. You might understand in a few weeks, or you might just be even more confused.

Almost all the pieces are now in place and the Birthday Invitation Photo Shoot has been scheduled for this week. Now we’re playing with fire! I hope Torgo doesn’t lose his hand!

Here is the information that you need to know. My personal Edith Head, my personal staff man, my personal Torgo, my personal technology team, and my personal photographer are hard at work currently devising invitations for my birthday gala.

Edith Head is done. Experiments ran by the makeup team based on Edith Head’s suggestion have been deemed a success. The Staff Man has made tremendous progress. The staff (as far as I’ve seen it) is beautiful.

That is right! After a several year hiatus… it is back!

After consulting, friends, family, a gopher, a toreador, my personal astrologist, a numerologist, a phrenologist, Hoodie Club, Nature Squad, Friday Night Supper Club, and The Dawg Pound I have settled on a date for this event.

MAY 14

So this is sort of a “save the date” only, believe me, I would never be so presumptuous as to ask somebody to save a date. This would be more like a consider this date. Or don’t. I understand that you have to live your life and walk. I would expect nothing more and nothing less, from you my friend.

What can you expect at this event (besides my arrogance)?

My arrogance has only grown in the last week. Some woould say that it has grown unchecked.

Well, details are being hammered out.

However, there could be such fun activities as:

Food from an award winning barbecue team. I have signed one member of the award winning barbecue team Baby Got Rack to a contract. While that isn’t the whole team, the guy I signed is clearly the George Michael of the team. Trust me. I didn’t sign Andrew Ridgeley.
Food! From other sources. Like my Mom.
Keg beer! Of the root vintage.
Cornhole! No horseshoes.
A dog! (Naima has confirmed that she will make an appearance. Unless she gets a better offer.)
Music. Most of it clean! At least 63%. (That Master Playlist is currently over 1,000 songs. If you wish to suggest a song for the Master Playlist, I suggest that you suggest in the COMMENTS section.)
A Christopher D. Bennett trivia game. Winner to get a semi-fabulous prize. You better start trying to figure out my favorite band… now!
A tent! (I have confirmed it. I own a tent.)
Stimulating conversation! (My idea for guaranteeing this is to create a section of the yard where people can talk about vaping. If they leave that section of the yard, they cannot bore people with incessant talk about coils and formulas and amps and zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz!)
Other people! (Maybe. After people see the invitation, it just might be you and me. But if its the right you and the right me, that’s cool.) Well, one person has RSVPed sorta. So 2 of us will be there.
A photo booth! With props? (Work in progress. At best.)
A new firepit! (Probably a temporary new firepit.)
Sidewalk chalk! (I’ve priced it.)
A finely manicured lawn! (Spring-Green has applied the year’s first treatment. My lawn. It is the thing of daydreams.)
A bounce house. (I mean stranger things have happened.)
Convenient parking! (Unless more than 3 of you show up.)
Zero pressure to RSVP!

So keep your mailboxes peeled on your eyes for the invitation of what will surely be one of the biggest events at my house that month!

I wouldn’t start peeling them yet. The photo session hasn’t even commenced yet.

Not Love

Thought it would be a good time to share a picture of a flower from my backyard.

I don’t post too many photos of my backyard flowers because I don’t want people to get too jealous of my green thumb.


FOCAL LENGTH: 60mm (90mm – 35mm equivalency)
ISO: 400
DATE: 08/26/2015- 19:30
LATITUDE: 42° 3′ 18.6″
LONGITUDE: 93° 52′ 14.8″
ALTITUDE: 357.72 meters

Coming Soon…

Actually, not coming soon. They are already there.

Recently my sister Teresa came across a collection of theater seats at the Funky Rooster. She was able to negotiate a sweet deal and after borrowing a truck from the Petersons and getting Derrick to help load them and Willy to help unload them and place them in The Union Street Theater, they are home.

Here are a couple of cruddy cell phone pictures for you to admire my recent addition and commitment to consumerism.

Derrick strapping the seats in.

Willy and I testing them out.

Another view of the test.

This addition will seat four people or two straight males.

My understanding is that these seats came from the old Century Theater that was on Duff all those years ago.

