Fall Equinox, came, so

. . . we are now headed for Winter!

Monday, Sept 17

We published the blog from last week, Sunday night at 10:49.

I sent a note about practice session to KV F&F and attached the songs for Oct/Nov 2018, the same as we used for 2017. No changes. Asked players to please look for theirs from last year. Added 2018 to the playlist title with all the songs. We have since cancelled the practice session until more players return to the fold. They are strung all over the western USA! We need them with us for decisions about starts and tempos.

We are taking off for town for my exercise class, and blood draw for John at the hospital, and another couple of stops. We made it home after getting groceries and just in time to receive a call from the triage nurse in Cle Elum with Dr. Wood’s comments about John’s Thyroid test results. The TSH & T4 were fine, and he is to stay on the 88mcg dosage. I requested a 90-tablet refill, and I will pick it up Wednesday or Thursday, when he will run out of pills. While I had them on the phone I requested Amoxicillin for my dental work coming up next week, but Dr. Wood has to approve it. I can get more going through him than through the Dentist, thus saving money. I’ll know before going in Oct 4 for my teeth cleaning. (I have already received it.)

Tuesday, Sept 18

I drove from home a mile to get my haircut at 12:30 and take jeans and jars to Celia. At the last minute, I couldn’t find the jeans so will do that later.

My Forester’s battery died today, on my 4th stop. Could have been worse. I had several places to go and things to do. After my haircut, I returned home to pick up WSJ papers to deliver to a gal near the EBRG airport. Took off for town to check my Bi-Mart number. I actually won the last digit, but so much stuff was happening in between time of seeing that until checking out, that I forgot to get my gift. Next stop, Super 1 pharmacy, to pick up my meds, and I went to the outside window, but 2 cars were in front of me, so I turned the motor off. When the second one was almost finished I turned the key, but it did nothing.
I tried taking it out of park and it would not budge. Turning the key did not start the motor or even making a clicking noise. I got out and walked to the window and told Jennifer what was happening. She gave me my meds and looked up the phone number for Seth Motors. I tried again, and on the second try it clicked a few times, but then did nothing. I called Seth’s and told Chad my problem. He agreed it was probably that the battery had died. I had not yet looked under the hood, but figured I had replaced the battery, and we always use Les Schwab for our tire and battery needs. Chad gave me the phone number for Les Schwab and told me to call him back if I needed help. Meanwhile, two people stopped and offered to help. A gal who works at the hospital, Rachael D., heard me talking and asked if she could give me a jump start. She had the cables and the knowledge of how to jump start. She did the setup, started her engine, and then I tried mine, and it worked. Below is a simple diagram, but here is a cool link: Jumping with wikiHowI thanked her, asked her name, gave her a hug, and headed for the battery place a half-block away. Turned too soon, into the drive way of the local Chevy dealer. Oh well, all the new cars were pretty, but not my type.
So back to the street, 2 left turns, to Les Schwab. I finally found the battery man, and he checked it twice and found it dead. So, we replaced it. I only paid for a 5-year replacement because I intend to trade my car in before that many years have passed. [ I’d like a 2019/20 model, which is totally improved, with many changes, but I want to wait until all the glitches have been discovered on the newer features. ]
That took a longer while than I wished, but it’s done. It actually was a good day to happen because nothing else was scheduled with a time appointment I had to meet, as would be the case any other day of the week.

Wednesday, Sept 19

Leave back door up on the Subaru for feed bag delivery from Krystal and leave a pot of hen and chicks.
I got the phone number for Ruth & Michael Hamilton. I called at 9:00 a.m. and she and Michael are coming to FISH at noon.

I met the folks at the food bank, gave them the insulated lunch carrier, and visited a little. The fellow who it was for, for his lunch box, plays the harmonica, and he will join us next week for our music. He, his wife, and his sister all came and joined the Senior Nutrition program while they were there.

I went to SAIL exercise class at the AAC and came out to find my rear gate still open on my car, and no feed bags inside. She was later coming than I expected, but Katrina took them and put them in a back room, so I will go by and collect them tomorrow.

Thursday, Sept 20

I called in 10 chairs for KV F&F today this week at Pacifica Senior Living Ellensburg (Pacifica). We had a seating problem today, being strung out in a long line, where we could not hear each other. It was disastrous. We have to be in a horseshoe shape, or it does not work. They have moved us from our old placement because with new renovations they have added very heavy granite-topped tables. These cannot be moved. Some change is going to have to be made for us to continue playing there. I’ll have to investigate alternatives.

I went by AAC for my feed bags after music and took a picture of the pots of hen & chicks left at the AAC. Several are up for grabs, but 5 have to be left for Katrina to plant around the building’s gardens.

