Thursday, December 24, 2009

Merry Christmas to you all

I know I have not been on much lately. But I did want to get on to wish everyone a very Merry Christmas!!!!!!

May your holiday be a warm and loving one which surrounds you all with those you love. And, God Bless everyone of our men and women in the service, as well as their families, who are unable to be with their loved ones at this time. God Bless all of you too!


Saturday, December 5, 2009

A sling & a prayer

Maybe not a favorite, but defineately a most memorable Christmas memory is one of our first together.

Hubby & I had been married for a couple of years. We'd been living in this old rental house and prior to the season had searched for, let's say, an upgrade in living arrangements.

We looked at some nice places but nothing was open for moving in. We couldn't find anything e loved enough to commit to buying either.

Holiday time rolled around & our search turned from new homes to Christmas trees. As has become our annual family tradition, we traveled to our favorite tree farm, traversed acres of tree rows and hunted that year's perfect tree.

We cut it, hauled it back to the bagging station, loaded it on top of the car, drove home, drug it up the stairs, set it up, strung the lights and hung the decorations. It was beautiful.

Within the week we received the call that one of the places we'd looked at had unexpectedly become available. There were other people wanting the new place so we had to act then or lose out on the deal.

Boxes were packed, address notifications were sent and yes...down came the tree & ornaments were carefully wrapped and put away.

We were off to our new home, and right before Christmas. How exciting!

That was the first & only time I can say I have ever moved a Christmas tree.

There was lots of craziness & hurried unpacking in attempt to reestablish some symblence of normalcy before Christmas.

Do you know how hard it is to place a Christmas tree into a stand, with any stability, a second time? Nature just doesn't grow a perfect trunk. At least not that year. I mean after you have already drilled holes into the trunk in the one place that holds it straight the first time, it just ain't happening right again.

We tried. To get the tree straight meant placing the tree stand screws too close to the previously drilled holes. Move the screws far enough away from the previous holes and our tree looked like it was bending at the waist.

Finally! We found the spot. Perfect tree stand placement.The tree was rapped with lights again and up went the ornaments.

We were officially in our new home. Bring on the holiday.

At some point that same night my husband & I were awakened from our peaceful slumber by the sounds of shattering ornaments as the tree crashed to the floor in the next room.

Standing half asleep, half in disbelief, my husband unplugged the tree, made sure there were no fires about to disrupt and we stumbeled, disappointed, back to bed.

The next morning we cleaned up the mess, salvaged what ornaments we could. Fought the trunk/tree stand battle to no avail and then fashioned a sling from twine rope that wrapped around the upper part of the tree trunk and hooked to a nail in the wall of our new home.

That was our Christmas tree. Once statuesque, now balanced in a tree stand on a prayer and a makeshift sling. At the time we were mortified that this is what our symbol of Christmas had deteriorated into. Now, we just laugh and chalk it up to the many curves one gets thrown in life.

Merry Christmas everyone. Maybe next post I'll recount the story of how my husband ended up in the rosebushes while hanging light on the roof of our house.

Anyone else have a crazy Christmas tale to tell?

I look forward to reading them, feel free to share.


Friday, December 4, 2009

Mania, Monsters & Monk

Hi Gang,
well I guess I'm off to a rousing start on catching you all up, huh?

As overwhelming at this last week has been let's just start there. I have never, and I mean never, since starting this job, been so glad for Friday. I normally could take it or leave it when Friday's come because I love my job. I really do. This week has just been one of those times when you stop yourself and take a good long look at why you chose to do what you do.

At one point this week, I entertained the comparison of how much more enjoyable my day would become if I picked up the stapler calling to me from the corner of my desk and gouged my eyes out with it. I quickly decided against was not dull enough.

So, it is Friday. I am leaving slacker, "I just work here," employees who will never measure up to my personal standards at the door when I walk out of it. Monday is a new day and we will start again....hopefully without the high dollar faux paus, shitty I just work here attitudes and the believe that the company should be grateful to them that they just show up to get a check every pay day.

In the last 8 months there have been cancer scares, career chaos, household remodels, teenage meltdowns, antics and attitudes and somewhere along the feels like a couple hours of each day have been stolen.

Oh, and the arrival of a new pup into our family, who, by the way, I now affectionately call baby huey.

This little guy.....
(and yes, he is a guy...he was playing with a ribbon off of my Mother's Day package and had flipped it onto his back.....I had to snap the picture. It was too cute.)

THIS little guy,
so cute....and cudley.....

turned into my new baby Huey overnight....

Exibit A:(it is likely this picture was taken after he ate his weight in puppy chow, ran after and retrieved an untold number of balls, toys, socks, you-name-it, with a, "pant, pant, pant, please throw it again," look

Exibit B:(This mouth watering picture was likely taken as we arrived home from the store with a rather large bag of replacement puppy chow!)

