Photos, dogs, dancing, history

Sunday, Jan 7

No CPAP – Oximetry for Jan 7: SpO2 low 83, 9 events <88% with overall avg., 91.3%. Avg. low SpO2, 88.7%. Pulse avg. 53.8, low 47. Slept 8 hrs 24 min.

This morning, I got the photos to Google to send to the AAC about the event on 1-5-18, Jeopardy & Scrabble games day with lunch. I started working on dishes, and it took me until very late afternoon to be able to start the dishwasher.

I printed 19 copies of a back to back page for the last two songs of our Jan-Feb music to add to the audience copies. Now just need to get John to staple them onto the current booklet. Then I have to arrange the music for my book, and for Charlie & Gerald’s book, and reach Maury by phone to check his music (and the 3 changes from 2017 Jan). Neither Gerald or Maury have a computer or access to email.

We posted the blog at 3:44 p.m.

We celebrated with a piece of chocolate cake, following our lunch (sausage, eggs, peaches, and cheese toast).

Late afternoon, Jeri Conklin on Facebook posted a set of photos of our co-owned Brittany, Cedaridge Kip’s Camelot Shay Tre’ JH (call name, Daisy). She is only one “leg” away from an AKC Senior Hunter (SH), with SH title to add to her name. The photos were taken during a training session this morning, which included two honors, a stop-to-flush, a point, and a retrieve to hand (pigeon). Jeri was the handler, and hubby Kurt, the photographer.Daisy – all 4 feet off the ground running; & Finn (brace mate) too.Daisy on her 1st honor on the point of her Weimaraner brace mate, and her 2nd honor with Jeri. Jeri’s just kneeling with her hand on her hip, watching. The handler cannot talk to or touch the dog stopped on an honor. Daisy on point brought a comment on Facebook (“very nice photo!”) from David A. Simons, from La Puente, CA, who connects to her through his dog he raised as a teenager, FC Simons Ruff-Shod O’dee. He asked after seeing this photo if he was in her pedigree. Yes, he definitely is (on the sire and dam).

Ruff was born 8-28-74 (which coincides with our move from Iowa to Idaho). He achieved his Derby points in the field with David handling (Derby dog competition goes to 2 years of age). That trial was held at Las Flores Ranch in southern California. David and his son, Jurgen, with Cody, his retriever from the Simons breedings.

Ours and Daisy’s connections to David is via Ruffy (the name we called him). We moved from Iowa to Idaho with 2 cats and a Brittany, Lovely Wistful Lady (Wisty, named for her wistful eyes). That year, we joined the Inland Empire Brittany Club (newly forming regional club with AKC) based in Spokane, WA, 90 miles from Troy, ID, where we lived. Through the IEBC, we met a field trainer, Dan Richmond. On Dan’s string was Ruff. John ran him in Amateur events, and we bred to him starting in the 1980s. When he was 9 yrs old, we bought him from another owner (after David).
I showed him because his conformation was excellent and he should have been a Dual Ch (field and show). I went on the Montana circuit with Carol Pochardt with Ruffy and others of our dogs and managed to get a bunch of reserves (2nd place, no points) because his teeth were quite worn (nothing wrong with the position of his bite). Judges didn’t like it, however. While he had show placements (and points) in his younger days, he never finished the Ch. But, he produced many Duals when bred to our Dual Ch. Sirius Sashay (born in 1978). Their breedings created Brittanys with excellent temperament, conformation, and hunting abilities. One owner of more Duals in that family than any other, is Michele Pelle. She still has semen stored from her DC/AFC MC’s Brett Jared O’dee from Shay & Ruffy. Simons dog is on both sides of Daisy’s pedigree.

Carol Pochardt, mentioned above, lived in Moscow, ID (13 miles from Troy) at the time, and she took Ruffy through Shoot-to-Retrieve trials, for many wins, and he competed in the Western Regionals in Oregon, with a friend from WA who handled GSPs. Ruffy had a nice long life and made it to Ellensburg, WA with us. He lived for 2 more years to almost 17, and was in good health and still hunting (and seeing and hearing), whereas Shay lost her hearing, but not her scenting abilities.

By the way, the Tre’ at the end of Daisy’s name is because she was the third Shay named thusly in our Cedaridge lines. Daisy-Stop to flush before another bird found (from her point above) with a retrieve to hand (pigeon).

Monday, Jan 8

No CPAP – Oximetry for Jan 7: SpO2 low 83, 8 events <88% with overall avg., 92.9%. Avg. low SpO2, 90.4%. Pulse avg. 53.5, low 50. Slept 8 hrs 35 min.

I called Larry at Safeway Pharmacy about Stephen’s selling me two bottles of 100 mg Allopurinal, for $26.54 each. I put the one for 90 tablets on the counter, but I had the 180 in my pocketbook from my last purchase there. I just looked it up again, and found for 180, the GoodRX price is $24.30. That was approved by Larry 3 months ago when a clerk did not want to honor the Discount Drug Card. So, theoretically I was affected twice this time, and accepted the extra bottle (I had only ordered ONE), but both were there. I have not opened them, and realize I cannot bring them back. I asked him if I could have difference returned in cash or credited to my credit card. He agreed, and a few days later, I received cash for this calculation: $26.54 – 24. 30 * 2 = $4.24. It pays to stay on top of all medical charges (including doctor visits), and whether the insurance was billed properly.

I went to SAIL today, and did some other things. It was supposed to snow today, but didn’t. I hope it doesn’t decide to, tomorrow.

I contacted Umpqua about ending the mortgage payments in Feb., but got nowhere, except probably it will just happen in February and quit being taken out of our checking account. We’ll later have to arrange with the Assessor’s Office how to pay the taxes, or just get them and pay them when the bill comes. It has been going into escrow and taken care of. End of story happened later with a postal notification from the bank, about the reconveyance fee of $106.61 to reconvey the ownership to our name, when the mortgage is paid. We have 30 days to get a certified check to the Spokane office to finish the procedure.

I checked on line and found this: The reconveyance fees will vary according to the state that you are in, but they are currently in the range of $50 to $65. They do receive upgrades every once in a while, but there is no defined schedule as to when these fees are assessed or changed. Your lender or lawyer may charge a slight premium for the convenience of paying the county registrar on your behalf. You can check with your local municipality to see what the state charges if you think that you are being overcharged by your liaison.

Also, Obtaining a Reconveyance When a Mortgage is Paid Off
In the state of Washington, when you pay off a mortgage, the lender must issue a deed of full reconveyance on the trust deed that secured the mortgage. The reconveyance deed is a recorded document that eliminates the lien that was recorded on the property. After the reconveyance is recorded by the lender, the property does not have any deeds of trust and is considered “free and clear.” The county recorder sends you the reconveyance after it has been recorded. After you pay off a mortgage in the state of Washington, your lender is required to issue a deed of reconveyance within 30 days of receiving the payoff. This shows that your property is free of encumbrances.

I plan to call the Assessor’s office to see what the charge for a reconveyance fee is for our county.

Check all medications to see what Costco will charge for them after finding out we can use the GoodRx price there.

I started tonight with John’s Tamsulin which is ready to run out and found that for the past 3 months we’ve paid $15.20/30 capsules. At Costco, we can get 90 capsules for $20.18. WOW!
His HydrocholoroThiazide 12.5 tab for 90 is actually cheaper at Super 1, so I will just keep a watch on all our meds. My Allopurinol 100 for 180 tabs at Safeway is $24.30 & at Costco $22.81, but at Costco, the added value is we get 2% back on all purchases there!

Here’s a happy note to add to our blog; check out the video below: Dog sledding reminds me of our old dog, Tailwind Talisman (Brittany), carrying a tennis ball up a flight of stairs, dropping it, and retrieving over and over again (in our Troy, Idaho house).

Fun on the snow [~80 seconds ]

Tuesday, Jan 9

No CPAP – Oximetry for Jan 8: SpO2 low 84, 7 events <88% with overall avg., 90.3%. Avg. low SpO2, 88.1%. Pulse avg. 54.0, low 50. Slept 8 hrs 23 min.

I dropped by the Historical Museum and paid our membership, and received this quarter’s Newsletter. On it is the list of talks, and we will go to several of them: Nick Zentner (geology), Allen Aronica (native Kittitas Indians), and Kelsey Doncaster (local history). I have put those on the desktop calendar hung on our kitchen wall. Nick’s is first, March 29. Allen lives near us, and plows our drive as needed, and we share things. Kelsey was my student.

Today was the first day of ballroom dancing instruction at the senior center (Ellensburg Adult Activity Center). You can see the rest of the people participating in the videos below, except for me, the videographer. I did practice some of the steps with the teacher (from CWU, Adam Meyers) and with my friend Evelyn (not in the pix above), but in the videos.

Video Jan 9 Ballroom Dancing Part 1

Jan 9 Ballroom Dancing – Fox Trot & Music Part 2

Wednesday, Jan 10

No CPAP – Oximetry for Jan 9: SpO2 low 85, 4 events <88% with overall avg., 91.6%. Avg. low SpO2, 89.6%. Pulse avg. 54.6, low 50. Slept 7 hrs 41 min.

Food bank, SAIL, and go by the Gym for Klaire (a probiotic).

I took my Amoxicillin at 2:00 p.m. during the middle of my exercise class in preparation for going at 3:00 for dental cleaning by Tracy. I received a nice report. Now to get insurance to pay for special prescription for fluride added toothpaste.

I paid my dues on line for the Association of Pacific Coast Geographers (APCG) retired rate, but it showed me my extra donation I normally make, but did not tally it into my total paid, so I was only charged $15. I guess it’s okay, as I won’t be attending the conference and luncheon I used to attend in past years to honor the women’s recipients of scholarships. Others in the profession still teaching and receiving part of the costs for attending conferences can pick up the slack. This year’s meeting is farther away than I want to drive, in Chico, CA. I did attend a meeting once when it was held in Olympia, WA a couple years ago.

Thursday, Jan 11

No CPAP – Oximetry for Jan 10: SpO2 low 85, 5 events <88% with overall avg., 93.2%. Avg. low SpO2, 90.7%. Pulse avg. 52.9, low 47. Slept 7 hrs 45 min.

We awoke to 5” of snow!

I called Cle Elum KVH office to request a refill for John’s Tamsulosin 0.4mg capsule for 90 to go to a different place (Costco Pharmacy in Union Gap). Costco’s price is $6.73/mo.

I completed washing dishes this morning. Weather is nasty. John went along with me to EBRG to help with the set-up and take down of chairs, and music. He reads in an adjacent room, but can still hear our wonderful music.

We had an amazing amount of people there today, 14 (Nancy, Gerald, Charlie, Minerva, Tim & Roberta, Maury, Kevin, Dean, Anne, Manord, Laina, Amy & Haley). We sounded pretty good today and had a very appreciative audience (as usual). Haley (our 4 yr. old mascot) charmed them at the end, with singing, Hey! Good Lookin’.

I got so busy with the snow and John and going to Safeway for some good sale prices that I forgot to go by my dentist’s office to pick up my prescription toothpaste they recommended to me. Now I have to wait until Tuesday after Monday’s MLK day. Oddly, CWU takes Monday as a holiday, and so has activities on Thursday the week before. Many, if not most, of the students here are from Puget Sound area and go home on weekends and, especially, for 3-day weekends.  

We went to Bi-Mart after playing, because John saw in their newspaper flyer they had sunflower seeds for $6.00 off. With all the birds coming in daily and depending on us, we loaded up. I got some gel for my eyes (severe dryness prevention), some Fisherman Friends cough lozenges, plus many wire holders for Christmas ornaments (for a dime). I hope to use them to add extra silver bells to my bell wreath, which we use for keeping time to the music during December. Picture was in previous blog.

