Short daylight; reversal soon

Monday, Dec 9

Prices of our medications at different pharmacies: I called Kaiser Permanente (KP) pharmacy and asked prices on all John’s prescriptions. Then I compared to GoodRx prices for his from Fred Meyer, versus KP’s and Safeway, where they had been sent by our PCP.

All for both of us is a 90-day supply. (Lacey changed all these on the records for us on Dec 11, 2019).

Need to change to Fred Meyer for Tamsulosin 0.4mg ($13.91) – but, will wait for the evaluation of a change in dosage before filing this one. John’s now on an interlude with this one.

Changed to KP MailOrder for Hydrochlorothiazide 12.5 mg ($10), and already received our first mail order.

Changed to Fred Meyer for Levothyroxine 88mcg ($20.13) and Lisinopril 30 mg ($11.96), and picked it up late this week.

Changed Nancy’s Metoprolol to KP. It will save me $20/yr below the cost at Super 1.

Call from Cle Elum, Paige in referrals, to Dr. Roux, NW Orthopedics, (EBRG), for appointment for my left shoulder. I think it was for a shot of cortisone? although I think he told me that would not cure my situation. Well, they are to call me about scheduling an appointment. The call came through from Yakima, and the scheduler said she would have to schedule me with Dr. Wong, because Dr. Roux did not want to be involved. I know he is mainly doing knees now, not shoulders, but I also know he told me shots would not help my condition, and he gave me a very complete analysis of the X-rays and my left shoulder condition. He said it was bone on bone, bone spurs, and bone cysts, and showed us on the X-ray. He also said I was not a candidate for a complete shoulder replacement, because of the chance of death from the operation. I can only have operations with a local. So I declined the requested referral and did not make an appointment.

Midday, I received an email on one of my accounts from a GIS person in Spokane, WA, Tim Leach. It came from the Central Puget Sound GIS User Group list, and is from the Spokesman-Review Newspaper there. We lived in Idaho for 15 years, and the closest big city was Spokane, so we were quite familiar with the paper and subscribed to it.

Check the link below for an interesting article, and that is preceded with a very old map of the world:A copy image of a more than 500-year-old map that was the first to use the name “America.” It also was the first to depict a separate Western Hemisphere and a separate Pacific Ocean. (Associated Press)

How do people name continents or places on Earth?

Supper: soup, fish, and a strange Café Steamers® Beef Merlot (Tender Beef Strips [not tender and not strips, but chunks] with Russet Potatoes & a Vegetable Medley [tough carrots and green beans] in Rich Merlot Wine Sauce). I got on sale at Fred Meyer. It was awful. The wine sauce was cooked in a plastic bowl beneath the other stuff, which was steamed through holes in the plastic container placed over the sauce. Literally, the weirdest frozen dinner either of us have ever experienced, and do not wish to again in our lifetime. I hope I didn’t buy two of them. It was a purchase of 5 different dinners (mix & match) to get $1 off each dinner.

Tuesday, Dec 10

We pulled out the roll of Pillsbury Chocolate Chip cookie dough, needing a snack for tomorrow morning’s meeting. When that thawed, I formed and cooked them on parchment paper.

I fixed a bag of undergarments with 3 new packages of nylon knee highs, to take to the Ellensburg Community Clothing Center to arrive about a little before 11:00 a.m. to look for a Christmas Sweater for John (did not find one), and other Christmas tops for me. I found more for me than he did, so he helped me carry it. I got two very nice Christmas sweaters, two Christmas tops, a pair of Christmas gloves, a cool pair of (I think) pajama bottoms, black with red/white candy canes, which I probably will wear with my not so ugly Christmas sweater and top to the party Dec 20 at the AAC (Senior Center).

We then went for lunch at the Food Bank Senior Nutrition dinner (had beef stew, bowl of fruit, rolls, and piece of frosted chocolate cake), with juice. The chunks of beef were tough, so we took most home and will re-cook another day. I went to Safeway for my meds which were not properly halved yet (so we had to return later), and then on to the hospital for a blood draw, which they screwed up by not drawing enough blood for analyzing it and will have to redraw in the morning (on a day that’s an even fuller day than today).

We had several stops to make today. Packed my pills and red bag to go to Food Bank and AAC, because the red bag has my entry swipe to the AAC. They keep track of attendance daily.

We went by Bi-mart with coupons and to check numbers. We found some thermal socks for me, and I don’t remember what else we got we went for. Not all the coupons were pertinent to our needs. Oh, we got some clothes and dishwashing liquid on sale. John found a flannel blue shirt on sale, but it did not show that price at the register. Meghan came up front to fix that glitch.

Wednesday, Dec 11

Today was the busiest day of the week – starting at Hearthstone at 8:45 a.m., with set up for the retired geographer’s meeting, on to the hospital for the redraw and then over to Imaging for a mammogram, which didn’t occur (see below), to Liberty Theater to play music for the Food Bank Lunch, take my antibiotics at the end of playing so I can be at the dentist at 1:00 for teeth cleaning (hour) followed by two teeth cracked needing repaired.

What a day this was! Started with both of us driving separately to Hearthstone, leaving after 4” of snow, on unplowed roads at 8:25 a.m. 2 miles from our house we had a wide load coming toward us taking up most of the narrow rood (Naneum). I move over as far as possible and it barely went by. Rather scary. We made it to town with only one slick spot on a right turn onto the Kittitas highway, from the north. I unloaded my stuff, and went back to park my car on the street.

We had several people make it in through the snow: Ken, Carla, Lillian (who lives there), Mary Ann, and the two of us. We set up the tables and put our Santa Claus platter full of chocolate chip cookies out, with little plates. Hearthstone provided the hot chocolate, coffee, and hot water. The cookies recipe was requested by a couple of ladies there, and for your information, they were made from a roll of Pillsbury Chocolate Chip cookie dough.

Lillian’s Family and her painting on the right

Top Lil holds her family members photo

Lillian Brooks tells her Family Reunion Story

Lillian Brooks continues her Christmas story

Mary Ann

Mary Ann Macinko’s Thanksgiving Story

I left at 10:20 for my trip to the hospital; having difficulty finding a parking spot (had to drive over the snow packed in the last available spot on a corner. Then I had to leave the spot and back in, because I couldn’t get out into the snowbank, but could next to a truck (which was parked too close). I walked around the back of the car, to pick up my violin, and not leave it in the cold car. Good thing, because our side mirrors were too close, so I couldn’t have gotten by the front of my car and the truck. From the back, there was a sidewalk I could use to get back to the front entrance of the hospital.

Checked in for two appointments: the repeat blood draw and a mammogram. They took me right in for the blood draw, and had to go through 3 vials before realizing the problem was the vials somehow shutting off the blood flow too soon. It is a problem that sometimes happens when they are roughly handled in the shipping process. Finally, my phlebotomist, Paige, told me the problem and got around it by using a different method of filling a different vial. Also, she said that the problem yesterday was the same; not enough blood was drawn for the test. That was not the first story I received by phone when asked to return for another draw. She was going to get rid of the box of vials before others had to suffer as I did.

Walked across the hall to Imaging for my mammogram, which they had scheduled. Luckily, Rose, my technician, knew enough to look at the last date I had one, and it was the same day, Dec 11, 2018. My test should not have been scheduled until one day later than last year’s. She showed me the Medicare form I was going to have to sign to have the test paid for. #3 on the form was the ability to say I refused to take the test and would reschedule. Otherwise, it would have cost me $400. I thanked her profusely and I will be writing an evaluation thanking her for her attention to detail. I’ll also suggest they arrange for all schedulers to have access to the date of the last one so that won’t happen in the future to anyone else. An alert by the system should be presented at the time of scheduling by the computer.

From there I made it to the Food Bank earlier than originally planned, so I was there in time to help with setup. We had a good turnout: 5 singers: Richard, Reta, Peggy, Robert, Bob and instrumentalists: Dean, Evelyn, Richard, & Nancy. We are still doing Christmas music. Soon as we were done, I had to take my Amoxicillin in preparation for my 2 hours of dental work.

For lunch, I had bought my protein drink (Ensure & Yogurt), and I went to the buffet line, but only took a bowl of fruit in yogurt, and a piece of spice cake with chocolate chips and a dab of chocolate frosting.

I left and made it to the dentist in time, and took my violin in with me. My cleaning started on time and it was successful. I was moved to another chair for my dentist to examine two teeth #10 and #7, which had been chipped. She decided that today we would do #7, to put in a composite filling. But, we’ll wait for the other until January. I bought a container of Prevident prescription fluoride toothpaste ($15), which lasts a long time, even using it every night. Checked out and tentatively made appointments for my next two visits: the January one, and the next cleaning, in April. I need to get them on the 2020 calendar.

From there, I went by with my camera and stopped at the AAC to use their computers for a quick glance at email in case anything important had come in. My main reason was to take photos of all the Christmas decorations around the senior center. They have done a beautiful job. I took a lot of photos I’m going to put in a Google photo album to share with one link. Here are two:Ellensburg Adult Activity Center (Senior Center)

Christmas at AAC 2019 photos by Nancy

From there off to Elmview for a glance at the bread room. Today I found some spicy baguette slices and a loaf of 3 cheese Semolina bread. John gave me an ultimatum of no more bread. No room in the freezers. However, if I find English Muffin Toasting Bread loaf, I will get it and separate into small packages and stick in small spaces in the freezers. He can take out a couple of ice packages (2 liter bottles).

For supper, we had pizza, compliments of the AAC, with roasted salmon from Costco. Fruitcake for dessert.
Got my photos and videos off the camera. I sent off the chair count for tomorrow at Meadows. We only had one last minute change.

Thursday, Dec 12
Cold Moon in Roslyn, WA 12-12-19 by Jennifer Lipton

This is a fantastic capture which she took when she arrived home safely from dangerously slippery surfaces on I-90 with multiple car spin-outs. I plan to use this photo to invite Jen into a Facebook photography group I just joined. It is UKC Photographers. You folks saw Jen in our last week’s blog taking their son on the search for a Christmas tree.

