I am almost always awake long before The Mrs, and usually before the sunrises. Sometimes, The Mrs leaves me notes on the kitchen counter by the coffee pot because in my early morning routine I feed cats and make coffee right off. The notes could be information about something that occurred after I went to bed the night before, or a reminder about something important about to happen in the new day, or maybe a task or favor she would like for me to accomplish. So this morning there were 2 notes waiting for me.

This first was an informational note about someone who stayed up much later than she wanted to last night…

But the second was a stickie note next to her tea infuser with the command, “WATCH!!”. I watched that tea infuser for what must have been 20 minutes, but it did nothing… NOTHING AT ALL! So I am not sure what I was watching, but obviously I have already failed the day.


Thursday Doors – Archival Edition

I started cleaning & reorganizing the Man Cave this week, and in the process unearthed a box of my old photos. The “real kind”, like printed on photo paper from negatives! So of course, since old photos are more interesting than cleaning, I had a sit down and had a rifling-thru. In the process I found a small handful of pictures that I thought would work for a lame Thursday Doors entry (since I have been too lazy, I mean, too BUSY to go photograph new ones!)

Opel Kadett
1965 Opel Kadett Station Wagon. Circa 1975

My First Car. It sounded like a sewing machine when it ran….It had 3 doors….

1970 VW Bug
1970 Volkswagen Type 1 (aka BUG). Circa 1976

My first Volkswagen. I bought it for $999.00. It even had a cassette player!!! And only 2 doors.

1972 Volkswagen Type 2 (Transporter Van). Circa 1980.
1972 Volkswagen Type 2 (Transporter Van). Circa 1980.

My First Volkswagen Van. Notice the sunroof? I installed that. Notice the peace sign/bunny fingers poking up out of the sunroof? Those belong to my youngest sister, Ann!! This had 4 doors.

1985 Dodge Diplomat Squad Car. Circa 1986.

This was my first NEW squad car, issued to me in late 1985.  (4 doors). But there is more to point out in this picture. The red car in the driveway to the right was my landlord’s, and I eventually bought it from him (2 doors). And the beautiful Italianate house in the background was my landlord’s house (and you can even see a House Door in the front!). And if you look to the left side of the house, you will see a small outside staircase, which was my entrance to my 2nd story efficiency apartment! Only 1 door to the apt.

1980 Volkswagen Pickup
1980 Volkswagen Pickup. Circa 1990.

My First VW Pickup. I was actually able to fit in the cab and drive it!! I installed the sunroof myself… 2 doors, 3 if I can count the tail gate…

1974 Porsche (VW) 914 Roadster (foreground) & 1967 VW Bug (background). Circa 1991.

My First Real Sportscar! I loved this little firebreather!!!

The Bug was a Sunroof version, something I had always wanted… I paid $650 for it!

2 doors for each.

1974 Volkswagen Type 181 – The Thing. Circa 2019.

My current Volkswagen. I have owned at least one VW since I bought my 1970 Bug back in 1976! 4 doors!!

You can see more doors, like even REAL Buildings’ Doors, if you visit Norm at the following link, and check out everyone else’s doors in the links in the Comments!

NORM 2.0

Thursday Doors – Lake Springfield Beach House




The Beach House is located in Center Park, just north of Lindsay Bridge on the north end of Lake Springfield, Springfield, Illinois. The facility accommodates up to 215 people. It consists of two large rooms connected by a central foyer and contains two decorative fireplaces, a large outdoor patio, and a kitchen with a stove/oven, refrigerator, ice machine, and a serving counter. City Water Light & Power (CWLP) can provide tables and chairs for approximately 200 people. The Beach House is available for rent daily from 10 a.m.-10 p.m., April through December. A rental fee, security deposit (refundable provided no damages or excessive clean up), and a non-refundable deposit that is credited toward the rental fee are required. For an additional hourly fee, renters can choose to keep the building until midnight.

Beach House rental does not include access to the beach.

Beach Park is 4.78 acres. It is located across Long Bay Drive from Center Park and is adjacent to the Lindsay Bridge Boat Launch. The park has few amenities other than some picnic tables, but it offers a restful place to sit and enjoy a fabulous view of the lake.

