Monday, March 31, 2008

April Theme Day: Water....The Floodwaters of the Mighty Mississippi

Mississippi River at Flood stage 2
Mississippi River at Flood stage 3
Mississippi River at Flood stage

For the April theme day of "Water", I had visions of posting one of my several favorite, most beautiful Memphis water features. But, the current flooding of the Mississippi River is quite compelling, and was the natural choice for me for Theme Day. This past weekend, the river crested at over 37 feet (flood stage is 34 feet), with even more rain in the forecast this week for this entire region. You can see a photo of the beautiful Mississippi at her sparkling best linked in the paragraph below.

The first view is from Mud Island, looking south toward the M Bridge. This view is almost identical to the one I shared here, except I took the older photo from the tree line that you see currently under water in the newer photo above. The park bench that I shared here is currently under water, also.

The second photo shows the view across the Mississippi looking toward the river bank in Arkansas. The Mississippi at this point is almost a mile wide, so for it to rise as much as you can see in these photos, you can imagine the additional volume of water the river has gained in the past few weeks.

During the Great Flood of 1937 which set flood stage records here, my father (at age 11) went with his father to help sandbag the area at Front Street and Poplar Ave. We looked up the statistics on the flood stage in 1937, and that year the river was 11 feet higher than it is currently. He also said that there is nothing heavier than sandbags that have been sitting out in the rain.

All affected by the flooding this year are in our thoughts.

There are currently 178 blogs participating in this Theme Day. Please stop by each one for a visit and to enjoy their wonderful offerings:

theme day id=13
Adelaide, Australia by Gordon, Albuquerque (NM), USA by Helen, American Fork (UT), USA by Annie, Anderson (SC), USA by Lessie, Ararat, Australia by Digger, Arradon, France by Alice, Ashton under Lyne, UK by Pennine, Athens, Greece by Debbie, Auckland, New Zealand by Lachezar, Austin (TX), USA by LB, Bandung, Indonesia by Guntur Purwanto, Barton (VT), USA by Andree, Belgrade, Serbia & Montenegro by Paja, Belgrade, Serbia & Montenegro by Bibi, Bellefonte (PA), USA by Barb-n-PA, Bicheno, Australia by Greg, Bogor, Indonesia by Gagah, Boston (MA), USA by Fenix - Bostonscapes, Boston (MA), USA by Sarah, Whit, & Leyre, Boston (MA), USA by Cluelessinboston, Brighton, UK by Harvey, Brookville (OH), USA by Abraham, Budapest, Hungary by Zannnie and Zsolt, Budapest, Hungary by Isadora, Canterbury, UK by Rose, Cape Town, South Africa by Kerry-Anne, Chandler (AZ), USA by Melindaduff, Chateaubriant, France by Bergson, Cheltenham, UK by Marley, Chicago (IL), USA by b.c., Christchurch, New Zealand by Michelle, Clearwater (FL), USA by Smaridge01, Clearwater Beach (FL), USA by Smaridge01, Cleveland (OH), USA by iBlowfish, Coral Gables (FL), USA by Jnstropic, Cypress (TX), USA by Riniroo, Dallas/Fort Worth (TX), USA by A Wandering Soul, Dunedin (FL), USA by Smaridge01, Durban, South Africa by CrazyCow, East Gwillimbury, Canada by Your EG Tour Guide, Evry, France by Olivier, Glasgow, Scotland by Jackie, Greenville (SC), USA by Denton, Grenoble, France by Bleeding Orange, Guelph, Canada by Pat, Gun Barrel City (TX), USA by Lake Lady, Hamilton, New Zealand by Sakiwi, Hampton (VA), USA by ptowngirl, Haninge, Sweden by Steffe, Helsinki, Finland by Kaa, Hobart, Australia by Greg, Hyde, UK by Old Hyde, Inverness (IL), USA by Neva, Jackson (MS), USA by Halcyon, Jakarta, Indonesia by Santy, Jefferson City (MO), USA by Chinamom2005, Jogjakarta, Indonesia by Jogja Portrait, Joplin (MO), USA by Victoria, Juneau (AK), USA by Gwyn, Katonah (NY), USA by Inkster1, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia by Edwin, Kyoto, Japan by Tadamine, Lake Forest Park (WA), USA by Azure, Larchmont (NY), USA by Marie-Noyale, Las Vegas (NV), USA by Mo, Lisbon, Portugal by Sailor Girl, Lisbon, Portugal by Maria João, Lodz, Poland by ritalounge, London, UK by Mo, London, UK by Ham, Mainz, Germany by JB, Maple Ridge, Canada by Susan, Marseille, France by Alex, Mazatlan, Mexico by Kate, Melbourne, Australia by John, Melbourne, Australia by Mblamo, Memphis (TN), USA by SouthernHeart, Menton, France by Jilly, Mexico City, Mexico by Carraol, Mexico City, Mexico by Poly, Minneapolis (MN), USA by Mitch, Minneapolis (MN), USA by Greg, Minsk, Belarus by Olga, Monrovia (CA), USA by Keith, Monte Carlo, Monaco by Jilly, Montego Bay, Jamaica by Ann, Monterrey, Mexico by rafa, Moscow, Russia by Irina, Mumbai, India by Magiceye, Mumbai, India by MumbaiiteAnu, Mumbai, India by Kunalbhatia, Nancy, France by yoshi, Naples (FL), USA by Isabella, Nashville (TN), USA by Chris, Nelson, New Zealand by Meg and Ben, New Orleans (LA), USA by steve buser, New York City (NY), USA by Ming the Merciless, Niamey, Niger by Dinabee, Norfolk (VA), USA by ptowngirl, Norman (OK), USA by Chad & LaCresha, Norwich, UK by Goddess888, Nottingham, UK by Gail's Man, Odense, Denmark by ania odense, Omsk, Russia by Nataly, Orlando (FL), USA by OrlFla, Oslo, Norway by Lothiane, Paderborn, Germany by Soemchen, Paris, France by Eric, Paris, France by Gordio, Pasadena (CA), USA by Can8ianben, Petaling Jaya, Malaysia by Murphy_jay, Pilisvörösvár, Hungary by Elise, Pont-à-Mousson, France by Tintin-j, Port Angeles (WA), USA by Jelvistar, Port Elizabeth, South Africa by Sam, Port Townsend (WA), USA by raf, Port Vila, Vanuatu by Mblamo, Portland (ME), USA by Corey, Portland (OR), USA by NWgal, Portsmouth (VA), USA by ptowngirl, Prague, Czech Republic by Honza03, Quincy (MA), USA by Cluelessinboston, Riga, Latvia by Prokur, Rotterdam, Netherlands by Ineke, Saarbrücken, Germany by LadyDemeter, Saigon, Vietnam by Simon, Saint Louis (MO), USA by Strangetastes, Saint Paul (MN), USA by Kate, Salem (OR), USA by jill, Salt Lake City (UT), USA by Eric, Salt Lake City (UT), USA by atc, San Diego (CA), USA by Felicia, San Francisco (CA), USA by PFranson, Seattle (WA), USA by Chuck, Seattle (WA), USA by Kim, Seguin (TX), USA by Thien, Selma (AL), USA by RamblingRound, Sequim (WA), USA by Eponabri, Sesimbra, Portugal by Aldeia, Setúbal, Portugal by Maria Elisa, Shanghai, China by Jing, Sharon (CT), USA by Jenny, Singapore, Singapore by Keropok, Sofia, Bulgaria by Antonia, St Francis, South Africa by Sam, Stavanger, Norway by Tanty, Stayton (OR), USA by Celine, Stockholm, Sweden by Stromsjo, Stouffville, Canada by Ken, Subang Jaya, Malaysia by JC, Suffolk (VA), USA by ptowngirl, Sunshine Coast, Australia by bitingmidge, Sydney, Australia by Nathalie, Sydney, Australia by Sally, Székesfehérvár, Hungary by Teomo, Tacloban City, Philippines by agnesdv, Terrell (TX), USA by Bstexas, Terrell (TX), USA by Jim K, The Hague, Netherlands by Lezard, Tokyo, Japan by Tadamine, Toruń, Poland by Torun Observer, Toulouse, France by Julia, Turin, Italy by Livio, Tuzla, Bosnia and Herzegovina by Jazzy, Twin Cities (MN), USA by Slinger, Victoria, Canada by Benjamin Madison, Vienna, Austria by G_mirage2, Virginia Beach (VA), USA by ptowngirl, Wailea (HI), USA by Kuanyin, Washington (DC), USA by Rachel, Wassenaar, Netherlands by Rich, Wellington, New Zealand by Jeremyb, West Paris (ME), USA by crittoria, West Sacramento (CA), USA by Barbara, Weston (FL), USA by WestonDailyPhoto, Williamsburg (VA), USA by ptowngirl, Willits (CA), USA by Elaine, Yardley (PA), USA by Mrlynn,

