Friday, February 28, 2014

Goodbye Cold February

So long, farewell  goodbye…GOODBYE!

You were a cold miserable month.

Chick a dee 

Your brilliant blue skies yesterday looked warmer than –2 F.  The wind made it much colder.

Snow bank

The snow banks grow taller and taller.  North Dakota must be sharing their snow with us.

Snowstick holds at 16 inches

Here in the yard at the snow stick the measurement of 16 inches is holding.  Notice all the bits of bark that landed on the snow during the big wind.

Two people froze to death Wednesday night or early Thursday morning, a six year old girl in Bemidji and a 36 year old woman in Motley.   It was a bad week for area news, there was a murder in Park Rapids at the old High School which is now apartments. South of us there was a murder/suicide near Alexandria.   Is the cold weather becoming too much for some people…perhaps.

I am a sleepwalker, so I can understand how a six year old could make it outside and never make it back inside the house again. The wind chill was –40 F to –50 F that night with temperatures in the –30’s. I used to worry about our girls when they were little, once kids can reach the door knob they can leave the house on their own.  I used to stick a butter knife sideways flat against the door and angle it into the door trim.   It made for a good lock…they couldn’t reach it.  I recall my parents doing the same thing to keep me inside the old farmhouse when I was little.  A simple thing as an everyday butter knife can save a child’s life.

I have my fingers and toes crossed that March will bring warmer temperatures …but I am not holding my breath.

Blog Signature

Thursday, February 27, 2014

Cold so what else is new?

As I write this the winds are howling and snow is blowing around.  The wind chills are reported to be –40 below zero.  Just a tad chilly.

One day I needed to vent. Several little things were bothering me. Sometimes little things stack up and bug the crap out of me.

Pyrex is a pretty good name and usually they have a lifetime warranty.

Heat resistant spatula

My Pyrex spatula should not have broken whilst I was stirring a batch of cookies.  Far Guy said “Throw it out and buy a new one.”  I sent a photo and wrote to World Kitchens LLC who put me in touch with Robinson Home Products who bought Pyrex Accessories, I complained and low and behold a week or so later my new spatula showed up in the mail.  The new one is identical although it is not marked Pyrex it still has  a lifetime warranty.  It is stated such on the tag.

Heat resistant spatula

I will keep this tag just incase it happens again. $5.00 is $5.00

Next I confronted the Vectra 3D problem.  We qualified for a rebate in the form of free product.  They sent us just plain Vectra which is just for flea control.  We needed and should have gotten Vectra 3D which we need to control the damn ticks that attack Chance.  I emailed the company about two months ago…no response, then I called and left a message.  I emailed them again and finally got a response …they would make the substitution and I should mail the other product back in a postage paid envelope they would provide.  Easy Peasy..NOT.  The correct replacement came in the mail alright, but the envelope was not postage paid and the envelope was too small for the return product. ARE THEY FREAKING IDIOTS?  I wrote a note suggesting that they didn’t know their product or their butt from a hole in the ground and felt I should not have had to go out and purchase a mailer and postage because of their STUPID mistake. I have not heard back from them.  I suppose I could have just kept both products..but I am honest to a fault sometimes.  I think they should reimburse me for my costs and send an apology in the form of free product or something.  Well $40.00 is $40.00.

So all in all my complaints were handled…some good and some not so good.  Now if I could get  all my weather related complaints handled by email or mail then life would be good.

We are staying warm, we still have sewer, water and electricity many people are not so lucky this year.  The recent high winds took out electricity in many areas. I wonder if the winter will ever end.

Blog Signature

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Wistful Wednesday: Luis

In the summer of 1978 a Foreign Exchange Student from Costa Rica came to live with my parents.  My other baby brother Jody and my sister Julie were still at home.  Jody was a Senior that year.  My baby brother Carey was a newlywed and lived in Oklahoma or maybe Colorado by then.

Luis amd a cake  1978

My parents had a welcoming party for him down in the Recreation room at the resort on Straight Lake.  In this photo I see a friend  of my brother in the background..Tom L. I think and a couple of my cousins.  That is long time area resident and friend Grant looking at the cake.

Luis spoke mostly Spanish and his English was limited, but he got better as the year wore on.  He had never seen snow before…rest assure he got to see lots of it while he was here.  It was interesting and he was a great kid. Our daughters Trica and Jennifer adored him.

