Pictures worth a 1000 words

First catching up with patriotic photos from Friday’s AAC with adding the photos to John’s of the Senior center celebration to include photos taken by the staff at the center. They are attached at the end of the 45 photos in this link below:

AAC early Veterans’ Day Celebration photos

Monday, Nov 11 Happy Veterans’ Day

The sunrise was lovely this morning, as viewed from the south side of our valley.

Sunrise from the viewpoint I-82, by EvieMae Scheutz
And another, The Mt. Stuart range overlooking our valley by Evie Scheutz

Below are photographs of the flags I saw flying this morning on my trip down Naneum Rd to Ellensburg. Because I had no camera with me, I called John and asked him to please go take some photos. We have admired them before on Flag Day and July 4th and never gotten a photo. He drove his Crosstrek down, and this is what he got. It was a good thing, because I didn’t come back by until it was almost dark. Also, interesting that the address on the mailbox out front, does not belong to the house in the photo, but to the house down the driveway that John’s car is parked in, in the first overall photo. Top: East side of Naneum road, looking north.
Lower: Looking out over Naneum toward the SW and Manastash Ridge. The display has USA flags on either side with the POW*MIA flag in the center. Wind and position did not allow for a photo, so we took an image from the web.

Thanks to the owners for displaying these several times a year. The place is about 5 miles south of us, on our main route to town. We and the nearest neighbor each had a single flag flying.

My first stop in Ellensburg was at the AAC with my flash drive and to pick up the package of minutes, agenda, etc. for a meeting there tomorrow and the left-behind copies of patriotic audience music from the event there, Friday, 11/8.
I was at Glenn’s to pick him up at 11:00 a.m., getting there a few minutes early and visited with neighbors I know, with their dogs.

Glenn came out and we loaded my car with two huge boxes and a smaller longer box bound for Yakima for returns of unopened merchandise his mom had purchased before her death. We have one larger box yet to take which will fit in my car, but not along with the other three we took today. We were successful in our endeavors.

After returning the boxes, and with help from Glenn’s Smart Phone’s GPS, we went to the American Cancer Society’s thrift store, called the Discovery Shop, at 513 W Yakima Ave, Ph#: 575-1236 open @ 9:30-4:30, to donate a bag of clothing, find out the details for bringing more, and the kinds of items they would accept. I believe I mentioned previously in the blog that this store exists in larger towns, is a registered non-profit, with all the proceeds from items sold in the thrift store going toward cancer research and other needed programs in town. The clothes and accessories that do not sell in the Shop are given to the Mission in Yakima.

I returned my friend home, and went next door to Hearthstone (assisted living home) seeking my friend on her 94th birthday. She was not in her room to answer her phone, and doesn’t have a cell phone. So I searched to find Gloria Swanson in the very large building, even traveling to the front (I’d gone in the rear closer to her room) to the Chandelier room and the (now only) dining room used for the entire facility. She is still a fast walker, and wanders all over the place for her exercise. I finally located her in her sister Shirli’s room, visiting with their niece by phone. I had a birthday card to give her in person, along with several hugs before I left. We had a nice visit and then we walked downstairs to the Garden Room, for a social celebrating Veterans there in residence, and their families. Gloria’s husband Paul was a veteran. That I knew, so I encouraged her to go to that social and I went with her and her sister. My car was parked right outside.

Once out of there, I went back to the AAC (Senior Center) to pick up my flash drive with the photos from Friday. They had not yet had time to remove mine John took, or to add the ones they took on their camera. Now I have all theirs to crop and add to my collection that was in last week’s blog. I have done that now, and placed a link at the top of this page.

Tuesday, Nov 12

Round and round we go, still with problems on the Umpqua Bank account’s Bill Pay system. It took all day for them to sort it out, and now we are back on track, supposedly, but I won’t really know until the check is deposited and reflected on my account.

I got my red bag ready to take to Food Bank senior lunch and the AAC meeting. Both places have something in my red bag in a wallet I have to use. Food Bank has a dinner pass to click into the system for counting attendance; AAC has another code for registering when I check into there.

I left the house about 10:50 a.m. and had to undo the front gate at the end of the driveway. My meeting at the AAC wasn’t until 1:00 p.m., so I stopped off at the Dollar Tree for some essentials.

I stopped off at the Food Bank for the Senior Nutrition lunch on my way to the AAC. They served Shepard’s Pie, very good and more than I could eat, a cup of applesauce, and great dessert.

At the end of our AAC meeting, we were given a shopping bag gotten on a grant for a special Fall-Prevention Program given by the AAC AmeriCorps staff at the Farmers Market), but the bags did not arrive in time for it. I took some for the Fiddlers & Friends who played at the Veterans’ Day thing and are not AAC members.

I went by Bi-Mart, to check numbers (didn’t win), but got some Artificial Tears and some more Alcon ointment for dry eyes at night. Oddly enough, later this week (Sunday a.m. I needed to open a new bottle of artificial tears, and did (using one of the 4 new ones), but it was from a lot that has a top that won’t come off. I tried two, and gave up to take them and the other two I bought back for a refund and alert to get them off the shelf.
I had one from a previous purchase, so I used it, and oddly it had a clear top, so at least I will be able to tell Megan the Bi-Mart employee who manages that aisle how to find the bad ones with the WHITE tops. The box can be opened without disturbing the container to see the color of the top screw cap. So, this Tuesday I’ll take them by, and Monday, I will call to warn them of the problem.

Wednesday, Nov 13

The massive amount of clothing I got several weeks ago is in black garbage bags in the “crew-seat” of the Ford truck. John split the over stuffed original bags into two, so now there are 8 or 9. Some stuff is in a shed. I got one bag and sorted through to list stuff for taking to Discovery Shop. Karen will take this one. I made a copy of the content list for her to carry along.
Busy day. I went to the Food Bank. Then took my red bag & new blue one to show AAC members. Put a carry along bag with Jeans & pants for Sandy in the Music Books box delivered today.

Picked up Christmas cards and small containers from Ann Draper for Stephanie & Sophie. When close to their house next week, I’ll deliver those.

Thursday, Nov 14

Went to Meadows Place for music by the Kittitas Valley Fiddlers & Friends. We had a good turnout of 10 and a good responsive and appreciative audience.

Friday, Nov 15

This morning we went for free railroad ties 11 miles away south on Tjossem Rd.Thanks to Cayla for giving us some of these. Previous owner had them on/in the ground. Many are in poor shape but still have a useful end-of-life period. Cayla and John loaded and I advised. There are 15, with 3 shorter than the standard 8 ft. 6 inches. Other folks were coming to get half-length ones (for flower boxes?), so we only made the one trip. The smaller ones had originally been used for a staircase on the property.

On the way home, we drove by a house in Ellensburg to pick up a free toaster replacement for our broken one. I asked for it on a free site and received this – a very nice 2-slice model. Supper was baked chicken, mashed potatoes, apples, and chicken gravy with mushrooms—another John specialty. Nice end to a day when we had little for brunch.

Saturday, Nov 16

Tired from a long day yesterday, and late bedtime (midnight), I slept in till almost 9:00 this morning.
John’s been up a lot longer and is now taking off to feed Myst. Weather is good so he will work until 11, then we’ll have brunch.

Briarwood today. 8 players came and we had a good audience turnout as well. Great meal they served us at the end: White bean with ham soup by JoEllen, salads – two Jell-O ones (red and orange), Caesar, and Macaroni, plus a table of desserts (with great cookies by Lee), and spiced hot cider, by Lee.

Must get jobs sent out to the jobs list. Did get the Earth Science Weekly send out from the jobsnancy account because the nancyb.hultquist account is too filled and won’t send to a lot of people. Another chore.

Sunday, Nov 17

I only answer telephone calls if I know the number on the caller ID, but now that is no longer dependable. They can now ghost numbers from our personal cell phones. I got a call on my landline yesterday that was from MY cell phone which was not even on because of no reception here. I did not answer and no message was left. I warned John that when I’m away, not to answer a HOME 925-3304 number, because it was ghosted from my cell phone, or his. Scammers are getting more invasive.

Today I did in-house chores, and John bounced from project to project outside, alternating from more physical stuff to lighter duty things. He says we’ll soon have a new stopgap/makeshift gate out near the road. This will be easier for me to open, when he forgets to. There will also be a much longer stretch between the closed gate and the road.

At noon there was “calm” and shortly after there were gusts in the mid-20s. Between 6 & 7 o’clock there was a gust of 38 mph. John found a task away from trees. However, horses dislike windy conditions (movement and sounds come from all directions). They get skittish. Late afternoon is a special feeding for Myst, but she did not want to move into the wind, and the others horses didn’t help with their erratic dancing around. They all went to a spot in the lee of trees. Myst has has a couple hundred dollars of pelleted food and rolled corn, and it hasn’t gotten seriously cold here. She has gained weight. Looks much healthier than 10 weeks ago. That reminds me that I have to call our hay broker, Mario, and set up a hay delivery.

Tonight was left overs with added flake-made mashed potatoes and veggies. The baked chicken was from yesterday, also.
Tomorrow about 10 AM we expect light rain, worsening by evening, and mostly gone by dawn Tuesday. The rest of the week will be clear and cool. We have medical appointments Tues, Thur, and Friday. At 37° our Subarus chirp a “freezing road surface” warning. Funny thing is, if you are not looking at the little screen at the right moment – you miss it. Maybe a “next” car will have a better system.

