December 31, 2006

December 31, 2006....Be Safe, Enjoy

A photo from a recent visit to the newly opened Las Margaritas in Cottage Grove. Trust me on this, the best margaritas in town.

Happy New Years To All!!

December 30, 2006

I See Santa, Do You?

Yesterday I mentioned I brought my two children to the Mall Of America to see Santa Claus. I took a photo of where he is at the mall. He is in a new location this year from previous years. Nestled inside of a store now with sitting chairs as the line progresses, which is dang nice let me tell you. Santa was facing away from me during this shot. He was standing back while a child who was a bit scared of Santa was getting comfortable in the surroundings so Santa could sneak in and have a photo taken with the child. This Santa is wonderful with the children and works very well with the photographers.

December 29, 2006

Dashing Through The Snow

On my recent visit to the Mall Of America, we took a moment before we went and visited Santa to listen to this young choir singing Christmas carols. I'm not sure who they were exactly, but they sounded wonderful and were fully into the spirit of the coming events.

December 28, 2006

A Christmas Tree For Olivier

This was the biggest tree I could find for yesterday's large ornaments. These two trees are very large and stand inside the main event area inside the Mall Of America. The trees look much larger when you are standing there in person, hopefully this photo will give them some size.

December 27, 2006

Is It Really Small Or Very Large

Looking at the photo, it's quite difficult to determine the size of this Christmas ornament. I could be standing very close, yet is possible for the bulb to be that large in size? I wont keep you in suspense, the ornament is about ten feet tall and is hanging in one of the corners of the Mall Of America. You can see the skylight in the top portion of the bulbs reflection.

December 24, 2006

Merry Christmas From Twin Cities Daily Photo

Almost Christmas here in my part of the world, it's officially the 'eve' now as I feverishly wrap the remaining gifts for my family. This is a photo of my mom and dads fireplace that they have decorated quite nicely with a mirror and a ton of candles. It gives a very nice warmth without having a blazing fire.

Merry Christmas to all!

December 23, 2006

You'll Never Guess This One

You'd never guess what I am actually taking a photo of in today's photo. Yes, it's part of what I posted yesterday, but I was focusing on the statue yesterday. Today is something that's not scene, but is a predominate part of the photo. I've never actually taken a photo of today's subject intentionally before, but it's so overlooked. Instead of making a guessing game of it, I'll just tell y'all because there hasn't been much traffic here with the busy holiday season going on now.

So what is today's subject, I know, get on with it already....Drum roll please....I'm taking a photo of the shadow of the Cathedral in St Paul that is directly behind me where I was standing. It just stood out as such a large figure that I thought I would try and capture it to see what it looked like in a photo. [photo of the cathedral for reference]

December 22, 2006

Yet Another Monument I Know Nothing About

Keeping with yesterday's theme of monuments I know nothing about but have seen hundreds and hundreds of times in my life, I'm posting the backside of someone who was very prominent in St Paul's history, an early settler I would imagine. I know he is placed here so he can keep watch on the city of St Paul if I recall correctly. But who is it exactly? That's another good question that I couldn't find on google. I see a couple of plaques on the bottom portion of the statue, I'm putting reading it in the spring when the weather warms on my to do list and I'll post a close up photo. Why spring? Because we finally got a little bit of snow here and winter is upon us in Minnesota. Is today the official first day of winter or was it yesterday? But to see a photo of our snow and the VERY large snow flakes that were falling, stop by fellow local daily photo blogger Carol of St Paul for an at the scene photo of our first snowfall of the season.

December 21, 2006

Were So Sorry, Uncle Albert

In West St Paul, there is this very small triangle patch of grass with a small monument as shown in the photo. There is a road surrounding the park, Dodd Road, Smith Avenue and Butler Avenue if I recall correctly. It's actually a park, Albert Park. Perhaps it is a grave stone and the guys first and last name is Albert Park. Perhaps this is the gravestone for Uncle Albert that the Beatles sing about in their Uncle Albert song?. I really do not know and it's something I've always wondered about. Is it really a park to play at, which you would end up playing in traffic at some point as there is traffic within reach, or is it the worlds smallest cemetery with only one tombstone?

