Friday, August 31, 2007

Train up a child....

... in the way s/he should go, and when s/he is old s/he will not turn from it. Prov. 22:6

As true (whether Christian or not) for parents as it is for the school, evidently. And guess what my school is openly training our children in now?????

My child is getting the training in how to be an ideal consumer in her very class room, and rather openly. *shaking head*

I volunteered this morning in the school library (more on that later), and I witnessed the Librarian talking to our children about the school's participation in the AR (Accelerated Reader) program. (I've got qualms about this program in & of itself, really.) Anyway. Her comments were along the lines of (if not word-for-word, though I will do my best to quote):

Our school is VERY big in support of the AR program. *pause for response* Do you all know what the AR program is???? *pause again* You read books at your reading level and you test on those books. Do you know WHY you test on those books???? *pause* For points. Do you know what you get to DO with those points????? *pause* You get to go shopping at the AR store!!!!!!!! Dillon, tell your class-mates some of the cool (read: cheap!) things you bought last year with YOUR AR points!!!!

*shaking head* I was completely stunned by how openly these children are being indoctrinated in the belief that our sole purpose is to work to buy "stuff". So much for working to live. Now we're living to work, and working to buy "stuff." And of course all the "stuff" these children are being primed to buy is crap. Little toys & junk is generally solicited from parents & consisting of items such as McD's un-happy-meal toys; party favor type junk; second hand knick-knacks that didn't even make the cut for the garage sale..... Invariably most of it made in our favorite foreign-provider of trash, and now known to contain indecent amounts of lead. *shaking head* I just cannot get over it!

With all the things our kids are supposed to learn in school, instead they're being taught that their only goal in life is to purchase, purchase, purchase. And they were reminded that if by the end of 5th grade, they have 1000 (that's one thousand) AR points, they get a ride in a Limo. In otherwords, work your tail off and eventually you'll have enough money to look rich & famous some day, and this is a child's version of how well that works & how many that usually works out for. (Because, of course, a great majority of the children don't make it to 1000 points, whether through honest lack of trying, or just not being as fast about it as the lucky, rare few. I think DD MAY reach 200 points by the end of THIS year. At most, 3 children made it to 1000 last year.)

(Also FYI, I'm not making DD toss all her Polly Pockets just because they contain lead, because she's not sticking them in her mouth & sucking off the paint & dyes. Though I won't go buying chinese made junk for my niece & nephews from here on out, esp. they DO still chew & suck on things that shouldn't be chewed & sucked on. And DD isn't getting any NEW Polly's or Brats.)

Anyway.... Just had to share the lesson my daughter and 22 of her class-mates learned from her librarian today. And 2 other classes of kids (a 3rd grade class & a 6th grade class). Also, our school starts the kids in the AR program in 1st grade. But, not all the schools in the district participate in the AR program, I think our school is the "pilot" school for our district.

My other qualm about the AR program is that it ranks all of the books at a certain reading level. While that CAN be a good thing, some examples of which books are at which level include:

Junie B. Jones (a modern version of the Ramona Quimby books) - approx 2.4
Magic Tree House (by Mary Pope Osborn) - ranges from 2.1 to approx. 3.3

Betsy-Tacy by Maud Hart Lovelace (a classic) - 4.9
Wait Till Helen Comes by Mary Downing Hahn - 4.6
Little House in the Big Woods - 4.2
American Girl all consistently rank at around 4.5
A Tale of Jemima Puddleduck by Beatrix Potter - 4.5
Holes by Lois Sachar - 4.6

Ramona & Her Mother - 5.3
The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe - 5.7
The True Confessions of Charlotte Doyle by Avi - 5.3
Stuart Little - 5.4
Matilda by Roald Dahl - 5.7
My Side of the Mountain - 5.9
A Wrinkle in Time - 5.5
Harry Potter & the Sorcerer's Stone - 5.1
Call It Courage - 5.0

The Witch of Blackbird Pond by Elizabeth George Speare - 6.3
Sounder by William Armstrong - 6.9
Tuck Everlasting by Natalie Babbit - 6.3
Charlie & the Chocolate Factory by Roald Dahl - 6.7
Island of the Blue Dolphins - 6.4
The Indian in the Cupboard - 6.1
The Rescuers - 6.7
The Cay by Theodore Taylor - 6.7

Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry by Mildred Taylor - 7.1
Heidi - 8.1
All Quiet on the Western Front - 8.0
My Friend Flicka - 8.2
Little Women - 8.5
Pride & Predjudice - 11
Peter Pan - 7.7
Wizard of Oz. - 8.1
Jane Eyre - 10.0
Wuthering Heights - 9.9
The Good Earth by Pearl. S. Buck - 8.2
A Little Princess by Frances Hodgson Burnett - 7.6
The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnet - 7.5
My Antonia by Willa Cather - 8.0
Last of the Mohicans - 11.0
Jurassic Park - 8.9
The Little Prince by Antoine DeSaint -Ex - 8.2
David Copperfield - 9.8
Great Expectations - 9.5
A Tale of Two Cities - 9.2
Crime & Punishment - 11.0
Silas Marner - 10.0
The Great Gatsby - 9.1
The Wind in the Willows - 8.3
The Scarlet Letter - 12.0
Rifles for Watie by Harold Keith - 7.3
Ursula K. LeGuine's EarthSea series - 7.0
To Kill A Mockingbird - 7.4
White Fang - 7.7
Moby Dick - 12.0
Anne of Green Gables - 7.6
Jacob Have I Loved - 8.3
Bridge to Terabithia - 7.0
Hatchet by Gary Paulson - 6.1
Merry Adventures of Robin Hood - 8.2
Treasure Island - 8.0
Gulliver's Travels - 10.0
Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy - 11.0
The Hobbit - 7.2
The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn - 8.0
Swiss Family Robinson - 8.9

And this is just a taste of the enourmous number of books on the AR reading lists. What shocks me, though, is how MOST of the classics are at levels too high for your average school kid to read. I recall books like Heidi, and The Little Princess, and Gulliver's Travels being considered children's books when I was a kid. And that wasn't very long ago! Now they're all considered reading material for middle-schoolers at best. The reading levels pretty consistently correspond with the grade-level. My daughter is now reading at about a 4 point level, and is "allowed by her teacher" to check out books UP TO a 5 point level. I had to laugh, just now, finding out that the Beatrix Potter books all come in at about 4.5. I cannot IMAGINE a 4th grader wanting to read Beatrix Potter because they are in his or her reading level. Please!!!! What ever happened to CHALLENGING our children????

Not only are the books RANKED at levels too high for our children to want to consider (and the school library labels them with stickers so the kids and their teachers know what level of books they're checking out), but they're being instructed that they're NOT ALLOWED to check out a book at a higher level. So, my daughter isn't allowed to check out Heidi because it's an 8.1! *shaking head* I just imagine the number of books I would have been held back from reading at that age, if my school had followed such a ridiculous program. I was diving into such books as The Little Princess, Bridge to Terabithia and Anne of Green Gables by the time I was in 5th grade. I read Jane Eyre for fun in 8th grade. (Of course, I was then required to re-read it SLOWLY in 9th Grade Honor's English, but most of my class-mates never made it around to Jane Eyre or Anna Karenina, and only read Great Expectations as seniors.

