Saturday, December 30, 2006

Called off.....

Well, the Groom got cold feet, decided that baby Sis was rushing things, and that while he still loves her & wants to marry her, he's not quite ready yet. I had a feeling something like this would happen. Sis has attempted to rush several of her past boyfriends into commitments that they weren't ready to make. Her prime goal in life seems to be becoming somebody's wife. Very much a Hera archetype going on in that girl. (Read Jean Shinoda Bolen's _Goddesses in Everywoman_ for more on that. It's a great book anyway.) Well, once again she rushes things, pushing far faster than her boyfriend is ready, and he backs out.

I sincerely hope they do get marriage counseling, and start now. Maybe things will wind up with them getting married in May. Maybe not, but marriage counseling is not a bad thing. Definitely helps open the lines of communication, and brings up subjects for discussion that the soon-to-be-newlyweds might not consider on their own. Or might not, on their own, consider important enough for discussion.

Kind of ironic, as well.... A few weeks ago, when he got back from "over there", She rushed him & her daughter in for "family portraits" at the local portrait center. The last 2 times she's done this, her boyfriends cut things off with her and wound up quickly making their way out of her life. She seems intent on jinxing herself by pushing hard & fast for something He isn't ready for. (No matter who the "He" is.) Well, at the point of hearing about their "Family Portraits", I commented to DH & a couple of friends how I hope this didn't jinx their relationship, seeing as how the past 2 b-friends cut loose & ran as soon as they saw the pictures.

And I really hope my Dad & sis don't blame this on me & DH. We were all over at the house for dinner last night, and DH & I were ribbing the woulda-been Groom a bit. Not bad, certainly not as much as he's probably been getting from his military friends. Dad heard a couple of Dh's comments about the "ol' ball & chain". And my grinned whisper of "enjoy your last night as a free man". But the Groom seemed to be taking it all in stride. And, as I said, our commentary was not maliciously meant, and we aren't exactly bad examples of marriage ourself. (Mom & Dad are more likely to give somebody qualms about getting married, than DH & I are.) So, I hope Dad & baby Sis don't get peeved at DH & I. Because quite simply, if our couple of comments were enough to push the Groom over the edge to calling it off, he was awfully damn close in the first place. As Dh said, if a guy TRULY wants to marry a girl, commentary like that isn't going to stop him the day before, or the day of, the wedding. He'd be one to know. ;) And isn't that what bachelor parties seem to be all about, the Groom's married & unmarried friends trying to talk him out of it, or trying to give him one last good time before Groom becomes a married man?

Ok, so I feel a bit guilty about the comment last night, but I do know that woulda-been-Groom was feeling some serious qualms before I ever uttered that comment, if he actually called the wedding off on the day of. One or two comments is not enough to get somebody who TRULY wants to be married, to actually call things off.

Anyway..... Just had to post an update.

Have a Blessed Day!

Friday, December 29, 2006

And so two become one.....

Tomorrow is the day. The day my baby sis finally ties the knot with her fiancee. And, ironically, our Middle sis is going to be officiating. Turns out no preacher, pastor, chaplain, or reverend in town would officiate in a wedding in which the bride & groom did not go through AT LEAST 2 weeks worth of marriage counseling. Sis wants this done, NOW. So, she asked our middle sis to officiate. All it meant for middle sis was a quick trip to the courthouse to fill out the necessary paperwork, and she's legally ready to officiate at our baby sis's wedding. It's going to be in the fireplace lounge at one of the nicest hotel/restaurants in town.

Dh will be at work, but DD & I will be all dolled up for the occasion. Little Sis had a hissy when she found out her sweetie was planning on appearing in a button-down polo & jeans. She dragged his ass to Old Navy for some nicer duds. So, instead he'll be appearing sans baseball cap, in khaki's and a button down semi-dressy top. Sis has evidently gotten herself a white prom dress to wear. Hopefully the tailor was able to fix it so she's not popping out the top, as it sounds like it's either spaghetti straps or strapless. Purchased the usual 2 to 3 sizes too small, I'm sure. Niece will be part of the ceremony as well, actually receiving a ring from her new Daddy and taking part in the vows.

