Monday, September 29, 2008

Autumn Harvest Pics

So, here are some pictures finally of my harvest. Most of this just from my house here. (Ok, the 3 cabbages were over at the FIL's, and these are the only 3 of my plants that survived.)

First we have our rhubarb. Connie, I know you don't like rhubarb. But sweety, it may be time to realize that not everybody shares that aversion to this lovely "fruit". *grin* Tori, do you know what rhubarb is? It's this thick stalky veggie where it's ONLY the stalk that you eat. But it's so tart that it's got to be combined with sugar, and preferably some other (sweeter) fruit to make it palatable. The leaves are toxic, on rhubarb. Anyway, all I took this year was the one aluminum cookie-sheet full of stalks. I wound up dehydrating it all and tossing it in a jar for rehydration and addition to fruit & dumplings later this winter. Rhubarb is esp. good combined with strawberries or other berries. Though I've also tasted some excellent Rhubarb/Cherry jam. I cannot afford the cherries to make such for myself, though.

Now we come to some pictures of my second harvest of turnips. Can you tell how absolutely huge most of these are?!?! The pictures simply do not do justice to the size of some of these lovely big turnips.

Here we go with 19 (I think that's how many!) turnips arrayed on my deck-table. A couple of those are the ones bigger than my niece's head. Due to time constraints, I did NOT keep the turnip greens. (Also some doubt in my mind that they'd be edible this late in the season. And the hubby and kiddo aren't too keen on greens, either.)

This pic of the turnip was actually taken as a comparisson to the size of MY head. But..... Well, my head just isn't very picturesque, so I narrowed it down to JUST show the turnip. *grin*

And the following picture to once again show the size of the largest of my turnips next to my hand. And yet my hand looks a lot bigger in the photo than it is in real life. And the turnip a good bit smaller than it really was.

Next, Tay wanted to pose with the picture of the cabbages I grew at the FIL's house, and our potatoes. Mind you, these are the smallest of the cabbages grown.

And the potatoes seen here, that is simply the number of potatoes garnished from my two little potato plants out back of my house. Ironically, my two potato plants gave MORE potatoes per plant than the multitude of potato plants at the FIL's place. We suspect the ground over there was too compacted, while the soil in the "chicken wire barrels" was allowed to stay very loose and therefore grew more potatoes per plant.

Wow, I just counted and I didn't realize that I actually got 16 potatoes out of those two plants. I thought it was closer to a dozen.

Anyway, obviously a couple of the potatoes are only just as big as the last joint on my thumb. A couple of the others are as big as my fist, with most of them ranging about the approximate size of a baseball. I'm hoping to save the smallest 3 for seed potatoes for next year. I'm just not sure what are the most prime conditions for saving potatoes. Would it be advisible to bury them in one of the buckets containing the soil saved from this year?


RE: homeschooling, for Wendy. We signed on with a "School District" program. Here in Alaska, with so many native villages and even more-so, folks living in the "bush" in cabins as individual families, it's not UNcommon for folks to homeschool. So, we've got a variety of progams to pick from, covering various "school districts". Even those of us NOT living in those ACTUAL school zones or districts can participate through the home-schooling programs.

We signed on with the Yukon-Koyukuk School District Raven program. This gives us the funding to buy school materials for the year, and we get the supervision of somebody more experienced than we, and get a ready-made "home-school" experience. The school district allows the parent to pick they're child's curriculum, or piece together the child's curriculum from a variety of sources. The requirements for us? We must pass along quarterly reports and examples of Tay's work. In April, Tay must take the standardized test along with all the other kids who attend public school.

As for curriculum, we chose the Calvert curriculum, out of Baltimore, Maryland, for most of her school materials. But, we picked Saxon for math, as it's a curriculum both the hubby and I have experience with through our own schooling years ago. Tay's finding Saxon math much easier to understand than the "Everyday Math" she used last year. (Actually, I think "everyday math" may be part of the Calvert Curriculum, if you choose they're math program along with the rest of their curriculum.)

Our history and geography this year, for example, is from the text-book "Build Our Nation" and covers the US and American (North and Central, maybe even South American) history and geography from the last ice-age throug the current day.

Our science is also using an actual Text-book, focussing at the moment on plant cell-structure and biology.

For reading, we're assigned "Shiloh" by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor (mis-organized both last names in the last post). These are books and subjects that the student will be quizzed on in the Standardized testing at the end of the school year. I'm trying to cover and discuss more than just the basics covered in the text-books, as I'd like Tay to actually have some GRASP on why this is important to her life, but she's not making it easy.

This morning, in reading about the Native American tribes of the North West, South west, and East Coast, we came across mention of how the Native Americans of the Northwest had such a vast abundance of natural resources that they had no need for farming (sea-life and land animals for hunting and fishing, wild fruits & veggies for gathering), and with SUCH abundance they developed the tradition of Potlatches. I told her that Potlatching is a common practice in our very community even today. When a native Elder dies (this being the time this tradition REALLY comes to the forefront for those of us who are Non-native to see), their family has a Potlatch to distribute their belongings among their friends, family, and even business-friends. There was one not too long ago, here in Fairbanks, that was covered in our newspaper, because the woman was an active part of the Fairbanks area Native scene. And, Thanks to her own experiences with Breast Cancer (what finally killed her), she was also well known around Fairbanks for her work in Breast Cancer awareness and fundraising.

Anyway, so I'm trying to tie in what she's reading and learning about with the curriculum, with how it is involved in our lives even here in Fairbanks. Discussing land-forms in Geography, the book was mostly focussing on landforms in the lower 48. I was able to talk her through some land-forms that are local to us: Tanana, Chena, Salcha and Yukon rivers; Denali/Mt. McKinley; Prince William Sound. This gives her some idea of the concept using examples she understands.

Anyway, so that's what we're doing, in a nut-shell. Gotta head off to work, though.

Have a Blessed Day!

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Homeschool HELL!

Just to let y'all know, we've officially started homeschooling. Tay's materials came at 9 pm Friday night (as mentioned in previous post). I didn't get to start Monday morning, but started yesterday. Two days in and I'm thinking my prediction that one of us won't survive the year was pretty accurately made. The child is driving me nuts!!! She argues with me over EVERYTHING! Telling her one of her vocabulary words, and she starts out mis-spelling it, before I've even gotten the word out completely (much less spelled it for her). And when I corrected her as to the FIRST letter, she accused ME of telling her the wrong thing. (Word was "Gristmill" she said I told her to start with an "r", before I'd even gotten to start spelling it for her.)

She's pissy as hell about the book she's got to read. It's "Shiloh" by Phyllis Naylor Reynolds. She's seen the movie and evidently the dog dies in the end, so she's all pissy that now she's got to read the book. Even though it's only one chapter a day, and that one chapter took her maybe 15 minutes (not counting that she stopped in the middle to eat breakfast) to read. Then trying to talk her through some of the themes in the first chapter, and writing notes as to the first chapter...... She's playing INCREDIBLY dumb, then gets pissy with me when I call her on it.