It annoys me. The whole concept for this program. Initially I thought it was great to be able to recommend to a child that this book may be at a good level for them. Now I find it stiffling. It makes me very glad that I have an enourmous supply of books in my home for my daughter to read. She'll be allowed to read Heidi and My Side of the Mountain and The Hobbit as soon as she feels ready, not based on when some abstract list dictates. And I've made it a habit to grab these books from the library's book-sale bin (or purchase them first-hand) whenever I have the choice. I'm going to make a concerted effort now, knowing what I do about our school's policy of allowing books to be read. *shaking head*


Other than that, my time as a volunteer (3 hours, 10 minutes) went reasonably well. I made some rookie library mistakes by not paying as close attention to the computer screen as I should have when checking in, and didn't realize that some books were not properly "zapped". I did some shelf-reading & tidying, and a LOT of checking in & a good bit of checking out. The librarian is a nice lady, all in all. It's simply the aspect of teaching our children to be "good little consumers" that bugs me. I just cannot stomach how they're being (literally) sold this idea that the only imporance of having a job (at this point school) is to boost their buying power. *sigh*

I wish I could just be blind & let all this roll right off my back without it raising my hackles. But I can't. I do believe that I was born a little too smart for this world I find myself in, in which everybody believes that everything is A-OK and all I've got to do is just keep my head down & do my job and not worry my pretty little head over things that don't have anything to do with my silly-little-self anyway. I just can't bring myself to be a blindly consuming "soccer-mom". Just can't do it. *shrug* Ah well. On the other hand, I do get the joy of looking at the world around me & finding wonder & joy in all the beauty & great things I see (see posts about rainbows), as long as I'm willing to take the bad with the good.


And speaking of good. It's now 10:30 pm and the sky is dark, and off in the distance to the East (where I photographed those rainbows the other day) I've got a spectacular view of this thunderstorm that's billowing. It's dark, so each flash of lightning is incredible & brilliantly lights up the sky for just a split-second. It's wierd!!!! Thunderstorms at the beginning of Sept. in Alaska!!!!! Too trippy!

Oh, and the kiddo's spending the night at her best friend's house & DH is out hunting. WHOO HOO!!!!! Bed to myself tonight & the farmer's market by myself tomorrow morning!

Gotta go find something to eat & watch the storm come my way!

Have a Blessed Labor Day Weekend!

Thursday, August 30, 2007

I've got him TRAINED!

Allow me to set the scene.

Last night. We're just finishing dinner. DD has already gone to start brushing her teeth. DH is standing by the sink finishing his soda. I'm sitting at my spot at the table finishing my soda. We're chatting.

Rather suddenly, I belched. (Not really that unusual as I was drinking soda.)

DH says "Excuse Me" (not "Excuse YOU", but "Excuse Me") then takes another guzzle of his soda, completely oblivious to the fact that he hadn't actually belched.

I look at him and say "EXCUSE ME!" At which point he realized what he'd assumed & what he'd said. LOL

Still sounds somewhat comical, but dang was it funny last night. At that point I thought, well... yeah, I've got him trained and I wasn't even trying on this aspect! LOL

Just had to share.


FWIW, the kiddo seems to be coming down with a cold. *sigh* I was hoping to prevent colds this year with regular, hefty usage of vit-c (losenges when necessary, in food form when possible), of Apple Cider Vinegar (also refered to as ACV) & honey "tea", and enough sleep. Seems that in DD's case, I may not be successful. Yesterday afternoon she complained of feeling a bit yucky, and this morning she was sounding kind of stuffy. Along with her breakfast (a banana-berry smoothie and a piece of corn-bread, buttered), I gave her a mug of my ACV tea, a dose of Pediacare long-lasting cold med, and 3 vit-c losenges (one for now, 2 for later in the day). Sent her to school with a travel pkg of kleenex as well (since she won't carry hankies). I hope I can head it off. I'll make her more ACV tea tonight, and I'm going to make my chili (dinner tonight) extra garlicy. That combo of lots of C, ACV tea, and garlic has stood me well in the last couple of years. I've only had 1 cold in the last 2 years.

She does seem to be enjoying school, though. Other than one little problem last week with her least favorite class-mate, everything else seems to be going well. She's walked to school every day except the first. And I'll be taking her tomorrow (as I'm going in to volunteer in the library in the morning, for my first time). She's also been swimming at the local pool 5 times in the last 2 weeks. She may go swimming one more time this week, if she's lucky.

DD's hockey season starts Sept. 11th with her first practice. We're tossing around ideas & possibilities for getting DD to & from practice on days DH has to work late (or when it's up at the U. at 5:30 pm). She's looking forward to it, though it appears she'll be one of 3 goalies on her team this year. They're going to have her play the position at the first few games, but in practice she'll be splitting goal-tending time with 2 other girls, at least initially. One of the girls is new to our team this year (though DD played on the same team as her 3 years ago) and played goalie exclusively last year. The other girl is one of DD's teammates from last year who wants to give goalie a try this year but may not like it (she's rather..... "retiring"). We'll see how it goes.

Anyway, primarily an update for Mom & Sis on their granddaughter/niece, but I know my friends will generally be as interested in my kiddo as I am in theirs.

Have a Blessed Day!

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

A couple more pics....

No, I didn't stay up for the Eclipse last night. Kinda wanted to, but considering I slept like crud anyway... It's a good thing I didn't. But, I did want to post a picture of Her at Her fullest. Ok, one day away from her fullest, but still.... One of these days I'll try to get a good pic of Her just as she rises. Maybe if it's clear tonight I'll do it then. On a clear, cool Autumn night just as the moon rises she's this bright, brilliant yellow, and huge! That's one of the things I've loved about being out hunting, in the past. When you're out, away from any city lights or buildings, coming up on a ridge first thing in the morning as the moon is setting & the sun hasn't quite risen yet. She's this huge ball of orange or yellow hanging just above the horizon. It feels so primitive (even if one IS riding a 4-wheeler instead of walking or riding a horse). And the Alaskan land-scape, once out of the "civilized areas" is the best place to get that "I've stepped back in time" feeling.

This pic was taken from under my willow tree at the corner of my front yard. Not while out hunting. LOL

The first time I went with DH & DD to Tangles Lakes for a fishing trip, I was struck by the feeling that barring the car & the seemingly endless strip of black-top, I very nearly expected to see a herd of Mammoth or Mastadon off in the distance against the backdrop of some foothills we were passing. And, as we were the only vehical on that strip of road, at that time, passing that view, at 11:30 at night...... Alaska certainly can be a beautiful place. Wildly dangerous & awful barren, but beautiful. (Incidently, what I didn't realize till after I mentioned that feeling to DH was the tidbit that the area we were driving through at that point is where a great deal of the dinosaur bone-digs are done. It's quite a good spot for finding prehistoric remains & fossils.)


