Monday, December 31, 2012

Hacienda in the Snow

Here it is...New Year's Eve....and it's snowed (lightly) all day.  Not that I was planning on going anywhere.  I gave that up years ago.  It's nearing dark but it looks like the snow has pretty much stopped for us, so I went out to take a few pictures.   Here's the hacienda (and the woods out back) in what little snow we've had.



I know it's not much snow....but we've had so little moisture the past couple of years, we're just happy to get ANYTHING!  BTW...if you click on that third photo, you can see my guy in the woods...big like a tree, dumb like a board as my sis would say.   Have a happy new year....and stay safe!!!  Count your blessings!

Monday, December 24, 2012

Christmas Eve...and Waiting........

Well...it's nearly time.  That jolly old fat man should be on his way.  Here I sit, eating fudge (and then I eat Ritz crackers to counteract the icky feeling from eating too much fudge)...and waiting...and waiting...and waiting.

I'm only writing this because I thought it was only fair to forewarn the world...should that jolly old fat guy show up here and happen to be that Santa guy on the Chevy commercials....well, he's gonna be runnin' a little late for the rest of the world.  WOOF!

Ok...well...back to waiting and watching.....  Merry Christmas to all and to all a good night!

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Almost Christmas.....

Well...here it is...almost Christmas!  Hard to believe...and even somewhat hard to act like it's Christmas.  I'm curious about how people in warm climates "do" Christmas.  Most of our days have been in the 50's and 60's...that's not Christmas weather.  We're supposed to be cold and snowy by now!!!

Actually, we did get about an inch of snow this past Wednesday/Thursday. I went to Joplin to visit my sister on Wednesday and the roads were clear.  I came back on Thursday and there was a little snow here and there.  Between Potwin and Burrton there were beautiful big drifts in the ditches.  The old crops could still be seen with snow settled in the rows, but the wind had made huge drifts in the ditches.  I heard later that Newton (right in between Potwin and Burrton) had had 2" of snow...Hutchinson only had 1".   Hutchinson had 1" of snow...and about 6" of salt!  My car (black) was dirty from the trip...very dirty...so I went and washed it.  Tried to get home from the car wash place without getting dirty.  HA!!!  Wound up wiping it down again with wet towel and Windex and it now looks pretty smeared...and that's inside the garage.  Bet it'll be a mess when the sunshine hits it!  Hutchinson is well known for it's salt mines...and believe me, we SALT the streets!

Today is supposed to be back up in the 50's and then turn cold, so I really should try to get in another bicycle ride before year end.  I'm at 4,218 miles for 2012.  My friend/co-rider has nearly 7,000 miles!!!  I was so pleased with my total (the most I've done in several years)...but WOW!!!  Carol has truly "gone the extra mile."  She does things like heads to Partridge for coffee...then decides maybe Arlington for lunch instead!  That's about a 60-70 mile ride from her house.  Back in the old days we did that...but I haven't done it for a long time.  I admire her for her endurance!

I hope each of you have a great Christmas!  May all your Christmas wishes come true.  And God willing, I'll see you all after the holidays!  Count your blessings...say your prayers...and be a good little boy or girl.  Santa Claus is coming to town!

Monday, November 26, 2012

Gimme the beat, boys!

This just says it all!!!!!

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Long Time, No Write...huh?

It's been so long since I've posted to my blog that I nearly had forgotten my password.  But, lucky you...I remembered it!

'Tis the season for lots of craft sales for me...as a vendor...and December 8, as the promoter of my own show.  This will be the 4th year.  Years 1 and 2 were held in my home;  year 3 was at the Boy and Girl Scout buildings on the fairgrounds (3,000 sq. ft in 2 buildings - and we were practically stacked on top of each other); and now year 4: the Encampment building at the fairgrounds.  We'll have 6,400 sq. ft...and just for what it's worth:  I have a waiting list of over 20 people and tried to rent the other half of the building a few weeks back.  Couldn't get it as it's going to be used for the police department's Christmas party that evening.  So...we're still limited this year...but at least the vendors I do have lined up will have plenty of space.  And next year - second Saturday in December (Dec. 14, 2013) - I have already reserved the Domestic Arts building...that's 13,000 sq. ft.  I truly love doing this...both getting the show together, etc., as well as participating as a vendor.

My "real" work was as an accounting manager for a small (65-70 employees) company here in Hutchinson.  I liked it a lot...but I never really had to interact with the public very much.  For the most part, I really do enjoy that part of the craft market.  Once in a while one get's somebody that's a major pain (first name Martha!!!)...I had one last week end.   Not going to go into it here, but afterwards while I was feeling rather guilty and like an outcast, several people came to me and said they were behind me all the way.  I lost a $77 sale....but it was worth it to let the bitch know I was on to her!   Oh well....life goes on. 

Two more shows this year.  One at Lyons on December 1 and my own on the fairgrounds on December 8.  So far this year they've all been very good shows for me.

I've kind of quit blogging for awhile because I figured everyone is sick of hearing the same stuff over and over....but guess what!  Here it is again!!!

Still biking nearly daily.  Weather has been incredibly beautiful here for this time of year.  Upper 60's the past few days.  Today was a little windy and everyone had "stuff to do for Thanksgiving" so we didn't ride today.  But..so far this year...I have 4,084 miles!   I really considered getting out today and just cranking around the neighborhood 'til I rolled up 16 miles to get that 4,100...but I didn't.

Tomorrow (Thanksgiving) I'm going to go out for dinner with one of my ex-neighbors.  She came by the craft show I was at last weekend and asked what I was doing, and we decided to go out to eat.  Started out we were going to each cook....then decided how much easier just going out would be!  'Course, that means no leftover turkey.  I may still wind up buying a small turkey just so I can have turkey sandwiches.  And I have everything to make cranberry relish to put on a sandwich.  And I have everything to make a pumpkin log cake.  And I have everything to make Snicker bar cookies.   Here's a puzzle for ya:  what's missing????  Oh yeah....veggies!  Once again!  Some things never change.  Maybe I'll eat A veggie tomorrow...it won't be green beans - they're a waste of time in my opinion.  I don't dislike them...they're just a zero.  I like corn and peas and cauliflower and broccoli and even brussel sprouts...but not green beans....and NOT turnips!!!  Turnips are NOT a zero...they're a negative 100!!!  As are their red (sometimes white) cousins: radishes.  Yuck.   When I was a kid (been a while) everyone knew there were 3 foods I simply could not even be forced to eat:  Turnips, tapioca pudding, and warm cereal  (my mom was big on cornmeal mush...and if it didn't get eaten for breakfast, she put it in a can, cooled it, then sliced it and fried it in bacon grease for supper!  OMG!!!!)

With that happy thought (gag), I'm going to wrap this up.  Here's wishing each of you a wonderful Thanksgiving.  Please be sure to count your blessings!   I guarantee I do count mine OFTEN!!!  They're many.   In fact, here's a recent Hobby Lobby purchase of mine. I say it all the time and when I saw the metal piece I knew I had to have it.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Lookin' Out the Back Door



Should've taken "before" photos...but didn't.  Just overnight the trees have started dropping their leaves like crazy.  Fall has fell!  They're coming down like big yellow snowflakes. (These pictures were taken about noon today...and we've had some pretty good wind all day - 25-35 mph with gusts to 40 is what Channel 22 was reporting - so I'm betting the leaves are considerably deeper now.)  The weird brown box on the right edge of the second photo is the corner of my neighbor's house.  That wall is actually straight up and down...the photo's crooked...new camera, ya know.  (We all have weird brown boxes that we live in....AND I LOVE IT!!!)  There were two bright red maples in the easement out front...but they're now just sticks, no leaves.