I also recently added a computer to the Union Street Theater to make it easier to stream music or watch YouTube videos down there.

I’m not sure how many people can sit and watch movies at the Union Street Theater, but currently there are 4 theater seats, 2 recliners, 1 couch, a daybed, a trundle bed, and 1 bean bag chair. However, the couch will probably bite the dust at some point.

The Union Street Theater will start hosting more formal events in the future. Including:

-Probably at least 2 viewings of MANOS: HANDS OF FATE.
-A Network Engineering viewing of A CLOCKWORK ORANGE.
-A possible Youth Group event.
-A Nader birthday movie viewing.
-Another undetermined movie viewing.
-Many a Cyclone sporting event watch party.

I think I might be done tinkering with it for awhile, but I would have made that same claim a few weeks ago.

Painting Vol. III

Here are more painting pictures. YEAH!!! These are from my other sister Carla:

Jesse, trying to break my window. Jeff watches on.

Anders, painting away!

Anders and Ian painting away!

Melissa and Scottie D. painting the east side of the house.

Anna painting!

Teresa cutting some plastic as Willy and I hold it.

The north wall.

Alisa and Erica painting the front “porch”.

Jeff and Terrence painting.

Teresa painting.

Teresa painting.

Alisa and Erica painting the gate. Terrence supervises.

South wall.

I think Shannon is in there somewhere.

Note the excellent scallop work that Carla did!

The front porch.

Painting Vol. II

What lies below are a few pictures my sister Teresa took of the painting.

Yep. That is Jesse trying to break my front window.

More Jesse trying to break my window.

Another angle of Jesse trying to break my window.

There may be more action packed painting pictures coming your way in the future! Try to contain your excitement.


The great national nightmare, or maybe it was just my nightmare, is finally, virtually over. The 2 day house painting party this weekend is over and my house is painted!

Just a couple splashes of paint here and there, and hanging a few things up and it is over.

So thanks a million to my amazing Saturday Painting Crew:

  • Jesse
  • Teresa
  • Baier
  • Will
  • Ben
  • Monica
  • Jeff
  • Scottie D.
  • Melissa
  • Porter
  • Dalton
  • Anders
  • Ian
  • Mom
  • Shannon

Equally as great was my awesome Sunday Painting Crew:

  • Willy
  • Jesse
  • Derrick
  • Teresa
  • Carla
  • Jen
  • Evie
  • Layla
  • Jay
  • Kelly
  • Anna
  • Anthony
  • Alisa
  • Erica
  • Shannon
  • Jeff
  • Terrence
  • Mom

I’m in such good spirits that I’ll even thank the people that just stopped by to gawk:

  • Terry
  • Grandma
  • Sherrie
  • Steve
  • Andy (In fairness Andy would’ve helped if there were any work left to do).

Since I wasn’t able to photograph anything on Saturday on Sunday because I was covered with paint, at this time I don’t have any pictures of the actual painting to share. However, I do have some pictures of the aftermath. Some of the things might make you wonder about the cleanliness and skill level of my people. You should know that many of them are highly skilled painters: Derrick, Baier, Carla, and to my admitted shock Willy (to name a few), but everybody contributed on some level. Therefore, imperfections, spills, messes, I actually love these things. These are reminders that on one beautiful fall weekend 15 people on Saturday and 19 people on Sunday decided to come to my house and help me paint rather than do something that society may have considered more fun and more interesting. Society can go suck an egg!

I call it the house that love painted and that is even at least partially true. If nothing else, I have at least a healthy start to my Birthday Party Invite List. Don’t worry, there will be other chances to earn a coveted invite to The Party of 2016*. Not many granted, but I’m sure those chances will be out there.

Any way, here is a collection of photos of my Painting Party Aftermath:

A piece of tape leftover from where Alisa and Erica did a crackerjack job of painting the front porch!

An unintended sweet design left behind from Carla painting the house numbers!

Paint left behind from where my frog rain gauge sits. Possibly left from when Anna or Willy painted the rain spout? Actually that is probably my spill.

That cardinal even looks sweet on the brick.