I don't know if I mentioned last week but once again DD doesn't fit into any of the "girl's" jeans to be found in the stores. They're all cut for long legs & skinny bellies, and DD doesn't have either. So once again we wound up buying her a couple of pairs of boy's husky jeans, which fit her perfectly. Unfortunately, those boys jeans just aren't "cool" the way girl's jeans are, though DD now realizes how much more comfortable they are. Anyway, in the past I've fabric-glued patches to her pants & shorts, I've puffy-painted them, and I've tried (but didn't succeed) ribbon embroidery on them. I decided to go with something different this year. The patches weren't a success as they start coming loose in the wash & the glue left stains on the fabric. And the puffy-paint was a little too "childish" for a 4th-grader. So, Ok. I saw this cute idea for a charm-bracelet that hooked onto the handles of a purse & drapped across the front. It immediately struck me that it may be a good idea for a faux chain-belt for DD's jeans.

On Saturday I found myself at Sentry Hardware picking up some fine chain, and at Ben Franklin's picking up beads. With DD's express interested in all things Native American, I decided to go with a turqoise & bone look. (Unfortunately the only turquoise colored beads I could find were seed beads -too small!- or pony beads -cheap!. I went with the pony beads.) This is what it looks like completed. However, Sunday Night as I was making this, DD refused to put on her jeans for me as I was measuring out the chain before cutting it to length, so I just held it up against her belly & did my best with predicting where the belt-loops would be. BAD MOVE! When DD asked me to help her attach it to her jeans yesterday morning, it wouldn't fit. The first belt-loops were a lot more closely spaced than I thought, and the chain hangs in a U shape when hooked ot those loops. The second set of belt-loops is just far enough apart that the chain is about an inch too short. *sigh & shaking head* Go figure.

So now I'll have to use more chain (I did buy a long enough piece in the first place that I've got enough left to do try it again), measured properly, and re-attach all the charms. *sigh* It's not a big deal, bit of a pain in the neck. I kept dropping the chain & charm as I was in the process of closing the jump-rings & it would fall apart & I'd have to pick it up, turn the chain so it hung properly & try again. I needed a second set of hands. LOL

So, a bit of a crafty pic, as promised the other day.

Other than that....

Have a Blessed Day!

Monday, August 27, 2007

Joys & Trials Meme

So, I got tagged by Turtleheart @ with the Joys & Trials meme.

Here are the rules

  1. You have to use your own belief system for the meme. No fair using someone else’s to make a joke or satire. Being humorous about your own religion is encouraged!
  2. You have to have at least one joy and one trial. More are encouraged. And no, they don’t have to be equal in length, but please be honest.
  3. You have to tag at least one other person. More are appreciated!
  4. Please post these rules!


  1. women are celebrated for their beautiful, strong energy & bodies.
  2. freedom to accept or refuse beliefs without an all-or-nothing attitude
  3. encouragement to actually see the beauty around you & to celebrate it
  4. focus on the turning of the year from one season to the next
  5. the yummy food accompanying the honoring of the different stops along the wheel of the year.
  6. a diety that feels close & personal & always happy to stop & talk to me


  1. lack of guidance when I'm needing a mentor
  2. the lack of support from F&F (or the outright expressions of either discust or belief that it's "just a phase")
  3. Everybody & their cousin feeling the need to assume arrogant, hysterical names for themselves a la Lady Sunshine Butterfly or Lord Midnight Raven
  4. the assumption that because I believe in the divinity of nature & see the diety in all, that of COURSE I'm vegan. *shaking head* Pagans eat meat (and hunt) too!
  5. Forgetting what day the next Sabbat falls on until THAT DAY, then hunting frantically for something special to cook that night's dinner in honor of the changing of the year.
  6. Having our "holy days" fall mid week when I'm LEAST likely to want to do anything special in honor of the day & in recognition of that event.

Well, crud.... Whom to tag. I guess I'll tag my Mom and middle sis and Em.

Have a Blessed Day!

Sunday, August 26, 2007

And another.....

This makes 5 rainbows in 4 days. This time only a half-rainbow over Dana & Cliff's house.
Tori, I think you're right, and you said just what I suspect. That it's not that people don't see more than 15 rainbows in their lifetime, they just don't SEE the rainbows. They're not taking the chance to admire the beauty in nature as it presents itself.
Anyway, just had to share!!!
Have a Blessed Monday!

Saturday, August 25, 2007

Why are there so many....

Songs about Rainbows, what's on the other side....... Rainbows maybe visions & only illusions, but I've seen a LOT more than 15 in my 28 years!

These are pics of an almost completely full rainbow taken from right inside my front door not 5 minutes ago. In the last hour we've had a little thunderstorm blow in over us, and out of nowhere (it seems) the rain starts & all the sudden here is this rainbow starting over one neighbour's house & ending over the other neighbour's. I just had to share them.

I'd heard a trivia clip on the radio last week stating that some poll indicated that the average person reports seeing only 15 rainbows in their LIFETIME! *shaking head* Unbelievable. I've seen 4 in the last 3 days. On Thursday I saw a short (about 3" long) "piece" of a rainbow that was unbelievably brilliant & vivid, just as I was leaving work. Yesterday I saw 2 on the drive home, one that was very bright & vivid & almost complete & on the outside of IT was a second that was a mere shadow of the first, but definitely there. And today, this.

I've now seen at least 10 this year (4 in the last 3 days, at least 6 more prior to that), I figure that if I've seen only 6 or 7 a year, that in the last 27 (I'm going to assume that I didn't "see" any rainbows in my first year of life) years I've seen almost 200 rainbows by now.

That cloud-burst is almost over already and the skies above us are blue again. But I just had to share.

May you see many, many more rainbows in your life!

Flight of the Conchords Ep 3 Hiphopopotamus vs. Rhymenoceros

I found this last night on another blog I read and just had to share it hear. Thought it was hilarious, and knew my sis would enjoy, and imagine that a great many of my friends might as well.


Pics, as promised....

As promised, here are some pictures of the progress we've made on our back & side yard this summer. Of course only Mom & my sis will know what it looked like previously, but still....

This first picture is from the front-side of the house, taken looking toward the back. This is where the dog-kennel stood previously and I am standing just a couple of feet up from where my car was parked in that pic I posted a couple of days ago. That's DD's bedroom window with an abysmally poor view. Just the neighbour's fence-line.

This next picture is taken from just behind the dog-house seen in the previous photo looking toward the central part of the back yard. DH's car-port will be parked there to the left of the car-port containing my car. On the right of the pic you can see the corner of the dog-kennel, and behind that is the shed.

Just a short couple of weeks ago this was waist-high in weeds with only the shed out there.