It's been really pretty here.  I hadn't ridden for a couple of weeks because I was babying an eye issue..but last Sunday Carol and I rode to Nickerson (32 miles) and Monday Carol, Mary, and I rode to Partridge (43.84 miles!!!)   So pretty much Monday was kind of "lost" after that.  Had a shower, had some soup, that about covers it.  I hadn't ridden much in the past two weeks and it pretty much used me up.  Sure felt great at the time though.

We didn't get in a ride yesterday as I had an eye appointment (and got a good report on healing.)  Carol and I had planned to ride this morning and a big dark cloud was looming overhead, so we didn't.  By the time the clouds passed (and a tiny dribble of rain), the wind was up.  Tomorrow maybe.

Friday, October 12, 2012

More about "The Dog"

I've said it more than once...even more than twice:  She's gotta be part cat!!!



I said, "There goes the trash truck..." and this is where she decided was ok to go to see out.  And then she stayed there for awhile.  Goofy, huh?  No...that's Schiz...also apropos.

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Update on Schiz face!

Becky sent me this photo which she based the painting on...even better, huh???!!!!

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Cousins Visit


My cousins, Shon and Becky (sisters) came to visit today.  One from near Manhattan, the other from near Topeka.  Both are extremely artistic and talented.  They brought me a house-warming/birthday gift...one, a bottle of chocolate wine that looks and sounds delicious...and two:
Becky  hand-painted this picture of Schiz!!!  And she NAILED it!!!  Here's a shot of Schiz with a little longer hair about a year and a half ago
Isn't this just great??  I love it!!!  Thank you!

After lunch at the Anchor Inn, a stop at the DQ for sundaes, and a great visit with lots of laughs and memories, they had to head back home.  I could spend a lot more time with them...we never run out of topics to discuss!!!
Count your blessings....you'll be amazed!

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Mission Desk

Ok...here's my latest project:  sorry if the picture is small...it's the best I can do!  Now...just so ya know...I ordered this and received it back in July.  Since then I've moved and am beginning to get settled so today I decided to open the box.  When one orders something like this and it arrives in a 90 lb. box that's not over 6 inches thick, one should probably have a clue.  Well...actually...I did...even before I ordered it!  There are 162 pieces of hardware and 37 pieces of wood...all "to be assembled."  Nothing is together.  Currently it resides in/on the dining room table...and all around the dining room walls.  Tomorrow's another day!

I'm beginning to get fairly well settled in my new home.  And...I love it!  For the past three days I've been cleaning windows (inside and out) and wooden venetian blinds.  Lots of them!  8 windows in living room, 7 in master bedroom, 1 big wide double window in dining room and 1 in kitchen.  All that's left is the guest room...and it'll just have to wait.

Well...it's now 24 hours (or more) since those first two paragraphs were written...and my how stuff changes!
My camera decided not to work...wasn't batteries...finally got it to turn on...took pix...thought I was downloading them...but now can't find them. Got message "no new photos"...and my sweet disposition thought:  Oh my...maybe I need a new camera.  SO.....I went to Wally world and bought a new camera.  Not a real high dollar fancy job...that would be a waste for me...but a nice little Nikon.  SKINNY!!!!!  I'm still learning but I think I like it.  So..now I'll try to add some photos to this post:



Photos1 - 2 - 3 above..add about 4 hours time...and you get photo 4!!  Wasn't too tough at all...once I figured out that #6 screws are not #9 screws.  Kept thinking "well...these aren't gonna be big enough to support this...", then figured out I was using the wrong hardware!  DUH!
 
 These are living room windows...now clean inside and out and wooden blinds wiped down individually with a damp rag...sorry, but Swiffer just doesn't do it for me.

And hidden behind these drapes are three more just like the living room windows...these are in the master bedroom however.

And this one is in the dining room...and there's another one in the kitchen (and two more in the guest bedroom..but they aren't done yet!)  Remember "back in the old days"...ever go to the library and look something up on a fish (fiche???)...and after awhile you feel like you're going to tip over and fall off the chair?  Well...cleaning blinds does that too!!!

And the latest news of the day:  someone (much nicer term than I've been using) hit my mailbox and polycarts in town at "my other house"...the one that is sold and we close on Monday.  WHY couldn't they have waited one more week?  Anyway..no great damage other than I need to get a new mailbox post and mailbox put up for the new owner.  Tomorrow.... already got the handyman lined up.

If I'm not drunk Monday evening I'll not know why!  This has been the most frustrating house sale I've ever been involved with...and I've been in a few.  More on that MAYBE after I have her money in my hands!  Ok...one short story....long small window beside front door...frosted design but one can still see through it...I'd had plain white contact paper on it, but had removed it when I put the house up for sale.  I mentioned that to the buyer at the time of inspection (as she'd commented that she'd need some covering on that window)... So....she called me...asked if I still had that contact paper!  HUH?  Yeah...sure...No, I threw it away.  Then she wanted to know if I had anymore and I told her no....and the beat goes on!  See, I told ya so!  Come on, Monday!!!!!

Count your blessings.... I do.  Oh yeah...been a little rainy or rainy-ish here...haven't ridden much in the past few days...but I have about 3600 miles for the year so far!  And I've lost a few pounds too..and with my diet that IS amazing!!!  Micky D's   3/$1 chocolate chip cookies...VERY familiar with those!

Friday, September 14, 2012

An Update of Sorts...Kinda ...

Much, much, much has happened in my life in the past six weeks or so...but honestly, not much I care to post here.

Mainly I've bought a different house.  I've moved.  I've sold the other house.  I'm still riding quite a few miles every day...usually between 32 and 42 per day.  I've been so busy I can't even tell you what my total for the year is right now.  I've kept it...it's on another computer...and it's just not currently handy.  But we ride nearly daily and usually about the same number of miles.

On one of our rides we discovered (well...I'm sure it wasn't undiscovered or lost..it was simply the first we all knew about it) an incredible, beautiful garden.  HUGE!!!  I assume that's somewhat what a commercial garden looks like.  The Amish lady that was out in the garden told us they have seven children and they all help.  We were on bicycles that particular day so we didn't buy anything, but a few days later the three of us took a car and bought some fresh veggies.  Yummy!!!!   They have simply everything and it's an extraordinarily well groomed garden.

Yesterday we had rain.  You know, that stuff that falls from the sky and it's wet.  Well, we actually had a great rain all day long.  Evidently it seemed a lot nicer that what it actually was, as the weatherman said we had some small amount (like .34 inch)...and it seemed like we surely had at least an inch!  We need rain so badly that we're excited to get ANY!  At my new place I'm told I should expect to see deer and turkeys on a regular basis.  Yesterday turkeys were in the neighbor's yard and they were soaked....still struttin' their stuff, but black and slick with rain.  I have a wooded area behind my house that I lovingly refer to as "my woods."   I keep peeking out the windows at dawn and dusk hoping to see a deer, but not yet.