Finally, this day has come. I gotta say, I think I'm nearly as happy as the bride herself. For somewhat similar reasons, I believe. She can't wait to be married because she'll finally have somebody to take her away from this town that she hates so much. I can't wait till she's married because she'll finally have found somebody gullible enough to take her home with them, and get her out of my hair. ;)


Mom & Middle sis have been here in town for about a week now, and it's been kinda cool seeing them. Though Mom did kinda tick me off, the other day. (For some reason I couldn't tell ya then, Mom.)

We were over and Mom & Middle sis were commenting on how long my hair's gotten (it's at it's longest point ever), and I commented that I'm going to get it cut as soon as they leave. Not a major cut. Just a couple of inches. It's too long, right now, and it's horrible to wash & condition. And I've got all sorts of split ends. But it's healthy. Something it wasn't, last time it was this long (in HS).

So, Mom sits there and starts saying that I should get it permed, and colored with the dark auburn that I used to use. I don't know.... That just isn't me any more. I've finally come to terms with being whom I was created to be. I don't need to try to change how I look, because then I'm not me. Right now, with my natural brown, long semi-straight hair.... This is who I was born to be. My blue/gray/green eyes with glasses..... This is who I was born to be. My freckles (which I have NEVER covered up)...... This is who I was born to be. I've finally come to terms with all that. I've finally come to the realization that I don't have to be a green-eyed, curly-red-head to be pretty. Heck, I'll never be truly pretty. But..... My blue/gray/green eyes, my long, straight, brown hair and my smile..... That's when I'm pretty. When I am whom I'm supposed to be. Maybe I've never been "The Pretty One". That was my baby Sis when she was little. I'll never be "The Smart One". That is my Middle Sis. But, I'm me. I'm Kati. I'm the book worm, the crocheter, the (some-day) Librarian, the Mom to DD, the Wife to DH. I'm the one who lives in Alaska. And I'm the one who gets complimented on her smile at work, by my boss, by the patrons who walk past me. I'm the one who gets complimented for her manner with unruly children. I have long, straight, brown hair, and blue/gray (green when I'm angry) eyes. I'm finally good with that.

And it kinda pissed me off when my Mom was telling me how I should change who I am. I'm no better when I have shorter, curly, auburn hair & green (contact lens) eyes. Hair color doesn't make me nicer to the patrons at work, or handle the unruly children better, or crochet better. I want to be who I was born to be. I'm tired of covering it up with hair color that isn't mine, and eye color that isn't mine (all the time). This is me. I rather like me.

And Mom, I may not be the most exciting of your daughters. I'm not getting my Ph.D. in anything, any time soon. I'm not moving away with a husband that's taking over the family business. I'm not going surfing & scuba diving & traveling the world (or, at least the country) at the drop of a hat. I'm rather boring by your standards, by M's standards, or by K's standards. And I'm sorry you have a hard time accepting that. But I actually kinda like me. I actually kinda like that my life is steady. I do have plans for travel, and an education, but for right now..... Yes, Kati still works at the library in Fairbanks. Yes, Kati will be staying in Alaska with her husband while the rest of the family moves away. I may be boring, and predictable by some standards. But I'm me. And that's ok. I'm just sorry you can't see it. That M. can't see it, and that K. can't see it.

Maybe you are all three searching, endlessly, for something that may or may not be there. And maybe, for now, I've found it. And I realize it. At least for now, this is enough. This is all I need. A steady job that I love. A man that I love. A child that I love. A home town that is comfortable & that, despite it's faults, I love. Hobbies that I love. And, ironically, while I've found something that I love in my very own back yard, I know that when I am ready, I have chances for growth. I'm not ready yet. When I am, maybe you'll write letters about how I'm doing in college, or traveling, or snorkeling in Hawaii with you. For now "Kati is still working at the Library in Fairbanks" and "Kati will be staying in Alaska with her hubby" are good. I'll leave the searching, the constant need for something new, to the rest of you.

Have a Blessed Day!

Monday, December 25, 2006

Merry Christmas to ALL!!!!

