Wednesday, June 13, 2018

A View from the other side Number 3

My Dear Friend : I am trying very hard, to know my place. To maintain quiet out of humility and respect. But sometimes, in the course of the last 24 hours, I feel like if I do not speak, the stones themselves will cry out! My dear friend! My thoughts today revolve on a common theme and I will not deny them. Dang it my friend. You have managed to cross over to the other side before me. The wonders that you now see! The amazingness of it all! My dear friend what do you see? What is your experience today! I know that in your heart you would turn and look at us and desperately want to explain it all! And share it! And we would love to have you do so! As we see eternity as only 2D, you see it now, at the very least, in 3-D. Suddenly all the things which confound us, make sense to you now, and you would have us know. Alas, we must wait. As ever, you still are unchanged...the adventuring childlike explorer.

Tuesday, June 12, 2018

View from the other side number 2

My dear friend, Mark. Even though it has scarcely been 36 hours since you have crossed over, I am still compelled to wonder what you are seeing right now. The things you are experiencing an eternity right now. I continue to think about how much you would love to communicate to us all what you are experiencing. I try so hard, my brother, to keep silent and to know my place. It has been a terrible Grand conflagration, so many people speaking and saying, and saying and speaking, about your passing. Without any regard for the sensibilities of your family. I try so hard and say nothing, because I know how it is to be in this in between time. So soon between the crossing over and the personal found timing to speak one's own piece, regarding one's own beloved and personal dearly Departed. Things being said or only to be made by your family. And yet there are many who speak, as though they know, I do not wish to participate in that sort of thing. And yet my friend, as you know, I am alight with the thoughts of you adventuring into eternity. And such an adventure it must be! And I know so very much how you would love to communicate the depths of Truth to the rest of us who you love and our friends with. And as much as I treasure the knowledge of that being your heart's desire, there is also a part of me that knows, dude, if people didn't get it from Jesus when he said it, they probably aren't going to get it from you my brother. Makes me sad. And yet maybe, they will get it from you. Everyday is a new day and there is always New Hope. So yes. I am going to camp on this truth! Suffice to say, I do miss you my brother. I will see you when I get there.

View from the other side, number 1.

Dang it, my friend. You got to the other side before I did. As I Ponder this I wonder what wonderful sites and experiences you are having right now, that you wish you could tell us. I wish you could too, my friend. I wish I was seeing your goofy grin right now, the happy joy, telling us all about it.

Monday, May 21, 2018

Metolius - Epilogue

SO many thoughts.

- Learned a lot.
Learned that there is SO much more to be learned!
(Isn't that always the way?)

- Learned that the two SCARIEST people, are actually quite approachable.
And I am not the sort of person who is easily intimidated. Ask anyone.
("Screaming Artillery Man (tm)"  still remains on the Scary List.  ( I wonder what Santa thinks of that?)

 - Saw a sheep nearly worshipped. She was hailed as the "Battle Lamb".
It was suggested that a standard be created in commemoration.

- Learned that I am far too willing to take some one at their word or at face value.
(Not always such a good thing.)

- It took me a fair few minutes to recognize that Dub was out-bidding me for Kelly Brown's item for sale, mainly as a service to Kelly.  (I am on to your tactics now, sir!) ;o)

- Got a new game plan figured out for teaching, and the use of the "Glorious Demonstration Fly" in the Confederate Encampment.  Looking VERY much forward to Powerland because of it.

- After having purged "un-needed supplies", I have discovered that I can purge even more.
(Need to find a period, stretcher/embalming table with handles to replace the heavier model I already have.  Should have a wicker/caned insert in the center. Ya know.  If any of you come across one in your travels.  It has to be sturdy though, because it may be used to carry a truly injured person off the field.)

- I am no longer hauling garments for people, unless they actually show up.

- After the arthritic agony of this weekend, I will permit myself some proper (if farby) footwear for after the public goes home. Ain't nobody got time for pain like this.

- Many thanks to the Kens.
A healing time was had.
I was reminded of my favorite horse, now long gone. I guess I stuffed that memory, as it hurts.   Smelling the hay through your horses nostrils, a sweet incense that comes forth like incense goes up to heaven. Thank you for letting us come and spend a little bit of time there.  Being sniffed.  Scratching haltered heads.  Sharing carrots.  It was a big deal.  Thank you.

- Meeting "The Tims" and watching them cut each other down in person.  Such comedy.


- Late at night, being roused from the brink of sleep by a man yelling,
"SHUT UP! SHUT UP!  I'VE HAD ENOUGH!  SHUT UP,  G$%   D#@*   It!!!"
Gee, I wonder who he could have been yelling at?
*clumsy stumbling and clanking sounds, passing the tent soon followed.