Some of you will remember that I had a bit of a conflict over a different place that I'd tried to buy and the dingbat that was selling it changed her mind.  Long story...not here.  I can only say that someone was watching over me...I love this new place.  It's unique and I think just gorgeous.  A good friend of mine came out and kept saying over and over again, "Wow."....."Wow."   Later she called and said she had come up with the perfect expression to describe my place:  "Wow."     I feel the same way.  Neatest place I've had yet!

Life is good and I'm always happy to count my blessings...they're many!!!  Count yours too.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Friendships

One of the women I ride with every day sent this to me...it struck home!

They Teach It at Stanford 

In an evening class at Stanford the last lecture was on the mind-body

connection - the relationship between stress and disease. The speaker (head of

psychiatry at Stanford) said, among other things, that one of the best things

that a man could do for his health is to be married to a woman whereas for a

woman, one of the best things she could do for her health was to nurture her

relationships with her girlfriends. At first everyone laughed, but he was

serious.

Women connect with each other differently and provide support systems that

help each other to deal with stress and difficult life experiences.

Physically this quality “girlfriend time" helps us to create more serotonin -

a neurotransmitter that helps combat depression and can create a general feeling

of well being. Women share feelings whereas men often form relationships around

activities. They rarely sit down with a buddy and talk about how they feel

about certain things or how their personal lives are going. Jobs? Yes. Sports?

Yes. Cars? Yes. Fishing, hunting, golf? Yes. But their feelings? Rarely.

Women do it all of the time. We share from our souls with our sisters/mothers,

and evidently that is very good for our health. He said that spending time with

a friend is just as important to our general health as jogging or working out at

a gym.

There's a tendency to think that when we are "exercising" we are doing

something good for our bodies, but when we are hanging out with friends, we are

wasting our time and should be more productively engaged—not true.

In fact, he said that failure to create and maintain quality personal

relationships with other humans is as dangerous to our physical health as

smoking!

So every time you hang out to schmooze with a gal pal, just pat yourself on

the back and congratulate yourself for doing something good for your health! We

are indeed very, very lucky.

Sooooo… let's toast to our friendship with our girlfriends. Evidently it’s

very good for our health.

Life isn't about surviving the storm; but how you dance in the rain.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

It's R A I N I N G ! ! ! ! ! ! !

Well, that may not seem like such a big deal to some of you, but we central-Kansans are in dire need of rain.  Yeah...means I didn't get to ride this morning...but it's beginning to clear off a little (and we didn't get NEARLY enough rain) so I may get in a ride yet today.

My "main" riding buddy is in Colorado for the next week or two but Mary and I rode to Nickerson yesterday morning.  We had planned to ride today but it was wet.  Tomorrow and Thursday Mary has other plans so I may have to just get out there and DO IT!  So much easier and so much more fun with others.

I stopped by over at a friend's house this a.m. and she has a not-quite-6-month old Yorkie.  He's up to 3 lbs. 5 oz. now.  Without a doubt the cutest thing I've ever seen.  Brutus!  I didn't have my camera with me but I have to get photos soon (if I can get him slowed down enough.)  They're having a 6-month birthday party for him September 4...maybe then.

Hope you're getting rain if you need it...hope we get a little more.  

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Too Funny Not To Post

My apologies in advance...but this just cracks me up!  A cousin sent me this as an email and it just made me laugh!

I suggest all men should boycott Kohl's until the cruelty stops!!!

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Neighbor's Cactus




This is my neighbor's cactus.  My understanding is that it only blooms once per year...and it had 22 blooms.  It still has a BUNCH more buds that she assures me will still open.  I didn't get there in time to take pictures when it was fully open...but I took pictures of her pictures.  This would almost be reason enough to have a cactus...but I don't have a very good history with cactus.  Gorgeous, huh?

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

End of Month

Well, it's the 31st of July and I feel like I've accomplished quite a bit.  Carol and I took off this a.m. with clouds but not really too worried about rain.  It doesn't seem to happen here.  We started hearing thunder and when we were at Avenue A and Main Street, Mary called and wanted to know if we were getting our "bunnies" wet.  No......well, it seems she was just coming up to the south Main bridge and she was getting soaked.  We went on a few more blocks and Mary called again...really getting drowned.  By this time we were at about C and Main and only a half dozen blocks from where she would be.   Shortly she and Jessica appeared and they'd been soaked.  We were still completely dry!  Noticing lightning in the west we decided to go sit it out for a few minutes in a shelter in the park.  Just as we entered the park it opened up!  The other three went on but at the fountain I saw a guy on a motorcycle that I know so I went back to hassle him a little.  When I pulled out of that area, there were two cross-country touring guys.  Struck up a conversation with them and they joined us under a shelter.  Their goal for today was Cassoday.

Mary's husband called and wound up coming to pick her up, but the rest of us rode out to Highway 50 to show the way to the touring guys.  They went on east and we back tracked through the park, through South Hutch, out to Crupper's Corner and on to Yoder.  After a quick break we headed back on Trail West Road to Crupper's Corner.  Jessica (a new rider that just joined us yesterday and is welcome back anytime!!!  23 and a total sweetie.  And an excellent rider!) had an appointment at 10:30 so she dropped off in South Hutch.  She needed 9 more miles which she said she'd get later today to get 700 miles for July.

Carol and I proceeded on around "the long way" at Carey Park, on out to Highway 50, and finally headed home.  Carol needed about 35 miles to have 1,000 miles for July, and I needed 38 miles to get 800 miles.  We all made our goals!!!   I now have 2,509 miles for the year...the biggest year I've had in a long, long time...and the year isn't even done yet!

I've enjoyed riding more this year than I think I ever have.  Carol is great company and the miles really just fly by.  The other day we were talking and we both agreed that even though we've known each other for years and years, it's only been the past couple of years that we've really connected.  She credits my ex and I for being the reason she started riding...and I have to laugh because she has so far exceeded anything either of us ever did!  She's a very solid, safe rider and that's especially important when you're riding with others.  There's a time for fun and goofiness...and there's a time to know that your mistake could be your LAST mistake.

And with that cheery note....I'm outta here!!!  Count 'em....you know!

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Hot, Hot, Hot...But Still Riding

We're still seeing three digit temps nearly every day.  We got a sprinkle of rain last night so today it stayed around 98 for a high...but VERY humid.  I haven't heard how much rain we got..but NOT MUCH!!!  The rivers are basically dry...dry and cracked.  Sad.  Farmers are selling their cows because there's no feed nor water for them.  Sign on the front of a church the other day: "Whoever's praying for this heat, please stop!"

Carol and I (and sometimes Mary) are still riding pretty much every day.  Most days are 32 milers.  We usually go either to Yoder (the long way) or over to Partridge.  This morning there was almost no wind and that was out of the north, so we went to Nickerson.  As we pulled up in front of the convenience store we noted there was a touring bike sitting there.  We went in and got our drinks but never saw the owner of the bike. 

The tables were full of "old guys" (probably our age) so we took our drinks and went back outside to sit on the curb.  Shortly this gorgeous young Adonis appeared.  WOW!!! Never heard how old he was..maybe 25 to 30.  Dark hair..completely stirred and looked like it had been cut with an axe.  Almost a Rastafarian look.  The prettiest teeth..straight and white. And a totally sweet, cute personality.  He's from Southern California, going east.  He'd stayed at Sterling last night and was going to try to meet up with his friends/co-riders today.  Thinking maybe in Eureka.