And I'm cracking down on her as far as her hand-writing goes, which I've been telling her ALL SUMMER that I would. I'm discusted with the school that year after year after year, teachers made excuses for how bad her handwriting was, and rather than making her RE-write a damned thing, because her handwriting was illegible, they allowed it and excused it away. I'm having to PROPERLY instruct her as to the simple making of a lower-case "a" for example. And "u" and "r" and "y" and "g"...... The previous teachers have never even made her carry the tails from those "y's" and "g's" and "p's" and "q's" below the line. Now she thinks it's ok that they all sit above the lines on the page. And it's ME being "mean" because I'm finally a "teacher" (and MOM!) willing to push her to higher limits!

History was hard, because as much as I love it and would like to try to make it fun for her. I brought home books on paleo-Indians and Mammoths and Cave art, since those are the things being studied in History and Art, so that she could read some extra stuff. Esp. considering she claims to be very interested in all that. Instead she yelled at me for "making" her do extra work. It's not extra work, it's extra materials to browse as she feels. So that she can learn more about subjects she claims to have an interest in. Scott's evidently going to do the geography side of things, along with math. Tay asked that he do her Geography lessons.

Ok. Anyway, off to finish up today with Art, and she'll do Math and Geography with Scott tonight.

Just wanted to let y'all know that we HAVE started, thus cutting in on my computer time.

Have a Blessed Day!

Monday, September 22, 2008

Ahhhh, You all are such dears!!!

Thank you for the loving support the other day!!!!

Sian: as for the dress-making, I've made myself a couple of long (a-line) skirts, but that's pretty well the limit of my sewing skills. (And, those were when I was about 25 pounds heavier, so they no longer fit, thank the gods!) Also, even though it's funn to dress up and wear a dress or skirt & blouse on occasion, my job requires a LOT of kneeling and crawling around on the floor and such. In skirts it's either entirely out of the question (would shred the skirt or bottom of the dress) or terribly uncomfortable (scratchy carpets on bare knees). I'll wear a skirt to work every so often, but mainly on short, summery days. Couldn't do it on a regular, every-day basis. I wish I had the skill, nonetheless. Don't get me wrong, I'd love to make myself some lovely dresses. But even with the skill, it wouldn't work out well for work.

Slip: Yeah, I've tried telling Scott that Tay doesn't need him to be her best friend, she needs him to be her Dad. And he insists that he's always felt like his dad was HIS best friend, and he wants Tay to feel that way about him. Knowing Al (the FIL) though, I HIGHLY doubt he went through Scott's childhood regarding Scott as a best friend, or even desired to be Scott's best friend at that point. They ARE very close now, but I doubt they were as close then as Scott likes to imagine. Not how Scott sees it, though. *sigh* Maybe saying something to Al would help. It often does (ironically, seeing how often Al and I disagree on things), when Scott won't listen to me. And I think in this case Al would agree that while he and Scott are good friends now, it wasn't always the case that Al put friendship first with his son.

RE: Buying jeans. Well...... I found a couple pair to order online. I was searching for petite jeans in plus sizes (actually, using JUST that info in the search-engine) and came across this place that sizes your jeans by your "right fit". Literally Anyway, you type in your waist and hip measurements, and they tell you if you're a "yellow", a "red", or a "blue". I'm a blue (really curvey through the waist & hip). Then, dependent on your actual inches, they size you "1p, 1, 1T, 2p, 2, 2T, 3p, 3, 3T, 4p, 4, 4T, etc, etc." I wind up being a "3p" according to their measuring techniques. They've got 3 companies that carry pants measured and fitted according to this technique: Catherine's, Lane Bryant, and Fashion Bug. I found a pair of jeans from Fashion Bug that look like something I'd enjoy wearing, so I ordered 2 pair in MY size! Now to wait till the get here! (Shipping is supposed to take 5 to 8 days.)

Furthermore, my Mom read the last post and so sweetly sent me a GC to Lane Bryant for pants. I was just searching Lane Bryant's clothing selection, and found a pair of cords that I'd like, but even though the page says they carry this style in petite, I cannot find a place to ORDER the pair in petite size. So, I've emailed them with that question. Waiting for an answer back before I put in an order for more pants.

Anyway, THANK YOU for the love on the last post!!!! Maybe for those of my lady-friends who also have problems finding pants that fit, that will also help YOU! I'll let ya know if the pants fit as well as they're supposed to, when they arrive!


Gotta grab something to eat really quick before work. Then I get to go see what kind of nastiness Liz is cooking up this week. I hope she's chilled out, but I doubt it. I went in yesterday and found her yet again, in on her off day, VACCUMING of all things! (We've GOT a janitorial service that comes in daily and takes care of all that. I don't know WHY Liz insists that she go over it all again. And why Boss Lady allows her all this extra OT, and to do tasks that are thoroughly outside Liz's job description.) And I overheard her mention MY name and something about my perfume making her sick, to one of the Circ assistants. *rolling eyes* We'll see. I'll tell you what, if she keeps it up I'm going to tell Boss Lady that she's harassing me, because that's what it'll amount to. And if Liz thinks she can drive me off by being a rotten soul, she's wrong.

Have a Blessed Day!

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Ragamuffin, or Short, Fat Cow.

Those seem to be my only clothing options these days. I've got a couple of pair of jeans that fit great, but are a couple of inches too long (hand-me-downs from a coworker who lost weight). They're great in the waist, in the butt, in the thigh, but long enough that I've been walking all over the bottoms, shredding the hems. One pair is in considerably worse condition than the other pair, but they both need to be replaced with jeans that fit ME properly.

So, today I decided to stop in at the store that coworker said she got these jeans at for a couple pair just like these, but in short, instead of medium. Ya know.... Usually I'm OK with the fact that I'm exactly 5 feet tall. Being short doesn't bother me so much most of the time. I've kinda grown accustomed to it. Even FIL's razzing doesn't get to me any more.

But, when it comes to clothes shopping, it just makes me feel like a complete COW! Not only does that store NOT carry this brand any longer, but the jeans that WERE "my" size (a size 20), were TOO small. (THANK YOU LEVI's! YOU SUCK!!!! Nothing like making a girl feel horrible about herself, even given the fact that I've lost weight, like telling me that I'm BIGGER, even though I've actually dropped pounds.) And, all the other size 20's were MEDIUM length, or even LONG! COULD NOT find a single other pair of 20-short jeans at Gottschalk's. MUCH LESS the boot-cut I was looking for. That boot-cut or "flare-leg" jean draws attention DOWN toward the ankle, instead of allowing attention to rest on the fattest part of my body - MY ASS!

