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Thursday, October 27, 2011

Postcards, Weather, & Construction

Just a reminder:

If you'd like to join the Postcard Campaign and start receiving postcards in November, the deadline to sign up is October 31st - which is Monday. After that, you'll have to wait for December. And trust me, you don't want to wait.

The Postcard Campaign is simple - we take turns sending and receiving postcards so that we get a nice little something in the mailbox each month. Because I don't consider bills and junk mail to be nice little somethings. If your curious, please check out the Postcard Campaign page - link up top.

I hope everyone was able to receive their postcards from Mynx! I haven't seen too many posts about them, so hopefully the Postal Service didn't sweep them under a table.

I'm not sure about the rest of the planet, but it got freaking COLD here recently. It was 20 degrees yesterday morning. There was ice on the front steps to work. While I'm cool with the bundling up deal, it's like Mother Nature just decided for a few nights it would be in the 20s if we were lucky. And then to have it not get above 45 degrees just so we never quite get rid of the chill that's lingering in the air. Helloooooooooooooo hot chocolate. And the heater. And my blankets. And my electric blanket.

Have I forgotten anything? Oh yes, my fuzzy socks. My thermal undies and socks. My insulated ranch gloves. And scarves. And my slippers. Both pairs.

I heard from Mom the other day that the wall frames have been put up at their house (around my room and bathroom for the extension), and the trusses were delivered yesterday so the roof will start going up! I will be home this weekend and take pictures, plus I will post the pics Mom sent me from her cell phone. As long as the weather holds out (we're begging, Mother Nature . . . .), progress can continue!



Monday, October 24, 2011

Meet Captain Cute



Okay, so his name really isn't Captain Cute, but it definitely could be. His name wound up being Turbo, and quite often K and myself add something to it. So his name ends up being Turbo Squeak, Turbo Turd, Turbo Fart, Turbo (fill in the blank). You can see that we come up rude names for the poor kitten, however Turbo Squeak was the nicest. Yeah . . .

Anyway, here are a few more pictures of the little terror fur ball.




I figured if he could crap out, so could I! Unfortunately I wasn't really sleeping, but oh well. Him sleeping right under my chin made typing up stories for the publication a bit tough. But don't worry, I didn't get into trouble. After this, Papa D and I actually had a Solitaire war on each of our computers. Yep, that's how productive we were today.

And since I'm doing a easy post of pictures, here's another my cat, Harriet. Did you ever get that feeling that something is watching you?

Nope, not creepy at all. Creepy never entered my mind. Nor disturbing. Nope. Never. Not once.


Sunday, October 23, 2011

Blogger Scratch Off

I stole this Scratch Off thing from Hazel as an excuse for an easy post. Yep, I'm going the lazy route today. So sue me.  ;)

If you want to do this too then all you do is "scratch off" the things you've done/relevant to you etc.




Appearance

I have/had piercings besides the ears.

I want piercings besides the ears.

I have many scars.

I tan easily.

I wish my hair was a different color.

I have friends who have never seen my natural hair color.

I have a tattoo.

I want a tattoo.

I can be self-conscious about my appearance.

I have/had braces.

I have more than two piercings.




Embarrassment

Disney movies still make me cry.

I’ve laughed so hard I’ve cried.

I’ve glued my hand to something.

I’ve laughed until some kind of beverage came out of my nose.

I’ve touched something sharp/hot/etc to see if it would hurt.





Health

I’ve gotten stitches.

I’ve broken or dislocated a bone.

I’ve had my tonsils removed.

I’ve had my wisdom teeth removed.

I’ve had chicken pox.

I've had malaria.

I've had typhoid.

I've had jaundice.





Travel

I’ve been on a plane.

I’ve been to the US. (I'm cheating - I live in the US lol)

I’ve been to Europe.

I've been to at least one other country.

I've never been out of my country.

I’ve driven/ridden over 200 kilometers in one day.




Experiences

I’ve gotten lost in my city.

I’ve seen a shooting star.

I’ve wished on a shooting star.

I’ve seen a meteor shower.