John stayed home today and push-broomed snow to clear driveways and area around our hay barn to get a load of hay delivered tomorrow. We tried to get it before the snow fell and requested it a month ago, but that didn’t happen.

I spent the morning on medical appointment planning, and getting the videos and photographs taken yesterday into shape. Still a lot of upload time required.

I left before 1:00 p.m. for town (in the fog), to get there for setup and took along my new camera to see if Evie could help me adjust the white balance because inside photos had too much orange. She succeeded and I took some photos, and set up my tripod to take a video of our performance. We had a good audience who enjoyed the music very much. They always are happy to see us each month on the 2nd Thurs.

This was particularly a great day because many of the players were dressed in their Christmas clothes.

Evie Schuetz & Nancy HultquistKittitas Valley Fiddlers & Friends: Manord, Evie, Gerald, Charlie, Dean, Nancy, Sharon, Amy, Charlotte, Sandy at Meadows Place, December 12, 2019

Here is the 51-minute video, of a longer musical performance:

Fiddlers & Friends at Meadows Place

I want to start this description with a humongous thanks to EvieMae Schuetz for taking my two very large video files recorded of us and using her talents and equipment to edit them and put together as a smooth flowing presentation and then upload to her YouTube site to send me the link to share with my friends. I am totally unable to do this with this camera because of the resolution, and my Internet speed would not allow me to ever upload the video to YouTube. We all owe Evie an amazing thanks and a big hug.

I’m looking into the possibility of getting this Internet speed at my house, but no one is open to inquire until Monday. I also do not have the software she has for editing, so I need to determine if that is a possibility for me to add to my computer.

This afternoon after music at Meadows Place, I gave my friend Sandy a ride home, but had to drop by two pharmacies for meds for me and for John, and grab another item from Fred Meyer while in the pharmacy, which Sandy was able to help me get, because she has some and knew where they were in the store. She went for it as I was waiting in line at the Pharmacy. I was not successful at the Pharmacy because I left the GoodRx coupons home on the counter. It will save me over $20 to get them and go back tomorrow. Turned out to save me $42! This difference in pricing is just wrong, but I’ll play the game and find the pharmacy with the best price.

Tonight I’ve been working more on emails, and more planning for things to be completed for the retired geographers and for the music group.

Friday, Dec 13

We do not know when the hay delivery will occur. I need to drive to town midday. We’ll see how that goes. It happened while I was away, and two tons were delivered to our hay barn. Good, because we would have run out on Monday.

My photo for the day came from a brief trip to Meadows to deliver some donated cakes from the Kittitas Pantry, and to share the contact for a woman from Kittitas, who wants to take her grandchildren to visit residents without family members. The activity director and caregiver present were thrilled at the prospect and pleased to accept the Christmas cakes.

As I was leaving Meadows, I saw a photo opportunity, and had my camera along, so I took it. Look below on Saturday to see where I published it.

From there, with my GoodRx coupons, I went to Fred Meyer Pharmacy for John’s medications. I saved $42. That was certainly worth the second trip to town.

Also, the purchase generated a bunch of fuel points, so I used them to fill my tank that was only ½ down, but the price with fuel points was 30 cents off each gallon, making the charge/gal only $2.69. Worth the trip to town. As I walked in the front door of Fred Meyer, a Salvation Army “ringer” was at the donation pot with his banjo, singing Christmas songs. I stopped and joined him singing, “Deck the Halls.” His photo was in the paper tonight, from the day before:A singing musician surely beats ringing a bell in a closed room at the store’s entrance.

I still need to read postal mail from the past two days. Finally, did. Thanks for all the beautiful Christmas cards. We are not getting any mailed out this year, and haven’t even thought about a wrap-up of this year’s activities for the blog. We’ll probably come up with a short one to have on our weekly blog, around Christmas.

I called Discover card after receiving a strange email. All is well, we have a new card since a fraudulent return was refunded 9-15-19, and all changes are made. If I get another email message about my old 3137 number, I have a “fraud report” email to forward it to at Discover, if I get another. Scams are on the upturn, especially this time of year. Now I need to be sure there are no auto-pays using that number. I’m looking at every transaction on the statement when it arrives each month.

Supper: Broccoli-Cauliflower-Havarti cheese in mushroom soup, with a little piece of John’s homemade meatloaf and a half of a Cordon Bleu on the side.

Saturday, Dec 14

Another sleep-in morning for me after a late night, and early 5:45 awakening by companion cat, Czar. Because of the errant raccoon, we have to close our doggie/kitty door at darkness. He went out the front door but did not wish to go farther, so after sitting awhile, I invited him back in, sat down and petted his head and under his chin (which he dearly loves), and he went back to bed on his blankie. So, I went back to bed too.

I’ve been nibbling on things, and need to dress and take a thumb drive over to my friend Evie Schuetz in Kittitas to help me get some overly large videos taken Thursday of our music up to YouTube. My transfer rate is too low to process, and she has a very good setup for transferring at high speed through Charter. She has offered to do them for me. I need to check on their offering and if it is even available in our location. Last time we checked, nothing except DSL was available, and it is not fast enough. Our local land-line company is now called Consolidated Communications.

John is out. A once-a-year thing is to cut live poplar trees and take two 3 foot sections to the raclette. The green wood resists catching fire when we dump glowing coals between the pieces. This provides the semi-controlled heat for melting an overhanging block of cheese. He got back in time for me to make the trip to Kittitas, and I took along my camera just in case I saw something worth photographing. Our Kittitas Valley was filled with fog again, and Kittitas itself was fog ridden. As I left, I drove back through areas of fog that weren’t there on my trip down. I’ll put some of my photos of that trip in a link below.Top: Fog in the valley, bottom a lone Bald Eagle

Follow this link to get to 30 photos of my round trip to Kittitas, WA:

Trip to Kittitas 12-14-19

I put my two videos from Thursday on a Thumb drive and drove them to Evie in Kittitas, to put on her porch for her to find when she got back home. I gave her accolades up on Thursday, when we performed it and I posted it.

I’d better finish the dishes after finding a bird photo to share with the photographers’ FB site: UKC Photographers. I found it and shared it, with this comment:

Birds on a Bush photo follow-up to Scott Seymour’s “A Gathering of Goslings” photograph: This I captured yesterday while visiting Meadows Place, an assisted living home in Ellensburg. I thought this was a great commentary pictured. {John says, birds can’t read.}Birds on a Bush, near the entry to Meadows Place.

John brought a bucket with ice water into the kitchen and we soon had water on the rug and composite flooring. A make-work project.

We had a piece of chocolate cake before hitting the hay. It had a lot of frosting so we left off the ice cream.
John managed to get to bed before I did.

Sunday, Dec 15

A week late on getting the photos from the Grange Christmas dinner, but here it is:

Swauk-Teanaway Grange Christmas, 12-8-19 pix by Nancy

Near the start, I met a photographer from Roslyn, Ginger Stogdell, and she told me of the UKC Photographers group on Facebook. She invited me to join, when she saw me taking photographs.

Busy all day with projects, still have to finish blog draft and get all the photos handled, blog text first. During the sunniest part of the afternoon John cut a little firewood that he will place up at the end of the driveway, with an “exotic” wood/free sign. Someone takes it within 3 days.

I just emailed the Emeriti group the stuff from last Wednesday’s meeting. I also called and had a nice phone conversation with my friend Morris Uebelacker. His birthday was yesterday.

Hope your week was fine.

Nancy and John
Still on the Naneum Fan

Not so Nasty News Dec 13th

Item #1: Chocolate
Bad time of year for dogs. Especially small dogs. The photo here (from the web) shows several wrapped packages about the size and shape of fancy candy.
The chemicals in chocolate are not good for dogs. Small amounts can cause a dog to vomit, and larger doses can cause a racing heart, seizures or death.
Cats would show similar symptoms but generally won’t rip packages open and eat the entire box.
A box of specialty seasonal chocolate pieces is a modern mystery. Is there “dark” chocolate therein? If so, think of “dark” as bad then, for your dog. Is the box the same size as 20 or 30 years ago? Likely so. Is there as much inside the box as there was? Likely not. Same price – – more air!

Put your chocolate where the dogs can’t get to it.

(Dogs are also sensitive to grapes, raisins, onions, garlic and Xylitol, a sweetener used in gums and candies.)

Item #2: A pain in the back
This photo shows shelves with pain medication. Note Advil on the top left. Tylenol and Excedrin are near the top.
Down at ankle level note Icyhot and Salonpas. There are various types, including patches meant to sooth back pain.
I saw a note from a guy that assumed he was much taller now than years ago. He based this on the fact that when he wants to pick something up it takes much longer to get the job done. Reaching that extra distance just takes longer.
No one over 70 would put back pain medication near the floor.

Item #3: Christmas photos
You might need a photo for your Christmas card. Some ideas.

Item #4: Remember Harvey? Harvey was a 6 foot 3.5 inch invisible rabbit that traveled around with Elwood (played by Jimmy Stewart), often found at their favorite bar, Charlie’s. Harvey is a pooka, a benign but mischievous creature from Celtic mythology.
I thought of this 1950s film when I saw the photo of the pink bunny. I can’t say why in that pink and invisible don’t mesh.
Anyway, the pink bunny was given to a little girl in Saskatoon. Much else was given to the very needy family, but the pink bunny is the central character in this story.
A Christmas Story

Item #5: Garden cash?
One of the more interesting stories this week is about cash. Many countries from around the world have done their sums and discovered they have printed more bills than now are around. Where are they?
Where are you hiding your cash?
In the case of the USA, NZ and other such, much of the cash (apparently) is sent or taken to other countries. Socking those bills away provides some protection against economic turmoil, especially in countries with a record of instability in their own financial systems. Ruth Judson, a Federal Reserve economist, has been investigating this issue.
{Notes copied and pasted from The Wall Street Journal}
Sometimes bank notes are buried in the garden, where they start decomposing, or hidden in attics, where they are used by mice for building nests. Construction workers recently dug up an estimated $140,000 buried in packages at a site on Australia’s Gold Coast, prompting a police search to find the trove’s owner.