So, here I am at Gottschalk's, the ONE pair of 20-short, flare-leg jeans is TOO SMALL! F*@# THAT! I wasn't going to go to 22. I'll just try to find a different brand. One I know cuts their jeans a bit more generously: like Liz Clairborne or Gloria Vanderbuilt. But yeah..... NONE of them had 20-short, MUCH less those 20-short, "flare-leg" or "boot-cut" that I wanted. All 20-med. and 20-long, tapered leg. Again..... i don't need my butt looking any bigger than it already is, and I CERTAINLY cannot afford to shell out $50 bucks for a pair of jeans I'm going to shred in a month's time by walking all over them.

Well, THEN we (Scott, Tay and I) went to Play it again Sports and dropped over $350 on new gear for Tay for hockey, since she'd outgrown about half of the gear she wore till May. (Including BOTH pairs of skates!) After 2 hours of sitting there on a weight bench, reading magazines and waiting for Scott and Tay to finish up, I got up with a nasty back-ache, a growing head-ache, and the desire to get the clothes shopping over & done with so I could stop looking like a ragamuffin in my ripped-up, shredded jeans. (And they're not even STYLISHLY shredded, this pair. Oh no! This is the first of the two pair Diana gave me, and when the heels shredded to threads, I cut off the bottom hem. Then I have inadvertently proceeded to cause one leg to rip UP the length of the leg to almost mid-calf, by stepping on it over and over. My OTHER pair, the lesser-shredded of the 2, was in the wash at home. We left home in a hurry this morning to get Tay to the hair-stylist's in time for the ONLY opening available for today. So I didn't get my jeans into the dryer and ready to wear in time to ACTUALLY wear them. With hockey starting on Monday, her hair needed a good trimming.)

We went to Fred Meyer's where I've had reasonably good luck finding jeans (20-short) that fit me, before. Though I've never looked there for "flair-leg" or "boot-cut" before. NOT ONE PAIR of 20-short, to be found. Not even any 18-short "flare-leg"s. I wound up trying on 2 pair of Gloria Vanderbuilt 18-short "tapered leg", and wouldn't you know it..... I could hardly sit or squat in them. I KNOW I didn't just pack 10 pounds back on, even if I AM on my freaking period. How come all these jeans are refusing to fit, all the sudden?!?!

I left Freddy's in tears. I HATE feeling like a short, fat cow. And yet...... When NONE of the jeans in my size will fit.... That's EXACTLY how I feel. Scott wanted to try Walmart, but their jeans have a tendency to be sewn of crappy material (thin, bad-quality denim) and poorly sewn. I refuse to buy my jeans there, any more. THEN Scott mentioned going to Sears, as we hadn't tried looking for jeans there yet. I can only take so much humiliation in one day, though. F*** that. I'm not going to Sears today, to be shot down yet again on finding jeans that fit and feel good on me.

As bad as it sounds to say..... I feel like not leaving the house again. I mean, Scott confronted me right off the bat with "why're you wearing those ratty old things?", when Tay and I met up with him at Gottschalk's. (He had to work this morning, a couple of hours.) Never mind the fact that he KNOWS I don't have any decent jeans at this point, he was POINTING OUT that I looked like a ragamuffin. Then to have manufacturer after manufacturer carry jeans that either emphasize the size of my @$$ or don't carry jeans in my size AT ALL..... Naw, not gonna wander around any more stores being made to feel even worse than I do. And I really just kinda feel like not going out AT ALL!

Then of course, Scott got mad at me when I told him I wanted him to take me back to my car (left at the Lib., so we'd only be taking ONE vehical all over town) so I could go home, while he and the kiddo went to pick up her new bed. He started getting upset with ME because I was in such a bad mood over the pants, said he didn't see why _I_ had to go spoiling what WAS a "fun day" as far as he was concerned. YEAH, 'cause it's MY idea of fun to be humiliated over and over about my size. And on top of that, Tay was getting rather short-tempered with ME because I wasn't being quick about the shopping. As if I had any control over how hard it is to find jeans in this town that fit me.

Screw it.... SO here I am, sitting at home. Yeah, quite frankly feeling rather freaking sorry for myself. F&&& the common sense that says "Kati, at least you HAVE clothes" or "Kati, at least you've got the food to BE fat." Or "Kati, well why don't you use this as incentive to lose MORE weight so you'll actually BE a "normal" size." No, I feel crappy, and I feel like eatting ice-cream, and I wish I had a freaking girl-friend around who's house I could run to for hugs and crying and ice-cream (or brownies....).

And I've been reminded recently too, that I DON'T have any really close friends, close by. Tay was being a *hit the other day, and yelling at Scott and I, and refusing to help out around the house after she'd been "asked" nicely, and after being yelled at quite a bit, I started yelling back. Then Scott started yelling at ME and telling me that Tay doesn't think I love her because I yell at her so much, and why do I always have to yell at her so much..... Never mind the fact that she'd been yelling at me ALL DAY (first thing in the morning, till I left for work.... as soon as I walked in the door AFTER work....) God...... I wanted to run away. I'm tired of always feeling beat-up upon by them. Tay's learned which buttons to push to get Scott off being mad at HER and point the blame at me. She's learned how to play him against me, and even though _I_ see it, he doesn't.

I'm just so sick of it. And the fact of the matter is, I don't have anywhere I can go when I need a break. Scott's parents are HIS parents and quite honestly, even if his Mom wasn't so wholely focused on the SIL and niece & nephew's, she's still Scott's mom and will side with him. I don't have any friends close that I can go to, to hide out for a couple of hours. Instead I wind up either sitting out on the back deck, freezing my butt off, or sobbing in the shower. But still, listening to Tay scream at me, and Scott blame me. Ever since I got back from Spokane, I can't help but think maybe Scott WANTED me to stay down there. And maybe I should have.

Liz (the brown-noser) is making things miserable at work again. She got her nose out of joint last Sunday after Diana and I put her in her place as to trying to tell US how our Sunday schedual should work. Diana and I have been working together for 3 years, and we've got our Sunday habits and work-ways figured out, and we'd already started instructing the new lady, Roxie, on how things go on Sunday. And Roxie was doing JUST FINE with working with Diana and I. Then Liz came in on her OFF time, for some reason, and started telling Roxie that how Diana and I had instructed Roxie was "wrong" and telling Diana and I off for having figured out our own rhythm..... Anyway, so Diana told Liz (nicely) where to stuff it, and I backed Diana up. So Liz took herself off in this snit-fit, and came in the following day, complaining to "Boss Lady" about how my perfume was making her sick. I'd been wearing this perfume for a couple of weeks, by then, and Liz hadn't said a damned word about it. All the sudden she was in full-blown panic-attack mode about how this was making her sick??? Anyway, after Liz went home, Boss Lady asked me (nicely, I'll give her that) to please stop wearing the perfume to work. I did say ok, that I'd stop. Tuesday, Liz came in and started making all nice and pretending to be upset about the trouble she'd caused me. Bull! She's got some serious passive-aggressive tendencies, and some major control issues, and when we don't let her walk all over us and allow her to run our work-day, she winds up pulling this passive-aggressive BS.