I took my Entresto to the Super 1 Pharmacy for halving and picked up the paperwork for Flu Shots to fill out in advance for John and me to go by for our shots. We were given a Senior Flu Shot, a higher-strength flu vaccine, made for people age 65 or older, to help provide better protection. We are eligible for an updated Pneumonia protection that takes two shots a year apart: recommendation is that seniors get both the Prevnar 13 and the Pneumovax 23 vaccines. As their names imply, Prevnar 13 protects against 13 types of pneumococcal bacteria, and the Pneumovax 23 protects against 23 types of pneumococcal bacteria. The Prevnar 13 has been ordered for both of us by our pharmacist. With my history, I wonder if I shouldn’t have taken the Pneumovax 23 as my first shot, and followed next year with the Prevnar 13. (Now Monday a.m. and I have talked to the triage nurse who has my records; a decision is being made.) Both of us have had both shots in previous years, so the decision is which to repeat for this year.

We went from there to The Palace (long time downtown eatery) for my birthday dinner, which has to be collected during the month of September. I took a container for my leftover Cobb Salad (I always get). John received the free dinner (Country Fried Steak, with brown gravy, baked potato, with a large helping of cooked carrots). We had a decadent dessert for our appetizer! This was a great part of our meal, and only about half the cost of normal appetizers.

We left to be at Hal Holmes for the Kittitas Audubon Society meeting, got there early, and visited with a couple of others that arrived a few minutes later. The doors weren’t opened until just before the start at 7:00 p.m.

After the preliminary stuff (a dead Great Horned Owl was viewed – it will go to a museum collection on the Wet Side), we had a nice presentation by two people I know from CWU: Holly Pinkart (Biologist) & Bob Hickey (Geologist/Geographer).
Bob in blue – left; Holly in pink – right.
Speakers at table with Audubon members, Gloria & Jeb Baldi

Part One – Chasing Darwin: 10 Days in the Galapagos with a Biologist and a GeologistGalapagos giant tortoise and Vermillion flycatcher
Photo from Geeky Girl Engineer [John just found this site – will investigate later]

Part Two – 8 minutes by Holly Pinkart and Bob Hickey

Part Three – 9 minutes of questions/answers by both

Friday, Sept 21

I went (back)to The Palace for a special birthday party for a gal in a wheelchair in my SAIL exercise class.

I drove to Kittitas to a fence across from elementary school on 6th off Pierce and picked up a bag of goodies for Haley and Amy, freely given from the Buy Nothing Facebook site. On to the neighborhood pantry to donate clothes, but they were closed, so I went to ask for the key to unlock the gate, and the people were not there today. They are not associated with the food side, but a woman inside told me she would take the clothes and turn them in. I mentioned I needed to write a note on the pants to say they were not the size they are marked and she said she would take care of telling the women. She apologized for my driving all the way out there for nothing. I told her it was fine, as I had one other stop and still another to go to Gibson Produce for some fresh tomatoes, corn, and maybe something else. She said, why don’t you come through our food pantry here and take some food. I thanked her and told her I did not qualify. She said, oh no, everyone qualifies, and income has nothing to do with it. We just need your name, the number in your family, and your ID. She said I was welcome to register, and to get some tomatoes and anything else we needed that they had. I went to my car to retrieve DL# and filled out the papers. Then I signed in with the number of people in our house and our ages. John claims he is 37 and holding. I’m happy to say my age, because I still act his.

They ushered me to a backroom with a box already loaded with a few canned goods, and other non-perishable things. I was asked to take out what we would not use. So, I did. Then they offered a bunch of produce. I took the only two tomatoes that were there, a red one and a goldish one, and they put them in a plastic bag in the box. Bad idea, because the next thing put on top was a small bag of apples that smashed the red tomato. The gold one survived, and I may be able to salvage some of the red one that split into two halves. They also gave me a Jicama (with a sweet older Hispanic lady telling me about it and how to eat it). I have never had one before. They threw in a couple of potatoes.

Then they opened a freezer and offered frozen veggies. I got a bag of green beans, and then a woman asked if I would like some frozen fish. She gave me two pieces – it is salmon, quite small. I was offered melons, so I got a Cantaloupe, but not any of the watermelon, or various squash. They did not have any corn-on-the-cob. They also offered me a half dozen eggs, which I took.
They offered some other refrigerated things that I didn’t take, such as yogurt. We can donate some of the things we grow back to the food pantry. Our weather looks good for the next week or so – so we are still expecting to harvest some large Butternut Squash. Photos next week.