I have started work on my new book...don't ask. I am very excited about this one and will entertain the idea of putting up teasers at some point but we are a way off from that.

Becca has, I think, made a decision on what college she wants to attend next year.

Aaron has made honor band with an invitation to try out for state band.

Steven has found love (but I am not supposed to tell anyone so keep it on the down-low)

Megan is looking for a new career...while she loves being a hair stylist...she is finding life isn't always what we want and sometimes we have to make sacrifices to live in this world.

I am now officially the General Manager of the newspaper

Rob is happy at his work and perfecting his BBQ smoking techniques at every opportunity.

Brandy is getting old and lets Koda know in no uncertain terms when she has had enough.

Koda is eating his way to Utopia.

Well gang, in a very tight nutshell, there you have it. My crazy life update in a 10 minute blog.

It is late and I have a date with Becca to watch the final episode of Monk in 45 minutes...we've been planning this for months now. I think I have it all solved. I know why Trudy was killed! But, who knows.....they could throw me for a loop.

Becca claims I have ruined the finale for her (I HAD to tell her my version of what happened- I have to be right and beat them to the punch like that.)

I'll let you know if I was right...Talk to you all soon.

Have a great and relaxing weekend if I don't post or hear from you sooner!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

8 months.....Wow, that's a long time

Well, guess I better get to catching people up and get my butt back on track. Unless I was writing to you from the grave, because that is just way too long to even come up with any excuse other than life!

I will get something up soon...I catch you all up and begin posting again.

In the meantime.....I will leave you with the worlds cutest superhero!

Isn't he just the cutest! (yes, I know that was a question.....but I am a grandma and can make it a statement that ends in a ! So there!

Talk soon,

Thursday, March 12, 2009

My Love

I love a pencil. 

March 10th Photo

I don’t care how much I’m on a computer (and I write for a living so that is a LOT ) I will never fall out of love with the feel of writing. The feel of the lead as it scratches across a piece of paper. I guess I just need that tactile satisfaction.

Plain and simple...
I like pens.

But I love a pencil.

I know - I’m very weird.

But I’m okay with it.

Okay - so it’s Tuesday’s photo and I have a ton of things to do....You almost got a joking comparison on why I love a pencil.

You know....Sturdy wood...Always says what I tell him to...Sometimes a little dull but can be sharpened...Doesn’t have to ask for directions because he writes them down...My pencil makes my fingers look skinny...Never argues with what I have to say...Erases his own mistakes....yadda, yadda, yadda, insert all the bad jokes here.

Trust got the better version by just hearing that I love my pencil.

Meet Catherine

She remembers celebrating the salmon runs in Oregon’s rich Columbia River. 

March 9th Photo(s)

Where the salmon were thick and plentiful and the river’s spray cleansed her soul. 

The first salmon run of the year always heralded a traditional Wasco Indian Celebration - traveling for four days in horse drawn wagons, gathering huckleberries and harvesting the salmon - just as her own mother had done. 

She is a Wasco Indian and has fond memories of growing up on the Warm Springs Indian reservation .

Catherine taught her own daughter, Mavis, the Wasco ways of knowing when the salmon would be plentiful.

“In spring, when the fields fill with yellow flowers, the rivers will fill with salmon,” Catherine says.

Meet Catherine...



She’s real.

Cherish your past.

A rare sighting

March 8th Photo
The average person would think that this is just an everyday photo. The average person would not realize that in this photo I have captured the rare, exotic, once in a lifetime, full on shot of my oldest male child.

Considering that this is a normal shot of my son:

Or the even more famous duck and cover maneuver....He's perfected this one!
So, to capture a photo like the one above, I have had to develop the stalking skills of a national Geographic photographer or resort to using my grandson (who ADORES my son & has Stephen wrapped around his little finger) as a tool for capturing my own son in pictures!

You know it is over when...

March 7 Photo
I drive by this location quite often and it always makes me laugh to see this monument to love.

At first glance it is nothing more than a stone moniker designating the homestead of the Thompsons.

At second glance you notice that all may not be well at the Thompson ponderosa.

Ronnie and his bride must have had a pretty good falling out.

Keep in mind this is one  BIG STONE. (The sign not Ronnie....I guess)

If you look very closely, on the left, where it names Ronnie and his bride....well, she is no longer named....and yes, there used to be a name there. 

Wonder if she got that part of the ponderosa in the divorce....or if she pissed him off so bad he chiseled that sucker right outta there!

Wow, bet there's a story behind that one...and I am sure he hired some company to come out and remove her name from the stone.

