Sunday, September 13, 2015

I seldom put anything of interest on here, but I'm seriously worried about a land that I call home. A land that I am not living in because of my husband's job. It terrifies me to what I will find when we get our next assignment back in the United States of America. I've been visiting this great nation for a few months now while we tackled health issues that could not be addressed in Chile. In the few short years that we have been gone it is absolutely frightening how this nation has slid down that slippery slope.

The old story goes: Put a frog in a pot of boiling water and turn up the heat gradually. He won't notice he is being cooked alive until it is too late. We as a nation are "the frog" and society as a whole is "the pot of boiling water." It will soon be too late for us, it will soon be all over. When you are in the middle of the pot, it is hard to see the steam rising all around you. But, the bubbles are there, popping here, popping there, quickly darting up and down in the water before you can scarce turn around to notice them. They are there, just too fast to do anything about them.

How about we dowse the fire that is causing the heat? How about we take out some of the burning embers? How about we add back in some ice to cool things off a bit and restore some order to the water before it all boils right over!

This is why I wrote this post on Facebook. I don't know if anyone will ever even read it. But, I hope it will help others see that This Nation Is Not Normal! It Is Not Progressing in a Positive Direction. We need to all band together to work towards taking our Country, our Freedoms, our Sense of Self-Pride Back and putting it on a Better Course. Thank You.

911 - What is your emergency? Isn't that interesting that it was also chosen as THE DAY for America's Greatest Emergency? I don't think this was just random chance. Our most valiant Emergency Workers - Lost - in a matter of a few minutes trying to save ordinary citizens. Terrorists making a mockery of a system that was put in place to HELP others, and it ultimately took the rescuers' lives. Every time we are in trouble, all we have to do is call 911. We have trained personnel running to help us. The terrorists tried to destroy that assurance, that helping attitude. After the attacks, America pulled together as never before, neighbor helping neighbor, WITHOUT being asked. Sadly, we have forgotten what the terrorists were trying to achieve. We are destroying the system from within our own country with attacks on our own rescue workers, the police. The terrorists are winning without lifting a finger. We cannot let this happen. 911 stands for a lot more than "What is your emergency?" It needs to stand for America being united anything that can divide and conquer this great nation. It needs to stand for Never Letting It Fall.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Happy Fathers Day

Mike saved his birthday/fathers day tie to wear for fathers day and proudly announced for anyone that was interested exactly what was on the tie. Lots of people came up to look at it and didn't even have to have it explained before he even tried.

They, of course, all said, "AWWWW....." and commented on how clever it was and how cute the grandkids were. We had to agree even if we were a little biased.

All the little stamps of color are the same photograph of the the four grandkids taken together when the Websters went down to AL to visit with the Smiths. It was the very first time all the cousins had been all together. How precious to memorialize it in a gift that their grandpa can be proud to wear anytime! Great thinking! Two views to see - far away and up close to see how cool the tie really is (and how handsome their grandpa is!). Thanks kids!

Saturday, June 20, 2009

New Stove & Kitchen Preparation

It all started with trying to clean the stove.

I should tell you that living in an old farm house can be adventurous. Upon our arrival, I discovered our stove was a cooktop, but the controls for it were on the vent hood and that they were push buttons. More than once I thought I had turned things off only to discover that I had instead turned them onto high (DUH!).

Anyway, I was lifting up my favorite big burner to clean underneath it when I discovered the insulation surrounding the wire from the control to the actual burner had some breaks in it and I was worrried that a breakage in the wire might be next.

We had a housing inspector come out and inspect all the farm houses and the stove got a grade of a "D". When we took the cooktop out of the wall we discovered that the wood around the two big burners had already started to burn under the tile countertop. SO glad we decided to replace the cooktop, eh?

In the meantime, new cooktops are pretty pricey, so we tried a different approach. Since I already HATED the wall oven that I had (it was too small, too high for short little me, and I had burned me several times using it already), how about a getting a regular range and putting my pots and pan cupboard where the old oven slot was. It might be a little more carpenter work, but everything would be updated and be more to my liking.

