Thursday, January 26, 2006

The Importance of Love Letters

The Tagged Quandary...

I've been tagged by Jeannie. She was tagged by Marianimal and so on, So now I pass it on to you. I know some of you are not bloggers but you can still leave it on the comments.

Name 8 points in a (your) perfect partner
It's a tall list for me, my poor guy.

  1. Must be motivated, No procrastinators, Druggies, or Alcoholics... Life's to short.
  2. Good Communicator and listener and lover and encourager. Must be able to write good love letters.
  3. A loyal man who will stand & walk beside me, consider me his better half, stick up for me and have good enough knowledge of me to know when I'm right or wrong and help me do the right thing.
  4. This should have been first but here goes...Cleanliness about his person & wears good smelling (to me) cologne, And actually incorporates this into daily plan without any prompting from me.
  5. Be all mine, Not in the relationship looking for an out or staying outside and thinking about being in.
  6. Active with me in the problem solving department, Working through problems instead of burying his head in the sand. Owning his mistakes and correcting them sooner than later.
  7. Ruggedness with an ability to refine and display an inner character that makes me proud.
  8. Taller than me in heels, Big Chest, Strong Arms, Trim hips, Good Butt and A Lotta Heart!

... I'll have to have the Mr. do this when he gets home to see if I'm meeting his expectations, I might not be able to put his on the blog though we'll see.

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Good Ol' George

This was an email from a friend, I just wanted to share.

Mildred, the church gossip, and self-appointed monitor of the church's morals, kept sticking her nose into other people's business. Several members did not approve of her extra curricular activities, but feared her enough to maintain their silence.

She made a mistake, however, when she accused George, a new member, of being an alcoholic after she saw his old pickup parked in front of the town's only bar one afternoon.

She emphatically told George and several others that everyone seeing it there would know what he was doing.
George, a man of few words, stared at her for a moment and just turned and walked away. He didn't explain, defend, or deny.

He said nothing.

Later that evening, George quietly parked his pickup in front of Mildred's house ...walked home....and left it there all night.

Don't ya just love ol George . . .

Sunday, January 22, 2006

The 2005 Silver Circuit Awards and Banquet

We, the Mr. and I went to an Awards dinner for our Saddlebred Association last night. We had been invited in years past but it always seemed we had something else going at the same time, As the Mr. says jokingly "It's hard to be so popular," Its an inside joke with his hunting partner who was at this dinner also. (He's too busy to go on the hunting trips)

Now, for some reason or another its very hard for us to be on time for these kinds of things...It's either me or him that makes us late, Me with bad hair times and or an overload of other things to take care of first or him not giving himself enough time to get ready for the event. But this time we were only a half hour late and really didn't miss too much.

We were supposed to be there so our items for the silent auction could be placed on the table and people would have enough time to bid on them. We got there and a lady named Anne Byers seen the Mr. packing in his Hand crafted Chrome tack and Bridle hooks and a big grin came across her face and in a second she had them in her mitts but not without a slight bit of resistance from the Mr., It was a playful tug of war and she got her way.

These were created for our own custom show decorations and every detail was taken to make them as special as we could, Right down to the CZ's mounted in the front facing hoof of the chrome horse. I can tell you I actually heard people Oohing and Ahhing over them right after they were numbered and placed on the table.

I think the Mr. was only half ready to donate these to the cause, He thinks of his projects almost like kids, Each thing he makes is a piece of art and needs to have time to feel and study for improvements or just to admire a job well done .
He seemed to have some fondness for these though because he held onto them since 1997.

I did have something to do with the creation of these though, It was in the drawing up of the design and scaling it to size and getting all the plans made to go to the laser cutters and of course, I was as always "quality control" and I'm hard on him too. Miss Fuss Budget, I believe I've heard before, in a fit of do-overs.

(Click picture for enlarged view)

Back to the Banquet...Now the horses are place with all the other nice auction items, Things like a Magnum of Covey Run Merlot, Gift baskets, Gift Certificates, pieces of art, Framed paintings, and a lot of other items well worth bidding on in the silent auction.

