Sunday, May 31, 2009

Buffalo Gal and Bluebirds

Connections made through blogging with the right attitude can make a difference in your life. When I first began to blog, I told Far Guy, I just needed to write for the grand kids, so that they would know more about me someday if they cared to read my drivel. ( Someday when they are much older and more interested.) I also said that I would keep it real, and the truth as I know it or as I recall it. It had to be that way, for me. I was a blog reader before I became a blogger. Buffalo Gal the woman that inspired me to blog in the first place has become a friend. She might be a tad older than I am, but she is a very talented writer, I enjoy her style, and her stories! She has made me laugh and yes, she has made me cry too. She and her best friend whom she also just happens to be married to, visited with us on Friday afternoon. She knew I was going to be the real me, no makeup, no fancy outfit or shoes, I didn't thoroughly clean the house..but I did straighten up a bit. I did not weed my very wild naturally weedy perennial gardens. I like being me, and she is comfortable with that..thank goodness.

Buffalo Gal had never watched Bluebirds in the wild. Our set of Bluebirds seemed like such a small thing to share, so we invited them over, the Bluebirds busily kept feeding their babies while we feasted on homemade Buffalo Gal Rhubarb Custard Pie! I do appreciate a freshly baked pie, especially the first rhubarb of the season. She did share her pie crust secret with in case I ever decide to bake a pie I will be prepared.

We had a lovely visit. I so enjoy their company, this would never have been possible..except for the fact that we are both "real" what you read is what you get attitude gained me a new friend. Let me tell you now- a- days everyone needs as many friends as they can get. This was the second time we have met, we are looking forward to a get together at their place on the Buffalo Bluff later in the summer. She reports that Chance is just as special in person as he is on my blog. I knew he would like her, he thought she was a wonderful ball thrower!

The blogging community, should you ever decide to join it, is a very interesting way to make new friends. That may seem foreign to some of the readers..but I know the bloggers understand! If you are lucky enough to actually meet a fellow blogger face to face, and still like each other your life will be just a little richer, and if they bake a great pie, that is an added bonus:)

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Chance : On Looking Handsome

Thanks for voting last week, these are the photos that Far Side entered in the photo contest at the local animal shelter. You all did great, and Far Sides conundrum was solved!

You know it is not easy looking handsome...sometimes it is impossible.
The weather has been so windy that I had some serious fly away hair...

Just when I think I might have pulled off my best sidewalk walk, twirl and sit shoot. I am told, "You have eye boogers dude. It is a really good photo except for your boogers." Well ya know, it is not all my fault sometimes when you have don't know it. Who is in charge anyway? Fix it, Fix it..Quick, Quick, Quick don't you have Photoshop??? DO SOMETHING! My sister is well known for the Quick, Quick, Quick saying...she is famous in Far Guys and Far Sides minds for just those three words.
Far Side says "It is not a perfect photo, too many shadows and your ear is funny, one eye is sleepy lookin, I must try harder to make you look perfect dude." It is much better...the eye boogers are all gone. I hope she feels better now. Where do those eye boogers really go anyway?? What are you supposed to do with them? Far Guy usually just wipes them on his pants leg. Far Side uses a Kleenex..if you have eye boogers what do you do with them? :)

Friday, May 29, 2009

Tale of Two Casts

Adam broke his elbow last week, he got to have a blue cast. He was jumping on the trampoline and landed wrong. Luckily he did not require surgery. He was still feeling some pain last weekend when they were here. He was quiet..well quieter than normal. He has to have the cast for four weeks. My arm has been having sympathy pain for him all week...casts are just miserable. They are heavy, they are itchy, they are hot.
Adam, our youngest grandson.
I have had my share of casts, no fun. The last time I had a cast was in 1989 ( knock on wood), I stepped off a step and I broke the fifth metatarsal in my left foot, I went to the Doctor and they x-rayed and casted hurt like heck. It was early spring, I got out my ever faithful crutches and hobbled along, I was not supposed to bear any weight on it. Fine, I am an old hand at this, I can clean cabins on crutches and scrub floors on my butt, I can even drive since it is my left foot. ( Sometime I may tell you about the time I had my right leg in a cast..and tried to drive. LOL) I have had many casts..I am a klutz. The one thing I missed was the ability to get places fast, so I became a pro on the lawn mower, and it worked just fine as long as I remembered to put in some gas, and take my crutches along.

