Posted in USA National Parks

Colorado’s Ancestral Puebloan Culture

Ancient Pueblo cliff dwelling in Mesa Verde National Park, Colorado

Hovenweep National Monument, Canyon of the Ancients National Monument, and Ute Mountain Tribal Park are all sites tourists may visit when they travel Southwestern Colorado’s Mesa Verde National Park to explore Ancestral Puebloan culture.

Guides take expectant visitors deep into cliff dwelling sites at Eagle Nest House, Casa Blanca, and Casa Colorado in half-day, whole-day, or once-a-year tours.

Do you have a national parks experience, or thoughts on the parks?

Please share them in the comments section!

(BONUS TRIVIA: Mesa Verde National Park is home to close to 5,000 ancient vistas. TRUE or FALSE?
ANSWER: True!)

Photo courtesy of


Posted in USA National Parks

Three States Share Yellowstone National Park

Yellowstone National Park houses 67 species of mammals. From the hamster-like Pika to the Moose and Mountain Lion, Yellowstone has an impressive array of animals to enjoy.

Raise your own style of thanks for the acres of Yellowstone that cover the corners of the states of Wyoming, Idaho, and Montana.


Yellowstone ranks No. 1 among the 60 national parks in the United States for wildlife viewing!


Have you visited Yellowstone?

Please share your experiences, or thoughts, in the comments section!

(BONUS Trivia: What two desert parks does photographer QT Luong describe as both on his list of the quietest areas he’s visited?
ANSWER: Capitol Reed National Park and Canyonlands National Park, both located in Utah!)

Photos of Yellowstone National Park courtesy of

Posted in Gratitude, Thank You

Thank You — Gratitude – 20 — Vets

It’s no secret that American Veterans saved the world in playing the most major part to end World War II.


But our gratitude toward them seems to hide in the closet for most of the year; then it’s brought forth profusely on military holidays, and at other celebrations with our own families.

Let’s go more public for our Vets — Yes, capital “V” !

Did you thank a Vet yet this year on any day other than today — Memorial Day, 2018?


Thank you, Veterans of America, for carrying our flag into battle and securing my life as it exists today! I was six months old when my own father (1924-2011) returned from a world of war to a life of peace.

What would you like to write about concerning veterans, or a Vet in your family?

Please share your thoughts in the comments section!

(BONUS Trivia: How long did it take Gutzon Borglum and, eventually, his son to sculpt the four Presidential facial figures that became the famous work at Mount Rushmore?
ANSWER: 16 years!)

Photo from the personal and copyrighted collection of Barbara Anne Helberg

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Posted in Being Grateful

Thank You — Gratitude – 19 — July 4th American Style

Black and White Flags!

I’m grateful for July 4th in America! We are a free, United States of America!

I’m a Buckeye (Ohioan) born and raised, but I’m an American, first!

I’m growing older, but I’m still the child who was loved by her parents and taught to respect others and do right, rather than wrong, because the difference impacts all those around me — first!

I’m a farmer’s daughter, a believer in conservation, because this Earth is all we have in the universe — first!

What can you share, or write about, on the subject of July 4th in America?

Please use the comments section to share your thoughts!

(BONUS Trivia: Manish Mamtani, who grew up in central India, was inspired to photograph American national parks at night when he came to the United States to live and found that most Americans can’t get a view of the Milky Way. TRUE, or FALSE?
ANSWER: True!)

Photo from the personal and copyrighted collection of Barbara Anne Helberg

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Posted in Being Grateful, Thank You

Thank You — Gratitude-18 — Passionate Letter Writers


Letters to the Editor may seem of no real importance at first mention, but when one stops to consider these efforts are born of the right of free speech, reevaluation may be in order.

Passionate men of letters, for whom I am forever thankful, helped form our United States of America.

+ The Articles of Confederation
+ The Declaration of Independence
+ The American Constitution
+ The Bill of Rights

Without the continuation of knowledge on, and support for, these documents of freedom, American freedom cannot stand.

These are also passionate reminders that freedom is not free. Freedom is a continuous work in progress, which we must be willing to protect. It must be nurtured throughout every generation of Americans to ensure its success.

Is your writing passionate? Can you get to the core of freedom through your pen?

Please share your thoughts on this post’s opinions with your own in the comments section!

(BONUS Trivia: Who said the National Park System “is one of the first great American inventions”?
ANSWER: QT Luong, who has photographed all 60 national parks over 25 years!)

Photos from the personal and copyrighted collection of Barbara Anne Helberg

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Posted in Saying Thank You

Thank You — Gratitude-17 — My Computer

Steady computer operator companions

I’m so grateful for my computer when I haven’t slept a wink, or three, and, of course, for my computer companions — coffee, tea, or an instruction book!

Thank you wee-hour companions, for being there steady as a rock! Without you, I couldn’t get through those last five hours of the morning! Oh, yes, and I’m thankful for eye drops!

I intensely disliked the emergence of the computer era, being the type (no pun intended) that still enjoys a pen/pencil and paper under a maple tree.

And so, I went screaming to the new technology of word-processing, but now I can type-write proficiently. However, a step up to geek-ness is out of the question!

Are you a computer geek; a writing geek; a regular typing writer? What’s your writing preference?

Please share your thoughts in the comments section!

(BONUS Trivia: Becky Lomax, who wrote Moon USA National Parks set for release in October of 2018, said of which national park, “…I knew it had wildlife, but it has lots of wildlife.”
ANSWER: Theodore Roosevelt National Park in North Dakota!)

Photo from the personal and copyrighted collection of Barbara Anne Helberg

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Posted in Being Grateful

Thank You — Gratitude-16 — Ned Garver and Others

Who needs help today? What can you contribute?

Ned Garver, a Major League Baseball pitcher from the tiny town of Ney, Ohio, which is nestled between the Northwest Ohio farm cities of Bryan and Defiance, passed away Sunday, February 26, 2017.

Ned gave back to his community. And that’s what I’m grateful for today. I’m grateful for the successful who rededicate their lives to their home towns. After his baseball retirement, Ned served his little berg as mayor, council member, and park board associate.

For 14 years, after all the celebrity and hoop-la, he held a job at a company in his home area. He knew his farm community people.

Celebrities and sports figures regularly appear on the American landscape as integral parts of their hometowns.

Acts of kindness, community service, and giving go on year round in our country, not loudly and with fanfare, but with sincerity and dignity in serving humbly. These are the attributes and the acts that make it worthwhile for humans to know one another.

And I’m grateful for that.

Is there a miracle person in your life? Have you witnessed kind acts of a generous celebrity? Is there something in your pen, or keyboard, trying to burst out on this subject?

Please share your thoughts in the comments section!

(BONUS Trivia: Which two states have the most national parks within their borders?
ANSWER: Alaska and California both have eight different parks!)

Photo courtesy of

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