Luis 1979 the day he left

Julie, Me, Luis, I am holding Jennifer and Trica is in front of Julie.

This is the day he left Minnesota, we were waiting to send him off on a bus to tour some of the United States before heading home.  He sent me this photo on the back it says “Do you remember this day? My last day in Minnesota.”

Trica and Jennifer were quite upset, they didn’t know why he had to leave. Hard to explain to young children that someone they have grown to love over a year has to head back to his own home.

The kids in his graduating class took up a collection and bought him a plane ticket back for their 10th reunion in 1989.  He borrowed Far Guys car to go to town.  People at the gas station wouldn’t believe him when he said he didn’t know how to put gas in the car.

We have not heard from him in years.  Have you ever hosted a foreign exchange student?

Blog Signature

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Do you Roku?

We finally had it with Direct TV service to Far Guys TV.   It warmed up and there was still no signal…must be a problem with the cable in the ground someplace. We have been struggling with that signal since Jan 1st, three service calls later still no signal.

We have been sharing one TV, which works fine…just like in the olden days. Let me tell you we need TV in Minnesota in the winter time…and face it two TV’s is better than one. 

One day Far Guy was watching the “searching for signal” message and I said “How about a Roku?”  We researched it a bit, I related what several bloggers had mentioned.  We went to wally world and bought one.

The set up was quick and almost painless…new stuff and old people..anyways we got it all set up.  You do need a Credit Card to set up an account… we signed up for a Roku account and a Netflix account.  ( Netflix is $7.99 a month)

Since our televisions are HD, the color and picture are awesome.  I made another trip to wally world and got another Roku for the Living Room…we can stream off the same Netflix account.

I like animal movies and nearly used up a whole box of Kleenex during Hachi: A Dog’s Tail.  I am enjoying the series Lost also as we never got the channel that aired that series.

We still have a basic package with Direct TV and we now get local channels.   We will see what happens..but I think our Direct TV days are numbered.

So do you Roku?  If so what are your favorite channels?

So far we have Netflix for a paid service. There are others but I heard Hulu Plus has commercials, and I know nothing about Amazon Prime.

PBS is free, as is a weather channel, History, A&E and Smithsonian…oh and BYU.  I like a few programs on BYU and you can catch their live stream.  There are hundreds of channels to choose from, some are free, some you pay a yearly fee.  We found Crackle to be irritating with repetitive commercials, they have more commercials than regular TV.

For those of you who do not Roku, it is a small box that connects to your television with a HDMI cord.  You plug in the Roku and it will find your wireless Internet signal, you get a code to use to access the Roku website and you are all set to go.  The remote control even has a set of earphones that work remotely…fancy smancy.

I have not been paid by Roku to share my experience..just so you know.  Roku 3 is about $98 for the unit and another $24 for the cable (or two Direct TV service calls.)


From what I have seen it is a pretty cool little invention!

Blog Signature

Monday, February 24, 2014

Sleigh Parade

Oh it was cold, the wind was raw.  We found a great spot to park, I could lean up against the car for shelter from the wind and take some photos.  Chance enjoyed the whole parade from the backseat.

Sheriffs Posse

The Sheriff’s Mounted Posse

First Sleigh

The first sleigh was on wheels and full of people.

Box Sleigh

An old box sleigh.  This sleigh would have hauled lots of freight.

Unmatched pair

You can see that everyone was bundled up and you can see the horses breath in the photos. This is a small Bob-Runner Sleigh.

Little hyper horse

This little horse was not real happy.  His driver kept encouraging him. A custom made sleigh of some sort.

Santa in his sleigh

If this gentleman would have had a full beard…he could have been Santa in a one horse open sleigh. This is a Speeding Sleigh or better known as a Cutter.

Black hose sleigh

Double runner sleigh or Bob-Runner Sleigh.

small horses small sleigh

Small horses pulling a Cutter Sleigh.

Musical sleigh

An even smaller team..and best dressed!  They had Rock n Roll music too!

Pretty Sleigh Lady

A very pretty sleigh driver.  I think her sleigh usually hauls milk cans.


I thought this was pretty cute!

That was it, the entire parade took less than 10 minutes to go by us. These people and animals were all troopers, traveling from all over to be in the sleigh parade in Hubbard Minnesota for the Annual Sleigh Festival.