I wore my boots with a big flat sole and rubber bottoms, and really needed then in the parking lots where we stopped. I also needed them to get to and from my vehicle, at home, even with all John’s shoveling this morning.

Friday, Jan 12

No CPAP – Oximetry for Jan 11: SpO2 low 85, 4 events <88% with overall avg., 92.7%. Avg. low SpO2, 89.8%. Pulse avg. 53.7, low 49. Slept 8 hrs 40 min.

I called Cle Elum to see if the prescription for John made it to Costco. We were going in either case, but yes, it’s there.

We went to Costco to pick up my glasses and get some meds for John, at an incredible savings over Super 1 pharmacy. $15.20 there for 30 days supply and at Costco, where it’s $20.18 for 90 tablets!!! (through a GoodRX coupon). The only place in Ellensburg, honoring that is Safeway, and it is higher priced there.

We’re back from Costco, with good news. I have my new replacement glasses, the right eye still is not corrected to the same strength as the left, but it is a little better than it was. It may well be that that right eye will have to have its film removed with a laser, but thus far, it is not blurring yet, as the left eye did, and had to be lasered Oct 30. So, I will wait, patiently. I was given new eyeglass holders that can be folded up (easy to put in a shirt pocket), and, when one is done using them, one can return the glasses into the protective case. I guess you could call them a collapsible eyeglass case. I’ll have made a collage to show the concept, in case you are a reader who has never experienced such cases for eyeglasses. I had never seen one. Mine are black, but I chose to find some colorful images on the web to use for a demo picture. Also my eyeglass frames are much nicer and daintier than the one pictured. My lenses do not have a frame completely around them but sit on my nose piece with only the top and sides as part of the frame.

John’s year old glasses are covered with fine scratches, so while there, we also checked on the cost of lens only, if John wished to replace his. The Mt. Rainier trail was especially rocky and dusty (workers made more dust) and John was there over a dozen times last summer. The standard “wipe on your shirt tail” procedure is a poor choice in all the grit. Even lenses-only are a little pricey at $160, and the clerk said the company might reject the frame too, and you’d have to buy another. We were hoping they could remove the protective film from the glasses, but apparently that is not an option there. Ten years ago our local provider did this, but we don’t know if the current glasses are made in a different manner. They are from Costco Optical.

Saturday, Jan 13

No CPAP – Oximetry for Jan 12: SpO2 low 84, 8 events <88% with overall avg., 92.9%. Avg. low SpO2, 90.6%. Pulse avg. 52.8, low 50. Slept 8 hrs 23 min.

I’m trying to figure how to attend a wedding Mar 10, in Vancouver, WA, that requires at least a one night stay.
We spent an hour before brunch taking all the meat off the rotisserie chicken we brought home yesterday. We packaged up enough chunks of white meat to add to salads for a month or so of Wednesday lunches that I carry to the Food Bank, every Wednesday. The rest we nibbled on while working, and some will go into a pan to cook to remove the fat, use the broth, and have some base for casseroles.

Sunday, Jan 14

No CPAP – Oximetry for Jan 13: SpO2 low 86, 2 events <88% with overall avg., 92.8%. Avg. low SpO2, 90.1%. Pulse avg. 54.2, low 50. Slept 8 hrs 43 min.

Morning started with dishes cleanup, animal feedings, email review, overnight news and oximetry review and capture, checking weather (we had a bright spot of sun on the hill behind us, but no longer). It’s going to be another dreary overcast drippy roof snow-melting day and week. Some of the ice on the back patio concrete melted a little and John was able to remove. Temperature is 37°, misty, with only 1.5 mile visibility. When we awoke it was 4° in the town where John was born, Brookville, PA, and where his cousin almost 100 yrs and her daughter live (in separate houses).

Phew. After making lunch, John’s been working on outside chores and me inside, plus trying to finish this week’s blog to get out tonight. I just finished loading the dishwasher I had started yesterday.

Finishing up the blog and ready to turn it over to John, for editing and putting onto WordPress, but he is also busy fixing baked chicken thighs for supper.

Hope your week was fine.

Nancy and John
Still on the Naneum Fan

This Week’s Not So Nasty News {TW’NSNN}

. . . . from John, awaiting Nancy’s draft of her week’s news.

Item #1: Shallotte River Swamp Park

Recent cold was sufficient to freeze the surface of lakes as far south as Charlotte, NC. One of the peculiar characteristics of water is that as the declining temperature nears freezing, the density increases. Thus, ice floats, acts as insulation, and the underlying water does not freeze.
For an air breathing animal this presents a problem, even for one that can stay underwater for an hour.
The alligator’s solution to this issue is to stick its snout out of the water, let the ice accumulate, while almost all of its body is in the water below. If you ever wanted to Grab an alligator by the snout, an ice-over such as this was is the time to do so .

When warmth returns and the ice melts the alligators are back in businees. Let go of that snout.
No one mentions how long this ice thing can go on.

Item #2: Trickle-down economics
Some economists have argued that reducing taxes on businesses and the wealthy in society stimulates business investment in the short term and benefits society and the poor in the long term. Might work.
Here is an example, from the rich music aficionados of Australia. At the “Lost Paradise Festival” 30 miles north of the Sydney Opera House a multi-day event enticed many well-heeled folks to buy new camping gear — tents, coolers, chairs, sleeping bags — for the occasion. After the music was over the revellers left, and left the stuff.

Photo here is captured from the video linked to there. A strong wind was blowing the stuff around. Still, a positive ending, I think.
Item #3: Why does this woman smile?
Saudi Arabia has for the first time allowed women to go to a stadium and watch a football match.


Item #4: Just when you need it the most

The weekend brought 8 inches of snow to Cuyahoga County in northeast Ohio.
My dearest sister lives there.
She has determined that her snow blower works.

Item #5: Hay truck too high

Sarah Hancock was covering the Santos Tour Down Under cycling race when a well stacked hay truck came through the finish line. Oops!
Other than that …
Riders, out in front, were not hurt.
Adelaide makes news

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

First week of the New Year!

Monday, Jan 1 Happy NEW YEAR! & Super Moon Seattle’s view of the super moon with the Smith Tower in the center. That is the > 100 year old building my grandfather, John Benjamin Wilkins worked as a carpenter, lived in West Seattle, and began raising 3 children there. My mom was the youngest born in 1914. Then they returned to GA and raised 5 more children.

No CPAP – Oximetry for Dec 31: SpO2 low 82, 3 events <88% with overall avg., 92.5%. Avg. low SpO2 90.7%. Pulse avg. 57.4, low 50. Slept 8 hrs 18 min.

We spent the day on chores and the blog. Late getting it published, but we did… after 10 o’clock PM.

Tuesday, Jan 2

No CPAP – Oximetry for Jan 1: SpO2 low 85, 5 events <88% with overall avg., 93.5%. Avg. low SpO2, 90.7%. Pulse avg. 57.4, low 52. Slept 8 hrs 38 min.

My exercise class was cancelled today, so I did not go to town, for pharmacy items. I have much catching up to do on our Jan/Feb music for our Fiddlers & Friends group. I succeeded in finalizing the playlist, but will need only to run 19 copies, back to back of two pages, and attach to the audience copies from last year. Saves a trip to town and just costs a little for printing and only a few pages of paper.

I called Fairpoint customer service and they changed our email address to the new joint one, so we will receive our bill monthly via the G-mail account. It had been going to the old one that has faded into the Aether. While the neighbors were making noise late Dec. 31st, we lost contact with that old friend. So sad.(John says: “Since the heads up way last summer, Nancy has notified hundreds of people and sites to make the change. 3 cheers for her.

I wrote an email to my previous cardiologist’s nurse, Colleen Meyer, about a Cardiologist replacement for me. I await her call or email notification. John says she may be off this week. She’s usually very prompt in communication.

Wednesday, Jan 3

No CPAP – Oximetry for Jan 2: SpO2 low 85, 2 events <88% with overall avg., 92.9%. Avg. low SpO2, 91.8%. Pulse avg. 56.3, low 51. Slept 8 hrs 53 min.

I worked more on Jan/Feb F&F music. I took out time to make my lunch to take to the food bank, so I wouldn’t have to eat the pasta and dark green salad. It was tuna fish/egg salad & lettuce.

I met Kristin and Casey at the Food Bank. She brought back John’s WTA green hat she’d borrowed last spring, and stayed for our music and lunch. We had a nice visit.

I left and dropped off a loaf of bread to a gal who is visually impaired and doesn’t drive. I need to see if I can find her some white rolls and buns. She is a few blocks west of my trip from the Food Bank to SAIL exercise class.

Went on to SAIL class and we had a full house. My FitBit recorded 25 minutes of vigorous exercise. Good after the layoff for New Years. I picked up groceries and pharmacy items for John at Super 1, for me at Safeway, and took a box, with cut-out handles, for my groceries. A decree by the EBRG city communists council requires stores to charge 5¢ for 1-time use plastic and brown paper bags. Super-1 gives a 5¢ discount to those with their own box or bags, and that also saved the 5¢ tax. That is a dime in my pocket.
We use the paper bags for kitchen waste that composts. So, at Costco we bought 500 for <$8; or 1.6¢ per bag. These actually fit the kitchen space better than the large ones from the grocery store. Three cheers again! An aside, by John: The City of Seattle started a fee of 1.75¢ per ounce on soft-drinks. That's $1.18 on a 2 liter bottle. The item price for house brands is 90¢ to $1.20 before tax. The bean counters of Seattle expect to raise $15,000,000 this year to spend on their trendy projects. The Seattle Costco put a sign up telling members where to go to nearby Costco stores just outside the city limits. No extra fee there. We can see that $15 M not materializing. Link to story

On my way home I traveled the route near the airport and dropped off the WSJs we read and give to a business student, and a block away, I picked up a bunch of coffee cans. A gal was collecting these in her pump house, and her husband runs a business in Ellensburg, near where I travel to and from the Food Bank, so he is the transfer point. He met me to transfer these to boxes in the back of my car. The ice was treacherous in their parking lot on the north side of the building and made me consider carrying along my trax during weather like this. (I did later in the week).
Here is a photo from The Free Box Facebook site that grabbed my attention and I asked John if he wanted them. He has a unique use for them.
{Begin John} The use involves strawberries. In the photo, the two upper berries are called Cabot. The other one, with the top of a Quarter showing, is a different variety — very nice. These are from 2014. Cabot berries, being large and heavy, tend to lay on the ground. This makes for contact with organisms, both fungus and crawly things. I want to experiment with 3 or 4 ways to keep them off the ground, and keep irrigation water off the berries. [Remember giardia? I do.] Among other ideas, I want to cut the end of the cans out, sink them into the soil with extra fill, and have a single-plant raised bed. I’ve ordered new plants for delivery after March 26th. {End John}

Now I’m back to working on music. Worked much of the evening, with a break for a great chicken casserole dinner from John (brown rice, green beans, mushrooms, & with help from a can of chicken soup).

Thursday, Jan 4 Happy Birthday John !!

No CPAP – Oximetry for Jan 3: SpO2 low 87, 3 events <88% with overall avg., 93.8%. Avg. low SpO2, 91.9%. Pulse avg. 56.4, low 50. Slept 8 hrs 34 min. Wow, yesterday was good, but this is the best ever!

Go to Rehab. John went along to help carry things, and to read his WSJs.
We took cashews by to Louaine.
John made brownies from a box. A cup of chopped cashews made them special. We served some warm with a dollop of ice cream. Happy birthday! (photo snagged from web)

More time with music creation.

Friday, Jan 5

No CPAP – Oximetry for Jan 4: SpO2 low 84, 4 events <88% with overall avg., 91.9%. Avg. low SpO2, 89.8%. Pulse avg. 56.8, low 50. Slept 8 hrs 31 min.