Now for the third pic... All I've done is turned to get a better view of the dog-kennel (and the dogs, who wouldn't allow me to leave them inside long enough to take these pics, and so spent a few minutes wondering what the heck I was doing). That dog-house outside the kennel will eventually be moved INSIDE the kennel, but for now it contains straw purchased last year that's going to wind up on my flower-beds protecting them from the snow. In the mean-time, DH hasn't moved the doghouse into the kennel because we don't want the dogs sleeping on that old straw. The one corner of the kennel has been screened off to provide late-afternoon shade. Otherwise the kennel gets the full-blast of the afternoon sun with no relief. Of course, that hasn't stopped Jenny & Puck from digging a hole just to the right of the dog-house that's already inside the kennel. Puck would rather sleep in a hole in the dirt than in his dog-house. *shaking head* Doofy mutt!

Next comes a pic facing the other side of the kennel, with a good view of the deck, from just behind my lilac bush. (Some other type of weedy bush growing up with my lilac, but I think I will get out there & cut it out before it kills off my lilac.) Of course, the lonely chair & grill out there. Trying to decide what I want to hang on that back wall. I'll find some garden decoration of some sort to hang out there, you can be sure of that. Of course, that's my kitchen window looking out to the back-yard. Not really visible, but there none-the-less is the chive plant growing just to the back of the grill, at that corner of the house. And further down are my rhubarb, and at the front of that side of the house is my pea-patch.

There's not 3 feet between the edge of the deck & the dog-kennel. Just enough to keep the pipes for the fuel-tank free so that the delivery person won't have to enter the dog kennel to fill our tank.

Last but not least, I'm standing in the neighbour's drive for this picture. Just the side of the shed & my lilac. Eventually just here to the fore-front of the picture I'll have a clothes-line tree. One of those round types. It'll save space while giving me the most line. I'd like to get it installed this autumn to be ready to use as soon as the ground thaws (and stops being muddy) next spring. I know it's not going to get used this autumn, no matter what I do.

That small row of sapplings just behind the lilac is the property line between my yard & my neighbour's back yard. The shed sits right on the edge of the property line as well, as does the car-port.

Ok, well that gives y'all some idea of what my back yard looks like. And how tiny it is. And how much fuller it's going to be in a couple of weeks. *grin* Unfortunately no room for a garden. Though.... I may see about putting a little terraced bed just to the side of the shed there. It faces south, and except for the shade of the lilac, gets good sun during most of the day.


I spent the morning (after waking up about 9:15) running to pay the phone bill, then on to the farmer's market where I purchased 2 jars of home-made jam (one blueberry, one red-rhubarb) and 4 pieces of cake (2 quarters of almond cake, 1 quarter each cherry & apple). There's this local woman who's origionally from the Czech Republic who makes this FANTASTIC almond cake. That's my favorite flavor, anyway. It's just this thin dense cake with a layer of home-ground almond paste & studded with almonds. She also has the previously mentioned apple & cherry flavors, as well as blueberry, very berry (strawberry, raspberry, blueberry & blackberry), strawberry-rhubarb, chocolate, walnut, and one other that I can't seem to recall right off the bat. Anyway, when I got to the farmer's market little after 11 this morning (it opens at 9 am on Saturdays & goes till about 4 pm) she had a line 10 people long, and moving steadily. She makes some lovely breads, incredible cannoli (which I didn't buy, as I was getting cake) with honey or lemon flavored filling, garlic rolls that smell divine, coconut macaroons, various quick-breads, and so many other delicous things that I can't remember them all. But, I primarily buy the cake. *grin* I only spend $24 altogether on the cake & the jams. Not bad! Of course I could have spent SOOOOO much more, but I restrained myself. I was kind of hoping to find some swiss chard as well, but didn't see anybody selling any. *sigh*

After the farmer's market I head a bit further up the road to Gulliver's Books. It's the only used bookstore in town, and it's on the far-side of town for me, so I rarely get there. But ooooh they've got such incredible books. The upstairs is shared between the used books & the Second Story Cafe (which, I hear, has lovely food). I didn't find anything of any real delight to me today, upstairs. I was looking for any of the American Girl Craft or cooking books. Esp. Josephina or Kirsten. I also love to browse the regular craft section for interesting crochet books. I found a book (a good 200 pages long) of victorian patterns, published in the 70's, last time I was there. But as I said, nothing upstairs that caught my attention today. Downstairs I found the Stitch&Bitch Happy Hookers book, and the Harry Potter-themed "Charmed Knits" book. Both of which I would love to own, but didn't feel like spending that much money today. Some other day. *wink*

Stopped in to see Dad on my way out of town & visited with him for a bit. Then headed to the craft store to pick up supplies for a craft project to dress up DD's jeans. Hopefully tomorrow I'll have some creative pics to post. Then home.

For now I've got to go shred the last of the zucchini, do some dishes and get a frozen chicken popped into a sink full of cold water to thaw in time to roast it for dinner tonight. Oh, and make myself a sandwich for a late lunch so I can enjoy a piece of that almond cake for dessert. *wink*

Have a Blessed Day.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

The Generosity of Friends....

So, look what some of my coworker's & friends brought in for me yesterday. That biggest yellow squash is bigger than the upper half of my arm. LOL This is just a bit of what my coworkers/friends have been kind enough to gift me with this year. What you don't see is all the sugar-snaps & carrots & greens & beets that G. gave me earlier this year. Or the lettuce greens that P. gave me. Such lovely friends/coworkers I have. I had already shred one smaller zuke by the time I thought to take this pic, and had eatten one a couple of days ago. One more of the green zukes was shredded after I took the pic, and the one almost hidden under the carrots was sauteed up for dinner. Looking forward to lots & lots of yummy baking with the shredded zucchini that I'm going to be freezing over the next couple of days.

DD had a good first couple of days at school. The first day, she brought home spelling words & a small project due on Friday. Of course the spelling words were the 10 or 12 that she's had over & over & over again over the last few years. The words she learned in 1st grade: am, be, can, do, and so on. The second grade words include: who, was, they, were, come, are, etc.... And third grade included friend, people, does, right, write, when, where, want, and so on. The kids get this list at the first of every year & it's refered to as the "No Excuses" list. In other words, after reviewing these words year after year, they've got no excuses for NOT getting them right. LOL

The project consisted of a paper bag & the instructions to bring in 5 to 7 things that help illustrate who DD is. Of course she's got pics of the dogs and hockey & soccer pics. LOL As I said, her presentation day is Friday. It doesn't sound like she's had any homework other than that this week, so far.

She likes her teacher, and she likes being in class with 3 of her best friends (though she doesn't sit near them). What she doesn't like is that due to alphabetical order, she's required (at this point) to sit next to a certain little boy who's well known for being disruptive & rude, and likes picking on her & distracting her. She's had to sit next to him or his twin in each of the last 3 years of school. The teachers know about these kids already. DD asked Mr. O'R. if he could seat her next to somebody else because of the past experiences she's had with this little boy, and he asked her to give things a chance for now, but let him know if this little boy starts causing trouble and he'll straighten things out. I hope so.

