Monday, July 4, 2011

Watching the Missouri River Rise


Pop open a cold one and watch the river rise.  In small towns across Missouri, people are gathering by the edge of the river expressing concerns about levies holding, wondering how high the water will rise and sharing stories of the '93 flood.  

My husband and I kept getting off the beaten path of I70 on our weekend trip across Missouri to see what the Missouri River was doing.   

Along the Katy Trail in Rocheport, preparations are underway to help protect this section of the trail and houses on the other side.

Rising water is already encroaching on a playground along the trail.

A stream used to take water away from the town of Rocheport to the Missouri River.  Now, it is flowing backwards and bringing the river to the town.

Prior to being flooded, a bridge led hikers to a trail with marshlands.  Once the water recedes, will the marshlands be closer to the trail?  

Just beyond this tunnel, the Katy Trail is closed for a stretch.  

On higher ground in Rocheport, a wedding party overlooks the full river.  Atop a bluff at the Les Bourgeois Vinyards, the only risk to the couple and guests was the sweltering heat from the temperatures rising close to 100 degrees at the Saturday afternoon wedding.

It may be a long time until the flag is lowered at the flooded park in Waverly, Missouri.  The waters from the 1993 flood came and went quickly.  This time the water is expected to stick around for many weeks.

Where Highway 13 years ago crossed the Missouri River in Lexington, the valley is now flooded including the train tracks. 

It was in Lexington, Missouri where we met a young woman from Kansas City.  On the other side of the river is her brother's house.  While he is in Norway jumping from a mountain in a wingsuit, water is threatening his house.  With his belongings safely moved to higher ground, he's focused on flying along the side of the mountain (video of his jump).  

Our journey came to an end in Lexington, Missouri on Sunday at the place where the river covered Highway 224 as the sun was setting. 

Monday, February 21, 2011

How many days until spring?

Friday was a beautiful day in Kansas City.  I spent the day seeing customers, handing out price books and talking about new plants at the nursery.  

At the end of the day I was in the Crossroads District, just minutes away from the Kauffman Memorial Gardens, and realized it was time to stop talking about plants and time to go see some.  

The doors were wide open at the garden's conservatory and the sweet scent of gardenias and orange blossoms filled the air.

Gazing balls reflect the view of the sky from the windows above.  Light streaming in from the windows at the front of the conservatory shines through the petals of the flowers of the Euryops.  

If you too are wondering how many days there are until spring and need a plant fix, a visit to the Kauffman Memorial Gardens will probably help.
On the way to the conservatory, don't rush too quickly past the plants in the gardens outside.  Even in the winter, there is plenty to see.  The copper colored exfoliating bark of the China Snow Lilac glows.  I love the lines of the twisted trunk in the middle photograph.  Deciduous female holly plants have bright red fruit all winter long. 

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Thinking of Hawaii while there's a blizzard outside

The schools and airport are closed and a blizzard warning continues through noon  tomorrow.  With a foot of snow on the ground, more snow coming down, and the wind chill at one below, it seems like a good time to think about a much warmer place.  Such as Hawaii!  

While in Kauai, we drove past the Immaculate Conception Catholic Church many times before taking the time to stop.  Though it's never in the plans, my husband and I always seem to find a church or two to visit while on vacation.  
The inside is as beautiful as the outside.  

When we first walked in the church an elderly woman walked up to the statue of Mary.  She knocked on the base of it with her fist several times before praying.  I could just imagine her saying "Mary, are listening to me, can you hear me, are you paying attention, I've gotten something to tell you..." 

The grounds of the church are also lovely.  Though probably wrong of me, I kept thinking they must have a really good priest and choir to get people to pay attention while inside.  I would be tempted to stay outside and pull weeds, smell the flowers and listen to the service through an open window.   


The plants are as colorful as the stained glass windows.  Visiting this church and saying a prayer was a wonderful stop on a busy day of sight seeing.  Maybe that's why we end up visiting churches while on vacation.  No doubt, God knows we aren't good at slowing down, even while on vacation.  


Monday, January 3, 2011

Button, button

 Button, button, who's got the button?

Inspired by a display of button bracelets at Broadway & Penn, it was finally time to do something with my grandma's buttons.  They have been stored for years in old jelly jars.  First in her attic and more recently in my basement.  

I love the colorful buttons.  They remind me of the happy faces of pansies and Grandma's garden.  There were always volunteer pansies and violas popping up somewhere in her yard.

My daughter prefers the metal buttons and hers has the look of a charm bracelet.  Spending time with my daughter making the bracelets was a wonderful way to finish up the year and talk about the past while dreaming of the future.