I had to put trax on my shoes to walk to John’s car today. Mine had very little gas, and we are driving it to Costco tomorrow to get my new prescription glasses ordered and we’ll buy gas while there at a much lower price.

My sole purpose for going to town was to be the photographer for the AAC event today, Game Day, with a luncheon of Elaine Bleggi’s multiple cheese & macaroni casserole. It is so good.They served it with a wonderful looking spinach salad, but I cannot have spinach because of its vitamin K content & my being on Coumadin, so I took my own Iceberg lettuce/tuna fish/egg/ pistachios/Bleu cheese salad. John told me I should have had a few bites, and upon reflection I agree.

Because of the ice, many people cancelled. They had fixed food for 50, so I brought some home for John, in my container I took in for my salad. He had stayed home to, among other chores, put gravel down on the walkway to our cars, others: re-positioning a solar light, working on a broken fence, and providing water for the horses, feeding deer, cats, and exercising Annie.

Here are more collages of our AAC event. We had two tables and after lunch played Jeopardy that table 2 won, and Scrabble, which table 1 (my table) won. Everyone enjoyed the food and fun, and the temperature had gone above freezing for leaving. Each table started with the same number of letters, and we replaced them as we used them to put on the board. They were face down on a table so one couldn’t see the letter or the points worth. Also, it helps to have Scrabble players at your table to know all the rules for doubling up, and having successful words.
We got clever with our positioning of the letters off the board.

Happiness expressed by the winning team !! (minus one man). Sandra, Curtis, Marilyn, Catherine, Debbie, and Nancy. I do not remember what was so funny at the time, but maybe it was Katrina, balancing on two folding chairs using John’s camera.

The link below will go to all the pictures (some more than once) taken that day on John’s camera. I’m adding this link here, because otherwise people not on Facebook will not be able to see them. The above collages are pretty small, maybe even in this blog.

I have a lot more photos of the event (see above link), but I will send them to the AmeriCorps gals and they will put them on Facebook on the Ellensburg Adult Activity Center’s site. If you are on Facebook, search for it and review the photos and activities there. It’s a wonderful resource for people 55 and older, and in some cases, of need for exercise, people who are younger are allowed to participate in activities for their health. Every first Friday of the month is a lunch with some neat activity. We have people on walkers and in wheelchairs that come to the center. The local HopeSource bus delivers people with their wheelchairs or walkers (free of charge). They will come out as far as needed. A friend of mine rode the bus for 2 years 30 miles from Ellensburg to Cle Elum to visit her husband in an assisted living home there. They pick a person up at their home, and deliver them to doctors, to the grocery store, or other special needs.

I intended to stay for the SAIL exercise, but it would have been over an hour wait, so I ran one other errand in town, and left. I drove back through Kittitas and picked up some wool knitted hats — not that we really need more hats. Still they made a late birthday present. They were free, from the clothing bank and food pantry, there. They’re only open Fridays, at 1:00 for 2 hrs. I walked in and said I wasn’t there for food but just looking for the winter pullover hats for my hubby. The lady in charge said she had a box and would bring them out. (Clothing is in the unheated back of the building and too cold in this weather to allow people to visit). She left the box by the entrance in case others needed one.

I drove by a house off No. 81 Road. We haven’t learned why it is called that. There is also a No. 6 road, but not others. I picked up a
Seattle dressed teddy bear from a Buy Nothing East Ellensburg/ Kittitas Facebook site member, Shannon. I’ll give to Katrina (AAC Director & Seattle Seahawk fan, for their special decorated truck).

I finished the songs (PDFs) for our KV F&F group, and emailed them last night. I worked on them much of the afternoon and evening.

John took the Mac ‘N Cheese I brought home, added more cheese, and pieces of cauliflower to go along with slices of a breast of chicken we bought yesterday, and he fried it with a special sauce with spices. Nice meal to end a busy day.

Saturday, Jan 6

No CPAP – Oximetry for Jan 5: SpO2 low 85, 4 events <88% with overall avg., 92.1%. Avg. low SpO2, 89.8%. Pulse avg. 57.8, low 49. Slept 8 hrs 37 min.

Working on pictures from yesterday, the blog, and getting ready to drive to Union Gap, to Costco. The weather is beautiful (cold) but sunny. John has already fed the cats, deer, and now went out to take care of the horses. We’ll have sausage, eggs, toast, and peaches for brunch and leave. Driving my car to fill up with $2.65/gal gasoline. Cheaper by 22¢/gal 50 miles away, and take off 4% of that too as a returned reward by the VISA/Costco card.

More deer (the twins and mom) arrived for treats, and Sue made it in for her morning cat food. The other two outside cats, Woody & Czar ate earlier.

We ran out of sun at the Military exit and I pulled off I-82 to grab my camera for the view of fog in all valleys ahead of us. We ended up driving more slowly through thick fog in several places.
In the photo, under the near fog is Selah, and after the gap is Yakima. The next ridge is 7 miles south of the gap, and we could not see any of it.

We made it to Costco and was it ever crowded! Checkout lines went down the aisles for a long way. Perhaps the first Saturday of a new year and after Christmas is not the best time to go.

I started my trip through Costco at the Optical department and had to wait until five people went ahead of me, but I occupied myself by coordinating people as they arrived, and told them who they would be following. They need a pick a number system for times like today. The two clerks were very appreciative of my efforts. I was appreciative when Daniel got to me (he was my original helper when I got them in November), listened to the story, took my new prescription for my right eye, and the glasses and said they would do it at no cost. I’m still surprised at that service, but pleased to accept it. They will regrind my right lens in my regular glasses and my sunglasses (identical frames). We will return in about a week to pick them up.

John and I went around the store picking up the few things we needed.
Nice they have wide aisles, because of the crowd. We went past a Sears store on the way to Costco. The large lot had, at most, a dozen cars. This may be the last year for Sears and K-Mart (same owner). Say good bye. We made a quick stop at Walmart just before leaving the metro-Yakima area. Walmart is working hard to adjust to the changing retail scene. Very busy, today.

We eventually made it to the medical supplies part of Costco. I asked the pharmacists about my GoodRX coupon to check if they accept them. I was happy to find out they do, if I print it out and bring with me. I am used to doing that already, in Ellensburg. On one recent drug John just refilled for $15.20, we can get it there for $8.73, so I need to transfer several prescriptions there, after I check them out on line, and as John said to me tonight, I need to spread the word. I’ll start here. If you need to know more, just email me. Or, you can go to and check it out yourself. I learned about it from my cardiologist’s nurse several years ago. It has saved us many dollars. You don’t have to go through your insurance and can use a credit card (such as I have), the VISA/Amazon/Chase Bank, and get an additional 2% discount on medicines. I cannot use that at Super 1 Pharmacy, because their charges report as a grocery store, not a pharmacy.
These medical things are convoluted, complicated, and tiresome.

I left John in the checkout aisle through the medicines and walked down through all the aisles to the farthest one (near the entry, and went back to tell him to come there. I’m sure we saved time but by being so far away from the office, we paid for our TurboTax program, and the “runner” never made it down before we were packed and gone. We got home and realized we didn’t have it. It will be our word only, so I tried to call to report it, because we were charged for it, but it is an empty box they replace after you have paid for it. According to the web presence, the office was supposed to be open until 6:00 tonight, and I called at 4:45. No answer, so I searched for some way of writing customer service an email. I did that, and hope someone responds and believes me. Otherwise, we’re out $54. + tax.

We came home to many chores and finally had our supper. It was a salad, with iceberg lettuce fixed by Nancy with Bleu Cheese dressing and pistachios, with smoked turkey leg chunks, apples, cauliflower, bread croutons on his and Cheezits bits on mine.

We continued working separately on our computers until dessert (a brownie with cashews, and vanilla ice cream). Now it’s bed time.

Sunday, Jan 7

No CPAP – Oximetry for Jan 7: SpO2 low 83, 9 events <88% with overall avg., 91.3%. Avg. low SpO2, 88.7%. Pulse avg. 53.8, low 49. Slept 8 hrs 24 min.

We have been doing chores and now getting ready for brunch, and to finish publishing this tome.

We checked the weather in Ohio and Pennsylvania where John has relatives. The serious cold just ended and the temperature is rising from mid-20s to low 30s. Freezing rain, sleet, and wind are on the way. That is through Wednesday Noon. There is an old joke about people living in such situations:
Q: What’s is the difference between people living in XYZ-town and a U.S. Penitentiary?
A: Folks in the prison know they are being punished.

Hope your week was fine.

Nancy and John
Still on the Naneum Fan

This Week’s Not So Nasty News TW’NSNN}

. . . . from John, awaiting Nancy’s draft of her week’s news.

Item #1: Cat things …

Buying stuff on the web usually gets you a cardboard box. With a large shed, I just tape these boxes shut and store them. Waste not, want not. However, most folks don’t have that option, so what to do?
To diminish the glut of the things, there is help, namely the cardboard box cat castle. Apparently there is a YouTube bonanza of how-to videos, books, blogs and seminars. The Public Library in Spokane, gets boxes and so holds “Build Your Cat a Castle” events. Get busy.
Chris Poole’s cats, Cole and Marmalade, with their multiroom gingerbread house. Photo: Chris Poole. I think from Tampa. [in the WSJ ]

Item #2: Six inches …

Floridians in Tallahassee saw snow for the first time in 28 years. Resident Laura Donaven was able to build a 6-inch tall snowman.

Item #3: A twit tweets, or something…

I’ve been pumping gas since before I could legally drive. Years ago, we were passing through the Great State of Oregon and needed gasoline. I got out of the car, removed the filler from its holder, and was about to insert the snout into the car. Then an attendant rushed to me and informed me of my criminal ways.
No wonder I think the State is a strange place full of crazy people.
This year, in small population(<40,000) areas, Oregon is allowing "self-serve" pumps. People are going bonkers: "There is a reason we require gas attendants to have a pumping license. Many people don’t have the training to use gas pumping machinery, and it WILL end in many unnecessary deaths from explosions . . .”
I guess that was on Facebook. Is that a tweet, or a twit?

Item #4: It looks nasty, but … . . . . See the dog?

Sea foam forms when storms churn a mixture of seawater, dissolved salts, proteins and algae and any other dissolved organic matter that happens to be in the water.
It is not toxic, but it is dirty, sometimes brownish.
Watch, at this link.
Sea Foam

Item #5: Jokes for those getting old …
My birthday was Thursday, this week. “Old age” jokes are easy to find, so I give you two.

The first one I found funny because a certain male relative wet some flour in the middle of our kitchen floor. It was a long time ago, and I think he was 5.
After a medical exam, the doctor says to Fred “You are in great shape, how do you explain it?”
Fred says, “I don’t drink, or smoke, and the Lord takes care of me.”
Really, what do you mean?
So Fred continued “Among other things, when I get up at night to go to the bathroom, He turns the light on for me.”
The doctor, wondering about the man’s mental state, mentioned this to Fred’s wife.
She said: “Oh! He’s mostly fine, but that does explain who’s been peeing in the fridge.”

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
Now, that same male relative has been looking into family ancestry and has complained about poor records and confusing names. There is also this: about a block from our childhood home, there was a cemetery. Neighborhood kids, including me, cut across there frequently. This story fits:
About dusk, a teen takes a path that goes through a cemetery. He hears a repeating sharp noise, and investigates. Slowly approaching the sound, he sees a pale old fellow chiseling on the front of a stone.
The kid says, “I thought some awful thing was going on when I heard you.”
The old fellow said, “Awful is right. The idiots that carved this misspelled by name.”