Sunday, March 30, 2008

Sunny Forsythia

Memphis Botanic Garden---Forsythia
Isn't Forsythia a day-brightener? Ours are almost past peak here, and I wanted to share this with you before the time passes. I'm glad that we took quite a few Spring photos previously, as this weekend was rainy, rainy.

I hope that your weekend was a good one!

Grace St. Luke's Episcopal....One of 1000 Churches

Grace St Luke's Episcopal Entrance
Grace St Luke's Episcopal
Grace St Luke's Episcopal Detail
Memphis is often called "The City of 1000 Churches" or the "City of Churches". There are many beautiful places of worship in Memphis, and one of those is Grace St. Luke's Episcopal Church.

This church was created in 1940 as a result of a merger of Grace Church (founded in 1850 and Memphis' second Episcopal church) and St. Luke's Church (founded in 1894). This church is located at the corner of Peabody and Belvedere in the Central Gardens area of Midtown Memphis, has an active community outreach and missions program, and also Grace St. Luke's School for children in grades pre-school through 8th grade. I attended nursery school at age 3 at Grace St. Luke's, so it is a special place for me.

Saturday, March 29, 2008

BB King Statue

BB King Statue, Detail

BB King Statue
This is the statue of blues legend BB King in the Memphis Visitors' Welcome Center on Riverside Drive in Downtown Memphis. I love the detail in this statue and think that it's a wonderful likeness of Mr. King. He has a blues club here in Memphis on Beale Street, which I shared here last month.

I have to admit that I had never visited our Visitors' Center before today (typical city "native", right? :), and it is quite nice. The Center has wonderful views of the Mississippi River, Mud Island, the M Bridge, and lots of information about fun and interesting places to visit in Memphis and throughout Tennessee.

Friday, March 28, 2008

More Tulips

Memphis Botanic Garden---Pink Tulips
These tulips at the Memphis Botanic Garden were almost done, but I thought this color combination was especially pretty. I know that a lot of you north of me are still seeing some wintry weather, but I will certainly be enjoying your pretty Spring when it's already hot, hot, hot here in the South. My mother and grandmother used to say "it's as hot as blue blazes" during the summer; have you ever heard that phrase?

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Cherry Blossoms...

Memphis Botanic Garden--Cherry Trees budding
I'm so glad that you're enjoying the spring blooms in Memphis with me. Our Spring is usually about two weeks, with an almost direct jump from Winter to Summer, and the season is seeming particularly nice and leisurely this year.

The Cherry blossoms are almost at peak, and should be just gorgeous by this weekend. We are supposed to have rain during the next few days, so I hope that the blossoms will weather that well (if not, I have a great photo of the trees at peak from last Spring). These trees line the public drive along Audubon Golf Course in front of the Botanic Garden, so if you are in Memphis and want to see them in person, you can just drive through...but the Botanic Garden is a great place to visit if you have time.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

A Little More Spring...

Memphis Botanic Garden---Tulips
Thanks to all of you for such a warm welcome back! I really did miss all of you while I was meet some of the nicest people blogging.

I promise that I won't be posting flower photos ad nauseam all Spring...but these purple tulips at the Botanic Garden posted yesterday were just too pretty to keep to myself. I discovered the macro setting on my point-n-shoot camera while in Florida, and I'm still learning to play with it. Having a perfectly clear, sunlit day doesn't hurt either, does it?

My younger son is using the computer for his term paper tonight, so I'm posting while he's taking a break. I hope to do some blog-visiting either later tonight or tomorrow evening. I hope that your week is going well so far!

Monday, March 24, 2008

Spring Is Here!