I’ve gone out in public in my pajamas.

I’ve pushed all the buttons on an elevator.

I’ve slapped someone.

I’ve kissed someone underwater.

I’ve chugged something.

I’ve crashed a car. (okay, but it totally wasn't my fault - the cops said so!)

I’ve been skiing.

I’ve been in a musical.

I’ve auditioned for something.

I’ve been on stage.

I’ve caught a snowflake on my tongue.

I’ve sat on a rooftop at night.

I’ve pranked someone.

I’ve ridden in a taxi.





Honesty / Crime

I’ve been threatened to be arrested.

I’ve broken a law.

I’ve done something I promised someone I wouldn’t.

I’ve done something I promised myself I wouldn’t.

I’ve sneaked out.

I’ve lied about my whereabouts.

I’ve cheated while playing a game.

I’ve been in a fist fight.




Death

I’m afraid of dying.

I hate funerals.

I’ve seen someone/something die.

Someone close to me has attempted/committed suicide.

I have attempted suicide.

I’ve thought about suicide before.

I’ve written a eulogy for myself.





Materialism

I own over 10 music CDs.

I own over 10 novels.

I own over 5 electronic gadgets.

I’m obsessed with anime/manga.

I collected comic books.

I own a lot of makeup.

I own gaming console(s).

I own a car.

I own a bike.

I thrive on compliments.

I thrive on hate.
 

Random

I can sing low key.

I’ve stolen a tray from a fast food restaurant.

I open up to others easily.

I watch the news occasionally or always.

I like to kill bugs.

I sing in the shower.

I’m a morning person.

I’m a sports cricket fanatic.

I twirl my hair.

I care about grammar.

I love spam.

I’ve copied more than 30 CDs in a day.

I bake reasonably well.

My favorite color is either white, yellow, pink, blue, red, black, purple, or orange.

I would wear pajamas to school.

I like Martha Stewart.

I laugh at my own jokes.

I eat fast food weekly.

I’ve not turned anything in and still got an A in a certain class.

I can’t sleep if there’s a bug/insect in the room.

I’m really ticklish.

I like chocolate.

I bite my nails.

I’m good at remembering names.

I’m good at remembering dates.

My memory sucks.

I have no idea what I want to do for the rest of my life.





People

...used to ask if I was anorexic/bulimic.

...called me fat.

...say I’m skinny.

...have said I’m ugly.

...have said I’m pretty.

...have spread rumors about me.

...force me to eat.

...say I eat too much.

...say I eat too little.
...say I eat too fast.

...say I eat too slow.

...have called me a genius.

...have given me gifts.





Eating

I’ve lost weight.

I’ve gained weight.

I’m at my thinnest.

I’m at my biggest.

I’ve lost weight and kept it off.

I’ve lost weight, but gained it back.

My weight affects my mood.

I diet.

I’m vegan/vegetarian.

I exercise.

I’ve fainted from exhaustion.





Family

I’ve sworn at my parents.

I’ve planned to run away from home before.

I’ve run away from home.

I have a sibling less than one year old.

I want kids.

I’ve had kids.

I’ve lost a child.




Relationships

I’m engaged.

I’m married.

I’m a swinger.

I'm in a relationship.

I’ve gone on a blind date.

I have/had a friend with benefits.

I miss someone right now.

I have a fear of abandonment.

I don't like to depend on others.

I’ve gotten divorced.

I’ve had feelings for someone who didn’t have them back.

Someone has/had feelings for me when I didn’t have them back.

I’ve told someone I loved them when I didn’t.

I’ve told someone I didn’t love them when I did.

I’ve kept something from a past relationship.





Sexuality

I’m a cuddler.

I’ve been kissed in the rain.

I’ve hugged a stranger.

I’ve kissed a stranger.




Bad times

I regularly drink.

I can’t swallow pills.

I can swallow numerous pills at a time without difficulty.

I’ve been diagnosed with depression at some point.

I have anxiety problems.

I shut others out when I’m upset.

I don’t have anyone to talk to when I’m upset.

I have taken/take anti-depressants.

