"Carnegie Car Wash"
Saturday, October 14th

The Car Wash

The Chorale and Women's Chamber Choir put on a Car Wash fundraiser at the New Starbucks off San Fernando (by Green Thumb). Then we had thunderstorms last night.

We got plenty of time to figure out our next fundraiser, but I think we'll plan a little further in advance for the next one. (Explanation needed - I'm the Vice President of Chorale, thus I head up the planning for socials and fund raisers along with Elissa the Chorale Secretary.)

A car wash seems somewhat (whispered) junior highish - but actually it really fit well. By college just about everyone has been involved in one so the planning isn't that hard and not only do you make a good deal of money but it's just plain great fun. Most important on the logistics side it was a good opportunity for us officers to get coordinated in our efforts together so when we take on the larger projects we have planned we're not just a committee of buffoons. (I just wanted to say buffoons cause it's a cool word - but it really is a little intense don't you think?) I was very encouraged as well to see what an incredibly excited and giving chorale we have this year. Everyone was there having a great time and so many people stepped forward to serve in the preparations for the car wash. This is going to be a great year both in our musical abilities and in fellowship together!

On the fundraiser side it really worked well also. We were really praying it wouldn't rain! The forecast was likely rain, but like I mentioned it came that night. We actually had some great sun and the time of day, 2-6 PM, along with the clouds made for some great lighting for photos. The most important part of our fundraiser however was the interaction we had with our local community. We had some great opportunities to talk with people and invite them to come to our concerts here on campus. Sure it was strange to see a bunch of people standing on a curb in tuxedos holding a sign and singing Car Wash (and in the case of Randy... moving rhythmically while singing whole musicals he had composed in his mind on the spot) but we really turned a fundraiser cliché into something unique and were able to share a very original message.

I had a lot of fun with the posters and the photo shoot we did for the car wash before hand. Here they are below - I'll post the link to photos from the Car Wash once I have those available to the public on the Chorale website.

Just a few fun facts - Dr. Plew called Kevine Malone, the past manager of the Dodgers who owns a Mercedes dealership and we got to use their car wash truck. Humerously we ran out of water right at the end and had to use buckets for the last couple cars. (The truck uses soft water so we couldn't just fill it up with hard water that corrodes everyone's paint job.)

The shot for the campus email. Does the waterfall look familiar? If not check the you might check the archives. : )

The poster

Where we're headed (Carnegie Hall) and I know it's out of proportion.

Hopefully you recognize this picture. President Bush said we could use the white house lawn any time. We can't use the parking lot of course cause the soap flows down the storm drains, but they keep the grass cut pretty short so it wasn't to bad.

It's time for me to finish my full schedule for this semester. If I have time I may head out to Vasquez rocks this evening. Here's some more photos from the car wash.

 

- Josh Wheeler

P.S. I've begun signing my name because when I write Joshua Wheeler and Josh Wheeler it helps me get better search engine rankings for my own name - Josh Wheeler. Which really doesn't matter... except that it's kind of fun! : )

 

 

"Autumn (& Alpacas)"
October 9th, 2006

Back at College

Rachel and I arrived back at college this morning or last night, depending on how you view 1:45am. Much thanks to cousin Brian for picking us up from LAX! We won't be seeing Minnesota for a long time now, at least not in person. I've got plenty of photos though of the beautiful fall colors and yes... the promised photos of the alpacas. (They're quite the critters.)

Since I didn't get a chance to put these last few photos up from MN I'm going to go ahead and let this update meamble back through the Saturday before we left. They're really far more exciting than... well, I don't have any pictures from today anyway. Saturday is a good day to relive - especially since I'm sure you'll laugh when you see the Alpaca pictures (I know Grandma will : )

Saturday, October 7th

Morning bike ride

I got up not so early in the morning (the sun was already up) and then decided to take a quick bike ride.

horses - photographer Joshua Wheeler

Some horses pastured in a pasture along the road. Certainly not an uncommon sight - and one of my favorites.

Amidst my stopping my bike and hopping off with a camera around my neck, a vest with pockets of lenses, a flash and filters and a tripod dangling from a clip on my vest about waste high this goose almost waddled out of site. I had to snap a really quick shot - thus the reason the composition of the photo is somewhat lacking.