He immediately (at a glance) noticed the Rivendell that Carol rides.  He was clearly a fan and knew his stuff about bikes.  We commented that he's riding a Brooks saddle and we wondered how he liked it.  Not an easy move!!  He told us he's "totally vegan" so he had a hard time deciding to get a Brooks saddle (all leather) but that he really likes it. (Carol has had three Brooks saddles and can't get one to where it's "broke in" yet...they tend to break you before you break them!)

Carol was asking him if he was finding it hard to find stuff to eat and he said no...but he really likes French fries!  He works in an agricultural industry with organically grown fruits and veggies.  Interesting young man. 

We wound up talking for quite a while and then we all left Nickerson together and rode 82nd back over to Plum where he turned north (for a mile) and Carol and I turned south and came back to Hutch.  All in all a very pleasant experience.

I'm well over 2300 miles for the year now...and that's makes my biggest year since 2007...and maybe longer because I don't know where (if) my earlier records are.  Carol leaves shortly for a Colorado tour and I've promised myself that I'll continue to ride while she's gone.   'Course, I'm going to work in a move to a new house in that time too....so we'll see.

Get out early and enjoy the earlier part of the day...'cause it's gonna get HOT later in the day!  And..of course, count your blessings!

Thursday, July 12, 2012

More Riding...and More Eating!!

Yesterday Carol and I rode to Inman...kind of "the long way."  I wound up with a little over 40 miles by the time we got back to Hutch.  Once again the Harvest Cafe in Inman has made my A list.

When we walked in the waitress smiled and said, "You gals are a day early!!"  (Every other Thursday is cream puff day - see earlier post)  We just said the wind was right so we came to Inman.  We ordered coffee (also the best coffee around) and asked what they had for dessert.  Schnetke...or something like that.

Schnetke is a German pastry...kind of like a light biscuit dough that's filled with either cherry or raisin and then baked (I think.)  Online it shows all versions but what we had was about 3 x 5 inches and absolutely delicious!  WOW!   Carol commented on its "homemade goodness" and said, "I think the cherry filling is evidently home made too...doesn't taste like the stuff out of a can!"  It was served slightly warm. Yummy..just plain yummy!

On the way home yesterday I told Carol that I thought I'd have in 2,000 miles for the year by the time I got home.  I didn't.  I was 3.44 miles short.  Very tempted to go back out but finally convinced myself it wasn't that big a deal.

BUT...this morning Carol and I rode to Yoder and I got another 32+ miles.  So NOW I have 2,028.65 miles for 2012.  At the end of May I had 1,005 miles.   I'm lovin' this...it's good for me in sooooooo many ways...physically, mentally, emotionally, spiritually...good stuff!

Get out and enjoy your day..and you know....count your blessings!

Friday, July 6, 2012

Horse on the Road

This is probably more endorphin or adrenalin induced biker humor....

Carol, Mary and I took off on our bike ride this a.m.   Got out to Crupper's Corner and turned west.  About 5 miles west (near Whiteside Road) a horse came up out of the ditch and ran across in front of us.  As soon as it spotted us, it took off at a pretty good clip going south down Whiteside.  We decided we should "call it in..."   Not knowing exactly where one reports these things, we chose to call 911.

I pulled out my phone, hit the numbers, and when the dispatcher answered I told her we were on the corner of Trail West Road and Whiteside and there was a horse running loose...running south on Whiteside.  She asked for a description of the horse.  Yeah, I'm from Kansas...I'm "farmy"...but I don't know how to describe a brown horse.  Sorrel, bay, roan, chestnut...I dunno!!!  I know buckskin, palomino, paint, appaloosa, maybe even a dapple gray.  But he was plain old brown.  So I said, "He looks like an Amish horse."   Carol and Mary were absolutely crackin' up!!!   Finally I said, "He's a drab brown horse..kinda skinny-ish...looks like a buggy horse."   The dispatcher seemed to know exactly what I meant, but Carol and Mary were both giggling like crazy!

On the way back to town Carol mentioned that she could hardly wait to get home and tell Billy (her husband) that we'd seen an "Amish horse!"

Well.... maybe you had to be there....

Another 29+ miles to log in today...skipped yesterday (stiff neck), but rode 36 miles on 4th of July (stiff neck then too...but thought I was going to wear it off riding..didn't.)

Have a great day....get out early, beat the heat, and watch the gorgeous sunrises we've been having!!!  And....don't forget to count your blessings....I'm serious!

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Ride to Ruthie's at Partridge

What a great morning.  We took off early as usual and wound up riding west from Crupper's Corner over to Partridge.  Sign says it's 9 miles to Hutchinson.   Don't know what part of Hutchinson they were measuring to and obviously they went via the highway (and we didn't)...but I already had 17+ miles.

There's a tiny restaurant in Partridge called Ruthie's.  I think I posted something here one other time about Ruthie's.  (One day Mary and I drove over and we'd heard there was a restaurant there and didn't find it, so we asked some guy walking down the street.  His response was something like, "Yeah...up there on the corner....if you don't mind getting food poisoning"   We skipped it that day.)  Carol's husband goes to Ruthie's a lot and my ex-husband goes there quite a bit.  This morning Carol said, "Well....do you guys want to risk going to Ruthie's???"  We all said YES!

Partridge is a tiny town...dirt Main Street...and the cafe is ultra-small.  Lots of stuff piled everywhere and lots of signs and newspaper articles posted here and there on walls and refrigerators.  Toast is $.40....yeah....that's 40 cents!!!  Oatmeal is $.75.  And everything is really, really cheap.  I didn't see this first hand but I've been told if you want jelly for your toast, you get a jar with a spoon in it!  You want a can of pop?  They're in the refrigerator..help yourself.  Same for cream for your coffee.  This a.m. Mary and I each had a Diet Coke and Carol had coffee.  No charge for the coffee and Carol paid for the cans of Coke and I think it took $1 to pay for both of them.  :)   Awesome, huh?

We were the only ones in there at the time and Ruthie stood/sat and chatted with us.  She's a charmer!!!  She got "good old common sense" and is a true gem.  She keeps her prices low because she has a lot of farmers that come in there and they're having to pay double for seed and fertilizer these days.  She said she's heard of places that charge $2.39 for a piece of pie.  Can you just imagine that!?!?!

All in all...and this comes from others more than first-hand knowledge...I'd recommend Ruthie's Cafe.  She cooks and thinks like your mother used to...if it's got mayonnaise in it, don't keep it too long.  If it needs to be cold, keep it cold!  I've heard the food is really good and I know the prices are absolutely ridiculously low.  And Ruthie herself is wonderful. (And...watch for this in your local uppity joint:  she swings a mean flyswatter too....away from the tables, away from the food....but she keeps the flies down!)

When we left we all said goodbye and that "we'll be back!"....and we all meant it.  Cool place!  Neat lady!  I'm kind of thinking we just might try to go back tomorrow!!  And I may even try the pie.

I got in 35.72 miles today....which gives me 98.08 for the first 3 days of July....and 1807.41 for the year!  I'm happy!  It's SO good for me in so many ways!

Count your blessings...I do..every day!!!!

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Danger Comes in All Forms

Quite often when we ride...and we usually ride as little as possible in town, and ride the shoulder on the highway....we discuss "danger."  Yesterday we talked about being alert and cautious and aware of what's happening all around us.  We discussed heat and lack of water and angry drivers....and on and on.  I'd even made the comment that you can't just wrap yourself in pillows and stay at home.  An airplane could fall on your house...or a gas explosion (we had those in 2000)...or any number of other disasters.