Hoping that those of you who celebrate, have a FANTASTIC Christmas. Just wanna pass around these half-empty cookie tins I've got, if anybody wants a couple. Don't much want any more cookies hanging around my house, after today. *wink*

It's snowing rather heavily right now. Thick, white, wet flakes when we ususally have a dry white powder this time of year.

Church was a bit of a disappointment, yesterday. We didn't sing any of the traditional songs, like "Come all ye Faithful", "Joy to the World" and "Away in a Manger". The church choir did, but the rest of the congretation sat there & watched. Instead we sang a couple that I've only heard 1 or two other times. It felt very impersonal. The couple of songs we DID sing were posted on a screen at the front of the Auditorium, so we couldn't tell the tune to sing. I found one of them in the hymnal that nobody ever uses, underneath the chairs, so I was able to follow along by looking at the tunes in the book.

Christmas morning was pretty good, so far. I got some new tunes from the DH, and the Keira Knightly DVD, and a little hand-sized heart-box with an agate set into the top. And a pressure-cooker/canner from the inlaws. DD got that Nintendo DS & some books. And the inlaws gave her a portable DVD player. DH got that Ron White book, and an Earnhardt Jr. hat. And the inlaws got him a George Forman grill.

We'll be heading over to my 'rents in a couple of minutes for gift exchanging there. Then back to the inlaws for Christmas supper.

Hope y'all have had a Very Merry Christmas.
Have a Blessed Day!

Friday, December 22, 2006

Christmas Cookies & Excuses

Well, I have been doing some baking, some cooking, and some mixing. Here are most of the cookies of my labours. I made a double batch of cream-cheese pecan balls last night (mexican-wedding cakes, russian tea cakes, snowballs, take your pick for name). The treats pictured are peppermint patties (green), PB fudge buttons (in blue tin), and almond shortbread (octagonal tin). Would like to get a couple loaves of Cranberry bread made before THE DAY, as well.

Got all the Christmas shopping done, except for the books for DD, which I'm heading into town to pick up in just a bit. Found out that we've gotta shell out for a GC for SIL as well. She's actually living back at the inlaws again, so she'll be there for Christmas. So gotta have a gift for her.

DD's done well in hockey. She's had 4 shut-outs, now. And some of those games were close. The last game of note was 21 shots on DD, no goals. DD's team only had 6 shots on the other team's goal, and 1 of them made it into the net. So, it wound up 1 to 0, with DD's team taking the win. It was a tight game. She's got a game tonight that my Mom & middle Sis get to go see. They've been hearing me talk for months about DD's skill as a goalie, and they get to go see for themselves tonight. I think they'll be thrilled. I know DD is thrilled to get to see her Aunt Shelli & Maki (her name for my mom).


Now to the "Excuses" comments. As I said, SIL has moved back in with the inlaws. She's had serious problems in the past with a drug addiction, and it wound her up in MAJOR trouble this time. Won't go into details (shouldn't even be writing about it, as per DH's request, but I've gotta vent, so I'll leave out most of the details), just suffice it to say that she's not a nice person. Well, now she's claiming that when she had her younger son almost 3 years ago, she had "a tumor on one of her ovaries that required them to take out her ovary when the Nephew was born", and THAT is supposedly why she's become a drug-addict & bitch. And DH and FIL and MIL are believing that shit!

PLEASE. First off. If she had cancer almost 3 years ago, and she lives in the same town, WHY is this the first she's ever said of it? Why is she not still being treated/monitored for it??? I'm totally disbelieving about this little story she's concocted.

Secondly, I DID have an ovary removed this summer when I went in for my Tubal Ligation, because of a cantelope sized cyst, and I've got pictures to prove it. I haven't become a total bitch, and I haven't become a drug addict. It didn't alter my personality. What makes DH, FIL & MIL believe that this story is the reason SIL is a bitch & a druggie?!?!?!?!