The park has their own Facebook page:

December 20, 2006

Sounds Of Silence

Another photo from the March 13, 2006 snow storm. We still do not have any snow here in Minne'snow'ta, but I'm not complaining. It certinaly is great not having to break out the shovel or snow blower yet. We are almost through December and typically one of the colder months of the winter. We are well above average in temperatures this winter. Life is good.

December 19, 2006

Ice Palace 2004 Series - pic 8

Another photo from the 2004 St Paul Winter Carnival Ice Palace series.

Links to all of the photos in the series:

Photo 7 Photo 6 Photo 5 Photo 4 Photo 3 Photo 2 Photo 1

December 18, 2006

My Name Is Kid Rock

Today's photo was from earlier in the year, April 13. Kid Rock was playing in St Paul at the Xcel energy center. Wifey and I had seats in row 14, center section of I recall correctly. The show was entertaining, energetic, and a bit loud for some of you I would imagine. For taking photos, I found it quite challenging. I was the tripod and I couldn't hold the camera still long enough to get a clear shot. I had to either use my flash or wait until the lights were bright on stage. Also, I had only had a digital camera about a month at that point and was still very new to taking photos with it.

December 16, 2006

Lack Of Snow Here This Winter

So far this winter here in Minnesota I've seen a couple of snow flakes falling, but nothing that is typical of a Minnesota snow storm. I do believe this is the third winter in a row that we've been flirting with no snow on the ground at Christmas time. Personally I don't mind, but I work with a bunch of people who are snow mobile owners. The depression in their voices over the lack of snow, to me, makes me laugh. Since I have not been able to post any snow photos, I thought I would post one from snow storm from last March. This is a shot of my neighbors back yard and their cloths lines collecting the snow. I thought it made a great shot of the joys of snow.

December 15, 2006

The Other Half Of The Equation

Today's photo is a continuation of yesterday's photo. It looks nothing like yesterdays, but it's the same location and the same barge. Today it is featured, where yesterday it was well hidden. You may not have seen it unless you looked really close.

December 14, 2006

How High Is The Water Johnny?

I really like this photo. It has a barge tied to some posts, but the water level is about normal for this time of the year. The gauge is to show how high the water is during the flood season, if there is one during the spring or very large downpour. There is just a lot of structure in this area. The area we are looking at is the Mississippi River and across from the Harriot Island area in St Paul where I've posted a number of photos the past couple of months.

December 13, 2006

Don't See This Often, Eh?

Drove into work yesterday morning and there were flashing lights as I approached the entrance. Here sat this Chevy Silverado, upside down on the lawn. It was rather slippery on the drive in as the overnight fog turned to ice on the roads. This driver slid across the road, through the opposing traffic, hit the curb and flipped the truck over into the position you see. The driver was shaken, but walking around and doing well thankfully. Wow!

December 11, 2006

Real Sea Monkeys?

Remember those ads for sea monkeys in the back of magazines? You could buy these sea monkey eggs from whomever was selling them. They'd send them to you in the mail and poof, you had growing sea monkeys. In reality, they were a form of brine shrip about the size of a period at the end of a sentence. Those are not sea monkeys in today's photo, these are Sea Horses. This was taken at the Minnesota Zoo by my wife in one of their very large fish tanks. I really like the colors in this photo. I'm not sure why these sea horses reminded me of the sea monkey ads, but I had to share it with you all.

December 9, 2006

Spiral Bridge Mural With Trolls?

I'm not sure about the trolls, but they are in the painting. This mural can be found downtown Hastings. I believe it is on the side of the Scandinavian Marketplace building which can be seen in this photo from an earlier daily photo of mine. The spiral bridge in the mural is actually what the original bridge looked like as you crossed the Mississippi River leaving Hastings.

I've found an archive photo of the original spiral bridge from around 1900. Here is an aerial view of the bridge that shows a lot clearer photo and just where the bridge was located, I'm not sure of the date of this photo. I believe the bridge at the time was for horse and buggy plus people crossing only. I'm not sure when the bridge was torn down for replacement, but I'm sure it couldn't have lasted too long once automobiles started crossing the bridge.