Case in point:  A very close friend of mine moved about a year ago into a senior citizen high-rise.  She called this morning to tell me about their "excitement last night."  It seems about 10 pm they were told they needed to evacuate the building.  Some 80 residents did just that.  She said LOTS of firemen and police were outside and the area was already taped off with crime scene streamers.  It seems a man was found dead in an apartment on the first floor.  (No one as yet seems to know what the story is on that.  He was older however.)  At any rate, upon entering his apartment to check on his welfare and finding him expired, a stash of explosives were also found.  News reports say "grenades and pipe bombs."  My friend tells me he was a military person in his younger days and everyone thinks maybe these items were memoribilia from World War II.

At any rate, near 11 pm the residents were told they could return to their apartments...all except for the south wing of the first floor and apartments 209 and 211.  My friend Pat lives in 209!   She was finally allowed to return to her place about midnight.  She said she's been much more concerned today than she was last night when she didn't know what was going on.

So...I repeat...get out and do something fun.  You only live once and you might as well do it while you can.  Be aware, be careful, but bottom line:  when your time's up, your time's up.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Again with "Biker's Humor".....

Carol and I (and sometimes Mary) have been putting in quite a few bicycle miles...at least for a bunch of old women!  Since June 14th (the date of my last post here) we've ridden 38.01, 28.50, 32.63, 25., 29.85, 41.86, 31.3, 20.46, 32.06, and 41.85 miles...that's a  total of 321.52 miles since June 14...or 662.18 miles total for June.  Am I proud??  Darned tootin', ya whippersnappers!   I'm the youngest (barely) of the three of us and I'll soon be 68 years old.  We had a guy tell us just this morning that he was impressed (we see him nearly every day)...and all I could think was, "So am I!"   Didn't figure I'd ever get back into this much riding again, and I'm loving it.

Yesterday was the second 3-digit day we've had around here (it hit 105 here) and today we're supposed to be around 107 degrees.  This morning it was just Carol and I and we were on for a 42-miler.  On the way back in we were talking about the heat and heat exhaustion and heat strokes, etc.  I told her that yesterday I had taken my car to get the oil changed and was waiting in the very cool, very air-conditioned waiting room when one of the service writers came in from the garage area at the dealership.  He was sweaty and very red-faced and clearly needed to cool off.  There are big double doors at both the north and south ends of this huge drive-thru garage and in Kansas that means the wind is moving through there.  Also they had a big..that's BIG...fan going...but he was clearly very hot.  Carol said, "Oh...and that's so dangerous!"   She was 100% sincere and serious...but all of a sudden it hit both of us how funny it was.  We're cranking along, sweating like crazy, out in the sun.... Duh....   Made us wonder if maybe the heat was getting to us!

It's hot...but it's fun and we all think good for us physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually.  I made the comment yesterday that there would be no war if everyone would get out and do this kind of stuff.  Maybe a little over the top, but .... maybe.

So get out there.  Go early...get home before it gets TOO hot....and hey, don't forget to count your blessings! 

One little after thought here:  Back at the beginning of this year I purchased a couple of Continental Gator tires...little pricey (about $50 each).  They are worth every penny.  The above day of 20.46 miles was because when I was about 11 miles south of here we heard a clicking.  I had a thread-thin wire in one of my tires.  Couldn't pull it out with bare fingers, so I rode it on in.  This is the first flat tire I've had since sometime in December or January.  That's phenomenal for me!  And I actually never had a flat.  I got home and pulled the wire, checked the tube which was punctured, and changed the tire.  But it never went flat when I rode on it for 11 or so miles.  Great tires...I love 'em!

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Maybe You Had To Be There......

You all know by now that I'm a bicyclist.  Well, sometimes when one's riding the endorphins or something make things terribly funny.  We had one of those days today.  This may not be funny to anyone else, but Carol and I found it hilarious!

To begin with, a week or so ago I bought a new pair of Shimano sandals to ride in.  Love 'em!!!  But the left one has a little squeak in it.  (I wore my old shoes one day just to determine it truly is the sandal and not the crank.)  Carol assures me it'll probably go away with time as hers had done the same thing and finally quit.

So it was windy here today...and got windier and windier as the day went on (at noon it was 23 mph with gusts.)  At 6:30 this morning we took off and rode into the wind out to Crupper's Corner (about 11 miles)...then went on to Yoder (another 4 or 5 miles.)  Usually we take a short break and then head back...and that will get us 32 miles total.    It was windy but we just kept plugging along and it wasn't that bad.  We got to Yoder and had our break and I suggested that we take Red Rock Road east out of Yoder for a few miles, then turn around and pretty much have the tailwind all the way back.  Carol's always ready for more miles so we did it.  We got out to the Buhler/Haven road (about 5 miles) and turned around and headed back.  By now there's quite a cross wind but we do ok.  When we got back to Yoder we had to stop for traffic before heading north on Yoder Road for a couple of miles.  I reached down for my water bottle and it literally fell apart in my hand.  The pop-up top just pulled right out of the lid!!!  I managed to go ahead and get a drink and we kind of laughed about it and headed north.  Two miles going with the wind...awesome!  Then we turned west again on Elmer Road.  The second we turned I heard it!  The wind was blowing across the top of my water bottle and it was "hooting."

A little ways down the road Carol said, "You have a regular band going on over there, don't ya?"  We got so tickled it was hard to pedal.  Like I said, maybe you had to be there...but it really was funny.  Every crank my shoe would creak and the water bottle was hooting!

The Bicycle Band

Never a dull moment.  It was a fun ride!  42 miles!  Life's good!  Get out there...enjoy all this...get some laughs...get busy living!!!  And don't forget...aw, you know:  count your blessings!




Friday, June 8, 2012

The Daily News

And so...life goes on here.  Mary got home from the hospital...and I think maybe discovered they must've been "doctoring" her IV.  She does have a little pain, but she says can tell "hour by hour" that's she's improving.  That's good news!  She asked the dr. about riding a bicycle and he reminded her that she'd just had a rather big surgery.  She said when she mentioned wanting to play volley ball Wednesday evening he just rolled his eyes.  No bicycle, no volleyball....at least until after her first check up in about a week.  You just can't keep a good woman down!

Meanwhile Carol and I have really been racking up the miles.  Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, and today we rode to Yoder.  We go "the long way"...out through South Hutch and around Crupper's Corner...then usually come back on Trail West Road (affectionately known as Elmer Road - no dogs, nearly zero traffic.)  I've logged about 32 miles each day...like I've said before, some days I must wobble more.  (I'm either 32+ or high 31's.)

One kind of neat thing that has happened at Yoder:  first day we rode over we got to Yoder pre-8 a.m. and the Kansas Station wasn't open yet so we went to the Carriage Crossing Restaurant.  We were going to sit outside and I went in to get us some drinks.  Carol drinks black coffee and I usually drink Diet Coke.  I had to compromise and have Diet Dr. Pepper (and that's ok)...but when the gal rang them up it was $1.79 and $.50...plus tax $2.46.  Same sized cups, etc.  I thought maybe it was supposed to be $.79 instead of $1.79 so I asked.  The soda was $1.79!  This would be a medium in most places.  If I had seen only the total I wouldn't have cared....but I was surprised to say the least.