Hope your week was fine.

Nancy and John
Still on the Naneum Fan

Not so Nasty News Nov 15th

Item #1: Eggs

How long does she have to sit on an egg for it to hatch?

‘Ice eggs’ covered a small section of a Finland beach on Sunday, Nov. 7th.
Recent story.

It was a small area and the ice eggs were smallish. The photo below is from the article, but the place is Nayda in Siberia and it was in 2016. Some were 3 feet across and they went for 11 miles.

Item #2: Thrill

This one is from Washington State, but there was at least one other this week someplace. Car going airborne, I mean.The top car in the above photo has Oregon plates. It is double parked in a driveway in Walla Walla, WA.
The yellow slash points to a large rock. This was a landscape item placed at the entrance to the drive. The working theory is that the car hit the rock, moved it, and caused the car to become airborne.
It is a large 4-door Jeep.
Late word is that the driver was having a medical issue.

Item #3: Toasted toaster

Does your toaster need cleaned out?
Most have small trays that slide out. However, there are things that do not fall through. Earlier this week a piece of bread broke away and lodged along the side.
I emptied the little tray. Then I gently shook the whole thing – a 4 slice model. No luck. I turned the toaster upside down and shook some more. With a little prodding from a wood stick – think popsicle – the large piece fell out.
After the cleaning – nothing worked.There are solutions. Photos above are not from me.

The last two mornings I fried breed in an iron pan.
Nancy has found a replacement. This is a 2-slice model from a divorcee. She got the toaster. It bothers her to use it.
Now ours.

Item #4: director of workplace morale

Dog story 1: Milo the border collie
Several others follow after Milo’s workplace efforts.

From Australia

Item #5: Travel by train

Dog story 2

The Dog Train Link

Strays: “We made a place for them to live.”
And the next obvious step is to build a dog train?

More dogs: Young pup talks to grumpy older dog.

And that, for this week, is the not so nasty news.


Monday, Nov 4

I’m beginning our week with a black and white of the photo published in color in last week’s blog, from Montana, and Tony Bynum’s creative photography.I love the detail in this, which better displays the mountain topography’s geology so well, plus highlighting the kayaker very nicely too. It’s a masterpiece.

Tony wrote me: Hi Nancy, that is a photo of Two Medicine lake in Glacier National Park. The lake is just up the road from my house in East Glacier. It was taken in 2016. It’s actually a two-shot panorama stitched together. I ran across the images the other day while I was searching for some other photographs for a client of mine. It is not unusual when I go digging in my archives to find something I shot but never processed or published, and this scene I was just lucky enough to be at the lake when there was a kayaker heading up the lake. [At the resolution we use the kayaker only shows as a small thing on the bright water.]

John and I are going to Cottage Café at noon meet Sharon & Jack for lunch, and to go by our PCP’s office to pick up some paperwork that I need tomorrow. Jack had a birthday the end of October, and I had one the beginning of September, so we get $10 off our meal with a mailed coupon.

I called the Umpqua Bank again about problems using their bill pay system on line, to pay from our checking account without writing a check. This has been a long on-going process, which should have been resolved last week.

We were gone from 11:00 to 4:05 p.m. today and tired of doctors. John went to the dentist early morning to reset the temporary crown, we went to Cle Elum to meet our friends at noon, and then to the doctor’s office after 1:00, back to the eye doctor in Ellensburg at 2:25 p.m., where my severely dry eye problem was diagnosed and treated.

We went on by the Coop for special horse feed for Myst, and then to Super 1 pharmacy for my eye medications ($40 later) and home for John to do chores before dark.
The day on the road meant postponing things at home.
Came home to messages everywhere – on email and phone.

One landline message was that my PFT test had been postponed a week, but unfortunately, that will also have to be rescheduled because it conflicts with our wellness visit to our PCP on Nov 22. It now has been rescheduled for 10:15 a.m. check-in on Nov 19th .

Tuesday, Nov 5

John’s out holding Myst for David to trim her feet, and then we are going to the Food Bank for a Senior Nutrition lunch before our appointment with my cardiologist. Our lunch was great (but we were late making it there, past normal serving time). Lori was kind enough to load our plates and microwave them for us. We had a slice of roasted chicken, with stuffing, and mixed vegetables (green peas, green beans, white pearl onions, peppers, and carrots), and a cookie for dessert. We’d stayed longer than we should having a nice conversation with a friend.

From there we drove directly to my cardiologist’s office, arriving with two minutes to spare.
I had printed my meds list and loaded a manila envelope with other records to show and ask Dr. Krueger about. He met with us for over an hour, and responded to all questions, comments, and reviewed all lab test results (including an echocardiogram) done since we saw him 4 months ago. He dictated his evaluation and discussion with us, in our presence (and accepts corrections) and it will be retyped for a printed version to be sent to my PCP and to me. He also listed 6 issues for me to take away and handle soon.

One was a reduction in a medication I’m taking, Atorvastatin, to only 20 mg. Sadly, I just refilled it recently for 45 tablets. Oh well. The prescription was for 80mg and I was taking ½ a pill, but to half the remaining halves would not be possible because of the shape of the pill, to get ¼ of a pill. So will order a 40 and then cut in half. (Oddly enough the price on the 80 is better than on the 40, and why I was using it). I need to check the 20mg vs. the 40mg. Maybe we won’t have to cut it at all! I think I’m better to quarter the 80 – For $5.10 vs. $9.34 =$4.24. I just worked a long time halving the ½ tablets I had, and with a pill splitter they pulverize into non-appropriate sizes, so I’ll pay the extra. His reasoning for the dosage reduction was actually good, as my cholesterol levels in the cardiologist’s words were “beautiful” – (HDL= 89 & LDL = 41).

I took a copy of the list of vaccines (to update my records), recent blood tests, and medications. I told him about my need for moderate use of opiates for when I am going to be playing music for over an hour, or dancing. I try not to raise my left arm over my shoulder, ever. He told me about a pain clinic in Yakima at the Aspen medical complex on 16th street, to which I could have my PCP make a referral – so I have to remember to do that at our annual physical coming up end of November.

Our farrier is coming to trim Myst’s feet tomorrow at 11:00 a.m. and we are scheduled to go to my cardiologist at 1:10 (but in Ellensburg, not in Yakima, so that’s helpful).

We also need to go by Fred Meyer for John’s colas, and I need to refill my dog’s prescription for Rimadyl there, if it has been delivered. They had to order it.
We bought a lot of Colas for him at a discount (their senior discount works on the first Tuesday of the month at 10%, but only on Kroger products). Although, I have to return to the store with my receipt to get the 10% discount. I should have asked for it at the end of the cashier’s check out. I did not; they require knowledge at the end, not the beginning because they might forget. This time I forgot. I got that knowledge late tonight from a customer service rep named Kira. They will give me the discount, which in this case applied to 2 buys at 1.69 each and 12 at .77 each. (all Kroger brands. That will mean a refund of $1.60).

Wednesday, Nov 6

Today starts with getting ready for going to the Food Bank. I leave about 10:45 to get there to set up chairs and music stands. We start playing as soon as possible after 11:30 a.m. We stop at 12:10 and are eating by 12:15.
We had 10 people today, did patriotic and USA songs, very well received. I had a big plate of spaghetti, cup of fruit, and juice, with a tiny bit of salad (most was dark green I couldn’t eat), and a small roll.

I then stopped off at the AAC to deliver a shirt to a gal for her daughter (a 2X), and then I made my way to my meeting with Glenn at his mom’s house at 1:15 p.m. to pick up some of my stuff that I had loaned to her.

I had filled out paperwork and so I dropped by for a temporary state parking sticker for special occasions on campus, where only handicap spaces are available. I’ll need to use it to get to the IAFI lecture where all 10 spaces near the building in the middle of campus have been changed. The university quit issuing their disabled parking space (campus only) coupon for the mirror. Now one has to get a PCP’s referral to obtain a state permit, even a temporary one.

Fred Meyer Pharmacy did not yet have Annie’s meds, so I got my $1.60 refund from yesterday’s mistake.
John fixed meatloaf, beets, and baked potato tonight.

Thursday, Nov 7

Normal morning, and getting ready to eat brunch and go to play music at the Rehab. We will be going tonight to the Historical Museum for a lecture, and I have my camera and tripod packed to take in ahead of the 6:00 p.m. starting time. We loaded an old metal sign for a machine shop. The sign featured Harley Davidson and had “1 mile from Ellensburg.” The museum director, Sadie, is going to include this in the collection, and try to find out about the business. We’ve had this for 15 years – given to us by a since deceased neighbor.

Tomorrow is our Veterans’ Day playing. I got the audience music ready 43 copies – need to pick up the remainder and my paperwork for the Nov 12 meeting at the AAC Advisory Board at 1:00, on Monday.
We had meatloaf and carrots for supper.

We left after 5:15 p.m. to drive to town for a lecture at the Kittitas County Historical Museum. The Wanapum people live (now) 30 miles to our southeast, near Wanapum Dam, a major structure on the Columbia River. I sat beside the presenter and his wife. Below are the videos I took with permission from Rex and his wife Andrea. During the first one below (Sadie Thayer’s introduction, is a song that Rex wanted to sing. It is part of the Washoni religion and they did not want that recorded because of the special spirituality.