I’ve slept an entire day before.

I’ve plotted revenge.


So there you have my easy post. Feel free to steal it!

Happy Sunday!

Tuesday, October 18, 2011



I got me some mailbox happiness today! I received my postcard from Mynx over at Dribble....  I did a little happy dance in the Post Office. I believe my little Post Office happy dances are the reason why folks around town are suddenly looking at me funny. 


If you would like something other than junk and bills in your mailbox, shoot me an email with your name, address, and blog address. If you have no idea what I'm referring to, please click on the Postcard Campaign page link up top. If you send me an email before the 1st of November, you could get your very on postcard from the next blogger on the list in November and every month thereafter. So, what are you waiting for?

So, that means I get to announce the next blogger to send out postcards for November!

CWMartin over at Tilting at Windmills
(I will email you the addy's on the 1st)



So, really . . . whatchya waiting for? Shoot me an email and join us!




Monday, October 17, 2011

Award, Construction Update, and Doctor Down.

Before I go any further, I must thank my good bloggy friend Hazel over at Pablo's Angel for the award (of her very own) she dished out last week. She said many sweet things (and no I did not bribe her. Or blackmail her.).


And she had this to say:

J.Day/The Ramblings of Charlie Brown - "BraveHeart"

I called you this because you were brave enough to follow your heart and move to the back end of nowhere to work with your grandparents. I found this so inspiring! And I'm glad that it's worked out well for you as it's so nice to see you happy. You're also the brains behind the "Postcard Campaign" which is cheering up so many bloggers on dreary mornings with pretty postcards! Overall J.Day, you're very inspiring! Plus, I have fun saying J.Day over and over again too...


I have yet to understand why everyone I know loves to say my name over and over and over. People at my last job did that to me all the time. It drove me nuts. LOL Evidently my name is just fun and no one cares a snit about my poor sanity.  ;o)
 
Construction has officially begun at my parent's house! Hopefully the weather will hold out out so that there are no delays in getting everything completed. In case you're late to the party, my parents  are remodeling their house for my Granny who moved in officially a couple months ago, shortly after my Granddad's passing. She has taken my room and my bathroom and I am therefore relegated to sleep in the 5th wheel. My (old) bedroom is being remodeled into a suite where everything will be ADA compliant. They are taking one wall out 10 feet further and another wall 12 feet further. My parents had to cut down at least two trees in by the front porch and also tear out the front porch they had just put in last year. But here's how things are going so far:
 
This is the front of the house, in front of my room.



That little window is the window to my bathroom.



Back around to the front, the concrete is poured! My parents tell me it was pretty thick to match up with the house's original foundation.



And more concrete . . .


In other news, one of the vet's at the clinic I work for had a nasty accident while riding quads with some friends on vacation. He took a spill off an embankment of about 40 feet. It happened about a week and a half ago. He's pretty banged up, but he should recover well. He will, however, be out of work for a good couple months. He broke his collar bone and a shoulder blade. Last week one of the retired vets covered him over here in Sticksville. But now he's gone for about a month. I get the new vet for the next two weeks - should be interesting as I haven't work with her yet. I've met her, though. And the other retired vet is helping cover some stuff as well. It's another busy season as ranchers need their cattle preg checked, vaccinated, or need health certificates. And we're not talking just a few cows here and there. I'm talking herds of a few hundred head of cattle each.
 
Yeah. Fortunately most of our clients have been understanding about some schedule and/or doctor shuffling that's been required. And everyone wants to know how the guy is doing. I am, unfortunately, completely out of the loop as I'm only around other clinic employees two days a week.
 
I will do what I can to keep y'all posted.
 

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Two bits that I wrote for our publication

This post is something I wrote for my grandparents publication for October. I wrote a history piece on the community that my ancestors helped settle in the 1870's. I'm also including my column for October, which is a tie-in to the history story. I promised friends and family who read my blog but don't get to read the publication that I would post these stories on my blog for them to read. With it are pictures I took during my "tour" of the community and the museum in Fall River. Only 3 pictures were used in the article, as there isn't endless space, but here I can give you guys more pictures. I apologize for the lengthy post, but I hope you enjoy it. I certainly had fun with this!