So...the next day I noticed there was a pop machine over at Yoder Meats.  I checked my money and had a $5 bill and $.40 in change.  Carol had enough change we could have made it work but I decided I didn't really want one all that bad.  About that time a very good looking man came out of Yoder Meats and wound up offering to pay for our sodas.  No..no..no....we really don't care for any...and we have water.  We went over and sat at the picnic tables next door, took a little break, and got back on the road.

Yesterday we'd barely made it into the Yoder Meats parking lot and the same guy came out, bought me a Diet Dr. Pepper, offered to get Carol one, and was just overall pleasant!!!   I tried to pay him (I was prepared this time) but he wouldn't accept it!  Isn't that nice!?!?!?

Also a week ago yesterday, I bought a new pair of bike shoes: Shimano sandals with clips.  Carol has had a pair for several years and I've always thought they look so cool and comfortable.  I checked on-line and Ebay, but really wanted to try them on so a visit to Bicycle XChange in Wichita left me owning a pair.  I LOVE 'EM!!!!   They're comfortable, and cool and my little piggies feel so free.  Well worth the $$$.

The wheat harvest continues..but we're almost done around here I think.  Get out and enjoy this gorgeous weather.  Mornings are truly spectacular!  Count your blessings!

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Thought for Today

If you can't afford a doctor, go to an airport -  you'll get a free x-ray and a breast exam....and if you mention Al Qaeda, you'll get a free colonoscopy!

Monday, June 4, 2012

Awesomely Weird Great News

Went to see Mary at the hospital this evening.  She had her appendix removed this a.m. as well as some scar tissue that was causing blockage.  It was all done laparoscopically.  Three small incisions.  Mary is looking and feeling great.  Scooted around and moved like "no pain"...and commented that she has ZERO pain.  She said the worst of it was the tube down her throat.  She'd already been up and walked the halls twice (and challenged one of the nurses to a foot race) and was planning on going a couple of more times before bedtime.  They plan to dismiss her tomorrow and when we joked that we'd have her back on the bike within six weeks, she said, "How 'bout this weekend?"  She is going to ask her doctor if she can play volleyball Wednesday night!!!

I love my friends!  Tough, strong, confident, independent women!  (And after that comment...for those of you who don't know us...NO, none of us are gay! And again for those who don't know us...it wouldn't matter if we were!! Who cares?!?!)

Great news...Happy to have Mary back to "normal"....well, as normal as Mary gets!

Rides and Not So Good News

Well.....to start with, Carol and I rode Saturday morning: 28.5 miles.
And we rode Sunday: 25.12 miles.   Both absolutely beautiful rides!!!!

And after coffee this morning, Carol and Mary and I were supposed to ride...BUT...about 8:15 Mary's husband called me and told me that she's in the hospital.  After supper last evening she got really bad stomach pains and they wound up going to the emergency room.  (To start with you need to know these are people who don't know pain....i.e., Mary crashed her bicycle...road rash, etc....Wes had her get back on and they rode about 40 miles so she wouldn't get stiff!!!)  Anyway, he said they thought maybe she had a blockage or something and kept her overnight.  I told him that I'd let the other gals know and I'd be up to the hospital right after coffee.  While we were at coffee (about 9:15 or so) he called again and said probably not a good time to go see her as she has a tube down her throat and they were prepping her for surgery: emergency appendectomy!  Holy Cow!!!  Mary.....Mary who NEVER is sick...who NEVER complains about hurting anywhere!!!!  Holy Cow!!!!  I haven't heard any news since.  I'll be checking in on her later.

I've made several phone calls to let everyone know what's going on and they all say about the same thing:  Mary?  She's NEVER sick...Mary????    Yeah, Mary!

The upside is that's she's in incredible shape...muscle tone, lungs, heart, etc...and should spring back pretty quickly.  Carol and I think we can have her back on a bicycle within six weeks!  And Mary's no slouch...she's not going to just lie around and do nothing.  She'll work at getting well FAST!!!

Carol and I did go ahead and get in a ride this morning.  Didn't leave til about 10 a.m. and it got pretty hot and muggy before we got back.  But I get to log in another 25.01 miles!

Get out there...enjoy this wonderful weather....and of course, don't forget to count your blessings!  They're right there...lookin' ya right in the face!

And P.S.   Give those combines ROOM!!!!!  We had to get over and stop for two this morning....they use ALL the road and need ALL the courtesy we can give them.  They're doing a job with time and weather restraints.

Thursday, May 31, 2012

For Amber Waves of Grain.....


A month early!!!  Newspaper cited several older farmers who said they've seen wheat harvest put off until Fourth of July because of too much moisture, but no one remembers harvesting before/on Memorial Day.  The elevators were open here on Memorial Day.  The harvest is ON!!!

I always used to relate wheat harvest to Biking Across Kansas (week June 12 falls in.)  Usually they were about the same time...which made riding somewhat dangerous.  For you non-Kansans, combines and wheat trucks are usually pretty big and pretty wide...and usually the combines have to be transported from cut to cut.  And any good Kansan knows, whether you're in a truck, car, or on a bicycle:  Custom cutters have the right-of-way!!!  (Not meant to be snide!!  Seriously, that's our bread [literally] and butter!!!  Give 'em all they need in every way!)
I took these photos yesterday, the 30th of May, on Elmer Road (officially it's Trail West Road) between Crupper's Corner and the Yoder Road.  Another great ride!!!  (28.03 miles)

Last evening we had storms.  We really need moisture...although I'm sure most wheat farmers would heartily disagree right now.  I know there were a lot of reports of hail and that along with heavy rain and winds up to 70 miles per hour are NOT good for wheat harvest.  Muddy fields, wet wheat, downed wheat...booooooo!!!

But this morning is beautiful....very cool and a little windy...but Carol and I got out and did a few miles.  Not many as the north wind is stout...but I had to have at least 8.16 miles to finish May.  I got 13.17....so I now have 1005.01 miles for the first five months of the year.  Not terrific...but for me, it's fantastic!!!!  I'm happy!!

Count your blessings and enjoy life!!!

Monday, May 28, 2012

Still Windy...but Riding...some....

Kansas...."People of the Wind".....Yeah, yeah, yeah!!!     At my house it's more like people sick and tired of the wind.

Wednesday was windy...we didn't ride.

Thursday wasn't too bad so Carol and I biked over to Nickerson for a coke.  27.25 miles

Friday was windy again...as was Saturday and Sunday.  Reports of wind at 34 mph with gusts to 39 mph.  So last night I called Carol and asked what she'd think of an early ride.  For you non-Kansans, the wind usually "lies" at night...not always, but sometimes.  So at 6:45 this morning with supposedly a 7 mph headwind Carol and I took off for Nickerson.  We got to the convenience store, had our drinks, and headed back...with a great wonderful tailwind.  Awesome ride.  27.19 miles (obviously some days I wobble more  than others!)  Wind is currently out of the north at 12 mph. 