There were items that got auctioned off during the awards show also and on that Que I thought an item deserved an honorable mention it was this cobalt blue and crystal polish vase hand cut with a Saddlebred horse carved into one side of it. It was spectacular and I barely could hold myself back from bidding on it. But the piece was quick to increase in price and with good cause it was beautiful! Whew, I was glad that was over when it was.
All the proceeds go to the Northwest Saddlebred Association so we can continue to provide quality shows and perpetuate the history of the breed.

We finally found a place to sit and it was with some of our customers and friends, The Blacklaws, Barry and Denise. It was nice and comfortable. They (the Awards Speaker) tossed a quarter to see which side of the room got to got to the buffet line first and yeah! it was us...There was nice salads and fruit plates first, then the sauteed' green beans with sliced almonds, Now comes the stuffed Chicken breast with I don't know what, but it was good.
I was praying that it wasn't anything shellfish
There was a poached Salmon, It was good but a little to mushy, just a little over cooked for my palate. I think I could have improved that one. And finally these most delicious Scalloped potatoes, they were full of cheesy goodness. Yummmmmmmm! Also a prime rib was being served, Hand sliced to order with horseradish and au jus. Everything was great.

Now on the way to put our horse on display you walk right past another table filled with all these sumptuous deserts, 23 to be exact, all to be auctioned in silence like the other items...all you have to do is write down your given auction number and an amount and the highest bidder gets the dessert of his choice. So the Blacklaws decided to bid on a dessert for our table, And I heard that Denise liked anything but Chocolate, My heart sunk...No Chocolate...I seen this incredible chocolate cake that was a good 4-5 inches high and it was calling my name.

Well, the auction for the desserts went along as planned and a raspberry drizzled cheesecake made it to our table, I really wasn't ready to waste my dessert calories on this I can tell you now, Not when chocolate was already being salivated over in my mind and this just wouldn't do. Luckily the table next to us got the infamous cake I had wanted and offered to share. It was yummy goodness, just as I thought, not to sweet and in the lines of dark chocolate but a tad sweeter.

Meanwhile, The silent auction was underway and the chrome horses were getting some serious attention, Before the night was over they reached a high of $500.00 each. I was absolutely thrilled to see the Mr.s work bring such a handsome reward, And I'm so proud to see that they were appreciated and admired in the same way that I seen them. WooHoo! They ended up the high ticket item on the table.

How fun was that! Thank you to the bidders and the winners you made our night. I knew he was talented and you can see the quality in his work, I'm so proud!

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Hey I'm hooked up...

I have been plugging away with the most irritatingly slow dial up you could possibly ever have, We have a local little Po-dunk Telephone company BCT that has virtually a monopoly on everything, In fact I'm surprised they don't have their hands in our power bills too!
For example I have hooked up at 14.8 Kbps, but the usual was 28.8 Kbps.
This has gone on for years before DSL was available in our area, Mostly because we are rural.
I was getting so P.O.'d everytime I wanted to load a page that I just would click it off in disgust and forget about downloading music or videos.

But I switch to DSL and actually saved myself money by not paying for the extra phone line and the Extended area service (another rip off), The phone company said wow your actually saving money by doing this, Now that scares me, they know I'm saving money...I can expect some kind of a raise in my bill for something soon because they can't have that. I know there's a new building they need somewhere.

DSL is so unbelievable! I had never personally experienced it myself, But OMG I love this! This is a whole new Internet for me and oh what I have been missing....It's just shocking!

... just surfin

The Family Weekend Retreat

I spent most of last Thursday readying myself for a weekend at the beach, As usual I over pack and take way too much with me, But hey. I'm prepared for almost anything. Our last trip to the beach was last September-Way to long between trips when you live only 80 miles away. That's only 3 I love Lucy's and your there.

Rain or no rain we were going. It did end up raining and hailing for the most part but as you'll see in the following pictures it also provided us with some sunbreaks too!

We went to Manzanita Beach on the Oregon Coast just south of the Famous and picturesque beach and shopping Mecca Cannon Beach,

I would have loved to go there but I knew I'd better not. I did however get to do a little shopping in Manzanita.