Item #6: Got ice? …

Hop on a plane heading NE from Boston. Soon you will pass over the Bay of Fundy (place with big tides), a short swath of land, and then the Northumberland Strait. Then you come to Cape Traverse on the SW shore of Prince Edward Island.This is the “land cradled in the waves” {Abegweit} in the language of the native Mi’kmaq.
The storm that we are now weary of hearing about brought waves to Abegweit and the waves brought ice. Some of the ice was little bitty pieces and some was big blocks of ice. It, the ice, piled up on the property of Philip Metcalfe. He took a photo.
Now, what was it that you complained about having to deal with this week?

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

Last week of the year!

Sunday, Dec 24

No CPAP – Oximetry for Dec 23 SpO2 low 86, 8 events <88% with overall avg., 93.1%. Avg. low SpO2, 90.5%. Pulse avg. 57.0, low 51. Slept 8 hrs 36 min.

Blog finally published late afternoon. Nice phone call with Seivertsons in Eureka, CA

Nice phone conversation with John’s brother Richard in San Jose with Kit waiting for several of the family to join them. Their Christmas is all week, with some family in Florida and not back until later, so they will have several Christmas celebrations; another later this week.

Monday, Dec 25 Merry Christmas!

No CPAP – Oximetry for Dec 24: SpO2 low 85, 10 events <88% with overall avg., 92.0%. Avg. low SpO2, 89.5%. Pulse avg. 56.7, low 50. Slept 7 hrs 29 min.

Here are some Christmas bells in a wreath we have been using for accompaniment with our music group for Christmas songs, when bells fit in.
We didn’t do much today.

Tuesday, Dec 26

No CPAP – Oximetry for Dec 25: SpO2 low 85, 8 events <88% with overall avg., 91.9%. Avg. low SpO2, 90.6%. Pulse avg. 58.2, low 53. Slept 8 hrs 35 min.

Tonight about 5:00 we drove a few miles south on snow-covered roads with ice beneath to view some incredible lights.The house and buildings are 240 yards from the road and lights begin there. Some of the lights make animals and there are real ones also. John was driving — blame the bumpy ride on him.

Entrance on Brickmill Road

The Driveway

Wednesday, Dec 27

No CPAP – Oximetry for Dec 26: SpO2 low 87, 4 events <88% with overall avg., 93.5%. Avg. low SpO2, 91.1%. Pulse avg. 57.0, low 50. Slept 8 hrs 36 min.

I went to the Food Bank for music, took my salad, and we played for 1/2 hour. From there to SAIL, and then home.

Thursday, Dec 28

No CPAP – Oximetry for Dec 27: SpO2 low 83, 2 events <88% with overall avg., 93.3%. Avg. low SpO2, 91.4%. Pulse avg. 90.5, low 50. Slept 7 hrs 32 min.

Musically, we were locked out of Hearthstone because of the bad flu bug that quarantined all residents to their rooms, so we did not perform.

John drove to town for his new 6 yr driver’s license [$54], and went shopping at two stores. The State claims the license costs $9 per year, but if you die (or quit driving) before the 6 years is over, we don’t think you get any money back. John will be 80 if he gets to use all of this one. He thinks people over 80 ought not to drive.

Friday, Dec 29

No CPAP – Oximetry for Dec 28: SpO2 low 84, 6 events <88% with overall avg., 92.0%. Avg. low SpO2, 89.8%. Pulse avg. 57.7, low 50. Slept 8 hrs 35 min.

The first morning chore was for Lic: BEF4009, John’s Crosstrek 2016, I called parking at CWU, added it to my Emeritus parking sticker, and changed our email address to the new one.

During the night and now, we’ve had light rain coming down on cold air and snow. Nasty mix.

Iced in, postponed Dr. Davis until afternoon, and to KVH blood draw for standing order INR & for BMP. I heard late afternoon my readings are where they are supposed to be. Fine.

Looking through old e-mails and wondering who some of these folks are, and why we were in contact. Toss some. Send to others. Progress.

John is making dinner, and will be making Roasted Candied Pineapple to take with Candied Walnuts to tomorrow’s Raclette. I’ll put warmers in my boots when I leave. They are supposed to last for 9 hours. (they did). We will leave @ 10:30 to get there by noon, with our firewood, food, and ourselves. I’ll have my camera to document the experience. We may luck out on the weather. Today looks great. Yesterday would have been not so nice, and certainly getting to Interstate 90 would have been difficult.
Straight over the mountain and river to the vineyard is just 24 miles, and by road about 65.

Saturday, Dec 30

No CPAP – Oximetry for Dec 29: SpO2 low 82, 7 events <88% with overall avg., 92.5%. Avg. low SpO2, 90.7%. Pulse avg. 55.9, low 50. Slept 7 hrs 33 min.

I called into Super 1 Pharmacy, HydrothoroThiazide for John and have to pick up Tuesday with my Allopurinal at Safeway (better price using GoodRX coupon, without insurance).

Be at White Heron at NOON for the annual Raclette for the volunteer wine grapevine pruning crew, and their families.

We traveled the hour and 20 minutes to our favorite winery and landscape, above the Columbia River, between Quincy & Wenatchee, uphill from Crescent Bar (and West Bar with the Ice Age Floods caused ripples in the sand.  Cameron & Phyllis Fries are the owners of this winery and vineyard.  The event was held to honor and give appreciation to the volunteer wine grapevine pruners from last spring (along with their families).  As in previous years, this year’s lunch was a very Swiss, Raclette. This is a Swiss event consisting of cheese melted and served on boiled potatoes or bread. Pickles and pickled onions were common. Maybe a sausage. We have all of these and more.
Raclette is pronounced [rah-klet’]. Raclette(French, from racler, to rake, or scrape), [Nancy says, racler is pronounced, ra-clay with a rolled r] originated in Valais but is made elsewhere in Switzerland and France.  Cameron Fries reasons that Raclette was made before the current political borders were made, such that Valais would have been part of the House of Savoy, and thus of the Holy Roman Empire.  The House of Savoy extended considerably into what is now called France.
This was traditionally a pruner’s lunch in the vineyard with potatoes and cheese over a grape-wood fire. Now this is done by most folks indoors with an electric heater and various gizmos. The vineyard and real fire ambiance is missed, perhaps unknowingly by many.

Here is a brief video description from Cameron, from 4 years ago:

Cameron Fries Describes Raclette

We arrived just before noon and unloaded firewood that John had packed Thursday, before our ice storm. Good thing he did. It was tough getting into his car to start it today because of 1/2 inch of ice.John unloads Jessica; Cameron picks up and stacks; John throws pieces up. [Jessica, the Crosstrek, is named after a song.]

unloading the firewood – 33 sec

I watched the unloading process for a short while, and went to the house to visit with Phyllis, and offer help. She didn’t need any, so we just visited. First, I had to re-meet Altessa, their collie, and give her treats (cashews) to have her go through her sit, down, and stays. She’s a cutie. Phyllis showed me her large Jade plant, and I did not think to pull my camera out for a photograph. I need to remember that the next time I’m over there. It is certainly more of a tree than our guest bedroom’s crawling jade plants. John keeps them alive, but they suffer from no care. She gave me a Jazz Christmas music book they were looking to re-home. I’ll add a song to our next December’s music for our Kittitas County Fiddlers & Friends group. We added Jingle Bell Rock this year and Let It Snow!

People didn’t start arriving until 12:30 p.m. and we were already back outside setting up around the bonfire. Cameron took a van down to the winery and brought that up, and loaded other things from the house. At this point there was bright sun and a 48° temperature. Neither lasted, but the fire and wine helped.
John did take our photo. He hates my camera, but it was the only one I had because his does not take video. I didn’t take too many videos or pictures this year, as in the past. It wasn’t long after getting back outside, I had to retrieve one of the 2 coats I brought along. Once a breeze started, and the sun went behind a cloud, I had to change coats to a much larger, heavier one I also had thrown into the car.

From 2014 Raclette write-up: “The cheese used on their device over the coals is a French cheese purchased in Auburn.  This type is especially needed for cooking over coals. “Raclette” ovens are sold, which utilize a squarer “Swiss Raclette” cheese, which has no crust and is specifically made for the oven use.” I think one of the pruners has such an oven, maybe we could switch to that next year? We had trouble with the smaller square this year over the bonfire with the unique holder at White Heron, for holding over the fire’s coals.

COMPARISON OF ROUND AND SQUARE RACLETTE CheesesLeft is the round version – Right, the square, note the splitting, because the rind is not as thick to hold (or as good to eat)

This video above, with Cameron explaining “Raclette” is from the Raclette held for 2013 (but on John’s birthday 1/4/14) with the round cheese, which I think does a much better job over the fire than the square ones meant for raclette ovens. And, this video below shows a nicer version of scraping the cheese over the potatoes; see farther below for 2017.

Nicely Filled Plate: Raclette on Potatoes

These following videos are from this year, Dec 30, 2017 and pictures are farther down the page:

Altesse Talks to Erik

Cameron Set up Coals for the Raclette and Connected Cheese
Set Up

Cameron serves

Tom serves

Next is a short video around
the crowd, eating

Tom Serves Cameron

55 more seconds of eating to end the party, Dec 30, 2017
More eating

Here’s a collection of photos, in collages: Phyllis, Cameron, Nancy ^ & ^ Nancy, John, Phyllis (2015)
After it got colder, I retrieved my heavy coat from car, see above.
John greets Lynne arriving & Phyllis joins with a bottle of wine.Altesse greets Linda & Bob from Newman Lake (north of Spokane) – and we have the wine ready – Roussanne. Fire making the required coals! That’s my blue pot on the rocks with Pineapple and Walnuts, warming. Cameron visits with Linda, and Bob with Tom. Top: Around the fire: steamed sausage pot (top right), cheese on the right, and potatoes. The blue pot has the pineapple.
Bottom: Goat cheese covered in cranberries, Brie, candied walnuts, Bleu cheese, salmon, peanut butter fudge, chocolates; not pictured, onion & garlic breads, red cabbage salad, and apple/spice frosted cake.

Regarding the pot-cooked sausages, my preference would be to roast them over the fire, as Phyllis demonstrates below, in a previous year. She needed a longer roasting fork. See below photo.
John’s found this on the web, and is thinking about next year.John visits with Erik; . . .Phil with Phyllis.

Bob, Lynne, Mark, Cameron, Audrey, and Raclette cheese holder
Activity around bonfire (below)Cameron, Bob, Margaret, Linda, John, wine, woodFrom set up to eat up. Left, in house (with wasabi peas, pickles, sesame crackers, cranberry wrapped goat cheese, Brei, cutlery in napkins, and plates stacked; rt, finished product, by the bonfire.

Sunday, Dec 31

No CPAP – Oximetry for Dec 30: SpO2 low 85, 1 events <88% with overall avg., 92.5%. Avg. low SpO2, 90.4%. Pulse avg. 58.6, low 52. Slept 9 hrs w/ > 3 hrs off oximeter

I was miserable last night after returning home at 5:00 p.m. and I seem to be having a reaction to being around the bonfire and smoke for 4 hrs yesterday. I have been allergic to smoke since childhood. It must have been accentuated from being sick for 5 weeks with bronchitis from a bacterial infection. We had problems with the cheese for the raclette being the square kind with a thinner rind than the old thick round ones we used for years. Maybe we should lobby for a raclette machine if the rounds are no longer available. Might change the ambience, but could give us fewer problems, and we could sit and visit around a big dining room table.

Cat is in my lap.