- The weather was surprisingly good - this is two years in a row now.
I originally was certain that we were going to have a rainy bluster, but I was wrong.
Now that I think about it, late May is truly the transition between Winter and Summer. Dunno why I was surprised at decent weather.

- I don't know why I bring so much food.  OR any.  I rarely eat at such events. What a waste. In the future, I should just bring trail mix and Mountain House.
(And hide a Keurig in the tent, run off of a power supply.  Yes, I can already hear the outcry. )

- I honestly don't know why so many reenactors seem to think this event is not worth coming to.
It is THE MOST beautiful, picturesque setting imaginable.  Really, it is only two -three hours from most anywhere in the valley.  And there are folks who come from further away - 6 hours.  So people who whine about a 2-3 hour drive - well I am sorry, you do not have my sympathy, ya princess.  You are just missing out.  Big time.

- The radio interview was terrifying, but the reporter really did an excellent job with the final product!
She is to be commended!  Thank you David Banks for setting it up!

-Thank you David Banks, for a whole lotta stuff.  In fact, thank you for most of it! Thank you for your time, energy, enthusiasm, financial, janitorial, set-up and strike skills, and you are a master at engaging the public at parades.  (You and Matt Cleman on that score).

- Kelly Cleman, dang girl! We did not get a chance to play Whist!  Now that we have a new demo tent set up, we will find a lot more time for proper socializing, so I am looking forward to truly getting to hang out with you at Pwerland and beyond.

- We got safety tested this weekend, which will allow us to participate in more "shenanigans", such as running around screaming and crying, "Their killing' us all!!!"  We were unexpectedly presented with an opportunity directly after completing the test.  Canonn fire was heard in the Civilian camp. Screaming ensued, and little girls were injured. They got to be carried away by larger girls to be tended by the medic.  They later "died", and wailing and weeping commenced after the battle.  They later asked if they could please be allowed to die again.  We had to tell them, "not today dearie, some one else gets a turn to die now."
As it turned out, it was a minister.
And might I just point out, from a theatrical perspective, the timing on that whole display up through the shooting of the  pastor was impeccable.  As a result there was a collective gasp of shock from all who watched it.  Well done!
We were also able to put our 30 ft rules in to play during the second battle on Sunday when the Union came right bloody into the Civilian camp. Darn those guys!


- Thank you to my Scout for making the trip over to hang with your old miserable mum and with your other Scout and Kristi, PJ and of course, the glorious ponies.  For me, I think that was the most profound moment of the entire weekend.  I love that you always make an effort to come out to the reenactments - no matter where they are held, even if it is for just a day. I am glad that we could at least share in the Fort Stevens experience, even if it was only once.  It was indeed memorable.
**We need to get MacKenzie to attend an event with us.  Can you imagine the comedy?!

- It was a wonderful way to open the new season!

- And that's all I have to say for now.

PS: And ...flamingoes.

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Thundering Spring

It's a good day to come home from work in May. When the day has been hot, and the great fluffy thunder clouds are on the air. You've watered your plants and they smell green now. You can smell the ozone from the thunderheads. This is a good day to come home to. And sit. In the garden. Soft winds begin to sing in the chimes. Waiting, for the sky's mighty voice.

Tuesday, May 8, 2018

Stuff to do and see, think, be and feel. And eat.

Dishes I want - Calamity Ware

Victory Rolls, a simple cute - Hair Do

People were smarter than us - Stupid and modern

Swim Caps - hairdo protection of yester-year

Potato Rose - A potato by any other name would smell as...?

Om Nom Noms - Cheese Steak Crescent Ring

Yummy's - Egg Clouds Recipe (Scroll down past the ad)

Ooey Gooey Butter Cake - the best of sweet and savoury

Handy Drawer Shelf - Place to store pet supplies?

Making Life Easier - For your Elderly Cat

The Musical Priest - At a wedding

YARR! - Things to see in Oregon

Healthy - Low carb dippers

Beer Me - Episode 1

Excellent Fail - Bounce Off

Pet Safety - People Food that Dogs can't eat

Back in the Good Ol' Day - A Vintage Music Video

How To Apply Make-Up  - Not

Spidee - Can Dance

Cook An Omelette - In a bag

More Things with Drawers - Kats

Singing with Friends - In Public Places

Grow Your Food - Again

Ice Cream - With No Machine (Flavour is optional)

Kyoot Kittehs - Meow

Monday, May 7, 2018

Using internal combustion.

It's amazing, the number of things that I will conquer successfully once I get pissed off enough to do it. I am practically capable of anything. Sewing, carpentry, you name it!