But it is more fun to imagine him out there with chisel in one hand, hammer in the other and him just sweatin' away his frustrations as he chips away at her name until the last reminder of her is gone!  

Can't you just see it?????

I can, and its pretty darn funny.

Friday, March 6, 2009

Blooming Orange

March 6th Photos

These flowers are from a dear friend's funeral on Wednesday. 
A couple of the arrangements ended up at my house and by today 
the gladiolas were just beginning to start blooming. 
They are absolutely beautiful. 
I thought I would share a shot or two 
or even three with you.

Okay, so the last one isn't of a gladiola but a carnation....It is still very pretty!

Have a wonderful weekend and I'll talk to you all soon. 

Can you see what I see?

March 5th photo

What do you see?

Most rooms in my home are fairly modern. And,  I guess, so was this one until I pulled up the carpet that someone laid in our master bedroom's bathroom! 

(Sorry if I offend anyone....Well, no I'm not...but anyway....I will never understand why anyone in their right mind would ever, and I mean EVER, put a full floor of carpet in ANY bathroom.)

So now when I am occupied in the bathroom (how do you say that with class?) I tend to stare at the ugly, gold flecked, 1970's, did I say ugly?, linoleum that covers the floor of my bathroom. 

Now for those of you who know me this next statement is not likely to come as such an odd one...for those of you who don't know me, well, your just lucky to not have experienced this twisted world I live in. 

As I stare at this freak of home design nature I tend to see things. (Yes, I know what this sounds like) I do this with a lot of items that have patterns to them. When you get down to it, its a bit like cloud watching, only different. 

I've been known to see horses in bare tree limbs, faces in walls, The Virgin Mary in my mashed potatoes...not really on the last one but you get the point. 

So, as I asked you before...what do you see in this picture?
Me? I see a face.
A face wearing glasses.
Hell, maybe it's Lennon. 

Oh Crap! John Lennon is watching me in my bathroom!

Okay, this rant could just get worse (or maybe it can't because I'm the only one that is likely to see just where this could go.) so I'll end it here.

Have a great day. Talk to you all soon.

Don't point your fingers just yet...

I haven't fallen off of the photo wagon already

I have not posted them due to lack of time but I have taken my picture a day so I will get to posting them right away!

Here is my photo for Wednesday the 4th. 
I caught our guys putting out a fire. There were a lot of hay-bales lost in this mess. Not a good thing when this is the feed that get many farmers through this time of year!

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

I can’t wait for Spring to spring!

I am tired of being cold. 


I have had to be outside quite a bit for work lately and BBBBRRRRRrrrrrrr....I am NOT a cold weather person....unless of course I am experiencing it  through a double paned window from inside my  warm home with no reason to venture out. Then, snow it beautiful! 

I’ve decided to try to snap one post worthy photo a day for a year.....please muffle your snickers.....I thought maybe it would help me post more regularly on this blog. 

My basement is still studs, cement and insulation, no progress there. It’s been too cold and life has kept us too busy. 

My youngest daughter is starting her Jr. year panic about college after she graduates high school, I just keep telling her to take it easy concentrate on her grades and the rest will work

 itself out. I’ll admit that she is my drama queen but she is a great kid, has an even bigger heart and is dedicated to going after what she wants in life and succeeding at it. I am really proud of her. 

What are some of  your stories for getting your children through that stressful time? 

Well, it is still early in the day and I need to get some work done so I’ll talk to you all soon.

By the way.... whoever stops in to my humble little place here on the web....thanks, I really do appreciate you all.


Now, here’s a photo or two from this morning....what you won’t see is the ice and snow on the ground!  But it does look like there may be love in the air for this little Red Bird and his friend. 

Have a wonderful day. 

Friday, February 13, 2009

Ms. Cranky Pants

 I don’t have many days that drain me but today is dreary, cloudy, my head is pounding from a sinus headache and I just have no energy to get going. It really is just a blah kind of day. I have clients to meet with and I would rather be curled up in my bed under my comforter snoozing the morning away instead of talking advertising or doing interviews. The office is quiet this morning and while usually that is a welcomed (and RARE) event, today the lack of chaos is making me want to crawl under my desk and sleep!

 I am off to get meetings out of the way.... maybe I’ll be in perkier spirits upon my return!

 Have a wonderful day...hope it is sunny where ever you are.

 Arrrgh! I just went to post this little ditty and you know what.....I couldn’t get signed you know why???? Because someone using my computer decided to sign me out so that they could access their own blog when they should have been working!

 This is my computer and occasionally one of my part-time writer’s needs to access something via my Mac...well I have found she likes to sign in on several programs that bump me when another user signs in. This really pisses me off.... so, I guess I’ll have to have the talk.