I'm rather curious if anyone knows of any other spiral bridges that are in place or had been in place at one time. I would have to believe this is quite original for it's time. I've never seen another and with today's automobile use, it certainly isn't practical.

December 8, 2006

Floods Of 1965

Same location as yesterday's photo in Hastings, but the focus is on the High Water Mark sign. If you look close there is a squiggly blue line above the '18 April 1965' portion of the sign post. That is how high the water of the Mississippi Rose rose to at it's peak during that seasons floods. I left the light and the sitting bench in the photo so you have something to compare the height of the water mark. One thing to keep in mind, from the top of the walking path in the photo to the actual running water in the river is about a 15 foot drop.

December 7, 2006

Fall Colors In Hastings

Photo of the river bridge as you leave or enter Hastings. This bridge crosses the Mississippi River and waaaaaay in the background on the right side of the river is a lock and damn, I believe it's number 4. This photo was from a month ago when the fall colors were just about at peak.

December 6, 2006

Rear View Mirror

This beautiful building is the City Hall in Hastings, this is the back view of the building. I'm not sure if this building was originally something else at one time or if they built it like this as a city hall. I really like the curved arches that flow through out the building, the windows, the roof, and some of the detailed brick work. What strikes me as odd is the chimney. It's not made from the same brick type and it's off center.

December 5, 2006

We Know How To Build Snowmen

This is Hedican the snowman. He was built by Paul Bunyan a long time ago. No no, I'm kidding. This 54 foot tall snowman, made of stucco was built in 1974 by the North St Paul Jaycees. I'm not sure when the change happened or why it happened, but the snowman used to have black buttons and never had a name printed on it before. The snowman sits on the corner of Highway 36 and Margaret Street in North St Paul.

Birds eye view via Live Search

December 4, 2006

Let's Turn To The Side

Another photo of the Baker Recreation Center in St Paul, but from the side this time. Now if you look at yesterdays photo, you would never know that the building went partly under ground. There is only a small portion that is under the sidewalk and it's for the water hose storage for the ice rinks.

December 2, 2006

Baker Recreation Center

This building is attached to Baker playground. It was built in 1938 and is still in use today. The bottom portion of the building stores a lot of the sports equipment for the playground, including the water hose to make the ice rinks for skating. The upstairs portion looks like it's still in use, but I'm not sure what for these days. I can tell you, it was where I went to pre-school a long time ago. I doubt that is what it would be used for today as they built a larger, newer rec center up the top of the hill which you can see in yesterday's photo.

December 1, 2006

Theme Day: Photo From The Waist Down

Today is theme day, photo from the waist down.

52 Daily Photo sites are participating in the December theme, please use the links to below to visit them. Due to time zone differences and other factors, the theme photo may not be displayed until later if you are viewing early in the day.

1 - 2 - 3 - 4 - 5 - 6 - 7 - 8 - 9 - 10 - 11 - 12 - 13 - 14 - 15 - 16 - 17 - 18 - 19 - 20 - 21 - 22 - 23 - 24 - 25 - 26 - 27 - 28 - 29 - 30 - 31 - 32 - 33 - 34 - 35 - 36 - 37 - 38 - 39 - 40 - 41 - 42 - 43 - 44 - 45 - 46 - 47 - 48 - 49 - 50 - 51 - 52 Yesterday I mentioned sliding down the hill I was standing upon. Today I'm pretty much at the bottom of the hill looking up so you can see what a hill it can be for sliding. I'd be curious how fast one could get on various slides as some do run faster than others. Speed was one thing, but how far one could travel was another thing and an all new challenge. The record that I witnessed was by a friend of mine that I went to school with. If you look at yesterday's photo, there are two visible baseball fields, but there is a third baseball field just outside of the photo to the right. The longest slide down the hill is to about where home plate would be if you can visualize where that would be. Trust me, it's a very long journey to get there and was done on a slide with the metal blades and the wood sitting area [I'm sure there is a specific name for this type of snow sled].

For reference, I sent my two children running up the hill so you can see just how big the hill is to am eight and six year old. The recreation center is also in the background. The second level was a great place to sit in the chairs and look out at the city. One could see for miles from the vantage point.