A couple antique shops, and the way over priced grocery store. Note to self...Buy more groceries at home and avoid that store. Besides they were limited on their diet pop and carried no Diet Rite sodas but they carried 25+ full sugar sodas and 50+ beers and wines, However, no Delicato White zinfandel...What's up with that?

Now the beach house was provided to us by the Baby sis, She was able to get it by way of her boss at work. It was a really nice place and accommodated all of our needs just right.

We had many fun games of Apples to Apples and then the rest of them played poker and drank Crown Royale while I did what I wanted to do...Sleep. I don't know why but the ocean air always relaxes me.

Lil' sis made a nice seafood cocktail, and I drooled over it, I couldn't have it without having an Eppi-pen handy. I really miss Shrimp and Crab.

Now this weekend was a memorial party in memory of my Mom and we all know she would rather us go visit the coast and have good times in her memory than be all depressed in a grave yard somewhere,

15 years ago we poured her ashes into the ocean so we could feel close to her with every visit. I never feel sad there and always feel rejuvenated before leaving.
I need a beach house so I can be there any time I wanted!

This is the Manzanita shoreline looking north.

...And this is looking south from the view point just before dropping down into Manzanita

I had to take this one, It's Sunny...I'm an optimist overlooking the clouds. Hey after 25+ days of rain straight, a sun break looks like heaven and you make as much of it as you can.

Well, a big thanks to the baby Sis for her efforts in making it all happen and it was good to be with the family for enjoyable times always...

Thank you Al and Ester too!
We really appreciated the your home and its accommodations.

Thursday, January 12, 2006

Rain, Rain, Go AWAY PLEASE...

Well, in this picture you can see the 205 Expressway bridge over the Willamette River and it keeps looking shorter and shorter. This river has gotten a lot deeper since I was here on New Years Day.

Ok, and for the benefit of those that have not been reading along with journal, My baby sis has told me that in her eyes its not a flood till the water reaches the and I quote "Toities" Meaning public restrooms.

Well, My darling sis it officially flooding. I was there yesterday and the water was meer feet from the toilets.

She explained to me why she thinks in this way and its because once it reaches that level it then begins to flood in another low lying area on the other side of McLaughlin Blvd. behind the Oregon City Shopping center.

Which is approx. almost the same level as lower parts of Oregon City such as Tonys Fish Market,

Tony's Fish Market
1316 Washington St
Oregon City, OR 97045-1649
(503) 656-7512
(Just a shameless plug)

Which by the way is the best place to buy seafood in our area. This is one of my secrets to fresh tasting seafood dishes.

Now back to the water issue...I did visit the Falls (Willamette Falls) in Oregon City again and Yup, they looked as though the falls was just a little baby rapid which in fact they are quite the drop in altitude on a normal basis. It's just amazing to me to see mother nature at work, I'm just looking for the light at the end of the tunnel now...
We need the sun.

Wednesday, January 11, 2006

A Valentine worth sending...

Because Supporting our Troops
means so much more than just putting
a ribbon shaped magnet
on our car
or a Flag in the window.
Donate a buck
to the troops
and have the money
go directly there...

Operation a bit of home send a Valentine

Monday, January 09, 2006

Oregon City Couple Desperately Needs Your Help

Kevin and Jennifer's Home sliding on the hillside, It has been deemed unsafe and the house is sliding on the foundation. The following pictures are of the surrounding area and of the damage, the thing you can't see is the young family's hearts who are at a loss as what to do next.

This is only the beginning...The News story
KATU 2 News - Portland, Oregon

Mudslide Ruins New Home Dreams of Engaged Couple
January 6, 2006

- Courtesy of a Red Cross press release
PORTLAND, Ore. – An engaged couple was looking forward to a new life together, as they were planning to get married in July in the backyard of the home they purchased last May.

Instead, they are facing a mudslide destroying their home, which is not covered by their insurance policy.

Jennifer Winemiller and Kevin Brown’s house is on a hillside on Newell Ridge Road in Oregon City.