The History of Day, CA

 
The small community of Day, also known as Little Hot Springs Valley, has a long and lively past. The ranching community is located in the extreme southwest corner of Modoc County, just 15 miles north of McArthur.



Day Road turns off Highway 299, five miles east of McArthur. During the ten mile drive, you will cross county lines twice. The junction of Day Road and Highway 299 is in Lassen County; as you travel along Day Road, you cross briefly into Shasta County and then shortly before Day, you cross into Modoc County.

Little Hot Springs Valley gets its name from a natural hot spring that rises on the northwest edge of the valley. The valley is surrounded by mountains on the north and east, and lava beds on the south and west.

There were many Indians residing in and around the valley who made their living by hunting and fishing, or even working for farmers and ranchers. Many of them lived around Big Lake, as it’s not too far from the valley.

There is a trail, known as Squaw Trail, which goes over the black lava from the lower end of the valley to Big Lake. The lava trail was worn smooth and, in some places shiny, by the footsteps of the Indians walking back and forth.

White settlers began homesteading ranches in the valley in the early 1870’s.

The town was named for the Day family, who moved into the area having traveled west from Maine.

Nathanial Thurston Day was born in 1806 in Maine. He later married Rhoby Green in 1839, and had five children. The family came across the plains by ox team, in 1861. He and his family homesteaded the land that now belongs to the Oilar family.

George Day, brother of Nathaniel Day; he never married. He came out west with Nathaniel.


Nathaniel Day and Moses McCarter were partners in two of the ranches above the Lorenzen place, near the hot springs. When the partnership dissolved a few years later, Day took the upper ranch and McCarter took the lower one, around the hot springs.

Day eventually sold his ranch to a Walter Weast, and it was sold again to a Clifford Oilar. The Oilars still own the property.

Another one of the early homesteaders was Pete Lorenzen. He came to the United States from Denmark at age 17. In the 1870s, he settled in Little Hot Springs Valley, having purchased land from Bill and John Payne. The ranch has been in the Lorenzen family ever since.

Jacob Seiger, an immigrant from Germany at age 15, was another settler. To pay for his passage across the plains, he drove ox teams. He eventually settled in Little Hot Springs Valley, living there until he died. His homestead is now owned by the Oilar family.

The original Oilar ranch was purchased by Hugh Oilar from Calvin Hall. Hall was an army man from Fort Crook. Five members of Hall’s gang were lynched from the Lookout Bridge in 1901.

At one time, Little Hot Springs had its own paper, called Four Corners, and was published by Mr. Stanley. The paper was established for the purpose of printing homestead grants and timber claims. There were many people coming from the Bay Area to claim timber. It also reported the goings on for the week.

In the early days of this small community, daily mail and passenger stages traveled through from Yreka to Alturas. The Pete Lorenzen’s home was a stopping place for drivers and their horses. Unfortunately for the Little Hot Springs, this route wasn’t used very long, as a better route was soon made.

The door to the left is the Post Office. The larger part is thought to have been a blacksmith shop.


Little Hot Spring’s first post office was established in 1888 by Pete Lorenzen, and the community took the name of Day. The mail was carried twice weekly on Tuesdays and Saturdays from the Juniper post office. When the toll road was no longer in use, the Juniper post office was closed and the mail was routed through Pittville. The Day post office operated until 1925. It was opened again in 1926 and closed for good in 1953. Route service is now used. The original building is still standing.


The Post Office was established in 1888.


A few of the original buildings are still standing, as well. The old barn that was built around 1890 of hand-hewn timbers by Nathaniel Day’s son, Samuel, has finally started collapsing.

It’s unclear when the first school was built. A newer school house was built on the Oilar ranch in the late 1920s. The first teacher was Anna McArthur.

The barn built by Samuel Day (Nathaniel's son) circa 1890.


Mr. and Mrs. Samuel Day. Owned the ranch in Day until 1910, then moved to Fall River Valley.