This is the lake across the street from the culdesac our house is on. I took a route that brought me to the house; I tossed my bike in the back of our truck and caught a short ride back to the apartment with dad.

Alpacas

I don't really have much to say - except I think I know what kind of farm Dr. Seuss grew up on. Yep, Alpacas aren't Llamas (that was a factual error in my last post... and I knew that, I just figured they were pretty close to Llamas. Nope) Imagine ET as a furry camel.

OK, enough jokes about Alpacas. Suffice to say, they're really cute; and they act as cute as they look.

A couple of rebelious teenagers with their well trimmed haircuts. OK, actually these are babies who haven't been around long enough to grow full locks of hair yet. They're really sweat.

Are any celebrities coming to mind? - Unfortunately I don't really know any celebrities names - but can't you just see a hollywood hairstylist visiting an Alpaca farm and saying - "THAT's IT! Zee fresh knu look I have been zerching my whole life for, and now it is placed before my vewy eyes." And then the 'I'm so cool I don't need to be able to see because I don't actually move all day' look sweeps america... I've got it. The name for my new rock band - "The Alpacas"!

One of the babies chewing on some grass. Alpacas are cool. I like personality - and they've got plenty of it.

The Osceola Train Ride

I love trains - and we took an incredible train ride along the St. Croix river. Autumn was a perfect season because many trees had lost there leaves and so we could see through to the river, when normally the trees would have allowed a limited view of it.

A waterfall we stopped at before boarding the train. Waterfalls don't really dry up during the summer in Minnesota...

Below are a couple shots of a Beaver dam we could see from the train. It's incredible to see just how big Beaver dams really are.

Bringing the engine to the other side of the train for the trip back.

Below are some photos of O' Brien State Park - which the train travels right through.

The little town of Osceola in Wisconsin where the train departs from.

We stopped at Lake Alice in O' Brien as the sun was setting before getting some dinner at a Bar and Grill in town.

After we came out from dinner the moon was framed behind the pines picture perfect - so I took some pictures.

 

 

"Harvest Moon"
October 6th, 2006

Here's some photos from today. There are so many stories to tell, but it's already quite late tonight.

My bike ride to O' Brien State Park this morning

Joshua Wheeler

Joshua Wheeler

Joshua Wheeler

Joshua Wheeler

Joshua Wheeler

Every time a cheerful gust of wind rushes into the forest to hide from the clouds the leaves join into the fun and leap from the trees swirling all around. One of them decided to fit its self neatly upon my tripod.

Joshua Wheeler

Joshua Wheeler

Wheels

Wheeler

Joshua

Josh

Josh Wheeler

 

Pictures from Nate and my ride this afternoon

Josh Wheeler

The Lutheran Church on the corner of our town's intersection

Joshua Wheeler

The girls thought it would be nice to tour a museam and then take pictures of all of the Dolla Häst in our town… so Nate and I decided to go for a bike ride. (Actually the museum looked really fun - but I looked both ways very carefully several times before snapping this picture really quick. For self-image sake I think the bike ride was the right choice - and it was incredible!)

Joshua Wheeler

Joshua Wheeler

Joshua Wheeler

Joshua Wheeler

Joshua Wheeler

Joshua Wheeler

Look familiar? We rode on some back roads (meaning we saw maybe... at least I think we saw a car?) to the lake across the street from our house and then rode back down to the main road (meaning if you're really patient and quiet you might see some cars). We passed our in construction house and then this pond - of which I have taken, shall we say, quite a few photos.

Joshua Wheeler

 

Harvest Moonrise above the St. Croix River

Joshua Wheeler

Joshua Wheeler

Joshua Wheeler

Joshua Wheeler

Joshua Wheeler

Joshua Wheeler

Nate and I had a little fun with my camera on thirty second exposure.

Goodnight or goodmorning, tomorrow some pictures of Stillwater and the Alpaca Farm (i.e. Llamas).