Anyway, when Liz started "apologizing" for the "trouble" she'd caused over my perfume, I told her off about it, reminded her that I KNEW she'd not had ANY problem with it for 2 weeks (and I've worn the components to this perfume SEPERATELY for years, but finally thought to combine them and it smells fantastic, as even LIZ said at one point), till she got her nose out of joint over being put in her place on Sunday. I told her that I wasn't falling for her little snit-fit. She hasn't spoken to me since, which is fine by me. But instead she's "put a bug in Boss Lady's ear" several times this week, getting me or coworkers who are friendly to me, chewed out for various things. And Boss Lady seems to have finished out the week in a pissy-ass mood herself, looking for reasons to chew folks out. *shaking head* So, work isn't even feeling like a refuge these days.

Seriously..... I want to run away. I wish I had a little cottage in the woods, stocked with yummy goodies and good books and good music, and NOBODY to piss me off for miles around, and I'd love to just go there and get away from everybody and everything. For like a month.


Tay's curriculum FINALLY came yesterday at 9 pm. UPS had it, and it took the guy that long to drop it off. Of course, as soon as I got the box opened and started making sure that all the parts & pieces were there, Tay started asking me what we were going to be doing for her first Art lesson, and which was the first book to read for her reading course...... I haven't even had a chance to read more than the first 3 pages of the Instructor's manual, so I don't have ANY idea. But of course Tay thinks I should have it all figured out by now. *sigh*


One decent thing..... We had the inlaws over for supper last night. I made lasagna and they loved it. And MIL didn't bitch about my house being too messy or anything. It's something, at least.


The garden at FIL's has been mostly pulled up. The beans and peas, lettuce, spinach, chard, beets, carrots, radishes, are gone. There are about 5 more cabbage to be cut. The potatoes will be dug up tomorrow by FIL and Scott. FIL is hoping we can go ahead and get the green tomatoes canned this coming week. *shrug* That's fine. He pulled the last few that were starting to ripen on the vine, and brought them over yesterday for Scott and I. He knows that I'm hoping ONE of my Black's will ripen enough to save the seed from, so he brought me the rest in case one of my Black's are in that bunch. That was nice of him.

Here at home, I pulled my turnips last week. I got some huge ones. (2 that were bigger than my infant-niece's head! Most were larger than my fist, but not-quite head-sized. A couple were small-ish. 19 in all.) I've got a couple of pics to share, but didn't get them uploaded yet. I also made the last of my swiss chard this week. I left my beets in, just in case they still manage to grow at all, now that they're not over-shadowed by the turnip greens. I'm probably going to pull my 2 tomato plants inside tonight or tomorrow. I've been holding off bringing them inside because I was hoping the tomatoes would ripen naturally, outside.

But the forcasters are predicting snow tonight or tomorrow. It feels like it, too! (Though, today is clear-blue skies, so it's unlikely we'll see snow tonight.) The fireweed flowers bloomed out and then the plant cottoned out early this fall, so we'll have a kinda-early winter. About a week and a half early, at this rate. Certainly before Tay's birthday, this year.

Anyway........ I think that about covers the crappiness for this week.

Hope y'all are having a decent weekend.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

News for the week???

*grin* I suppose it has been that long since I posted.

Ok. First, my neck is feeling immensely better. Still a twinge now and again, but much better. I haven't taken painkillers for it (or anything else for that matter) since Wednesday, and even then I was down to a dose of Extra-strength (on shelf, not OTC) Tylenol maybe once during the day. So, no lasting damage. And should that muscle start flaring up again, I've got a couple of valium and vicodin left to see me through to a visit to a REAL doctor, next time. *wry smile*


No moose as yet. Scott came back to town yesterday and picked up Tay, and took her out with him and his dad. She actually got to go OUT HUNTING with her daddy yesterday for a couple of hours. (About 2-1/2, he said.) She did well sitting quietly, while they were waiting to see if any moose crossed their path. Thing is, it's been somewhat rainy, so they're not sure how much longer they're going to stay out. (Not sure, but tomorrow -- the 15th -- may be the last day of moose season for gun-hunting, though Scott and Al both have bow permits and can continue to hunt with bow in and around town even, till Nov. 1st.) Scott promised Tay that even if it was too rainy to hunt, he'd take her fishing. They're hunting somewhere along the Tanana (river), and where they're at, it's also legal to keep any berbot and grayling you catch. I hope they catch some, I've only tried grayling once, and I've never had berbot. We're hoping that next year I can take a week off for hunting myself. I didn't want to this year, because I wasn't sure what would be going on with the NP Branch Lib. job, and I didn't want to schedual for hunting right when I might be starting that position. But, I'd LOVE to get to go back out hunting next year. I'll be applying for all the caribou and bison and such permits when the time comes next spring, in hopes that my name gets drawn as one of the lucky few each year who gets the chance to go out hunting for that particular animal in that particular area. (To keep too many animals from being taken in areas where they may be somewhat limited anyway, while still allowing for SOME hunting of them, the state of Alaska issues a small number of permits for caribou for example, taken from the Ferry and Rex Trail area. Or Bison from an area near Delta Jct. Or cow moose -without baby in tow. Other areas, like the North Slope for caribou, may have considerably more open hunting rules - 2 per registered hunter, till the Fish & Game officials decide that enough have been taken -and they monitor closely- that they shut down the hunting altogether in that area.) Anyway, so next year I'll be getting my hunting liscense for the year, and applying for a Ferry permit, and a Bison permit, maybe one or two others as well. (It does cost a bit, 30 or 40 bucks, to apply, beside the cost of a hunting liscense.)


I finally got the word from HR yesterday that I did NOT get the job. By this time, I'd rather strongly suspected that would be the case, so while a bit disappointed, I'm rather past the point of grief.

I actually called early yesterday morning, to ask what had been decided and Renee answered her line almost sounding like she knew it was me, and what I was going to ask. It's funny, because talking to Renee and Bonnie has become almost so regular, that they're tone is one of semi-familiarity. Even dropping off the application to Bonnie this last time, she took it without more than a cursory "Is everything here?" Unlike her past inquisitions into whether I've met the minimum requirements. *wry smile* They're getting to know me. And when Renee called yesterday to tell me the bad news, she sounded rather disappointed that she WAS passing on bad news. She's seen my application come past her desk time and again, she's talked to me on the phone time & again. I'm beginning to think I've got a couple of folks there in HR pulling for me. *smile* And it certainly makes me feel better about having to call or interact with Bonnie and Renee, or even having to hear bad news from them, knowing that they have SOME inkling of what this means to me by now.