Wednesday, May 2, 2018


I might be a smoker. Oh no, I do not smoke cigarettes or anything remotely 420 related. But I do love incense. Unfortunately I have a cat with asthma. So for eight months out of the year I cannot enjoy incense. My particular favorite is the traditional nag Champa. So it is with Glee that I await the coming of the spring where I can have decent enough whether to sit outside and work in my garden and burn some incense Outdoors. So because of all the chemicals and ingredients in nag Champa, I'm sure that qualifies me as a smoker.

Saturday, April 28, 2018

No Cheese?

I have shocked myself. I cannot believe that I did not bring any cheese on this camping trip with me. Certainly that has to be a first.

Wednesday, April 18, 2018

You can't "DO" Relationships

A friend of mine posted something regarding relationships the other day and it got me thinking.

It was all about doing this or that to please your significant other.

Out of 10 items listed, only 3 of them really had anything to do with relationship.
It made me think.  
Isn’t that how we are as humans?  We “DO” relationships.  
That is the problem.  
A relationship is an evolving, morphing thing.  A thing to “BE” in, as opposed to “DO”.

To BE present, to BE hearing, to BE thinking, and most importantly, simply to BE with.

It also made me think about the Church.
The Church tends to DO relationship as well.
With it’s God and with each other.
We often think, “If I do this, and don’t do that, then God and I are good.”
And with each other, “You did this, so you are acceptable, and you did that so you are unacceptable.”

I think the main messages of the Bible are that we are ALL imperfect, God wants a living breathing relationship with us, and this “relationship thing” is something to be worked on for all of our lives.

Todays hair...

Courtesy of Medusa.

Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Women are not equally valuable???

So first off, I can't even believe that Trump literally rolled back equal pay for women.
I was never an Obama fan.  Nor was I a Bush fan. But this! This is ridiculous. This is offensive.

So I mentioned on FB today that I couldn't believe this was happening and that I was speechless.

A Christian friend of mine actually said to me,:

"God works in ways we don't always understand, we don't always know what's best for us. Try to be a the adults in the room, and avoid profane attacks on what you can't understand."

You think that Trump is a Godly man?
You really think there is a valid reason to deny women equal pay?

And what do you mean by telling me:  " on what you can't understand."

What I can't understand???

I do not believe that this choice of Trumps is Godly.

I am incensed by your lack of undestanding and compassion, and sense of fairness.

Frankly, I am stunned by your willingness to see the innocent treated wrongly and abused in order to stick by your candidate so that you don't lose face.

Monday, April 9, 2018

Travel Trailer

This is a good week! Getting my wee little travel trailer already for the season! First destination on the docket? Winter quarters in Scotts Mills next weekend travel time, Friday the 13th! Can't even wait!

Friday, April 6, 2018

The first signs of spring in Central

So today is April 5th. And I can't even believe it but this afternoon I am sitting on my patio. The weather is 70 degrees, with very high overcast with the sun peeking through. It is warm and the birds are tweeting. And I feel I can say with certainty, despite the snow that will surely come between now and the end of April, spring is surely nearby.

Thursday, April 5, 2018

Processing the past through some one elses dementia, part 2

After I left the hospital, I began to feel some of that old anger come back to me.

I had several thoughts on the drive home.
Up until now, when ever I saw his girlfriend (in a way that I had to interact with her)  I would say to her "I am so glad he has you in his life", and I did tell her at one point early on,  when things were really awkward and she was having a difficult time dealing with us, I said to her at one point when we were alone, (actually she had a friend there) " I just want you to know that I do not bear any ill will toward you or Stu.  I am thankful that he has you in his life, and wish for you to feel welcomed. Please know this is the absolute truth, from the bottom of my heart."

After my intereaction with Stu in the hospital yesterday, I thoght on my way home, "Screw him. If the stories I've heard about her from others are true, then she is as horribly manipulative as he is, and they effing deserve each other.  So now I can say with less compassion and more anger, "yeah, you guys deserve each other."

This is not a good state of mind for me to be in.
But it came flooding in so fast and completely that it makes me think I still have things to process.

When I got home, I shared the experience with my excellent friend of 30+ years.  She said a profound thing to me that I have neverheard her say:

Well, Michelle, honestly I've always thought that Stu was a 'woman hater' ".

As I pondered it through the night, and looked over our life together, all the demeaning, belittling, manipulative, game playing cruel things he did and said suddenly made sense.  It is as if his current condition has stripped away all of his filters and his abilities to carry out his lifelong facades.  He is now living openly, the hate that he has had for me all of our married life.  It is both refreshing and sad. All of the years he presented these wonderful facades of the adoring husband and father, perfectly Christian with his family in line. When I divorced him, he was no longer able to present that perfect facade. I imagine that once that occurred, his rage REALLY kicked in. You know, underneath the surface.

So now, it is on me to decide what I am going to do with these feelings.
I was awake in the middle of the night, chewing on all of this and praying, "Lord, help me to see things right and not stay in this place."