There are tales of summer Saturday evenings, gathering at one of the ranches to have a dancing and feasting. Sunday afternoons were for picnicking, often times using the ice caves eight miles northwest, to freeze the ice cream.
 
For winter fun there was always sledding and ice skating.

There has never been a church in the community of Day, and in the old days, church was often too far away. Many families would take time on Sundays to read passages from the Bible to their children. Once in a while, a traveling minister would stop and preach for a week or so at a time. Those meetings were held in the school house.

This valley is also home to what has become known as the Day Lights. Little Hot Springs Valley seems to be haunted by a mysterious light – seen by both Indians and the white settlers. The Indians have always been reluctant to discuss these lights, when it appeared it seemed that a death in their tribe would soon follow.

One of the local tales is that Walter Lorenzen was keeping watch over his sheep with his dog, as coyotes had been a recent problem. One night, he noticed a light heading his direction from across the field. At first he thought it was someone carrying a very bright lantern. The light hopped over a fence, went around the sheep’s enclosure, and passed near enough to Walt that he could see that there wasn’t a person associated with the light. Even his dog was scared to the point where it couldn’t growl or bark. Walt packed up his belongings and quickly headed home.

Commercial power did not come to Day until 1966, when Surprise Valley Electric Cooperative completed its power lines across Big Valley Mountain.

There is a small cemetery in Day, well hidden. The last burial to take place in the cemetery was in 1933. A spring of water came up nearby and created quite a bit of surface water, making it impossible to continue using the cemetery.


The forgotten cemetery.

A fire in the spring of 1951 destroyed the wooden fence around the cemetery. It also destroyed most grave markers, as several were made of wood. In 1965, the community raised enough money to pay for a new cyclone fence, which was put up by the Schneider family. During that time, the cemetery was cleaned up. It has not been touched since.


Child's grave with name of Schneider 1880-1888. Believed to have died from diphtheria outbreak.

This quaint community has not changed all that much. It is still a small but proud ranching community. It’s far enough off the main road to keep its rural charm.

Only four of the original names left in the valley: Oilar, Schneider, Gooch, and Lorenzen.





City Girl Goes Country

“In every conceivable manner, the family is link to our past, bridge to our future.” Alex Haley.

For the past ten or more years, I have dabbled in genealogy. I find it absolutely fascinating to discover where my ancestors came from and who they were. This month’s column is kind of a tie-in to the history of Day, the history of my family.

I am no expert, by any means. Whenever I have the time or a bee in my bonnet, I pour over the papers given to me by my grandmothers and find new links and information on Ancestry.com.

Family has always been very important in my life. It’s simply how I was raised. Do we always like each other? Nope. Do we love each other? You bet. And that it what is important.

As my grandfather has recently stated, I have come back to my roots – Modoc County. My great-great-great grandparents settled the small community of Day, or Little Hot Springs Valley as it’s also known. His homestead was eventually sold, and now the surname of Day does not live in the community of the same name.

I recently visited this small community, for the first time in my 31 years. I’ve passed it hundreds of times, always telling myself, “I should really go there someday.” But I never did. I always had an excuse to not stop by.

I saw the original barn, built in 1890 by my great-great grandfather. I barely saw the original post office, on my way out of town. While there really is nothing in Day except for ranches and homes, I was still in awe that my family helped to settle that small but beautiful valley.

I found the forgotten cemetery, hidden behind trees off a dirt road. No signs marked its location. Only three headstones were left, as a fire 60 years ago had destroyed all the wooden markers. It was completely overgrown. I’m pretty sure my family who settled there are buried somewhere in there. It saddens me to see it in such a sad state.

In my ancestral search, I learned that my Granddad, the late Cecil “Tuffy” Day, barely knew his parents. They had both passed away by the time he was 10 years old, had been raised by his older siblings.

In truth, his parents are pretty much the only great-grandparents I didn’t know at some point in my life. I was blessed with knowing most my great-grandparents, my last living biological great-grandmother passed away in 2006.