Resort 1989
One afternoon after school I needed to go down to the docks to mow the lawn, I told our then teenage daughters where I was going. Of course the four Shelties followed me, they followed me everywhere. Wouldn't you know it, I forgot my crutches, at the house, on the sidewalk.. I mowed for awhile .. I ran out of gas. I just sat there on the mower, no boats are on the lake, no neighbors are out in their paddle boats or on their docks, it is quiet. I holler for the girls, which just makes the Shelties bark. HELP! TRICA! JENNIFER! ANYBODY! No one is hearing me. I hop to the dock on my one good foot, laid down to rest, and mull over my options, the dogs and I could paddle around the lake in a boat, I could just wait for Far Guy to come home from work, I could wait for a neighbor to come along, I could wait for my children to miss me.. I had a nap. Sometimes I do that when I get all stressed out, some people pace and fret.. ( I couldn't have paced anyway, I suppose I could have hopped while fretting. ) I had a nice nap, when I woke up I tried encouraging the dogs to get help, they were worthless, they just licked my face and whined. I hollered again for help and the dogs barked. I thought briefly about hopping on one foot up that steep hill, and then down the other side to the house... but I am a klutz. I thought about crawling home on my hands and knees.. I decided to just wait for a bit. . the girls should be getting hungry, they know their Father will be home soon, they should be noticing that I am not cooking anything. Supper is at 6 :15 to 6 :20 every night, there are no excuses to be absent, it is the only time of the day we are all together as a family. Well Far Guy finally came home, the dogs take off barking, he notices my crutches on the sidewalk, he asked the girls where I went.."OH to the docks a long time ago, funny shes not back by now, she should be cooking supper." Far Guy rescued me, he brought me my crutches and then some gas. A few weeks later I decided I had enough of that miserable cast, so I climbed into the bathtub filled with warm water and proceeded to cut the thing off with a scissors.. Far Guy had to come to my rescue that time too..except with a pair of side cutters and a tin snips. The Doctor probably never would have noticed either, except I got a really bad case of poison ivy from my dogs, and had to go into his office.. He said "Where's your cast?" UMMM.. in the garbage. My fifth metatarsal healed just perfectly too..the x-rays confirmed it:)

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Noah is Ten!

Ten years ago early one morning our first grandson was born, Far Guy and I missed his birth, but as we walked into the maternity ward, a small baby was screaming while he was getting his very first bath by his Father..yup that was our grandson! He was perfect! I had very little baby boy experience since 1960 when my baby brother was born, I do have nephews but they all lived far away when they were little. Noah has taught me many things... about diaper changing, the BOY way, playing cars and trucks, and making funny vehicle noises. That little boys will crawl up any ladder, they will spend hours trying to drive the lawn tractor, that you can't leave keys in anything..because they are so mechanically inclined..they know the sequence of starting the three wheeler. Little boys are an adventure waiting to happen!
Far Guy and Noah in July of 1999

My how he has grown, he is going to be one tall dude! This is our daughter, Jen and Noah. Do you suppose he will surpass his Mother in height by the end of the summer? At 5'8" (I think..what kind of Mom doesn't know exactly how tall her child is?) Jen is no short person. She is a couple of inches taller than me and I used to be 5'6"... I asked Far Guy.. He said " IS she taller than you?" Anyway, I predict that this child will be eating them out of house and home soon, as he continues to grow like a weed! He finally added one more vegetable to his list..he will now eat green beans, along with his other favorite vegetables corn and raw carrots. This is a milestone..for a very fussy eater. I asked how he is doing with peas..still can't get them down..just like his father. Noah is trying more new foods all the time, he no longer just refuses to try. He is growing up!