Rex Buck, Jr. Intro to the Washoni Song (not recorded)

Rex Buck, Jr.’s Story of the Wanapum People, KCHM: 11/7/19

Answer to Sun Light Message in Song Lyrics

Now below, I’m adding after the talk by Rex, my finds on the web of Links to history about the Wanapum (River) peoples

Civilian Displacement: Hanford, WA

Wanapum People After Smohalla

Friday, Nov 8

Sunrise: we missed getting a good picture because of trees, buildings, and a hill. The sky was ablaze with reds & oranges.

I looked at my normal photographer friends in the Kittitas Valley, but didn’t find any, so I checked on line and found these from Ferndale, WA, northwest of Bellingham, and close to Canada.Church Rd, Anita Goecke; Unick Rd, Allison Trimble; Lummi Island, Colby Chambers. All are taken 11-8-19, shown in Ferndale News. Mt. Baker is 35 miles east; one of the snowiest places of North America.

Normal morning but heading for an early Veterans’ Day Memorial celebration at the Senior Center.
We arrived before 11:00 to setup things, for our music group, and to find out last minute changes in plans for the day. I brought the audience music to be distributed after we started playing as the dishes were being cleaned from the tables. John took photos. Our group was setup to play on the other side of the pool table, and I’m standing in front probably setting up my music stand. A singer (Lou) is standing behind me and he is one of 3 veterans associated with our group who were honored today. And the two tables with red tablecloths in the back of this picture, behind the tables with white tablecloths were reserved for the musicians and family. You see the red, white, and blue colored tables.

Each Military Branch was brought forward and Karen Eslinger, our accordionist, played the theme songs as they stood as a group. The official program began a little after 11:30 p.m.
It began with a 12 slide PowerPoint Presentation created by one of the AmeriCorps staff, Deborah Boudreau. She did an awesome job on the presentation. David Douglas, in his Army uniform, acted as MC and explained the slides – a timeline of the various services.

Next is a Link to the PowerPoint slide content: (I have no clue why the slides are shuffled in reverse order, with #2 at end)

Thank You For Your Service

When the branches walked forward to be honored, their branch’s history was presented (you’ll see on the slides above, if you weren’t there to hear, and the MC interviewed a couple of them asking the years served, where, what their specialization was, and what memory they took away from the experience. Each veteran was given a postcard for today (left below), and I shall place a photo of our day’s cake dessert beside it.

Here is a link to the photos of the day John took, and we’ll add others that the AAC staff took, when available.

Celebration photos

On the way home we stopped off to show my patriotic garb to some military friends, and Cheryl Winston took this nice photo of me to send to a lady who loves seeing me in the patriotic clothing because of her son’s being in the military.Supper with shrimp, carrots, French fried potatoes, and Honeycrisp apple. Piece of chocolate silk pie with pecans made a nice dessert.

Saturday, Nov 9

Started the morning with sleeping in, and then began with Facebook messages, about morning sunrises. I have two to share for today from our Kittitas Valley.This capture from Lise McGowan, commenting “Game Day Sunrise! Keith (her hubby) could only see Purple and Gold!!! Get your Gumbo on!!! Geaux Tigers!!!”

Another photographer in our midst is Evie Scheutz, who posted her morning pre-sunrise shot of our agricultural valley, for this 11/9 morning, with her comment, “Always a beautiful morning in paradise…” Evie’s photo was taken from Cleman Rd, south of Kittitas, WA

John’s in from chores and fixing brunch. This was diuretic day for me, so I’m traveling up and down the long hallway to the back bathroom of this L-shaped house. At least I get my exercise.
Sent the Nov 9 Earth Science Weekly PDF out, among other emails needing attention, and chores around the house.

John fixed fried smoked turkey to supplement a low calorie Marie Callender Roasted Turkey dinner with gravy, mashed potatoes, & carrots/broccoli.

Sunday, Nov 10

Finally getting started at almost 9:00 a.m. I am not rested yet. John’s been up since 7:00 (not his normal 6:00).
Okay. Time for me to load dishes to soak and finish blog that awaits. Been another busy week, with another coming on, even tomorrow on the holiday we have already celebrated early.
Okay, the first sink-full of dishes is soaking awaiting for me to load into the dishwasher. I’ve set our new timer John got for me to remind me of my next chore. It’s so cool, a metal one with a magnet that attaches to our metal kitchen refrigerator very securely, and has a loud and predictable ring. Our old timer was getting to the end of the timing and quitting before ringing (cause unknown).
The old one (right) was a Taylor (on a stand) for which we never easily had space available in the kitchen. Left one is by Myle, smaller and conveniently out of the way on the fridge door held on by a magnet. John came in and fixed us a late brunch, egg/cheese/mushroom/ham omelet, with toast. Now he’s outside working on a gate project. I will go out and review his work and grab a bag of clothes out of the back of our pickup to take to Yakima tomorrow for donation at the Discovery Shop (American Cancer non-profit for research). All the shoes, clothing, and hangers are either in the Ford truck or in a shed. This stuff needs to go – and make someone happy.

The new gate is a 4 ft. and a 10 ft. combination. These replace a makeshift pole and rope that has been in place for years. In fact, the new panels have been in the hay shed for about 3 years. It was time! New gate opened and closed; see explanation below in video:

John’s New Access Gate to the pasture and sheds
Supper was fried breast of chicken, large cheese biscuit with butter, and some chicken/bean chili.

Hope your week was fine.

Nancy and John
Still on the Naneum Fan

Not so Nasty News NOV 8th

Item #1: Street scenes
The top photo is of the 17th worst traffic choke point in the Nation . That’s what it was like last week when we went to the big city. On the Naneum Fan, our traffic jams involve herds of cattle or flocks of sheep, both rare.

The photo with the plant and green water can shows another urban phenomenon we have missed. A current story is from India where the problem of potholes has gotten so bad the residents starting filling holes so often that authorities became worried (putting people out of work, or what?), and ordered them to stop. Among others who have taken up the pothole cause across India is an artist in the tech capital of Bangalore.
Earlier this year, he created a video of someone dressed in an astronaut suit walking on a street so badly pocked and broken that it looked like the surface of the moon. Authorities fixed the street the next day.
Last year “Pothole Vigilantes” in New Orleans showed what can be done with beer, sliders and 700 pounds of quick-dry asphalt. Elsewhere, pothole activists have posted photos of toy boats and rubber ducks bobbing in water-filled potholes.
There is also a fellow in NYC that plants flowers and then makes and posts videos of drivers navigating around them.
Coby Persin hit a pothole

Ask not what your city can do for you, but get out there and be creative. Search ‘images’ with ‘city potholes’ for ideas. You are welcome!

Item #2: $30 car tabs initiative
Tim Eyman has been the leader against high cost car registrations.
On the right side, note the 2 stick-on tabs. The partial left one is for the month – January is 1 – while the many colored ones have the year. 2019 = black, 2018 = green; 2017 = red; stuck on top of that for prior years.

This is complicated. Voters in Washington State just voted, for a second or third time, to set a yearly car license fee to the cost of providing the “tab.” That has been calculated to be $30.
Some years ago the State tacked on “fees” – taxes – to auto registrations. WA politicians do not have the word taxes in their vocabulary. They quietly add fees to things.
In the 1980s registering a car would cost several hundred dollars. As new residents we were shocked at the price, but did not have a clue about it. Then in 1999, Tim Eyman (pictured above) detailed what those fees went toward. The initiative was passed by voters with 56% but declared unconstitutional – and so it has gone for years. Voters say “charge us only what it costs” and government comes back with a legal challenge regarding the constitutionality of the initiative.

The most recent fuss involved recently voted-in fees to help fund an extension of public transit, called Sound Transit 3, abbreviated as ST3. Only the auto owners in three counties [only King (Seattle) and Snohomish (north of Seattle) voted for this] would be charged the new fee.
It got interesting when the early renewals had to pay as much as 4 times more than they had the previous year. Why?
Authorities used a car-value-table that critics say is an over-inflated value for a vehicle rather than something closer to what the Kelley Blue Book thinks that vehicle is worth. This formula dates back to 1990 when legislators wanted more money so they quietly changed the way value was established – and the fee went up. Surprise! However, note that this was not a new tax.

I’ve called this method of funding larger government as “stealth taxes.” Such increases are not done in secret, but they are added in such a way that few folks realize it happens. Stealthy is the best description I can think of.
Others have provided descriptions more colorful.

Item #3: Oysters
I have nothing against oysters as long as they stay where they belong, namely on a reef in a bay. I think this is dependent on how close you are to an ocean while you were growing up. At a meeting on Thursday evening, a fellow told me his brother had brought dozens of fresh oysters from the coast near where they lived growing up. He was thrilled. I told him I preferred Hickory nuts and Cottontails. Anyway . . .

This story is from Australia’s Port Phillip Bay, between Melbourne and Bass Strait and the Southern Ocean.
discarded shells make oyster reefs

They used dredges to harvest oysters and ruined the reefs. Now, by using shells from restaurants to rebuild starting places in appropriate bays, behold, life is returning.

The shells came from restaurants.
My question: Where did the restaurants get the critters?