It was a fun very cold February afternoon.  I am not a sleigh expert, so if I have miss named a sleigh I apologize!

Blog Signature

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Cold Feet

The river is open in town and the Trumpeter Swans are hanging out.

Cold Feet

I start to shiver when I see their feet on the ice, of course they are well adapted and have a series of arteries and veins wrapped around each other, with the arterial blood being warmer and the venous blood being cooler it all balances out. Waterfowl only lose 5 % of their body heat through their feet.  They can cut that 5% in half by tucking up one leg and foot into the warmth of their feathers.

Cold Feet two

You can barely see that foot tucked up.  I am not so sure how they stay upright for great lengths of time on one foot but they do.

I get cold feet too.  It has been a long winter.  We are back to sub zero weather again.

socks from Nancy These beautiful knit socks will help keep me warm!  Thanks Nancy..they are wonderful!  I have not had a pair of hand knit socks in 62 years.  The last pair I had were knit by my paternal grandmother. So these are special socks and I will try to wear them and not keep them for good.  You all know how that goes…keeping something for a special occasion and never really enjoying it to it’s full potential cause you are saving it for good.

Blog Signature

Saturday, February 22, 2014

Colors to get lost in

Living in a sea of snow makes me yearn for a bit of color.

Colors that make you forget all about the wind blowing the snow around so hard the poor dog must be accompanied outside to do his duty…perhaps he is afraid he will blow away…or get lost in a blizzard.

Peacock feathers so pretty

A long package arrived in the mail.  It was for Far Guy. I figured the Class of 1968 Graduation Tassel was for him and the rest of the package was for me.  We argued a bit about so.

Color Peacock feathers

I put them in a vase.  I photographed them…I am drinking in their beautiful colors.  All the way from California just for me.  Peacock Feathers

They are a bright spot of color on the fireplace mantle, I am certain I am enjoying them far more than my husband so they must be mine.  Thanks a bunch to a weekend rancher in California!

Far Guy is feeling much better today, I just have to keep him hydrated and resting throughout the day and I think he will make a full recovery.

Blog Signature

Friday, February 21, 2014

Ice Caves and the Crud

Have you all heard about the Ice Caves over in Wisconsin?  This is the first year since 2009 that The Apostle Island Ice Caves  have been safe enough to visit.  Here is a link to their facebook page.  Bayfield is only 253 miles from us, and the lure of the Ice Caves is oh so tempting.

Icy world

I wanted to go, until I heard that they are getting over 10,000 visitors a day on weekends.  It is at least a 2 mile hike in icy conditions on the lake…and if you walk along the shore looking at different caves and have a parking spot a long ways away it can be a six mile hike in who knows what kind of weather.  Probably freeze your butt off windy weather.  So I am not going.  Icy Artwork 

Chance and I entertained ourselves photographing the ice on the woodshed.  He followed me around looking up wondering what in the world I was doing. Oh well you have to work with what you have sometimes.

Ice  on the woodshed

Far Guy has the crud ( head cold, body aches, cough) which has made his Trigeminal Neuralgia almost unbearable.  He sleeps a lot and I encourage him to drink plenty of fluids etc…hopefully he will be better in a few days.

I don’t have the crud yet.  Hopefully I can escape it.


  Chance doesn’t have the crud either.  I have become his favorite ball thrower.

Blog Signature

Thursday, February 20, 2014


The Trail Groomers were out the other day. We saw the machine on the way to town.

Trail Groomer

They pack down the snow so that the trail is not so bumpy.

Trail Groomer two

When we used to snowmobile years ago half the fun of snowmobiling was the fresh snow and making your own trail and of course getting stuck in the deep snow…we never went farther than we wanted to walk back in those days.  Now there are miles and miles of groomed trails.  Snowmobiling used to bring winter tourists to this area…not so much anymore..a few years of no snow kinda messed that up. 

While we were in town we made a detour down to the river, it is open and Trumpeter Swans, Canada Geese and Mallard Ducks are there.

A Mallard  Duck Grooming

This Mallard Duck is grooming himself.  I like his orange feet, they show up real well against the snow and ice.

Blog Signature

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Wistful Wednesday: Winter 1978

It seems we had a bit of snow back in 1978 too.  We lived in Moorhead in Regal Estates.

