Friday, August 29, 2008
Today, the carpet cleaner is coming so I had to put a bunch of stuff from the living room on the kitchen table. I moved the fly strip so it wouldn't stick to anything under it. I decided to hang it off the light fixture the formal dining room to get it out of the way. We don't use that room either so I knew it would be okay to have it hanging down further than it usually is.
Well, not everything from the living room fit in the dining room so I started packing things into the formal dining room and damn if I didn't forget that fly strip was there. I was hauling a small table in there when OH MY GOD I got that fly strip stuck in my hair! I just about died. I tried not to move any more than I had to but it still stuck to my shirt. I had to TOUCH IT to get it off of me and out of my hair! Not only are those things sticky, but it had flies in it!!!!
This seriously, was probably the most disgusting this that's ever happened to me. I'll never feel clean again!!!!
Wednesday, August 27, 2008
They gave her a shot of steroids and some pills but said if she's not eating better by Friday to take her back. We'll have her put to sleep because even though we could have more time with her, we refuse to let her starve to death. So, we may have 2 days left with her or at the most, a month.
She was the cutest puppy!
She and Daisy, our Goldendoodle, are SUCH good friends. Daisy will miss her so much.
Rosie and Daisy when Daisy was a baby.
I've been trying not to think about it, I hate to cry. We're sure going to miss her...
Tuesday, August 26, 2008
Monday, August 25, 2008
The fire is rapidly burning through dry brush in the area of Amity and Holcomb roads. The fire broke out just after 7 p.m. in the Oregon Heights subdivision.
Residents were told by firefighters to turn on their sprinklers and evacuate their homes. Evacuees are being told they can go to a nearby LDS church for assistance and to wait out the fire.
Michael Robinson said he heard a loud bang and then watched the fire rush across a field. In less than a minute, Robinson gathered up his wife and dog, and their two cars. The couple got out with just the clothing on their backs. He says houses were just "blowing up." It was very hard to watch. He says they lost everything in the fire.
Dozens of fire crews, including the Bureau of Land Management and city fire engines are in the area trying to tamp down the flames.
The fire is burning in the area of an Idaho Power substation, and flames are very close to it. So far, crew have been successful in keeping the flames away from the substation.
So far, there have been no reports of any injuries from these fires. Everyone managed to get out safely.
Boise Fire Chief Dennis Doan says this is the largest fire response in his 20 years with the department.
Sunday, August 24, 2008
The kids go back to school tomorrow! We've had a summer with a house full of 14-year-old boys eating us out of house and home. In fact, I usually don't know who's here and how many, other than I learned to count the pairs of shoes at the bottom of the stairs.
Thank goodness. I'm ready!
Wednesday, August 20, 2008
This is Buddy watching Elmer sprinkle his treats with the hot sauce. He went through two bottles, using up his "Butt Burner" and having to finish off with "Texas Tongue Torcher."
Hopefully, the turd burglar will be broken.
Monday, August 18, 2008
Last Thursday night, I woke up at 4am to the chickens making a terrible racket. I grabbed the flashlight and ran out to their pen. Standing about 3 feet from me, inside with the chickens, was a skunk.
We have a long metal strip that runs down one side of the pen to give the chickens cover, so I started pounding on the metal, screaming at the skunk, then realized, YOU IDJIT! THAT'S A SKUNK! So, I ran back inside, woke up Elmer and we went out only to discover that the skunk was gone and my favorite chicken, Napoleon, was dead.
I LOVED Napoleon, he was our ostrich-chicken.
Sunday, August 17, 2008
After they passed my station, each child and their family member went to a table and took out the pictures they had brought of the person(s) they were there to remember. They decorated a frame and put the picture onto a magnetic back. Some then took their pictures to their cabins, while others placed them on the Memory Board.
I remember during one of our meetings, someone saying that one child who was attending was the child of a murdered parent. We're not allowed to know anything more about the kids than our particular jobs required, but there was a small part of me that was curious to know who the child was that had gone through a similar situation as me. I looked at all the pictures that had been placed on the board, many were obviously grandparents, many mothers and fathers, 4 babies. I wondered again, if the murdered parent was on the board.
I noticed one particularly handsome young man who was obviously a commercial pilot from his picture. Another I noticed, was obviously a firefighter, dressed in his bright yellow garb, his blackened, dirty face, grinning. I assumed he had died in a fire.
Later that evening, all the pictures were taken off the board. We sat in a big half circle as we waited for each child to take their picture up, and if they chose to, say who the picture was of, and what their relationship was to the child.
As we waited, an adorable boy, I thought to be about 10, came and sat next to me.