When it started shifting, more than 20 neighbors rushed to help them move their belongings before further damaged occurred.

Jan and Larry Stennick, two Red Cross volunteers residing in Oregon City, provided them with immediate cash assistance for Jennifer, Kevin and their three children for food and lodging at a motel for a week.

“We would have never imagined that this would be how 2006 would begin for us, but we are so grateful to the Red Cross and our neighbors for their support,” said Jennifer Winemiller. “We are now looking ahead to find the resources and financial support so we can one day move back into our home.”

Although Jennifer and Kevin had homeowner’s insurance, they have now learned that their insurance policy does not cover damage from a mudslide.

So far, they have been unsuccessful in finding a policy that does include financial assistance from a mudslide.

Now, I personally have gone to this home and spoke with Jennifer's Father and they (Jennifer and Kevin) are just beside themselves not knowing where to turn. The Red cross has helped within their means but, That will not last much longer.

Later, I spoke with Jennifer herself, She truely needs all the help she can get. Like other couples trying to pull a life together they pool their resources.
This is a young family with kids 11, 6, and 4 years of age.

There is an account set up with

Washington Mutual Bank
in the name of Jennifer Winemiller of Oregon City, Oregon for anyone wanting to help with cash donations, It's easy just go to any Washington Mutual and ask to make a deposit into her account and they will help you.
What this does, It gives this family funds to try to get their life back after this catastrophe and keep them afloat till they can stand on their own feet again.

If you have other means of help that you can offer please contact me and I'll put you in contact with them.

So far Jennifer and Kevin have had to come up with $10,000 just to try and stabilize their home and that's $10,000 that this young family doesn't have to spare....All this and no guaranties that it will save it.
Now, They are looking at $40-60,000 dollars to fix this problem given that it does no further damage and they are able to keep the home from completely sliding off the hillside.

I walked around the grounds as much as I dared and took these pictures, I can tell you the earth under my feet felt just like walking on jello. It was so water logged. I even slipped and fell on my way back up the muddy slope, The situation is pretty dire at this point, Even neighbors are beginning to worry for their homes.

I have found in my 39+ years that people have helped me and my family thru times of low income, and no income, hardly no food, sometimes clothing needs. I am now able to give back because, people have gave to me and helped me stand tall once again, I now ask not for myself but for people that need the same good turn. (Please help me pay it forward)

I hope that I have pleaded for them well enough that you the reader would find it in your heart to either help them financially or at least link me to your blogs or pass this on so I can help them in the way that I'm able to.

If you have other means to help them please contact me and I'll pass on the Info. to Jennifer. Please Help me spread this Information and reach the people that could help.

Thank you in advance. Sweeti

Wednesday, January 04, 2006

...Oh I Wish I Were An Oscar Mayer Wei-ner...

This was the hi-Lite of my day today,
The sinus surgery on hold for now pending the approval of the insurance gods,
They will pay for the Dr's and the procedure but the hospital coverage is in limbo...I know, It makes no sense what so ever but, This is where it stands till I find out more.
I've got a lot of irons in the fire (Blacksmith terms) so to speak and hopefully one of them will come to fruition for me and get it taken care of.

That is what I truly wish to be. Cause if I were a Oscar Mayer wei-ner, everyone would be in love with me...

I stopped and took pictures of this on my way home today, They were parked in the Haggen parking lot in Oregon City, The girls that were driving it were no where to be found so I didn't get my whistle damn it.

But I mainly stopped because my #1 son Jer loves this weinermobile and it brought back memories of a picture of him and the hotdog shaped transport.

I did have another encounter with this odditity, when I was 13 in the family motorhome on the way to Minnesota to see the cousins, there it was, the strangest thing I think I ever saw. It was just driving down the side walk like roads(concrete pads) in Nebraska. We kept up with it by the way of us kids urging the step father to go faster, and the kid in him came to life and for once he let go, we waved and honked like fools. But oh well, we were not the first and probably not the last!