Memphis Botanic Garden---Tulip and Daffodil Mix
We just returned to Memphis from Florida, and found that Spring had officially arrived in Memphis, too! Today was gorgeous, so we stopped at the Memphis Botanic Garden and took a few photos around the front grounds (the rest is even more amazing). When we have more time soon, we'll take a photo tour of the entire grounds. I thought that you might enjoy seeing this happy, Spring-y tulip mix today. This time period---now through May---is my favorite time in Memphis.

We had a great trip, spending most of our time in Jupiter and West Palm Beach, FL. We saw five Spring Training baseball games (mostly Cardinals games), including the final Dodgers game in Dodgertown, Vero Beach, FL. It was also Tommy LaSorda's final time at that facility, and it was a very poignant, bittersweet moment. We took lots of photos and I hope to have them all in order to share soon.

I missed all of you, and I know that I missed lots of great photos...I can't wait to catch up!

Friday, March 14, 2008

Then & Now, Church of the Holy Communion...One of 1000 Churches

below: an undated early photo of Holy Communion, courtesy of their website...
...and this beautiful church as it looks today...

Memphis is often called "The City of 1000 Churches" or the "City of Churches". There are many beautiful places of worship in Memphis, and one of those is Church of the Holy Communion, Episcopal.
As I am going to be offline through Easter, I thought that I would share one of my favorite churches in Memphis in honor of Easter. This lovely church sits on the corner of two well-traveled streets, Walnut Grove Road and Perkins, and is a beautiful church on a wonderful elevation.
One funny thing we noticed after I had taken these photos is how similar in architecture this church is to one that I shared here a few weeks ago, Evergreen Presbyterian. If Holy Communion weren't on a hill, you'd think I just took photos of the same church from different angles, wouldn't you?
I found this passage about the church's history on their website, and it describes their beginnings much better than I could:
"The first service was held in the new chapel on Jan. 1, 1939. By 1947, Crump says attendance had grown to the extent that the Rev. Dr. Theodore N. Barth, who became Calvary’s Rector in 1940, suggested the building of a church and parish house.
“Some Sundays we had 150 people in that chapel,” Crump said. “We were meeting in station wagons and what have you.”
When the money raised among Calvary members didn’t quite cover the cost of both the church and the building that would become Blaisdell, Barth made a decision that went against the custom of the day.
“The question was, what do we build first,” Crump said.
Instead of building an education wing first, which Crump said was typical of church expansion plans at the time, Barth insisted on building the church first, even ruling against the idea of reducing the height of the planned steeple, which represented about a fourth of the $205,000 proposed cost.
“He said ‘No, we’re going to build that steeple,’” Crump said. “That ended the discussion.”
Ground was broken for the new building on Oct. 24, 1948 and Evening Prayer was held for the first time in the new house of worship on Jan.1, 1950. Church of the Holy Communion was admitted to Parish status in the Diocese of Tennessee on Jan. 24, 1951.
Today, Holy Communion is among the largest and strongest parishes in the Diocese of West Tennessee. And the parish’s focus on worship – from Sunday Eucharist to daily Morning Prayer to Celtic and Taize worship to the “Open For Prayer” banner displayed on Sept. 11 – can be viewed as part of a tradition started more than 50 years ago.
“It made a statement on that corner,” Crump said of the insistence on building a church building first. “The church and the steeple made a statement – and they still do
I hope that you enjoyed seeing one of my favorite churches in Memphis, and that you will have a wonderful week ahead. I'll look forward to catching up with each of you when I'm back online!

All colored bold script should provide a clickable link for more information. Please click on the photo to see an enlarged version.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Bison Naptime

While driving through Shelby Farms last Sunday, we noticed that the herd of bison were taking a little siesta, right next to the fence. They have a large expanse of land for the herd, and they usually are fairly far away from the perimeter. It was fun to see them up close, even though they really didn't seem quite as interested in us.