Item #4: Dental

Last Friday I had dental as Item #4. I had a double temporary crown procedure. That was on Wednesday morning.
It came loose on Saturday. Monday of this week it was “cemented” back on. I have no idea what the cement is. Terms such as adhesive and resin don’t help. How about Zinc-Oxide Eugenol (ZOE)?
Anyway, the permanent crowns (not linked to one another) are to be put in place on November 21st.
Just 12 more days.

Item #5: Latitude
Think of this: Here on the Naneum Fan we are 110 miles North of Ottawa, or 1,500 miles north of Miami. Hello Darkness.

And that, for this week, is the not so nasty news.

Travel weather

Tony sent me a photo of Two Medicine Lake, Glacier National Park. Google Earth will show you the Lake’s location if you search.

Monday, Oct 28

We stayed home today. Nancy, computer chores, calling PCP for missing paperwork with call for Wellness Check and Annual Physical, now called Chronic Conditions Visit.
The Wellness Check is paid for by Medicare and is a useless waste of our time and mileage, to demonstrate we can tell time on a clock with hands. It’s mostly with the physician’s nurse and we might get to speak with our doctor for a few minutes. Labs will be ordered (most likely) to be drawn during the following week. Ours bumps into the day after Thanksgiving, so we have to wait until the first week of December. That upsets me because we keep being pushed farther in the year for our next year’s physical, all because of their mistake in scheduling our appointment when it was supposed to be (blamed on a change in computer medical records software change).

John took me out to view his progress and plans for his loading dock. Hopes it will add value, and it gets rid of lots of rocks from our alluvial fan, concrete sidewalk pieces (scavenged), mangled iron fence posts**, purchased railroad ties, and 10″ iron spikes remaining from a previous fence project. [**remember the load of logs that rolled over our front fence?]

I took a few photos, see this link below and click on each of the 8 photos included to get a tour and small explanation; be sure you have click the Info button (an ‘ I ‘ with a circle around it). It will provide details on the right side of the photo you’re viewing.

John’s Loading Ramp Construction

Came back in and loaded more dishes.
Tonight is showering time because tomorrow morning I have a haircut appointment around the rural block, at 11:30, followed by a trip to town for several reasons, with the last stop, probably being at 2:30 at Bi-Mart to check numbers and to transfer 3 boxes of pine cones to Izzy. She plans to bring some slippers for John that her hubby doesn’t wear. I guess that’s to thank him for all his efforts in getting pine cones to give her for her crafting projects. They fit him, and she brought me a pair of Bearpaw boots with sheep fleece lining and trim that also fit me. Nice.

Tuesday, Oct 29

I had a quite full day, and John was mostly outside, but some inside (cleaning out the refrigerator and old food for one). It was very cold today. I never saw the temp go over 30°. I couldn’t take my shower last night because of the high winds and the threat of losing our electricity again with a tree over the wires, so waited until this morning. All went well and I dressed in many layers but should have worn pants that were not polyester, but a thicker weave. The wind blew right through them. My first stop was my neighbor’s a mile away for my haircut. I needed it. She and her hubby lost chunks of their roof (of their porch, not the house roof) in the high winds last night.

From there I drove to town in time to get a lunch at the Food Bank and visit with two friends, Karen & Don. We had an interesting conversation and a great meal: Sloppy Joes, green beans, Hubbard squash, apple juice, and a piece of cheese cake with a pumpkin swirl.

I was running later than planned, and so went directly to the hospital for my blood draw. I checked in under my cardiologist’s name, and then requested at the lab, that everything be shared with my PCP. That worked well. I trust all the paperwork got to him, but I need to check the portal and print it so I can take it with me Tuesday, Nov 5, just in case.

Now, I went back to Safeway to pick up my Warfarin – 5mg tablets that I expected to be halved, thus 90 from 45. They had not halved them, so I waited for Charles to do the job. He suggested it, and we had talked when I ordered it about putting the instructions on to have it done, but when I asked him to check, he exclaimed that they had not read the instructions and it was not done. So, he did it. He said the other pharmacists would hear about his feelings on it.
Meanwhile, I took my month’s supply happily for $12.44 and left by way of the counter with marked down meat, which John usually checks when he’s in the store. Nothing worth bringing home today, however.

Next stop was Super 1 to pick up a few bulk carrots. I succeeded, and left for Bi-Mart for my meeting with Izzy, for the pine cones and slippers exchange.

Wednesday, Oct 30

Early this morning I found out my PFT (Pulmonary Function Test) is scheduled for 11:00 a.m. with the director, Jim, administering it at Cardiopulmonary Services at our local Kittitas Valley hospital. I have to have that annually because of one of the medications I’m on for my heart (Amiodarone), that potentially can scar the lungs. Happily, I have successfully been on it since 2010, and I want that to continue. It controls atrial fibrillation perfectly for me (NEVER had any since going on it 9 years ago). I don’t like the alternative medication, which requires 3 nights in the hospital to adjust the dosage.

Here’s what to expect for the upcoming PFT (which I have had for 8 previous years):
• Approximately one hour for testing.
• Albuterol, a bronchodilator, is used as part of this treatment to relax muscles in the airways and increase air flow to the lungs.
• The PFT measures how air flow, using a variety of breathing maneuvers.
• All PFTs completed at the hospital are over-read by a board-certified pulmonary physician.

Those expectations above are from their website. I also know that my cardiologist and I can obtain the analysis results on a CD sent after the test, and it comes with a comparison report to the previous year’s. My cardiologist wants to review all the records each year as well, and he has previous years in my file for a comparison. I have them too.

I spent the next part of my morning cleaning up and loading the rest of the dishes and washing them, and dealing with emails afterwards, before leaving the house for my stops in town today.

John left at 9:30 with the larger (Ford 350) truck loaded with stuff for the transfer station (aka, the dump). Then he will get bags of horse feed and Sunflower seeds. Next groceries, looking for sales. The F-350 uses lots of gas, so multi-purpose drive to town is appreciated. I used the Forester, as our timing didn’t let us go in one vehicle.

Photo back in the day by my friend EvieMae Schuetz, who grew up in Ellensburg and went to movies there as a child. She posted this photo from her past, this week on Facebook (You Know You’re from Ellensburg), and she received an incredible number of memories from others with their own memories of the old theater. It made for interesting reading. I’m sorry it was no longer in operation when I arrived in town.

John and I did go to the Roslyn, WA theater. I wonder if it still operates; looked it up, and it does! The general admission is $9 but being over 65 we can get in for $7.00. I also remember their being a drive-in theater in town, but it was no longer operational either. It was leveled eventually and replaced with more modern buildings.

This photo grabbed my attention because now it is where I go every Wednesday to the annex of the Liberty Theater for the Food Bank lunch. It is now the place where the downtown Calvary Baptist Church meets. The annex is their recreation/dining room.
My first stop was there today to set up for music. I took along a protein drink in case there was too much on the buffet I couldn’t eat, but it was fine. We played music for 40 minutes to an appreciative audience. There were a lot of people there today eating, and we had 4 singers and 4 instrumentalists. The building is in the center of town, so is very accessible.

After that, we had our food, once we’d packed up the music stands and chairs. Food today for me was spaghetti, a piece of sausage from a ravioli dish, mixed green salad/ranch dressing, fresh sliced apples and oranges, and a cake I took a bite of and brought the rest home to John. He got home about the same time as I did, helped me unload, and then he had leftover beef stew for his late lunch.

His day was worse than mine. (Item #4 of His Not so Nasty News, just prior comments on this.) He spent 2 hours in the dental chair for two fillings, and paid half of the bill ($500), plus scheduled another appointment for a crown for later in November.

I see the writing on the wall for medical (including dental) expenses for this year’s taxes. Three days later (Saturday) the temporary (plastic) crown came off. He cannot keep temporaries in his mouth for some reason. He’ll have to go in Monday to have another go at it. He is set for the real crown on the 21st!

I also went to Bi-Mart for some Fisherman’s Friends cough drops, Artificial Tears, and dry cat food. I got all but the Artificial Tears (none in stock), and also picked up a large bottle of Hydrogen Peroxide because I used the rest of what we had with doctoring the dog bite I received several weeks ago.

I went to the Senior Center to discuss plans for our Veterans’ Day celebration there on Nov 8. Our music group will be providing the music after lunch, of patriotic songs, and U.S. songs. Some program changes happened from last year we needed to plan for, so I was checking on that. I think we have it figured out now.

Boy is this a lovely colorful painting in the sky for the Halloween Eve’s sunset in the Kittitas Valley.
Halloween Eve Sunset by Lise McGowan, described later by Lise as, God did provide a masterpiece that night.

Thursday, Oct 31

John started the morning before I did and did all the outside chores. I have my work cut out for me, but had to take care of emails I was not expecting.

He’s back in at 11:40 a.m. to take care of brunch, for which I’m most grateful.

Worked on the Genworth Long Term Care Transfer Funds need. I eventually finished it and got into email. They received it but have not responded yet that it is completed. I await.

Called about Umpqua Bank problem. It took more than a day to resolve, and still is not apparently fixed. Calling Monday morning.