I felt bad for one poor kid who came through my line at work the other day. This was Monday & I was all grins at how spiffy all the kids looked, coming in wearing their new duds with their hair nicely brushed. I love that look at the beginning of the year! Anyway, this little boy comes through with 3 or 4 books on plants and bursts out with the tidbit that he'd been assigned a report or something on plants already. *shaking head* The first day of school & this poor kid has an assigment to write! I had to ask what grade he was in, as he looked about the same age as DD, or a little younger. Turned out he was going into third grade. A year younger than DD. *shaking head* Rediculous!!! Of course it made me nervous to find out what DD brought home. I was very relieved by the work she brought home on the first day. Very managable. Not that I don't expect DD to get hammered this year (as compared to the rest), but on the first day.... *shaking head* I just don't think any of us are quite ready for that, so quickly out of the starting gate.

Thanks for all the lovely comments in support of DD the last couple of days.


It's looking rather gray & drear this morning. Of course it's looked like that the previous two days, but the skies cleared, and the temps warmed up, and we wound up having a beautifully sunny & crisply-warm day both Monday & Tuesday. Maybe today will be such as well. Then again, we could use some rain. It's been several days since our last rain. Last Wednesday, to be precise.

Well, that's it for this morning.
Have a Blessed Day!

Monday, August 20, 2007

First-Day-of-4th-Grade Jitters...

So, here's my big 4th grader. My almost-10-year-old. She was very nervous this morning. Said she slept horridly last night, she was so nervous. I kept reminding her this morning that 3 of her best friends (2 of which are close neighbours) are in the same class as she is. That didn't seem to help. But, the other kids all either walked to school this morning, or got a ride from their parents. So, DD let me stand out at the bus-stop with her, and would periodically turn to me for a quick cuddle, before stepping away again. LOL It's so funny how she can be SOOOOO grown up one minute, and need a cuddle from Mama the next. *wink*

This is one of the tops that required the wearing of a cami or bra underneath. I don't know if you can see, but there's a seem right across the bodice that was terribly itchy when DD was trying it on without extra coverage. *smile* It's amazing how quickly they grow. *shaking head*

The dogs, of course, were in the house howling out the window as they saw DD & I standing at the stop (which is right at the edge of our drive, under that street-light), waiting for the bus. They just couldn't understand why they couldn't come out & play with us. *wink*


Hopefully next week I'll get to post a few pics of our back-yard. It's filling up quickly, now. And it's amazing how much bigger, and yet how much smaller, it looks with all these improvements. LOL DH & FIL DID get one of the canopy-car-ports (the one for my car) up yesterday. They're planning on doing the other one next weekend, hopefully.

The dog's kennel is also now in the back-yard, just off the side of the deck. The dogs are already used to going out the back again to go do their business, though they don't look certain they understand why it's got to be done IN the kennel, instead of wherever they desire. And we're keeping the kennel well tidied now that they've got such little room for such necessary business. LOL

It's funny, though, DH almost cringes when the dogs walk across the deck. He was grumping over the fact that they've got to traverse the deck to get to their kennel, and kept grumbling that if their claws scratch up the deck, he's going to have them de-clawed. *snickering* Silly, silly man. Does he really think that this deck won't get beat up & battered in it's time???? Please. It's not just for looks, it's to use. And that includes the dogs!

We still haven't had a barbeque out there yet. I was hoping to have a barbeque with all our local friends to "christen" the deck, but that hasn't happened yet, and it may not at this rate. The skies are somewhat over-cast today, with periodic sprinkles forecast. The temp's dropping quickly again. It's not supposed to get above 60 today, after 4 days of temps that were predicted in the 80's and up to 90 deg. F. That was incredibly warm for this time of year in central Alaska. But, now we're getting back to our usual autumn (yes, dear friends, this is our Autumn) temperatures.

I'd still like to have that barbeque, but instead of summer type foods, maybe we can do something a little more "white-trash Martha Stuart" and do sausages, sauerkraut, baked potatoes, apples and a vat of cider on the stove-top. Kind of a "leaf-raking" party, without all the leaf-raking. LOL And without the bon-fire, of course, since we just don't have room on our postage-stamp-sized yard. *shrug* We'll see. Anyway, hopefully pictures of the completed back yard next week.

Ok. I do believe that's all for today.

Have a Blessed Day!

Sunday, August 19, 2007

Busy with back to school.....

So, school starts again tomorrow morning at 9 am (well, that's what time DD's school starts, anyway). That means I've got to be up at 7:45 am, and have DD up by 8 am. The bus arrives at approx. 8:40.

Thursday night we went to the meet&greet at the school to find out who her teacher will be. She's got a male teacher this year (she's never had a male teacher, it may be interesting to see how she interacts).... Mr. O'R. And he's got a TA in helping him as well. As well as 23 kids, thus far, in the class. That's likely to go up by at least 2, probably 3 or 4 as the year progresses. There are three 4th-grade class-rooms.

However, the combined 3rd/4th class plan was dropped this year, so DD will be in a class with only 4th graders. Which means, if we must pull her back because of academics, it will be noticable right away to her friends & class-mates. I hope it's not something that has to be done. At the meet&greet, I told the teacher that this was the origional plan, to have her in that combined class & see where her skills were at, and to pull her back into 3rd as inconspicuously as possible, if needs be. *sigh* Well, I hope she been able to keep her skill levels where they should be over the summer, and hasn't dropped back. We'll see, in a couple of weeks, when things settle down & the first testings are done.

We went school shopping today. DD needed some new clothes & a new bag. The FIL gave DH a $100 yesterday to buy DD some clothes with. Said the MIL spends so much on the nephews that he felt like chipping in a bit on DD's behalf. She was less-than-pleased when I told her that we'd be finding her a couple of bras today as well. Not real bras. Not even the training bras Mom bought me when I was DD's age. These are more elastic-bottomed half-cami's. Not even any hooks to figure out. Just pull-over type. But, a couple of DD's tops have seams right at the level that would make them impossibly uncomfortable to wear over developing breasts. She was embarassed the entire time, and kept telling me how mean I was to insist on buying them for her. We only got two at this point, a nude color, and a white. And she's not to the point yet of needing them under all of her tops, so that should do for a while. She finally admitted, as we were heading to the check-out, that her best friend has been wearing REAL bras (the kind with cups & underwires) for 2 years now, even though she's not any more developed than DD is. *shaking head* Rediculous, to put girls in constricting clothing like that at such a young age. I'm only insisting on this because I know DD is going to get to a point where she really DOES need support, esp. considering how physically active she is. She can get accustomed to wearing something NOW, and it'll make some of those cute tops a little more comfortable for her in the mean-time. Maybe she won't have a hard a time wearing the real-thing when the time comes, the way I always have. *wry chuckle*


DH and FIL fixed my brake-lights so they work. They couldn't figure out how to get the origional lights to work on the origional wiring, but found a way to wire it so that the central tail-light brightens when I hit my brakes (if my tail-lights are on in the first place, or just light up if my lights are off otherwise). So, I've got brakelights again, thank goodness!