After this night of prayer, and a little bit of sleep I woke up with a sense of peace and freedom.
I have decided that, other than to be a support to my children and extended family and eventually visiting friends, I do not need to see Stuart anymore. Particularly not at the hospital, unless he really requests it, which I doubt will happen.

This leads me to some other questions:

1).   We have many longtime and very dear shared friends.

If his hate carries on unfiltered like this, do I give up going to our annual bocce ball and New Years Eve get togethers?  Since the divorce we have been well able to navigate these events remaining cordial to each other and getting along for the sake of those friendships.  If he starts ranting and calling me the 'C' word or other things, it will get really bad for the other friends attending the events. But I don't want to lose those friends. And these two events are usually the only times I get to see them all together as they all live in Eugene and Portland.

So this is a thing that concerns me. And it's all hypothetical really.  So why borrow trouble I guess.

2).   How will it be at family events now?  Even though we are divorced we still get together with the in-laws and kids and cousins for Thanksgiving, Christmas and Easter.  How's that gonna work now?

Anyway, there it is for now.

Processing the past through someone elses dementia, Part 1

I was taken back at least 13 years ago yesterday afternoon.

All of the reasons I got my divorce came flooding back to me as I stood inside the door of Stuart's hospital room.

A little backstory:
Stuart, as many of you know, has suffered a terrible form of sepsis.  The infection is in his blood, liver, lungs and brain.  There are 20-30 absesses, each the size of a dime, in his brain.  They are trying to administer anitbiotics through a pic line.  He is expected to be hospitalized for two months.

He spends his days in and out of dementia.  Some times his symptoms almost seem like they resemble Tourette's Syndrome. When he was first admitted he was violently flailing, striking himself and those around him.  They restrained him, wrapped his hands, and sedated him. He was swearing beyond profusely at anyone within striking distance.  He is still in swearing mode - which is odd for him.  Anyway, all of this backstory to say, he can't be held accountable for the things that he does and says right now.

So, I have avoided going in to his room, because I know he is fragile and edgy. I do not know if seeing me or hearing my voice will cause him stress in his current condition and that is the LAST thing he needs.  That and his girlfriend is often there and I don't want to cause awkwardness.
Just because you are divorced from a person does not necessarily mean that you hate them.  Heck I was married to the guy for 28 bloody long years. The last 13 of which were pure hell and I do confess that I HATED him during that time. But that was then and this is now.  I certainly bear him or his girlfriend no ill will.   So when I go to the hospital, I stay in the waiting room.  This way I can be there to support my kids when they come to town and visit him.

Blake got permission from his employer to come down to be with his dad for the week.  Blake has been sleeping every single night in the hospital, in the recliner chair next to his bed.  The boy looks rough, fragile and bleary eyed.

Tuesday I went to pick up his laundry and take it home to wash for him.
Blake said, "Hey mom, why don't you come stand in the doorway for a sec and say 'hi' to dad?"
I said, "well ok, if you think it won't upset him?"
Blake answered, "it should be fine."
So I stood in the the doorway and waved and said Hi Stu.
Stu looked my way and weakly said, "hi" back.

When I brought Blake's laundry back to him on Thursday, I again stood in the door and waved and said "Hi".  Stu did not look up.  Blake said to him, "Hey dad, do you want to turn your head and say hi to mom?"  Stuart frowned and said, "No!"

Which was fine.
And yet, it brought back a FLOOD of anger from years gone by.

To be continued...

Wednesday, April 4, 2018

Lake season.

The season is so close I can hardly stand it. The time to be on the water whether it's paddling the High Lakes or whether it's hitting the Estuary and The Game Preserve at the coast and paddling that. The time to be on the water is near. So close and yet so far.

When will any of us learn?

Sometimes we say, as parents of grown children, "When will these kids ever learn?"

But I would counter this by saying to ourselves, "When will WE ever learn?"

Learn that sometimes (oftentimes?) it is more important to let our kids suffer and hurt and experience the agonies of life rather than to offer them the advice, wisdom and tools to navigate through or around such suffering.

To really learn something, some people just have to figure it out, no matter how painful the process is.

Wednesday, March 21, 2018

The Quaint Art of Embroidery

As many of you who know our family are aware, we have an...interesting...sense of humor; (aka quirky, inappropriate, edgy).

My daughter has taken up the quaint art of embroidery, and for my birthday, she made me the lovely wall art which I have hung proudly in my kitchen:

Tuesday, March 20, 2018

The Prayer Chain

What a terrible lesson.
What a sad eye-opening insight.

Just because friends love you and care for you does not give them the right to share your traumas and trials around the community, under the "guise of a prayer request."