"I hope we get to swim tonight. I love to swim."
"I think swimming is tomorrow."
"Well, I'm a good swimmer, so I hope they'll let me swim past the ropes. Last year, they made us stay inside the ropes."
I laughed and told him that even though he was a good swimmer, we had to make sure that all the kids were safe.
"So you were here last year?" I asked.
"Yea, this is my second year. My father died."
"I'm so sorry. Do you want to tell me about it?"
"Well, he was murdered by my uncle. He had schizophrenia and he came to my house and shot my dad. He's in jail now. It's pretty sad, he's going to be there a long time."
Then his cabin was called and he stood up and took the picture of the firefighter that I had seen earlier, and walked to the board. He quietly told about his father, and how he had died, then came and sat next to me.
I could hardly believe that within 2 hours of the children's arrival, I had somehow met the child I was so curious about. I discovered he was actually almost 14, he was quite small for his age, but he had the most beautiful eyes.
We talked several times over the weekend when we saw each other. Once I asked him what he wanted to be when he grew up and he said he wanted to be a biologist - he loves animals - even snakes. As I worked with the horses, he asked me about dad. We had something in common.
On the last evening, we had a ceremony where each child had decorated a bag in honor of the person they had lost. We lit candles put them inside each bag and sent them out into the lake on a specially-made wooden raft as three of us read the names of all the people being remembered. It was almost more than I could bear, a beautiful full moon had come up over the trees, huge, like you could almost touch it, and hearing the children sobbing as the beautifully lit luminaries peacefully floated out to the middle of the lake.
At the end of the ceremony, I went and held some of the little girls, but I couldn't help noticing my little friend, standing on the beach, quietly crying, wiping the tears. After helping with the girls, I walked over to my friend and sat next to him.
"I don't know if you believe in signs, but if you do, look at that beautiful moon. I think your dad is telling you that he's ok, he's watching you and he'll always watch over you. It's ok to be sad, you'll never stop thinking about him and you don't want to."
He nodded. "I think I get signs from my dad every time I go to bed. When my dad was shot, I was home alone with him and I hid in a dark closet when my uncle shot him. Now I'm afraid of the dark. But every night when I go to bed, I say a prayer and I feel like my dad is there with me."
I comforted my little friend until he was ready to leave the beach then walked back to the lodge with a lady I really liked. I cried all the way back, but they were quiet tears - tears for my little friend, and all the children I had the good fortune to meet.
Later that evening, I saw my little friend again, eating his ice cream sundae alone. I sat across from him and we talked about things. He loved watching CNN with his mom and was very into politics. He then proceeded to tell me all the things you could see in the full moon, he and his mom did it often, a rabbits head, and some other things I had never heard. We talked again about his dad, and mine. I told him how sorry I was that he had to go through something like that at his age and how glad I was that I had been older.
"Really, I'm glad I was younger. I had school, and friends, and other things I had to do that kept me busy. If I had been older, like you, I think it would have been harder for me."
I couldn't imagine if I had seen what he had seen.
"I've been kind of mean to my mom lately. I'm going to apologize to her when I get home."
"You know, I bet she understands. She probably knows how hard this has been for you. She knows you love her."
So then we talked about politics, I asked him who I should vote for and why and he proceeded to tell me he liked Obama and why. I was totally impressed. Here was a boy Adam's age who was wise beyond his years.
As it was getting time to go to our cabins, I asked him what he had enjoyed most about the weekend. I expected to hear about the horses, every kid I had asked that question to had said they loved the horses the most.
"Well, I've done some really fun things that I'll always remember, but the best part, the part that will make a difference in my life, was meeting wise adults like you and her" as he pointed to my friend I had walked back to the lodge with.
"I always learn a lot from adults."
I couldn't believe it. What kid says something like that?
"You are wise beyond your years" I told him. "You're going to grow up to be someone really special."
It was an experience I'll never forget, be forever grateful for, and look forward to repeating next year. And hopefully, my little friend will be back. He said he was going to come every year until he's old enough to be a volunteer. I'm so grateful to have crossed paths with him.
Life is good...
Wednesday, August 13, 2008
I was sound asleep on the couch last night (Elmer was snoring upstairs in the BED) when I woke up to sound of of the 3 dogs racing down the stairs. Right behind them came Elmer in his undershorts.
"What are you doing?"
"Daisy just barfed on the floor and I tried to clean it up but I keep throwing up"
"Oh for heavens sake, I'll go up and clean it up."