Started at 3:15 with Umpqua bank to remove cookies and straighten account problems so I can do a BILL PAY on line. This is really a PITA. I had a 9-minute wait for Tech Support after going through the first person Alysa in Roseburg, OR.
Another agent, named Chase, changed one thing, re-activated it and I’m set to go in 15 minutes from now (it’s 3:44). I talked to his supervisor to thank Chase for his service. However, I waited all weekend and the bill pay I submitted did not go through, so have to wait until Monday morning to call Umpqua to notify them.
What a helluva afternoon.

Received this morning from Cameron Fries (White Heron Cellars & Mariposa Vineyard), this note, “In case you didn’t see it” he sent a link to the Spokane NWS blog “Coldest October”, and he went on to say that this was their latest harvest ever. John will get the scoop on the ripeness, sugar levels, and so on – next time he goes over.
John does check this blog, but they don’t publish regularly, so he had not seen this specific one.

Coldest October in the Inland NW in a long time

We have certainly noticed the cold weather in October, but we also had not seen this blog report.

Day continued to get worse. Fixing the problem with the Umpqua bank online and deleting cookies DID affect more than just my bank transactions. It affected all my Gmail account passwords, and Facebook access, and Jacquie Lawson access, and probably more I haven’t yet found. It’ll be a cold day in hell before I ever do that again. I also have updated my list for John in case I’m not around when he has to access something. He doesn’t use Google Chrome as his browser. I could not switch to Edge because the bank does not support that browser. So, I had no choice. Now that I know the final reason it could not be accessed, I realize I did not have to delete all my cookies. Too late.
I THINK after a lot of wasted time, I have retrieved all my logins.
We still haven’t had supper.

Friday, Nov 1

Normal morning chores for each of us.
Get ready for going to Seattle. John has the directions there and it’s about a 2-hr drive. The event will start at 2:00 at the Mountaineers’ place. He has printed our instructions. We will wear our WTA labeled shirts to be dressed appropriately for the Volunteer Recognition Event. We navigate around the University of Washington, they have a football game with Utah.
Checked Motor Trend; and PayPal deductions we didn’t intend to make on a credit card account.

John dealt with Vanguard and we have spent incredible time on line with these two issues all morning. Vanguard is changing from mutual funds only to a more full service brokerage system. Their term is “transition”, and it just makes work for us.

One is allowed only to dispute CITI BANK VISA charges within 90 days, so read and check everything immediately when a statement arrives, especially on John’s account. But obviously on mine as well.

Motor Trend “on demand digital site” refunded 6 months’ worth of the last year’s incorrect charges ($29.94), because of niceness of an agent. It was part of the free 14-day subscription notice on line, so let’s not do that again for any magazine. Go through College Subscription Services, as we do with all other magazines. It was included in the online thing John did for the paper copy (at a good price, $18 for two years), but we will not renew that in the future. It cost us ~ $45 for this mistake.

Now John is out removing a tree off the fence that fell from Brashler’s property east of us. He mentioned it in his Friday column (‘Strays’, Not So Nasty News, so please refer there, and for other interesting comments, if you haven’t read them.

Saturday, Nov 2

Long day, for which we left later than we should have for Seattle. Most of the distance was in I-90, but it ends south of the City, junctioning with I-5, the Mexico to Canada, west coast major highway. The traffic was awful on I-5. Stop and crawl for miles. We finally made it to the Mountaineers’ place on Sand Point Way.
The Sand Point neighborhood of Seattle is northeast of the City’s center. The peninsula is the location of former Naval Station Puget Sound.

History, here.

Sand Point is the peninsula, Lake Washington to the east, with Pontiac and Wolf bays, north and south, respectively.We wanted to miss the UW area, so stayed on I-5 to about the level of Pontiac Bay. Then we cut across through an interesting old neighborhood using NE 95th Street. A quick search suggests that 95th Street is a boundary between a couple of “known” neighborhoods. Something to look into.John drove I-90 to North Bend, WA and I drove the rest of the way with him navigating. Back the same, and I drove to Issaquah for a Costco gas fill-up, and he drove the rest of the way home. We didn’t make it until 7:30 p.m.

WTA Volunteer Recognition Event, 11-2-2019

Sunday, Nov 3

John reset all the clocks, did morning chores outside, and visited with a neighbor at the road. I worked in the house: taking pictures off from yesterday. Worked on editing them some. Sent emails needing attention.

We fixed brunch and finished it. I cooked us 3 eggs over easy (1 for John), he cooked sausage patties, and fixed our toast, and opened a can of peaches. I had my neighbor’s Apricot homemade preserves on mine. Now alternating between the blog and other chores.

Okay, John just closed his computer and went outside. Now I can do things on line using the Internet and it won’t mess up his searching.

We decided yesterday not to take the Geology Field trip field trip by Nick Zentner to Drumheller Channels. We had gone on a trip over 10 years ago behind closed / locked gates with a summer intern I had there. He took John and me to some sites (say of the start of the irrigation system for the Columbia Basin), which few in the public are privy too. It was an interesting experience.
We do love Nick’s field trips and lectures, but this one was not timed well for us with other activities this weekend and coming week with two doctors, dentist, and events for Veterans’ Day (in advance).

A final photo by Lise McGowen. The little bump on the horizon is Mt. Rainier. Thanks, Lise.Lise’s comment about her photograph: I walked out to our back pasture to capture yet another amazing sunset! Of course, I was surrounded by our beautiful horses! They were very curious as to what all the excitement was about! Lots of nudges, photo bombs, sniffing my camera, etc …and then they went back to grazing! It was fun to hang with them this evening!!! Tonight was an “Evening of Solitude!” Blessings to you all!!

Hope your week was fine.

Nancy and John
Still on the Naneum Fan

Not so Nasty News November 1st

Item #1: Not all gone I’ve carted many Black Walnuts a respectable distance from the house, to a spot near numerous large trees. The little squirrels can have a feast.
After strong wind a few days ago most, but not all the nuts and leaves were gone from the trees. The image below reminded me of a short story by a writer that liked surprise endings. Here is the last bit from the story I thought of:
. . . it’s Behrman’s masterpiece – he painted it there the night that the last leaf fell.

The Last Leaf, by O. HenryThe author is listed as ‘ O. Henry ‘ – not his birth name, and just one of several used with the stories he wrote. The Wikipedia entry for him is interesting.

Item #2: Another tree

Years ago I brought a well used long handled sledge hammer. This is the sort of tool used for busting rock, not the type for driving railroad spikes. Those are usually called spike mauls.
Video review of spike mauls

The handle on the tool was ancient, cracked, and wired round-n-round to hold it together. So it has been pretty much useless for the 10 years I’ve had it. I do have another sledge, so heavy it was designed for someone twice my size. Anyway, I bought a new handle.I was born and raised in the forest of Western Pennsylvania. Every fall we would gather Hickory nuts – leaving most for the squirrels. Tools with Hickory handles were common.
But why?, you might ask. I did.

At this link there is a table with North American and world woods showing specific gravity, compressive strength, bending strength, stiffness, and hardness. Wood Strength

If you are not “in” to looking at tables, here is a summary from Know Your Woods, a 1959 book by Albert Constantine, Jr.:
Some woods are stronger than hickory and others are harder, but the combination of characteristics such as strength, toughness, hardness and stiffness possessed by hickory has not been found to the same degree in any commercial wood.
Elsewhere the phrase “exceptional shock resistance” is used.
I have to shave it down a little to fit it onto the head. And that’s sad news, but expected.

Item #3: Strays

Neighbors went to the hills for Elk hunting. Daughter-in-law met me while searching for a misplaced pony. After stirring up the neighborhood, all is well as the critter found its way home. Today, I saw a small dog (red collar) near our house. Would not come to me. So I was encouraging it to go home by following it at a distance. It did go somewhere but I lost track.
During that exercise I noticed a large tree had strayed from a neighbor’s property.
On its way to the ground (directed by the unusual East Wind) it encountered a four-strand barbed wire fence. This was an issue because the spot was where I have cleared brush and tangled vines so the young deer can have a passage through the neighborhood.
I cut the wires, pulled the tree out with a 4×4 truck, and rebuilt the fence. A bit more to do there.
All is well.

Item #4: Dental

Wednesday morning I had two teeth (side-by-side) prepared for porcelain crowns. The grinding, molding, and plastic restoration for the two bad guys took 2 hours. Being side-by-side allowed the temporary crown to be “bridged”, or a single unit.
This is expected to help hold them in place during the 2-week pause before completion. We’ll see. A single one last year lasted all of two days.

Item #5: 3.145926535

And that, for this week, is the not so nasty news.

Feels like . . .

Flash back to Scott Niccolai’s talk in last week’s blog about Stream Restoration. John found this reference accidentally while searching for photos of a helicopter moving logs. Caption: People watch helicopter lift logs to be placed in stream for habitat restoration.
Helicoptering in Logs for the Northwest’s Largest River Restoration

Monday, Oct 21

I’ll start off the week, with more awesome photos from my friend in Michigan of her friends, the Sandhill Cranes. Hope you like these as much as I do.Autumn leaves flight and fluttering of wings Early morning stroll and foraging

John’s out feeding Myst her concentrated food. She is putting on some weight. Our vet, Dr. Dan, stopped by the other evening on his way home (he lives a mile NE of us on Charlton Rd, and took a look at her. She has gained weight, but we’d like another month of good weather. Instead it feels like winter. Report is that winter just hit Boulder, CO. Here is what the NWS thinks the remainder of the week will be like there:If the high of 18°F, on Wednesday, happens it will set several cold records for the date and the season. Holy Cow!

