Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Not so good news....

I'll begin with the happy stuff - spring, as I noted on the last post, is just around the corner. My sedums are poking out . Since I will be gone for a while (more on this later) I had to roast the contents of the big 3 pound jar from Costco NOW - Thought I would put a recipe on here in case anyone else who loves garlic is interested in saving money and time. This is what the whole 3 pounds looks like when roasted.
For 1 pound of peeled garlic cloves:
Heat 1/2 c extra virgin olive oil in a pan on medium high, add the garlic, stir to mix, add 1/2 t salt and 1/4 t fresh ground pepper. Heat, stirring, 5 - 10 minutes until the garlic begins to turn color. Dump in a baking dish and finish in the oven - preheated to 375º for about 30 minutes - check to make sure it doesn't overcook. It should be soft and golden. Drain off the oil and cool.You can refrigerate it for 2 - 3 weeks, or freeze for up to 6 months. Or, you can eat it like candy! I save the olive oil to use later.

Now that the pleasantries are taken care of, down to the serious stuff. My aunt, who pretty much raised my sister and I, has been diagnosed with acute leukemia and has 2 weeks to 2 months. Dean and I are headed to Vancouver in the morning to pack up her apartment - he will come back Friday, but I will be staying up there for who knows how long. Mary (sister) is doing her radiation and was told today that she will be on pain meds and unable to drive. Needless to say, this news came as a shock for her. She has her own business and is very concerned about this new development. A lot on her plate right now, so I will do what I can for as long as I can. So, there probably won't be much in the way of new posts for a while. Please send good thoughts and prayers in the direction of my sister, my aunt and my nephew.
Thanks everyone.

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Weekend Update (Thanks, SNL...)

Lori Ann and Dimitri came to visit this weekend - and a fun time was had by all - as usual. We met them in downtown Terrebonne and traveled into the BIG city for a nice lunch at Deschutes.Came home and sat around talking for hours. Had a "wee" bite to eat, then went to the "hole" (formally known as the Sandbagger) for the standard ranch entertainment - karaoke! The highlight of the whole evening was when 4 guys got up and did a SUPERB "Seven Bridges Road". Amazing! It gave me goose bumps. Judy was there - our favorite - and Maka was serving up her usual. A great evening!
This morning, we got up, had breakfast and the 4 (er, 5, counting Abby...) took off on a morning walk. Went the long way - down along the river trail below our place. Here, Lori Ann and Dimitri take a break with Abby. This is below our place.
Interesting stratification - red rock below, then river rock and ash, and nice rock walls above. I'm not a geologist (duh!) but this sure shows eons of time.
More of the same........
This was the very first wildflower I have seen this year, so I HAD to take a picture of it. Spring is on it's way!
Coming up the steep part - lots of scrambling amongst the rocks. And, BTW, we saw more of the "cat" tracks and have come to the conclusion that they are Cougar (Mountain Lion) tracks - way too big for bobcat. We have heard that a pair of Cougar have been spotted crossing the North Pasture here on the ranch which is not too far from us. Well, we know where they have been hanging out lately! The BIG climb out.
This is the flat that we came up from the river trail to the main trail. It's sure pretty down there. And wild!When we got back to the house, this is where we headed. Nice and sunny and warm on the deck. I think Dean is taking a nap while Dimitri catches up on the brew news.
Well, D and LA are now off to Bend and a snowshoeing adventure this evening under the almost full moon. Followed by a night at Mc Menamins St Francis, and a soak in the famous Turkish soaking tub. It was great having them come to visit again and we look forward to the next time. Dimitri is coming over while poor LA goes to Paris for Spring Break..... They both love it over here, so we are looking forward to them making it more permanent.

In honor of their "mixed marriage" (Greek and Irish) today the BUSHISM will be replaced by a couple of quotes:

"He was a wise man who invented beer."
Plato (Greek philosopher) 428- 347 BC

"Only Irish coffee provides in a single glass all four essential food groups: alcohol, caffeine, sugar, and fat."
Alex Levine

Thanks for visiting - come back soon! XOXO

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Whoops -

I got called on it - no Bushism yesterday, so I better start out with it:
"Laura is out campaigning along with out girls. And she speaks English a lot better than I do. I think people understand what she's saying."
Third presidential debate, Tempe, Arizona, 2004

On to less important things - like the weather is beautiful - cold, crisp, and clear. Nice long walk this morning. Only exciting thing was watching a raven on top of a power pole munching on a small bird. We could see the feathers floating down........ Didn't know they ate their own kind.

I'm feeling a bit political after the Obama victories this last Tuesday, so thought I would share a couple of things. Here is another site that matches your opinions with those of the candidates - it is a little more comprehensive, I think. And this (link is no longer good - I have copy/pasted the article at the bottom of this post) is an interesting article that examines the Obama drawing power. And this one is about his speech writer - just a young kid who "channels" Obama when he writes.... I'm finding myself far more interested in the campaign that I had thought I would be.