I hope that you're having a great week so far. I've been unable to visit in the last few days due to my work schedule, and my father's second operation (which was a success!). I'm anxious to catch up, hopefully tomorrow.
All colored bold script should provide a clickable link for more information. Please click on the photo to see an enlarged version.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

USA Baseball Stadium, Millington, TN

USA Baseball Stadium in Millington, TN (just north of Memphis), was the training facility for the USA Olympic Baseball team from 1986-1996. It has always been so much fun to be able to see world-class baseball amidst the small-town charm of this stadium. We spent many a summer afternoon or evening here, and I think that my sons first fell in love with baseball here. My older son still asks to occasionally drive by is a place full of memories for us.
We have watched Troy Glaus, Jacque Jones, A.J. Hinch, Braden Looper, J.D. Drew, Matt LeCroy, Jim Parque, Travis Lee, Jeff Weaver, Adam Kennedy, R.A. Dickey, Augie Ojeda, Billy Koch, Scott Schoeneweis, and Mark Kotsay play as Olympians in the early part of their careers at this stadium. A list of USA Stadium alumni can be seen here. At that time, the USA players would live with host families in the area.
The stadium is still in use and is host to service academy, collegiate, and high school tournaments and championships.

Monday, March 10, 2008

W. C. Handy Statue, Beale Street

W. C. Handy is often called "The Father of the Blues", and he and his band moved to Memphis in 1909 to establish their musical presence on Beale Street. His famous song, "Memphis Blues", was originally titled "Mr. Crump", as it was written for then-Mayoral candidate Edward H. "Boss" Crump. It was so popular that he later rewrote it and changed the name to "Memphis Blues". It is considered by some to be the first blues song. You can read more about W. C. Handy here.
This is one of my favorite statues, not only on Beale Street, but in all of Memphis. (All colored bold script should provide a clickable link for more information. Please click on the photo(s) to see an enlarged version.)
edited to add: Annie asked this question: "I've always wondered if B. B. King named his guitar after W. C. Handy's first child. Do you know?"
Per Wikipedia: "One of his trademarks is "Lucille", the name he has given to his guitars since the 1950s after he escaped a fire at a juke joint he was playing in. The fire was started by two men who were fighting over a woman named "Lucille". During their fight, they knocked over the bucket of burning kerosene used for heat. When King escaped the building, he realized that he had left his guitar in the burning building. He ran back inside to get it and after learning of what happened, he named his guitar "Lucille" to remind himself not to do it again." You can read the entire entry here.

Sunday, March 9, 2008

Then & Now...St. George's Episcopal, One of 1000 Churches

This is the original building of St George's Episcopal Church in Germantown, dedicated in 1937. Prior to that, church members met in private homes. You can see how it looked years ago, in this undated photo below (credit: Images of America: Germantown, Russell S. Hall).
This building was later used as a chapel when a larger sanctuary was built, and now the church has an even newer facility at a different location (on S. Germantown Rd). The larger church facility on this property is now used for their elementary school, and they have also built a large high school complex at yet another location (on the Germantown/Collierville city limit line).
I just love this doorway, and I'm so glad that they've maintained this lovely chapel so well.
All colored bold script should provide a clickable link for more information. Please click on the photo to see an enlarged version.

Saturday, March 8, 2008

John Gray Historic House, Germantown

The J0hn Gray House is one of our favorite historic places, and is open to visitors several times a year. It is located in Germantown Municipal Park, right next to the Germantown Centre. Edited to add: Does this house look a bit tilted to you? You can see, from the level nature of the steps and the upright growth of the trees, that the photo was taken straight-on. Maybe someone who knows a bit more about building and architecture can shed some light on this.

The historic marker below gives more information than I could find in any other sources. Please click on the photo(s) to see an enlarged version.
Here are a couple of photos of Miss Daisy enjoying the snow. She loved it, and spent a lot of time running circles around the yard and rolling in it.

Here are a few more photos taken in our yard....
I hope that you're having a delightful weekend!

Friday, March 7, 2008

Snow Day...

Well, so much for our early Spring! Old Man Winter decided to show us that he still technically has domain over the season for the next two weeks...and to tell you the truth, I'm almost giddy. DS was thrilled just to get out of school two hours early, and is playing outside with Miss Daisy right now. We don't get as much snow in Memphis as we did about twenty years ago, and this snow is a pretty one. It is still snowing right now, and we are expected to receive about 3-4" here.

I couldn't decide which one photo I wanted to share, so I'm sharing two today. I thought that this Redbud looked pretty against the snow. Can you see the nest tucked in the crook of the branches?
I hope that you're having a nice start to your weekend! I will share some more snow photos tomorrow (including some of Miss Daisy).
Please click on the photo to see an enlarged version.

