The Coming Storm   Leave a comment

Lightning dances over the Alabama Hills National Recreation Area in California. Photo by David Parry. Tweeted by the US Department of the Interior, 2/27/15.

Lightning dances over the Alabama Hills National Recreation Area in California. Photo by David Parry. Tweeted by the US Department of the Interior, 2/27/15.

Posted February 28, 2015 by henrymowry in Photography

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The Ice Caves   Leave a comment

This Saturday, the breathtaking ice caves at Apostle Islands National Lakeshore in Wisconsin will open for the first time this season. The ice caves are an always changing phenomenon — the  formations change from chamber to chamber and from day to day. The result is a fairyland of needlelike icicles. Visiting the ice caves requires at least a 2 mile hike across Lake Superior, and present conditions might make it a challenging trek. For up-to-date info on the ice caves, visit ww.nps.gov/apis or call the Ice Line at (715) 779-3397 - extension 3. National Park Service photo. Posted on Tumblr by the US Department of the Interior 2/25/15.

This Saturday, the breathtaking ice caves at Apostle Islands National Lakeshore in Wisconsin will open for the first time this season. The ice caves are an always changing phenomenon — the formations change from chamber to chamber and from day to day. The result is a fairyland of needlelike icicles. Visiting the ice caves requires at least a 2 mile hike across Lake Superior, and present conditions might make it a challenging trek. For up-to-date info on the ice caves, visit ww.nps.gov/apis or call the Ice Line at (715) 779-3397 – extension 3. National Park Service photo. Posted on Tumblr by the US Department of the Interior, 2/25/15.

The Perils Of Online Shopping   Leave a comment

Online ShoppingA good friend of ours is snake bit. That’s a technical term in sales for a person, that no matter what you try, always has a bad sales experience with a particular company.

Jill is snake bit by Amazon.com. No matter what she buys, no matter what delivery she chooses … it’s wrong. Snake bit.

I, on the other hand, love Amazon.com’s prime shipping. Buy practically anything on their site (which means, buy practically anything) and, with Amazon Prime, you’ll have that item in two days with “free” shipping. You actually pay something like $90 per year for that “free” shipping, but when you buy everything from there, it is worth it. IMHO.

Jill’s mileage may vary, after being snake bit so many times.

However, one item I don’t buy from Amazon – or from a regular brick and mortar store – is my breakfast food of choice. The only place to buy Post Cereal’s Great Grains Crunchy Pecan, uh, cereal, is Walmart.com, where you can buy a box for only $3.28. Amazon.com charges $5.86/box when you buy 7 (or $12.49/box when you buy two, or $8.50/box when you buy one. No, it doesn’t make sense).

So I buy my cereal at Walmart.com … except you can only buy 4 boxes at a time. And, to get free shipping, you have to have a minimum order of $50.

So, last night, Velda and I had to get creative with our purchase from Walmart.com to get a $50 order. We bought cat food, kitty litter and soap. And my maximum order of 4 boxes of cereal. $51 order = free shipping. Done.

Except Walmart.com told us we wouldn’t get the shipment until March 4. OK, no problem, I just won’t have breakfast cereal for a week.

And then they delivered the entire order TODAY, in less than 24 hours. After telling me that delivery would take 8 days, it took less than 1. And they didn’t even tell me that the shipment would be here sooner! They just got it here earlier than promised and expected me to be happy about it.

I’m not. I’m frustrated that they can’t control their inventory. I’m frustrated that they won’t let me buy the quantity of cereal that I want. I am just plain frustrated with Walmart, so I’ve apparently joined a pretty big club.

I also went online shopping this week at HomeDepot.com, because Mrs M’s Handmade needed LED light bulbs for our new booth lighting. I wanted a color temperature of 5000 degrees (“daylight”), so I chose a specific bulb … and I needed 12 of them. I elected to shop at home, pick up in the store so I could get the bulbs when the lights arrived. This is the first time I’ve done this shop online/pick up in-store with Home Depot.

What happened? The merchandise was exactly as ordered, and picked up within 30′ of the front entrance of this big box store (wow, that’s great!). The only negative was the clerk that processed the transaction didn’t see a need to bag the 12 light bulbs … she just handed me the display units with the 12 lights mounted on cards and stuck in slots, and thought she was done.

