Thursday, January 18, 2018

Chance : All about me

We got a Trail Cam just before Christmas, we can tell who comes and goes and how long they stay.  It has been pointed many different directions.

Mostly it catches me coming and going.  Helping to get the mail or feeding the birds or leading Far Guy around in the yard.

Gene and Chance

It also captures birds flying by, snow falling out of the trees and some weird glowing eyes at night and the Bunnies which I am not supposed to chase.

Far Side said she is amazed at the quality of the photos.

Yesterday was a get up at o dark thirty day, the old folks had to attend a class on Defensive Driving to save some $ on their automobile insurance.  They are pretty sneaky.  I got to go along but only as far as the groomers.  I got groomed and expressed and all those things that go along with a morning at the groomers.  I was very handsome but exhausted.   Everyone had a long afternoon nap after we got back home.

I still have some patchy dry skin problems.  I still have that nasty hemorrhoid/fistula/tumor too…Far Side likes the days that it totally disappears…but then it comes back again.  Now that I have been to the groomers my butt hair is much shorter, it will be easier to keep clean…or so someone says.  Far Side is real particular about my butt.  She says caring for an older dog is challenging and sometimes a crappy job.

I can go up the steps most days by myself, sometimes I need help and they put the harness with the handle on me.  I never come down the stairs by myself anymore.  I lay on the landing and when I want to come down I whine or bark…yes barking gets their attention, they bring up the harness and guide me down the stairs safely.  I play ball but not for very long.  I need help getting in and out of the car but I still like to go for a ride EVERY day!

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Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Wistful Wednesday: Neighbors

Last week was a hard week for long time neighbors.  People that I have known nearly all my life…well since my parents moved to their farm in Carsonville township  in 1952.

Ruby.  What  a gal, she celebrated her Christmas Eve birthday of 100 years and lived 16 days longer than that.   She and her husband Bob owned the Texaco Station in Ponsford.  Bob and I shared a dog one summer.  A German Shepherd showed up at the farm, she would stay a few days and then be gone, a few days later she would show up again.  I named her Princess.  I snuck her food, but we had other dogs on the farm and didn’t need another.   One day we stopped at the Texaco station and there she was…the mystery was solved…Bob couldn’t figure out where she (Patsy) went or why?  We lived just over 4 miles away.  Ruby always loved that old memory of the shared dog.  Bob has been gone a long time (he died in 1999) and now sweet Ruby has joined him.  Their lake place on the west side of Shell Lake was a great place to swim in the summer and we were always welcomed. Hot summer nights before air conditioning spent on their dock is a fond memory for me as a kid. Last summer Ruby invited me to her birthday party and so when it rolled around I went…she was so happy to see the good turn out for her birthday. She made it to 100!  She said she would and she did.

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The old Texaco sign still marks the spot of the old station in Ponsford.

Jim.  Jim died the day after Ruby.  Since they were good friends that used to play cards together all the time it is fitting that he died the day after Ruby.  They lived just a mile apart all their lives.  Jim was 94.  We used to have coffee with Jim and his wife Irene and talk about area history. Jim’s Grandpa Nunns family and Far Guy’s Great Grandfather Abbott family were neighbors up in Eramosa Township, Wellington County  Ontario Canada. They all made the trip together to Eunice Township Becker County first in 1889 and shortly therafter settled in Carsonville Township.  Jim used to say that his Grandpa was sickly and would have died in Canada, but the healing air of the pine boughs saved him here in Minnesota. ( Then he would wipe away a tear or two.)  Jim used to say that there were many Indian mounded graves in the area…one was right along the road.  He had lots of stories to tell.  One story I will share; Jim had a pretty good looking Stallion.  Our daughter Trica worked out a deal with him to have her horse “visit” the stallion for awhile….when asked what we owed for feed…he replied “The good Lord provided the rain and sunshine for a good pasture and there is no way I am charging you for that!”

Jim and his wife Irene were married for 72 years before she died in 2016. Up until that time they were constant companions.  Their children took turns caring for them on the farm until 2015 when Irene needed extra help so they moved into assisted living and away from their farm.