No.  What REAL love would do, would be to pray fervently, knowing that God knows the situation even if we don't have all the details.  Love would humbly wait for the updates and permission to share, from either the patient or the family.

The Prayer Chain - mind you, not the one at the place I work.  The one at the place I work is comprised of thoughtful, humble, people with a patient desire to see God work.  They do not gossip about what comes across the prayer chain, nor do they speak about it outside of the prayer chain. They do not share information without express permission from the person to be prayed for, or that person's family.

  ~   ~   ~   ~   ~
There was a man, a friend of the patient.  As soon as he heard about the potential injury/illness he took it upon himself to alert the community.  This was even before the family knew.  It was a breach of privacy - even though it came from a loving, well meaning heart.  The immediate family was still trying to reach the rest of the family, this is before the family has had an opportunity to speak with the Doctors / patient or get the pertinent information, in order to be able to even share an accurate prayer request. One of the family members saw it before the family had a chance to tell them.  It ended up being kind of bad.  (Ya think?!)

This man crossed a boundary, stepped out of line, and refused to recognise that he had carried out an insensitive, rude act.

One thing I have learned, both from serving as a missionary and working in a church: everyone has the right to pray. No one has the right to share private information, no matter what their loving heartfelt desire is.  It is just not right.

  ~   ~   ~   ~   ~

So at this point, I don't imagine that I would ever share any requests for prayer with any church's prayer chain.  Particularly in this small town, as people are too quick to talk and there seem to be several who need to "feel they are a part of the drama" and make it their own.

I am so done with that.

Saturday, January 20, 2018

Dementia Chronicle, Episode 1 : A beginning?

As many of you who've known me for a long time already know, Altzheimers runs on my mom's side of the family fairly regularly.

Having served alongside my dad through the years of providing care to my mom, I am hyper sensitive to any little thing, any small aberration in my own thoughts and abilities.

Rather than squirrel away uncomfortable thoughts, I decided that I should blog them.

Perhaps it will be known that I merely suffer from the decline that we as women go through when experiencing menopause.

Most recently notable, ( and alarming to me) is my observation that I can no longer type as I used to.
Already in this post, I have had to correct typos 5 times.  This is becoming a typical occurrence during the last year. Also, my spelling is less accurate that it once was.  And grammar.  Dare I confess that I actually had a brain fart regarding where the apostrophe should go in "Priests" - vs- "Priest's"?

For ME - THIS should not happen. I am a proud grammar Nazi.

My own mother contracted Altzheimers at an early age.  We believe she had the start of it in her early 50's.  She died from it when she was 61.  My mother was an atheletic, outgoing, left brained, witty, mathematical person. She did not engage in poor eating habits, excessive alcohol or other obvious unhealthful activity.

I am now 50+.  My hyper sensitivity to the possibility of getting this grows with every typo, spelling mistake etc. Where did I put my keys? Again? I thought I already fed the cats?  When did I change the fish's water?

It is also possible that I have a tendency to take on a great deal of things at once.  My brain rarely shuts off - even at night. Example: I got 4 hours of sleep last night.  Decent sleep for me is 6 hours.  I have needed 7-9 in the past.

So I don't know.

This is the first post in what I hope never becomes a series, for me.

The Dementia Chronicles.

Thursday, January 18, 2018

It's only Lincoln City...

...but I'll take it.

Especially now tht some of my kids are able to get away and meet up with me down there.

I need to find some big rubber boots so I can stomp around in the storms.

Wednesday, November 1, 2017

Facebook Users and Their "News"

We are the reason we got into this problem in the first place: we made it easy for the Russians because we, as a general population, are stupid. 

If you are considering sharing or posting a "News " article, make sure it is from an actual News Agency or Source.  Not something like "The Daily Mail", or "The Daily Caller", or "Huffington Post" etc. Did you know that such "News" sources, are not even really that?  They are predominantly opinion blogs with a host of contributors.  They are the Equivalent of the National Enquirer that you see in grocery store check out news displays. The majority of "News" that facebook friends are sharing and re-posting is this sort of crap.  It is BS people. Not news.  

When you are "Sharing News" please make sure that it IS actual news.  Most of it is just opinions. The kind that you agree with.  And it is perfectly fine to share your opinions.  But please do not share it as "News". Please double check the source and if it is not knowably legit, then state that it is merely an opinion that you agree with. These so-called "News" stories are presented to you on facebook as though they are legit and they are not. Please don't spread this stuff  on the rest of social media as though it were "News". It's not. Please do your research before posting this stuff.  It just makes you look like an imbecile and it stirs up strife between other imbeciles on facebook who WANT to believe these stories are true, for what ever reason.