The Beach House is handicap-accessible, as well as some other parts of Beach Park.

The above is taken from the Springfield, IL CWLP website.

The lower level of the Beach House has shower and locker facilities (or used to) and you can see the arched doorway opening onto the sand beach area in the center of the pictures. A 16 year old male (who couldn’t swim) drowned in the swimming area on July 14, 2007. The swimming facilities were shut down for the remainder of the 2007 season, did not reopen in 2008, and reopened in 2009 for only a very short time before being permanently closed.

The two arched doorways, on either side of the chimney, are boarded up as you can see, but the boards are removed (by city workers using power screwdrivers I believe) whenever the facility has been rented out. The same is true for the doorways on the park side of the facility.

Doors are the focus of Norm 2.0 every Thursday. You can see more doors at his website, HERE

Thursday Doors – French Lick Edition

Travel with me today  as we drive east from the center of Illinois into our neighboring state, Indiana. In my younger days, before the dawning of the Age of GPS, I would look at a paper map and choose a route based solely on the limited number of options the route entailed. For example here is a route that requires remembering only 3 roads… From Springfield, Illinois, if you take Interstate 72 east, when you get to Decatur, IL, US Route 36 morphs out of I-72. Keep going east on US 36 until you get to US Route 150, not to far from the Indiana border. Turn right and stay on this road into Indiana. You will pass through or near some interestingly named towns: Paris, New Goshen, Saint Mary of the Woods, Toad Hop, Fort Knox, Loogootee, Shoals, Rusk, West Baden Springs, and then our final destination, French Lick!

French Lick was originally a French Trading Post, located near a spring and a salt lick. In 1840, a health spa was opened to capitalize on the sulfur springs located here. French Lick in the 20th century was popular for the casino action here. The French Lick Resort Casino was renovated in 2005/6, and reopened as a 3000 acre complex split between French Lick and West Baden Springs.

Did someone say, “West Baden Springs”?  If so, then this is the right place for my Thursday Doors subject, doors at the periphery of the Grand Atrium of the West Baden Springs Hotel.  If you would like a good history of this hotel, The Mrs has a great recap over on her blog HERE

The doors I am highlighting are the doors that lead from the atrium to the Mineral Springs.


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Thursday Doors is a wondrous opportunity afforded to door-a-philes every week by Norm 2.0. His site is located HERE, and links to other doors worldwide are attached in the comments section…. Check it out!!



Thursday Doors – Galena Wrap-up

As promised, I am posting photos of some wonderful doors on some gorgeous houses from our Siblings’ Canadian Thanksgiving Holiday Adventure and Roadtrip to Historic Galena, Illinois, circa 2019.  I was going to have t-shirts printed up with that moniker, but we are all kinda too skinny to fit it on a single t-shirt, and there aren’t enough of us to print 1 word per shirt…. okay, Onward and Upward!

After The Mrs & I enjoyed a delicious repast at restaurant “Fried Green Tomatoes”, we decided to sally north from the historic downtown area and explore the residential area on the hillside above. On the map, you will note the Compass graphic in the lower right-hand corner, and you should also be able to locate Fried Green Tomatoes…

Galena Map

Up… This is the side of a cement stairway on Hill Street leading to the residential area. It was constructed in 1931.



And the view back down the stairs to downtown…. This stairway took us to Prospect Street where we conducted our residential doorway safari.


Our First Stop was in front of the Grace Episcopal Church because: 1) The Mrs is named Grace; 2) It has a wonderful red door; and 3) It illustrates the slanty-ness of the street!


West of there, and up the hill, we passed by the Lamberson Guest House. We both thought it looked inviting for a stay!


And we also admired the Edwards House;



and the Felt Manor Guest House;


and the quaint little Osprey’s Nest;



and this (apparently) unnamed home;


next to this (apparently) unnamed home;


next to THIS (apparently) unnamed home;


which took us to this “doubly-named” building, which WAS the High School, but is now apparently apartments/condos, “Galena Green Luxury Lofts”.