Anyway, so it's going to mean continuing the drive to and from town, 5 days a week for now. *sigh* I'd really, really hoped that this wouldn't be the case this winter. Besides, I could have used that extra 10 hours a week (more, when you factor in the driving time) for schooling Tay and whatever other lessons we decided to sign her up for. As it is, we opted NOT to sign her up for guitar lessons after all. She's rather disappointed, but as Scott and I told her, if she wants to continue to focus on hockey for the ultimate pay-off of a chance at playing in the Olympics, we cannot take time away from that for guitar lessons. Maybe next year will be an option, or lessons during the summer if she wants to take less time for soccer...... But, we've only got a limited amount of time each week, we've got to prioritize, and that goes for her as well.

Her Spanish seems to be going well. I had a chuckle this past week when she came in from playing while I was making dinner and asked me if I knew what "hombre" and "nina" and "hola" and "adios" meant, and I was able to spout the English translations back to her without problem. Then she asked ME what the word for "boy" (nino, of course) is, and was suprised when I told her. She rather accusingly asked me how I knew these if I'd claimed to never take Spanish lessons myself. *grin* I told her that many of these words are actually being used by English speaking folks now as well, and since Spanish (and it's lingual subsets) is the MOST widely spoken language in the world, of COURSE I know the meaning of some of these words. Then she said "Thank You" (Gracias) for something the next day, and was stumped when I responded with "De Nada" ("you're welcome", or more precisely "it's nothing"). *grin* Once again, I caught her off guard by having a Spanish response to her Spanish comment.

I'm kinda considering taking the Spanish course myself, to give her somebody to converse with. But, I think that I've got enough of a problem spending too much time online, as it is, without hooking up to learn Spanish every morning. *wink* And with various bits of French and German knocking around in my brain, from both childhood and my years of lessons in HS, I think adding more of a 3rd language may cause problems with some seriously funny mix-ups in which words I use where. (As it is, I've forgotten how to count in French, as I start out with French and wind up with Spanish. German is a bit easier in the counting, as I've been doing that since toddlerhood.)

I talked to the "teacher" at the Raven headquarters on Thursday, and she said that she'd called Calvert on Monday about our curriculum, and they promised her to have it in the mail by Wednesday. So, it should be HERE any day now. We're still waiting, though.


On the gardening "Front", we've still got a bit in the ground over at the inlaws. We've got several tomatoes over there finally ripening. I took one ripe Stupice off one of my plants here this past week. (I'll enjoy the eatting, but more than that I'm going to save the seed from that ONE tomato for planting next year, in hopes that the plants & fruits grown from THOSE seeds will be hardier to my climate than this parent plant started out being.) I'm still waiting for a Black from Tula, to harvest the seed from. And seeing as I don't even have any more seed from my origional order, the best hope I've got is that one of my Blacks will ripen. We're going to evidently try canning green tomatoes, if they don't ripen before they start rotting on the vine. But, I've got a couple of "Blacks" on the vine still here at home, covered over with plastic that I'm hoping will ripen yet, since that one of my Stupice tomatoes did, that way.

Some great news...... I noticed early on this week that the ONE pepper plant that actually grew (in my kitchen window, here at home) is sporting some flowers!!!!! So, I've been pollinating it by hand with a never-been-used paint brush. I hope that pollinating the flowers from other flowers on the same plant will work. I don't have a second plant to use for cross pollination. IF the flowers produce peppers, they're going to be a sweet-mild (paprika type, I believe) pepper. And, I'll be saving the seeds from those peppers as well, for planting next year. Again, in hopes that any subsequent generations are hardier to the local climate than this single parent-plant has been. It's funny, thinking about Peak Oil, and wondering that the possibility is that I may wind up being able to produce paprika for my own family's consumption. (And, providing seeds to other folks who may also desire to grow some for themselves?!?!?! How cool would that be?!?!?! Being able to provide an Alaskan-hardy spice-plant to folks who didn't think about flavoring the way they might have thought about potatoes, or not thought about providing these things for an oil-scarce future at all.)

I asked Al (my FIL) the other day if we were going to store the pots WITH soil in them for the winter, once we pull the dead tomatoes and cucumbers out of them. He said that he's not going to, he's just going to toss the soil out into the garden and purchase a NEW truck-load of topsoil next year. *shaking head* I'm thinking that the few pots I've got here at home will be allowed to dry out thoroughly, hauled into the car-port in the corners, and kept over-winter. I don't want to have to figure on a POSSIBLE load of soil next year, when that may not be a reality. I won't have as many pots of soil as he's got over there, but I'll have at least a beginning. Which is more than we may have over there for potted plants, next year.

I still have to get my turnips in. I've got one out there that Scott thought had actually popped itself out of the ground, it's so damned big. *grin* Unfortunately I'm sure they'll be incredibly worm-riddled. That rather bums me out, knowing how much I'm throwing away because some sort of worms got into the plants. (And no, I'm not tossing the ENTIRE turnip just because of worms, but a lot of it's getting cut away and tossed, because I refuse to eat worms, as yet.)


I think that pretty well covers it for now.

Have a Blessed Day!

Monday, September 08, 2008

Ahhhh, What a Monday....

So, in an attempt to catch whatever dog it is that's been peeing on my back deck every morning, I was up at 7:30 to sit out in the cold, half-light of morning, waiting. I DID catch a dog, not sure if it's the one that's been peeing on the deck. (Actually, pretty sure which dog it IS, but have yet to be able to prove it.) Anyway, the dog that I caught is a stray. Really sweet big bear of a Golden Retriever mix. He's been wandering the neighbourhood for about a week now, very under-fed, un-cared for look to him. I coaxed him into OUR dog's kennel (the big, outside one) and set him up with food, water and a ratty old blanket to lay on. (He'd seemingly rather lay on the ground than the old blanket, though.) THEN I called Animal control and asked that they send out an officer to collect the dog, since I have no way of transporting him to town myself.

They told me it'd be this afternoon before six, at the soonest, tomorrow morning in all likelyhood. *sigh* Jenny and Puck are considerably less than pleased to smell this strange dog on Tay and I, and to be unable to use THEIR kennel. But, I can't have them mixing with this dog as he's got at least one infection going on (in his left eye). I don't want them catching anything he might have. (And yes, Tay and I are scrubbing our hands after petting on the dog.) He's a sweet dog, though. He's been dubbed "Bear" by the neighbourhood kids. I hope they don't all hate me eternally for calling the pound to pick him up. Thing is, winter's coming on and it's not doing this poor beast ANY good to keep him in the neighbourhood (various neighbours have been putting food out for him), but not cleaned up and officially adopted.

The Animal Control folks can take him and assess whether cleaning him up will do any good and increase his adoptability, or if the infection(s) are such that he's better off put to sleep. Either way, poor "Bear" will be better off than running the town all winter and either freezing to death or getting hit by a vehical. (Or mauled by a wolf, if they move in close again this winter.)

So, that's my good deed for the day, I suppose.

And, as yet, no puddle of dog piss on my back deck.


My neck is feeling better. I got through yesterday with only Advil and Extra Strength Tylenol. Then right before I went to bed, I took a valium and a vicodin to allow my neck the night to loosen up. I'm hoping the Advil and Tylenol will suffice for today.