Normally I would be sad if my beautiful, lush lawn looked so downtrodden and pathetic, (I pay good money for somebody else to fertilize it for me) but this is actually a sign of how many people were there painting my house at any given time. Can’t hate on that.

Cleaning out paint trays lead to this sweet white streak of grass.

The gold paint. The finishing touch that really adds some flair. Alisa and Erica also knocked it out of the park with this paint and my gate. Shannon also rocked the front threshold with this paint.

Another awesome aspect of this painting project was how much equipment I was loaned. One neighbor Stan loaned me 2 scaffoldings. The other neighbor Roger loaned me a ladder.

Stole the idea of using dish tubs to hold paint from my mission trip to South Dakota. Fortunately while painting cedar siding sucks, it doesn’t suck as bad as painting stucco.

More than a few people were infatuated with my house’s “nipple”. It is my kitchen vent. Don’t be weird, creeper. Either way, Anders and Ian did a dynamite job of painting it.

Just a few of the ladders that were used in the project. Not pictured is 1 of 2 family heirlooms used in during the project. A ladder my Grandpa Bennett bought in 1969 to paint the house at 415 Greene Street.

A few of the rollers that survived usage by Teresa the Roller Killer.

It took about 10 gallons of cardinal paint, 3 gallons of white paint, and 1 gallon of gold paint to complete this project.

Lots of experimental painting was done by me on this project. Some paint tools are excellent. Some are a waste of money. Such a waste of money.

On Saturday night I bought a gallon of gold paint and a whole set of paint brushes to use with the gold paint. When the time came around to use the gold paint, all those brushes, except one had been used for cardinal. This solo cup is an artifact left behind by Alisa and Erica from painting the gate gold.

Earlier this year I moved this wood pile from where it is pictured to the brick patio for use in the Firetub. I have had exactly zero social fire tub fires this year. Will and Ben moved the pile back to its original location. Very thankful I didn’t have to do that. Although since I am retiring the Firetub this fall, I should have one last social fire soon. What will become of the Firetub? Stay tuned. Same bat time. Same bat channel.

The other family heirloom that was used in this painting project. This step stool also belonged to Grandpa Bennett. When it isn’t being used in painting projects, it holds frog statues. It will no doubt be used when I complete Fall/Winter House Project #2 sometime soon-ish.

This was the Painting Party Cafeteria. Many a burger and dog were consumed here over stimulating conversation. Such as what do you do when you have to go to the bathroom on a 100 mile run? Loyal Instagram followers will recognize the chairs I stripped and painted John Deere colors and the plastic chairs I did a very poor job of painting Iowa State colors. The bench was built by Teresa. It normally is housed between the cherry trees and holds rain gauge no. 2 and more frog statues. Naima enjoyed her time in the cafeteria. Especially when Evie tried to bribe her with a hot dog to go on a walk.

This dog. She was in heaven with so many people around. She converted a couple of kids that were afraid of dogs and was a wonderful playmate for Layla and Evie as well. She even tried to help with the painting.

I set up the tent for its annual airing out and as a place for children to play. I think Jay might have been the one who played with it the most. Willy and Jesse helped set it up. It is always my pleasure helping people learn survival skills.

Naima’s tail got an extra shade of gold when she tried to help with the gate painting.

The best part of painting during the fall is that it doesn’t matter what happens to the flower that surround my buildings. I would have photographed the hosta that Melissa dumped (much to the chagrin of Scottie D.) quite a bit of white paint on, but we all know that hostas are weeds. So who cares what happens to them? Not this guy!

I did almost all the scraping myself. Let me tell you, scraping cedar siding is the worst. Here is just a small sampling of the piles of scraped paint chips that surround my house.

I think I had 5 paint trays going all at once on Sunday. Might have been 6.

So once again. Thanks to everybody that helped me with this project!

If you are wondering what the house actually looks like now, you might have to visit**. Or maybe that will be covered in a blog post in the future. I don’t know what the future holds.

*Actually, I can’t guarantee that the party will be that great***, but the invitations will be very amusing to at least 3, maybe 4 people.
**But don’t ring my doorbell, that freaks me out.
***Although the partial party playlist was endorsed by Anna and she knows about such things. I’m sure.