Winding up the year and pulling old stuff from messages on the account we lose today. This is just one of those things:

The Banana Dance

Found this with the story of Evonne Ellis, WTA crew leader we’ve known for 5 years. She used this to warm up muscles for people on WTA work parties. A couple of years ago, John was getting an award and I had this big stuffed banana – a bowling prize.
We arranged for a slot at the WTA Volunteer banquet. It was my old Banana I won at the Banana Belt bowling tournament in Lewiston, ID, and had in my Geography office the entire time at CWU since 1988.John with his WTA Carhartt Award jacket, Evonne with our Banana Award, from my past. Me with my prize for her. She’s on the right leading stretching exercises at the start of a WTA work party, and John’s setting up the tools in the background, to present the safety talk. A volunteer made the costume for her to wear.

Daisy, Cedaridge Kip’s Shay Tre’ JH and mom, FC KWK Windswept Guinevere of Camelot JH both received an AKC award today, the Achiever Dog award. A Facebook friend of Jeri’s looked it up and said, “The AKC Achiever Dog certificate program is designed to recognize those exhibitors and dogs who participate in multiple sports. A dog will receive an AKC Achiever Dog certificate when they have been awarded a placement or earned a qualifying score in three different sports.” Jeri and I figured it is for field, hunting, and show. (The JH after her name is for Junior Hunter, in an AKC Hunt test, and she is currently almost finished with her Senior Hunter title, and will proceed to her Master Hunter title. New Year’s Eve phone call catch-up with John’s sister, where the temperature is very cold. What’d she say? 5 degrees ? Ouch!
We are 31°F. here.

I quit my cleanup of the old email account tonight, at 7:30 pm. Tonight we lose any contact through there.

We have had to sit and pet our dog with isolated fireworks being set in the neighborhood. Not bad yet. I hope they stop before midnight, so we can get to bed. Hopefully, it is too cold.

We had a nice visit with our sister, Peggy, in Ohio by phone, and caught up on the week since Christmas, and on the cold weather and snow stories (55 years ago) from their memory of lake effect snow.
We are having tenderloin steaks tonight to start off the New Year right. They were given to us by a friend and are from her White British cattle.

We stayed up until 12:30 because our neighbor, in the woods across the creek, shot off fireworks. John found a 2+ hour web music set. We had the volume turned up on the “Best of the Kingston Trio”, and that helped. Further, there were songs we had not heard and John looked for info on the web while the music played. Annie was upset but did not freak out, and we didn’t have to put her in a crate. She was so tired she slept hard all night, not moving when we stepped over her.

Monday, Jan 1 HAPPY NEW YEAR!

No CPAP – Oximetry for Dec 31: SpO2 low 82, 3 events <88% with overall avg., 92.5%. Avg. low SpO2 90.7%. Pulse avg. 57.4, low 50. Slept 8 hrs 18 min.

Working on the blog today, finally, after a final week of notifying people of our changed email address. Not fun.
We sent very few Christmas or New Years’ greetings, but did get some via the US Postal Service. Thank you for yours.

Czar (Salazar) cat gone all yesterday returned this morning for his vittles. He must have been traveling. Rarely has he not shown up for food or water (twice/day) for 6 months, since arriving in the neighborhood. Makes us wonder.

Charging FitBit (1/2 down). 9:38 a.m. John’s going out to feed horses, and to announce to Woody that it is time to eat. She, too, seems to go places, but often is in the big hay shed or a smaller little building we call the Red Barn. It is not very red, if it ever was, after 35 years of being there. And it is not really very barn like. Oh well.

Now, as John went out, he had to break up a cat fight between the two male cats. Never a dull moment. Woody arrived, however, and I just fed her. Maybe the males had a tussle while we were at the raclette and the one cat stayed away yesterday. This morning they were at the front door meowing and I let Rascal (yes he is named properly) in and then fed two of the outdoor cats.

11:20 a.m. – Just loaded several days of dishes and await the cleaned results before we have our brunch. I’m hungry and ready. We’re having link sausage & eggs, and peaches. The temperature hasn’t risen to freezing/thaw yet, and won’t today. Still, it is better than back east and most of Canada.

John fixed a nice brunch and I continued working on this blog, mostly creating photos and collages to add from the Raclette.

Hope you week was fine.

Nancy and John
Still on the Naneum Fan

This Week’s Not So Nasty News {TW’NSNN}

. . . . from John, awaiting Nancy’s draft of her week’s news.

Item #1: Why not be helpful? …
A cute Christmas Tree, on a thin bridge, 300 yards from the center of Longview, WA.For the squirrels: The ‘World’s Narrowest Bridge’

It is a busy street. With the bridge, they don’t get flattened. That’s good news.

Item #2: Wyoming police are helpful …
Not quite like building a bridge, but still good.Item #3: Can you spell …?
This one happened awhile back, but it is still funny.
In Australia, a TV reporter on a downtown corner was asking questions of passerbys.
He asked a lady, “First and last name, please?”
“Erica O’Donnell,” she replied.
To be sure the station reported her name properly, he next said
“And could you spell – first and last?”
Without missing a beat Erica gave her reply.
F – I – R – S – T, she spelled. Then L – A – S – T.
Not too shabby. In a split second, early in the morning, while on a jog and with a camera pointed in your face – – could you do better?

Item #4: Does snow make you happy?
Puget Sound region (Seattle etc.) has had a “white” Christmas.
The claim is this is only the 3rd White Christmas [1 inch on the ground] in 100 years. (1926, 2008, 2017)
News station KOMO TV posted photos sent in by viewers. Here are 3, with photographer’s name or location:
Sylvia B., Kirkland – – George P., Jr. – – Helena in S. SeattleLeft and right, we have two happy beings. The one in the middle seems unimpressed. What do you think?
I’d mention all the traffic accidents this snowfall caused but that would not fit with the nature of this post. Also, I don’t know.

Item #5: Another snow story
Much has been written about the Erie snow, so I’ll just add a bit.
I was raised just 75 miles south of Erie, PA. There was a little snow there early this week. I found the story Tuesday afternoon when they had just 4 ft. 8 1/2 inches. There is more!
Here’s my story.
When I was in high school, we went from 75 miles south of Erie to near the town center. That was in the A.M.
Mid afternoon we headed back. The City is near the level of Lake Erie, on an old shore. The first mile south includes a 100 ft. increase in elevation. There is a steep little rise south of downtown, and then a continual climb for about 10 miles. From the lake it goes up about 700 feet.
There was no snow in Erie as we left. After the first bench, we encountered snow. About 10 or 12 miles south we had a foot of snow. A few miles on the snow depth was less, but snow was falling, and did so for another 10 miles. Then it tapered off. The last 55 miles was easy.
That was my first encounter with the Lake Erie “snow machine.”

Item#6: Ailsa Craig: Island and Onion
A few times in the past I planted onions. They didn’t do much and seemed not worth the effort. Now I plant them, just to see what happens.
A few years ago I read something about growing onions, namely, that there are short/medium/long –day varieties, and there are bulbing onions. The later are said to ‘bulb’, meaning there is a rapid increase in size and the onion will push soil out of its way.
I found a source for onions and lots of information at a place in Texas called

Dixondale Farms. They are 100 miles southeast of San Antonio.
An informative newsletter is here:
Bulbing, Bolting, splits

Ailsa Craig (aka Kelsae Sweet Giant) seems to be the largest. The tiny island off the coast of Scotland provides the name.The photo is for this year, but Peter Glazebrook (pictured) has grown a larger one. That and other large things

Now, about that symbol I put on the photo — yes, this one #. It is also used as a symbol for ‘number’, as in my Item #n labels. I was thinking of using ‘ lb.’ and, so, I looked it up. It apparently began with the ancient Romans and Latin. See:
libra pondo
There it will tell you ‘libra’ can be shortened as ‘ l b ‘ and then accessorised with a line drawn across the letters to highlght the use of a contraction. Poor penmanship and further abbreviation took over. The Brits have called it a ‘hash’ and it is now known as a hashtag (think Twitter), and has been used because it was put on keyboards and didn’t get much attention.
Thus, it was available.

Item #7: Remember William Shatner?
This should thrill everyone. Bill, or Captain Kirk as I remember him, is 86 years old. That great white and frozen neighbor to the north of the USA has awarded Shatner its 2nd highest honor.
And that, for this week, is the not so nasty news.

Ado about the season

Starting with our Christmas cactus (by John)

Sunday, Dec 17

No CPAP – Oximetry for Dec 16: SpO2 low 84, 6 events <88% with overall avg., 92.8%. Avg. low SpO2, 90.5%. Pulse avg. 56.6, low 46. Slept 7 hrs 46 min.

I stayed busy today on the computer. I spent a lot of time last night on the blog, and John edited what I wrote, but I still had stuff to finish this morning and he had stuff to do before putting it into WordPress.
Brunch was squeezed into the schedule. John finished with Word Press input just before 2:00. While waiting, I spent about 45 minutes helping a former student by proofing her resume and letter of application for a job. Still have connections to CWU after being retired for 7 years.

Late afternoon, I put my new computer aside and got on my old laptop to look for the story about my mother’s family reunion I wrote up a very involved web page for in 2012 after attending the family reunion that year. A woman (another Susan in the Wilkins family—my mom’s side) came out of the woodwork just in time, getting to me on the old email address, account we are soon losing (and which I still have to finish sending please change announcements to).
. . . . Telling the Susan Pate story:

My name is Susan Pate.  I am trying to research my 3x Great Grandfather John Wilkins.  I stumbled upon your reunion page on the internet from several years ago and am hoping that this email address is still a good one.  My connection to John Wilkins is as follows: His daughter Susan Mariah Wilkins (my 2x Great Grandmother) her daughter Minnie Tullulah Robbins is my Great Grandmother and her daughter Susan Mariah Mines is my grandmother.  I have a cousin in Patterson, Georgia that tries to help me with research but he is ill and cannot make the trips like he use to.   I do know there is a museum in Ebenezer, Georgia that has some of the furniture he made and also some of his tools.  That was where my cousin was going to go and take pictures for me, but I do not think he can make it now. I found an article on his furniture and a bit about his history but I cannot find anything on his parents.  The article mentioned he was married to a Rebecca Lavender before he was married the Mary Catherine Gnann.  Do you have any information that would help me to find his parents?   I appreciated any info you can give me. 
 Thank you,
Susan Taylor Pate

I’m grateful she sent the email before the end of the month. We have been communicating since, from the new joint account.
Here is the changed location for the story about the family reunion in 2012 — no longer accessed at but instead at at the following URL:
Wilkins Family History

PLEASE, if you get there, and want to follow any links to web pages, you will have to substitute for any references to

You can go there and see the picture of John Wilkins, whom Susan Pate is writing about above. Also, she mentioned the museum with “Big John’s” furniture in Ebenezer, GA. In the late 1990s, we had a Wilkins’ family reunion there that I attended. I did not have a digital camera then, or one with a flash, so I do not have any pictures of the inside. Hopefully, someone in the family will go take photos, so we can get them to all of us, and to Susan (in Texas). Both Susan Sykes and I have her email address.

Now we have had supper, and I have to finish processing the pictures I took Friday at the Let It Snow! event at the senior center. I know I won’t have a lot of time in the morning.

John is shelling walnuts again. He does enough each time to make 1 pound of halves and pieces. Then they go in the freezer. Our local grocery store sells such for $10, but they are available elsewhere for ~$6/$7. We’ve eaten some and gave some unshelled ones away. He thinks we’ll have 10 bags, when he is done. He plans to make some candied walnuts.

I have been working for a lot of time on the photos to send to the AAC via Google upload. I’m up to 48 of 64, and it is taking awhile. I left some in from John’s camera, without changing to ½ size, and it is taking a little longer, probably, but I didn’t have the time to crop them all and they didn’t need it. I only cropped the ones that had extra lighted windows on the side to concentrate on the center of the photo. After this upload, I will need to share and hope I come up with a link to send to the folks involved at the AAC for them to put on Facebook in the morning. (Jessi, did. She’s an AmeriCorps staff person, from Ellensburg.) I take photos at AAC events because the staff are busy serving and honchoing the games or crafts.