Scott's off hunting moose (saw a big one this morning, but it was too dark to safely get a shot off, he said), so that leaves Tay home alone all day long. The MIL is going to pick Tay up after work and take her to THEIR house for supper, then I'll pick Tay up from there on my way home from work this evening. That'll at least mean Tay has a few hours with company and a decent warm meal for supper.


I DO want to say, considering my previous thoughts on Palin: Bear in mind that these are MY opinions of her. When I say that I speak as an Alaskan on my feelings for Palin, I don't mean that I speak for ALL Alaskans regarding EVERYBODY's feelings for Palin. My opinions are MY opinions, they are certainly NOT indicative of the feelings of ALL Alaskans for Palin. (Some may agree completely, some may disagree completely, some may agree on parts and disagree on others. You know the saying: "Opinions are like @$$holes, everybody has one.")

(Kind of a funny aside: There is evidently some new little media flap regarding a past disagreement between Palin and a former library director of the library for the town where Palin was previously mayor. Evidently that same former director now works at MY library. We have NOT been given any information as to the details as to what happened. I do not know ANYTHING except the name of the person who is that former library director. I will say that I DO like this person very well. This person is a GOOD person. I find it rather funny, and I am personally curious. I also will NOT be asking this person for details myself, as it really isn't any of my business. But it's rather ironic how small a place Alaska feels like sometimes. The fact this person I now work with had disagreements on a professional level with the woman who is the VP candidate for the GOP...... Alaska may be BIG in territory, but it is very small when it comes to interactions with other Alaskans.)

Ok. Gotta get a move on and head off to that very library for my day's work.

Have a Blessed Day!

Friday, September 05, 2008

For Those Who've Asked....

I thought I'd better go ahead and just type up my feelings on Palin. As an Alaskan, with some thoughts on her experience as governor...... Here goes.

Many folks feel she did a great job during her time as Mayor of Wasilla. Bear in mind, Wasilla has always been the last major stop on the drive between Fairbanks and Anchorage. When we made our twice (sometimes 3 or 4 times) yearly trips to Anchorage as a kid, Wasilla was where we'd stop for one last potty-break/fuel-up before that last 45 minutes of the drive into Anchorage. Wasilla was, at that point, little more than a dot on a map with a couple of gas-stations. Now it qualifies as a full-blown town, smaller than Fairbanks, MUCH smaller than Anchorage, but a town in it's own right. However, as town's go, it's highly unattractive. It's all strip-malls and box-stores, lining either side of the highway that runs through the center of the town. Maybe it blossomed financially under Palin's guidance as mayor, but she did NOTHING (from what I've seen, anyway) for the appearance of the town. The "main drag" through town is a 6 lane highway bisecting the Walmarts from the Safeways, strip malls from home depots, major equipment parts & maintanence stores from Arby's. The one picturesque lake that used to sit off to the side of the highway, that used to be bordered (on the road side) by a nice little park, is now looking like many other McMansion subdivisions. The town has little in the way of "curb appeal", very little in the way of Community center or Public Works projects for the betterment of the community.

Maybe she did a GOOD job on bringing in big business (Walmart) to boost the taxes in the city's coffers, but little to none of that money appears to have gone into beautifying the city, or making it a TRUE city.

I DO appreciate the fact that in a very short amount of time she's gone from being a working woman, fishing alongside her hubby in his fishing business and being a PTA parent and hockey mom, to mayor of her city, to governor of our state. In one sense, she's done what I think needs to be done MORE: Governors and Senators and Representatives in our states actually BEING from our states. No more of this "Oh, I moved to New York 2 years ago and now I'm a New Yorker and running for Senate in this, my home state!" That's BS! On a local, State, and Fed. level, we should require that the folks representing us at home and away actually be FROM our fine state! We won't allow a foreign citizen to rule our country (think "Schwartzeneger for president"), why allow a man who grew up in Maine to presume to tell Texans he's "from" their state and should be their governor?

As the Governor of our state, she has done a GOOD job thumbing her nose at the long-time-reigning politicos that have sold out, long since, to the oil, gas and coal companies. She's told BP and Conoco Philips that they can shove their "generous offer" to put in a natural gas pipeline, as it returned only fractions of the likely income back to Alaskan pockets. I DO appreciate that!!! I don't necessarily like the thought of these natural gas wells and pipelines, but she's at least made it clear that if it's GOING to happen, it's going to benefit Alaskans with more than just jobs. (And, really..... A lot of folks from the states come up and work in these jobs, shipping their paychecks back home to Texas and Oklahoma. So even the claims by BP and Conoco Philips and Exxon Mobile that THEIR offer would best provide Alaskans with jobs, is actually somewhat bogus.) Palin, in that sense, is keeping in mind that the state constitution places the ownership of state property with the citizens of the state. Big Oil and Coal have for too long given Alaskans the shaft, drilling for our oil reserves and mining our coal (and gold, for that matter) and then charging Alaskans up the @$$ to buy back the very oil they're drilling out of our soil.

This year, Palin has forced through an allowance that is going to give all Alaskan citizens (if you qualify for a dividend check, you qualify for the fuel-suppliment allowance) $1200 to help pay for fuel and electric costs for the year. Granted (and thankfully!) this is a one time thing. It will buy our state a year to at the very least start implimenting sources of electric other than just coal, oil and gas. (Unfortunately, on an individual level, most folks are looking at this as an extra $1200 per person with which to buy that new TV or car. Some folks are using it to retrofit their homes with woodstoves and buy the wood needed to heat for the winter, some are also using some of the $$ to further insulate their homes. But, most are looking at it as a way to buy more toys.) As a state, though..... We don't seem to recognize the other ways in which we can produce electric for our homes, such as Solar, Wind, hydro-electric and geothermal. We live in a volcanically active state, meaning that Geothermal is an option. (One local businessman HAS tapped that to power his resort. Most people just don't consider it, though.) The Fairbanks area sits between two rivers (Tanana and Chena, with the Salcha just a bit further south) all of which could be tapped for hydro-electric, at least part of the year. (There is already a dam on the Chena, though it's not used at all to generate electric.) Delta Jct. has started investigating Wind farms, seeing as theirs is the windiest town in the state. Even here in NP, though, we get enough wind that it's worth looking into, even if it's on a more personal scale such as wind-mills on the roofs of homes to generate power for lights and water pumps and such. Solar is one option that is being heavily researched, seeing as we get LOTS of sunlight in the summer, but very little in the winter. Last winter, at the Solstice, an intensive study was done at UAF to investigate exactly how much electric can be garnished from solar panels during a week in which we only see about 4 hours of sunlight per day. The results haven't yet been made public, but there is great hope that the results will show that even on days with little to no sunlight, enough electric is garnished from that little bit of sunlight to make it worth-while to invest in solar panels and solar-farms.