Before I can make it upstairs, he's in the downstairs bathroom throwing up again. I trudge upstairs, still half asleep with the roll of paper towels and carpet cleaner. I search and search, looking for the big pile of nasty stuff. Nothing.
"Where did she barf? I can't find it."
"Right at the foot of the bed."
I kid you not, one spot was the size of a silver dollar and another the size of a quarter. I clean it up and go back downstairs.
"I can't believe those two tiny spots made you throw up."
"Well, I'm sorry, you know I can't stand that stuff."
Oh Dear Lord...
Elmer swears he's done snoring, so I head upstairs with him to sleep in the bed. After about 30 minutes, I hear Daisy - sick again. Elmer makes a run for the bathroom.
"Sorry, I can't clean it up." So he steps over it and I tell him to go ahead and take the dogs downstairs and sleep down there. I'm too tired to do this again so I'll wait until morning.
Again, I go to clean up the mess. Again, it's the size of a quarter. So, I go downstairs.
"What the hell, you stepped OVER that tiny spot - you couldn't clean that up? It was the size of a quarter for God sakes!"
"Well I SORRY! You know I can't do that."
So I kissed Elmer goodbye before he left for work.
"I'm still kind of mad at you."
"Mad at ME? Why?"
"For making fun of me last night."
"Well, dear, I just can't help it. You're just weird."
Then this morning as I was telling mom this story, she reminded me how when Elmer and I were dating, she used to have to keep brown paper bags on hand at home because he would hyperventilate. At least he's outgrown that.
Ya gotta love him...
Tuesday, August 12, 2008
We started our farm with chickens and quail.
I chronicled Elmer's attempt to catch SOB - the elusive raccoon. Final score SOB 314 - Elmer Fudd - 0.
I made fun of Kate.
I attended Casting for Recovery - what a great program!
Mom and I traveled to Toronto and had some wonderful experiences with some of the local folks. http://livinglifewithchemobrain.blogspot.com/2007/08/toronto-oddities.html
I made fun of Linda.
In honor of mom's 76th birthday, we rode the rapids of the mighty Payette River.
I blogged about everyone in the family - and all their oddities.
I was run off the road by a drunk driver at 10:00 in the morning.
Linda got married.
I decided to move to Belize.
I made fun of Kate again.
I told you "More than you ever wanted to know about me" - boy, was that embarrassing! (this one I am NOT linking to)
I busted my arse in the parking lot at Idaho State Police...
I went to work for a Private Investigator.
My sisters and I decided to get our noses pierced on one of our "girls weekends"
Mom and I went on a cruise with Medium Lisa Williams - hoping dad would come through.
I decided if I couldn't move to Belize, Elmer and I should buy property and open a wall tent hotel I discovered how woefully pathetic my life is by becoming very excited when I received an email from a friend about how Aluminum foil rolls have these little pokey-in things on each end that makes it so the foil doesn't come flying our every time you try to tear it off the roll.
I learned a few more important things about lifehttp://livinglifewithchemobrain.blogspot.com/2007/09/life.html
After going through pictures on my computer to put them onto disks, I discovered that for some reason, people end up with my underwear on their heads
I made fun of Linda again.
I signed up for Camp Erin.
Elmer made me get rid of the wonderful old brown couch and (matching mind you!) brown chair on my front porch.
Mom and I went to see Stomp!
I discovered the Amazing Presto bucket (still haven't got one though).
My sister-in-law Ruth completed an Iron Man Triathlon!
Adam got sprayed by a skunk.
We won a trip to San Diego...
And I found 2 old friends from second grade!
What a great year it's been!
I do believe, however, it's time to make fun of Linda and Kate again...
Monday, August 11, 2008
Then, he loved it and acted like he was in a giant bathtub.
He was quite fascinated with the little fountains. Reminded me of both Grace and Allie when they first got in the pool.
I have the greatest grand kids!
Yesterday, our neighbor came over and asked Elmer if we wanted to go halves with him on some more chickens. The place he wanted to order from only shipped a minimum of 25 chicks at a time. Elmer wanted me to look up Dunlop Hatchery, it's local and you can get only as many chicks as you want without having to place a big order. I saw the words "Dunlop Hatchery", clicked on it, and then "WARNING, YOU HAVE JUST BEEN INFECTED WITH A VIRUS, DO YOU WANT TO REMOVE IT?"
Well, hell ya, I want to remove it! Click. That's all it took. I then had a wonderful Malware thingey (yes, that's the technical term) that popped up a warning every time I tried to go into my email, look at any page on the web, or even when my computer was resting. In order to remove this Malware I had just inadvertently placed on my computer, I had to buy their virus removal! WTF! It was called "Antivirus xp 2008". It's a new one and if it pops up on your computer, DON'T CLICK ON ANYTHING except NO. Otherwise, you'll load it on your computer.