If your "News" has an inflammatory title or subject matter, and is not reflected on other, more legitimate news resources, then odds are great that it is not actually news.
More legitimate news resources would be things like NBC, CNN, FOX, ABC, CBS or your local affiliate - granted they are not perfect either.  We as a population, are such lazy thinkers.  We happily gobble up any tittilating bit of data that piques our interest or speaks to our biases and opinions, with out ever questioning the validity of the report.

We gobble up what ever crappy pablum someone wants to feed us. 

They don't even have to cram it down our throats.
We gorge ourselves on it of our own accord.
We are stupid.

We are the problem.

Example: Why would I blame MacDonalds.
If I get fat because I choose to eat there so often?
This is the same concept.
Maybe we would all be better off if we paid as much attention to what we are putting in our heads, as we do to what we are putting into our bodies?


Monday, October 16, 2017

Flying Back From Providence

Flying back from Providence.
In the dark, waiting for dawn.
Below. In the underneath.
Darkened neighborhoods, districts
Outlined by faint street light perimeters.
Occasional mist obscures.
Then out of the sweet, quiet dark of predawn
It juts out
Like an ice pick in the eye.
What the HELL is that.
Red, severing light.
Oh, the neighbors must hate THAT.
It can be seen, viewed with PAIN, from over 13,000 feet.
It can be seen from bloody outer space.
It looks like some one's back patio sliding door.
Two brazen glowing red rectangles
Lying flat.
Staring boldly upward.
Hell's patio door.

The cities.
And out of the dark
Looms a giant spider.
Exoskeleton intersections,  wreathed in light, delicate and fragile.
Like wisps of spun, gold light.
She is attended by her mates
Who gaze upon her from the outskirts of her web.
She slowly creeps toward them.
Until she swallows each one. Slowly.

First hub.
First landing of the day
Soon to come.
The dawn reveals the Quintessential Symbol of Winter's Comfort:
The Mitten.
Not pale with snow, yet.
But green, dotted with villages. Tree lines and fences
I look down on a motherboard of agriculture.
And now, the clouds.

How the hell does it stay in the sky.
This culvert pipe with wings.
God only knows.
And for THAT
I am thankful.

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Dip Cone

I smell a dip cone.
Smell it?
How the hell can anybody SMELL a dip cone?
They have no smell!

I think this means that I am meant to go and get one, now that a Dairy Queen has been constructed in our small town.


Go Read David Thorne

For those who have to hire new employees.
You will appreciate this:  Ten Stupid Questions

Tuesday, September 12, 2017


You are my friend.
I rarely see you.
I invite you to go do things like kayak, or go to the coast or to come up to the campsite for a day or even to stay over if you wish.
There is always an excuse.
I understand that you are busy.
With your family.
With your elderly parents.
I know how that is because I have gone through all of that myself.

So I guess I never really thought that much about it other than it was always a big massive bummer.
Until now.
But now, I see how things are:

All the times of your saying, "Yes. Lets go do this," only to have you change your mind at the last minute, leaving me holding the bag, to go and do the adventure alone. Again and again and again.

It seems that you can go camping with a mutual friend at the drop of a hat, but not when I invite you.
It seems that you can go hang out at the lake or go fishing at the drop of a hat, but not when I invite you.

Even so, it was a bit of a wake up call for me.
Let me just say, it didn't start with the Civil War.
But that was kind of the Last Straw.

I suddenly realized:  It is me.
I don't know what I ever did.  I don't know what I do.
It must just be how I am.

And now it feels like you know,
that what transpired has come down to the equivalent of an assault on our friendship.
And you are back peddling.
Trying to make it up, as if to say, "See? Everything is good, right? We're all good...?"
And you are trying to save face in order to keep some semblance of peace.
You have recently taken to inviting me to go here, or do this and have a beer.
Even though we've been friends for many many years,
that's not something you normally do:
Call me, to arrange to hang out.
Not unless it's with the group.

I never really thought about that fact before. Until just now.

I know that you are a peacable person, and would even throw someone under the bus to maintain some concept of unity. But ultimately that doesn't work. Because some one got thrown under the bus. I've been that person before, and I've watched you do it to some one else.  Just to keep the peace.  To avoid confrontation.

In the things that have transpired above, I can sadly say that, unfortunately, there has been a breach of trust. For me anyway.

The words you say, I no longer know if they are legit or just trying to maintain the peace.

And I don't like how this has felt.  I've tried for years to not take it personally when ever there is an excuse.  And I never did take it personally.  But now, after what has transpired, indicated above, it makes me wonder, retro-actively.

I don't like feeling this way, and I fear for the possible loss of what I thought was an excellent friendship.

Sadly, all of the "trying to make it up" out of the blue, suddenly, only makes it worse.

I need to have a foundation for trust and that foundation has been put to serious question.