Thursday, March 6, 2008

More Kids & Horses

This is another young family that we met at the stables on Sunday. They were so sweet together, and were having such a good time.

As you can see, this little girl, probably about 2 or 3, wasn't quite sure about feeding the horses. Her parents did most of the feeding, but she finally joined in.

They reminded us of our own family when the boys were little years ago, and I took photos as fast as my point-n-shoot would allow. I asked for their email address and sent them all of the photos I took of their family. I hope that they enjoy the photos as much as I did taking them.
My son laughed at how this beautiful horse seemed to be very interested in what we were doing. He wandered up to the fence and stood there, just like you see below. My son said "well, he seems to want his photo taken, too, and this is what we shot. I didn't crop this in any way; he was right there, waiting...
So much for our balmy Spring days...we are expecting a few inches of snow tomorrow night! Such is the fickle weather in Memphis.

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Kids & Horses

Sunday was a very pretty day, and we took advantage of it. My older son was home from college for a visit, and our family had fun going all over town (can you say Spring Fever?). On the way home, we drove through Shelby Farms, which is "one of the largest urban parks in America", according to this entry on our county government's website. There are 4500 acres to roam, and always something fun going on. On any given day, you will see people biking, flying kites, riding in paddle boats, or riding horses.

Shelby Farms has a fairly large stable area, and you can purchase feed cubes for the older horses. Not only did we have fun feeding the horses, but also watching the people around us, particularly the little ones. Kids and animals just seem to naturally go together, don't they?

This young man was standing right next to us, and had the most gentle way with the horses...and they seemed to love him right back. He seemed particularly fond of this horse, and seeing them interact was a highlight of our day.
I know that a lot of you enjoy "people pictures" as much as I do, and I have some more very sweet, special ones to share with you again tomorrow.

All colored bold script should provide a clickable link for more information. Please click on the photo to see an enlarged version.

Monday, March 3, 2008

Spring's Almost Here...

Here is a sure sign of Spring in Memphis...Redbud trees in bloom, as seen here in the Belle Meade neighborhood.

I wish it were that pretty today in Memphis. We are currently experiencing thunderstorms (and have already lost power once), with colder weather and a chance to see a few snowflakes tomorrow. I hope that you're enjoying nicer weather where you are!

All colored bold script should provide a clickable link for more information. Please click on the photo to see an enlarged version.

Sunday, March 2, 2008

Baptist Memorial Hospital

Baptist Memorial Hospital on Walnut Grove Road was built in 1979. It originally was built as a suburban satellite hospital for the large Baptist Memorial Hospital System due to the growing suburban population at the time, and both of our sons were born there. The original Baptist Hospital in downtown Memphis was imploded on November 6, 2005, to make way for a bioscience research center (currently being built).

Baptist is a 706 bed hospital, and according to Health Grades ranked highest in Tennessee and in the top 5% nationally for cardiac surgery, stroke care and gastrointestinal surgery and procedures.

All colored bold script should provide a clickable link for more information. Please click on the photo to see an enlarged version.

Saturday, March 1, 2008

Evergreen Presbyterian, One of 1000 Churches

Memphis is often called "The City of 1000 Churches" or the "City of Churches". There are many beautiful places of worship in Memphis, and one of those is Evergreen Presbyterian Church.

Evergreen is a very active church in the heart of Midtown Memphis, near the Overton Park and the Memphis Zoo, and directly across from Rhodes College. I tried to find a founding date for this lovely church, but didn't have any luck even on their site. I do know that it's older than me, as my early childhood was spent in a neighborhood not far from this, and I took my first ballet and tap dance lessons in the recreation hall of this church.

This church has a very active outreach program, and also is the host site to the annual Memphis Scottish Festival, the Clanjamfry. This festival was always a favorite of my parents, and always attracts a big crowd and is quite colorful and fun. The parade of bagpipers and flag-bearers, all in kilts and their best finery, is quite a festive and beautiful sight. I will definitely be sharing photos of that in is wonderful!

All colored bold script should provide a clickable link for more information. Please click on the photo to see an enlarged version.