  One would think that when one is a ‘guest’ on another’s computer...especially when the guest is using the computer for work reasons....that the guest/employee wouldn’t take the time to be screwing around!

 I’m off my soapbox and off to reset all my damn passwords.... talk to you all soon.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Miss me?

Okay, so I have given up trying to say I am going to do the daily blog and then follow through...Life just gets in the way and makes a liar out of me. So once again I’ll catch you up and we’ll see just how long I’ll hang in there before the next train of life arrives to carry me off.

Besides, I am not sure there are that many readers out there who are greatly affected by my words of wisdom so I'm pretty sure I am safe.

My last post was about my buddy, Gabe. I have since lost my best pal. I still get quite emotional over his loss so we won’t go there for now. I’ll just say I miss him like crazy and I’m happy to at least have spent one last Christmas with him.


The holidays were great. Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve and day were spent with my husband, kids and grandson. The weekends after were spend with extended family and always make for a wonderfully memorable time. I miss being around my family (that group specifically) so much.


Not long after ringing in the New Year (well that Monday following actually) I was hit with a horrible flu monster, and the City’s sewer main decided to back up and flow freely into the entire lower level of my home...we are still recovering from that one. Construction will be ongoing for a while because we’ve had to tear down everything but the studs and begin the rebuild process.


The good news for you...well dearest friends and blog readers, you will get to witness a process that will document the near killing of one another by my husband and myself as we ride the remodeling rollercoaster! Lucky you.


Really we aren’t that bad and work well together but we do take the opportunity to harass one another thoroughly during these DIY type jobs.


While the City has been kind enough to reimburse us for the expense of their screw up (yes they admitted it was their fault!) Their gift of kindness was not quite enough to completely replace what they destroyed. So as we pay from our own pockets to get the second half of our living and storage space back, please forgive me if I get a little sarcastic and moody.


Yesterday, just as I entered a cranky/this is costing me money I shouldn’t have to spend/why me/ I miss my dog, diatribe, the phone rang. Now I hate talking on the phone but this particular phone call did put me in a better mood because it allowed me to have a little fun at someone else’s expense.  


Sometimes it really is just the little things that make me happy.


I received a call in which the caller informed me I had been chosen to receive a $5,000 grant from the U.S. Government. Me? How exciting, because who does not want free money? Especially when everyone is screaming about how tough times are.


It must have been my excitement, because I had to ask this very kind person on the other end of the phone to please speak slower so that I could understand what they were saying. I am sure it was not the heavy accent that troubled my ears, it had to have been the fact that I had just been given 500,000 pennies from heaven and rapture was singing loudly between my ears making any comprehension of what these angelic messengers were telling me much harder to understand.


As the phone call continued I was repeatedly assured that this miraculous gift NEVER had to be repaid to the US Government. I questioned why I had been chosen for this wonderful gift, because I didn’t recall applying for any personal grants for that specific amount - the smaller ones had been denied already and that million dollar grant for the remodel of the mansion had just a little more red tape to get through before final approval.


The answer was simple enough, the angels explained. Apparently the US Government had received - now see if you can believe this miracle of miracles- 40-Hundred-Trillion dollars from overpaid taxes by US citizens. (I had to repeat this back because I thought I misunderstood. I had not)


AND, these monies were going toward helping people globally! And they picked little ol’ me to receive $5k of that honey pot. I was told this happened because I paid all of my bills to the US Government on time! Will wonders never cease? They must have heard through the grape vine that I was in process of a basement remodel. I knew my diligence would pay off someday.


They assured me I couldn’t use this money for illegal activities and that they would be happy to deliver this money to my doorstep. How nice of them. Too good to be true? Surely not, but one can never be too careful. Better proceed carefully, I told myself.


The nice lady on the other end told me that I would be receiving my money very shortly, my new friends (and I call them this because suddenly they were close enough to call me Honey and Dear) only needed to know where I wanted my money deposited. It was that easy.


Remembering I’d told myself to be careful of potential scammers, I decided to take the doorstep delivery option. When I advised the angels I had to be careful because I didn’t want to be scammed and that they could just bring the money to my home instead of bothering to deposit it in my account, our connection seemed to falter.


As I explained to them I wanted to be careful so as not to get scammed they seemed offended. I reminded them of how careful one must be in today’s times. They agreed and informed me that doorstep delivery did come with a fee of $99.  Shortly after I questioned these angels on what it would take to get a loan of $99 from them so that I could get my grant money, the connection was lost completely. 

Too bad, I could have really used that $5k. It’s okay though, I’m sure they’ll call back again closer to the delivery date. If I don’t hear from them soon maybe I can call them back at the number they left me, 509-588-7561.