In September, a court in Germany ruled on a case brought by a man who stuffed more than 500,000 euros in a faulty boiler only to see it incinerated when a friend made a fix on a cold day while he was on vacation. The man sued his friend for the value of the lost bank notes plus interest. He lost.
In the comments following the WSJ article several people claimed to have a few dollars in an envelope or other stash. I liked this comment by Preston E. – – It ain’t me.

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

Start the season

Monday, Dec 2

We started early this morning, John before me, with him feeding and taking care of the horses. I started by unloading the dishwasher, and reloading it. I had things to complete on email associated with this week’s activities and planning for them and am still in the process. At least the planning for the music for the month of December has been sent. Now I await responses from the group, so I can arrange for the correct number of chairs to be set up for our arrival, Thursday at 1:30 p.m. This effort is much like herding cats, but is necessary.

Now John is out and the sun is shining, with the temperature finally above freezing, at 33.8° just before noon. He had to repair (soften the handle) on the push broom, and now is out pushing snow off the porch and driveway.
Below I caught photos of the new “lined” shirt (Merry Christmas, John!) when he was on the porch fixing the handle, and then doing a little push-brooming with Annie tagging along as his companion. John fixing handle, and then using it with Annie following.

He’s out of sight now, so I assume he’s down in the pasture loading manure into the pickup truck. He figured yesterday he had about 1/3 filled. After it is loaded he will have to fix a time to go to the vineyard.

I’m working on my report from the wellness visit with our PCP Chelsea Newman, to take to our appointment tomorrow morning.
John will be in later to make a list of his medications, such as I have, and we have to remember to have her write a prescription to refill two of his.

Email message just before Noon from our sister, Peggy, in Parma, OH, that her cataract surgery went well. We had forgotten to put her date on our calendar, so emailed her a note back, and then I queued up a Jacquie Lawson thinking of you card to send, with an autumn flower/fruit arrangement: Consisting of flowers, berries, leaves, pine cones, wheat, fruits (pomegranates), and one opened at the end of the animation to display reddish purple seeds. To my knowledge I have never eaten a pomegranate, nor tried to de-seed one). I wonder what use people make of them? This was part of the card which got me off on this track.I guessed the fruit that started in the animated card, whole, was a pomegranate, after seeing this at the end. I honestly didn’t know. So I looked them up and found this video:

The BEST Way to Open & Eat a Pomegranate

After watching that, I knew I had never held one before, and certainly never eaten the seeds. I now wonder what they taste like. Every day provides a new learning experience. Isn’t that cool?

John got back to the house at 12:30, having loaded only a little more manure into the pickup. We were both hungry, so he fixed some brunch: Leftover “stew” from freezer, warmed in iron skillet. The contents are: Chicken, carrots, lima beans, potatoes (home fries), onions, and red peppers. I had fewer of the potatoes with mine and two different pieces of toast (English Muffin bread & 3-cheese Semolina).

John went back outside while the sun is shining and the temperature is still above freezing.
I need to set up things to take tomorrow on our way back through Ellensburg to a young woman for her and her daughter, and get the stuff into the car we will be driving, probably John’s Crosstrek. We loaded some bins for organizing the 3 yr. old’s toys, and added some Christmas cards I had to others I’d picked up for her from a friend south of Ellensburg. This gal is visually impaired and cannot drive, so I (and others in town) try to pick up stuff and get it to her.

I wrote Katrina (senior center) about a suggested addition to the Agenda for the 10th Dec Senior Advisory Commission meeting.
I am finishing sorting the cleaned clothes, loading the dishwasher, and working on the schedule for our music group for this Thursday (and for the other 4 days we play in December).

Supper: Split Green Pea soup (given to us in a can), with John’s additions of crinkled sweet potatoes, mushrooms, and sausage link pieces. He made some awesome cheesy biscuits to accompany the soup.
Resting before taking my shower.

Tuesday, Dec 3

Sunrise by Lise McGowan, described by her on Facebook as “Rise and shine” say our pasture friends!!! 20°F and holding. Beautiful blessed morning to start the day!

We got up early to get to our Cle Elum PCP by check-in at 9:45, leaving our house at 9:00. John had to feed the horses and start his car to warm it up for the trip. Most of our trip was fine, but the last few miles were in dense fog. We got there in time and checked in. We didn’t have too much paperwork, and I went around to the lab to give a urine sample.

My doctor’s nurse was waiting outside the bathroom door and took me to be weighed and go through my vitals. That didn’t take long and she helped me with the gown for my examination.
My doctor came in and we went over a few things, reviewed my paperwork and the PFT report I brought. She looked on her computer and it had been sent to my file there, so that was nice. She ordered my refills for the year, and then gave me a thorough going over including different things I’d never had done before, and some I had.

Once done, I went back to the waiting room to wait for John. We were out and drove to the S. Cle Elum post office to mail a large envelope to friends on the west side we’d been with the Saturday before for an early family Thanksgiving (our neighbors across the road, the Swedberg’s). We wanted to visit our friend at the P.O. because it’s been awhile since we saw the family. I wanted to tell him how much we enjoyed viewing on Facebook their recent trip to Cooper Lake to cut their Christmas tree with their young son, Miles. I was a teaching colleague with his mom, Jen Lipton, at CWU Geography.Miles ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ Stefan, Postmaster ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ Miles & Jen

From there we went to the Cle Elum Bakery for more treats for lunch and later. Got two plates of day old bakery goods, Bearclaws and Danish pastries, and fresh, 2 Apple Fritters for me.
We called sister Peggy for her report of the follow-up to her eye surgery this morning. Talked all the way to Ellensburg. All is well.

Once in town, we stopped at several places: grocery shopping, checking numbers at Bi-Mart and buying cough drops, and then went by the Dollar Tree to return two purchases that wouldn’t work for my needs, after opening one and realizing it was the wrong item. On to climb stairs to the Maximus Gym for my Probiotic that will last 4 months. My FitBit gave me 3 flights of stairs credit for the two steeply stepped parts of the staircase I climbed.

From there by a gal’s house to deliver two plastic bins for organizing her daughter’s toys, a bunch of new Christmas cards, and on to the community bread room for some rolls. We are given the opportunity to get day old bread for volunteering music on Wednesdays at the FISH food bank. The rolls are for a Sunday dinner.

Wednesday, Dec 4

Called Genworth Financial, and we are set for our Long Term Care Payment increase in premium March 2, 2020. Talked to a gal in the Philippines, where it is currently 1:14 a.m. [Genworth was hatched by General Electric Capital in 2004.]

Finally got the chair count completed and sent off to request 10 chairs tomorrow for our playing at the Rehab. Now I have to organize the December music to use for 3 players and for the audiences. I managed to locate all of it this afternoon, at the end of our hallway, where I keep music to use through the year, and John was kind to bring in my music carrier with the stuff from October & November in it, so I can replace with December’s.

Finally, I think I have all the music together for tomorrow… for 3 players and audience. (too much paper used, but 20 copies).

Thursday, Dec 5

After an unintelligible email from Kaiser Permanente (KP) mail order pharmacy about an upcoming delivery, I called to verify what had been sent. I found out it was my 2.5 mg tablets of Coumadin (Warfarin). My prescription refills had been sent Tuesday from the PCP’s office visit, to the KP pharmacy for both strengths I take weekly. However, the 5 mg tablets refill should have been sent to Safeway pharmacy in Ellensburg, where they will halve the pills for me (and save lots of money on the purchase). KP will not provide that service.

Played December (winter and Christmas) music at the Rehab for a large audience. Those there: Gerald, Jeanne in wheelchair, Dean, Nancy, Amy, Sharon, Charlotte, Amy, Sandy. The group, with Dean’s leadership, crafted a beautiful Christmas card from the Kittitas Valley Fiddlers & Friends. I’m honored and appreciative. It’s worth displaying, so meaningful. I’ve put the front of the card at the top, and here is the rest.

On the way home, I picked up fast-food sandwiches (Johns fixing fries), my meds, signed a card at AAC, went by the bread room, and then came home and finished packing cameras and stuff for the IAF meeting at CWU. We ate supper, and I drove us in to campus, because of the special CWU parking sticker on my car. We enjoyed a good lecture, and got home a little after 9:00 p.m. It’s now after 11:00, and John has gone to bed. I’m following as soon as I shut down my computer. I did manage to take all the photos and videos off my cameras.

Tonight for the local chapter of the Ice-Age Floods Institute, we had an exciting lecture by Marli Miller, Senior Instructor II, in the Dept. of Earth Sciences, Univ. of Oregon, Eugene, OR, about two books she’s written on the geology of both states.

First, an Introduction video by Nick Zentner to the evening:

Nick Zentner Intro to Marli Miller

Video’s title slide–presentation at Ice Age Floods Institute, Dec 5

Marli Miller: Assembling the Northwest–A Roadside View of Oregon & Washington Geology

During Marli’s presentation she shared a fascinating comment of the Ice Age Floods height as being higher than the Vista House on the Columbia River.

Following the lecture, Marli orchestrated an engaging discussion session with our audience’s insightful questions.

The video link follows with the content:

Marli Miller: Questions & Answers Discussion

Top – during the Q&A discussion; lower – her incredible web site of hundreds of her photographs of geology around Earth, and her generosity in making them accessible to anyone (with credits to her). Definitely check out this educational site.

With its spectacular mountain ranges, lush valleys and tumbling rivers, the Northwest landscape attracts nature lovers and travelers from around the world. But the rain-soaked coast ranges, snow-covered volcanoes and expansive high desert didn’t appear overnight. They formed through a variety of geologic processes over millions of years.

Geologist and Photographer Marli Miller will outline the geology of Oregon and Washington as seen along our federal and state highways.

