Loveland has a large art presence, with various galleries, three foundries and a wonderful sculpture garden exhibiting more than one-half of the town’s public art collection. Benson Sculpture Garden currently displays 154 sculptures in a public park full of trails, wetlands and flowers.
Today I start a journey to share my life with you…the good, the bad, and the not so pretty.
It’s been a week since Sully and I headed out of the Rocky Mountains toward the central Texas hill country, on a quest to meet other travelers who are currently living our future dream. We were bound for Fredericksburg and the first RV Entrepreneur Summit, where 120 full-time RVers (or wanna be’s like us) would converge upon an unsuspecting Jellystone RV park to trade stories, secrets to success and gooey s’mores around a roaring campfire.
I have had a somewhat strange desire to see one particular icon of American culture for more than 20 years, and Labor Day weekend of 2016, my wish was granted. Sully and I found ourselves in front of the Wigwam Motel in Holbrook, Arizona!
Over the past several years I’ve traveled I-40 west of Albuquerque many times, all the time intending to visit Acoma Pueblo, just 12 miles south of the interstate. But for some reason I never quite got there. Well, I remedied that situation a week ago by making the trek to “Sky City” my one and only MUST DO item on my latest trip to New Mexico. And I can honestly say that I’m very pleased to have finally arrived!
Route 66 holds an allure for many, myself included. But one town along “The Mother Road” seems to get overlooked in guidebooks and travel atlases associated with the 2,400 mile journey across America – Gallup, New Mexico. So Sully and I set out to explore this forgotten purveyor of roadside history and hopefully set the record straight.
It’s no joke…Golden Retrievers like to retrieve. Balls. Frisbees. House Shoes. And my boy also loves to pick up sticks.
The hypnotic lure of Charleston drew me back to the Low Country of South Carolina on our way home from Southport. For some reason this town always makes me feel “cozy.” It has the perfect mixture of historic architecture, generous and fun-loving people, and Southern charm, and I wanted to walk its cobblestone streets again!
Winter was “Dog Heaven” on the sand. Dogs could run along the surf, uninhibited by leashes, as long as they were under vocal command. Well, we were about to find out what Sully thought about all of this freedom!
Several years ago, when I last visited Southport, North Carolina, I enjoyed touring nearby Orton Plantation. With 20 acres of gardens, centuries-old live oak trees covered in Spanish moss, and swamps with alligators, it was a fascinating adventure for this photographer/gardener!
Well, since I’m trying to put a new mantra into play in my life – “Are you really living life, or just paying the bills until you die?” – Sully and I decided to make an impromptu trip across the country to celebrate his first birthday on the beach near Southport, North Carolina!
Sully and I recently rolled into one of my favorite cities…Nashville, Tennessee. My father’s family hales from that “neck of the woods,” and Tennessee is where I really learned to speak Southern, long before I invaded Texas for my college education. So I was glad to take a quick drive down Memory Lane.
It’s that place that E.T. kept calling…where McCaulay Culkin was left alone…where Simon and Garfunkel found their music waiting…and where Dorothy wanted to go and Thomas Wolfe could never return to again.
Christmastime always brings a variety of light displays to enjoy. This year Sully and I thought we’d showcase some beautiful lights photographed in years past as a reminder that Jesus is the true Light of the Christmas season.
From Dolly Parton’s Dixie Stampede (a sort of dinner theater combined with rodeo) to Shoji Tabuchi’s extravagant bathrooms (yes, it’s true – they are in the Hall of Fame for Best Bathrooms in America, winning the coveted award in 2009!), no expense has been spared to entertain the masses in Branson!
Long before the recent wave of Central American children illegally crossed into the United States, I drove from Tucson to see for myself the struggles along the US/Mexican border. I headed about 60 miles south to Nogales, Arizona and entered a world so far from the surface appearance of our typical American suburban life
Growing up in the Kansas City area, I’ve always been a little enamored by the Santa Fe Trail. As a child I lived about a mile from one of its river crossings, but at the time never realized the real gravity of its existence. In fact, it wasn’t until I moved west that the significance of this uniquely American journey struck a chord deep within me. Since then, I’ve been chasing stagecoach ruts through vast prairies, over arduous terrain and through mountain passes, searching for that key ingredient that forces some of us to “go west, young man!”