Well, OK, then. I guess she was.

What’s it all mean? No clue, but as of now, I don’t think anyone is getting online shopping right all of the time. And that’s a big frustration, because I’d really be OK if I never walked into another store again.

 

Assateague Island National Seashore   Leave a comment

The gorgeous Assateague National Seashore. Photo by Bob Ferralli. Posted on Tumblr by the US Department of the Interior, 2/24/15.

The gorgeous Assateague Island National Seashore. Photo by Bob Ferralli. Posted on Tumblr by the US Department of the Interior, 2/24/15.

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National Park Service: Assateague Island National Seashore

Wikipedia: Assateague Island National Seashore

To Fly   Leave a comment

An orca breaching in Kenai Fjord National Park. Tweeted by the US Department of the Interior, 2/23/15.

An orca breaching in Kenai Fjord National Park. Tweeted by the US Department of the Interior, 2/23/15.

A Blanket Of Snow   Leave a comment

Crater Lake National Park. Photo by TJ Thorne. Tweeted by the US Department of the Interior, 2/22/15.

Crater Lake National Park. Photo by TJ Thorne. Tweeted by the US Department of the Interior, 2/22/15.

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Crater Lake National Park

Spectacular

The Blue Lake

Spectacular Endings   2 comments

Desert Tortoise   Leave a comment

A baby desert tortoise hatches from its egg. Found north and west of the Colorado River in the Mojave Desert in California, Nevada, Arizona and Utah, the desert tortoise is one of most elusive inhabitants of the desert, spending up to 95 percent of its life underground. With a domed shell and elephant-like legs, it is easily distinguishable from its turtle cousins. Photo by U.S. Geological Survey (USGS)​ scientist K. Kristina Drake. Posted on Tumblr 2/20/15 by the US Department of the Interior.

A baby desert tortoise hatches from its egg. Found north and west of the Colorado River in the Mojave Desert in California, Nevada, Arizona and Utah, the desert tortoise is one of most elusive inhabitants of the desert, spending up to 95 percent of its life underground. With a domed shell and elephant-like legs, it is easily distinguishable from its turtle cousins. Photo by U.S. Geological Survey (USGS)​ scientist K. Kristina Drake. Posted on Tumblr 2/20/15 by the US Department of the Interior.

Posted February 21, 2015 by henrymowry in Photography

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Spectacular Beginnings   Leave a comment

Crater Lake National Park. Greg Nyquist captured this stunning shot from Discovery Point just as a storm was clearing the park. Discovery Point is a popular place to watch the sun rise over the park with views of the lake and Wizard Island. Tweeted by the US Department of the Interior, 2/5/15.

Crater Lake National Park. Greg Nyquist captured this stunning shot from Discovery Point just as a storm was clearing the park. Discovery Point is a popular place to watch the sun rise over the park with views of the lake and Wizard Island. Tweeted by the US Department of the Interior, 2/5/15.

Grand Canyon National Park at Sunrise. Photo by Peter C Blanchard. Tweeted by the US Department of the Interior, 2/10/15.

Grand Canyon National Park at Sunrise. Photo by Peter C Blanchard. Tweeted by the US Department of the Interior, 2/10/15.

Lenticular Clouds   Leave a comment

This rare display of lenticular clouds over Grand Teton National Park in Wyoming last week captivated park visitors. Lenticular (lens-shaped) clouds occur when stable, moist air flows over a mountain, creating a series of large-scale standing waves on the downwind side. Photo by Jackie Skaggs, National Park Service. Posted on Tumblr by the US Department of the Interior, 2/18/15.

This rare display of lenticular clouds over Grand Teton National Park in Wyoming last week captivated park visitors. Lenticular (lens-shaped) clouds occur when stable, moist air flows over a mountain, creating a series of large-scale standing waves on the downwind side. Photo by Jackie Skaggs, National Park Service. Posted on Tumblr by the US Department of the Interior, 2/18/15.

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Grand Teton National Park

Cottonwood Creek

Sunrise On The Tetons

The Oxbow Bend

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