Beginning with our plate tectonic setting, she will describe the process of continental growth that forms the underlying but diverse ‘basement’ of the region. The basement is readily apparent in the Coast Range, North Cascades, Okanogan, Klamath, and Blue Mountains. Following that, a photographic “roadtrip” along I-84 and Washington State Highway 14 in the Columbia River Gorge will illustrate many of the younger features that make our landscape so unique.

Miller is the author of Roadside Geology of Oregon, 2nd Edition, and most recently, Roadside Geology of Washington, 2nd Edition, which she wrote with UW’s Darrel Cowan, her major Ph.D. adviser.

She is a Senior Instructor in the Department of Earth Sciences at the University of Oregon.

Copies of her books will available at the event.

Tonight after I was in bed, I heard a loud bump at our front door and had to take time to run off a raccoon that jumped up on the feeding ledge at our front door. Woody had come back for a night snack and we forgot to bring it in when she left. Those raccoon critters are NOT welcome around our home.

Friday, Dec 6

Early morning call from Linda Lundy, with a surprise gift from our musical past. I need to get back in touch with her and arrange a time to go over for a visit and receive it. More when that happens.

John’s leaving to arrive at White Heron Cellars’ Mariposa Vineyard with a pick-up truck load of horse manure for the vines. There is a section high on the slope where deer will come and eat the pomace (left over skins and seeds) that Cameron can use closer to the winery and house. Deer are not fond of horse poo so it will add organic material, and not get eaten.

Cameron sent a photo of the load of manure unloaded. The rear of the truck was completely full, and we have lots more. This was the second load of 1st Class Tennessee Walking Horse manure.

Cameron was kind enough to send me back 3 bottles of wine–Rose’ of Syrah and Roussanne).

I took a box of magazines from our place to Kittitas to give to a gal who is making Dream and Vision Boards (by working with people to cut meaningful words to their dreams or vision and pictures to display on the poster board. She was thrilled with the variety of the magazines we gave her.

Kayleen called about pharmacies at 1:44. I was bringing in groceries and heard the phone ring, so got it. I need to check the Good Rx price at Safeway for levothyroxine and at Super 1. Let her know if going to Safeway is preferred. Or to change to Super 1. Ending decision, change to Fred Meyer Pharmacy, it’s cheaper yet. Now I have to check the others at Safeway to see if they are also cheaper at Fred Meyer or at Kaiser Permanente mail order. This difference in cost is mind boggling and unnecessary. We wish all the medical expenses stuff was a lot simpler.

John got home a little after 2:30. He’d stopped for donuts for the trip home, and also got us a box of Honeycrisp apples. Big babies! (only nine in the box).. if smaller, they pack 12 in.

I had a long talk with Terri Towner and caught up on her health, and told her I would send her some materials about my losing weight in a healthy way, which was not dieting.

Saturday, Dec 7

I slept in incredibly long this morning, because I was quite late getting to bed with cat-related issues, and was up before dawn with cat-related activities. Woody gets up early.

I started by continuing with getting things into the dishwasher, but still need to finish that chore. And, then went to work on the blog, mainly working on the follow-ups to the photos and videos from Thursday night’s presentation. I have a lot of email things to catch up on that will have to wait until later.

We were late eating brunch at just before 2:00 p.m. (consisting of an egg with English Muffin toasting bread slices with Apricot Jam for me, sausage, & home fries). Now at almost 3:00 p.m., he’s taking off for town to buy horse feed at the Co-Op, drop off something for a friend,get some cat food from Bi-Mart, go by Super 1 for some eggs for us and some Sweet’N Low sugar substitute (bulk) for me.

John made it home at 4:05, and is out feeding the horses in the fast approaching cold and darkness.

This just arrived from my Brittany family in Lancaster, CA where Daisy (our co-owned Brittany) I have mentioned before resides.

This was published on Facebook this afternoon, with the following description by Jeri Conklin.

Congratulations to Emily Montoya of Team Stephen Cabral and to GCH Camelot’s Coppers Rollin Four Dice JH on their BOB and Sporting Group 3rd placement today under breed and group judge, Mr. Terry Stacy, over a nice ring of specials.

Jeez, a raccoon was in our house at 6:30 p.m.! It came in through the doggie door, and left that way. In the middle of the night, I guess he was in last night, and I walked down the hall to go to the bathroom, and heard the doggie door close, but when I got to where Annie normally sleeps she was there, asleep. The cats do not make a loud noise when they come through the door, but this was loud. I now know it must have been the raccoon. We have the window closed, but unsure what we will do for nights, other than close the window and let the animals use our doors (patio and front). During daylight we think we can have the animal in-out setup function as they need.

I forgot to put in this link to a Christmas In Kittitas celebration that occurred tonight.

Here is a link to my friend Evie Schuetz’s photos taken that evening. Only 15 but very nice. Kittitas, WA is the town we almost moved to in 1989. We had a house picked out, but the deal fell through. I have enjoyed being only 10 miles away, especially when the WOTFA (Washington Old Time Fiddler’s Association) had summer workshop camp there for 22 years. I was able to live at home and drive over for daily classes for a week, and participate in night events.

The town has all sorts of celebrations, and we only recently heard of this one (a day late).

Christmas in Kittitas, Dec 7, ’19 – Photos by EvieMae Schuetz

Sunday, Dec 8

This is a Grange community dinner day. I did not sleep in this morning. I cleaned up two platters and put my name on them. Packed rolls in 4 plastic bags. We loaded non-perishable goods in a box to donate for the food baskets in Upper County. We came up with 15 items; mostly cans. It was heavy and filled a box that had dog bones packed in it.

I sent a call for chair count out this morning for this Thursday’s playing at the Meadows Place. We may have a good turn-out.

Got ready to go to the Grange and left at 11:30. The valley closer to the Yakima River and I-90 [800 feet lower than our place] was hidden by a low cloud of fog. We were in full sun and the top of the cloud was brilliantly white. We took a back road detour and did not have to get into it.

We took a bunch of Whole Wheat rolls (24) and Multi-Grain rolls (24) to be our side offering for the Community Christmas Dinner at the Swauk-Teanaway Grange, on Ballard Hill, in Cle Elum. We go every year. John wears my old Merry Christmas sweater, and I had on a Cardinal vest today that is very Christmassy with a white blouse and dark green pants. You’ll see some photos in the collection we took today. We sat across the table with old-time friends from Thorp, Ellen & Roger Fischer.

The Grange furnished the turkey (they cooked one full turkey and 7 turkey breasts), mashed potatoes (they pared 90 lbs.). I wonder how many people were there. I asked and Bev got back to me their best estimate was 150. I estimated >100 and the servers ate after others had left.

Coming home we saw the fog bank again, still in the Kittitas Valley, but we had been above it in the sun all day.
View from 2,500 feet on Highway 97, looking south.

Wind Turbines Hwy 97 Fog Bank Kittitas Valley

And we came back through the fog for a little part of our return trip. We were soon out of the fog and then could see a new blinking STOP sign a mile ahead. It is at the ‘T’ where Hungry Junction meets Look Road. It, and several others around, are powered by the Sun. You will see a video of it now, short but sweet. We are approaching a solar-driven stop sign with lights around the edge. It really shows up nicely in the dark, from way away.

Special Solar-Lighted Stop Sign

I hope to have some photos to show tonight, from today’s Christmas dinner, but they may not get finished until tomorrow morning. So, if there is not anything here, check back tomorrow.

LINK TO COME to photos of the Swauk Teanaway Community Christmas Dinner.

Meanwhile, here are a couple of teasers: our garb & meals.Nancy’s meal and John’s meal. {We need to work on the in-door color settings for this camera.}

Hope your week was fine.

Nancy and John
Still on the Naneum Fan

Not so Nasty News December 6th

Item #1: A brief disappearance

I don’t think Czar was grinning. He wandered into our big shed while I was moving bundles of old papers, 15 pounds or so wrapped in baling twine. There were 5 or 6 bundles and one cardboard box.
I did not notice him and closed the doors about 2 o’clock in the afternoon.
After dark we began to wonder where he was. That’s about 5.
About 9:30 it occurred to me that I should call him, and as I stood up I remembered trekking forth and back with the paper bundles.
So I found him there in the dark. He followed me out with a string of continuous “meows” that may, or may not, have had something to do with his opinion of me.
The image above is from: Cheshire Cat – – Wikipedia.

Illustrator John Tenniel envisioned the cat in this manner for the 1865 publication Lewis Carroll’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. The distinctive mischievous grin is now associated with Alice, but origins of the phrase “grinning like a Cheshire Cat” pre-date Wonderland.
There is this one from a 1788 dictionary: “ He grins like a Cheshire cat; said of any one who shows his teeth and gums in laughing.
I don’t know how I knew this, but I do not like photos of me or others with a big grin.
Anyway, after eating, drinking, and (we hope) going to the potty, Czar came in and bedded down for a long sleep.

Item #2: Why are things out of place?

Frequently in grocery stores we see things on shelves where they do not belong. If a store employee is nearby, or if the item is normally frozen or cold, we alert someone. Waste is a cost and we prefer that our costs are low.
The photo below was on the web (somewhere).
The person posting this put a caption at the top.
“A decision was made here …”

Item #3: Keeping to the milk versus wine theme

I can’t remember when I last ingested milk, directly.
My “dairy” is limited to ice cream and cheese. Much more than wine, actually. I found this image but it used ‘beer” bottles. I wanted to send it to our vineyard and winery friends so I adjusted it.Thus, this is not about me.

Item #4: Your car? Hope not.

Item #5: Heaven’s sake!

A person from Australia has quit trying to get people to use apostrophes in the manner he believes appropriate. He admits to losing the battle.
Search with “apostrophe misuse” and go to images. Two of my favorites follow:

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

week of giving thanks

Monday, Nov 25

John made corrections to blog on spelling of Evie Schuetz’s name. Remember U before E as in my friend, M. Uebelacker.
Unloaded dishwasher and loaded it again. Constant chore at our home. John’s the cook; I’m the bottle washer.