At this point, I was certain we were done with doors for the day, but as we walked down a wonderful little pathway to the west end of downtown, I spotted this door with a  fabulous companion round window hidden amongst trees and behind a huge stone wall and other obstructions. I stood on tip-toe and raised my camera over my head to get this image…


This little journey through Galena’s Door Land is inspired by Norm 2.0 and all the other Door-o-philes throughout the world who celebrate doors every Thursday. You can see Norm’s Doors and links to everyone else’s doors HERE.

Thursday Doors: Day-Trippin’ in Galena, Illinois

Before I start flooding your eyeballs with images of doors and a short discourse about Galena (Illinois) and galena (the mineral), I have to lay the groundwork by mentioning Canadian Thanksgiving. (I trust Norm will gently correct me if I get the last part wrong…)

The origins of Canadian Thanksgiving can be traced back to two events. The first Canadian appearance of the holiday dates back to 1578 when Martin Frobisher and his crew came together for a communal meal to thank God for reuniting the crew after they were separated due to bad weather. The second appearance dates back to 1606, when Samuel de Champlain organized the Order of Good Cheer to boost settler’s spirits after a dreadful winter. Under British rule, the holiday differed in theme and dates until January 1, 1957, when the Canadian Parliament officially declared the official date of Thanksgiving celebrations to be held on the second Monday of October. This date coincides much better with the actual date of Canadian harvests due to the arrival of winter. (More info at .

Over the years, Canadian Thanksgiving weekend has become the annual holiday get-together time for my family. This year, 4 out of 5 of my siblings & I (& spouses and children) gathered in northern Illinois where we grew up. On Sunday the 13th we drove to Galena, Illinois for the day. Before the doors though…

Galena, also called lead glance, is the natural mineral form of lead(II) sulfide (PbS). It is the most important ore of lead and an important source of silver. (Young, Courtney A.; Taylor, Patrick R.; Anderson, Corby G. (2008). Hydrometallurgy 2008: Proceedings of the Sixth International Symposium. SME. ISBN 9780873352666.)  Lead in the Galena, Illinois area was originally mined by members of the Sac and Fox tribes for use in body painting. French trappers in the 1690’s mined small quantities of lead. Retired US Army Colonel George Davenport shipped Galena’s first boatload of lead ore down the Mississippi River in 1816. Three years later a trading post was built in Galena that led to the first steamboat arrival in 1824. By 1845 Galena was producing nearly 27,000 tons of lead ore and Jo Daviess County was producing 80 percent of the lead in the United States. (

Ulysses S. Grant, future 18th President of the United States, was born in 1822 in Ohio. He enrolled at West Point in 1839, and made a career of the military until 1854. After resigning from the Army, he and his wife (Julia) and 4 children moved to a farm in the St. Louis, Missouri area. Farming was not Grant’s strong suit. They moved again in 1860, this time to Galena so Grant could work at his father’s tannery and leather goods store. With the outbreak of civil war in 1861, Grant was appointed Colonel of the 21st Illinois Volunteers. Following the cessation of hostilities, Grant returned to Galena in 1865. The citizens of Galena presented him with this wonderful home…

Grant home

On the backside of the house, to the right, is a small building with a smattering of displays relevant to the Grants, the US Presidency, etc. This door is a side door to this place.


After a quick tour of the Grant Home, we all headed down into town, through Grant Park where we split up to groups intent on discovery, or food, or warmth, or restrooms…


The Mrs. and I had wonderful meal at a restaurant called Fried Green Tomatoes. We sat at the table to the left, against the wall in this photo. I was sitting in the chair just under the “2”.  Across the street from us we admired a tall, and seemingly 2-D building. I noticed what looked like a white horse watching out over the street from a vantage point on the 3rd floor. Interestingly enough, there was a “For Rent” sign on the same floor…


At this point, we headed over to the Galena Visitor Center for a quick bathroom break before we headed up the hill for an orgy of doors… The hill excursion will have to wait until next week (soooooo many doors!)




A little used door in the side of the Visitor Center.