Don't push me.  I need time to get over this hurt.


Thursday, August 24, 2017

Rendering the life changing into insignificance

Imagine you are in  your house, in your yard, driving to work, or on errands.  Doing mundane daily things.  You begin to have these thoughts - alarming thoughts - that come in to your head more and more frequenlty as the days go on. Thoughts with such strength and undeniable force that you finally recognise it as the voice of God.

This voice is telling you CRAZY things!  The world sucks.  It tells you it is finished with humanity.
tTe voice tells you that all of creation is going to be destroyed in a cataclysm...well, except for you.

Uhm,  right there,  that's kind of a big life meddling issue all by itself.  Just deal with that concept.
How do you live your life wondering, "is this real?",  "Am I crazy?"

But now add to that, a growing, unshakeable sense that these things are actually true.
And now... deal with that revelation.

If this weren't enough to put you in the rubber room by now, let's ponder this:

In addition to all of the above, imagine that voice that you have finally come to identify as the voice of God, telling you to build a big-ass boat and fill it with food and every kind of animal that he sends to you.

Imagine going through your days, with the mail man laughing at "the weird shed" you've built in your yard.  You neighbor trying to casually ask, "so, what's this project I see you working on? Some kinda ADU or something?"

You tell him the truth.

People who know you are suddenly staying the heck away from you, ya freak.


Funny that we, as humanity, have relegated this extremely stressful situation down to a simple children's bible story.

This is how we are.

Tuesday, August 22, 2017


I'll never get there.
But thank you that you gave my kids such a great time.
I find great comfort in looking at their photos.

Saturday, May 27, 2017

One Act Plays: Now You're Talking

So we had the one acts last month. They were originally supposed to have happened in February however with all the snow, they were postponed until April.

Photos courtesy of Jerry Baldock of Outlaws Photography.

This is the play I directed "The Kindness of Strangers" which was a one woman show starring Vicki Kouns -  although in these photos, it was dress rehearsal and my actress had not gotten back from her Florida trip yet, so I stood in for her.

The next round of photos is from the play I was in, "All Sales are  Final" written by local playwright Larry Anderson.  Cast mates are Shawn O'Hearn, Rhonda Townsend Schantz and Dyut Fetrow.

Civil War photos: Round Two

Local photographer Jerry Baldock took several photos up at the event.

His watermark is so STRONG though, its almost difficult to even see the images.
Even so, you can find them at this link:

Thursday, May 25, 2017

Civil War Pics - Round One

This past weekend we all went up to participate in the Civil War Reenactment held by the North West Civil War Council at the House on the Metolius in Camp Sherman.

By "we all" I mean, myself, Kristi, Patti Jo, Scout and Scout.

Here are the first round of pics, courtesy of Kristi:

Scout.  ¥ou can see the Union Encampment in the background.

 Scout and Victoria watching the dancers.

 Scout doing something on the way back from the dance.

 Again Scout does something.

 Scout rolling around on the ground.

 Scout being inappropriate as usual.

 Scout Miller, asleep.

 Scout lays on the ground, calling for Steven or Heidi to pick her up in the shuttle.

 More of Scout being inappropriate.

 Scout and Scout walking that beastly long road.

Patti Jo helps a family looking for some personal effects of their missing soldier.

More to follow, I'm sure.

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Drowning - it's quiet. No splashing

Drowning is a quiet affair. Most of the time people don't even know that some one near them is drowning. It only takes 20-60 seconds to drown. For an adult. Less time for children.

The Instinctive Drowning Response kicks in automatically. The drowning person has no ability to do anything else.

It looks like this:

1 “Except in rare circumstances, drowning people are physiologically unable to call out for help. The respiratory system was designed for breathing. Speech is the secondary or overlaid function. Breathing must be fulfilled before speech occurs.

2 Drowning people’s mouths alternately sink below and reappear above the surface of the water. The mouths of drowning people are not above the surface of the water long enough for them to exhale, inhale, and call out for help. When the drowning people’s mouths are above the surface, they exhale and inhale quickly as their mouths start to sink below the surface of the water.

3 Drowning people cannot wave for help. Nature instinctively forces them to extend their arms laterally and press down on the water’s surface. Pressing down on the surface of the water permits drowning people to leverage their bodies so they can lift their mouths out of the water to breathe.

4 Throughout the Instinctive Drowning Response, drowning people cannot voluntarily control their arm movements. Physiologically, drowning people who are struggling on the surface of the water cannot stop drowning and perform voluntary movements such as waving for help, moving toward a rescuer, or reaching out for a piece of rescue equipment.

From beginning to end of the Instinctive Drowning Response people’s bodies remain upright in the water, with no evidence of a supporting kick. Unless rescued by a trained lifeguard, these drowning people can only struggle on the surface of the water from 20 to 60 seconds before submersion occurs.”