Sent out count for KVF&Fs last night. Follow-up today. Charlotte, Evie, Charlie, Dean, Sandy, & me are coming Wednesday.

Called Hospital Imaging Dept. to follow up on Susan’s call from Cle Elum that Chelsea’s referral was sent for my Mammogram and Bone Density Scan to KV hospital. Dates determined today were: Dec 11 – Mammogram, Wed. 10:30 check in, 10:45 supposedly takes 15 minutes, because I have to be at Food Bank for music at 11:15 a.m. I have an okay from Evelyn, if I’m running late. Then I must take my Amoxicillin at noon (while we are still playing), and be at the Dentist at 1:00 p.m. for a cleaning, but staying afterward for 2 teeth to be looked at that are cracked off. I checked with Tiffany that my antibiotic will last long enough for the 2 hours of work.
The Bone Density scan has to wait until January, and that’s scheduled on the new 2020 calendar for Jan 21.

I arranged clothes to take to the Discovery Shop tomorrow and John put a box of 10 cartons of shoes, some with more than 2 pair/box, in the back of our car for the first stop in Yakima.

John is out raking horse manure into piles for eventual use in the Mariposa Vineyard where he prunes wine grapevines. While outside, he plans to go drill some holes into a posts at the front gate entrance he’s been working on. Below is the start of this: Left setting new pole at Rd.; right; the new gate has red, white, and blue stiffeners to alert drivers, or the wayward cow, that it is there. Left at the end of drive; right the set-off of new gate allows trucks with trailers to get completely off of Naneum before encountering a gate. The 2 vertical posts (right image) were set 15 years ago with this in mind. Procrastination?!
The horizontal logs were placed the year after the logging truck tipped over – Feb. 16, 2015. They are about 40 feet long.

Talked with Mario about hay delivery. I have sent him the explanation of bill pay and the check will be delivered to his postal box a week after we have the delivery and know the cost for the 15 tons he’s bringing us. I have shared the setup of his company, High Valley Hay, on the bill pay system.

Supper: Smoked turkey, Cheez-its, butternut squash with toasted marshmallows top, and PowerAde. Dessert cherry pie with our pie cherries made by Ken Swedberg, and a small point of a chocolate cake piece. John shared some of the cherry pie too.

Tuesday, Nov 26

Today, we left at 8:45 for the Discovery Shop and Costco.
American Cancer Society Discovery Shops
EBRG does not have a Discovery Shop. The Yakima one is just 5 blocks from the main corner, and seems to have lots of visitors. John talked to one of the workers, and looked at the awards, plaques, and all the goods. They had sold a lot of Halloween and Thanksgiving things and were finishing putting out Christmas goods. The room for all the glass and plastic stuff (example in photo; from web) is separate from the clothing. There was a shirt that said something like “I’m saving Santa a stop. I’ve been very naughty.”

So that was our first stop. We dropped off a bag of clothes and accessories, picked up some blank donor receipts for future bags to get down there. Found out some more information, including they do not want any underclothes, except for excellent condition bras, no panties out of the package, but they would take camisoles. While there, we delivered a large box with women’s shoes in 10 boxes.

We bought $404.69 worth at Costco; that’s a record, I believe. And, as we were leaving, we had lunch there for $9.87, so total charged, $414.56 on our VISA Costco card will reward us 2% rewards in February ($8.29). Our lunch was a large piece of combo pizza, hot dog & Pepsi, and a Turkey Provolone Sandwich, most of which we brought home to add to other meals. While there we had dessert—a frozen Yogurt sundae, with a very large amount of strawberries swirled in. By the time we got home, it was finished.
Well, what an assortment of gifts for ourselves. John got a nice padded shirt jacket in a 2XL size. It was the only XX-large one of all the ones on the shelf (we both liked the Blue Plaid better, but all the other colors were available only in S, M, and L. No XL, except that one, in a green / gray color plaid. My chosen gift was an external disk storage drive of 5 TB for $30 off. My smaller one has been going on the fritz, and I need to back up everything on it, and the stuff currently on my computer, in addition to another smaller external drive. 5 TB should handle the need, with space left over for continuing. Also received $3.00 off on packages of AAA and AA batteries of which we seem to go through many.
Besides all sorts of food (many different kinds of seafood), we got a fruitcake only one because I thought we had another in the freezer, but John says we don’t. Once home we had a nice big piece. I wish I had bought two, although the space in our freezer is dwindling. We’re not planning to go back before next year, so will lose out on getting another this year.
Took care of the dog’s needs and our paper needs (towels & TP), plus some $3 off containers of Multi-Vitamins. I try hard to get our OTC meds when they are significantly marked down on price. To us the place was very busy, but we found an “end” lane that was not aligned with the main aisles so we saved time by not waiting in a long line. Luckily, we went through the pharmacy/pills section and that led to the (hidden) end lane.

We came back through EBRG to fill my car with gasoline from Fred Meyer and to check our Bi-Mart numbers. We didn’t win anything today, and only got 3₵/gal reduction in the gasoline. I thought we were entitled to a lot more. Oh well, live and learn. At least last week, John received 20₵/gal. off when he filled his truck.

Wednesday, Nov 27

We awoke to several inches of snow and by the time I left it was 4”, blowing and drifting.
I got some photos of the quail and John’s Crosstrek still covered with snow. He had put sunflower seeds out for the birds. Little birds will come and go all day, quail morning and evening. The invaders – European Collared Doves – have to be chased away except from a cage-like affair that they can’t fit into.These images show undisturbed snow on the car, and what we call the ‘cable table’ with the lower part covered with snow. Wind blew that in there. We call that part the veranda, and the cats like to lay there.

John push-broomed a lot of snow, fed the horses, and went to town for a fasting blood draw. The plows were scraping the road, and putting grit at the intersections, and we didn’t have any trouble except watching for slick spots along the way. Ellensburg did not have nearly as much snow. North of us Blewett Pass (4,100 ft.) had 14” and was closed for a couple hours because of spin-outs and collisions. The I-90 road from Ellensburg to Vantage was closed as well because of ice and blowing snow.

John brought me stuff from the back seat of my car from the Discovery Shop, I brought back home from yesterday’s visit they did not want. I need to summarize and change the content of the donation slips itemization. Still awaits being done.

I finished loading and running the dishwasher in the morning. Called Gloria, her sister Shirli, and Clare about coming today to the Garden Room to hear our music. I put music together for Charlie’s and my books and for Lou and Sandy’s. I wrote a note to the Emeriti group about meeting there on December 11 (2nd Wednesday).
Needed to get to Hearthstone before 1:30 to meet Glenn; I did and gave him his two loaves of bread from Costco. I went by Pam Brown’s house on the way from Hearthstone with Gloria on our way to the Community Thanksgiving Dinner, and picked up a gifted Xmas serving platter.

Gloria’s and my trip to the Armory was rewarded by a good meal: lots of turkey, dressing, mashed potatoes, not so much gravy as I would have preferred, mixed vegetables of carrots, peas, green beans, and corn, a large roll w/ butter, and cranberries (which I love but cannot have with one of my medications. Dessert: pumpkin pie. We had nice visits with people at our table, and with folks walking by that knew Gloria from church, or from the SAIL class at the Senior Center. She enjoyed the trip very much.

Today while I was gone for music at Hearthstone, and then with my friend Gloria, to the Community Thanksgiving Dinner (CTD), John stayed home to work on projects. One of the most important projects he did was to remove and install lift supports on the truck’s canopy that keep the back window propped up, while loading or unloading the bed of the pickup. See the picture on the left below for those. On the right is of a gift I picked up after our music at Hearthstone, on my way to the CTD with Gloria. I had donated money to cover purchasing 10 turkeys for the dinner, so I thought I ought to eat. I know each year they plan food for 300 people, and this year they baked 34 turkeys for the event.

Through the weekend, this is free for a download of the music arrangement.
Christian Howe – Jazz Violin Solo Arrangement, Somewhere Over the Rainbow
I think the video will remain, but the free arrangement seems to be a limited time thing. I learned of this in an early morning email, but didn’t open it until this evening.

I’ll never have the ability with my range of motion in my left shoulder (with severe arthritis and bone-on-bone, spurs, & cysts) to ever play this, but he sent this video, and a free download of the score for the piece, and a special “Black Friday gifts” worth over $125 which I will download for review. It’s a set of lessons which will last for 30 days, and I will try to make time to go through them.
John and I went to his last concert here at the CWU Music Building in Ellensburg, and I went to a free afternoon workshop for community members and music students to learn various techniques for playing stringed instruments. He’s a great person and teacher. I don’t remember how long I have known him, but I follow him regularly and am on his email notification list for his planned concerts and teaching opportunities.

Thursday, Nov 28 Happy Thanksgiving

Happy Thanksgiving Day – – But we have snow.
If you did not get a Happy Thanksgiving Card from us, below is a link to take you there. I did not mail to everyone in my Jacquie Lawson animated card database. So, if you didn’t see it, please visit here to see the reason the card is so personal to us:

Happy Thanksgiving Card 2019 from Hultquists

I slept in this morning until almost 9:00 a.m. I’m sure I needed it. John went out to feed Myst and the horses, and gave the others some of the pellets and corn Myst has been getting to increase her weight. They were delighted to be included. It has been quite cold.

I called my friend Gloria’s sister, Shirli, to wish them a Happy Thanksgiving. They were having a magnificent Thanksgiving dinner today at Hearthstone: turkey and all sorts of side dishes, plus a choice of two desserts (pumpkin and pecan pie).
This morning was my diuretic pill day and I finished putting in the rest of my meds for this week’s mornings. Glad we stayed home.
It’s very cold here, 9° one morning, but days are low 20s, no sun, but no snow. We’ll be home for the next 5 days, so should be able to catch up a little on all the many projects.

We are giving thanks, however, for all the blessings in our lives.