Thirdly, SIL has been a bitch & a druggie for a LONG TIME. At least 10 years now, though DH said she was "dabbling" before he & I ever met. Granted it's only in the last 5 or 6 years that she's gone hard-core lifestyle & in just the last 2 or 3 that she's started getting in trouble for it, but it's NOT caused by some fictional tumor on an ovary that she's now saying she had removed. Please. I'm not that stupid, and I can't believe that DH & FIL & MIL can sit there & listen to her stories & believe them, when I'm proof that ovarian cysts/tumors don't cause drug addictions & bitchiness.

Excuse me while I knock my head against the wall. I hate excuses, and I hate people who use sorry excuses for their unpardonable behavior. DH is all for welcoming SIL back into the family, now that they've "discovered the reason" for her behavior, and seems a bit hurt over my disbelief & discustedness. He says he understands why I'll never trust her again (horrid treatment of myself, my daughter, my husband, MIL & FIL, the nephews & everybody else around her; nasty rumor spreading about me), but he looks hurt that I'm not willing to welcome her back to my life with open arms, like she's my best friend or some-such. I'm not that gullible. Haven't been in a LONG time. And I'm not going to sit back & let her hurt me & my daughter again, though if DH wants to put himself in the line of fire.... FINE. He's an adult. He can take care of himself. I hope nobody minds if I quietly mutter "told ya so" under my breath when it happens again that she turns nasty & goes back to her drugs.


Anyway, wanted to post pictures of my christmas cooking. And vent. Thanks for "listening". *smile* Must be off to do some errands before I head to work.

Hope y'all had a Blessed Yule, and wishing EVERYBODY a MERRY CHRISTMAS & will see ya again next week, likely.

Have a Blessed Day!

Friday, December 15, 2006


Well, I no longer have any jeans that fit me.... That sucks, as DD's got an exhibition scrimmage-game tonight at the Ice Dog's game. And she's got 2 games tomorrow. And I've got nothing to wear. May actually wind up wearing nice slacks.

Back toward the end of Oct. I got home to find out that 1 of my two pairs of jeans had blown out in the back-side. Fortunately it happened as I was sitting down in my car, leaving work. I came home & ordered 2 more pair (same size, everything) from the company I bought the first 2 pair from. They were on backorder, but the company said that there should be a shipment in by Nov. 6. Nov. 6 comes & goes & still no word on my jeans. Nov. 18 I got a post-card in the mail saying that my jeans are still on back-order, thanks for being patient, the order will be in no later than Nov. 30. Nov. 29th, I got an email saying that my jeans had shipped that morning & that I would have them in 2 weeks. (The company said that they were shipping Priority Mail, USPS style, and therefore I should give them up to 2 weeks to get my jeans to me.) Wednesday made 2 weeks. Still no new jeans. I'm getting fairly peeved, and am feeling somewhat ambivilent about ever buying pants (or anything else) from this company (and it's a well-known company) again.

I've known my second pair of jeans was on borrowed time, as both of the origional pair were purchased at the same time. Well, wouldn't you know it, I went into town shopping this morning, wearing my favorite pair of jeans (the second of the 2 origional pair, the non-blown-out ones). At some point, I only hope it was as I sat down in my car upon leaving the mall, my pants blew out. And we're not talking a little hole. Ooooooooohhhhh No! Nope....

We're talking, from just below the top of the pockets, to mid way past my crotch. The kind of blow-out that is NOT easy to hide.

Got to Dad's with his birthday present & a couple of pieces of cake (purchased at the grocery bakery just before I left town) & promptly tied my sarong (carried along just in case of this occurance) around my waist. *shaking head* And, as I said, after coming home & checking the mail (sarong still securely tied around my waist) I have found that my new jeans STILL have not arrived.

Needless to say, I'm peeved. Very peeved. And not looking forward to wearing thin slacks to the hockey game tonight, as it's currently about -5 deg. F. Nope, not fun.

Well, I hope y'all get a welcome, sympathetic chuckle from my ordeal. Must admit I probably would if it was one of my online friends, posting about their bad luck for the edification of their readers.