Picture this: a girl and her dog, hiking through fields of wildflowers, with a backdrop of the Continental Divide behind them and a high mountain lake in front. Birds were singing, a gentle breeze blowing – you can almost smell the fragrance of the flowers and hear the whisper of the…
Everyone knows of my love for my Golden Retriever AND my love for my Subaru Crosstrek XV. Well, what could be better than mixing the two?
Some days I feel like a Golden Retriever. I spend inordinate amounts of time trying to accomplish big goals, but it seems even if my focus is on the goal I’m chasing, I never get to keep it…Fetch and Drop It. Fetch and Drop It. Fetch and Drop It.
Pardon us for sticking our noses in your business, but…
A few weeks back Sully and I headed south for a weekend adventure along a section of Route 66 that I had never visited before. This was to be my Golden Retriever’s first stay away from home and my first foray into the unknown territory of Tucumcari, New Mexico. I had done my homework, having, like many travelers, a certain affinity for that legendary route across much of America, and I knew that Tucumcari held a host of vintage roadside motels, service stations and restaurants from the Mother Road’s most popular era. I was eager to photograph all of their neon signs, with boasts of “Refrigerated Air” and “Television,” so we booked a room at the local Motel 6 (definitely NOT from the Route 66 timeframe, but they did allow dogs and left the light on for us!), and packed among other things, my tripod for night photography.
Are you ever frustrated with your role as chauffeur, taking one kid after another to their music lessons, sporting events and doctor’s appointments, leaving you no time for yourself? Well, we here at Photo Tripping America have a solution for you…”Pup Driver.”
When I first moved to Colorado almost thirty years ago (I was just a baby…yeah, right!), a neighbor told me to beware. She said it was a well known fact that people moved to small mountain communities for one of two reasons: either they wanted to escape the big city and its fast-paced life, or they wanted to hide out. I have tried not to buy in to that philosophy, but I’d be willing to bet the guy who posted the sign above fit in the latter group.
For years I’ve been driving through the San Luis Valley, refusing to stop for pictures that I’ve secretly wanted to capture, but fears of government scrutiny have kept me from doing so. Well, no more! I now have photographic evidence that there are aliens in this fertile valley of central Colorado. Whether you’re a believer in UFOs or not, surely you can agree that the following images are uncharacteristic for an area where potato farms and alfalfa fields run rampant…
Last week Sully and I headed down to the Royal Gorge Region of Colorado, hunting a little Springtime color. If you read about our excursion through Canon City, Florence and the Royal Gorge, you know that we still hadn’t finished the trip when we left off (too much fun, too little writing space). I didn’t want to leave out a section of backcountry that was stunning, in hopes that you, too, might want to visit Phantom Canyon. So here’s the low down…
We headed out this past weekend in search of Spring in the Rockies. Going down river through “the canyon” along the Arkansas River, starting with Bighorn Sheep Canyon, Sully and I stopped in Canon City for a break. That’s where I discovered that my attempts to create a “garden dog” out of my Golden Retriever had succeeded more effectively than I could have imagined!
“A tisket, a tasket, a puppy in a basket!” Wasn’t it Ella Fitzgerald who sang another version of this song? I don’t think she had an energetic dog running underfoot while recording “a green and yellow basket,” so I took a little poetic license to adapt the song to fit our needs.
I feel like Bonnie Hunt in the movie “Dave” every time Sully shows up at my desk…
Last Saturday was set aside as “Sully’s Day.” We headed to the Front Range to have the car tires rotated, then just play, play, play. In fact, two destinations allowed us the opportunity to indulge in a little retail therapy, where my Golden Retriever could peruse the aisles and aisles of bones, treats and toys.
I guess it is true – you do find art everywhere…even in a muddy field on the plains of the Texas Panhandle. I’ve always wanted to see the Cadillac Ranch, but like revisiting your childhood home, the real thing seemed a lot smaller than I had imagined, but none the less quirky and original.
We lost a very dear friend (and my employer) a couple of weeks ago, and looking back, I realize that Sully must have known what was coming. You see, a few days before, the dog and I were traveling to Denver. Our trip took us through the small mountain town of Bailey, and Sully, who is normally a very quiet and mellow traveler, became agitated. I looked for an opportunity to pull over to let him do his “business,” and wouldn’t you know it – the first driveway available was the entrance to the Coney Island Boardwalk restaurant!