I sent a few cards out (Happy Thanksgiving) and got some interesting responses: This from Donna Bates, in Condon, OR: “A very snowy thanksgiving here. About 10 inches but with the wind that came with it, we have waist high drifts. Had 18 people for dinner and 19 that couldn’t come!”
(John said we were fortunate that the storm was mostly south of us.)

Our friend, Jeri Conklin, sent a photo of her Brittanys playing in the snow in Lancaster, CA; 50 miles north of Los Angeles.Before the snow was over they received 2 more inches. Left to right, liver & white–Xena, orange & white—Daisy, my co-owned dog, registered as “Cedaridge Kip’s Camelot Shay Tre’ JH SH”, O&W Stormy, in front of Kurt Conklin standing, then O&W Chip, and L&W Ginny (Daisy’s mom). The letters at the end of the name stand for Junior Hunter (JH) and Senior Hunter (SH), awarded in Hunt Tests, different from field trials. She will be working on her Master Hunter title next year, with Jeri Conklin as her handler.

Long conversation tonight with a friend about her three recent surgeries, starting this September. Amazing what some folks are having to go through.

Friday, Nov 29

I called our medical insurance provider, Kaiser Permanente, and found out recommended shingles shots SHINGRIX (2 boosters 2 months apart) will be covered on our policy under the preventative care portion of our plan. That will save us several hundred $ and is good news (I checked the price and best estimate is $151/shot, but it varies widely according to the source.).

Brunch: Large blueberry/pecan pancake, with maple syrup, eggs, and sausage patties.
John worked outside a little, but it was only after the temperature went up to slightly over freezing. If it is windy he will wear a full coverall. Zip-up legs allows getting this off without removing boots.
Afternoon snack: piece of fruitcake from Costco.
Supper: Soup, Cordon Bleu, home fries, and buttered Parmesan topped toast. Dessert, brownie with dried tart cherries & nuts.

Saturday, Nov 30

Elise of NJ called. Lasted 45 minutes after we got rid of the echo; we had a lot of catching-up to do.
Carla Kaatz (wife of deceased colleague) called during my long distance call, and it just rings without allowing a message to be left. I called the number after my conversation ended, and her cell phone is now in my landline, and I need to put in my cell. Previously, I did not have it; only her landline.

Sunny and cold, still under freezing (30.2°) at 2:00 p.m. John left to go shovel manure into the back of his pickup truck where he placed a large tarp into the bed yesterday. He needs to fill it to take over to the Mariposa Vineyard at White Heron Cellars. He did that last year, and Cameron has spread the last of the pile, 11/11/19. He hopes to have better weather with no wind (which last year was intense) for the delivery.From the Naneum Fan, Tennessee Walker manure nourishes White Heron’s Mariposa vineyard.

Before he left he shoveled the snow off the concrete slab in front of our garage, which is part of the front yard where we feed cats and birds. During icy weather we carefully step through to the front gate and our vehicles and, if necessary, John spreads salt.

I’m working on projects: dishwasher loading & running, and about to start on the reference procedure for a student who started with me in 2005, has a job, but wants to become a substitute teacher on his days off. His oldest child is in the school, and he has been volunteering for two years.
Letters of reference as in the past are no longer used in many places. I have to go through a computer to fill in the information for his recommendation that goes to a folder on their computer.
I’ve only done the first step, and now must proceed with the rest. OK, I’m starting this procedure @ 3:41 p.m. & I lost my connection at 4:51; so glad I had snipped backups every so often through the process. I had to start completely over and re-enter all the responses. What a PITA! I finally finished, submitted, and logged out at 5:55 p.m.

Also, I’m editing a long message John wrote to our best man, Bill, in Cincinnati. He sent a link to an article about teaching large numbers of students and how times have changed. This is about a professor (from Australia) with 500 people in his class. In case you’re interested, here is a link below to the original article, which is so different from the teaching John and I experienced doing through the years.

High Tech for Higher Ed: An Australian engineering professor revamps student learning with teams

Sunday, Dec 1

It was snowing slightly this morning at 6:00, when I first awoke and put out food for Woody, but through the morning the rate of snow has varied – never a lot. John has fed the horses, and all the cats have been in for their morning vittles. The temps are warmer than they have been, so he intends to go out after lunch. Plans include cutting some brush and a small tree, moving snow, and getting more horse poo into the truck.

This morning we were taking care of filing our survey for the first Wellness visit to the PCP on Nov 22, and we are getting ready for the Tuesday follow-up Chronic visit this coming Tuesday, Dec. 3.
I also am following up on the correspondence started in previous days with friends around the world.

Brunch today: CheeseWurst sausage links, eggs, toast, & home fries.

I’m finishing up a few projects needing done yesterday, and then going to finish my part of the blog, so we can finish it before midnight.
I do have another list of things needing done – planning events next week.

I contacted Terri Towner about her health issues and her hubby Kevin’s right wrist/hand in a cast. They both have appointments with specialists this week, Tuesday & Wednesday. She’ll get back to my landline line with the results. We had an informative conversation this afternoon. They are down in Moxee, WA, east of Yakima.

Another afternoon snack: piece of fruitcake.
We’re planning leftovers for supper.

Hope your week was fine.

Nancy and John
Still on the Naneum Fan

Not so Nasty News Nov 29th

The northeast side of Mount Rainier from Crystal Mountain.
Region wide clear sky and no wind equals very cold mornings; 9°F. Friday.

Item #1: 3 o’clock in the morning
. . . . . . . . * * 2009 * * . . . . . . . .
Remembering Friday after Thanksgiving: Nancy had pain, woke me, and we were off to the local emergency room (11 miles). 10 years and many hundreds of miles later, we are still on the Naneum Fan. Amazing!

Item #2: High wind or maybe … Yakima Washington – 40 ft. Spruce tree

When it fell, the tree’s base that sat in a hole in the plaza appeared to shear off. City spokesman, Randy, said the tree will be a bit shorter when it is reinstalled, as crews will have to reshape the trunk to seat it.

Photo at right is from 2017 .The plaza has square blocks for the surface. Chainsaw Mike’s right toe has one in front, and a second block away is a hole. With the tree held by a crane, they have shaped the butt of the tree to taper and fit the hole from removal of one paving stone. Note the slab from the tree behind Green Vest Joe.
The 2019 crew tried a different method.
The right side photo (above) shows the butt of the 2019 tree that snapped. The chainsaw grooves show they cut most of the wood away and left a square portion, apparently, of a size to fit in the hole made from removing a single stone.
The tree looks to be about 20 inches across (314 sq. in.) and they left an 8 inch by 8 inch prong to go in the hole. They left just 20%, and it is not centered in the butt.
They had tensioned cables (guy-wires) to keep it upright.
Because of Thanksgiving, with city workers at a minimum, the tree won’t be put back up until Monday, Dec. 2nd.
Then they can decorate it. A 2016 photo here: Yakima Plaza Christmas Tree shows the scene.

I’m tempted to go down Monday (45 miles) to see what they do; how they shape it. I’d remove 3 more stone pavers and make the hole 4 times larger.

Item #3: not a pie
Thanksgiving is a time for cooking. So a tradition in my mother’s kitchen was Pecan pie. Today I learned that the thing is not a pie, at least not technically. It is a tart. I chopped a lot of pecans making something in the shape of a pie; we did not bake these with whole pecans.
Technically, a pie has a pastry top & bottom. Without the top, it is a tart. Single serving tarts are common but small size is not the defining characteristic. The term tassie is used for the small ones. The lemon & raspberry ones look yummie.
However, a custard pie is not a pie either, it’s a flan. Those things thrown toward people’s faces, often called custard pies, are not. Those who throw them are called flâneurs; at least in Europe.
Who knew?
Back to pie. The name is, perhaps, from the bird Magpie. One historian of the language has suggested that the food was named after the bird because the varied ingredients reminded people of the birds’ habit of collecting together all sorts of bits and pieces in their nests. The first pies in Britain contained a mixture of meat and vegetables, and made folks think of the Magpie’s nest.
Our neighborhood thanksgiving dinner was last Saturday, and tonight we are out of both turkey and pie. About time.

Item #4: ‘truck farm’
I was reading a news item about Vietnamese people found dead in a lorry.
I did know what a lorry is, but wondered where that term originated.
Here is a site that doesn’t actually answer the question because no one really knows.
a bit mysterious

Now here is the good part. Near the end of the text an explanation is given for the word ‘truck’ in the sense of ” “to have no truck with,” and from there to why a small farm selling fruits & veggies is called a truck farm.
Information in the comments is even more interesting, explaining why a vehicle we call a pickup is so called.
Early model Fords in rural areas would often have their bodies removed behind the front seat and their owners would lay boards across the frame to create a flat surface. Some would even put rails on the sides. These modified vehicles would be used to move various things, to move truck, and were referred to as “pick-up trucks” (the hyphen was later dropped), and that was how the vehicles were named even after commercial versions were manufactured (if you can find automobiles ads from American advertising in the 1960s and 1970s, you should be able to find this term easily or for a more current example, a Google search for “pickup truck” will display recent truck ads). By the 1980s, the use of “truck” to refer to ‘trash’ had fallen out of common usage, and many younger people didn’t know the classic definition. The term “pick-up truck” was too long to stick in modern American vernacular, and the “pickup” part was dropped. Leaving “truck” as the name of the vehicles.

The truck = trash definition is in a 1955 Webster’s Dictionary that I have. In an older one, this might be more prominent.

Item #5: Cooking a large bird

For many years we have had others do the cooking of the turkey at Thanksgiving. This year and last it was smoked. The chef, Rick, bought a large outdoor BBQ smoker like the one shown.
The fuel goes in the small part on the right (under the grating), and that to be cooked goes in the larger (left) side. Heat and smoke enter and pass across the grill and exit via the stack on the left.