This doesn’t mean that a person that is yelling for help and thrashing isn’t in real trouble—they are experiencing aquatic distress. Not always present before the Instinctive Drowning Response, aquatic distress doesn’t last long—but unlike true drowning, these victims can still assist in their own rescue. They can grab lifelines, throw rings, etc.

Look for these other signs of drowning when persons are in the water:

5 Head low in the water, mouth at water level

6 Head tilted back with mouth open

7 Eyes glassy and empty, unable to focus

8 Eyes closed

9 Hair over forehead or eyes

10 Not using legs—vertical

11 Hyperventilating or gasping

12 Trying to swim in a particular direction but not making headway

13 Trying to roll over on the back

14 Appear to be climbing an invisible ladder

So if a crew member falls overboard and everything looks OK—don’t be too sure. Sometimes the most common indication that someone is drowning is that they don’t look like they’re drowning. They may just look like they are treading water and looking up at the deck. One way to be sure? Ask them, “Are you all right?” If they can answer at all—they probably are. If they return a blank stare, you may have less than 30 seconds to get to them.

And parents—children playing in the water make noise.
When they get quiet, you get to them and find out why.

Click here to watch a brief VIDEO on this.

Monday, May 15, 2017

Pics of my mom.

As a child growing up, I only recall ever seeing one photo of my mother when she wa a child.
I had many from my dad's side of the family as his grandmother was an avid "Kodaker"

The one my mother showed me was of her, sitting on a lawn in a plaid skirt with one of those little Tam-o-shanter hats on over chin length hair.  I don't even know where that photo went or where we were when she showed it to me.  She was probably about 10 yrs old so this would possibly have been around mid to late 1930's.

Anyway, many thanks to my cousing Karen, pictured below: bottom row, second from the right, for finding a bunch of photos in my aunt Becky's photo album and sending them to me.  The are a little bit grainy, but I am very happy to have them.  Thanks Karen!

So in this photo starting at the top left: Uncle Glen, Uncle Dick, Aunt Mary, Aunt Ella,  my dad and in front of him is my mom.  In front of my mom is Grampa Irl. J. Walker, and Gramma Ethel Alta Ready Walker. Beside Gramma is my Aunt Becky.  Kids in the bottom row starting at the left are Billy, me (why a I always doing SOMETHING with my face?!) my cousin Karen and my cousin Dale. ("Deli Bread") This was taken on the front porch of the house on 65th and Foster.

In this photo starting left: Grampa Walker, Uncle Dick, Uncle Glen, Uncle Myron (who died young), my mom and Gramma Walker.

Starting at the top, left : Uncle Dick, Grampa Walker, Uncle Myron.
My mom (look how crazy tall she was!!), Gramma Walker, and the little boy is my Uncle Ed (Karen's dad).  This was taken on the front porch of the house on 65th and Foster.

Left to right: Uncle Dick, Grampa Walker, Gramma Walker, Uncle Glen, my mom, Uncle Ed.
This was taken in the front room of the house on 65th and Foster.

I *think* this is, starting at left: Uncle Dick, mom, Uncle Glen, Gramma, Grampa, Uncle Ed.
Circa 1970's

Starting at the left: Aunt Becky (Karen's mom), Aunt Mary (Uncle Glen's wife) Aunt Ella (Uncle Dick's wife, and my mom.  This was taken on the front porch of the house on 65th and Foster.

From left: My brother, my mom, me, my dad.  This was taken on the front porch of the house on 65th and Foster.

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

John 14:1-14

Jesus said, “Do not let your hearts be troubled. 

Believe in God, believe also in me. 
In my Father’s house there are many dwelling places. 
If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you? 
And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, 
so that where I am, there you may be also. And you know the way to the place
where I am going.” 

Thomas said to him, “Lord, we do not know
where you are going.
How can we know the way?”
Jesus said to him,
“I am the way, and the truth, and the life.
No one comes to the Father
except through me.

If you know me,
you will know myFather also.
From now on you do know him
and have seen him.” 

Philip said to him, “Lord, show us the Father, and we will be satisfied.” 
Jesus said to him, “Have I been with you all this time, Philip, and you
 still do not know me?
Whoever has seen me has seen the Father. 
How can you say, ‘Show us the Father’? 

Do you not believe that I am in the Father and the Father is in me? The words that I say to you I do not speak on my own; but the Father who dwells in me does his works. Believe me that I am in the Father and the Father is in me; but if you do not, then believe me because of the works themselves. Very truly, I tell you, the one who believes in me will also do the works that I do and, in fact, will do greater works than these, because I am going to the Father.
I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Father
may be glorified in the Son. If in my name you ask me for
anything, I will do it.”