I learned that my paternal great-grandmother’s family has owned the Hiway Garage in McArthur.

My dad’s parents also ran a Foremost Milk distributorship in Beiber, and later in Burney.

My grandfather, Papa D, has worked in the newspaper industry since shortly after he graduated high school. He owned the Inter-Mountain News for awhile, moving it from Fall River Mills to Burney.

On my mother’s side, our ancestors hailed from England and Ireland. While I haven’t been able to find much on the Irish side, the English have been pretty well documented. My maternal 11th great-grandmother – one of her brothers was great-grandfather to John Adams, signer of the Declaration of Independence and second U.S. President.

The least fun part of searching your genealogy is foraging through all the information out there. Names are spelled differently throughout the ages, or misspellings can often lead to name “changes”.

The fun part is making connections and getting answers. The really fun part is finding connections to famous people. I have found connections to a few signers of the Declaration of Independence, presidents, authors such as Jane Austen and Laura Ingalls Wilder, Samuel Morse (Morse Code), architect Frank Lloyd Wright, aviator Emelia Earhart, outlaw “Wild Bill” Hickock, and circus performer Charles Stratton (aka “Gen. Tom Thumb”, which I’m now pretty sure is where mine and my dad’s thumbs come in). Does it matter that some of these folks are 15th cousin 10 times removed? Nope, because it’s cool just to have a link.

If you haven’t started yet, it’s never too late. Start with yourself and your immediate family, and grandparents. Chase your own tale by becoming a genealogist.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Awards Galore!

In the past week  Um, yeah, it's been much longer than a week. I apologize to the two bloggers have passed on awards to me, as I haven't had the time to post regularly in the past two or three weeks. So now I'm going to attempt these with their random facts and whatnot.

First up is the super-wonderful Frisky Virgin. I believe the only posts I don't really read are the ones about True Blood because it's a vampire thing and I don't do vampires. But I won't hold the fact that she likes vampires against her - everyone has to make their own mistakes. (wink wink) In truth, I love her blog as she makes me laugh out loud at the hilarious stories and anecdotes about her life. Her blog is a must-read.




The rules for these are to thank the blogger who gave it to you (see above) and reveal 7 random facts about yourself.

Okay, here goes.

1. The one thing I miss about living in the city is Target. I don't necessarily need to buy anything, but it can be fun to wander the store and make fun of items or think how great something else would be in your home, if only you had the space for it.

2. Surprisingly, what I don't miss about city living is all the fast food. The thought of McDonald's is no longer appealing.

3. I can't stand coffee, in any form. Walking into a Starbucks is like an assault on my poor innocent nostrils. The only thing I am willing to drink from there is hot chocolate.

4. There is a town in my county named after my family, who helped settle it in the late 1800s. I wrote up a history of the community for Papa D's paper, and it will be printed in the October issue. Once it's officially printed next week, I will post my article here on my blog.

5. I have this horrible habit of taking forever to get out of the house in the morning for any of my jobs. There are mornings I have to go from inside of car back inside the house 5 times to get something I forgot, then get to work at the vet's and realize I still forgot something. It's really sad. And exhausting.

6. I once took a spoonful of sugar to get rid of hiccups. My (good) college roommate said that's how she got rid of her hiccups. Normally I just drink 10 sips of water, and I can get them to go away. That time they didn't. I finally agreed to the spoonful of sugar, and it's disgusting. I gagged it down thinking she's totally messing with me. It totally worked. However, I keep it as a last resort.

7. My work station has to be kept clean. I can't stand a cluttered work area. My home, however, is not kept to the same standards. While I keep it picked up and clean it, I have far too much crap. But I'm totally anal-retentive about a work station. And that was why I hated rotating benches throughout the night at my old lab job - too many hands touching any given work station so I couldn't keep it set up how I liked it. If I'm working at a certain bench, you bet your sweet little tushy it will be set up my way.

OMG, that took forever. I'm not sure why, but it's so hard for me to come up with random facts. Sheesh.