Here on the Naneum Fan, a gal came for the pine cones we put into a 5-gallon bucket for her, and brought me a blouse and a hand-knit scarf she made. I had never seen one like it before. It’s close to an infinity scarf, if you look up images on google. I will likely wear it for the Raclette at White Heron, coming near the new year.

This afternoon, I drove to the Kittitas P.O. and submitted an extension tax form. Best place to go where I was the only one at the counter and handled rapidly. The best 10 mile trip I can make for such needs. The wait at the Ellensburg USPS is often met with a long line out the door, with only two agents (if you’re lucky).

Tuesday, Oct 22

We stayed home today. John’s done his outside chores in high wind gusts, but he was wearing his full coveralls.

I have been working on scheduling, emails, medications, updating my Medic Alert information (on line, changing providers and medications list), helping give Glenn Engels some information about donating food to the FISH food bank. He is starting to empty the house where his mom lived. I never mentioned about our friend, his Mom, Anne Engels. She died a couple of weeks ago at Fire Island, her favorite place on Earth, while vacationing there for September and October. She has made that trip as long as Glenn can remember.

Soon, we will be having brunch: egg, pancake, & peaches.

Working on my addition to Medic Alert meds at the moment. Just updated doctors (only PCP & Cardiologist). And ready to change emergency back up to Geography secretary, and add another friend as 3rd contact. Spent a lot of time updating my medications list, with dosages and frequency.

Called two places to update my vaccination history. Flu shot this year (10/7), and am up-to-date on pneumonia shots. Cle Elum mailed me that record, which didn’t arrive until Saturday.

Changes in schedule this week; add Scholarship luncheon group, this Friday, at the Tower Theatre lobby on campus.

High winds blew all night, and continued early here this morning, but the airport didn’t start registering them until 9:00 a.m.— then hourly, it has reported: Gusts: 32, 41, 45, 49, 44, 47, 47, 39, 38, 30, 31, 29. Gets worse later this week.

Afternoon snack, fruit cake; later, Cheez-its. I worked alternately on the computer, emails, filing, planning music attendance for this week and looking forward to the Veterans’ Day presentation at the Senior Center on Nov. 8.

Sustained wind speed has been consistently in the 30s, & dropped to the 20s at 4:00 p.m.

Supper: Cauliflower, ham with elbow macaroni, and a great apple creation baked by John using Red Delicious apples from high up in a 37-year old tree. [via 1st owners of our house] He cut and sprinkled cinnamon on those, added cashews, and a batter made from pancake mix.

We have been busy getting our voting ballots done tonight. I can put them in the ballot box when I go by the Courthouse to the Food Bank Lunch tomorrow at Liberty Theater annex on 5th. Our ballot has a dozen ‘advisory’ items – we get to express our feelings about these, but the legislators get to ignore them.

Too much time spent on projects; not going to bed until too late.

Wednesday, Oct 23

Get ready for Food Bank lunch and music. Fixed a protein drink just in case the pasta is not okay. I brought it home. Had spaghetti and one piece of chicken from a pesto pasta (but didn’t take any pasta), fruit (including mango, papaya, pineapple, & pear on cottage cheese, and a little of the mixed salad, mostly ate halved cherry tomatoes.

As planned, I went by the ballot box and deposited our ballots. Stopped by Dollar Tree and searched for nylon bags (in with laundry bags) but none were available. Shipment arrived today and needs to be processed. A clerk took my name and phone # and will call me when / if it comes in (they never did). Needed to get John some tooth picks too, but they also did not have the kind I was looking for in the dental section.

I’m dealing with music for future Veterans’ Day celebration at the Senior Center, Nov 8, doing our patriotic and USA songs (13 of them).

Supper: Lasagna, chicken nuggets, and fried shrimp. Dessert: best part was the apple creation from last night, heated, and topped with vanilla ice cream.

Thursday, Oct 24

This morning, after an hour outside, John came in and we set up to give him a much-needed haircut. I managed to do a nice job in just over a half hour. We are both very pleased.

I started the morning by soaking dishes, which need to be loaded into the dishwasher. Called in the count for chairs for music today. I also responded to a horribly constructed telephone evaluation of my yesterday’s quite positive experience dealing with a customer service representative at Genworth Life about our Long Term Care Insurance Policy. The prices keep increasing yearly (as expected). We hope never to need it, but it is important to have. This year’s amount is going up from last year’s by $1,093.97 to a total of $4,740.95. Official notification will not arrive in our mail until Nov.20th, but I received the amount, when inquiring, as I was setting up an automatic electronic funds transfer to go from our checking account directly to the company, without having to write and send a check.

I’m going to Hearthstone today. We had a huge turnout (a baker’s dozen) and a large audience who enjoyed singing along with us.

This evening we are attending a talk at the Kittitas County Historical Museum presented by Harriet Baskas, “Washington on Wheels: Odd and Innovative Transportation Ideas from the Pacific Northwest.”Here’s my discreetly obtained from my lap, video of the lecture, put “unlisted” on YouTube. Please be careful how you distribute this. Just watch it for your own pleasure and education.
Washington on Wheels: PNW Unusual Travel Modes

Friday, Oct 25

John completed his normal early morning outside activities. I worked inside on mine but only made a slight dent.

RSVP’d “no” to David Bederman’s “legacy” lunch/lecture in Atlanta, GA at Emory University. David was the son of Sandy, my main geography professor at Georgia State. David was a specialist in Law of the Sea activities.

I went to the scholarship luncheon meeting on campus. Met our new member, Sarah Feeney and mom Bonnie, (missed meeting her baby). She was sleeping and I forgot to look in the carriage on my way out. I was there early, so I could leave for all my appointments in town.

Today’s offerings were good, especially with a second story view of falling yellow leaves. We had turkey chili with beans, topped with shredded cheddar cheese, Mini-Fritos and a small chunk of cornbread, there was a salad, but I didn’t have any because of the greens included, and a sugar cookie for dessert.

From there I went to Safeway, to get colas for John on a special 4 for 69₵ each (2-liter bottles). Then on to the $ Tree to look for wooden tooth picks for him. Our dental hygienist gave him fancy mint flavored things. Nothing at all was there, so still looking.

Left there for the bank to pick up my 4 copies of duplicates of our checking account checks so I can VOID one, which has all the routing numbers and account number on it to send to Genworth Life Insurance with our request for an Electronic Funds Transfer in 2020. That went smoothly and because I was there on a Friday, that is the bank’s day to put out donut holes next to the coffee pots for people to have. Today, it had more things on the food tray, so I took two large M&M cookies to bring home.

On my way home, I stopped at Bi-Mart and first looked in the dental section, finding no such wooden toothpicks, so I sought regular toothpicks in the grocery section and hit the jackpot. I had the choice of two boxes, only 99₵ each, one with 750 picks in it, and the other with only 250. Checking the difference, I found that the 750 were FLAT and the 250 were ROUND. The flat was definitely what I needed, and I was pleased. We figure the price difference (by type & number), is that there is a lot more wood wasted in the production of the round ones. Interesting. Flat is superior in this case, anyway. There wasn’t more than a dozen of the picks, if that, in the little sample container given to John by the hygienist, so this is a much better solution.

Once home, I was in the kitchen reaching for something in the refrigerator, the electrical power shut down without warning, right before 3:00, at 2:54 p.m.

I called two neighbors to be sure it was not just our isolated problem. Then I called the Kittitas PUD (Public Utility District) at 933-7200, shortly after 3:00 p.m., to report the outage. At that time, I was only the second person calling in, and no details were yet known. The woman I spoke with (Mary-Dawn) was only working until 4:00 in the office, and told me I could call back the same number and press “zero,” for updates. She registered our reported outage, also took my phone number for a call back when power was restored. I told her I would know when it was restored, because the lights would come on, but thanked her and accepted the offer.

Obviously, with no electricity, we had no connection to the Internet. Our landline was working until the battery needed recharged. I actually had other phones I could have used, but didn’t need to. I’ll present a photograph taken from a report on the web on Community Connect Kittitas County Facebook site, I received after the fact from a friend in upper county who had seen it, and saved it. Red oval shows where top of tree snapped off. Below right of that is the remainder of the pole, with the top upright on the yellow road lines. Cross arms are left hanging in the middle of the road, held up by the wires. Pieces of the tree are in the road, in shadow, around the pole. Hard to see – this was a copy from a ‘Facebook’ post by a PUD worker.Tree across the road that sheared the pole (orangeish thing on left) on its way down from the high winds. Spot is at a small bridge.

Obviously, we would have no access to the web or to lights when it gets dark about 5:30 p.m. Phones are working and that’s about it. My laptop is operating on its battery, so I can proceed with a few things, just not email, where I imagine there are several messages waiting for me from my several hours away today, 10:30 to 2:20 p.m. At the time I wrote that, I wasn’t even thinking that my batteries were not being charged without the electricity on. By the time I looked at my computer, it only had 1 hr. + a little left, so I turned it off.

