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It has been the usual summer in the Washington, DC area with high heat and high humidity followed by storms that temporarily blast the humidity away and make things pleasant outside until the high heat and high humidity reasserts its dominance over the area. The one consequence of this weather has been a few white mushrooms growing in the grass.

#mushrooms grow after heavy rainstorms.

#mushrooms grow after heavy rainstorms.

#mushrooms grow after heavy rainstorms.

Not too long ago I saw this vintage yellow vintage Volkswagen bus parked in a parking lot. I can remember when my late aunt and uncle owned a Volkswagen bus for a few years which they used to drive to my parents’ home when I was a kid. (My aunt and uncle had four daughters, which was why they even owned the Volkswagen bus in the first place.) It has literally been years since I’ve seen a Volkswagen bus anywhere on the streets so it was a bit of a surprise to see a yellow bus with a large peace sign in the front.

Vintage Volkswagen Bus

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I’ve been messing up on my New Year’s resolution to create new drawings in this tiny sketchbook on a regular basis. I’ve gone from doing a new sketch every day to doing one once a week to now only doing one when I realize “Oh, shit, I haven’t drawn anything new in my little sketchbook in ages!”

How bad has it gotten? I only did a total of two sketches in March. This one I did while I was at a church retreat and I had previously posted about it in this blog.

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The other March drawing was one that I did after I played around with the dice from Rory’s Story Cubes until I found the inspiration for this drawing. (Yes, it’s a monkey wearing a jeweled necklace and carrying a whip riding on the back of an elephant through a field of mushrooms outside the big top tent where they perform in a traveling circus.)

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As for doing anything for April, I ended up not getting around to it until the middle of the month. It was a warm and sunny Saturday when I decided to hang around at Roosevelt Center in the historical section of Greenbelt, Maryland. I decided to try my hand at sketching the large Mother and Child statue that’s on the plaza. I did the outline in black ink and colored it in using a pencil.

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Here’s a photograph I took of the same statue recently so you can compare my drawing with the original.

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And, finally, here’s a drawing I did as a tribute to the recently deceased Prince.

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I did a two-page spread just like I did for David Bowie when he died a few months earlier. Of course I used purple as a dominant color because it’s Prince. As for the words on the page, they were taken from the song “Strollin’,” which can be found on the Diamonds and Pearls CD.

There was this massive raging thunderstorm that struck our area on June 20 complete with thunder and lightning and loud heavy pounding rain. That thunderstorm capped a day where the temperature rose to the low 90’s with very high humidity.

The following morning it was relatively cool until the afternoon when the high heat and high humidity came back with a vengeance. I quickly took a couple of nature photos outside then retreated to my air conditioned home. It was basically a laid back alternative to taking part in observing Father’s Day (especially since my own father had passed away in 2000).

Here’s a view of the Beltsville Agricultural Research Center, which looks pretty bucolic despite the very hot weather.

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I also came across some mushrooms that suddenly sprung up among the grass. These mushrooms seemed to form a line formation all the way to the outer edges of the sidewalk.

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These mushrooms were big and plump. I’m not surprised that they appeared given the recent weather where nearly every day there would be high heat and high humidity throughout the day that would lead to this violent thunderstorm by the evening. I took a couple closeup shots of one of the mushroom clusters to give you an idea as to how big they were in real life.

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