Well, it almost worked like a charm. As the general contractor said, "This is way remodels always go." I'll show what I mean in the pictures that follow.

This is with everything out.

The large circle is where it vents to the outside from the vent hood. The little circle is where it went through the cabinet to connect to the power source to make the vent hood/cooktop controls work.

The little circles at the bottom are the copper lines that were cut through when the cabinet was cut out. The line was the water line to the ice maker/cold water dispenser for the refrigerator. We miss it already. Hopefully it can get fixed soon.

The big circles at the top are where the burners had started burning through the wood under the tile.
This is the hole where the wall oven was. The contractor was too quick for me and got the cross piece (circled area) in before I was able to take a picture of just the hole.
The entire work area.
This is Eric Storm, the general contrator who did such a great job for us. One of the funny things about these shots is the color of his hair. From cutting the tile, the dust got in his hair and it makes him look like it's almost gray. He's really just a young whipper-snapper though. Even with the dust in his hair, he just kept right on working. Good Man!

And, finally, the pile of stuff that is to be hauled away.

So the next post will be the construction, its accompanying problems and the putting of everything back together. Should be much more exciting, I think.

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Happy Birthday Sweetie!!!

Yup! This was the year Mike turned the big double nickel - 55!!!

Unfortunately for him, it was pretty much just another day. But I thought I'd take time out to celebrate what a cute little boy he was. He's still the best catch around and I was the lucky one to reel him in. I thank my lucky stars every day that whatever it was that turned his head my way, I hope He never forgets it or I never lose it. Although at this age, we're both getting a little absent minded, if not, broken down bodied. Good thing we've both forgotten what it was we were supposed to be looking for.
Oh , well. I love him just the same.
Isn't he a cute little feller?
Happy Birthday Sweetheart!!!

Monday, June 1, 2009

Lake Tahoe!!! - Part 2

So, we got up to the top of the mountain - OR what we thought was the top of the mountain.

Not so! There was more to go! And, lots more fun in store.

Remember the Gondola? Well, we got back on and went further UP the mountain to the where the many, Many, MANY ski trails began. It was Heavenly! No, really. That's what the resort is called HEAVENLY! You ski off one side of the mountain and you're in Nevada and you ski off the other side of the mountain and you're in California. And, although I've never skied before, I got a real feel for it there. Mike was tutoring me through it and showing me what we'd be doing if we were there to ski it. "Fascinating!" As Dr. Spock would say. (For those of you who have done it - why?) Because there still was snow up there and we were unprepared and had to schlog through it in regular clothes (which was difficult enough). Could it be funner with all your gear on? CRAZY!!!
This is a picture of some of the snow-cat trails just off the decking on the lower level. We weren't allowed to play in the snow here, but it sure looked inviting. The snow playing came up on the higher level where it was beginning to melt and one could sink in it up to your knees if you weren't careful.

And, going through the snow turn out to be unavoidable, because..... we wanted to go on the ZIP LINE!!! Can you believe it??? Mike and I got the last couple of seats for the day on the longest zip line in the continental U.S. What a kick!!! We had to ride another lift up to a higher part on the mountain with the wind blowing a chill right through to the bone. (Remember, we hadn't planned to do any of these crazy things and we unprepared for all of this - Oh, well. You only live once!) We got into these seats with our knees against the doors, they strapped us in and then opened the doors. I went faster than Mike and hit the end pretty hard. It was a catapult catching system - pretty cool! These pictures are of the two guys that went just before us. See if you can track their progress. Watch the circles....

Getting loaded into the seats.



The view from the top deck with the zip line, the snow and beautiful Lake Tahoe.

Here we are, being human projectiles! We were dropped from the altitude of 9,580 feet and got up to speeds of 55 mph! It was pretty fun and something that you probably only would do once. The landing was a pretty hard jolt and sort of hurt my arms. (I should have been holding on like Mike was, but I had to hold onto my purse (see picture). In comparison, the bungee ride at Lagoon was actually more scary than this was. Maybe we've just been riding motorcycles for too long and getting used to thrilling stuff already. I don't know... Still it was a pretty "heavenly" view and "heavenly" little zip run down the side of the mountain.
And, once again the circled picture shows the trailer and a little teeny bit of the back of the bike in the parking garage as we were coming back down the mountain in the gondola getting ready to head back to Chico. What a fun trip! (Especially for a couple of empty-nesters.) Mike said I couldn't say old, because we aren't yet. That is all....

