This afternoon, my mom, my puggles, and I visited Centennial Lakes Park in Edina, Minnesota. These photos were taken from 3:13–4:10 p.m.
For my third outing leaf peeping this year, I visited Excelsior, Minnesota, with my mom and our two puggles. I took these photos today from 11:42 a.m.–12:11 p.m.
Sometime within the last week, I bought flags for my mom, my dad, and myself. I did this because I wanted a family photo on the Fourth of July, since I realized there weren’t any photos of my dad on this blog.
I almost forgot about my photo opportunity this evening, but luckily remembered just as my dad was about to go upstairs to his bedroom. When my dad came outside this evening for the family photo, I told him where I wanted the photo—by a tree—but he started yelling loudly at me and saying he can’t go down that far in our yard.
My dad is in a walker and likes to stay at home in the kitchen, presumably because it’s hard for him to get around. (With that said, he always liked spending most of his time in the kitchen even when he wasn’t in a walker, which basically amounts to all my life.)
Back to the story, he said he needed to be in front of my mom’s flower garden. But not only that, he insisted that he rotate his walker such that a compost bin and his old SUV in our garage are my background. Yet my parents got to have flowers as their background. When I asked if we could rotate ourselves a different way—so that the compost bin and his old SUV in our garage are not by me—my dad started crying loudly. Interestingly, he stopped crying immediately after I let him get his way.
Indeed, I acquiesced, since I wanted a photo with the flags on the Fourth of July. The photo below, which was taken by me with my smartphone, is probably the one where the compost bin and garage show up the least (my head is blocking most of it).
My dad’s T-shirt reads, “RUNNING THE COUNTRY IS LIKE RIDING A BIKE,” which is apparently a reference to President Biden falling off his bike. Most of my dad’s shirts have a political message.
In other news, I’m eight months sober. No alcohol, no nicotine, no drugs. Also, a hard pass for Delta-9 THC, which became legal in Minnesota on July 1. If everyone else in my family followed suit, many of our problems would dissipate. #NQTD
Note: The backward flag was unintentional (at least on my part).
UPDATE, 07/04/2022: Since I’m not one to end a holiday (or any day, really) on a bad note, here is a photograph of the grand finale of Chanhassen’s fireworks display at Lake Ann. I stood across the street from Paisley Park to get this photo. It’s where I was last year as well.
UPDATE, 07/05/2022: I took a portrait of just my dad this morning. Now I have recent portraits of my mom, dad, grandpa, and grandma. Although I recently visited my grandparents’ house, my dad stayed home. This portrait was taken in the same place as the photo with the flags from yesterday evening. The lighting is harsh and could have been ameliorated by using fill flash, but I currently do not have a flash for my Canon camera. It probably wouldn’t be a bad idea to get one.
UPDATE, 07/08/2022: While watching “The Ingraham Angle” on Fox News (with Raymond Arroyo filling in), I discovered my dad’s shirt is a reference to a video taken by a reporter named Nikki Schwab.
Today, my mom and I drove to see my grandparents in Fergus Falls, Minnesota. I had not seen them in person since the pandemic started, though my mom had. It was nice to see them, since it seemed like it had been so long. The temperature was mild, it was sunny, and there was no noticeable wind, which were all perfect for hanging out in their backyard during the start of the Fourth of July weekend.
Today, my mom and I checked out the 40,000 blooming tulips and completed the Three-Mile Walk at the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum in Chaska, Minnesota.
Today, my mom, puggles, and I made it to Carver Park Reserve Off-Leash Dog Park (that’s a mouthful) in Victoria, Minnesota. This dog park is actually the only dog park we knew about after getting Pugsley, and it wasn’t for quite some time that we found out about all the other dog parks in the area.
According to the Minnesota DNR’s Fall Color Finder, now is the perfect time for fall colors in Victoria. However, fall colors this year are not as spectacular as other years because of the drought we had this summer. Nevertheless, it was a nice day to visit a dog park and get some photos.
On October 9 (one day before my birthday), I visited Stillwater, Minnesota, with my mom and our puggles. This was my first trip to Stillwater, and, boy, have I been missing out! It’s a beautiful, touristy city on the St. Croix River and Minnesota-Wisconsin border.
They were also having their Stillwater Harvest Fest at Lowell Park on the river, though I did not know about this until I got there. It was crowded and, I’m sure, relatively difficult to find parking (see where we parked in the last two photos).
Here are 19 photos I took today. All but the two from the restaurant, which were taken with my Google Pixel 4a, were taken with a Canon EOS R and kit lens.
Road Trip to Tennessee
For Memorial Day, my parents and I traveled by car to visit the family of my brother’s fiancée. All but one of these photos were taken when we stayed at the Hyatt Regency St. Louis at The Arch in Missouri, though I do have more photos that were taken with my iPhone. Unfortunately, I can’t open the photos taken with my iPhone on this Linux computer because they are .heic files, which this computer does not recognize. That being said, I am grateful the weather cooperated when we were at the Gateway Arch, since these are some of the best photos I’ve taken with my Canon EOS R.
Today, my mom, my puggles, and I decided to visit Charles A. Lindbergh State Park in Little Falls, Minnesota, because it was the closest state park at peak fall colors according to the DNR’s Fall Color Finder*. It was a decent state park situated near the Mississippi River. These are the photos I got. (* Update, 12/29/2020: Because of today’s political climate, I am compelled to add that I don’t agree with the political views of the historical figure for which this state park is named.)
A couple months ago, I read a gear review on Wired.com about hummingbird feeders. Since my mom is a huge hummingbird fan and has tons of hummingbird decorations, I told her to read the review. We bought a hummingbird feeder—and, later, a second one—and ever since we have been inundated with hummingbirds. If you like hummingbirds, it makes so much sense to have a hummingbird feeder (or two) so you can enjoy hummingbirds every day rather than waiting for perhaps one the entire summer.
Even though the high was around 60 degrees today, and I’m guessing the hummingbirds are beginning to migrate from Minnesota, it wasn’t long before I captured this hummingbird at one of our feeders this evening.
The hummingbird feeders we use cost $30 on Amazon. The ASIN for the feeders is B00P91VK4U, so you can just copy and paste that into the Amazon search box. We followed the instructions for the sugar water that were included with the feeders, and the hummingbirds seem to love it!
My mom had previously counted about 20 days in a row seeing hummingbirds.
And that is so much better than just one sighting for the entire summer.