The single panel from the cartoon of “Breaking Cat News” gave me a chuckle. Rick’s method ends a tradition. See the full cartoon at the link:
Tradition

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

People take photos

Monday, Nov 18

Beginning with two sunrise photos from my photographer friends in the Kittitas Valley, Lise and Evie.Barn Raising by Lise McGowan
This is a reconstruction in process of their barn destroyed by high winds that collapsed the barn onto their pickup totaling it, and flew a large piece of the roof into the window of their 2-story house. No animals or people were injured, thankfully.

Railroad house in Kittitas, WA by Evie Schuetz

Evie says: “That railroad house is right at the end of my street. There’s no story to it, it’s just been the neighborhood beacon as long as I’ve been alive. Pete said it was the water filling station for steam engines, but I don’t know how he would know that.”
[John guesses: this is a building that held a small wind-mill as shown in the (left) photo below. The bottom of the tank holding water need not be but a little bit higher than the storage tank on the train. Because water is heavy, the structure holding water (waiting for a train) has to be strong. Both tank holding structures have large “legs” that are vertical. The structures holding the blades to catch the wind (& pump water) are angled out as they come down. These have to deal with vibrations, but not a lot of weight.]

[Evie’s photo looks at the west end of the two buildings – the door faces north. The tracks would have been to the right, about 40 feet from the center. Sufficient room for a tank.]Called Bi-Mart, talked to Jordan, about GoodSense Artificial Tears problem, and will take mine in tomorrow to demo. Hopefully, he will take my warning today, for Megan (the buyer, who had already left the store), to remove them from the shelf.

Tuesday, Nov 19

I started at the Community Clothing Center to take by a donation of underclothes from friend that were too large for me; while there, I checked for some work shirts and stuff for John, and found several things for him (which I haven’t yet had time to show him), and two pair of socks and a knitted bucket hat for me made of St. Patrick’s Day colors. The neatest thing that happened was a chance meeting with the two women from Montana who are over to help Glenn sort out the craft things for weaving (looms, etc.) and knitting yarn from Anne’s estate to return to her friends in Montana. I thanked them and told them I would see them later at the house.

As I was coming out of the ECCC, I got a phone call from friend who wanted to deliver a document to me, so I told him where I would be in a few minutes (and he met me there—at the Liberty Theater annex). I was going there to eat a lunch (Homemade meatloaf, mashed potatoes, veggies, pears, and a piece of cake) before going by the AAC for a few shopping bags, and to take the rural electric utility’s magazine, RURALITE, to Gabe with stories of the history or their family’s Leather Shop (Don Bacon’s) on Thomas Road. They were the crafters of John’s western saddle, a beautiful piece of artwork he used for many years.

I went from there by Bi-Mart with eye drops, Artificial Tears, needed for the dry eye problem I have. I demoed the problem I was having opening the tops, and Megan realized that the company (GoodSense) had changed the top to a child safety lock opening one that kids could not open (so, it worked for me, this kid couldn’t open it). She showed me the trick, of squeezing the bottom of the cap to release it (still not easy), but she also showed me that the one I had from a previous bottle, could be exchanged. I will keep that and change it with each new bottle.

While there, I also bought a desktop calendar for 30% off and we will hang it on the wall in our kitchen to keep track of our scheduled appointments.

And, I checked our membership numbers. Ours matched the last digit, so I brought home a package of snacks (Almonds & Blueberries with sea salt). It will last until next spring’s trail work, unless we eat it first. From there I went to Fred Meyer. They and Safeway go crazy with special offerings on certain days but only if you buy a bunch – blah blah blah. With enough “points” you get some cents off a gallon of gas at their 2-blocks-away station. We don’t buy much at either store, but both are convenient, so sometimes we go.

When I got home, I called Rhonda (the manager) at Dollar Tree to see if she could order the mesh bags (3 zippered mesh bags in one bag). I can return the two I have not opened, when I find the receipt). Meanwhile, she will check to order the smaller ones I need (3 to a bag), and when they come in, she will call me. She has my number and home Ph.# home.

I sent Peggy Beals the information about Glenn, his email, and his address, and I sent his phone # for texting. I can’t text on my flip phone, so I did not have it, but I asked him on email. She is in charge of the Methodist Church’s Community Clothing Center, where Anne volunteered time, and all her clothes were being taken there.

Finally, this week we found that our attempt to use the bill pay system working directly from our checking account, worked when the check was cashed. Then the money is deducted and an image of the check is produced for our records on our monthly statement. Nice to have for charitable donations claimed on our tax form, and we don’t have to buy checks. I have run out of checks on one of my accounts that has a significant balance, so this was a way around it, a service offered by the bank. I guess we pay for it by them having some of our money in the checking account (with no interest). Currently, there is no direct cost having them do this.

Wednesday, Nov 20

A piece of Ellensburg’s History of downtown businesses.

Evie Schuetz alongside the sign displayed in the Kittitas County Historical Museum’s newly finished (almost) display of business history. This photo taken by Sadie Thayer, Museum Director. You have seen many special photos in this of Kittitas Valley scenes Evie has captured, and now you get to see her in the photo above.

This is the old Button Jewelers neon sign from a business that was in her family for many years, and she grew up from a little kid in her play area there, and working there later (see her memories inset below). The business closed the end of the year 2005; all family members always returned to work during the Christmas season.

The story of the business appeared in our local newspaper, the Daily Record (see link below).
The above photo preserves Ellensburg’s history through signs that have been restored and now able to be visited at the museum. The museum provides a treasure trove of artifacts from the region.

Check out their website, KCHM.ORG, and go in for an educational tour any time to view their displays. If you want to see them before the end of the year, the best time to mark on your calendar is Dec 18, from 6:00 to 8:00 for an open house, with refreshments. The special collections will be on display.

John and I are members of the museum. Recently, we donated a sign (metal, not neon) we were given. The sign was for a machine shop a mile from EBRG; and maybe the staff can find out more. I plan to take a photo of it when I’m there at the open house.

Here’s my introduction of some history I found on the web:

“End of an era: Button Jewelers closing at year’s end” by Paul Schmidt, Oct 12, 2005

1950s the store on the NW corner of 4th and Pine. Note the parking meters and traffic light. Today they’re gone.
Today, it houses Central Party & Costumes, owned by Eva Frink.

I am also friends with Eva and so this whole story interests me. I have been discussing the store with Evie and asked her for her memories of growing up there, of which she had shared pieces, previously. I think her story is worth repeating, so I asked for more and received these details 11/24/19 to include. I find this a fascinating piece of our local history.
Evie’s memories of Button Jewelers inset below:

As far as memories go…  My earliest memories are of putting together a rabbit puzzle in the giant playpen that mom had created for me out of the diamond cases.  She always arranged the cases in a way that would suit as a makeshift cage for me because I refused to be left with a babysitter.  I was well behaved, so I would sit in my playpen and do the same rabbit puzzle over and over all day long while she worked alongside me.  I didn’t like the puzzle much, but I thought the pink box it came in was exquisite.  I had other toys, obviously, but I spent most of my time with that puzzle. 

Once I started school, I was only down there on weekends, afternoons, or holidays.  I loved the holidays most because the store was always busy and everyone that came in seemed unusually happy.  At Christmas all the family members were there working, even the ones that were usually away at college.  We all got to wrap a lot of presents.  I was relegated to the bow making machine because making bows was considered a little kid’s job, but we all fast became excellent gift wrappers.  Aunt Gaye wasn’t having anything go out that was less than perfect.  She is a wonderful Aunt and I’m glad she taught us to be attentive to details.  That has served me well in life.

As I got older, I started working at the store, selling jewelry, engraving everything under the sun (a task I loathed–way too much pressure), cleaning (Lord, there was a lot of crystal to dust and silver to polish…), creating displays in the windows and throughout the store, and changing watch batteries and watch bands.  I preferred working in the repair department with my dad because it was tedious work that could be done in solitude – much the same as the rabbit puzzle from my early years.  Both Dad and I valued silence, so we worked well together. 

Lunchtime was also a family favorite.  Dad and I would get whatever sounded good that day, and we’d enjoy it in the repair department when business was slow.  The Destroyer from the old Sub Shop that used to be behind the Liberty theater…  What I wouldn’t give for another one of those!  When I moved back to town after having Little Peter, I started working at the store again, and the cycle repeated.  Only this time, during lunch, Dad would hold my little guy and feed him french dip sandwiches at the shipping counter.  Too many good memories to list…  Although I should mention the afternoon crossword puzzle we all worked on together once the paper had been delivered.  After that was complete, one of us was sent off to the ice cream shop down the block to bring back waffle cones for the crew.  Dad always had their licorice ice cream.  I alternated between that and blue bubblegum.  Delish!  In hindsight, we didn’t work all that hard.  Mom and I would go shopping downtown on our 15-minute breaks that more often than not lasted at least an hour.  We’d be shopping for decorations at Wood’s Hardware to use for the store windows etc., so was it really a break or was it work?  I learned how to justify things from my mom.  She was a riot, and confidently unapologetic.  Working with the family is where my best memories were created.  We were all so blessed to have the store and the opportunity to be together for so many years.
 
The downtown was so different back then and there’s a lot about it that I miss. The warm popcorn that Sprouse-Reitz always had at the front of their store. The chocolates and Coffee Nips that kept Ostrander’s high on my list of favorite places. Getting cheeseburgers, fries, and milkshakes at Carlisle’s, or a new pair of shoes at Mundy’s. Helping my dad freshen up his wardrobe with new clothes from Moser’s – a lot of dress shirts and ties, the occasional suit. Finding just the right top at JC Penney’s for a special date at The Liberty Theater. Ah… the 80s and 90s. Unforgettable.

In his Not So Nasty News (just prior) John explained we are reviewing a draft manuscript of 123 pages.
John read 50 pages of the manuscript the first evening we had it. By Sunday evening he has read the whole manuscript and is on his second time through with pencil. I have the digital version to use and need to get started.

Thursday, Nov 21

Our Kittitas Valley Fiddlers & Friends played music at Pacifica Senior Living. Players/singers were Manord, Kevin, Charlie, Nancy, Dean, Amy, Charlotte, Sharon, Minerva, Lou, & Sandy, and our mascot Haley (she’s in the 1st grade) was able to be there because it was a ½ day at school because of parent-teacher consultation day.After our music, Haley was showing her crocheting project to an appreciative resident.