Unfortunately I DID miss the class. It was only 1 evening, and it was a good ways outside of Fairbanks, in the other direction from my home. Both my coworkers that were also going to go to the class live in THAT side of town, I live on this side. It sounds like it was a good time, though. Hopefully some other time I can attend a similar class. And, the option to drive DH's truck up, while he had my car, wasn't really an option. Unfortunately at 5 feet-nothing tall, I have a hard time driving more than the smallest of vehicals. Literally, the two times I've ever attempted to drive DH's truck (a full-size Toyota Tundra), I had to pull my seat so far forward that I was hugging the steering wheel just so my toes would touch the pedals. There was NO WAY I was going to try driving the big hulking thing out to Ester & back just for a silly little class. *chuckle*

I've been looking online at vehicals, and so far I'm still really liking the "look" of the Buick LeCrosse CXL. That's the mid-priced version of the vehical. And the one that's almost identical to the car I have now, but 16 years newer, with a CD player standard (instead of the AM/FM radio, no tape-deck that came in MY car). LOL I think the quoted price on the buick site is $25,500, give or take a couple hundred. And it gets 22/30 miles to the gallon (city/highway). I like that! My car currently gets 26 miles to the gallon, when I'm being a conservative driver, and in the summer. In the winter it drops to about 23 miles to the gallon. Hopefully after the new year, those milage rates are going to increase. I'd REALLY like to see that.

DH thinks that with major babying, my car may make it another winter, but on the other hand he's not sure. It's 16 years old. That's a good long life for a vehical with all it's origional major "parts". We'll see what happens.


Other than that..... Haven't done any baking this weekend. *sigh* I need to eat up what's stashed in my freezer before I do any more, but I miss it. LOL

DH & FIL finished the deck last week. This weekend they moved the kennel to the back of the house & now they're bringing over at least one of the two canopy-garages. FIL bought some new ones & is giving us his "old". That'll give us shelter for our vehicals for the winter at least, if not a heated place to store them. Hopefully in a year or two we'll be able to afford to build a real garage for them. Then again, it depends on if we have to buy me a new car. It's kind of going to be "car, garage, car, garage". *holding hands like scales* Depends on what comes first, I suppose.

Ok. That's my little update. Hope y'all are having a good weekend!

And a Blessed Day, tomorrow.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Gosh, Golly, Dangit!!!!

Well, those brake-lights still aren't working on my car. So the DH is going to take it again this evening when I get home & trace down which wires are bad. Because it comes down to the wiring. He doesn't want to spend the $$ on taking it in to a shop for the same job for 2 reasons.

Reason 1) we don't have that kind of cash to be handing to anybody right now.
Reason 2) he doesn't think my car's going to survive the winter anyway, so he doesn't want to throw a whole lot of money at it when we're probably going to need to replace it when we get our divident checks in Oct. anyway.

So, now I'm rather freaking bummed about the whole danged thing. Also for a couple of reasons.

The more immediate reason being that I'm now not going to be able to go to a fabric-dying class with a couple of coworker/friends tonight. A local organic farm is having a class on dying fabric with local plants. I've been hoping for this for months. BUT, without brake-lights, and given the fact that the class ends at 9 (probably later, once everybody brings themselves to leave), and I don't know where the farm is & don't want to be driving around in the dark with-out brake-lights..... *sigh* And DH REALLY needs tonight to get started tracing those wires (he spent till 9 pm last night checking the fuses & reading the chilton's book to see what else it might be). *sigh* So, no fabric-dying class for me. I feel so bad telling G. that I won't be able to go, also. Because P. might be bowing out as well (has this tonight, as well as an invite to something else she's really amped about), so G. may be going by herself, instead of with her two Pagan-y coworkers like she'd been hoping. So, I'll give G. some $$ to pay for the scarves, and unfortunately bow out of the class this time. I hate to do it. I really do. But I also need to be able to drive safely.

Reason two, for being bummed about my car...... It gets fantastic gas milage (for it's age, I get 24 to 26 miles to the gallon) and the emissions are lower than modern brand-new vehicals right out of the factory. Literally, the last time my car had an IM, the tech was in shock over how low the emissions are on a running vehical, much less a vehical that old. He said that he never even sees emissions that low on NEW vehicals.

My car is my "old faithful" as one of my coworkers put it the other day. She may have issues, but she's a good old thing. And I know that no new car (or a new "slightly used" car) is going to have as good of gas milage & fantastic emissions the way my "Old faithful" does. I'm going to miss my sterio that my hubby got me for my birthday a couple of years ago. I'm going to miss my sun/moon roof. I'm going to miss not being worried about every little new dent & ding & chip because she's so beat up anyway.

I was hoping to be able to wait till at least Jan. 2008 to buy a new (brand new) car, because I know that the manufacturers are supposed to have mid-size cars (like mine is) up to 30 miles-per-gallon or better by then. And I was hoping that it'd give us enough time to be able to afford the payments on a new car as well.

As it stands, we're going to have to take all 3 of the dividend checks instead & put one lump-sum down on a used, couple of years old, car. That means all the usual things that go with used cars: questionable warrenty, questionable previous ownership, questionable reasons for the previous owner's getting rid of it......

I was really wanting a new, 2008 Buick to replace my old '91 buick. I know Buicks are good, if somewhat expensive cars.... But it's a car I'd be driving (baring any major accidents that total the darn thing to undrivability) for another 16 years, Goddess willing, the way this one's been driven for 16 years.

*sigh* Just bummed. I know it's going to be a waste of gas, a waste of metal, and a goodbye to a mostly-faithful old car.

Anyway.... Enough griping, I suppose. I need to get myself something to eat & check some blogs, then get on to the bank, and on to work.

Have a Blessed Day!

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Bits & Pieces....

Well, at least ONE of my crops produced reasonably well for me this year. That would be my bigger rhubarb plant. Here's the load of stalks I got off of it this year. It was enough for 3-1/2 sandwich-baggies full of rhubarb pieces for cobblers this winter. I also got a half-baggie of rhubarb from the biggest of my dad's plants, for a total of 4 baggies full. Not bad! I think I could get considerably more rhubarb if next summer I keep on top of pulling it. It can be harvested continually throughout the summer and into the fall.
I also cut down my chives again. This time to harvest. Just went out with my kitchen shears & gave the whole darned plant a very brutal "crew cut". I decided to try drying the chives prior to chopping them up & jarring them. Typically I've cut them, then dried them. It's less messy, in the long run, to cut first, THEN dry. I wound up having to grind them (almost dang pureed them!) in my blender. The bits wound up much smaller than I prefer. Rather more powdery, instead of small bits of chive. I may get a bit more prior to the arrival of winter.

Speaking of fall.... As of Sunday, most of the fireweed in the area has "cottoned out". And over the last several years I have been very careful to note the date that the fireweed cottons out, and the date of our first snow. One of the local little "farmer's almanac" type predictions is that you'll see you're first snow right at 6 weeks after the fireweed "cottons out". And it's been consistently true for the last several years. Last year I predicted (based on that little "tool") that we'd see snow before DD's birthday, Sept. 30th. Sure enough, we had our first snow on the evening of Sept. 29th. DH was about ready to kill me. *wink* Like I wished it on us, or something. Not so!!!! I was simply using the predictive tool given to me to accurately predict the arrival of winter. Well, this year that prediction puts the first snow (termination dust) at approx. Sept. 23rd. Which means winter will be arriving a bit early for us this year. We're typically close (cold & rainy) by that time, but no REAL snow until about half-way into Oct. (Or even towards the end of Oct.) This year it's going to be a bit earlier than that.