You never get too old, or too tall for a kiss from your Mom! Happy Birthday Noah! :)

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Wistful Wednesday : 1959

This is a photo taken in 1959, my brother, Arvilla (our wonderful neighbor lady, whose farmhouse I wrote about yesterday), Carla (her daughter) and me. My Mother took this photograph, It was taken in our living room on the farm. It must have been winter time, as I am wearing flannel lined jeans and slippers. I remember that western style shirt that my brother was wearing, my Mom had sewed it for him. The dolls must have been just visiting with Carla.

In 1957, there was a brand new grade school built in our nearby town, I was so disappointed, you see we lived just down the road from the old country school, I would be able to walk all by myself! Then they went and built the new school and I had to take the bus. But they we very smart people and hired Arvilla as the hot lunch cook. She greeted all the school children by name in the lunch line. Needless to say hot lunch was out of this world, everything was tasty, and you could never disappoint her so you always gave new foods and recipes a try.

When I was in first grade, I had to have my tonsils out. I couldn't eat normal food, so Arvilla would heat me up some soup in the kitchen and I got to have my lunch on one of her stools in the kitchen. She also saved jello and soft foods for me to eat. I may have had a very sore throat for quite a few more days than necessary ..just because I loved being in the kitchen with her! :)

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Loons eggs are hatching!

Today in Minnesota, one loon egg has hatched and we are waiting on the other egg to hatch..the new baby loon is a fuzzy ball on the nest with his or her parents. Here is the Link! :)

The Neighbors Farmhouse

It was a landmark, the big white farmhouse with the big red barn and a windmill. The lonely house stood empty. Memories are all that remain. The children all grown with grandchildren of their own. The old timers both now gone one to heaven and one to the nursing home.

They moved from Nebraska back in 1954, to the big old house, full of hope and possibility. We welcomed them as neighbors. They were friends of my parents, when my Mother went to work at the Osage Boat Factory their house became the daycare home for my brother and I .. and the lovely lady became our "Second Mom." Through the years, they have welcomed us back to the neighborhood twice, we lived across the road from them when we lived at the resort, presently we live just down the road. You couldn't have asked for better neighbors.
Cookies warm from the oven, kids to play with, warm loving hugs.
A piano on the porch, playing hopscotch in the yard, a windmill turning.
A claw foot bathtub, fun in the girls room, memories made.
Laughter, old stories, blueberry pies, cookies made with lard and egg coffee.
Red Christmas doilies, Christmas bread braided, warm cinnamon rolls and a pickle in the Christmas tree.
Church quilts, a precious white puppy and plants in the kitchen window.
Tango red geraniums, pretty plates, Cardinals, and orange begonias.
Buttercup squash and cucumbers, jars of pickles shared, recipes freely given.
Coffee is always on, the door is always open, the sweet voice always hollers "Come on in" Welcoming hugs. Then silence..

The house, had stood for 109 years. It had served its occupants well, it was time to move on.
On Saturday it was used as a control burn for the local Fire Department to train firefighters. For many young firefighters this was their first time being inside a burning house.

Early Monday morning, the elderly gentleman was called home. It is the end of a generation. The windmill keeps turning, the next generation is in place. Wonderful neighbors they are, part of the family that moved from Nebraska so long ago. You couldn't ask for better neighbors:)

Photos from Saturday May 23, 2009

Monday, May 25, 2009

Decoration Day

Old people called it "Decoration Day." The day in May set aside to strew flowers on soldiers graves. The day to pause and think about the white crosses spread all over Europe. To honor all servicemen and women who "gave their all."

Now we are encouraged to stop for one full minute of remembrance at 3 PM. Somehow sometime someplace something got all messed up...perhaps if we spent just one full minute communicating with a child about the importance of this tradition of decorating soldiers graves we would make more of a dent. Perhaps if they visited a graveyard and just appreciated the tiny flags flying in the breeze...:)

Sunday, May 24, 2009

A Wild Ride

Our youngest daughter is married to a "big kid". She often says she has three boys, one is just way bigger than the other two. This must be Andy's year for wheels, he got a unicycle for Christmas, and a Harley Davidson in April, a new Tahoe in May and a bicycle built for two..yesterday. Wheels...they make this "big kid" smile.
Noah was game for a spin with his Dad. I went out to take photographs..Jen was not going to go for a ride..Adam and Far Guy both said "Not today" ..bummer..the excitement of new wheels ..should be shared. Far Guy suggest that I go..what the heck..I was picturing a leisurely ride, and started singing my off key rendition of Daisy, Daisy, give me your answer please..Andrew took over in perfect pitch as he pedaled faster and faster... I'm half crazy...