My neighbor who works on computers, spent the whole afternoon, from 11-4 trying to get it off and when he did, it took some of my registry files with it so he had to go home and download new files.
She's back in working order but boy did I learn NEVER TO DO THAT AGAIN! It was hard being without it for even those few hours! As he was loading the missing files, he asked if I had anything irreplaceable on my computer.
"Do you do any "work" on it that you can't lose?"
"Um, work? No"
"The only copy of last year's taxes or files like that?"
"Um, people do that stuff of their computer? No."
"I play games and blog"
Thursday, August 7, 2008
Just got home and checked my email, and there was a reply from someone I had emailed several days ago wondering if it was Claire Wycoff - and it was!!! I'm so excited to finally have found my childhood friend. I truly feel like an important piece of my life's puzzle has been put in place.
I can't wait to hear back from her to find out what she's been doing for the last 44 years.
Life is good!
No prayer of survival
When Lomong was 6 years old, the second son in a line of six children born to a farmer in the village of Boya, Sudan was taken from his parents at gunpoint by the Janjaweed government militia while attending Catholic Mass. He was to be trained as a soldier, or starve to death. During three weeks of imprisonment, he ate once a day, a mixture of sorghum and sand.
Run for the border
Three older boys, all around age 14, had discovered a hole in the fence surrounding the prison camp and decided to attempt an escape and to bring Lomong with them. "They told me, 'You're going home', even though they knew we weren't," Lomong said. "They said that so I would join them. They were trying to save my life." For three days Lomong and his friends ran toward safety in Kenya. When they reached the Kenyan border, the three teens were too old to be accepted into a refugee camp, were arrested and returned to Sudanese officials. Only Lomong was granted refuge. "Anything I do in life, I put those guys in front," says Lomong, who cannot recall their names and has no idea if they survived. "They were more than brothers to me."
Schooling sets him free
Lomong spent 10 years living in the Kakuma Refugee Camp in northern Kenya, where he learned to write by drawing letters in the sand with his finger. But that rudimentary education was enough to help earn him liberation. "They told us that the U.S.A. wants to give 3,500 'Lost Boys' homes," Lomong said. "They said if you want to come to America, write an essay explaining why." For two nights Lomong and many of his friends worked in silence. "I remember it felt like taking a test," he said. "I just sat down, the whole of my mind emptied onto the paper. I wrote some of it in Swahili, I wasn't even aware of it." One month later, his essay was chosen by the Joint Volunteer Agency, and he was on his way to America.
Out of Africa
When Lomong came to the U.S. along with the other "Lost Boys of Sudan," he was adopted by Robert and Barbara Rogers, a couple who lived in Tully, New York. But life in the rural town was unlike any he had ever experienced. Lomong did not know how to flush a toilet and began looking for sacks of corn when told the house was stacked with food. His first night was spent sleeping with the light on because he didn't know there was a switch to turn it off. His first shower at the Rogers' home was cold. He thought nothing of that. Lomong had only bathed in streams or cold water. The second time, the shower was scalding. He stood under the blistering spray for a second or two, then stepped out of the stall. Then back in. Then back out. Until he was clean.
Makings of a champion
One day, Lomong asked Robert Rogers if he could go out on a 30 kilometer run, the same distance he ran along the perimeter of the refugee camp in Kenya daily. Unsure of exactly how long 30 kilometers was, Rogers called his friend Jim Paccia, a high school track coach, and asked him. Paccia immediately signed Lomong up for cross-country. Before the first race, Paccia tried to keep things simple for Lomong, instructing him to go to the front and not to let anyone beat him. Lomong went on to win a New York state championship in the mile.
Lomong spent a year at Norfolk State University in Virginia before transferring to Northern Arizona, where he could train at mile-high altitude. In 2007, he won the 3000m at the NCAA Indoor Track & Field Championships and the 1500m at the NCAA Outdoor Championships. A month later, he became a United States citizen. After competing at the NCAA cross-country championships in the fall, Lomong turned professional and signed a sponsorship deal with Nike.
Before coming to live in the U.S., Lomong witnessed one day of Olympic history, a day in Sydney when sprinter Michael Johnson was in action. He paid five shillings, the equivalent of 7 cents that he'd earned for watering a cow in Kenya, to watch on a tiny black-and-white TV powered by a car battery. Lomong met Johnson at the Olympic Trials and told him that he inspired him to become an Olympic runner.