A group of us (3 are bicyclists) usually go to coffee together on Monday morning...but since today is Memorial Day we're putting it off until tomorrow morning.  On the way back from Nickerson Carol and I were talking about when/where we might ride tomorrow.  Thinking this getting out early worked pretty well, I said, "Well, we could even bike to coffee."   Carol said, "I wouldn't have a problem with that."  I said. " I wouldn't either....but everyone else around us might!"  Anyway...looking at the weather forecast now indications are that tomorrow is supposed to be a relatively un-windy day...so we'll probably give everyone a break and ride later in the day.  :)

Now a little educational item:  When you're approaching bicyclists "head-on"...i.e. they are on their side of the road, and you're on your side....please don't scoot clear over to your right with one wheel nearly in the ditch.  We're not as big as a car, and by getting over you risk catching your tire/wheel on the edge of the pavement.  And if you do that, what are you gonna do???  You're going to JERK it back...and right into us!!!  Just stay in your lane...we'll stay in ours.  OK?  OK. (For what it's worth....experience has taught us to get single file when there's even a car approaching.  Sometimes then they don't hug that edge quite so tightly.)

With that....get yourself out there and enjoy this weather!!!  It's gorgeous....and this is Kansas...one of these days that's going to be a HOT wind...go now, sweat later!  And count your blessings while you're out there!

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

WINDY!!!!!!!

Monday:   29.52 miles on bicycle.
Tuesday:     20.32 miles on bicycle.
Wednesday:  see photo:
So....they're saying 40-45 miles per hour with gusts.  Needless to say...we're not riding today!!
Welcome to Kansas!

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Cousins, Chocolate, and Cycling

Yesterday I met my two cousins in Abilene for lunch at a Mexican foods place, and then "visiting time" at Russell Stover's!  I came home with lots of memories, lots of laughs....and lots of chocolate.  If you haven't made a stop at Russell Stover's (just off I-70 west of Abilene), you either should....or really should not!  Fresh, cheap, abundant chocolate.  Delicious, tasty, gooey, messy chocolate.  Satisfying, soothing, fattening (oops) chocolate.  My crisper bin is FULL....plus a large box on a shelf in the fridge.  And that doesn't even take into account all that I consumed. Wow...it's goooooood stuff!  My personal favorite (at least so far) is a Giant Rocky Road Bar.  It's actually more like an over-sized cluster.  Marshmallow, walnuts  and milk chocolate.  230 calories. 1.75 ounces...that's pretty big...and only $.37 each.  I bought several a lot. They're absolutely delicious!!!

So....then this a.m. Carol and I rode to Yoder (12.47 miles south of Hutchinson) to meet Mary and a couple of her bowling friends.  (They drove over in cars.)  We left Hutch about 8 a.m. as we're supposed to have strong south winds today.  Got to Yoder about 9 or so and joined the group for coffee (well, in my case, diet Dr. Pepper.)  Then Carol and I decided that since we'd have a strong tailwind all the way home, we'd go on south 3 miles or so.  We did.  I got home with 32.33 miles.  GREAT ride!  Up to 22 mph and barely pedaling!

Great day...get out there!  The wind is your friend! 

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Moments to Savor, to be Proud of..and Moments to Wish Undone

The weather has been spectacular here.  Absolutely perfect for bicycle rides! 

Sunday Carol and I rode over to Nickerson for coffee/diet coke and met two "sets" of touring bikers.  The first two guys were from Santa Barbara, California and Seattle, Washington.  They were traveling from Pueblo, Colorado to Pittsburg, Kansas.  They had stayed at Hedrick's Exotic Animal Farm at Nickerson the previous night..and seemed to think it was pretty neat.  The man from Santa Barbara said that he didn't mean to cast aspersions on Kansans, but that he'd never seen so many FAT people.  I immediately sucked in and tried to stand taller.  He said that the other room occupants at the farm were "at least 40 pounds overweight!"  I can only assume his sunglasses were smudged and he couldn't see me very well.

Later, on the way back to Hutchinson, we met two more fellows who were from West Virginia.  After a little conversation, one of them asked (about the herd of cows and calves that were grazing in the pasture next to us), "So....are those eating cows?"  I smiled and said, "Yep, they're eating right now, in fact."  Totally went over his head!  Then he pointed to one particular cow and said, "So how old is he?"  Carol said, "Those are mother cows...."  He also wanted to know if the little ones were veal.  Ya know, this being a country hick ain't always easy!!!! 

So Sunday's ride took us a little longer...but we did get in a little over 27 miles.

Monday after coffee Mary and Carol and I took off again on our bikes.  We thought the wind was out of the north...but it wasn't.  So we cut across town, got on the bike path, went out through South Hutch, past Crupper's Corner and headed west.  By Crupper's Corner we already had in over 11 miles.  I made some comment about the wind..and Carol said, "Well, if you don't think you can make it, we can turn around."  It wasn't said to be a challenge, and we all laughed at the same time.  I wasn't about to turn around and she knew it!!!  :)   We got in over 27 miles.

This morning Carol and I met Mary down by the reformatory and rode Yoder Road down to Trail West (aka Elmer Road).  Took Elmer Road over to Highway 96 and back into South Hutch.  Just on the south edge of South Hutch we have to go under an overpass.  There is NO shoulder.  We are all very careful and bluntly, darned good riders.  We take our lane (it's four lane) and hold it.  That's the best way to keep from getting hit.  Be assertive!  Well, a large truck pulled right up on us and laid on his horn.  He had an entire other lane and no other traffic.  He just wanted to be an obnoxious butthead!  And was successful.  Then's when my "not so proud moment" occurred.  As we turned the corner by McDonald's to get off of the main street, we signaled to turn.  As I completed the turn, I continued to hold my arm up...even higher...finger extended...and yelled "F--- U"...only I didn't abbreviate it!  We rode on and the trucker caught the next corner and came around the block facing us.  We were all wondering which driveway, yard, what we'd have to take to get away from him.  We all noted it was a metal company out of Wichita and he stopped and tried to talk to us.  Carol went on by.  I stopped by his door and said, "What's your problem?"  He said, "What problem?"  I said, "You're an asshole" and rode away.  Mary was with me the whole time.  As we rode on around the next corner we could still hear him yelling...no one responded.  We all know the name of the company...but you know what....me flipping him off and yelling obscenities won't make a difference.  He's a moron.  Calling the company won't make a difference.  Then he'd just be an unemployed moron with time on his hands.  I should have just turned the corner and let him think he'd won.  Wish I would have...I'd be much prouder now.  Anyway, we all had something to talk about (not that we ever lack anything to talk about)...and I got in another 26+ miles.

So that's my moments to savor, to be proud of...and moments to wish undone.  But..for what it's worth....the thought crossed my mind:  I have a can of Halt hanging on my handlebar bag....oooooooohhhhhh....I could have made an even bigger mistake!!!!

Count your blessings....get out and enjoy this gorgeous day!  It's AWESOME!!!!!

Saturday, May 12, 2012

City-Wide Garage Sale

Buhler, a small town about 12 miles northeast of Hutchinson, had their city-wide garage sales today.  I've participated in this event for the past 3 or 4 years..setting up my display of sterling silver jewelry.  Although it's not "garage sale" merchandise, I usually do pretty well.   I went to high school (many years ago) with a guy that owns a lot of Buhler properties, so I've always been able to set up my tables in front of one of his stores - right on Main street.  Today was no exception.

Traffic was somewhat light...due to either cool, cool weather..almost rainy from time to time, to competition in Hutchinson with the annual art fair going on (it's a pretty big deal)...to possibly people just deciding it was too hard to get there.  Construction on K61 highway prevents crossing at 30th street...so I went to 43rd, then found out I couldn't go north to 56th..so continued east to Prairie Hills and then back south to 30th..then east on 30th, north on Buhler-Haven road....lots of wasted time and miles.  (BTW...it IS the Buhler-Haven road...NOT the Haven-Buhler road as some people I know think!!!)  At any rate, traffic was light but the people who were there still bought a few items - enough to make it worth my time going.  An overall enjoyable day.