Regal Estates Trica 1978 two

Here is Trica standing on a snow bank at the end of our driveway.  That is our white Gremlin…it was brand new in 1973 we bought it in Florida when we were stationed at MacDill AFB.  Some days Far Guy rode with Denny next door who also worked for the NDANG. Ruth worked at the phone company nights and I took care of Liz and Thad after school.

When we bought our trailer house mobile home it was brand new and we picked this lot in Regal Estates because the lot was on a cul-de-sac and the neighborhood playground  began right there.  It was a safe place to play and I could keep one eye on the girls.  A gal by the name of Kathy lived across the street then they moved to rural Glyndon/ Deb and Ken moved in across the street…they had a whole bunch of little girls.  Susan, Mike, Chadd, Jaynie and Carrie lived next to them then they moved to Glyndon into a new home.

Regal Estates 1978

It looks cold doesn’t it?

When we first moved there in 1975 Dave and Laela, Lisa, Julie and Greg lived next door…then they sold their trailer house and bought a house in Moorhead over by the High School. Then a couple who argued all the time moved in next door in that new green trailer house.  It was embarrassing when you were sitting out in the yard when they had one of their frequent arguments with all their windows open.   The middle trailer house was the home of Jim, Lynne, Tami, Shannon and Tori.  I took care of the kids.  Further on down the way Phil, Lynnette, Jessica and Missy had their home and I also took care of Jess and Missy.

The trailer court was a stepping off point to home ownership for most of us. We lived there from May of 1975 to the summer of 1980 when we moved to a house in north Moorhead.   Mike and Susan still live in Glyndon but will move to the lake this summer, Jim and Lynne still live in Moorhead and Phil and Lynnette moved to Indiana and Deb and Ken moved to Cheyenne Wyoming. I think Denny and Ruth got a divorce…and I am certain that the couple that argued constantly probably got one too.

All those little kids that I took care of so long ago are married and have children..some of which are in college…makes a person feel kinda old.

Blog Signature

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

More Old Games

Ack!  It is a struggle.  I am still organizing and selling, trying to make a dent in the crap fine collectables I have collected over the years.  I like to sell  local on the Facebook site versus eBay which involves packing and mailing.

I don’t know that I am making a dent yet.  Far Guy says “Well,  more stuff is going out than is coming back in.” 

I have quite a mess upstairs…I have a spot to take photos and then local stuff, eBay stuff and rummage sale stuff and donate stuff.   I hope no one is coming to visit that needs a bed for awhile.  One good thing about upstairs as I can leave it a mess and come downstairs!


I am learning as I am going along.  Many things need to be researched.  This is a Puzzle Peg from 1922.  I have to re photograph before I put it on eBay.  I will put all the pegs in the holes.

Did you know that bingo was originally called “Beano” and then someone called out Bingo one time and that was all it took and Bingo was born?

WELL.  How about the game of RIGHT.  Was it some ones miserable failure?  If so I have ten of the cards.



12 ways to make RIGHT.  The cards were hand stamped with numbers. Some numbers overlapped and appear in two rows like R 17 and I 17.  I wonder if that made it more difficult?  The cards are made out of some kind of pressed wood/fiber.  I have had them a long time…20 to 25 years and I cannot recall exactly where I purchased them.  For awhile I was fascinated by really old games and I guess this one qualified.  I have had no luck finding any like it on the web.  I know I am not the only one out there with these cards.  Then again maybe I am and I am filthy rich and don’t know it yet..these cards could be priceless.  Ya sure.


The perfectionist in me wants to know more info about them before I put them up for sale.  Who made them and what year?  And why?   It frustrates me that I cannot find any information…but maybe one of my readers have seen these before..maybe.

Blog Signature

Monday, February 17, 2014


We went for a drive, up to the Tall Grass Prairie.  We are supposed to get a little snow that may blow around some Sunday night into Monday morning…imagine that.Tall Grass Prairie

Not much to see this time of year.  A bunch of brown sticks catching snow.  All of that snow that is captured will give rise to something to behold in July.

Tall Grass Prairie

Green so brilliant it almost hurts your eyes.

I am hungry for green.  As I look back through my photographs I am always drawn to summer photos.  I suppose we need the long winter to really appreciate the short summer.

Purple Prairie Clover (2)

We only have five more months to wait for July and for the Purple Prairie Clover to bloom.

Blog Signature