Part of my emailing our group for planning chair count set up today included sending a photo of the card received from the Ellensburg Adult Activity Center thanking us for providing the music at the pre-Veterans’ Day celebration. The top part is the front and back of the card; the bottom is the inside of the card. This I preferred to passing the card around and also gave me the opportunity to email to everyone in the group.

After playing, I went by Burger King for supper to bring home, because we had to be back in Hal Holmes center by 6:30 to set up for the Kittitas Audubon monthly meeting were I was going to videotape my former student giving tonight’s lecture. Helen Lau is a Botanist with the USFS office in Cle Elum, WA and her specialty is Fungal Ecology. The lecture tonight was about Fungi.

Here was the write up in our monthly newsletter:
November Hooter of Kittitas Audubon

If you want to get to all the Hooters for this and previous years back to 2005, go here:
Kittitas Audubon Hooter: Current & Back Issues

From the Hooter: 7:00pm • November 21st • General Program

There’s a Fungus Among Us!

What lurks beneath us on earth’s carpet? Can I safely eat that? What purpose does that organism serve?
Helen Lau will introduce the audience to the secret life of fungi and discuss some of their ecological functions. She will share images of some of our most common local fungi and common edible fungi as well as their look-a-likes.
Helen Lau is a botanist for the USFS on the Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest. She manages the rare botanical species (plants, lichens, bryophytes and fungi), native plant restoration and invasive plant program on the Cle Elum Ranger District.

Helen’s research interests are in fungi biodiversity and she received an undergraduate degree at Evergreen State College and her master’s degree on mycorrhizae ecology in the Biological Sciences Department at Central Washington University.

Tonight’s presentation:
Top Setup of dried fungi, computer, and visiting with John; bottom are the audience observers of all the books, prints, and specimens Helen brought.

The main talk is the next link:

Helen Lau, USFS Botanist: Intro to Mushrooms & Fungal Ecology

Helen & Judy during Questions and Answers, see video below.

Questions and answers at the end

Friday, Nov 22

We checked in at Cle Elum for our wellness visit and Kaylene, our nurse, invited us back for height and weight measurements. First we had to remove our shoes. She measured Nancy’s height at 5’4”. Boy did that make me happy! It was less last year by an inch, and now I’m still shorter than before when I was almost 5’ 7”. Weighed in at 137.9#. Wellness agenda appointment includes blood pressure, SpO2, pulse (with an oximeter), giving memory tests and telling time on a clock with hands, the patient has to draw from scratch (to show 11:10). Go over medications list, need for prescriptions, and several other subjects.

That’s followed by a visit with our PCP, Chelsea Newman. She reviewed expected test we need to schedule (such as for me, a mammogram, a bone density test, the need for the new 2-shot Shingles vaccine, a review of the vaccines we have had (such as a Flu vaccine, and in my case the blood test for Potassium in January 2020. I just recently had blood draws and tests performed for a Nov 5 appointment with my cardiologist, so I do not need to schedule any blood draws, but John will have to make time to go by the hospital lab here for his tests (the paperwork for the orders has already been sent into the system).

I don’t remember the other things we discussed. Some have to wait for the Chronic appointment which we have in 2 weeks, because our follow-up was supposed to be on Friday after Thanksgiving, but the office will be closed then, so we were scheduled for the following week.

We stopped at Cle Elum Bakery for 2 Apple Fritters for me and a Bear Claw for John. I ate one on the way home, and he had ½ his bear claw. This picture was the next morning, when I had my 2nd. Their bakery goods are excellent, but very pricey. Each item bought was $2. For special occasions such as today, returning from a successful visit to the doctor for both of us, we splurged. Also, we had to be out so early for our appointment check in that there wasn’t time for fixing a good breakfast. This tided us over until getting home for lunch.

Top is from the carry-out bag; bottom my Apple Fritter

After a small brunch for me, I was off to the hospital for my Pulmonary Function Test (PFT) [showing improvement on all from last year’s]. I have already mentioned that previously in the blog, when my original appointment was canceled, and rescheduled for today. I have to have this PFT annually to be sure I’m okay and free of side effects (lung scarring) of the Amiodarone medication.

Our supper was beef stew, baked potato, sliced huge plum. The plum was purple on the outside with a no-color inside, and about the size of a baseball.

Saturday, Nov 23

John’s going to be driving the truck to town this morning to buy 4 more bags of Senior Equine for Myst, also Rolled Corn for her needs, and we are pleased she is gaining weight nicely no longer seeing any ribs. He also will be getting another bag of Black-oil sunflower seeds for the birds. While in town with the truck, he’ll fill the tank at a reduced price/gallon with rewards we have accumulated from Fred Meyer (we normally do not have enough purchases there to get fuel rewards, but for November, we currently have 200 points and we are entitled to 20₵/gal reduction, which translates today to $2.879/gal. He also went by the pharmacy to pick up my prescription for Amiodarone.

I called the Pharmacy and we’re on a waiting list for both John and me for the new double (better and more expensive!) Shingles shots [Shingrix] at Super 1. Chelsea recommended that yesterday for our attention. The double dose is given 2 months apart. Need to call Kaiser to see if it’s covered and what the copay is. We heard they are expensive; perhaps $300.

I cleaned and cut clusters of red grapes to take with Grandma rolls & Whole wheat rolls to an early Thanksgiving family dinner at our neighbors, the Swedbergs, scheduled for 1:00 p.m.

John’s out to feed Myst and do morning things and the temperature just went above freezing at 9:30 a.m. At least the sun is out and the skies are beautifully blue.

I talked to my neighbor and found out our early thanksgiving dinner is not beginning until 2:00 p.m. (actually 3) today. That will mean John will have to eat and not stay around visiting because of early darkness, and needing to feed Myst her evening special feed.

Our early thanksgiving dinner was an amazing array of food. We had smoked and non-smoked turkey, dressing, gravy, mashed and scalloped potatoes, salad with all sorts of things in it, two kinds of greens, cut apples, cherry tomatoes, pieces of yams, cranberries, sweet potatoes with marshmallows atop, sparkling wine, special orange juice, rolls, red grapes, olives, cherry pie & pumpkin pie, with kids, dogs, adults.

Sunday, Nov 24

I made an early morning call to my friend Janet Perkins in Winlock, WA to have her wish her hubby David a happy birthday.

John was busy today, getting ready for cold weather expected late this week. He cut a tree off one of the paths through our “swamp”, worked on the front gate, repackaged the horse feed into liftable portions and got it out of the truck. He will load horse poo to take to the vineyard now that the truck is empty. He finished with cutting most of the water diversion off. A few years ago he did not do this and a very cold spell prevented getting it closed. The neighbor’s driveway and ours, and parts of the pasture, flooded, froze and made life miserable. That same cold spell managed to freeze the frost-free faucet for the horse trough. [That’s now enclosed and covered with a heat tape.]

We had a late brunch: eggs, sausage links, home fries, and English Muffin toasting bread for me with Apricot jam.

I continued working on the blog and on emails, plus planning for the next two day’s work load. We decided against going to Costco tomorrow, putting it off until Tuesday because the weather will be warmer tomorrow with less of a chance of snow. We are not expecting snow here. It is just that Monday will be a better day to get a few more things done outside.

Dinner tonight was smoked turkey (from yesterday) – John had a leg and I had breast meat. With it we had butternut squash with marshmallows atop, broiled. Also had some commercial lasagna from the freezer.

Hope your week was fine.

Nancy and John
Still on the Naneum Fan

Not so Nasty News Nov 22nd

My bit is short this week. See Item #3.

Item #1: Again?
This must be the 4th or 5th odd wreck photo I used this year. There isn’t much special about this one, except I thought it funny that the business, a consignment furniture place, calls itself Once & Again. How many times do the police see these sorts of things? Do you suppose the 911 dispatcher and the police make jokes?

Item #2: Confused

The image at the right is an advertisement that appeared on my monitor this week. I usually ignore such things, but I looked at this one and wondered why I was getting it pushed at me.
I was confused by the text and the lady of the image.
The words “for the little ones” and the person did not seem to relate.
What are they selling, other than the dress?
She is likely a very nice lady – no disrespect intended – but she is not one of the little ones.
I did not click on the ad to find out more.

Item #3: Busy

I have been reading this week, but not searching for news.
One of our geography colleagues is working on a book about a 2nd colleague that has had an amazing life that went in odd directions. Prior to Nancy’s illness [that was 10 years ago] he wrecked on a bike, tore up the left side of his head, and rearranged some stuff in his brain that the best doctors in Seattle don’t understand. Then his 2nd wife, of 20 years, gave a 12 hour notice that she found someone else – and moved out. He has managed to get through the last 10 years with some help from a son from the first marriage.
So the book is his story as he tells it, in a “voice” or manner of a person with an odd early life and a scrambled period following a stint as a university professor. He is several years younger than me, and now has good physical health. So the story is not over.
The book is transcribed from interviews and Nancy and I are reading a draft.
So maybe next week I can find some more “Not So Nasty News.”

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

Pictures worth a 1000 words

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

AAC early Veterans’ Day Celebration photos

Monday, Nov 11 Happy Veterans’ Day

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Tuesday, Nov 12

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

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

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

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

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

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

Wednesday, Nov 13

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

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

Thursday, Nov 14

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

Friday, Nov 15

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

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

Saturday, Nov 16

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

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

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

Sunday, Nov 17

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

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

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

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

Hope your week was fine.

Nancy and John
Still on the Naneum Fan

Not so Nasty News Nov 15th

Item #1: Eggs

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

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

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

Item #2: Thrill

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

Item #3: Toasted toaster

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

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

Item #4: director of workplace morale

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

From Australia


Item #5: Travel by train

Dog story 2

The Dog Train Link

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

More dogs: Young pup talks to grumpy older dog.

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