But....one of the most enjoyable events of the day:  Five..and later 6 or 7...young men (someone said they were 5th and 6th graders) played their musical instruments right across the street from us.  The trombone player had music in his soul..or maybe that's "soles," as he'd start playing and he'd start moving.  He just almost danced the whole time.  One of the late-comers performed a really good "robot" dance.  Yeah, they weren't pros, but they were really "into" it, and it was fun to listen and watch.   I had noticed people just walking on by them, so I dug out $1.35 and went across the street.  They were taking kind of a break so I said, "Ok, guys...here's the deal:  you gotta seed this pot so people will know they should drop a little money here!"   I put the dollar into one of the horn cases and laid the quarter and dime on top of it.  They all thanked me and  one of the boys said, "We have a $5 bill....but were afraid to put it out or the wind might blow it away!"  I said, "That's why I brought the quarter and the dime!"   They were so cute!  They played most all morning and got a lot of attention.  I also saw several people drop money in the case.  Cool, huh?  My son is/was a musician...starting very young...and I truly believe they need all the encouragement they can get.  Saw a bumper sticker years ago that I always liked:  Hug a musician...they don't get to dance much!

Fun day!  Made a little $$$, caught up with a couple of old friends and what's going on in their lives, and just all in all enjoyed the day!   Hope yours was good too.  Count your blessings...they're many!!!!

Friday, May 4, 2012

Potato Chip Cookies

I have several blogs that I read about every day.  Yesterday one of my favorites posted a recipe and photos for "Potato Chip Cookies"....along with a shout out something like "Stop what you're doing and make these cookies!!!"

So today I made cookies.  They're ok...they're pretty good.  They aren't a super sweet cookie..at all... more like a pecan sandie.  Don't know that I'll make them again...but if you don't like super sweet they might be right up your alley.  (Personally I love the peanut butter cookie with the bite-size Snickers or Milky Way baked inside..super sweet!!!)

But I did get out and go for a bicycle ride earlier today.  Mary and I got in a little over 22 miles; Carol is still hiking the Grand Canyon...we think.   More on that later...  :)

Count your blessings...eat a cookie....and if you want this recipe go to http://www.bossybetty.com/.  Have a good one!!!  (BTW...that's only the first cookie sheetful of cookies....there were more later.)

Thursday, May 3, 2012

She Said It Was Usually About My Flowers!!!

Recently, on a special trip to St. Louis, my NOW daughter-in-law told her sister that I have a blog.  When her sister asked what I write about, DIL said, "Usually about her flowers...." 

Well...here I go again!!  :)  

Lots of knock-out roses...gave two plants away...still have too many:

 And snapdragons........
 In several colors......
 Yellow being my favorite.....
 And while I say I don't like roses...this one is very pretty.  But still has those "big-assed" thorns I hate so much!
And so, life continues to be incredibly boring on the plains of Kansas.  The wind blows too hard to ride comfortably (I know, who said I needed to be comfortable!!!???)   But it'll get nicer soon and I'll be back out riding.  (Also, one of my main "co-riders" is in Arizona hiking the Grand Canyon and I hate riding alone.)

Count your blessings....have a wonderful May.

Here's where the "proper" people should quit reading:
A friend of mine used to say on May 1:
"The first of May
The first of May
Outside screwing starts today!!!"

Get yerself some!!!

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

And They Lived Happily Ever After.....

What a fantastic weekend I just had!!!   In order to maintain some privacy, I won't post photos of people here....but my son and his sweetheart of several years got married last Sunday morning.

I went to St. Louis on Friday, arriving about 3:30 pm.  The "couple" came to the hotel (Drury Inn...very nice!!!) and we got ready and went to meet the rest of her family.  I'd never met any of them before so was naturally a  little nervous.  Went to a Mexican foods restaurant (El Maguey) and it was great.  Super, super neat people.  Her parents, her twin sister and her husband and 2 year old son (what a doll!!!), her other sister and her husband...all were fantastic people.  I felt quite comfortable within just minutes of arriving.  A lot of food and drink and getting "stuffed!"

Then Saturday am while the bride and her female entourage had "mani's & pedi's", my son and I took in The Container Store and REI.  Both places extremely addictive!!!  WOW!!!   I'm actually glad they're not local!   At noon my son dropped me off at the Pastries of Denmark restaurant where I met the other women plus the daughters' godmother and her daughter.  Lunch was "girl talk" and "wedding talk"...and a lot of fun!

Saturday night was the "dress up" dinner at Bristol.  VERY nice...the food was exquisite, the service was too.  Again...what a great group of people.  And again...a lot of food (and drinks) and laughter.

My son spent the nights with me at the hotel, so Sunday am I followed  him in my car to the Old Hickory Golf Club where the wedding was to be held.  Beautiful setting!  The bride was stunning!!!  She's truly a very very pretty girl!

I'd never been to a Jewish wedding before and was in for a treat.  Many customs that I was uneducated about..and found absolutely fascinating.  The grandfathers' prayer shawl was draped over the chupah (canopy).  There were two glasses filled with wine; one to be passed from family member to family member, each taking a sip while the Rabbi said the blessings.  The other glass was a couple's blessing to be shared by the bride and groom.

Since this was an interfaith marriage, the Rabbi read/sang the seven blessings in both Hebrew and in English.  The couple circled each other seven times, maintaining eye contact.  This is to confirm they will protect each other (and more.) 

A ketubah - a marriage contract - is arranged and signed by both bride and groom, the Rabbi, and two witnesses.  It will be displayed in the couples' home.

The ring exchange was also different than I'd seen before.  The groom places the ring on the bride's right hand index finger as vows are spoken.  Then the bride places the groom's ring on his left hand ring finger.  Then the bride is told if she accepts her groom as her husband, the two of them should move the ring to her left hand, ring finger.

Also at one point the bride and groom each hold one end of a knotted handkerchief (the bride's grandfather's or great grandfather's I think) while repeating vows.  And then of course, there's the smashing of the glass.  The glass is inside a cloth and the groom steps on it and smashes it.  I read later that it is often said that's the last time he'll get to put his foot down!  :)   

After the ceremony and lots and lots of photos, we went to a private room for a wonderful brunch.  The parents of the bride then had a "crowning."  Traditionally after the last daughter is married (today it is sometimes the last child..male or female), then crowns are placed on the heads of the parents and their children dance around them.  Two wreaths were available and the bride and groom placed them on the parents' heads and then all three daughters and all three son-in-laws danced around them and gave them kisses.  Lots of laughter and fun!!!

All in all, an absolutely wonderful weekend!  What a memory!  Oh...and also both the bride and the groom had chosen songs to be read during the ceremony.  My son chose "What Are You Doing For the Rest of Your Life" and the bride chose "This Is Always."  Lyrics can be googled if you're interested....every time I read them I'm still leaky-eyed! 

I'm delighted to see my son take this step.  I'm delighted with his bride...she's not only beautiful, but smart and talented as well...and much more!  This is good...this is very good!

Count your blessings...mine are HUGE in number!!!  And I do appreciate them!