Monday, June 30, 2014

The Grundy County Courthouse: Part 2

 When we returned to the courthouse, our auditor, Rhonda Deters, led us through the Clerk's Office and up a small back staircase into the judge's office.  A judge is there every Monday to hear short cases (30 minutes or less).  Longer cases have to be scheduled for other days.  

The Grundy County Courthouse: Part 1

A couple Thursdays ago, my family and I visited the Grundy County Courthouse.  Our county auditor, Rhonda Deters, had kindly arranged with the custodian, Mark Jungling, to give us a tour of the clock tower! 

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Pizza Hut

Last evening after a long day's work my family travelled to Iowa Falls for a pizza supper.  It was around 8 pm when we arrived, and the place was deserted except for the staff and a group of linemen from Minnesota who came in not long before we left.  We thought it was odd for the restaurant to be empty, but it could be due to the fact that most Iowans in our area seem to eat supper between 5 and 6:30 pm.  
Deep-Dish Barbecue Pizza

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

The Basilica of St. Francis Xavier

The Basilica of St. Francis Xavier in Dyersville was one of our stops on our trip to Northeast Iowa.  Almost all of the towns in that area, no matter how small, seem to have huge Catholic churches, almost as if they had a competition to see who could build the most impressive church.  

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

When Trouble Comes

Shortly after 2 a.m. the other morning our chickens were in an uproar, cackling alarmedly, as a black-masked intruder sauntered into the coop and began his work of terror.  His first goal: a drumstick for dinner.  His first intended victim: a Barred Rock hen named Midnight.  He was on the prowl for a midnight snack.

Then a figure approached out of the shadows: a savior!  A switch was flicked and a single, bare incandescent bulb illumined the room.  The masked intruder (commonly known as a racoon) scurried away into the dark night, taking with him nothing but an empty stomach and a few fluffy, speckled feathers.  
Walking raccoon
From Flickr

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Ivory Palaces

Ivory Palaces was the favorite hymn of a dear friend who is now with the Lord.  It's a beautiful song full of meaning.
My Lord has garments so wondrous fine; and myrrh their texture fills;
Its fragrance reached to this heart of mine with joy my being thrills.
The Lord is clothed in glory, and he wants to cover us with his garments of righteousness.  In Zechariah 3, God commanded that the filthy garments be taken away from Joshua the high priest and that he be clothed in clean garments.  He wants to do that for each one of us also, taking away our sins and filling our hearts with his Holy Spirit.  

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

I'll Pay You on Tuesday

Small business owners learn a lot about people.  They learn what type of people are good customers and which are bad customers.  They know the best way for you to get a good deal and to motivate them to give you the best service.  They also remember all the ways people have tried to cheat them...and could recommend a few lines for the ungrateful customer *not* to use.

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

The Princess Grill and Pizzeria

The Princess Grill and Pizzeria has adorned downtown Iowa Falls for 99 years.  A sign reading "Air Conditioned" welcomes visitors; a waitress told us that many years ago few places were air conditioned, so the Princess was a great place to escape on a hot summer day.

Monday, June 9, 2014

The Wapsipinicon Feed Mill and Dam

On our way home from making another concrete pad delivery, we stopped in Independence, Iowa to visit the Wapsipinicon Feed Mill and Dam which is now a museum.

The mill was built in 1867 by Samuel Sherwood and served the community for over 100 years.  It has 6 stories, but only two of them are open to the public as a museum.  From the lower floor through a small glass window you can see into the floor where the water enters the building.

Thursday, June 5, 2014

The Ackley Soda Fountain

The first time I remember visiting the Ackley soda fountain was on the evening of July of 2006 after listening to the MacDonald Family Singers sing at the bandshell.  The music at the concert was (for lack of a better description) simply awesome, and the park was packed with people, but it was blistering *hot!*  And since for some reason bandshells face the east, the musicians suffered with the sun in their eyes.  The mosquitoes started coming out for dinner after the concert to, so the soda fountain was the perfect place to escape to for ice cream!