If I return with the box, I’m allowed to take a few things from the other shelves (including rice, grains, cereal, bread, and desserts). Today they gave me the large box and I will take it back the next time I go. They are only open on Fridays, and they do not limit the number of times a person comes for their family. I will not go every week unless I have produce to share. I know the FISH food bank in Ellensburg limits their clients to twice a month, but also requires a low family income. The noon meals served M-W-Fs that we play music for on Wednesdays, will feed anyone. One of the things on that side of the room includes desserts. Today, I was asked to take two desserts. I took a small brownie covered with a chocolate chip looking cookie with M&Ms inserted. It was enough for 2 people, but I was told to pick two, so I picked up two packages and thanked them. They also had large double layer cakes. I put the two squares in my box, and one server brought me two more to carry away, so I thanked her, brought them home and froze them. Seems there is not a lack of food in the USA, although access to it may be limited by geography and transportation.

They keep track of their food gifts by weight. I know my box was huge and heavy to start with, and weighed more with food than I wanted to pick up, but they offered to take it to my car, and I ended up with 31 pounds!!

I went on to Gibson’s produce for tomatoes and corn-on-the-cob.
The tomatoes were from Yakima and relatively expensive so I walked around to see what they had at the fruit stand. On the back side was a special bunch of slightly bruised or damaged fruit, in some small way. It was $2.99 for as much as you could stuff into a bag. I filled my bag with a red pepper, several large red Beefsteak tomatoes, 3 large Roma ones, and 4 peaches. I got 6 ears of Yakima yellow corn @ 3/$1.00. The corn was as nice as we have seen.

Saturday, Sept 22

Sunday is a bridge construction work day in eastern WA. John is going to take the Ford truck tomorrow to cart the power brusher home from the Spokane area WTA crew.  It is a very bad idea to carry gasoline & gas powered tools in a regular (closed) vehicle. He came in late for lunch but had moved the old washer (going to the transfer station) out of the back of the truck, to allow the canopy to be moved back on. A friend lives at Newman Lake, 15 miles north of Liberty Lake. Bob has handled to care and feeding of the Stihl brusher over the summer when not being used by the local WTA crew. The bridge project, over 6 days, will see 2 very large trees cut, peeled, and placed on supports. This will replace an older structure that is about ready to fall into the creek. I (John) can ride with Bill Weir one of the days, he will work 4 of the 6 dates. Otherwise, John is planning on just Sun/Tues/Thurs.

We got 3 pounds of blackberries off the bushes today – second time, with more coming. The next batch of berries will be smaller than those already picked.
Our Fall colors above and below.
I rinsed and drained them, and he packaged into two separate bags to freeze. A Carpathian walnut ready to drop. John’s been collecting them.

I washed dishes. We had dinner. Chili, tomatoes, pear, corn-on-the-cob, and skipped dessert.

He went to bed early because of getting up at 3:30 a.m.

Sunday, Sept 23

John was off at 4:00 a.m. Prior to meeting the other WTA volunteers, he wants to cross into Idaho, an extra 5 miles and get gas at 30¢ less per gallon. He expects to need about 17 gallons and then the tank will be full for the return. He was the 3rd of 20 to show at the trailhead – so had lots of time to visit.
I slept in. Morning bran with half a fresh peach & half a banana.

Sunny, windy, & cool today.

I spent a long time working on emails and now off to do the rest of the chores for today. It’s all taking longer than planned. Had a call from Sonja M, neighbor way down the road. I need to send her pictures of the hen & Chicks “bloom” (the dying mother hen).

Taking time out to go open the gate so a woman can drive in to pick up 2 pots of Jade plant starts. It was good exercise for me, and allowed Annie to get in a small run. It was very cold out, and I about froze in the wind without a wool hat, walking up the drive and later visiting with her. She came for the Jade plant starts, but only took two of them and 3 of the other, Hen and Chicks. The right photo shows the two pots she took, and the half pot above, a much larger 12” pot, she also took. She will return my pots after planting. She also wanted to take time to visit with our horses.Jade plants and Hen and Chicks.

John called about 5 to say he was buying a meal at Carl’s Jr’s at Ritzville – 2 ½ hours away. He was a few minutes off, but there was still a bit of light sky when he went to feed the horses. He had set up an arrangement for me to feed if he couldn’t get back in time, and I was ready, but he said on the phone, not to because he would return in time.

It’s now Monday, and we are going to eat and drive to the Yakima Heart Center for a device check for me and a discussion with my cardiologist. Home, and I turn around and head back to town for a dinner party John cannot attend because of chores here and needing to get in bed early to leave in the morning again at 4:00 a.m. for Liberty Lake. Now publishing on the way out the door.

Hope your week was fine.

Nancy and John
Still on the Naneum Fan