Music Monday: Michael W. Smith — Worship Forever

Posted By on September 20, 2021

MWS_wikiTimed with a new album release, Fox NewsFox and Friends had a promo segment with Michael W. Smith. He discussed his ministry and music and highlighted MichaelWSmith_AlbumFN210912a video of him singing live, back by a full symphony orchestra (always impressive). It triggered me to purchase his new Worship Forever album (released 9/10/2021).

For those who enjoy uplifting Contemporary Christian music … this new album will be excellent for yourself … or as a gift!

  Michael W. Smith – Forever (older audio – 2021 new below)

Books: Katherine Johnson – My Remarkable Journey: A Memoir

Posted By on September 19, 2021

MyRemarkableJourneyAMemoir_KatherineJohnsonOne of the more inspiring movies in the last decade or so was that based on the career of Katherine Johnson called “Hidden Figures” in 2016. It was compelling enough and about NASA and the Apollo space program that when I spotted the book “My Remarkable Journey: A Memoir” by Katherine Johnson, Joylette Hylick and Katherine Moore … that I wanted to read it.

“Oh, baby … I would have loved to have gone
    into space myself,”
– Katherine Johnson

So, instead of reading it, I’ve opted for the audio read by Robin Miles. Unfortunately I could have done without the fawning over President Obama … but to each their own when it comes to political ideology and focus on race. 🙁

In 2015, at the age of 97, Katherine Johnson became a global celebrity. President Barack Obama awarded her the prestigious Presidential Medal of Freedom—the nation’s highest civilian honor—for her pioneering work as a mathematician on NASA’s first flights into space. Her contributions to America’s space program were celebrated in a blockbuster and Academy-award nominated movie.

In this memoir, Katherine shares her personal journey from child prodigy in the Allegheny Mountains of West Virginia to NASA human computer. In her life after retirement, she served  as a beacon of light for her family and community alike.  Her story is centered around the basic tenets of her life—no one is better than you, education is paramount, and asking questions can break barriers. The memoir captures the many facets of this unique woman: the curious “daddy’s girl,” pioneering professional, and sage elder.

This multidimensional portrait is also the record of a century of racial history that reveals the influential role educators at segregated schools and Historically Black Colleges and Universities played in nurturing the dreams of trailblazers like Katherine. The author pays homage to her mentor—the African American professor who inspired her to become a research mathematician despite having his own dream crushed by racism.

Infused with the uplifting wisdom of a woman who handled great fame with genuine humility and great tragedy with enduring hope, My Remarkable Journey ultimately brings into focus a determined woman who navigated tough racial terrain with soft-spoken grace—and the unrelenting grit required to make history and inspire future generations.

Visual Imagery: Lightening, Lightning and Lighting

Posted By on September 18, 2021

A lot of people, including me, stumble repeatedly on seemingly the simplest things. Often this comes when trying to remember something or with the spelling of words we write and read all the time … yet we still seem to forget them again and again.

I’m not sure if “Lightening, Lightning and Lighting” are issues for me (as others are — or “laziness” when it comes to proofreading blog posts), but these words for others?  Visuals Imagery like the one below can often help, as do Mnemonic aids.


Visual imagery is a great way to help memorize items for some people. For instance, it’s often used to memorize pairs of words (green grass, yellow sun, blue water, etc.). The Method of Loci, mentioned above, is a form of using imagery for memorization. By recalling specific imagery, it can help us recall information we associated with that imagery.

Imagery usually works best with smaller pieces of information. For instance, when trying to remember someone’s name you’ve just been introduced to. You can imagine a pirate with a wooden leg for “Peggy,” or a big grizzly bear for “Harry.”


Friday Filler: Mesmerized by a Kinetic Sculpture

Posted By on September 17, 2021

Saw a bit of impressive wind sculpture art; it makes for an excellent Friday Filler post.

Office project patching update photos and banana bread #TBT

Posted By on September 16, 2021

Here are a few leftover project photos from the weekend for Throwback Thursday #TBT to add to PatchingMultipleOutlets210912the personal archive. Normally we make banana bread in the full-size Bosch oven when our bananas go soft and brown, but  I keep trying to get the convection baking setting correct on our toaster ovennot bad this time!