Gone was the perfect photograph in my head, long billowing skirts, the beautiful flower adorned hat with the flowing ribbons, the breeze playing gently on my face. I was hanging on for dear life..we accelerated to speeds that would have been record setting if we had been in the Tour De France. Trees were flashing by so fast that they became a blur..briefly I thought about the Obit...Area resident, killed when she met a tree..then even worse.. Just an accident report..Victim was just skinned up over ninety percent of her body, but lives..unfortunately. I should have insisted on a helmet, and RULES before I ventured anywhere with my Son In Law on his Bicycle built for two. He did deliver me back home safe and sound..well safe anyway..Far Guy said "Wow what a ride..why didn't you use the brakes?" What brakes..there were none on my handlebars? Think old bike..the brakes are applied by pedaling backwards..I was a kid so long ago I had forgotten:)

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Inside the Bluebird Box

You know you are getting old, when you watch birds every morning, afternoon and evening.

Far Guy and I have two pairs of Bluebirds, one set near the house and another set along the driveway. We watch for them everyday. I know where to look, I know where the male loves to roost to defend his area. He is not bothered by our activity in the yard, or Chance playing ball. In fact he seems to watch the crazy dog sometimes. Bluebirds are gentle little souls, they aren't flighty like the Goldfinches, they aren't pushy like the Blue Jays. They seem very task orientated, and non social, everything they do is for the nest and the babies. Seems to me that there are some human parents that could take a lesson from the Bluebirds.

Far Guy was concerned one day, he said "I think there is a problem with the nest." He thought there were babies, and now they were it would be time to clean out the nest. They have been here since early April, so this was a possibility. I took my camera and we investigated. Far Guy wore gloves, even though they have a really poor sense of smell, and will not abandon a nest box if you open it.
We opened the nesting box, there were eggs! Once we saw the eggs we made our investigation so quick that we didn't count the eggs..but we think there were three. I think they hatched on Thursday, that evening was the first time I saw the male with worms dangling from his beak on his roost in the Oaks.

Did you know that only the female Bluebird has a brood patch? It is a bare patch of abdominal skin..which makes her the nest sitter. It also makes her mate the nest watcher, and watch he does.. I have only seen them on their branch together a few times...I would like to get a photo of them together. Of course I would also like to get a photo of the baby Bluebirds fledging from the nest too...once they have fledged and the nest is empty, the box should be cleaned out, they may use it again to build another nest and raise another batch. It seems heartless to remove the empty nest, but all the "experts" say that you should. So I guess we will..unless she lays more eggs again before we get it cleaned out.

Female Bluebird, resting on top of the nesting box.
I am not sure how many of you are following the Live Loon Cam here in Minnesota, but this is the week! Larry thinks that the eggs will hatch sometime between Tuesday and Thursday. It is really something to see! The link is to the left on my page:)

Friday, May 22, 2009

Watching Chance

Yesterday we ventured to the "big city." We took Chance, the weather wasn't as warm as the day before when we hit 90 degrees and summer arrived..what happened to spring anyway? We tag team the dog when the weather is warm, no sitting in the car unaccompanied. If he is along, who ever is on duty, gets warm in the car too or takes him for a walk. It is good for a country dog, to hear traffic noises and the sounds of the city. We can also work on his leash skills. Far Guy took his turn while I was in the Clinic, I seem unable to leave my Doctor of 14 years behind, and since I am not a sickly person, it works. I had my annual check up, my blood pressure was perfect ( 122/78 for those who care. ) I should live to be a really old I should increase my Vitamin D and Calcium.