Here’s the link, if you might be interested. You will see a photo of Jessi with me and with her grandma, and others, in the pictures (she has on a huge Black Snowman hat, and I have on a Merry Christmas hat I received from my 6th grade friend (who is featured below in this blog with her photograph of an Eagle). I added the antlers to go with my Rudolph the red-nosed reindeer shirt.
Snow Party, Seniors – Dec. 2017

Monday, Dec 18

No CPAP – Oximetry for Dec 17: SpO2 low 84, 12 events <88% with overall avg., 91.5 %. Avg. low SpO2, 88.9%. Pulse avg. 56.8, low 52. Slept 7 hrs 51 min.

I called in John’s refill to Super 1 Pharmacy Levothyroxin and was able to pick up today, along with some groceries.

I called my PCP’s office to remind the doctor’s nurse, Diane, to put in the order for some blood tests for me to have to take to the doctor in Wenatchee tomorrow. The tests requested are Ferritin, Free T4, Free T3, Reverse T3 and a TPO. She called about 10 to say the labs were sent in earlier this morning, and I called the lab to confirm and got the best time to see my favorite phlebotomist. I showed up at noon.

I went to my SAIL exercise class today at the AAC, and came home via a couple of places and the last was to drop off a large bag of WSJs we share with a business student.

Home to work on my paperwork of medical history to take to my appointment tomorrow with Dr. Lisa Stone in Wenatchee. Thankfully, our weather will be good for travel.

Nice telephone call from my friend since 1977 who just had surgery on her ACL in her knee, and who is doing well. She’s had Brittanys from us since 1977 and lived in Moscow, ID at the time, so we traveled all over the PNW to shows and field trials with our dogs.

I sent a note to the music group {KV F&F} people to check on intended attendance. I need the count, because I have to report in Thursday morning to the facility where we are playing, so that they can haul arm-less chairs to the dining area for us.

Tuesday, Dec 19

No CPAP – Oximetry for Dec 18 SpO2 low 82, 10 events <88% with overall avg., 91.2%. Avg. low SpO2, 89.8%. Pulse avg. 54.2, low 50. Slept 8 hrs 9 min.

Our farrier is coming to trim Myst, at 9:30. I hope he is on time and it goes rapidly, because we have to drive to Wenatchee and be there by 1:05. He called to say he would be late, and we postponed it until another day.

Called Cle Elum for a Diane to tell me the value of the Ferritin and the range. Found out that and also that the FT3 had come in since yesterday afternoon’s phone conversation. The others were sent to Quest Diagnostics in Seattle, WA for analysis. One may take 3 weeks, says Dr. Lisa Stone today in our meeting, but I have already requested all the lab results be shared with her and my PCP.

We had left home, going through Quincy, WA. That’s the low elevation route. The Quincy area has major fruit and other crops. There is a large potato processor (fries, and the like), and fruit packers. We get the large Honeycrisp at Double Diamond. In 2012 the Amway Corp. started construction of a facility to produce Nutrilite Botanical Concentrate (such as blueberry, Echinacea purpurea, Echinacea angustifolia, oregano, peppermint and nettle). There is a long existing place that processes diatomaceous earth (locally available). Quincy’s new claim to fame, however, is that of internet data centers, known as server farms (cheap electricity).
As we approached Quincy it was cold and the sky above was dark with thick clouds less than 1,000 up. The many facilities were expressing pillars of bright white steam above the town. After Quincy the road goes down into the Columbia River canyon with steep basalt cliffs on the east side. The road has orchards on both sides.
This view is looking south. Note a stack of fruit bins on the right side, and the green of the trees. For us, the landscape was dusted with a thin coating of fresh snow that highlighted the physical features. I was particularly interested in the snow on the talus slopes, but unable to take a photograph of what I was seeing.

The Wenatchee River, from the Cascades to the west, enters the Columbia River about 15 miles north of the location of the photo. This coming together of major valleys has been a focal point of animal and human activities for centuries. We were headed toward the confluence.

And so we arrived at Confluence Health at 12:55 p.m. We were not seen until almost 2:00, but all went well. I never complain about waiting because I figure when the doctor stays with me, it is important and appreciated, and I realize someone is waiting to see her after me, so I hope they are patient & understanding too.

Our meeting.
The drive to Wenatchee to see a specialist (Endocrinologist),was a follow-up on my annual physical in Nov, and the finding by my new PCP doctor of a potential conflict with a heart med, Amiodarone, I have been taking for 7 years to prevent atrial fibrillations.  The medication is a large chemical that includes Iodine in its structure, shown in purple in the diagram. The Iodine gets cleaved from the rest and has to be processed by the thyroid.
Doctor Wood was concerned about my blood test results for the thyroid. The tests indicated an issue. The endocrinologist, Dr. Lisa Stone, looked at the test results, questioned me, and did a brief examination. The diagnosis was that I am fine, and we will just keep an eye on the blood tests in two months and then annually.
She also figures the labs on Nov 17th, were close to my sickness of 5 weeks, and likely affected the readings for T3 and T4. She also noted that the labs drawn yesterday about a month later were improved. My PCP had to request the referral, which he did, after I found from several friends and word-of-mouth that she was the preferred Endocrinologist in the area.

We were both pleased with the thoroughness and concern for my case and her detailed explanations. I captured about 10 minutes on video of her explaining my thyroid’s reaction to the Amiodarone, with a little hand-drawn diagram (below). The thin line on the left is indicating the link between the Pituitary gland up top and the Thyroid glands under my cute smile.Here is the location of the video:

Dr. Lisa Stone Diagrams What’s Going on with My Thyroid

Wednesday, Dec 20

No CPAP – Oximetry for Dec 19 SpO2 low 81, 9 events <88% with overall avg., 92.8 %. Avg. low SpO2, 89.7%. Pulse avg. 57.3, low 52. Slept 7 hrs 27 min.

Need to carry the unsalted cashews I got at Costco for Louaine, down to her.

Dark clouds east of us on my way home, and no camera. Got home and grabbed John’s Nikon to capture the western view from our back patio. These do not show the movement and color changes. Four photos this evening from our back patio (by Nancy). Mt. Rainier is 63.5 miles over there.

Thursday, Dec 21

No CPAP – Oximetry for Dec 20 SpO2 low 83, 10 events <88% with overall avg., 92.2 %. Avg. low SpO2, 89.9%. Pulse avg. 53.2, low 50. Slept 8 hrs 28 min.

Talked with Laura at Cle Elum and found out the system for communicating with my PCP is being replaced in 2018. I accessed it Tuesday night to report back to my PCP, Dr. Wood, about his referral to Dr. Stone in Wenatchee, and realized the email was keyed to our old email account; therefore, it was not posted properly to my doctor, and there is no way to change it now. I had already changed the system to my new account. So, I requested them tell his nurse my message about the meeting. Then I called Wenatchee and requested the doctor to copy me on the transcription of the notes to my PCP which she is sending him. I hope I will get it from one or the other, maybe both.

Now going through messages on old account to be sure I have all I need. 127 pages left to go. This is uncovering more lost info to recover before Dec 31. Phew.

Today, John went with me to help load all the music weight into the Pacifica Senior Living home. Here are the details:

Kittitas Valley Fiddlers & Friends Pacifica Senior Living 12-21-17
Christmas music with 16 people, plus an audience member on a set of bells.

The last song played is Steciak’s. I have not been able to find out much about the song, but it has been attributed to Larry Ungar.

The only You Tube I can find for sound of the music is by the Little Big String Band and was just published Nov 17, 2017. Here:
Steciak’s (Live)

Today, I was sharing information on Facebook with my friend since the 6th grade. We played guitars and sung folk songs together at events in Atlanta, and we also played our violins through high school in the orchestra. She rode and jumped horses, and we both were into photography. She has surpassed me with her photography. She sent me this picture of her large wall photograph in a Physical Therapist’s office in Michigan, where she now lives. Maude Buszek’s Bald Eagle in Physical Therapy Waiting RoomI grabbed these off her Facebook site for my collage. Sorry the eagle is not better focused in my collage. Later, I will get some of her bird photos (and her permission) to share here.

Friday, Dec 22

No CPAP – Oximetry for Dec 21 SpO2 low 85, 4 events <88% with overall avg., 92.8%. Avg. low SpO2, 90.0%. Pulse avg. 58.3, low 51. Slept 8 hrs 6 min.

Today, I went to town for meds at the Pharmacy, stopped off for some colas for John, and drove myself across town to the eye doctor. I had the technician, Diane, compare the prescription in my new glasses to the original, and they supposedly are ground properly. However, I’m not seeing the same clarity in my right eye as in my left. I have an appointment next Friday with my normal eye doctor, Dr. Bob Davis to evaluate what might be changed in the Rx to make my eyesight more balanced.

Finally, getting more into the Christmas spirit, locally and from far away.

Our neighbors raise pigs, and I dropped John off earlier in the week when I was going to town by myself, and he took several photos, but combined two into this one. This pink flying pig they found on Ebay and have put him up in their barn adjacent to the pigs and strung lights around him. The one on the right is a live big mamma. The babies are sold to local kids for 4-H animals that are then shown at the County Fair and other sorts of events. My uncle Henry had a big pork raising operation in rural Georgia. He had hundreds. Neighbors have several. Not even close to the same scale. And, in the south, mama and babies were inside, feeding was under a roof, and there was a large adjacent area that was fenced. Anyone going closer that 100 yards had to have their boots disinfected by standing in a shallow pan.

Saturday, Dec 23

No CPAP – Oximetry for Dec 22 SpO2 low 84, 15 events <88% with overall avg., 91.8 %. Avg. low SpO2, 89.6%. Pulse avg. 57.5, low 50. Slept 8 hrs 13 min.

Staying in the animals and Christmas spirit, here are two Brittanys.This is 2017: Alice Benoit’s Rose Marie ^^ 2015: my Daisy in CA

Interesting Facebook post from Debby Connors, who gave me a beautiful blouse (size L) made in France I am wearing again after my weight loss and am receiving many compliments on.

This photo below is Debby’s latest endeavor, where she is taking used feed bags and turning them into shopping bags. “Passed the cat test.” I asked her what feed, because our feed bags for birds & horses are not nearly as cool.Her answer to my question above: “This is from scratch for the chickens. I’ve read that many years ago folks would use flour sacks (yes from when flour was sold in sacks) and turn them into dishcloths, aprons, even clothing, that the manufacturers got word of this and began to purposely design their flour sacks with more attractive designs for their second use.”

I told her that I’m ancient enough to remember flour sacks, and I have a tie-around I use on John to cut his hair, made by my friend from a Thorp Mill Flour Bag material (purpose made, never used as a flour bag). I need to take a photo of it for our blog, next time I cut his hair. [ John says: I’m rural enough to remember cloth flour sacks. Type the phrase – flour sack art – into a search box (use Images tag) and have a look.]

We took pictures of the quail and the deer. Just the little buck and his mom came up to beg for treats, and the little girl, stopped off to eat some horses’ hay. The deer are not interested in the leafy parts but will pick the seed-heads out when they can. Sometimes folks will harvest Oats as hay, with all the seed-heads included. That has to be enclosed or the deer will tear bales apart and make a mess.
A pair of quail got our attention:Quail inside new enclosure; still inside with Junco outside.

This was John’s creation to keep the Asian Collared doves away from the little birds’ food dish. The quail are not stopped by the 2×4 inch openings. That’s nice. They will also share with the little birds, but the doves won’t.

Some more of the quail in this morning in for sunflower seeds.Nancy’s attempt to capture deer with John’s camera.Buck in his second year. The misshapen tip of the left ear is a family thing. We first saw this in an old doe about 10 years ago.