I did find a couple of small stocking stuffers for DD, bought Dh's Ron White book, and got a "sleepy puppies" calendar for DD for Christmas. (She usually gets a Scooby calendar, the calendar store didn't have any Scooby this year.) Nearly went a little crazy when I noticed that my favorite candle shop is back with their "beanpod" candles. YUMMO! (As Rachael Ray would say.) I didn't, though. I behaved myself. *sigh* Oooooh, but that Angel Amareto candle made it VERY hard to be good! And the lemon citrus and vanilla-orange candles...... *wiping drool off the keyboard*

(Updated to say, went shopping at a LOCAL store after the game & got me a new pair of jeans to hold me until my other jeans get here. Hopefully they make it before Christmas.)

Have a Blessed Day!

Thursday, December 14, 2006

Found a bathrobe!

Just a little (really inconsequential) update.... DH went to Old Navy today on the hunt for a bathrobe for DD & he did find one. So, that wall has been scaled, now to conquer the wall of stocking stuffers.

And in other news: Horrible daughter that I am, I forgot my dad's birthday today. I feel so crummy over forgetting. And I even have it written down on one of my calendars. *sigh* Tomorrow I'll be picking up his birthday present (went to Tay's hockey game on Wed. night instead of remembering Dad's present) and a couple of cupcakes & stopping in @ Dad's with them.

Last but not least, baby sis & fiancee have decided to have a small church ceremony on Dec. 30th and she called today to let me know and inform me that DD, DH & I ARE invited. *wink*

Ok, off to make dinner.

Hope you had a Blessed Day!

Monday, December 11, 2006

Christmas Shopping....

I try not to go overboard when I do my shopping. I like finding one gift per family member that really fits them. I think I've found that for my mom & middle sis. I'd be sure about my baby sis if it wasn't for her history of being rather uppity. Dad has made it clear that he's trying to clear out the house, so please don't get him anything that isn't reusable or temporary, so he gets a GC (to buy with it what he wants). Sis's fiancee & daughter will also get GCs (fiancee because I don't know him well enough to know what he likes, really; niece for reasons previously mentioned).

For DH, I've got a couple of ideas (an Earnhardt Jr. hat, and either a new Jr. license-plate cover thingy, or the Ron White book _They Call Me Tater Salad_).

For DD, however, I've been hitting a wall. For her, I follow the rule of 4: Something she wants, something she needs, something to wear, and something to read.

The something she wants, this year, will be a Nintendo DS-something-or-other that DH bought for her.

The something she needs.... A good swift kick in the pants! (Ok, not really. I will probably wind up combining this with the something to wear.)

The Something to wear is HOPEFULLY going to be a bathrobe. This is that wall I've been hitting. I cannot seem to find a reasonably priced bathrobe sized for a pre-teen, that doesn't cost horrible amounts in S&H. Oh, I found one lovely ballerina length robe that was priced only 24.99, but they wanted 24.50 in S&H to Alaska. Another pretty, embroidered (with her name) bathrobe, but they wanted $60 dollars for it (only $8 S&H, however). I DID look at a couple of places here in town (big W. and s-e-a-r-s) and didn't see any pre-teen sized bathrobes. They have adult womens (ankle length). They have toddlers. Neither of which would fit my 4-1/2 foot tall daughter. *sigh* If anybody has any online stores they may know about (and I must hurry if I plan to have this for her by Christmas), LET ME KNOW!!!!!!! Please!!!!! I'm begging.

As for the "Something to read", well, that's simple as always. 10 minutes in my local Waldenbooks & I should be able to fill that category.

Oh, and stocking stuffers. Another brick wall. In our house DH & I provide the gifts under the tree & Santa provides the stocking stuffers. What to get a pre-teen for stocking stuffers, when there's really nothing she NEEDS??? She needed chap-stick (actually, Bonne Bell is what she ususally gets), got it at the grocery a couple of weeks ago (because one really doesn't want to have to wait till Christmas morning to get much needed chapstick). Thought about getting her the Kelly Pickler CD for her stocking. Guess what DH picked up yesterday as they were out christmas shopping. And it was already opened & listened to by the time I got home. A handful of crystals. There's an option. But she's got so stinking many crystals (and other rocks) floating around her room as it is..... That child BETTER study geology in college, of all the rocks she collects. Jewelry..... Yeah, like she needs any more! Can't seem to climb over these brick walls, this year.

