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Archive for the 'Family' Category

An enjoyable fall hike

Wednesday, November 10th, 2010

On Saturday, we hiked Trail 2 at Brown County State Park. We had hiked this trail once before. It’s a moderate 2-mile loop. I enjoyed the sign at the trailhead with lots of data about the trail.

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The trail features numerous rock bridges, stairs, and other structures.

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We walked past some of the cabins, which are available for rental. We noticed they had a whole lot of windows. They looked like a fun place to spend a weekend. If we didn’t live so close, we would consider staying in a cabin like these.

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This bridge seems funny now, with the creek completely dry from the drought. Even when it is running, I’m sure it’s a small stream.

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As you can see, Rob was enjoying himself thoroughly!

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As were the bipeds.

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The trail winds through a ravine for a while.

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And eventually you reach the North Observation Tower. We didn’t go up in the tower, although we have been in it before.

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It was an incredibly beautiful day, and we especially enjoyed looking up at the beautiful blue sky through the remaining foliage.

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At one point, Rob insisted that I take his photo. He is a photogenic dog, I have to admit.

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These stone steps led back up to the Abe Martin Lodge area, where we had started.

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It was a perfect day to be out hiking, and we all enjoyed going for a walk through the woods together. Not every outing has to be epic.

The traffic at Brown County has already died off significantly. Once the leaves are past their peak, you’ll find a lot fewer people in the park. That just leaves more room for the rest of us.

Perseids

Tuesday, August 17th, 2010

Last week was the annual Perseid Meteor Shower. The shower peaked Thursday night, but Sarah and I went out both Wednesday and Thursday nights to see what we could see. We drove outside of town a good 20 minutes or so, into a very dark state forest and laid on the ground, on the dam of our favorite lake, looking up at the night sky.

Wednesday, we saw about 15-20 meteors, include 3-4 really long/bright ones. I tried to take some photos, and while I did get some good shots of the stars, the meteors proved difficult to photograph.

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In this crop, you can see a meteor. I had to increase the brightness a lot to be able to see it, but it’s there.

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The next shot appears to have a meteor, but it’s actually an airplane.

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Thursday night, my mom and nephew joined us. I was worried that my nephew, who is 12 1/2, would get bored — even at the peak of the shower, in a very dark location, it can be 10 minutes or more between meteors. It takes a lot of patience. But he was fascinated! And, he was great at spotting meteors. He counted 22 meteors … and he noted that number 5 was the best.

Even if there hadn’t been a meteor shower at all, it would have been a great experience. It’s shocking how many more stars you can see, just by going a ways out of town. We all also enjoyed the sounds of various insects, and the¬†occasional¬†“ploop” sound of a frog jumping in the water, or a fish coming to the surface.

Watching the meteor shower certainly gave me a renewed sense of appreciation for astronomy, and I’m glad my nephew was fascinated as well. My great-great uncle discovered Morehouse Comet, so I guess it’s in our blood!

2009 in review, personally

Wednesday, January 6th, 2010

No bike content here, that’ll be a separate post.

2009 was a strange year. We spent most of the year in Pennsylvania, having moved there in October of 2008 when Sarah was offered a job there.

Her job was great, but we hated living there (really, we hated the Wilkes-Barre area, not the whole of PA). We missed our families, both of whom live in Indiana. We took a long hard look at what was important to us and we realized we belonged back in Indiana.

So, in September of 2009, we moved back home. Once we returned, we went through a lot of effort to attempt to put our lives back the way they were before the move. And, we did such a good job of it that now it almost feels like the 10 months we spent living in Pennsylvania never happened. Like a weird dream, or an extended vacation (even though our time there was largely miserable).

I also found myself unemployed at the beginning of 2009, and started my own company. That went relatively well, but ultimately I learned that I hate working for myself, at least in that way. After we moved back home, I got a more normal job, and it feels great.

So, in a way, it was a year-and-change of mis-fires: moving to Pennsylvania, starting my own company. But we learned valuable lessons about how we DON’T want to live, which in turn reinforced how we DO want to live. It was a year of taking risks, but also of taking control of our lives, and learning how to steer the ship. We oversteered a couple of times, but we managed to correct for it.

Moving back home was even risky. Sarah had to quit a good job so we could do it, and we spent a lot of our savings to make it happen. But we saw what we wanted and went for it, and I am proud to say that we did. We are now both gainfully employed and loving being here … near our families and friends. It’s great to be home.

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