Do ya like my new "lawn ornament"???? It's there on the other side of my car. Yep, that street light. Doesn't it look rather..... ooh, BIG for the area??? So much for being able to see the Aurora Borealis or stars in the winter sky. No longer!! Now.... NOW I get my whole house lit brightly by this bigger-than-it-needs-to-be street light that _I_ didn't want in the first place. DOT took it into their brilliant brains to come through and plant these bohemoths in our neighbourhood WITHOUT our neighbourhood's approval. That's right, we didn't have ANY say in the matter. DOT made the decision for us. Jerks. Ironically they're blotting out one of the very few things that many freezing alaskans have to appreciate in the winter: the night sky! *shaking head* The idiocy of modern "civilization". We're so damned afraid of the dark that we'll plant ugly mammoth street lights in our front yard in order to avoid seeing the moon, stars & aurora. The very things that NATURALLY light up our skies for us! *shaking head* Seeing this light out of my front door (because I was standing on my front step when I took the pic) almost makes me wish for Peak Oil. Because then the damned city won't be planting more lights to block out our natural wonders. *sigh* Ok. Done ranting about that. For now.

In other news..... My brake lights are out on my car, and I hate it! We found out last Tuesday. Wednesday DH had me go to Napa to see about buying a new brake light switch for my car. According to the Chilton's book for my car, it's an easy replacement, and a likely cause for the lights to be out, if all fuses & light-bulbs are ok. Should take all of about 5 minutes for the average joe. Not so! Not if your average joe has average joe sized hands. In which case those average joe sized hands aren't BOTH going to be able to fit up behind the steering column & remove the wires that are holding the brake-light switch in place. We wound up paying $90 for a local shop to replace the switch (after DH & I both cut open our hands, attempting to pull the switch out ourselves, with our "average joe sized hands"). It was $45 for the new switch itself. And we couldn't pick up the new switch or get the car into the shop till Friday. Ok. We coughed up the $$ to get it done. Guess what. Didn't solve the problem! The lights were STILL out on my car! *shaking head* So, Friday night, DH picked up all new bulbs for my car & made sure that they were brand-new, just in case one of the old bulbs had been blown without looking like it. And it worked! Temporarily. Because Sunday, when he wanted to check again, just to be sure, the lights were back OFF. *shaking head* So, I've been driving around for at least a week without brake lights. I hate it. I've been careful about my speed so I don't hopefully have to hit my brakes (and wind up with somebody else inadvertently rear-ending me). I've been leaving my headlights off so that I can use my parking lights (which DO work) to signal that I'm braking. And I'm hoping to the good Goddess that I don't have to drive at night (or in the rain) when I'll have to choose to use my headlights & not my parking-lights-for-brake-lights.

So, DH now has my car over at the FIL's replacing the fuses, just to be on the safe side, and checking the wiring while he's got the manual & a properly lit garage to do so in. I hope he can get it fixed, because otherwise we're going to have to shell out more $$ to get the car back in the shop & have the wiring gone over professionally. Which is more $$ than we have at present. *sigh* Just when we get out from under our credit-card debt, something else happens!!!! Murphy's Law, dontcha know!

Ok. I think that's it for now. Gotta go get my dinner made. We're having fried cod filets & "chips". Should be yummy.

Have a Blessed Evening!

Monday, August 13, 2007


Just wanting to share a music site my mom told me about:

You pick what kind of mood you're in: Calm or Energetic, Dark or Positive, what genres of music you like, and it gives you a line-up and starts to play. Kind of an online i-pod, it seems. Anyway, it's pretty cool.

This morning I picked calm & positive and so far I've heard Dave Brubeck, Nora Jones, Natalie Cole, Chris Rae, and Ry Cooder. Django Reinhardt & Michel Petrucciani are up next. A few of these musicians (Chris Rae, Django Reinhardt & Michel Petrucciani) I've never heard of before. Anyway, give it a go. It's nice to have somebody else pick the line-up for a change. I get to hear new things this way. And nothing I haven't liked yet.


Oh, and thanks for all the comments about the flower pics. I've been loving seeing all these flowers. We had some good rain, and some decently heavy winds last night, though, that knocked over one of my poppy plants. It had 3 blooms, and a number more pods ready to bloom, and I think it was just too heavy to keep standing in the wind. I'm going to tie it up before I head to work, hopefully the stem wasn't broken & it will recover.

My little red flowers are all gone. On Saturday I had 8 of the little blue flowers on that one plant. I've got a couple more of the Gerbera daisies now. 3 all together. I've also got a couple of little purple ones that are blooming & are such a pretty lavendar color.

Connie, I hope those poppies will bloom for you this coming spring!!!!


Have a Blessed Day!

Friday, August 10, 2007

The Fair is in town.....

.... And the first half of the week we had definite "fair" weather. IE: It was pouring rain & nasty. I guess the fair closed down at 9:30 on Monday evening because the weather was so poor.

But, last night was a beautiful night for it. DH picked me up after work and we went over. Took us almost an hour to find a parking spot, and it was a tight fit for DH's truck, at that. But, we found one and made our way on in.

Walked around for a bit. I found myself some new hair-sticks almost immediately. Found a bunch of beautiful things that I'd have loved to get. Incredible indian cut & embroidered tops & scarves. Lux velvet bohemian skirts & dresses..... Jewelry fit for gypsy queens. And I didn't buy any of those. The tops & skirts wouldn't fit me. I couldn't justify a new scarf when the weather's so beautiful. And besides.... I had my shopping list & I was sticking to it!!!! And with only $30 of my own spending money.... I had to make sure to get what was on my shopping list before anything else. So..... 2 new carved hairsticks for my hair. A bar of "Outrageously Orange" soap from one of my favorite local soap-makers. And some amber chip-beads. And by then I was pretty well out of money, certainly not enough left for a new scarf, or earrings, or a ring.

DD spent 7 bucks on a nifty new hair-wrap for her hair. It's this spiraled plastic (or rubber?) thingy that ends in a dangly bead or charm of one's choice. All sorts of wrap colors to pick from. DD chose white & purple for her hockey team colors, but ended the wrap with a soccer-ball charm as they woman selling them didn't have any hockey pucks. LOL Anyway, you take a section of hair, about the size of a pencil, give it an initial twirl to hold it, then wrap the rubber-wrap around the section, and around, and around, and around. It holds snuggly, and you wind up with a cute, colorful, removable section of hair. For those parents who don't believe in placing chemical color in their child's hair, an easy solution. LOL I wound up buying one for myself (with a couple of dollars from DH, as well) in green with a dragonfly charm at the bottom.