I have yet to do any Christmas baking. Which I miss. I remember all the cookies & goodies Mom used to make: Pecan Tassies, Mexican Wedding Cakes, Sugar cookies, Spritz, magic cookie bars, fudge, to name just a few. I'm lucky if I can churn out 2 batches of cookies, at all, each year. I want to do more. Really I do. I just don't know where the time goes.

I've got a box of Christmas cards sitting here next to me, and ornaments for an ornament exchange I'm taking part in. And neither are quite ready to be sent out. And for my exchange friends in Canada & Australia, that means they won't get their cards &/or ornaments till after Christmas at this rate. *sigh*

Can I take the next 2 weeks off work & just get all this Christmas stuff out of the way. I enjoy Christmas, I really do, but why does it always seem like it's so stressful???? And for that matter, all the effort that goes into 1 day of celebration, and it's all over. *sigh* It's THIS kind of thing that makes me wish I was a SAHM again. Not because I enjoyed being a SAHM so fantasticly, but because it meant I had TIME. I love my job, but THIS is why I don't work a 40 hour week, even though I've been offered that extra work time. Even with only 30 hours of work a week, I still barely manage to get other things done.

Hope You Have a Blessed Day!

Saturday, December 09, 2006

Yes Virginia, there really IS....

... A North Pole! Just had to share this cool little article on MSN about my town. Finally some GOOD news about our town!

Have a Blessed Day!

Truck Pictures

So, here are some pictures of the truck, AFTER the accident, obviously. They were actually taken by DH yesterday (Friday), the day following the accident. What I can't believe is that the passenger side air-bag is STILL inflated. Incredible. What I didn't put up here was the harder-to-see dent on the passenger side, right over the rear tire.

DH said that when he actually saw the truck yesterday, in the light of day, it really shoock him up all over again, as he didn't realize exactly HOW lucky he was to walk away from that unharmed.

Just wanted to share.

Have a Blessed Day!

Thursday, December 07, 2006


I didn't get a chance to post this, this morning. Everything here was stressed & frantic, and last thing on my mind (well, not quite) was posting our newest bit of bad news.

As DD & I got up this morning & were getting her ready for school, DH calls & asked if we'd heard anything about an accident on the radio (which we always listen to for the bus report & road conditions). Nope, I hadn't. Turns out that not 1/4 mile from our house, DH was passing an intersection when a 16 year old boy with a new license decided that things were clear enough to pull out -left turn- in front of DH (he claims he didn't even see Dh coming, witnesses don't see how he could have MISSED seeing DH there) on his way to school. DH said he didn't even have time to contemplate hitting his brakes (with roads as slick as they are, slamming the brakes might have done more harm than good), much less time to actually do so. DH wasn't even up to speed, either, having just pulled out of our neighbourhood. Long story short: Nobody's hurt (dh's hand is sore where we think he "punched" the sterio face-plate upon impact), both vehicals are totaled & completely undrivable; Now or ever. The cop gave the kid a citation & told him it'd be in HIS best interest to plead guilty. And told DH that there was no way this could be construed as DH's fault by any stretch of the imagination, certainly not with 2 witnesses.

The insurance company is offering us 19,500 for the truck (which was less than 2 years old). I'm not sure what that means for a down payment on a new truck, as 19,000 is what we had left to pay on the old truck. Dad is letting Dh drive his jeep (he's got a Ram pick-up, as well) until we can get a new truck purchased. Which DH & FIL will be doing (have threatened DH's life if he goes vehical shopping without FIL's assistance).

So, mixed blessings from a horrid event. The biggest shocker is that both DH & this kid walked away from the accident without injury. At all. Much less serious injury or dead. There's nothing really left of either vehical worth trying to salvage (well, the BED of our truck is still good, as were the hockey sticks stored back there).

And I guess it's a positive that we're no longer tied to that truck, which WAS a real lemon. We're going with a different brand of truck altogether on the next one we buy.

Hope y'all had a better day than we've had. For tomorrow....

Have a Blessed Day!

