Friday, August 29, 2008

Time to catch up

I have not written anything on the blog for 2 weeks and I have decided it is time to catch up. Here are some things that have happened:

Dave got a dog while I was in Mexico, a clone of Buddy. Not really. He brought home a Brittany Spaniel, female, 3 years old, by the name of Belle. She is pretty wild, as are most Brittany Spaniels, but we are all adjusting. Her life prior to moving to our house consisted of being in a crate or on a tether, but now she can run and run and run, and she does! Someday she will learn how to come when we call, but probably not any time real soon. She has the same coloring as Buddy, but is a lot smaller. Kitty Meow, our resident cat, was very worried at first and would run from Belle. But one day things changed. I could see it happen, actually. Meow looked at Belle, and did not bat an eye, or move a whisker. She growled and hissed and then when Belle reacted by backing off she got down on the floor and challenged Belle, and started chasing her around the house. It is pretty funny. She does not have any front claws so I don't think she can do any damage to Belle.

I have been working a lot of hours. School has started at Concordia, and with the beginning of the year we have a lot of new students getting jobs on campus. I have to set them up in our computerized payroll system, so it is mostly a lot of data entry. I worked 40 hours this week, and I am quite tired. I don't think I am fit for full-time work any more!

Austin had strep throat last week, so Babysitting Plan B was put into service, and Grandpa became the preferred day care option for most of the week. Dave had Monday off, and then Sam broke his arm. Right arm, just above the wrist. A splint was applied at the emergency room, and instructions given about how Sam needed to be very careful until a regular cast could be put on. Grandpa stepped up to the plate again and entertained Sam on Tuesday, Thursday and Friday. At 3:00 p.m. today the crucial time arrived when it was decided that the arm was healing OK, and it could be casted (cast?) Hmmm. Anyway, Sam did not have to have it "reset" which would have meant anesthesia and pain, and anxiety for parents and grandparents (thank you Jesus). He got a bright red cast. Go Big Red! and is happy that he can run around and play and won't have to worry about his arm for a while. Three weeks, I guess.

On Tuesday evening I went to a "Premier Jewelry" party at Liz's house. It was fun to try on the jewelry and hear all the tips the consultant had to offer. I found out that I should be wearing 7-12 pieces of jewelry every day. You can count your earrings as two pieces. I have done this for a few days now, and it is kind of fun. I ordered some jewelry at the party, but I have been experimenting with the jewelry that I have now.

On Thursday night Liz's friend Tina had a Mary Kay "Color Insider" party, so I had to brush up on my MK product knowledge and presentation skills. I was not real happy with my "performance" and I think if I am going to resurrect my Mary Kay career I will need to go to some training meetings again.

There's probably a lot more a regular blog poster would write about, but that is all for now for this blogger.

Friday, August 15, 2008

Welcoming committee

Here are Bird's dogs: Puppy (or Poppy) the cocker spaniel at the bottom left; Blanca, to her right; Chewie, above Blanca, and Amiga, at the top. Bird and Smokey found Blanca and Amiga on a beach in Mexico and adopted them a few years ago. Chewie came next. He wandered into their yard as a puppy with a gash running along his spine from one end to the other. He still has a scar all the way down the center of his back. Bird has always wanted a smaller dog, so when Puppy turned up at the Vet clinic where she volunteers she brought her home as a "foster care dog." But she ended up staying. Usually the dogs are not allowed in the new house, but Puppy has found a way to squeeze through the fence, so she will turn up underfoot now and then. Chewie will watch for a while and then find a place where he can maneuver through and Blanco and Amiga will not be far behind. When they all come racing through the house it reminds me of the scene from "A Christmas Story" where the Bumpus Hounds come running through the kitchen and grab the roast turkey!

Monday, August 11, 2008

On top of the world

As you drive Mexico Highway 1 (the Transpenisular Highway) you cross the peninsula back and forth from west to east and east to west a few times. The Sierra Nevada mountain range runs north and south, the length of Baja California and Baja California Sur, so when you drive east to west or west to east you go up, up, up and down, down down, often on a very curvy road. Sometimes, though, you seem to be at the top of the world, and all you can see is more mountain peaks, but you feel like you are at the top and any direction you look is down.
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Saturday, August 9, 2008

More "on the road"



I think almost every Mexican town we drove through had a town square. Here are two examples: first is the square at Tecate, which is the border crossing town where we entered Mexico. It was a busy place and quite pretty.

The second picture was taken quite a way further south in the town of San Iganacio, after we had crossed into the state of Baja California Sur. Again, we are in the town square, and I asked Bird to take my picture by this huge tree. At the opposite end of the square some people had set up a stand to sell plastic baskets--things you might use in your kitchen or laundry room for storage or serving food. It was the middle of the day and some folks were sleeping on the benches, or just hanging around the square and visiting. They may have been tourists, since San Ignacio is home to an old spanish Mission of the same name.
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Thursday, August 7, 2008

On the road . . in Colorado and Utah

Bird and I drove on I-70 from Denver until it met up with I-15, so we saw a lot of countryside in Colorado and Utah. The scenery in Colorado is beautiful, but sadly you can see hundreds of dead pine trees, a consequence, I suppose, of the pine beetle blight. I wonder what will happen as those trees begin to fall and become kindling. I can imagine there will be huge forest fires in the years to come.

We had 12 dead and dying pine trees removed from our yard yesterday. It only took a few hours to cut them down and remove them, and now we have large empty spaces in our yard. Fortunately, you cannot see our house from the road because we have cedar trees remaining as our wind break. If you have watched Al Gore's movie An Inconvenient Truth you may remember that he mentioned the pine beetle and blight and how we are going to lose millions of pine trees as the pine beetle moves into areas where previously they would die out in the winter. I would agree that it is pretty inconvenient.

The landscape changed as we got into Utah and here a few pictures taken as we drove by at 75 miles per hour. I definitely want to spend some more time in
Utah and see some more of these beautiful rock formations.

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Wednesday, August 6, 2008

More Mexico trip stuff

Ben's is a little restaurant in Green River, Utah, and it serves really good Mexican food, cooked by a nice Mexican cook. Bird and I stopped here to eat on July 21, the first day of our five-day drive to La Ribera. We were tired and hungry and the towns were few and far between, so when we saw it we decided to stop. As we were getting out of Bird's car an older couple came out of the restaurant and the gentleman said, "You will not be sorry you stopped to eat here. It is really good." And he was right.
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Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Roadside Memorial

A common sight as you travel on Mexico Highway 1 is the Roadside Memorial. This picture was taken between La Ribera and Santa Cruz, Baja California Sur and is a pretty good example. Most are quite a bit smaller, but some are even larger than this one. They may commemorate a person who has died at this spot, or it may be a shrine to honor a saint. We saw hundreds of them as we drove the transpenisular highway.
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