We had beef bulgogi & rice, and wantons, and kimchi from the HoDo House for supper. DD and I enjoyed the bulgogi & wantons. The kimchi wasn't as good as what I make, at least DH & DD didn't think so. DH said he didn't see anything food-wise that appealed to him, so he waited to eat till we got home.

DD got to go on a few rides. The spinning apple and a small roller coaster being the primary ones. Of course the huge slide, and the fun-mirror house don't really count as rides, but she didn't really want to go on the major thrill-rides after all, and DH chickened out about letting her. LOL

DH and DD talked me into getting old-time photos done of us. It was kinda fun, and kinda funny, but as usual I'm not terribly impressed with the way I photograph. *wry smile* And there was only one dress in the costume section that fit me, and rather poorly at that. Dresses back then just weren't made for chubby girls. And in one picture of just the hubby and I, the photographer had me sit, when really I should have stood next to DH. I look SOOOOO short & waist-less in that photograph. We did get a cute one of DD, though. We put her in a bonnet, with a parasol, and the dress, and she looks so darling. *grin* And DH wore the only thing that would fit him, a big ol' duster, and a stetson hat. He looked like this big, neck-less cow-rustler, esp in the pic where he's holding a shot-gun & I'm sitting at the table spread with (play) money & playing cards. We got 3 different poses. A family photo of the three of us at the table spread with flowers & a candle. DH and I at the table with playing cards, cash & a couple of bottles of booze & him with the gun. And the one of DD with the bonnet & parasol. It was $50 for all that.

Lastly DH & DD each played a couple of games. Neither won, though DD did get a consolation-prize stuffed lizard for playing ring-toss. LOL

We finally left the fairgrounds at about 11:30 and headed for home. Got home around midnight and let the dogs out and DH got a bite to eat. DD went straight to bed, no brushing of teeth or shower. I stayed up till about 1, letting Jenny have a little time to romp around the house with Puck before I shut her back in her kennel & said goodnight to him and went in for a shower. It was 2 this morning before I crawled into bed myself. I was out within a minute or two. I had also elected to shut off our alarm clocks & unplug the phone so we wouldn't be woken early. Figured this morning was a good time to sleep in. And except for hearing DH's alarm clock going off at 7, I did sleep. All 3 of us slept so solidly. Took DH 3 tries with the clock to get up this morning. I slept till 10, and DD slept to 10:30 before getting woken by the phone.


In other news..... I've been driving around town the last few days without brake-lights. The switch went out, and I stopped in to Napa on Wed. to see if I could pick up a new switch so DH could replace it (since the Chilton's book said it's a quick & easily fixed problem), but they didn't have any in stock, anywhere in Fairbanks or North Pole. They went ahead & ordered one from Anchorage to be here sometime this morning. So, I took my car to FIL's house and DH tried to remove the switch. It's jammed so far back up in there behind the steering column that it's next to impossible to get the necessary wires unplugged in order to remove the danged switch. I even got in there (after DH got out of the way) and tried. Sliced my finger open a bit for the effort. (Not too bad, a yucky little sore paper-cut when it comes down to it.) But, the way it's tucked behind the steering column.... I can't figure out how somebody can get 2 hands in there to unplug the thing & pull it out. *shaking head* So, we're going to have to shell out the $150 to have it professionally replaced, and hope that was all that was wrong with the brake-lights. And in the mean-time we're hoping I don't get pulled over & given a fix-it-ticket for not having brake-lights on my car. The city has started requiring that you pay a $25 processing fee, even when you DO fix the problem to avoid paying the whole ticket. *shaking head*

In fact, on the phone with DH just now and he can get my car in today. So I've gotta go so I can pick up the brake-light-switch, and get my car over to the shop in time to meet DH who's going to give me a ride on to work while the shop is working on my car. Now to persuade DD to shut off the x-box & let's get going.

Have a Blessed Day!

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Garden "Porn"

Just thought I'd share some pictures from the flowerbed in my front yard. This first one is actually a very pretty blue, not white. Kind of a baby-blue. But, the lighting makes it hard to tell that. Today there are 2 more blossoms about ready to pop out. The flowers only last a couple of days (3 or 4, tops), but every couple of days I find a couple new buds about ready to make their appearance. Lovely!

Next comes a poppy. I knew that one as soon as it bloomed. But, didn't have a clue what all those drooping green pods were prior to the flower blooming.

I'm not sure what this one is, except that I've seen it in autumnal bouquets. When it's open, it looks like a small sunflower without all the seeds in the center. It's actually orange in the center. But it's a beautiful light orange, radiating out to a deep rich orange at the edges of the petal. It's been kind of chilly these last couple of days, so the flower closed up partly. Not sure what all the other yellow flowers are. I think some of them are goldenrod, I'm ont sure what the dandylion-looking ones are. They certainly aren't dandylions. They're some sort of weed, though, as they're growing all over my backyard, as well as in my flower bed. But their pretty, so I left them. (Edited on 8/10/07 to add: The big yellow one is a Gerbera Daisy. Found a pic of it in a book yesterday.)

And last but not least, not sure at all what this one is. It's lovely, though. I've actually got 2 of these flowers blooming, at different spots in the flowerbed. I figured I'd just take 1 pic, though.

That's all I've got for today.

Have a Blessed Day!

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

The next bunch of pics....

This pic, DD is in the far right, the only green jersey.
I THINK that she's waiting to see what the Ref's call is, but I'm not sure. She just looks so contemplative, in this picture. Funny.
She's got control of the ball (technically), and she's racing the girl right behind her, from the other team, to KEEP control of the ball.
This, unfortunately, was not a goal-scoring kick. Nearly so. But, the goalie saved it. DD NEARLY connected with the goalie's face, in fact. I'm glad she didn't. That would have been a disaster! However, in a similar shot later in the game, DD DID get our team's only goal of the game.

We lost 2-1. But, it was a good game. Our team played their positions well, and really kept up the team-work and hustled.

Unfortunately for one of the girls on our team, she got the first goal of the game. On OUR goalie. Ooooh, she was so upset. It's the second time this season she's done that. Not on purpose of course. And she almost did it a second time in THIS game, but our goalie stopped the shot. *wry chuckle* But, I don't think there's a single child-athlete who hasn't done that at some point or another in their athletic careers. And I think Baseball is about the only team-sport in which it'd be impossible to score on your own team. *wry smile* So, none of us parents were particularly upset with the girl, of course. And some of the parents on the other team wanted to void that goal, because it wasn't scored by THEIR girls on our goalie. But, the Ref said that it wouldn't be appropriate. That is now how the game is played. *shrug* Oh well.

Have a Blessed Day!

Some pictures to share....

Well, I wanted to share some pics of the soccer game last night. DD is number 15 in the green & black. Our team's name is the "Green Highlighters." *rolling eyes* (DD was one of the few on her team voting for "Green Dragons", but it's a team of girls, so of course "Dragons" wasn't acceptable to them, and "Highlighters" won the vote. When rooting for them, we just yell "Go Green!" *wink*)

More to come.