I took my turn with Chance while Far Guy visited a friend in the hospital. We walked around the perimeter of the medical facility. I watched Chance watching people. The first fellow we encountered was a security guard, complete with weapon.. he smiled at Chance and Chance wagged his tail. Way to go friendly to people with guns. Some women passed by and Chance just looked at them. A woman with a stroller caused some serious tail wagging. Then we went and stood near the entrance where traffic was whizzing by, where we watched one of the gardeners weeding. Then Chance really perked up, his tail was wagging ninety miles an hour, obviously he could hear something that I could not, a gentleman emerged from the lower level parking ramp, he was walking with the aid of a cane, he paid no attention to Chance or me and kept shuffling along. Chance was visibly disappointed that the gentleman didn't stop to visit. Soon after that Far Guy emerged, one low whistle brought the dog into another tail wagging frenzy! I found it very revealing to watch the dog watch people. He likes smiling men better than women, women with small children and old men with canes. I wonder how much of this is just his nature, versus nurture. He spent the first eight weeks of his life on a farm with oodles of small children. He spent a number of years visiting the Nursing Home regularly. We have several people we know who use their canes as baseball bats to hit him some ground balls. We have children in the neighborhood that love to visit Chance...some have arrived in strollers, over the years.

Chance has only tried to kidnap one of the nearly five year olds in the neighborhood so far this spring. I was visiting, and Chance went home by himself..but Jordan followed him. Luckily the small child knocked on the window, much to Far Guys surprise.. he knew immediately that the dog was up to his kidnapping shenanigans again. The trio came walking down the road, just as we were leaving to find them. The child was scolded, it was too late to scold the dog...he had his innocent "I just went home, I can't help being irresistible look." Nice try Chance :)
A very happy, but dirty Chance with just one of the neighborhood children.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Chance : Needs your help

Hey, I need your help, Far Side is in a conundrum, you know a fix, she can't make a decision. I told her that her readers and my fans might be able to help out. I am a not only very handsome but I am pretty smart too! Far Side says "Chance, a little humility would go a long way."

Photo #1 Taken on April 22, 2009 We thought spring was here.
Photo#2 Taken on April 24, 2009 What happened to spring?

As you may have noticed, she takes many photographs of me, she says hundreds because I am easily bored with her camera, and have learned that simply closing my eyes will cause her to stop! There is another contest at the local animal shelter, she will enter again. Last May we entered two photographs, and we want to enter two again this year. Throughout the summer they have a travelling display, for 25 cents people can vote for their favorite, the top thirteen vote getters are featured on a calendar. Anyway she has way too many photos to choose from, so she sat at her computer half the night and came up with five photos which she thinks are really good. Now she can't decide... women. Last year, my photos raised about thirty dollars for the Shelter. Not a fantastic amount..but hey..Far Side says "Every little bit helps."

Photo #3 Taken last June, right after I had been to the groomer!

Photo #4 Taken December 20, 2008 Far Side says this is a anniversary photo, no not my anniversary..theirs! But I did celebrate four years with them a few days later!
Photo #5 Taken on October 07, 2008 I was on the lookout for Turkeys and Deer!

So here is where you come in, please leave a comment with the two photos that you think are the best..Thanks! I knew I could count on you! :)

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Wistful Wednesday : 1927

This is a Osage Minn School 1927, Entire School photo, just like it says on the small chalkboard. Far Guys Dad ( age 13) is in the back row, far left, he is the shortest boy with the wavy hair. I suspect that his younger brother ( age 9) is in the front row, the little kid with the curly hair, sitting on the ground in the front row, far left, with what I perceive to be a black and red plaid coat. His other brother would have been just six, and I am not sure if he attended school that year ..I cannot for the life of me pick him out in this photo.

This is the first photo that I have restored that has a mark on it, in the lower left hand corner right under the wheel chair it reads Old Masters Studio, Fargo , N D I found that interesting. Someone from Fargo apparently was making the rounds taking must have been pretty exciting for these kids!

Here is a glimpse into 1927. Calvin Coolidge was President. Powdered Kool Aid was invented by a man from Nebraska. Charles Lindbergh flew the first Trans Atlantic flight from New York City to Paris. In Britain 1,000 people a week die from an influenza outbreak. A new car was $495.00 this was the last year that Ford made the Model T. A loaf of bread was 9 cents a loaf, I imagine only big city people bought bread. A gallon of gas was 12 cents a gallon. A gallon of milk was 56 cents a gallon. No wonder everyone that could have one, had a cow!! The average annual income was $2,400.00

The handicapped child was obviously main streamed into the school, there were only two teachers. I wonder if he lived near the school...or if he was loaded into an old horse drawn wagon to get to school:)
If you click on the photo, it will enlarge for you!