The slow home office update project is inching along now that summer is winding down. The closet was finally cleared and crack patching started as I used a two part method to repair stress cracks. First chip out the cracked drywall in a “V” shape then fill with either automotive body filler (Bondo) or Durham’s Rock Hard Water Putty that I’ve used for decades – one can of powder lasts a lifetime. Then use a normal drywall compound and sand as usual. I also painted the ceiling, but after trying to stretch a gallon of paint, realized it will need a second coat.


For those who have used the Internet and connected online in a variety of ways over the years, here are a few from my office and why there were so many boxes (oh, and check out this snarled rate’s nest from the cable days). The patching of the wall behind my corner desk pretty much tells the story (photo above).

Here’s a list of difference wired connections:

  1. Standard phone line and dial up modem (the only connection available)
  2. Twin phone company wired 128Kb ISDN lines giving us 256Kb up and down with Cat5 cabling throughout the house when we built it in 1995
  3. StarBand Satellite 2-way broadband Internet
  4. Adelphia, then TimeWarner and Spectrum cable TV and Internet
  5. Cincinnati Bell Fioptics fiber optics broadband to the house 

Apple Event (9/14/2021) introduces iPhone13 series smartphones

Posted By on September 15, 2021

iPhone13Pro MaxiPhone13Pro MaxsideAs our current Apple iPhone smartphones age (currently Brenda and I have iPhone7 and 7 plus), there is an interest in upgrading to the 5G capable Apple A15 chipped iPhone13 or 13Pro. The Apple Event on Tuesday afternoon highlighted the new smartphones and focused on their photo and video capability.

As a photographer and Apple guy from way back and having spent much of my life from junior high, high school, college plus grad school, and career years connected to both film and digital work, I’m hungry to get my hands on … or at least see the new Apple iPhone.

A few points beside the impressive 12MP camera and video capabilities (jaw dropping what can be done with smartphone cameras these days), are the advantages in the Super Retina XDR displays with ProMotion. The “pro” versions are either 6.1-inch or 6.7-inch and capable of displaying 2532‑by‑1170-pixel resolution or 2778‑by‑1284-pixel resolution. To improve battery life, the A15 Bionic chip with a 6-core CPU, 5-core GPU and 16-core Neural Engine can switch between 10 to 120Hz depending on purpose (ProMotion Technology).

A few more highlights had to do with the durability, improved night mode for photos using LiDAR, the macro ability and better optical zoom ranges for the different lenses.

Much of the event was spent demonstrating the video produced on the iPhone13s … which is so impressive that one wonders if there is even a need to have DSLR cameras anymore


The new iPhone 13 series pricing starts with the 5.4-inch iPhone 13 mini at $699, the 6.1-inch iPhone 13 at $799, the iPhone 13 Pro at $999 and the 6.7-inch iPhone 13 Pro Max at $1099. They are all interesting.

As cracks appear we are prepared to dispute the concrete driveway

Posted By on September 14, 2021

Our end of summer driveway project has left us irritated and a bit depressed. This isn’t our first concrete project, so we do know what to expect and what is possible.DrivewayCrack210905 Our builder supervised our first driveway at this house (the finish looked good and there were no initial cracks, but after a decade it flaked off in spots). We poured additional concrete for the detached poolhouse garage (very well done), did decking around the pool with a “cool deck” finish, added the basketball turn around area and a section behind the poolhouse later, but before the asphalt (it is all fine). We had a premium stamped concrete poured for the backporch and it looks great and is holding up well. In a previous century we also did a driveway, back porch and pool with decking in Hudson, Ohio and were completely satisfied. So, we know what concrete crews are capable of and how it should look.

DrivewayNoticeBrushing210906That said, the new concrete driveway is a disappointment and is already cracking in several spots. It has a lousy brushed finish and several rain damaged spots due to pouring on a rain forecasted day. It is not going to be a pleasant meeting when they ask for my final payment (The crew still hasn’t been back to fix the pitch or add a drain we previously discussed).

More driveway photos from September 2021 below:


Desultory - des-uhl-tawr-ee, -tohr-ee

  1. lacking in consistency, constancy, or visible order, disconnected; fitful: desultory conversation.
  2. digressing from or unconnected with the main subject; random: a desultory remark.
My Desultory Blog