The other award I received came from chocolateangel over at The Cat and the Coffee Cup. She is obviously a cat lover, and writes about her adorable kitties as well as her every day life - the good and the bad. Plus she has cute kitty pictures that will cheer you up on her blog.



I seriously hope that I can find everything that fits with the criteria for this award! Evidently I'm supposed to troll through my blogger stats to find my series of "most" posts. This could get interesting.

"Most Beautiful": My Granddad -  My post telling all of you about the wonderful, courageous man that was my Granddad, who passed away just four months ago.

"Most Helpful": It's Official - I'm Crazy! - It was very hard to admit how unhappy I was, living in Sacramento. But it was also very therapeutic getting it out there. Thank you all for "listening" to me and being supportive of my crazy decision!

"Most Controversial": It's Debatable - I got my very first (and only) Anonymous comment.

"Most Popular": For the life of me, I cannot understand why, according to blogger stats, this is my most viewed post. It was a "half-ass" post . . . Another Weekend, Another Half-Assed Post.

"Most Underrated": The first several posts regarding my old psycho college roommate, the Psycho Suzi series.

"Most Surprisingly Successful": The Postcard Campaign - I'm so happy and shocked that there are quite a few people participating!

"Most Pride-worthy": Where I explain my nickname, and the title of my blog.

Okay, seriously, this took FOREVER.

And I'm not going to sit here and agonize over who gets these awards. Seriously, because it is agonizing trying to choose. So, if you follow my blog and have a blog of your own, then these awards are for each and everyone of you! Take them and run away with them!

Next post will be the published story in our publication about the town my ancestors helped settle!

Sunday, October 9, 2011

I'm back and it's all about Mr. Columbus

Well, I use the term normal loosely.

Anyhoo, my sheep-sitting is done. I survived, and so did the sheep. I will tell y'all more later. I have so much to catch up on. Yikes!

I've missed being able to read your blogs on a semi-regular basis - I've felt so out of the loop recently. Plus, I've missed blogging.

But I'm pulling the old lady card and going to bed early. It's like 9pm. But I'm tired and it's dark out (the latter being most important). Not to mention I'm cold and the electric blanky on my bed is on, making my bed seem like the logical place to be at the moment. My monumental yawns are also giving me a sign: go to bed, doofus.

Oh, tomorrow (Monday), here in the USA it's Columbus Day. Where we celebrate a man who found land that wasn't supposed to be there (according to him). The man, while on a mission to prove the earth was round, not flat, believed he could sail west to the East Indies completely undisturbed by land. Yeah, that didn't happen. Instead he stuck a flag in the ground of the places he landed, claiming said lands for Spain. Never mind that people already lived there.


This man is just another example of how 1. men refuse to stop and ask for directions, and 2. men despise being wrong. Mr. Columbus believed the lands he found to be a part of Asia. He refused to believe anything other than that, and it is believed that the Americas got there name from someone else entirely. Columbus just gets the holiday. Columbus never set foot on the actual land that would one day be the USA, but discovered Central and South America. But because of him, every other European nation wanted to see what else they could lay claim to - again, never minding that people already lived there.

You have to wonder: What if Columbus and his first three ships sank, therefore never returning to Spain and making several more voyages? Would they all have just assumed the world really was flat? Nah. They probably would have found some other sucker.

Happy Monday! (And Columbus Day!)


Tuesday, October 4, 2011

My Weekend In A Nutshell

Okay, I know I've been totally slacking off on this whole blogging thing. I swear I want to. Blog, not slack that is. I've just been busy.

As I mentioned in my last post, sometime last week, I was house-sitting for a neighbor of my grandparents. For simplicity's sake, I will call them The H's. Anyhoo, I went out to sheep-sit for a couple nights. Yes, you read that right. I wasn't really doing much actual "house" sitting. I was there for the sheep.

I went out there Wednesday night, just before sundown. The sheep are trained to come up to their pens at night. I got them all locked up, fed the dogs, and the barn  kitties. The H's have a couple guest houses, and I was staying in one of them. I had brought myself  a little dessert (popcorn and M&M's, can't go wrong with that), and a book. I was hoping I'd sleep well since it was a new place - wholly unfamiliar to me. I'm not used to sounds of sheep bleating or their stupid bells on their necks ringing all night. But I did okay.