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

The Auction Purchase

On Saturday at the sale, I had my list. It read like this..carving supplies, carving wood blanks, Foxfire books, old cook books, marbles, cedar chest, glassware, humpback trunk, Juicer, electric mixer, and spinning wheel. I wanted the spinning wheel so badly, it belonged to my Uncles Grandmother and it came on a boat with her from Norway in the 1880's. There was no way I could possibly hope to come home with it. I crossed it off my list. Certainly someone from my Uncles side of the family would want it.

Many years ago, my Mother shared a small inheritance with us. Three hundred dollars, we were to buy something we really wanted to remember our grandparents by. I tucked the money away, and have had one eye out for a spinning wheel. The antique ones were always too expensive. A new one was an affordable option, but I had never wanted to go just didn't seem right.

When the bidding on the spinning wheel started, I was in at 100, Far Guy was standing right behind me, whispering in my ear, 'You deserve it" 150 "you have the money saved" 200 "Don't let it go" 250 then the bids stalled..I thought I might get it at 250, no such luck, "Bid again" 270 "Don't quit" 290 " keep going till 350" 310...SOLD.. I got it..and then the tears started. I had to chew on the inside of my cheeks for about an hour, so I wouldn't be a blubbering idiot. Now everyone wants to know if I am going to learn how to spin.. maybe I will..maybe I will just look at it..someone from Far Guys side of the family wants me to spin him some yarn for some socks! I haven't a clue what all the pieces do, or where they go..or if it will ever spin anything. I do have a cousin that spins and has her own wheel, she has kindly offered to teach me..someday. I have some fiber, it is all saved up from our four Shelties, from years ago. I know how to knit and crochet so at least I won't have to learn how to do that too.I need to thank my sister in law ( the eagle eye, who always sees Robin's before me) for being observant. My brother didn't like the way the bidding was going on the spinning wheel, he was about ready to start bidding..when his lovely wife said "I think your sister is bidding on it."

Now are you wondering why it was so emotional for me? Me, who rarely bawls about anything unless it involves a dog, a cat or a horse. It was such a mixture of happiness, unbelief and sadness all rolled into one. It was a circle completed. Something I apparently waited just the right amount of time for. Of all the beautiful pieces of furniture and all of the keepsakes there that day, I know that this spinning wheel was one of my Uncles favorite treasures. He would be happy. I was sad because I still miss him so much, even though he has been deceased a number of years.

My daughters may not be thrilled, another piece of odd ball furniture for them to deal with someday. I have contacted my uncles only brother for more details about the spinning wheel, hopefully he can help to recall more of the story that should accompany this spinning wheel. Maybe someday at another auction sale, someone will purchase it, maybe my brother. Whoever ends up with it, I hope they appreciate it as much as I do:)

Monday, May 18, 2009

Minnesota Spring

Slowly spring is arriving. Last Saturday morning, it snowed..SNOW on the 16Th of melted as it hit the ground. It collected on the grill and the lawn swing. Last week a half a mile from here it hailed until the ground was white, Far Guy and I saw the dark cloud.. we got wind and a few sprinkles but no hail here. Every day the wind howls, like a mad banshee, I have never encountered such a windy spring. So far we have only had two or three really nice days. It has been freezing quite regularly at night. My Lupines are up and were nipped quite severely the other night. They showed me the under sides of their leaves in protest. I am hoping they don't croak. I have to search very hard for small signs that warmer weather is coming. The Burr Oaks are always so slow. I love them, but why couldn't they be faster.
The little violets are a spring surprise that I enjoy.