Anyway, unfortunately even with the options we DO have for other sources of powering our homes and our lives, Palin still seems to focus MAINLY on oil, gas and coal. She's a little more willing than other of our past governors (Murkowski!) to consider solar, wind, hydro and geothermal, but she's still focusing mainly on fossil fuels. The difference being that she's viewing these fossil fuels as the property of Alaskans and that Alaskans should be getting more money from them than BP, Conoco Philips and Exxon Mobil do. She's tired of seeing Alaskans screwed on this. So yeah, I do kind of like the fact that she's told the big Oil to shove-off if they're not willing to pay Alaskans a fair rate for our state's natural resources. But at the same time, it bugs me that she's focused on MAINLY fossil fuels in that fight for fair prices for Alaskans.

Her stance as staunchly Pro-life hasn't been much of an issue during her 2 years as Governor. And while I appreciate the fact that she stands by her values without letting lobbyists sway her with their buy-outs, I worry that as Vice Pres. (and potentially Pres. if McCain were to keel over while in office) she may attempt to force her very adamant belief in Pro-life on the rest of the country. At the very least, by way of appointing very conservative judges to the Supreme Court. I'm concerned that once in office she'd advocate laws that reverse Roe V. Wade and further even the movement to restrict a woman's right to birth control. (Though, given the spacing of her 5 children, I would guestimate that she may have used birth control herself between pregnancies.) My concern is not that she's going to set out to outright take away a woman's right to effective and non-costly birth control, but that her adamantly Pro-Life stance may be used as a stepping stone by those who WOULD further try to restrict women from using chemical forms of birth control, or might restrict a woman's right to sterilization procedures without first gaining a man's consent to do so.

At the same time, though.... Palin seems to still have some understanding that the Bill of Right's isn't the SOURCE of our rights, that our rights are God given, or right's we're BORN with. The constitution and Bill of Rights are there to remind the GOVERNMENT that we were born with these rights. I do somewhat wonder if she would appoint judges who would uphold the CONSTITUTION and it's values over their own personal religious values.

Mind you, I DO NOT think that Palin has the extreme fundamentalist mentality that some folks ascribe to her. I do not put her on the same leve of republican toxicity as Ann Coulter or Rush Limbaugh. I don't think she's against a woman working outside the home and being a business woman and forgoing children if they so choose. I don't even have a problem with the fact that she is PERSONALLY against abortion. It's my concern though, that when pushed she may give in to the pressure of the extreme religious "right" and appoint judges who will restrict our reproductive rights as women.

(My take on Palin vs Ann Coulter is that while Ann Coulter strikes me as a woman who hates women and sees herself as the rare exception to the rule that women should be confined to the house, "barefoot and pregnant" if you will, subjugated to the will of men. Palin doesn't come across as seeing herself as the only exception to the rule of patriarchy. I DO think Palin loves all her children to such a degree that she cannot grasp why another woman would NOT want to bring a child into the world, but I don't think she believes it is a way to keep women subjugated to men.)

Palin's not perfect, any more than ANY of us are. As a governor, I would vote for her again. But, as Vice President...... I don't think so. I DO believe she goes into it with the best of intentions for the nation as a whole. But, I won't be voting for her on McCain's presidential ticket.

And, at the same time, I'm having some major qualms lately as to Obama. He's shown he's more of a politico than he was letting on at first. He's pandering to those who's support he wants to win. I'm not happy with him lately either. But, I'm sick over all of the almost complete hypocrisy of the republican party. They claim to desire to protect our rights, while pushing through the Patriot Act. They claim to be against beaurocracy, and yet Homeland Security came about while the country was being run by republicans. They claim to be morally superior to democrats, all the while showing extreme lack of judgement (sex in bathroom stalls with male prostitutes; mistresses; taking bribes from lobbyists and big business companies in exchange for voting AGAINST the American people). The republican party has shown that their "moral superiority" is sheer hypocrasy.

(Oh, and FWIW, I LOVED the point in Palin's speach during the RNC the other night where she said she's fighting to bring down the "Good Old Boy" club and reduce the stranglehold that Big Business has on Americans. As much for the fact that she was saying this out loud, in a very public forum, as for the expressions of panic on the faces of a great many of the "Good Old Boy" repubs sitting in the audience. Not saying that I believe she'll be able to do it, but I found it rather comedic to see her words being registered by those same "good ol' boys". And, quite honestly, it was too absolutely adorable the way her youngest daughter was attempting to smooth down the hair on the baby's head by licking her hand and running it over his head. And, gotta say that I didn't disagree with her statement that the only difference between Hockey Moms and Pittbulls is that Hockey Mom's wear lipstick.)

Anyway. I hope that this gives y'all some idea how I feel about Palin, as an Alaskan.


In other news..... *wink* I wound up back at the ER yesterday. To make a long story somewhat shorter, I woke up Tuesday morning with a bit of a crick in my neck on the right side. Didn't think too much of it, except maybe I'd slept on it wrong the night before. Wednesday, I wound up leaving work early because my neck hurt so bad I could barely turn it from side to side or look up at the ceiling or down at the floor. Yesterday (Thursday) when I woke up and could hardly move my head at ALL, I decided enough was enough and took myself in to the First Care clinic (an urgent care clinic, walk-ins only). They got me right in to see a PA (physicians assistant). He decided that given the amount of pain I was in and the stiffness in my neck, that even though I wasn't running much of a temperature (99.5 deg. F), he recommended that I get over to the ER and be looked over there. He was concerned that it might be meningitis, and the First Care clinic doesn't have the means to either test for or treat meningitis. So, on over to the ER I went, crying over the thought of having a needle stuck in my neck (that's how they test, by removing fluid from the upper spine), and called Scott to meet me there. They took me back, got my vitals, got me situated in a private room, and after about 5 minutes of being looked over by a Dr. and asked if I'd had any serious falls or lifted something too heavy above my head (no, to both questions), he'd come to a diagnosis.

It is "Torticollis". That is, "A condition where the neck is turned, making the head tilt toward one shoulder and the chin point toward the opposite shoulder. Spasmotic Torticollis, also called cervical dystonia, is most common in middle aged adults and more common in women. In spasmodic torticollis, the muscles around the neck may spasm off and on, or all the time. There may be other forms of torticollis with varying causes such as an injury." Basically, the muscle that reaches from behind my right ear, where the spine enters the skull, and reaches across the outside of my neck, down to connect to my collar bone in front, is spasming and cramping. I was given a soft cervical collar and a handful of prescriptions for Vicodin, Valium, and 800 mg Ibuprofrin to relieve the pain, calm my body, and loosen the muscles. I've been instructed to keep myself well dosed on all 3 for a couple of days, to allow the muscles to start healing on their own, and to wear the collar as needed, but not all the time. (They don't want me becoming dependent on the collar and my neck muscles atrophying, but seeing as how damned uncomfortable that thing is, that's not something _I_ think is going to happen. *grin*)

Anyway. Go freaking figure. Guess where that big fuel allowance is going for US??? That's right.... All those damned medical bills I've accrued this year! (Well, that and we're going to get our fuel fill-up for the year.)