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Lake Tahoe!!! - Part 1

The little circled area is the bike and trailer in the parking structure (taken as we went by in the gondola).

A view from just getting on the gondola

Goodness! What fun this empty-nesting can be!

We took off after work on Friday on the Goldwing with the trailer behind. You couldn't even feel the trailer at all. It got a little cold going through the mountains and we had to be constantly on the look-out for deer (scarey!), but we got there safely. We stayed in a little rustic lodge on the north side of the lake. What a gorgeous view! Lots of reminders of bears around and lots of reminders of $$$ around, also (boats, tourist spots, expensive homes, etc.). Had a lovely breakfast at a lovely little spot called "Ye Old Post Office."

Then we got on the bike and stopped at a little arts and crafts fair. Went all the way through without being tempted once! We then saw a cute little Christmas store up on a hill and stopped in there. They had a yummy smelling Chocolate Candle there, but it would probably melt in the side bag, so we left it in the store.

Then we drove around to the south end of the lake where the REAL action is - the casinos and the major shops. Oh, brother! You need to bring BAGS of money when you come to Tahoe! Little did we know....

First of all, we parked the bike in a parking structure. You can see it by looking in the circle of the picture. This shot was taken while we were going up the mountain on a gondola. This car went all the way up the mountain and beyond - quite an amazing site. The pictures won't do it justice.
This is a picture of Mike in the Gondola and if you follow the cables all the way up the mountains, that where the gondola took us - way up to the top of the mountain and beyond! It was a fabulous ride for a magnificent view.

We went up, Up, UP!

This is the first level, where the gondola dropped you off to walk around the deck and get all your good photo shots. You got back on the gondola and went FURTHER UP if you wanted to ski and what-not. It's the what-not that always gets 'ya, you know?

This is the Tahoe airstrip from way far away.

This is part of Lake Tahoe.

This is also part of Lake Tahoe - The bottom of the hill that we left from.

All around the decking they have interesting facts about the lake. We used this to compare it to Utah Lake. Lake Tahoe holds much more water than Utah Lake.

Here's Mike up on the decking playing tourist. It was a lovely day, the wind was blowing, but there still was snow up at that elevation.

OK. So, there's more to come, but rather than bore you with this post, I'll cut this off and save it for our next installment. More Fun, MORE FUN in LAKE TAHOE with us!!! I'll bet you can hardly wait. (All right, so maybe you can...)

Life On The Farm - Part 3

It seems we're a happenin' place! this here farm! I no sooner get one blog post up about the farm, and I need to put up another one. So, here goes....

Remember the decomp smell in the garage?

Here comes MIKE to the rescue again! He says, "Aw, shucks. It twern't nuthin'," brushing his foot across the ground in front of hisself. "The little ole mouse jist up and died right there in the middle of the floor by my tools. I found his poor little dicrepit body a stinkin' up the place and thowed it in the trash all by myself, I did."

And the smell has magically gone away. Hurray!!! Guess the fabric (Mickelle) and scrapbook stuff (Emily) will be fine after all. Thank Goodness!

Now, the food in my pantry.... That's another story.

It seems we've become infested with moths in the pantry. How they got in there and why just the pantry, I don't know. EXCEPT, I did find a partially open bag of flavored almonds that had some webs and some ... um..... shall we say..... little wiggly.... creepy crawly worms that had made themselves at home. (Sorry, Laura)

Next project, going through the pantry and throwing out lots of foodstuffs and disinfecting shelves, walls, etc. Good thing the pantry isn't that big. Just what I wanted. Another project! Oh, well. Spring Cleaning is upon us, eh?

Life on the farm...... sigh...........