Sunday, Dec 24

No CPAP – Oximetry for Dec 23 SpO2 low 86, 8 events <88% with overall avg., 93.1 %. Avg. low SpO2, 90.5%. Pulse avg. 57.0, low 51. Slept 8 hrs 36 min.

Two calls last night to Ethel and Pat in PA, and one this morning to Marise in GA.

We’ve been working on feeding animals, accepting baked goods from our neighbor (a raw apple cake), and the blog. I’ve sneaked in a few good wishes to folks on email.
Now John finished editing my blog draft, and I’m proofing and adding comments left out before. He now has to enter the data into WordPress, and then I have to proof that, before we can publish it. Meanwhile, he fixed us an afternoon snack of popcorn and fruitcake. All we need is a fire to curl up in front of.

Hope you week was fine.

Nancy and John
Still on the Naneum Fan


This Week’s Not So Nasty News
. . . from John, awaiting Nancy’s draft of her week’s news.

Item #1: The Christmas Tree
Nestled between the intersections of two local roads in the Belhaven neighborhood of Jackson, Miss. is a Christmas tree. After growing tired of waiting for repairs to a street, an unknown resident placed the decorative tree inside a small pothole.
The festive holiday decoration had a sign that said: “Merry Christmas Belhaven. From our sinkhole to yours.” The sign was no longer there on Monday afternoon but the tree was lit up like, well a Christmas tree, to help drivers see the road hazard.

Item #2: U. S. Coast Guard duties
A turtle has been rescued after finding itself
tangled in drugs . . . literally.
The sailors found the loggerhead turtle in the Pacific Ocean last month, trapped in the middle of 26 bales of cocaine.
The bales, that contained over 800 kilograms of the drug, were strung together with rope which was tangled up with the turtle’s neck and limbs.

Cut the ropes, please

IMAGE SOURCE: Skyenimals for kids

Colored arrows in blue circles move to other pictures.
At the top, click on ‘BROWSE’ to search for other animals.
They also combine animals, such as a horse+giraffe.
The ‘Home page’ is upper-left as Skyenimals.

Item #3: Proof we don’t get out much
The image of the red faucet floating over a pool appeared on the internet this week. I thought ‘isn’t that clever’.
It seems half the people in the world have seen one of these and a whole bunch of people own one. You can too.

Pictures at this site

One for your yard?
They are even sold via Amazon – – – Who knew?

Item #4: Snow cancels Snow Day
Six Flags Great Adventures in Ocean County, NJ, planned a “Snow Day’ last Saturday. Then it snowed. The park closed instead.
This place is mid-way between NYC and Philly, 120 feet in elevation, and just 20 miles from the Atlantic Ocean.
Developers had to carve out a section of the very northern Pine Barrens.
The upside is that all the riff-raff go there to spend money, and leave the plants and animals alone.

Item #5: A right to be upset
When people build houses and otherwise intrude on wild things, one should not be surprised when some of them get belligerent.This appears to be from a small point of land between Lafayette Bay and Echo Bay, about 16.5 miles southwest of Minneapolis.
Coordinates are: 44.924694, -93.582278
Probably a really neat place before West Point Ave, houses, and boats arrived.

Item #6: Walk the dog, meet technical climbers
Just west of Seattle and Puget Sound is the Kitsap Peninsula(KP). It is almost an island, and would be, were it not for 3,500 yards of rock rubble left by melting glacial ice about 13,000 years ago. On the west side of KP is the Hood Canal, a melt-water discharge passage that carried water north into the Strait of Juan de Fuca and the Pacific Ocean. After the continental glaciers melted, Hood Canal became a flooded valley open to Ocean tides. And that’s important.
This past Tuesday, about 4:20 PM the tide was in (or high) at the time a young woman (Leilani) took her Great Pyrenees (Sage) for walk. Sage went down a steep embankment, couldn’t scramble back up, and Leilani went down to rescue her/him.
Had the tide been out, Leilani and Sage could have walked the beach to a spot about 500 yards northeast to an easy slope and up toward home. But Mother Nature, conspiring for the past 15,000 years had not cooperated, required that the lady and her dog needed rescued.
First, the firefighters from Central Kitsap Fire and Rescue arrived and they enlisted the Regional Technical Team to hoist the woman and her dog up the embankment.
Leilani was more cooperative than Sage, but they were eventually reunited at the top of the cliff. I note Sage seems better fed than the Lady.

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

. . . . . An Easy December

By “easy December” I mean here on the Naneum Fan – weatherwise. John

Sunday, Dec 10

No CPAP – Oximetry for Dec 9: SpO2 low 82, 9 events <88% with overall avg., 90.7%. Avg. low SpO2, 88 .5%. Pulse avg. 57.8, low 52. Slept 7 hrs 21 min. slept more

We have been working on many projects. John outside re-positioning the water trough and building an enclosure to protect to-be-installed heating tape on the metal pipe. He has moved multiple bales of hay to feeding spots for the winter. We feed in about 3 different places, especially during nasty cold weather, to keep the horses moving about. It is good for them, and they move less if mounds of hay are always in the same spot. One of the trucks had ‘stuff’ in it – that’s out and other ‘stuff’ is in, awaiting a trip to the transfer station (aka ‘dump’).

I have been on kitchen cleanup control, Collared Dove control, and email address change control, not to mention processing of the photos from last Friday at the AAC, and transferring them to interested persons at the AAC. Seems everything spins out of control and has to be re-spun.

John made a red velvet cake tonight and I just frosted it. He has cut up walnuts and put them on top. We’ll be having that with a little ice cream for dessert. The boxed cake was bought on sale sometime ago. Its “best by” date was a year ago September. Keeping stored food moving/rotated (some folks have a lot) must be an art form.

I’m still working on email changes. Making progress.
Let’s start the week with a Merry Christmas greeting from Karen Barrows & 5 of her 6 Brittanys. The sixth is still in training with Scott Azevedo, in Los Banos, CA. Karen is in SW Oregon. North Umpqua Brittanys – most of her dogs and puppies go back to our bloodlines, so this is a family greeting!! We have been friends for many years. She lives in Glide, OR. She has a nice web page with videos and pictures, if you want to be entertained and get a Brittany fix. Paste “North Umpqua Brittanys” into a search box if you care to have a cheer-up look from a wonderful Brittany breeder.

Monday, Dec 11

No CPAP – Oximetry for Dec 10 SpO2 low 85, 7 events <88% with overall avg., 92.2 %. Avg. low SpO2, 90.2%. Pulse avg. 56.0, low 50. Slept 9 hrs 19 min.

I called in to Super 1 Pharmacy for John’s refill of Tamsulosin and will pick up tomorrow. It is supposed to make him handsome. (LOL, recall John edits my first draft version of this every week). We both stayed home today.

I’ll switch pictures from dogs to cats, because John finished the pass-over structure – seen being used in these photos.Sue coming off the platform, and Woody and Sue resting and watching from there. The top is about 6 ft. X 4 ft. with metal roofing, so in light rain or snow the platform is suitable for occupancy. It makes a good lookout.

The left of the collage above shows the in-progress fence walkover into the front yard where they have a dog house (you’ve seen in previous blogs) holding a water heater and box of dry food up and out of reach of skunks. The “feral” cats eat near the front door twice a day, with a treat of canned food (pate & bits). The birds have feeders within the same enclosure, and we get quail and small birds (finches, juncos, and chickadees mostly now) eating the black oil sunflower seeds.

Here are the quail sitting on the newly railed fence around the front yard, hopefully to keep the deer out. Thanks to John for capturing this and the cats above on his camera. We have a lot of quail visiting us each day in the front yard, feeders, and driveway.

I got a call from my new endocrinologist’s office scheduler and we set up the closest appointment for Jan 30th at 9:05 a.m. in Wenatchee. John made a map with directions, to the place. We will wait until closer then to see what the weather is like. There’s always a possibility we could go up the afternoon before and get a motel room so we wouldn’t have to leave so early from Ellensburg in bad weather. (Now below, you will see this has been moved way forward to this coming Tuesday, Dec 19.) Now there is only rain in the forecast for us and Wenatchee, but we have to go over a slightly higher (~300 feet) elevation to get there. The Pass to Seattle is higher and the forecast is for it to be a mess of snow and rain on Tuesday. That’s why we never plan on going that way between early November and March.

I managed to set up the schedule for Thursday’s music. We are likely to have more people than chairs available without arms. Some will stand and a few don’t mind using chairs with arms.

Tuesday, Dec 12

No CPAP – Oximetry for Dec 11: SpO2 low 84, 9 events <88% with overall avg., 92.7%. Avg. low SpO2, 89.8%. Pulse avg. 58.3, low 50. Slept 6 hrs 32 min.+ 1.5 hr off oximeter

John (with newspaper in hand) is going to town with me while I exercise and then go along on shopping stops. John suggested I take a video of the Jazzy Funercise class to prove I was exercising, so here is 31 minutes to show I did. I should have moved the chair to my right, which blocks much of what I was doing. I always alternate legs on the movements, rather than do the lifts all on one side. That way, I remain balanced (no comments, please) and some feel more like dancing so I can keep time to the music. This was a new teacher with a new program, so it was a little rusty on the edges, but she did a very nice job. Only two of the normal class members were there. We received a good workout, without walking around the back of the chairs, as we often do, doing the different aerobic exercises. My FitBit wrist band recorded 20 minutes of vigorous aerobic exercise.

Class today at the AAC:
Jazzy Funercise

We went to Bi-Mart, where I checked our number on the list of winners, and we won nothing. I found a desk calendar for us to hang on the wall (30% off). I had been waiting for that since the end of Nov. when in previous years they have had the price reduction. Now, I can begin using it (starting with the new doctor’s visit appointment made for Jan 30 yesterday)! (now changed to 12/19). Then we drove to Super 1, and John took care of going in for groceries and to pick up his meds, Tamsulosin, .4mg capsules. It cost us $15.20 for a month’s supply. I just looked it up on GoodRX and found it for $10.85 at Safeway, but only $8.73 at Costco! I will have to check our next time in, to be sure our Costco honors the coupon in the Pharmacy. I know they do not honor any food coupons. Too many little details about medications and medical things.
While I was sitting in the parking lot, I called Joanie Taylor (in Quartzite, AZ and heard all about her recent surgery. We miss her on violin in our group, but she and hubby Ken, go for 6 months every year. Temperature was 70° when we were talking. She’ll not be back until April.

From there, we went to PetSense for $5.00 off a $40.00 purchase of canned cat food bits. With the $ off, it brings the price down to the same as the pate we get at Costco, and we cannot get the bits there.

Morning was been filled with getting notes off about our email change, downloading data, eating, feeding cats, and making telephone calls about music.

I just worked a little over an hour, with a short phone call included and sent out 8 jobs via the Jobslist I have not done anything with that chore since the weekend. It is, however, much appreciated by the almost 800 members on the google group list, NW Geography Jobs (including many more disciplines).

John fixed supper. It was good, and different. We had store bought beef stew (from a can; John wanted a can that size), but John added our beef, cauliflower, made a pan of cornbread [with corn niblets], and he cut up an apple.

Had a sad call from a friend in Oregon whose husband passed away, after a very long illness with his heart, a heart transplant 7 yrs ago, and then a couple of strokes. The last one took him. He was in the hospital Rehab in Salt Lake where the transplant was done. We have known them through Brittanys for over 40 years.

Tomorrow I have to finish getting the Thursday Christmas music ready to take to Meadows Place.

Wednesday, Dec 13

No CPAP – Oximetry for Dec 12: SpO2 low 82, 9 events <88% with overall avg., 91.9%. Avg. low SpO2, 89.8%. Pulse avg. 56.9, low 51. Slept 7 hrs 59 min.