The grain crops are up, the green is a welcome sight!
Spring in Minnesota can be both frustrating and rewarding..hurry up..hurry up Spring..lots of people are waiting for you! :)

Sunday, May 17, 2009

A Missing Piece

Years ago, Far Guys Dad established a tradition. In the winter, Far Guys Dad would get out the puzzles. The old card table was resurrected out of the front closet to take it's place in the living room. It became an adventure, ever changing with new conquests, as the years went by the dog ate a few puzzle pieces, the grand girls escaped with a few. Far Guys Dad always said "All the pieces aren't there anyway." or "I have been searching for that one piece all week." Winter weekends, were always the same, there were always missing pieces..usually found. Puzzles were just part of the card table history, it was the card table that was set up for a night of card playing, it was the little kids table at Christmas, Thanksgiving and Easter. It had history!

In 1994, when Far Guys parents sold their home and moved into a Senior Citizen apartments complex to escape the snow removal and yard mowing problems that were becoming more difficult for them, they had an Auction Sale. I had a list, of all the treasures that we wanted to purchase. Some of the items we were able to reclaim, the old red couch, the one that Far Guy's Dad had picked out because it was extra long and he could stretch out and nap there..and it was red, his favorite color. Far Guy's Mom had a set of China, it was purchased and given to our youngest daughter. Many treasures were sold that day, we couldn't possibly purchase them all. Some went to neighbors, some to old friends, some to relatives. Some things went to strangers. That happens at auctions. One thing that we did not get that day in 1994, was the old card table. My Uncle purchased it, he had a great appreciation for wood inlaid items, it had a good home.

Then the unimaginable happened, my Uncle died, on his birthday of all days. I don't often quarrel with God, and there have been only two people in my entire life that I would have gone "toe to toe" with God for. My Uncle was one of those men. I learned more from him about laughter and life than I have from people I am actually blood related to. He was married to my Dad's sister. She has now moved into a retirement apartment. Yesterday was the Auction Sale. I had another one of my lists. Far Guy had a list. I made one special purchase that brought tears to my eyes..more about that some other day.

It was a really hard day, to see all the earthly treasures of someone who collected many things throughout their life on hay wagons and trailers..sold to the highest bidder. Each item with a story. This auction should have been a two day sale, but it was all crammed into one day. There were ten wagons of "stuff." We arrived at 9:30 AM, we came home twice, once to get Chance and one time so that I could bring Far Guy and Chance back home. Far Guy was exhausted, the wind blew relentlessly most of the day. It was cold, it was miserable, especially after sunset. I went back to wait for one last item, it was dark when I made my final purchase ...a missing piece:)

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Frustrating Forsythia Failure

I love Forsythia, I am very partial to yellow flowers, yellow is such a sunny warm color. I have a Forsythia in my yard. It is Forsythia x 'Meadowlark' it was a NDSU introduction back in 1986 ( by one of my Professors), I have thought about writing him a letter to give him my opinion on his introduction. He is getting on in years and has probably lost what little sense of humor he had. It is the only Forsythia that is hardy in our area. For nine years it has been a dismal failure. I keep hoping for just a couple of or two..hey I don't ask for a flowing fountain of flowers but a couple would be nice. Here it is: A Failure.. my frustrating may get leaves in a couple of weeks, if not, I can declare it deader than a doornail and swear off further Forsythia attempts.
Here is one blooming just this past week in town, a virtual fountain of color. I was tempted to knock on the door and ask for a whip, ( a cutting) but I took this photo from the roadside and went on my way. I am sure they take their Forsythia for granted...they probably don't even give it a thought.

I did find this Meadowlark a while ago... but he just reminded me of my failures:(

Friday, May 15, 2009

A New Friend

We have a new friend, she lives down the road at Hooch's house. She is eight weeks old. Her name is Odda 2, she is a Bernese Mountain Dog. Odda 1 died when she was just sixteen weeks old, she had a defective heart. ( It was very sad) This new pup was supposed to be called Bella..but everyone kept calling her Odda instead of Odda 2 is her name! We have visited twice in a week, she has no manners..yet, and her little teeth are like razor blades. Hooch is teaching her some manners, he is a tough teacher, and made her cry yesterday. It sounded terrible, and Hooch was in big trouble... Hooch may be in for a big surprise when she gets bigger...and bigger she will be! Chance did really good with the new pup, of course she thought seeing someone the color of her Mother was pretty interesting. He just moved out of her way, when she got too "nosy."
All tails are up! Hooch, Chance and Odda 2
Chance and Odda 2

Run Odda 2 Run

She is pretty cute!