In years past we would enjoy seeing a team hitched up to a sleigh or a wagon taking kids and grandkids for a ride the old fashioned way.  “There goes Jim.”

St Theodores Ponsford

Saying goodbye to really old friends is hard.  Not many old timers around anymore.  Soon we will be the old timers….maybe we are already.

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Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Deep Freeze

It warmed up briefly over the weekend and then it snowed, turned cold and we were thrust back into the deep freeze.  Cold temperatures along with a wind had the wind chills hovering from –30 to –50 below zero.

I took advantage of the warmer weather and took some photos outside…I had been inside the house way too long.  Cabin Fever will get to you sooner or later and a walk in the yard was the best medicine for that!

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The glass flowers are holding up quite nicely.

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The old Border Collie didn’t want to pose for a photo.

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He was ignoring me.  I told him that the snow shows up so nicely on his black coat…but he still ignored me.  I should have had a treat in my pocket!

We got two+ inches of snow before going into the deep freeze again.  We should emerge from the deep freeze on Wednesday and it looks to be a warmer weekend!!  Something to look forward to!

We ran errands yesterday in the brutal cold, no fun at the gas station…or anyplace else.  We are stocked up again for another week.  Chance enjoyed his ride to town…he got REAL bossy as we were getting ready to leave and started whining and then barked at us…he was ready to go!

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Monday, January 15, 2018

Christmas Cards, Letters and Photos

Chance and Far Guy love their trips to the mail box during December. 

Since we send 120 Christmas Cards.  We get many in return.

I did find one of my Christmas Cards…tucked away in a box of cards that I sometimes take to carving when my hand is not up to working with a knife.

Christmas card 2017

2017 Christmas Card inside it said “Christmas comes anew each year to draw people in from the cold.”

The sled/birds design was a stamp, stamped on water color paper and embellished with markers and glitter then it was framed with a border of red (other colors were used too) and then mounted on the white snowflake embossed paper ( which I also embellished with some kind of glitter!)

Christmas cards

Yesterday I read through all the Christmas Cards and letters again.  Then they were either tucked away in a folder or recycled.

Christmas photo cards 

Photo Christmas Cards were looked at again and placed in a folder for a someday look back down memory lane.

Some letters were kept.  The letters are bittersweet; they told of struggles with cancer, deaths, births, lonliness after being widowed, and the usual what Far Guy calls “Brag” letters…we vacationed here and there and everywhere. Two letters in particular touched us this year…Jamie with her sense of humor and Bob and Sheila…  well I guess really only Bob writing about an old print of Rural 1950’s Farm life and never giving up on our dreams. Bob is a retired Pastor and he and Sheila are the other set of Grandparents to Noah and Adam.

Card from Sharon

Some cards had notes inside and some were on the front…like this one…from Sharon, her husband Gary was Far Guy’s best friend who died way too soon back in 1993.

The card count this year:

46 Christmas Cards

24 Christmas Photo Cards

22 Christmas Letters

Lots of good reading!

Ongoing Project:  Last year I organized all the Christmas letters and photos and put them in page protectors in three ring binders.  This year is was real easy to get out the binders and slip letters and photos where they belong.

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Sunday, January 14, 2018

Latest Woodcarving

Far Guy has been working on a woodcarving since last summer.  When he told me what he wanted to carve…I thought oh my is it possible?  He put it aside to help with the 100 fish for the Christmas ornaments.

Each petal is carved individually and then anchored into the stem. (Itty bitty holes are drilled, the petal end is sharpened and fit into the tiny holes and glued in place.) 

Asters before

The base is a piece of mesquite that came from our friend Norm’s stash.  No doubt he picked it up in Arizona. 

Saturday Far Guy asked…”What is your plan for the day?” I replied dishes, laundry and then I will find a photo of your Aster to see about the color you want it….he smiled. As I was blending the colors to get it just perfect..he hovered like an expectant father.

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He has little holes on his carving station that holds many of his small projects.  He helped me paint the stems and leaves and after I finished the flower parts he sealed the whole work of art.

Asters after

It is just perfect.   A one of a kind…I am not sure he will ever design and carve another one like it.

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