I fixed my salad to take to Food Bank and worked some on the Christmas music. I took some bells along. Two of our fans at the front table played them with us.

Thursday our music group goes to Meadows Place and I have to notify people who are coming and call in the number of arm-less chairs required. Hard to get at assisted living homes where they need to have arms on the chairs for safety reasons with the residents. We perform in the dining rooms of the homes.

I went to my SAIL class. There I took a 51 min video, until battery ran out. I should have started with a new one. Oh, well, we got most of it. We went overtime today. Interestingly, I met a woman there from the university (teacher of visual arts) that I knew over 8 years ago in a campus wide committee we both participated in, regarding Service Learning Activities for university students. I actually knew her father and his cat, “Crackers,” from visiting him when our music group went to play at Mt. View Meadows. That’s where our group is playing tomorrow, but they have changed the name to Meadows Place, with new ownership.

12-13-17 Ellensburg Adult Activity Center
SAIL class

Came home and washed dishes.
I have to finish getting the Thursday Christmas music ready.
I continue working on email address changes.
I took a break to do a few birthday cards and check email.

Slight change of subject to a link sent to me today about an article, which I found to be truly meaningful to me after being involved with using and teaching GIS pronounced as the three letters and standing for “Geographical Information Systems.” My first class in graduate school was in 1971 (Iowa). My first class taught was in 1977 (Idaho). Before that in Cincinnati, OH, I learned about computer cartography, and taught my first class in that, in 1967 (Georgia).
Here is the article of interest about GIS:
Will the Real GIS Please Stand Up! It’s really quite amusing, so you should give it a read.

Stand Up

I especially hope Gina, our Iguana loving friend and rescuer in Texas will read this article above. Read the article and you’ll understand my comment.

Thursday, Dec 14

No CPAP – Oximetry for Dec 13: SpO2 low 85, 6 events <88% with overall avg., 92.2%. Avg. low SpO2, 90.1%. Pulse avg. 57.7, low 52. Slept 8 hrs 52 min.

Whoo hoo !!! I’m so happy!! An appointment opened up with Dr. Stone for Dec 26th at 9:05 a.m. in Wenatchee (now changed again; glad I requested to be on the cancellation call list). Pray for no snow. John just told me last night we were not going to have a white Christmas, so I hope he’s right for Wenatchee as well.

We both worked on projects until leaving at 1:00 p.m. for Meadows Place with all the stuff we needed. John helped set up chairs and we did not have to bring in my folding chair from the car. Was certainly a cloudy gray day today.

I took my camera and couldn’t find my tripod so was going to use the piano, but John spied a highboy cabinet, and helped me put it on top and he started and stopped the camera recording. We got the whole hour in (staring a little before 2:00 with two songs for a warm-up, and then launched into the booklet we had given the audience, with the lyrics on colored pages, so I had to give directions throughout the playing. The pages were not numbered, so I had to say the title and the color of the page. We have used this handout for years, and only have 14 copies left, so I have to be very sure to have someone watching the music so it does not disappear. It would be a pain to replace now. Occasionally, our audiences are larger than 14, so this month they will have to share. The December music is the only one with this setup. All other months are numbered.

Here is the recording of today’s music – 59 minutes worth. Go through a few but don’t miss going to the end for a couple of our group songs, and the next to last song with Manord leading us on the Peter, Paul & Mary song, A ‘Soalin, and don’t miss the very last song by Evie and Laina, twin fiddlers, “This Christmas Night.” ~ ~ below, a screen capture from video ~ ~. . . . . Kittitas Valley Fiddlers & Friends,
. . . . . . . . . . Meadows Place, 12-14-17
Christmas Music

Friday, Dec 15

No CPAP – Oximetry for Dec 14: SpO2 low 82, 18 events <88% with overall avg., 91.8%. Avg. low SpO2, 88.9%. Pulse avg. 56.x, low 51. Slept 8 hrs 41 min.

I went to the Let It Snow! event at the AAC. I took lots of photos because the staff are always too busy to take photographs while serving us lunch (turkey casserole), and leading the events. Nicole helped with the snowman making below, pictured at the foreground left below at the craft table. Many of the leaders and servers are volunteer members. It’s a nice joint effort for the benefit of all there. The AmeriCorps gals (Nicole and Jessi) then post the photos on Facebook, at Ellensburg Adult Activity Center. The nicest thing done with the photos helps people who come to events and do not have a computer or smart phone for access to the web. They order 4×7″ photos and then give them to the people. I have had some folks request a particular picture location with them standing adjacent so they can send to their grandchildren. The AAC always decorates the entire room with nice décor for the month or season.

We started the program with a song fest (6 songs) from the acapella group of singers named Black and Silver (directed by Sara Pope). I will put a video below of their 3rd song (with drum accompaniment by Mark Manning on an African drum, a Djembe. This drum originated in West Africa. According to the Bambara people of Mali, the name of the djembe comes from the saying, “Anke djé, anke bé” which translates to “everyone gather together in peace,” thus defining the drum’s purpose. In their language, “djé” is the verb for “gather” and “bé” translates as “peace.” (information from Wikipedia)

Black & Silver Song with Djembe drum

The last song was a sing-a-long, with audience participation: “We Wish You a Merry Christmas!”

Black & Silver Song 6

After their performance, we were served lunch.

Here are some of the table centerpiece decorations.They were different on each of several tables of three rows.

Part of the event was hand-crafting one’s own to take home. (left) Instructions for making the base; craft table participants. Connie Bright (2nd from the right above) helped with the snowmen making materials, and with a game of pin the lips on the snowman toward the end. It was interesting (see below).

During the end of lunch and after our piano player (Trip Landon) finished his lunch, he and his brother Beck played a short duet, and then Trip continued with a bunch of Christmas songs. We started and ended with music. The music continued through the game described below (pin the lips on the snowman).

Some information about the contribution of the Landon family.Part of the Landon family are here; from the right, Laura, Beckett (who incidentally has borrowed my ¾ size violin I had in the 4th grade, turned it into a viola [with a different string setup]), Trip Landon (who played the piano for us today, but the day before, played Christmas music with our Kittitas Valley Fiddlers & Friends. The gentleman across from Beck is his grandfather, Gary Brown, a US Navy Submariner. Dad Johnny joined them later for the meal, but Beck had to leave to go back to school. Both Gary and Johnny are veterans, and both boys played patriotic music with our music group back in November for the AAC’s early Veterans’ Day celebration. Look back in the blog to Nov 3.

Here’s a very short video of the brothers’ piano duet. I haven’t had time to upload all the videos yet.

A piano duet (just a warm-up)
Trip & Beck

Then Trip continued alone on a bunch of songs for the season.Here he is playing for the rest of the party, and an AAC member, Jackie, thanking him at the end. Jackie is in my SAIL class there.

Here was the game (Pin the Lips on the Snowman):Start with blindfold, placing a kiss on the snowman, and the one getting the sticker closet to his lips won a package of chocolate kisses. You can see the errant ones, and others were even farther off the snowman.

Here’s a video of the process, very short:

Connie leading blindfolded lady toward the wall.
Placing lips

Finally, a few parting shots Posing with our hats and friends, Nancy, Jessi, Marilyn, Curtis. Long ago, Curtis was my student in Geography classes at CWU.

I have been wishing to get a photo of me, in my Rudolph the red-nosed reindeer sweatshirt, with a stuffed Rudolph the red-nosed reindeer I bought at a yard sale ~5 years ago and donated to the senior center, where I get to see him every year. Left are two shots of Rudolph at the AAC, and him with me, 2017

I came home, called Dr. Stone’s nurse, and now I have an appointment Dec 19, at 1:05 p.m. in Wenatchee. That means I have to miss Jazzy Funercise at the AAC, but this is extremely important to my health, so I have to go. It’s especially nice the scheduled time is later in the day, as well. And, the weather forecast is for light rain, only.

Meanwhile, I need to get some blood tests drawn this Monday, so that the endocrinologist will have the whole picture. I have to get them ordered through my PCP who made the referral. The tests requested are Ferritin, Free T4, Free T3, Reverse T3 and a TPO.

We stayed up way too late working on chores.

Saturday, Dec 16

No CPAP – Oximetry for Dec 15: SpO2 low 82, 10 events <88% with overall avg., 91.9%. Avg. low SpO2, 89.8%. Pulse avg. 55.8, low 52. Slept 7 hrs 24 min +.

Today has been filled with accomplishing chores in the house and outside. John’s biggest one was removing a tree that fell across a fence at the south end of our pasture, and our neighbor’s horses came over for a visit to graze out of our sight in the woods by the creek. At one point recently, they apparently were followed out by our horse, Myst, whom John found one morning on the opposite side of our fence, in our neighbor’s pasture. He was lucky even to see her, because the morning freezing fog was so dense. He thinks he has put an end to the problem, and has taken out the tree, and put up the fence. He also loaded some rounds of wood he cut several years ago into his Gorilla Cart and brought them out.

I continued working on the blog, processing photos and videos, working on email address changes, working on sending announcements to the “jobs list” I moderate, and putting away dishes.

Sunday, Dec 17

No CPAP – Oximetry for Dec 16: SpO2 low 84, 6 events <88% with overall avg., 92.8%. Avg. low SpO2, 90.5%. Pulse avg. 56.6, low 50. Slept 7 hrs 46 min.

John titled this post as “An Easy December” because long range weather forecasts – out to January 1 – indicate we will not have seriously cold temperature, nor lots of snow. Last year we had cold temperatures that lasted so long people and animals suffered. Even our frost-free faucet froze. We managed to keep the horses watered. Many folks in the Valley had more issues than we did. Wildlife suffered, but the upside is that such cold also kills pests that survive (overwinter) during a season like we are having now.
We know folks in the eastern and central parts of the country are having cold weather, and there are still fires in California, but we are, relatively speaking, having an easy December. We wish you well, stay warm, and safe.

Hope your week was fine.

Nancy & John
Still on the Naneum Fan

. . . . . . . TW’NSNN

This Week’s Not So Nasty News {TW’NSNN}

. . . . from John, awaiting Nancy’s draft of her week’s news.
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Item #1 Snowboarding 363
The State of Idaho is vaguely familiar to me so when the “dateline” was BOISE, Idaho (KBOI) – – I had to look.

On the bunny hill with Cash

Item 1-a: Also, there is a video of a little girl in a sheep costume (hard to tell) that takes the doll-baby Jesus from its swaddling cloth. She wants to play with it. The little girl playing Mary objects and thus a tussle:
Mary confronts Sheep

Item #2: Sheri is the Elf on the shelf
Follow the flow of water from the Great Lakes and you will find yourself on the St. Lawrence River and then the Gulf of St Lawrence. Laurentius was a Roman dude martyred in the year 258. This is not a good choice for naming a major N.A. river. The native Mohawks called the river Kaniatarowanenneh, meaning “Big Waterway”, so I would sign a petition for a renaming.Well, Sheri Gillam lives in Bonavista, a small place on the Island of Newfoundland, in the middle of the flow of the Kaniatarowanenneh on its way to the North Atlantic Ocean. Three miles east is Elliston, and then the Ocean.
There’s not a lot to do out that way.
Sheri provides a little Christmas cheer.
Link to story and photos

New Flavors – I can’t wait

Big news hit the internet this week: Oreo – the cookie folks – announced a May 2018 introduction of three new flavors:
Cherry Cola – –
with fizzy red & white filling;
Piña Colada – –
is to have pineapple-coconut crème; and
Kettle Corn – –
is to contain corn puff like wonders.

You will have to find the rest of this exciting news yourself.
I got so excited I had to run to the bathroom.

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

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