I think it is wonderful that I can live vicariously through my neighbors new puppy, I can visit, and play, and go home. Kinda like being a Grandma! No whining at night, no accidents during potty training, no new puppy smells ( Gosh I love the smell of a new puppy.) Sometimes I would like to have my very own dog. Chance loves me, but he is devoted to Far Guy. They are best buddies, and sometimes it is down right nauseating the interaction between my husband and his best friend. The other evening I was busy with something, and they were having a "talk" went like this. "Well, buddy, I guess it is time to cook something for supper, you are getting hungry aren't you dude?" grr..grr.. "Nope, she doesn't cook anymore." grr.. grr.. "I guess thirty- five years of cooking almost every night burned her out, so now it is our turn" grr.. grr.. pathetic arn't they? :)

Thursday, May 14, 2009

193 Miles For Supper

North Piney Creek, Wyoming August 1996
Far Guy challenged me to tell this story. He wants you all to know what a romantic guy he can be!

We had been camping in the wilds of Wyoming for about a week, when we came out of the wilderness, all I could think about was standing for hours in my brother's very warm shower ( He lived in Big Piney, WY) Cold streams and partially warmed water in a primitive shower bag only go so far. Far Guy said, how would you like to go out for a really good supper on the way back home? Fine.. I am game.
He headed south and then where near the way home. We stopped in Kemmerer, Wyoming at the JCPenney Mother Store, it was a very interesting diversion, I bought a few more clean T shirts. I am somewhat of a impatient, bored traveller and like to stop often. Far Guy not so much, he has the destination in focus at all times. Well one thing led to another, I know how to distract him, a few little kisses strategically placed near his ear, found us at at some scenic overlook for a little kissy face. Finally after 193 miles we are in Ogden, Utah. Far Guy once went to a restaurant in Ogden, but he can't remember the name of it, or exactly where it was located. He has been so many places, to so many Air Force Bases..could he be confused? By this time..I am thinking MOTEL! Forget the food, a real bed and then another glorious shower ..then you could feed me some chips and a soda. I am an easy woman. Far Guy has a need, a need to take me to this place where he ate supper one time...always an eye on the destination. The desk clerk at the motel, says OH yes, that place, you are close, it is only a few blocks from here.

We found it, Far Guy is like a little kid, so excited to share! We walk in, it is really, really dark. Then I notice a boardwalk, and a campfire, and stars twinkling in the ceiling, I hear some rendition of an old cowboy song, the boardwalk leads to covered wagons, private little covered wagons, lit inside with lanterns. We order Steaks, and Salads..they bring us an entire loaf of freshly baked bread, and butter..real butter. They also have real Coke, not Pepsi, so far this place is getting rave reviews from me. The steaks were perfect, tin plates and all, it was romantic, we played a little footsie under the table..we laughed and talked, enjoyed the campfire ( lit by some flame type light) the wolves and coyotes howled in the distance, Far Guy serenaded me as he sang along with some of the cowboy music. It was a perfect choice for a really good supper. During our meal, I shared about how I always wanted to wade in The Great Salt Lake, I had viewed this lake before when I was a teenager, but my parents wouldn't stop for some wading.

You want to wade in the water.. OK.. Far Guy has a new destination in mind now, so after supper we drove out to Antelope Island, it was a long drive, the closer we got, the more we noticed a strange odor in the air. About the time we both said, "How do people put up with this horrid odor?" It got worse, gag a maggot worse, then worse than that..finally we are there, we are both holding our noses..Far Guy says we should have done this before supper..not after..I did get to stick my toes in the water, amongst the swarms of little flies..while holding my nose. Later I soaked my feet in the tub for a really long time.

After more than twenty years, I wondered if this place of covered wagons still exists, indeed it does, it is called The Prairie Schooner. I highly recommend it, it is one of our fondest memories, not only the meal, but as a reminder that Far Guy is a bit romantic and he will go out of his way to make some of my oddball wishes come true:)