Lomong isn't expected to win any medals. But somehow I don't think that's whats important to him. When he learned he had been chosen to carry the United States flag in the opening ceremony he said, "I feel great, I feel happy, honored. I'm feeling so blessed to get an opportunity to represent the United States of America, to present the United States flag in front of my team."
Kate is getting married here at the Hidden Springs Barn. Being in Spokane, there's things she can't do from up there so she's put Jacki and I in charge of them. One is the wedding cake so I've been searching for the "perfect" topper. Here's the short list but I'm counting on you to help us pick the final one...
Kate lived on the Oregon coast for many years and became very fond of seashells. I tried real hard to find the frog playing the guitar topper but this was as close as I could come...
Now this one I think would fit best with her forest theme...
But I think this one is my favorite. I just seems to scream KATE and DAVID!!!!
Whatever we choose, I know Kate will love it. As mom would say (although I haven't heard her say this one in quite a few years!) "That'll learn ya, dern ya".
Wednesday, August 6, 2008
You know we have the only blue turf in the world. Hmmmm - maybe no one else wants it...
Yes, here in just 23 day, 8 hours, and 23 minutes, mom and I will be sitting in her tastefully decorated blue and orange bonus room, giddy with excitement at the thought that we have our Broncos back on her 38" flat screen tv - purchased special to watch our games.
Tuesday, August 5, 2008
But evidently, not everyone shares my love of these comfortable, wonderful shoes. This article is hilarious and has made me re-think wearing them ever again. I keep picturing everyone who happens to be sitting down, quietly laughing at me as I pass by.
My crocs are much like my t-shirts and sweatshirts, I have my everyday ones, and the ones with no stains for when I need to look "good".
I don't have the high heels, I'm not so sure they would look good with my jeans and sweatshirts.
Monday, August 4, 2008
After flights, Qantas pilots fill out 'gripe sheet' forms, which tell mechanics about aircraft problems. The mechanics correct the problems, document their repairs on the form, and then pilots review the gripe sheets before the next flight. Never let it be said that ground crews lack a sense of humor. Here are some actual maintenance complaints submitted by Qantas' pilots (marked with a P) and the solutions recorded (marked with an S) by maintenance engineers.
P: Left inside main tire almost needs replacement.
S: Almost replaced left inside main tire.
P: Test flight OK, except auto-land very rough.
S: Auto-land not installed on this aircraft.
P: Something loose in cockpit.
S: Something tightened in cockpit.
P: Dead bugs on windshield.
S: Live bugs on back-order.
P: Autopilot in altitude-hold mode produces a 200 feet per minute descent.
S: Cannot reproduce problem on ground.
P: Evidence of leak on right main landing gear.
S: Evidence removed.
P: DME volume unbelievably loud.
S: DME volume set to more believable level.
P: Friction locks cause throttle levers to stick.
S: That's what friction locks are for.
P: IFF inoperative in OFF mode.
S: IFF always inoperative in OFF mode.
P: Suspected crack in windshield.
S: Suspect you're right.
P: Aircraft handles funny.
S: Aircraft warned to straighten up, fly right, and be serious.
P: Target radar hums.
S: Reprogrammed target radar with lyrics.
P: Mouse in cockpit.
S: Cat installed.
P: Noise coming from under instrument panel. Sounds like a midget pounding on something with a hammer.
S: Took hammer away from midget
The old farmhouse was scheduled to be demolished to make room for some high end lots since it was nestled among mature trees, located right along the creek. A few people saw the potential of this home to be something special for our community and started doing research.
Phillip L. Schick homesteaded the property in the early 1860s. Schick later built the house. Members of the Schick family lived in the house from the 1860s until 1920 when it was sold to Frank Parsons, a gentleman farmer who lived in Boise. Parsons hired Basque farmers from Spring Valley Ranch to manage the property. In 1927, the family of Costan and Lucia Ostolasa moved into the farmhouse where their descendants lived until 2005.
The farmhouse is about 140 years old and is one of the oldest intact houses in Ada County.
The farmhouse was in surprisingly good condition for its age. The sandstone foundation was sturdy and had its original siding with hand-made nails, and many of the windows still had very old glass. Because of its good condition, the farmhouse was listed in the National Register of Historic Places on August 23, 2006.
People from Hidden Springs came together and started fundraising efforts to save this wonderful piece of history. It's almost completed after only 2 years of hard work by some very dedicated people. They found an actual picture of the original house and were able to restore it back to it's original beauty, including the upstairs balcony and gingerbread work.
It's going to be open to the public and used for school projects such as living history days. How lucky we are to have such a wonderful old home as part of our community.