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Empty Shelves & Fuel Tanks

There have been a handful of coincidences in the past few weeks, in my town, that have resulted in shortages that maybe would not have happened if some of those circumstances had not been present. It's given me a little jolt of what life could be like, and in some sense has been making me grateful for what I do have.

For example, the store shelves at my local grocery (and other groceries through town) have been somewhat empty. Esp. the meats department. Literal empty shelves there. Where other parts of the grocery may have skanty supplies, the meat section is more seriously depleated. Two big factors have resulted in this depletion, from what I can tell. The first is those storms that have been plaguing the lower 48 states of this country. Shipments have been delayed (a couple of weeks, in some cases, evidently) due to horrid weather. The other main factor of this depletion has been the return home of our military men & women from "over there". We had a huge brigade of some 3500 military folks "come home" to our Army base, in just the past couple of weeks. One of these is my baby sister's Fiancee. (YEAH!)

Together, these two circumstances have combined to result in a shortage of groceries. To put it in precise words, our fighting men have come home hungry for home cooked meals, to find the grocery stores already depleated due to delayed shipments. Not to say that I begrudge these military folks their home cooked meals. Not at all. But it has made for a couple of weeks in which I go to the grocery store with a supper in mind, only to find that I must change my plans.

It has reminded me, in some VERY small sense of something I read & saw in a HS school book. The picture was of a Russian woman standing in an empty grocery with only 2 or 3 cans of something on a shelf in front of her. The statement was along the lines that Russian folks do not tend to go shopping for what they want, but what they can get (and this is hopefully in the past, now). That their lives & meals & such revolve around what is available to them, not what they would like. Now, my experience is NOWHERE near as desperate, and I certainly don't want to imply that I have any real understanding of what a hardship this has been for the Russian nation, or for other countries where food supplies are EVEN more desperate. But maybe it has given me a small glimpse, of what has been in Russia, and what could be for our country at some point down the road. (Or even, what was for our country during the Great Depression or during WW2.)

The other shortage that has been occuring here in my community has been a shortage of fuel. A family member works for a local fuel company & has commented on a couple of occurances that have resulted in houses both running out of fuel & unable to get more fuel for their tanks in a very timely manner. We had an abnormally cold Nov. with very little snow to insulate our homes. (I heard a report on the radio yesterday that by this time of year we generally have well over 20 inches of snow, where we have had only 7 inches thus-far this year.) This means that our houses are burning more fuel than usual. The whole BP Alaskan Pipeline problem this fall & winter, as well as smaller pipeline malfunctions at local refineries, has resulted in a decreased supply of home heating fuel. Which has possibly meant that the fuel drivers were not able to fill the tanks with as much fuel as they usually might for automatic delivery customers (those customers who do not generally get a full tank at a time, but smaller deliveries periodically). Now that production is boosting again, however, people are still running short on fuel in their tanks (thanks to the cold) which means that while there is fuel to be delivered, the drivers are run off their feet (or their tires) trying to get to everybody before anybody truly runs out. My family member has commented about how many truck drivers have been working weeks straight, without a day off (which is allowed under their contract) to try to fill the demand. Some of my coworkers have commented about how they made a semi-emergency call for a fuel delivery only to be told that the truck drivers are SOOO backed up, it would be over a week before these coworkers could be gotten to. Scary, that, in a place where temps drop to -30 this time of year. Many people in my acquaintance have installed wood stoves in their homes, for reasons such as this. And not to imply that the fuel companies are not doing their job, but that they are swamped & unable to help matters.

We've been lucky, fuel wise. We have a 500 gal. tank on our house and have found that we can get through a whole year on 1 tankful of fuel. With added protection such as curtains or plastic-wrapped windows, reinsulating doors, and turning down the temp. before leaving for the day, we've been able to boost our efficiency even more. So running out of fuel is not a concern for us this year.

What an eye opener, these shortages have been. And interesting to contemplate that if 1 factor, in each situation, were different, the shortages may not be occuring. (Or, just possibly not at the rate they have been.) Definitely speaks to the need to plan ahead & be aware of all the possibilities that could come up in a year's time.

Anyway, must get heading to work.

Have a Blessed Day!