We still have leftover frosted brownies made by Karen Eslinger from last night’s KCHM lecture. I wish I had a way of heating water to make coffee to have with the brownie. Perhaps I’ll just have cold coffee or a PowerAdeZero drink. These sorts of outages are usually fixed in under 4 hours, so we haven’t gone to “survival” mode, yet.

The wind is severely blowing. John checked when I got home and I think he said it was a high of 47. I think it was much higher on my drive home, and now outside everything is being picked up and thrown around. I hope he stays out from under trees with limbs that might fall on him. He is outside working now.

Here are the winds of the day: Don’t miss the 60 mph gust before 4:00 p.m. Broken pole is 3 miles from the airport weather station.

Whoopee! Just off the phone with Laura at the Cle Elum Clinic requesting mailing of a handicapped sticker okay for the state. CWU has eliminated the sticker for on campus only parking which I use about 9 times a year to access the Discovery Building in the middle of campus for IAF & geology science lectures, the first Thursday of each month (except summers). The only access close to the building, now is only handicapped parking, previously, there were 8. They recently switched all 10 parking spaces to only handicapped. I have the CWU Parking permit that is also required with the CWU h/c sticker, but it expires Dec 1, this year, and after that I am only allowed there with a state one, which it has to have a doctor’s approval, before I can get one from the vehicle licensing department. My CWU Emeritus Parking Sticker Permit does not expire until December 31, 2020.

Still no electricity. This is not as serious as people in CA are experiencing, so no complaints here.
We finally got our power back at 5:54 p.m., 3 hours after it went off.

However, friends on Game Farm Road, ¼ mile from the downed telephone pole still do not have power this evening. They must have re-routed ours, but those closest to the break will be the last restored. Many folks in the Kittitas, WA area (some on PSE, another utility district) were also without power. There are similar events, with road closures from dust, over a large area.

Saturday, Oct 26

Home today trying to pick up the pieces from yesterday’s power outage that affected so many people’s lives. I had other needs but those got put on the back burner while the power was off. Maybe it is time to clean up the wood stove, before winter does come.

I need to update my vaccine record at Medic Alert, and this morning’s mail brought my history, but I need to add to it, a flu shot I had Oct 7, 2019. Also, we both had notices for our upcoming wellness and chronic ailment appointments, but I have to call Monday to find out why the supposedly “attached” paperwork to fill out in advance was not included. That happened last year as well, and we had to fill it out in the waiting room (not the best place to do such stuff – having to rely on memory only). Feels like we already saw this movie. [Déjà vu, some would say.]

I had washed a load of dishes this morning, which were meant to be done yesterday afternoon. John has been out taking care of several projects, he is working on alternately. He says he is using different muscle groups so as to not stress any, and getting cramps later. I’m doing the same thing inside the house.

He took time to come in and fix brunch: Sausage patty, with blueberry/pecan pancakes, and bowl of cut canned peaches.

We both worked on afternoon projects, John’s mostly outside, except when a strong wind whipped up, and blew him in the door, because it got dark, and threatening, as if a hurricane was impending. Amazingly, it only sprinkled here, but others in town and in Thorp got a short but heavy rainstorm. After a while, the sun came out, the wind stopped, and John returned outside. Feels like the weather spirits went crazy.

I used the time he was out for the next couple of hours to upload the video I took Thursday evening.

Supper: Fried chicken thighs from the freezer (actually from Safeway’s cheap chicken Monday), with French fries, and beets. Dessert of a brownie and M&M cookies.

John’s in bed, and I’m on my way. Will continue in the morning working on this blog.

Sunday, Oct 27

Home today working on the blog and many other projects. John’s already come in and eaten leftovers for lunch, and I am having a late one.

I finished lunch and was cleaning up preparing to get back on the blog, and to set up washing clothes, when John came in and I asked him to allow time tomorrow to deal with some of the shoes we got a few weeks ago. Instead, he brought a large cardboard box to the front porch. There are 10 boxes of nice shoes and a black lawn-bag filled with casual shoes and belts. I recorded shoes and sizes to share with someone on Tuesday. Now I will just process these and return to it later after the blog is completed. I took the pix from the camera. Hope to complete this shoe and clothing home-finding process real soon now.

Completed the communication between a Thorp friend and a Naneum Fan friend; I was the intermediary.
Managed to start the clothes washer, finally, at 3:20 p.m. Now most is dried, but I need to empty the dryer and put in the socks and panties on a lower heat.

John came in and heated beef stew (from the freezer) for dinner. This was from a couple of months ago, but he hadn’t dated it.

Hope your week was fine.

Nancy and John
Still on the Naneum Fan

Not so Nasty News OCT 25th

Item #1: Change of Seasons thing

Early in the week, this was a WA DOT camera image from 4 miles west of Snoqualmie Pass at 8:10 AM after snow near the top. I checked about ½ hour later and it looked almost the same. Only difference was the headlights were turned out. Same cars and trucks, with the driver of the 2nd truck out walking around. Maybe he had too much coffee.
Later in the week there was an accident on the I-90 Vantage Bridge with a long clean-up time. Most recent was a semi-truck fire at the top of the Pass.
Not to be left out, limbs came down on the power line leading out our way. That was just before 3 PM. I tried to get Nancy to go to town to eat supper. Unfortunately, they fixed it before we could go. So, not only do I have to do something about supper, I have to get this posting finished.

Item #2: Sue inspecting Black Walnuts
When the wind blows hard, a lot of Black Walnuts fall. Because they fall on the gravel driveway there is a bit of work cleaning them up. So here is homeowner lesson #81.
Do not plant things that make a mess where you do not want a mess.

Item #3: Colors

The Cherry tree leaves are mostly a drab green/brown mix. But we have a volunteer tree that has yet to produce fruit. However, it does generate a nice color as cold and dwindling sun hours shut it down.
I noticed the color is similar to nearby Strawberry plants.
The image below has the berry plant image imposed on the tree leaves. I wonder if, when the tree does have fruit, will they be strawberries?

Here is another interesting combination of colors: Lichens and rock.The rock is made of white and black minerals. The blue-green lichen is about the size of a 50¢ coin. I’d like a better focused image. Wishes!
I’d also like to say something about these things but I can’t because I don’t know anything.
The Wikipedia entry for Lichen is quite long, with lots of photos. Link

Item #4: Cartoon to ‘list Song’

I saw this cartoon. Seems like some of us have survived more than 5 ends of the world. The singer, Billy Joel took a crack at making a list in the late 1980s, and in 1989 gave us We didn’t start the fire.

His list goes from the year he was born (1949) to 1989. I’m a bit older so I’d start with WWII’s D-Day. We could add events from the last 30 years.

Item #5: Science pun

There is not an image for this one, so the one here is just because.

And the old saying about a picture being worth a thousand words.
This is helpful because it allows us to derive the unit of feminine beauty.
It is written of oh so beautiful Helen of Troy that she had “a face that launched a thousand ships”.
From which we get the “Millihelen”.
Beauty sufficient to launch one ship.

More, in case you did not like that.
“You never appreciate what you have till it’s gone. Toilet paper is a good example.”
“When I was a kid, I heard Excuse my French just after a swear word… I’ll never forget my first day of class when my teacher asked if any of us knew any French.”

And that, for this week, is the not so nasty news.

Nature’s landscapes are beautiful

Starting off this week with the Harvest Moon.Harvest Moon over Kittitas Valley by Lise McGowan. (Mt. Rainier)

Monday, Oct 14

Today’s display is another Sandhill Crane photo from my friend, (see last week’s pair fly over):Nice take-off, Sandhill Crane from a lake in a local park in Michigan, captured by Maude Buzcek, my friend since 6th grade.

We are scheduled to be at the foot doctor in Ellensburg at 8:30 a.m. for a scheduled toenail cut. We picked the early time so we wouldn’t have to wait a long while. Hope it’s is worth the effort. It only took 15 minutes, once the doctor arrived, but we were accepted as we walked in, and placed in a very cold room.

Once home I received a call from Yakima Heart Center’s, Medical Assistant, Kim that Dr. Krueger wants labs drawn prior to my Nov. 5 appointment. They’ll be in the mail. All scheduled for 10/29, with my other standing order, so one blood draw will satisfy all.

On the phone with Vanguard getting help on Date acquired, form 1099-B on the Turbotax form. It’s missing on my form. Turns out it was because the dates acquired were split in several places, and impossible to divide. I just used the skip over and accept anyway, without.

I delivered messages about the passing of my friend to the people in the community who were involved with her, after receiving the okay from her son. I called Brad & Burke with my credit card # to pay my invoice for the recent winterizing checkup. The receipt is being mailed to add to my records.

Crazy busy with tax form and getting help from John. He is not good at writing down the volunteer trips, although they go on the hard drive as he schedules them. Log book in the car is another matter. He says, next week he will explain the term “log” as used in this sense.

Tuesday, Oct 15

Here is a beautiful way to start your day, with this autumn leaves photo of a lake in our town. I love the water’s reflection.A winning photo of Carey Lake by my friend, Evie Schuetz.

I’m staying home all day to work on taxes, so I need something beautiful to view.

Got through to Brandy at Umpqua bank and she’s ordered what I need for Mortgage Interest that was not properly sent on a 1098 Form. It should have come by Wednesday, but it didn’t. Maybe Thursday. Still wasn’t back by Friday, but they checked another source in their bank records, and found the information I needed.