- Joshua Wheeler

 

"Fall"
October 5th, 2006

Tomorrow is harvest moon, but the moon is round and bright tonight as well. I'm sitting in the second story of our apartment in Minnesota. My sister and I left LAX wednesday at 1:00am and got here about 6:00am. We didn't want to lose any of our time back here, and that's the only time Sun Country flies from LA to MSP. Thanks to Shane and Elizabeth for dropping us off at the Van Nuys fly away. (They've remodeled and it's an incredible facility - but do bring cash to purchase your $3 ticket to LA - that's all the ticket machines take.) How many times did we sing 'I'll Fly Away'? - it was Shane's suggestion.

Wednesday we went to see the house construction (Rachel's first time ever). Progress has been made since I last saw it - the whole downstairs has been framed and it's really starting to take shape. This friday the siding arrives and the sheetrock is going up soon. We did alot, but if I'm getting up for the sun rise I need to go to bed, so I'll just post photos real quick. (They're more fun anyway.)

These were taken on our paddle boat ride down the St. Croix today and in Pothole park. That's right - a whole park dedicated to potholes. (Potholes are deep holes in the rock cliffs above the St. Croix, some of which are over 60 ft deep.) Unfortunately, if you were looking forward to seeing pictures of the potholes, I mostly took pictures of the gorious fall colors - because incredibly cool as they are it's kinda hard to take a shockingly majestic pictures of deep holes in a rock.

One last paragraph! - FALL! fall, FaLL, Fall fall... what an amazing season! The air is brisk but not cold, the sun is bright, and the world is filled with the fragrance of freshly fallen leaves and damp bark and all the other wonderful smells of the forest. Time loses its urgency and you feel no pressures closing in on you. You don't ask how long a walk was and the question, "what time is it?" doesn't really come to your mind. All around you God's creation is preparing for winter and you are caught up in that sense of anticipation, in a non urgent manner. You know something wonderful is coming, when the first snow will cover the world all around and transform it into an amazing - you know the cliche - winter wonderland; but you can't make it happen any faster, so why worry. And yes, if the feeling of fall that drifts lightly through the air isn't enough to distract you from hurry - the trees, bushes, shrubs and vines will. You are surrounded by the brighest reds and oranges and yellows. Under your feet leaves rustle and crunch softly and in the blue sky above geese and ducks, and sometimes even a hawk or eagle, are if not glimpsed then heard. The overload of colors seen for so short a time of the year suddenly overwhelms you and you think about what is around you and what you are doing. The present takes the future - standing in open mouth amazement - and gently sits it down behind the curtain and takes its rightful though brief place solo, at center stage.

 

Joshua Wheeler

Our cozy little upstairs apartment

Joshua Wheeler

Our next door neighbors

Joshua Wheeler

The St. Croix River
and views from the river below

Josh Wheeler

Joshua Wheeler

Joshua Wheeler

Look closely at this photo for one of the majestic rulers of the river.

Josh Wheeler

Josh Wheeler

Josh Wheeler

So whose going to get married here so I can take their wedding photos on this perfect bridge?

Josh Wheeler

This pictures begs explanation - so ask me about it sometime... just kidding. This has been named by Rippley's believe it or not the most realistic natural rock formation in the US. (Or something along those lines.) You can go rock climbing up his face if you want.

Enjoy the last two photos below of FALL!

Joshua Wheeler

Joshua Wheeler


- Josh Wheeler

Isaiah 65:17
"For behold, I create new heavens and a new earth;
And the former shall not be remembered or come to mind."

 

 

 

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For updates on the house construction check - The Wheeler Family Website.

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"A While Back"
Tuesday, October 24th

The following photos are from back at the beginning of this semester, when bible study went to Mammoth for retreat. Maybe some day I'll tell the story, but there's more to explain than this... and I'm not actually sure I could explain it.

the Mountain

Till later,

Josh Wheeler

P.S. If the first paragraph was perhaps the king of vague statements here's a little more of the story. I climed a mountain and took pictures. Why? well... that's the part that's hard to explain. I really like climbing mountains for the challenge and especially for the views. It's amazing to be looking out over mountains and valley's from a place where I'm sure few have been before. But there's a lot more to say about climbing mountains than that, especially in regards to time. Sometimes I wonder if it's the air at higher altitudes that seems to slow time down?

 

 

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