Finally, the side view of the Lemfco, Inc building, a foundry that opened in 1912 under the name Leadmine Foundry. The business was all about making iron based products to be used by the prosperous lead mining companies in Galena!

Until next week, you can see alot more doors from all over this planet by visiting Norm2.0 HERE….





Thursday Doors – is for the Birds…

Seems like since we went on our hiking trip to Glacier National Park last month that we only slow down and stay at home long enough to do laundry and reacquaint ourselves with our cats… And so, I offer the following door from a quick return trip for us to Starved Rock State Park. We headed north to northern Illinois in order to celebrate Canadian Thanksgiving with my siblings. We went up a day early so we could go hiking at the park and stay overnight, making our drive the next day a quicker and less tiring event…

And so, here is a door that we found in the lobby of the Check-in desk at Starved Rock. This is an antique Finch Cage. Not sure when it was acquired and placed in the lobby, and I forgot to take a picture of the information card. Note: there are no birds housed in here anymore.  So there it is… A Door For The Birds!!



More doors, whether for the birds or not, can be accessed by visiting Norm 2.0 HERE. Be sure to scroll down to his Comments section to see doors from around the world!!

Thursday Doors – Home Again

Following our return from our Glacier Nat’l Park trip, we had a few days back home to unpack, reacquaint ourselves with our kitties, do laundry, etc. etc. etc. Then we did a quick repack and headed to northern Illinois for my sister’s retirement party! She was always the SMART one… she is retiring with 2 pensions!! When I asked her what she was planning to do in retirement, she replied. “Art!” Just awesome, I would say.

After the party, we drove to Starved Rock State Park where The Mrs had made an overnight reservation for us in a cabin. We have stayed there a few times in the past, both in a cabin and in the Main Lodge. We have enjoyed our visits there, and of course, an old CCC constructed lodge is cool all in all. The cabin we stayed in turned out to be the exact same one we had stayed in previously in 2016 (and I posted the door from outside in Thursday Doors back then). Here is the door from INSIDE this time.


The entryway doors to the Lodge always impress me. These are to the lodging check-in  foyer…


Parked outside this entry way was another stunning door…


Thursday Doors happens every week, on Thursday (some kinda conspiracy it seems to me.) To see what doors are in store now & evermore, just go visit Norm 2.0 HERE!!!!!

Thursday Doors – Wind Down Doors


My Thursday Doors for this week feature the doors to our room during an overnight stay at the Glacier Park Lodge in East Glacier, Montana. We were on the Wind Down of a 2-week “active vacation”  (can a retired guy truly take a vacation?) wherein we had spent several days hiking in and around Glacier National Park. Background first, then doors, & a bit about our trip…

Construction on the Glacier Park Lodge was begun in 1912 after the Great Northern Railway negotiated the purchase of 160 acres of land from the Blackfeet Indian Reservation at the eastern base of Marias Pass in the Rocky Mountain Front in Montana. The Mrs and I stayed in the original part of the Lodge on the 2nd floor. Oh, and we chose to stay here because we traveled by train (Amtrak) from home (Springfield, IL) to Montana and back. The Lodge is located within spitting distance of the Amtrak Station in East Glacier, and a Frog-jump from The Dollar Car Rental, where I dropped off our rented car shortly before the Empire Builder train pulled into the station.

The first door is the room door as seen from the hallway, and it appears the latch handle may be the original latch! (Which means it is older than me!!)


Next, the same door from inside, and you can see the painted over transom above the door.


Directly opposite the hallway door is the door to the outside shared balcony.  This also appears to be the original door with the original latch. The deadbolt lock on the hallway door is pretty new, whereas the one on this door is pretty old.


Opening the balcony door reveals a screen door between the room occupant and the incredible view of the mountains!


Finally, lest I forget, the bathroom door!


Last thought – Glacier National Park in Montana runs right up to the Canadian border, and if you look north and east across the border and squint REAL hard, you just might see Norm 2.0 hard at work rallying door enthusiasts from around the globe every Thursday. You can see HIS preferred doors for this week HERE, and other door offerings will be found attached in the Comments Section of his posting… Check it out!!