Also, I contacted Vanguard, and know how to digitally transfer funds from our checking account to investments portfolio, securely, at no cost. I need to show the procedure to John. We have been too busy to sit down and go through it.

I’m working on taxes, but took a break to follow a noise outside and saw John mowing, or actually going or coming to where he did now. He came in & fixed us a brunch: Ham, eggs, and a blueberry-pecan pancake.

I soaked and loaded dishes. Dishes we dirty and dishes we clean. Continuing process.

Called Gerald Gordon and remembered to wish him a happy 70th anniversary. Quite an accomplishment.

Supper tonight was roast beef, mashed potatoes and gravy, with corn-on-the-cob.

Wednesday, Oct 16

Speaking of Big Horn Sheep – This will put a smile on your face to see the smile on this face. A beautiful animal “captured” by Tony Bynum

My day started too early, and I never got a nap this afternoon.

Wrote ladies at ECCC about clothing removal & my friend. Haven’t heard back yet. Have contacted another church group, and I hope this may work out.

I fixed a protein drink for lunch and got ready for Food Bank music.

Afterward, I went for my INR at KVH. The INR was 2.4. I shall go for recheck in 2 weeks, when I can combine with the labs for my Nov 5th visit with my Cardiologist.

I was having trouble with my TurboTax Premier software, being unable to get the tax form to insert correctly in the step-by-step procedure. I finally got through to an agent who was very helpful. The first 15 minutes of frustration had to be spent with a robot spelling out our long email account, and be understood. I was speaking clearly and slowly. God, I hate those front end answering machines when the end is a person I could have started with originally.

I’m very tired of tax preparation. I realize now I should be picking a day every month for putting receipts into an Excel spreadsheet so the tallying is easy by keeping every month up-to-date, throughout the year.

Supper was leftover roast beef, potatoes, gravy, and adding asparagus+cheese, and pears.

It’s raining again (and has most of the day).

I worked a lot on mileage for medical and volunteer service tonight. Need to add John’s WTA mileage, and that will push it up higher on our volunteer service donations. Mine is mostly music, occasionally 3 days/week, on the 3rd week of the month.

Thursday, Oct 17

All normal morning inside and outside activities.

I’m going to Pacifica this afternoon for music, and this evening, we’re going to the Kittitas Audubon meeting to hear a talk on Habitat Restoration, by Scott Niccolai. I’ll film it.

I picked up 2 crispy chicken sandwiches from Burger King on the way home for our early supper.

For the KAS Meeting, I took my dues and camera with tripod. We got there early to set up.

The meeting was late starting as the expected talk was preceded by a half-hour club meeting.Scott Niccolai-KAS, 10-17-19, Habitat Restoration

The presentation was Habitat Restoration by Scott Niccolai, who has been a Habitat Biologist with the Yakama Nations for 28 years, spoke about the Kittitas Valley/Yakima River watershed. He has had projects most recently in the Teanaway, the Yakima, and other smaller streams. The emphasis will be on fisheries, but he’ll have lots of other information (and pictures) on birds and wildlife to share as well. After all, we are all interconnected! Scott is a Central Washington University graduate, with a Masters in Environmental Management from Evergreen State.

Scott Niccolai-KAS, 10-17-19, Discussion

Ending this with reminders of our wealth of knowledge acquired this evening:The Swift Story (you’ll have to view the video to learn of), and the connection to our town.
A few riparian restoration issues (left), with Gloria Baldi greeting Kenneth Hammond. Ken was a professor when Scott was in college here.

Friday, Oct 18

We spent the day working on taxes, mostly on mileage for medical-related services and for WTA volunteer activities.

We had a brunch of ham & scrambled eggs with cheese, toast.

John completed his normal outside activities. I worked inside on mine.

Supper was left over (from the freezer) pizza. Dessert will be cookie dough frozen pie, (now thawed).

Saturday, Oct 19

This morning, I’m uploading a video to YouTube from Thursday night. That ruins the web connection for other activities, so John worked outside packing his truck with garbage bags to take to the transfer station (aka the dump). He paid $22 to dispose of 400#. Also went by Knudson’s to buy some concrete blocks for his loading dock he’s building – for uses to be determined. Maybe load the big lawn mower for travel. Otherwise, the volume behind the front will be a depository for busted concrete and some of our over abundance of rocks. As well, he bought more Senior Equine pellets and some crushed corn, Black Oil Sunflower seeds, and a 50# salt block with Selenium {a necessary trace element; toxic in excess}.

I went to Briarwood to play music and we were served a fantastic food fare: Lee made chicken soup with carrots, celery, huge pieces of white chicken, with noodles; salads (fruit salad, orange Jell-O chiffon, and a green pea and ham salad. Jo Ellen gathered the items on the dessert table, contributing several kinds of cookies she made (ginger, peanut butter, sugar, and someone else made chocolate chip, another made little white fancy pinwheel sugar cookies with orange and black sprinkles (for Halloween)—the whole room was decorated for the last day of the month, and Lee added some homemade pumpkin bread and banana bread to the dessert table.

On my way home, I went by Fred Meyer for a special 3-day sale on Red Baron (Supreme) pizza, Jimmy Dean (Regular) sausage rolls, and Progresso Chicken & Wild Rice soup. I bought the limit of 5 each of the pizza and the sausage for $1.99 each, and got the soup for 99₵/can by buying 8 (otherwise, $1.49/can). Our survival pantry is good for a major earthquake or snowstorm. I also bought a gallon of vanilla ice cream because we are almost out. It rained on me coming and going all the way home, where it had not yet rained, but did later!

Been working some on job announcements after ignoring that process need for 2 days.

Sunday, Oct 20

John drove to the Kittitas Highway to load 6 wood pallets, being given away. Not that we need them. Projects?Search images for wood pallet projects and see multi-possibilities.

Returned to fix us a brunch of a blueberry/pecan pancake, peaches, maple syrup, and shaved (thinly sliced) ham, from a rugby ball-shaped mass inside a plastic package. How do they do that?

Now he’s out picking up Annie-poo and cutting back raspberries; and the rain has resumed.

We thought Izzy might be stopping by for the bucket of pine cones today, but that is looking less likely at mid-afternoon.

Supper crafted by John was a chicken & veggie casserole with elbow macaroni, mushroom soup, and French’s-like crispy fried onions. Dessert after the cookie dough pie is eaten, will be a fruitcake from Christmas past John found while cleaning out the chest freezer.

Hope your week was fine.

Nancy and John
Still on the Naneum Fan

Not so Nasty News OCT 18th

Item #1: it’s in the mail
Today’s mail brought a voter’s pamphlet (what’s going on) and the printed ballot for Washington’s ‘vote by mail’ proceedings.
Years ago we went to a polling place, stood in line for about 3 minutes, saw a few neighbors, filled in a ballot, and went home.
Now we get to do this at home, beginning about 3 weeks prior to the vote day.
We can drop our completed ballot in a box near the County’s courthouse. While this is about 12 miles away, we go past about 3 times per week. Thus, no big deal.
There are not exciting issues this year, in our State. Every few years we get to vote on keeping “stealth” taxes off of the car registration fee. This is one of those years.

Anyway, our voting is an easy process. There is almost no fuss compared to some other states. Some day all states will do it this way.

Item #2: Land on the move

A word common now in the news is unprecedented , such as this:
Major Southern California fault line eyed after study shows unprecedented movement. See:
Garlock Fault

The first line of the article is:
A major southern California fault capable of producing a magnitude 8 temblor started to move for the first time in 500 years following a series of earthquakes in the Mojave Desert over the summer, . . .

It has moved before, so perhaps “unprecedented” is not the correct word. The Collins Dictionary defines unprecedented as “never having happened before.”
For synonyms, among others, it gives: exceptional, unusual, and ground-breaking.
My choice would be ground-breaking.
Think about it!

Item #3: colors

Winning photo of East Lake Ainslie, Nova Scotia, submitted by Verna MacMillan. See here Hope they don’t mind. Contest now closed.

My home town of Clarion PA calls itself the Autumn Leaf Capital of the world. The 2019 festival (over now) was the 66th annual. I was there for the 1st.
Now it is a 9 day affair, internationally recognized, and sponsored by Allegheny Toyota. Don’t know when Toyota got involved. This seems to be a car sales place in Franklin, a town 27 miles west of (and nothing to do with) Clarion.
Search using images for “autumn colors leaves clarion_county” and you can view many colorful pictures – some from the area.
The ones with the tall brick building, with clock, are of Clarion. We lived about 4 blocks (1/3rd of a mile) from that building – the Court House. Our school was another 3rd of a mile away.
Google Earth will show where Clarion is, with the River to the east and north. The green area is mixed forest, hardwoods and conifers, and very pretty in autumn.

Item #4: You may ask, how did I get here?

{a reference to a song titled “Once in a Lifetime” by Talking Heads}

on the banks of the Derwent River at Howden, south of Hobart, Tasmania
Only the first part of the link is about this photo.

The driver was a woman in her nineties. She, and the next guy are very lucky people.

Item #5: Too fast – 131 mph
charged with driving under the influence, driving with an open container of alcohol, reckless driving, speeding, fleeing and eluding …

he went airborne

I hope it was his car, and not stolen. I suspect neither car or driver will be on the roads any time soon.

And that, for this week, is the not so nasty news.