Until 3 a.m. rolled around. The dogs were barking like crazy. I realized that they weren't barking where the sheep were, so that meant the sheep probably weren't in any real danger. That and the sheep weren't making any more noise (nor any less), and the horses were completely silent. I grabbed a flashlight and stepped outside and couldn't find anything. I called the dogs, Lilly & Buzzy, and they were right there in seconds. I did another sweep with the flashlight, but couldn't find anything. I was hoping it was like a raccoon or a skunk. Meaning they aren't life-threatening to sheep.

I crawled back into bed, and about 15 minutes later the dogs went nuts again. This time closer to the sheep. Arrrgh!

I put my shoes on, grabbed a flashlight and my sweater, and took a walk to the sheep. Nothing seemed out of the ordinary, so I told the dogs to lay down and crawled back into bed. And slept until morning. Well, I mean, a couple more hours. When my alarm woke me up, I went out to let the sheep out. I had one of the dogs with me, and good thing, too. On my way to the other gate to let them out into the field, one little guy came running up to me. This one had horns. It stopped about two feet from me and just stared. It had an odd glint in it's eye. I don't trust sheep (or goats). I called Lilly over and she came up to me and the sheep took off. Nice to know they are more scared of a dog than me.

The next morning I was at work at the Sticksville clinic, and then spent the afternoon delivering papers in Town with Papa D. I went back out to The H's ranch to lock up the sheep and feed the little critters again. I took the dogs to herd the last of the sheep through the gate. Back in the guest house, I slept pretty good. A little cooler than the night before, but the dogs were silent.

Friday, Papa D and I delivered papers as far down as Burney and back. By the time I got home, my mom was at my place. I took her out to dinner. One of the cafe's in town does Mexican food every Friday, and boy is it good stuff. YUM! Saturday I was at work in Town at the clinic. Guess it was my lucky day. We had a huge windstorm Friday night. That lovely storm brought down a large limb or a tree down on a fence line near where my grandparents property and The H's property meet. My mom sends me texts saying she's not dressed for ranch work, but still went out in her sandals to help out. Eventually I get one that says, "Cow shit feels great between your toes!" (in case anyone was curious, she was being sarcastic). Apparently one cow got in that one field, and left it's mark. And my mother found it. A few times.

Sunday morning my mom and I got up, got my car loaded with papers, and had breakfast at a cafe in Sticksville. Then she followed me home and stopped when I stopped. Even helped me carry bundles in. Once in Redding, we drove directly to the rehab place my Granny is in. I'm not sure I've even updated everyone on that. Granny had surgery last Monday to take out a defective knee replacement. She's now in rehab so they can get her back home in a couple weeks. The doctors are pumping her full of antibiotics to kill of an infection in the bad knee joint. So hopefully in a couple months, she have her knee replacement replaced. We met my dad there and visited with them for a bit. Then I left to finish delivering in Redding and spent about 3 hours with my mom's parents, Nana & Sonny. We had a good visit, and a few good laughs. Then I ran out to grab a burger and went back to rehab to have dinner with Granny. She'd already been served her food and had what she thought was turkey soup.

Monday I ran my errands in the morning, had lunch with my parents and then took off to finish delivering. I got stuck in construction about three times, which didn't please me. Or my bladder. Traffic in Redding and Red Bluff was pure hell. I wound up getting home around 7:30 last night, which is kinda late.

And thus begins another hectic week. I'll be sheep-sitting again this week while The H's run off to a conference for a couple days. Plus my regular stuff on the ranch, the publication, and the clinic.

Nope. Not busy at all. Not me. Never.

I will be posting a story I wrote for the publication on the town my ancestors helped settle in the late 1800's, in this same county. I wanted to wait for it to be officially published. Now it is, but it would make this post far too long. Along with it, my column for this month, which is a tie in. I also still have the long post about awards, which I need to get out. If I don't get them out this week, it'll be next week!