The bulk of Tay's curriculum for the year STILL hasn't arrived. Her spanish program from Rosetta Stone did, and I need to get that installed on the computer today, but the rest (reading, writing, history, science, art) still isn't here. I just called the Raven program and left a message for our "Teacher" to talk to her about lighting a fire under the Curriculum Company's butt. *grin*

But, she's doing well with her math, having a good time with it and doing a heck of a lot better with it than she ever did with the Every Day Math through the public school. The fact is, she's actually looking foward to learning, this year.


Scott and Al (the FIL) leave tonight for moose hunting across the Chatanika River. They'll be gone for 8 days, unless they get something sooner.

I start my winter hours this weekend. Sunday is the first day of my working Sundays through Thursdays for the work-week, and I can hardly wait. (Except for the fact that I hope my neck is healed enough to NOT hurt while I'm working. *grin*)

Ok. I think that pretty well covers it. That latest dose of Vicodin, Valium and Ibuprofrin has kicked in, so I probably ought to get offline and go put in a movie and doze off. *wink* And I have no freaking idea what I'm going to do about dinner tonight, so I need to figure that out as well. *sigh*

Have a Blessed Day!

Wednesday, September 03, 2008

Favorite Proverbs and Words of Wisdom

I know we all grew up with them. The sayings our Moms and Dads would use, when they needed to give some advice and nothing but cliche would work.

Now I find myself doing the same with my daughter. In fact, one of the most frequently used is one that my Mom also frequently used:

"Two wrongs DON'T make a right!"

Years ago, I had a little daily calendar (the kind you tear of a page each day) that had a lot of great sayings, cliches, provebs, and direct words of wisdom. I kept the pages I liked, that meant something to me, and a I transcribed their message onto index cards, and posted them on my fridge. Several years later, I still have those index cards on my fridge to remind me now and again of the wisdom of those who've gone before me. (No, "Two wrongs don't make a right" isn't on index card, as I know that one by heart.)

Here are the sayings I keep close to me:

"Use what talents you possess: The woods would be very silent if no birds sang there except those that sang the best." -- Henry Van Dyke

"Be glad of life because it gives you the chance to love and to work and to play and to look at the stars." -- Henry Van Dyke

"Each man has a choice in life; he may approach it as a creator or critic, a lover or hater, a giver or taker" -- Author Unknown

"Make of yourself a light" -- Buddha

"All things you do, do with your might. Things done by half are never done right." -- Author Unknown

"Just because you CAN, doesn't mean you SHOULD!" -- Author Unknown.

"An it harm none, do as you will." --The Wiccan Rede

Some of these have been sticking strongly in my mind, lately. Esp. the "Two wrongs", the "Just because you can", the "an it harm none"..... More and more I see folks who think that think simply because they CAN do something, they should and they will.

My hubby and daughter, for example, are looking forward to the Richardson Hwy being turned (at least part of it) into a drag-strip this weekend. I think it's ridiculous. I see the price of fuel, the possibility that fuel is getting to be in short supply. The ecological damage done by burning fuel and reving motors and idling cars. My hubby sees the loud noise. He's not getting into racing right now (though he'd love to) because we can't afford it. But, he figures that if you can afford the gas, why not?

As my sister once posed on HER blog: Supposing you had the means to explode a planet. Nobody would be harmed. It wouldn't affect anybody, but you'd get to see a BIG bang. Should you?

I said NO. You shouldn't. Why???? If nobody's going to be hurt, if it won't cause the solar system to swing out of whack, why shouldn't you cause a really big explosion for the fun of it, if you so want?!?!

My feeling is that things are created for a purpose. I don't know, necessarily what that purpose is. But, as that other quote says, you may approach life as a creator or a critic, a lover or a hater, a giver or a taker. I would rather create, than destroy. But even in creating, we must be careful in what we do. It's one thing to create afghans, or sweaters, or scarves. It would be entirely another to create a planet just because I was suddenly given the means to do so. No matter how inconsequential it may seem at the point when it's done, we cannot tell what the end outcome will be. Destroying that planet now may deprive future generations of a home. Creating that planet now may increase the gravitational pull in our solar system by large enough percentage that it draws in unexpected asteroids or comets or whatever that our grandchildren 5-times-removed must deal with. No, it wouldn't hurt US, but it would hurt THEM!

My dad's expressed his opinion (much to my annoyance) that he'd rather make the most of the days he's got left, driving around the country, using lots of fuel and producing lots of emmissions with is truck, than reduce his "footprint" thereby hopefully helping to reduce the environmental damage that his grandchildren (his very REAL, and currently on this earth granddaughters) will have to deal with in their adulthood. (Or, their teen years, even.)

Again, it comes back to "Just because you CAN, doesn't mean you SHOULD!"

I understand that there are some limits to this thought. I'm not going to withdraw my application from the running for that job at NPB because somebody else may need the job. I'm not going to quit breathing so that micro-organisms who die with my every breath may live. I'm not going to quit eatting potatoes because potatoes are the root of a living plant and eatting the potatoes will kill the plant.

But, I'm not going to celebrate the Nascar lifestyle. I'm going to use the burning of massive amounts of fuel in this weekend's drag-races to discuss peak oil with my daughter. I'm going to continue attempting to grow our own food so that we can reduce the amount of store-bought and mass-produced food we must buy from large corporations.

And, I'm going to continue using these proverbs and words of wisdom in my life, and to repeat them over and over to my daughter till they hopefully take root in HER mind and soul.

Do you have favorite proverbs and words of wisdom you can share with me??? I'd love to hear the favorites of some of my favorite folks.


I still haven't heard anything back on the job. It appears there were 7 applicants total. No announcement has been made yet as to who got the job, but I also haven't heard anything from the borough or the woman who'd be my boss as to offering the job to me. So, it's still up in the air.


We still haven't received Tay's curriculum. So homeschooling has yet to commence.


Scott and his dad did not see any caribou this past weekend. They DID get to see two 50+ inch (rack-size, that is) bull moose competing for territory in a locking of the horns "event". Scott said it was incredible! They ALSO saw plenty of caribou tracks, lots of them fresh, but are of the opinion that the caribou were driven further in to the recesses of the territory by all the moose hunters moving INto the territory in preparation for opening day of moose season.

Scott and Al will themselves be heading out for a week, this coming weekend, in an attempt to get a moose. We're only trying for one moose this year, seeing as they also have till the end of Oct. (I think!) to try for a caribou down in Ferry. One moose would drastically reduce our need for store-bought meat. One moose and one caribou would set us up for a couple of years!!!! (Personally, I prefer the flavor of caribou. Though moose is good, and BOTH are better than beef!) We may also try getting half a pig again this year. We've yet to decide on that.

I think that pretty well covers it for now.

Have a Blessed Day!