Hot Dog shaped Instrument Panel
(I stole this one from the net)
GPS navigation SystemSeating for 6 -
in Mustard and Ketchup Colored Seats

Rearview Camera
Gull-Wing DoorMustard-splattered Walkway
Removable Bun Roof
State-of-the-Art Audio Center with Wireless Microphone System
Blue Sky Ceiling Art
Cruises on Average 500 Miles/Week
The First Wienermobile Vehicle Was Built in 1936
Has Storage Space For 11, 000 Wienerwhistle Toys
Custom-made Fiberglass Hot Dog Resting on a Lightly Toasted Bun Chevrolet W4 Series ChassisV-8,
6.0 Liter 350 Vortec 5700 Engine
Anti-Lock Brake System
32.1 Gallon Fuel Tank For Each Fill Up of High Octane Mustard (A pun)

The one that started them all...The Oscar Mayer WienerMobile is a king among Product Mobiles. The first Wienermobile was created in 1936 and the current one is 55 hot dogs long (27 ft.), 18 hot dogs wide (8 ft.) and 25 hot dogs high (11ft.).

Kids love exploring the WienerMobile inside and out and often walk away with a free Wienerwhistle after their visit. The Wienerwhistle (in it's original form) dates back to 1951 and can play the notes from the Oscar Mayer Weiner Song.
The hotdog motif is continued inside the WienerMobile with the hotdog shaped dashboards and wiener decorations.

That is what I truly wish to be. Cause if I were a Oscar Mayer wei-ner, everyone would be in love with me...
This is a hard tune to turn off once you start singing it!

Monday, January 02, 2006

2006 Rain, Ducks, Slides and More Rain

The New Year brought about cabin fever and a curiosity of the on going flooding here in the Willamette Valley area of Oregon.

I talked the Mr. Into being my chauffeur for a couple of hours, (I mean all Day)(hehe) and so we went investigating.

**This is who gets to enjoy the flooding...The ducks and Geese, Everyone brings food to feed them in exchange for the view.**

He is a natural disaster freak, Not that he wishes it to happen, but is very interested in the after affects. It lures him.

But first to the Home Depot to spend his gift card...A new drill press was the ticket of the day, Now the Mr. Was surely happy and ready to appease me.
Nice thinking huh!
I teach by example.

First to the infamous area on the Willamette river near the Hwy. 205 bridge and Oregon City, The Clackamette park, Home of the annual "River Fest" and where the Willamette River and the Clackamas River merge.
The flood of 1996 comes back to memory seeing these images only as my lil' sis says "it hasn't reached the Toities yet"...Meaning the the public restrooms, A staging ground for the officially flooding in her eyes. But in mine, It's fricken flooded! The trees in the water are part of the park under river water.

Can you see the full sized tree pushed up against the bridge, This is a common occurrence when this happens. This is where people get into trouble, the hidden debris in the river.

This area will flood second, only to be shown up by the Pudding River near Aurora, Or. And by the way it looks just as it sounds...Murky and muddy most of the year...Go figure.

This is a slide caused by all the rain just out of Oregon City on our way to the Clackamas River.
Shhhh... We were in an area that we weren't supposed to be.

But you see who is leading me astray right?

It didn't look like much till you were upon it, but then you could see how much had already been cleaned up. It still looks pretty unstable to me.

This is the Clackamas River near Estacada, Oregon It's pretty darn full too, It's very pretty up in this area lots of waterfalls especially now, But mostly just peaceful.

Now to make you a little envious...

Sorry...If it makes you feel better the fish weren't biting but the boat ride looked fun...And no it wasn't the Mr. and I out there, So we were jealous first. This was a place called Lake Harriet on the Clackamas River, We found it by chance because of a road detour, probably because of slides.

Now we did try to make it to Timothy Lake but darkness was setting in and we had no provisions in case we got stuck other than my glucose tablets (Yuck!) and a bottle of water and we were in completely unfamiliar territory. So we headed home, But stopping and taking as many pictures as I could along the way. I love being a tourist in my own little world,
Just think how good I'd be on a sunny beach somewhere.

Happy New Year Everyone!

Now where's the tanning bed I need the Sun.