Yesterday was our "town day". Yep, the BIG city of Bend. Took Abby in for her twice yearly grooming - her hair was soooo long and now that it is (was) warming up, she needed to have some of it removed. We have tried a couple of places in Redmond (trying to keep the $$$ closer to home) but they have been pretty bad. So, we dropped off the dog, went to Costco, then Food 4 Less, Best Buy for a new wireless router (which I haven' been able to get to work yet, but that's another story), then to Sleep Country to "look" at mattresses. But we found a deal and it will be delivered on Friday! We picked up Abby then went to Deschutes for lunch and I tell you, it was the most amazing meal either of us have had in a very long time. Empanadas with a sausage and scallop filling and a verde cream sauce. WOW! Then we filled up the growler for Dimitri and headed home.

So, now it's getting ready for LoriAnn and Dimitri's visit this weekend> Whoot! Whoot!

Just so you don't miss the photos, Sam, here are a few more from the archives
These are from the fishing trip in October with Jim and Janet and Larry and Zenna Schaffer from California. We met up at Hells Canyon on the Snake River, which you can see in the background. Here, the guys are cleaning part of the day's catch. We were able to eat fish every night and even came back home with some.
I hope that Janet will appreciate the humor in this one...............After a long day of fishing. Unfortunately, the weather wasn't very cooperative. Mostly cloudy, cool, and rainy. But we had a good time anyway.
this is the article referenced above - the link no longer works and you would have to "sign in" to see it anyway, so am reproducing it here:

Salvation Show

The Emotion Behind Obama's Appeal

Sen. Barack Obama embraces supporters at a rally yesterday in East Rutherford, N.J.
Sen. Barack Obama embraces supporters at a rally yesterday in East Rutherford, N.J. (By Chip Somodevilla -- Getty Images)
Buy Photo

Tuesday, February 5, 2008; Page A19

WILMINGTON, Del. -- Democrats are divided this year not by the issues but by a feeling and a theory.

This helps explain why the preferences of voters in the Democratic presidential primaries so far have gyrated so wildly. In the absence of deep divisions on policy, Democrats have been cut loose from their ideological moorings. Philosophical unity has bred new forms of conflict.

Barack Obama has surged to rough parity with Hillary Clinton in the national polls not because Democrats reject her carefully thought-out solutions to the central public problems but because he has created in the party's rank and file a feeling of liberation -- from intimidation by Republicans, from old divisions, from history itself.

At a packed rally in a downtown square here on Sunday, emblematic of Obama's appearances around the country, the candidate drew the usual applause for the usual Democratic applause lines on the infamy of the Bush administration, the urgency of universal health care and the unfairness of Republican economic policies.

But he connected most when he spoke of his willingness to oppose the Iraq war when many, including Clinton, didn't. This marked his liberation from Republican bullying on national security. He spoke of the surge of young people into politics and the extraordinary levels of participation in the Democratic primaries. This spoke to his party's desire to be liberated from the old math of the Reagan era.

And on it went: He noted the multitude he drew to a rally in Boise, Idaho, of all places (liberation from the old electoral map); the support he has won from Republicans (liberation from divisiveness); and his determination to govern "not by the polls but by principle" (liberation from calculation and, to some, from Clintonism).

All this strikes Hillary Clinton's supporters as terribly unfair. Some liberals who support Obama acknowledge privately that many of her positions on domestic issues are more carefully crafted and in some respects more liberal than his.

Her steadfastness in supporting a requirement that all Americans buy health insurance is instructive. Clinton is right that universal coverage will require a mandate of some sort. Obama's political attacks on the mandate are not only wrong, they may set back the future prospects of health-care reform by feeding ammunition to its opponents.

One piece of Obama campaign literature looks suspiciously similar to the "Harry and Louise" ads run in the 1990s by the health insurance industry against the Clinton health plan. The Obama ad depicts a concerned young couple and charges: "Hillary's plan forces everyone to buy insurance, even if you can't afford it."

Gene Sperling, a Hillary Clinton economic adviser, says he's disappointed in Obama, whom he generally likes. "I'd rather be in the tradition of Harry Truman, who supported universal coverage," he said, "than in the tradition of Harry and Louise."

But even on this issue, Clinton's advantage is undercut by her repeated refusal -- on display Sunday on ABC's "This Week" -- to specify the penalty she'd impose on those who failed to buy health insurance. Her reticence underscores the political challenge of supporting mandates of any kind.

The larger difference between Clinton and Obama is in their respective theories of change. Implicit in the Clinton narrative, as she put it on the stump last weekend, is the idea that "making change is hard." Only someone with carefully laid plans and the toughness to go toe-to-toe with the Republicans in the daily and weekly Washington slog can hope to achieve reform.

Obama agrees to an extent. "I know how hard change is," he says. But he promises to transcend the old fights -- the liberation narrative again -- by building a "bottom-up" movement to create inexorable pressure for reform that would draw in even Republicans.

"Good intentions are not enough," he said in his Wilmington speech. They need to be "fortified with political will or political power." Obama marries a softer rhetorical line on Republicans with a more far-reaching and activist analysis of how change happens. He thus manages to go to Clinton's right and left at the same time.

That's why Obama is on the move in a way that worries Clinton's lieutenants. She promises toughness, competence, clarity and experience in a year when many Democrats are seeking something closer to salvation.

One of the politicians who spoke before Obama at the rally, Delaware state Treasurer Jack Markell, cited the New Testament letter to the Hebrews in which Saint Paul spoke of "the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen." It was a revealing moment: While Clinton wages a campaign, Obama is preaching a revival.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Cat Tracks!

Morning walk was rather interesting. We took Abby and headed north on the trail at the bottom of our property, then cross country toward the river. This is the route we took - partly on animal trails, and partly just toward the destination.
I wanted to give you an idea of how steep it was, but this doesn't show it very well At the bottom of the ravine, it flattens out and there are remnants of an old farm road. For those who don't know, Crooked River Ranch was once a large working cattle ranch. There are several stories circulating about the early history of the ranch, but in the early 1900's it did become a cattle ranch. In the mid 60's, the movie "The Wild West" was shot on the ranch and it was those folks who built "Hollywood Road" which goes down to the Crooked River. In 1972, Bill MacPherson purchased the ranch with the intention of turning it into a destination resort. Remember Crooked River Bob from the TV commercials? More people became full timers and the ranch was eventually zoned as residential instead of recreational. There are close to 5,000 residents now, living in everything from the original single-wide mobile homes to million dollar estates. We love the diversity. More families are living here now, and they are considering building a school. Below is an old ranch road.
From the flats, we headed upstream, back toward our place, but closer to the river level. Bill and Joyce are looking at eagle's nests on the canyon wall. This is the Deschutes, looking south.
Looking north - the "trail" is pretty much an animal trail and we saw a lot of tracks today
We are pretty sure that this is a bobcat or cougar print. I should have put something down to compare for size - the print is almost as big as my palm. Good walk today - we were gone 2 hours, so good exercise, too. A beautiful day today. I am doing laundry and hung the clothes out to dry - it's probably in the 60's right now. I am ready for SPRING!!!!!!!!

Monday, February 11, 2008

Weekend Report

We made a quick trip to Vancouver to deliver Denise's car since she came back from school in Chicago with her M Div and is headed to an appointment in Seattle for a few months. There was a break in the weather and the road over the pass was snow free - thank goodness because we didn't want to have to use chains.
We did our IKEA shopping trip - crowded, but always interesting. What a place for people watching, but what's up with all the people going to WRONG way - can't they see the arrows on the floor? We usually hurry through the kid's area, but what wonderful things there are for them now - so colorful!
We were blessed with the opportunity to stay with Gordy and Faye and had some good conversation and lots of laughs. We look forward to attending Annual Conference in June with them in Moscow (Idaho - and "there is no 'cow' in Moscow.......). Should be an interesting conference.
We were able to hear Denise preach on Sunday morning at church - she did a fantastic job, of course, and we overheard many good comments. So good to see everyone in our church family.
We also had some time with my sister who looks pretty good for someone with no hair and foreign things attached to her body - like a feeding tube and a place to administer the chemo. She begins her 7 weeks of radiation (and more chemo, too) on her birthday of all days - February 20th. Everyone please keep her in your prayers. And my aunt is doing quite well for 90 years of age. She has a few issues, but who wouldn't at her age?
The trip back home was uneventful and Abby was certainly glad to see us. We got a good night sleep and got up this morning for our respective walks. Joyce and I did a cross country thing and came upon a grave marker - ashes? - for Earl who died in 1987 at the age of 24. We never know what we're going to find on our walks! We saw a large herd of deer, but I didn't take my camera again! I gotta be prepared. Sorry, Sam, no photos today!

Friday, February 8, 2008


OK, I'm not going to get all preachy here, so don't fret. But, I found an interesting quiz that will show you which candidate aligns most closely with your views on the issues. If interested, go to:
and try it out. You may be surprised - I was (but I'm not changing my vote.....)
This link is slightly different:
Both have links to documentation of the candidate's views.

Thursday, February 7, 2008

Mostly the archives.........

There hasn't been much to write about lately - weather has been rather blah - snows a little in the morning, then mostly melts off. Morning walks have been uneventful for the most part. Dean and I took the 2 kids on Wednesday because Bill and Joyce had to go to Bend and Bentley doesn't like to be left alone - to put it mildly. It started to snow on our walk, then became a blizzard after we got home. The "kids" spent their time playing - pretty funny to watch. Later on, Dean called me into his "office" - there were 3 doe munching away outside his window, so I took a quick photo to post.
Back to the archives again (what will I do when I catch up??)
Bill, Joyce, and I took a day last August and hiked up to the base of 3 Fingered Jack - it was such a great day and such a neat hike that I wanted to put a photo of it in.
And here is Dean's new toy. He has been wanting a dune buggy to explore the many BLM roads around here and he finally found one that didn't cost an arm and a leg. This one needs a little work still, but sure is a fun way to check out the back country. Janet wanted to go for a ride....We ALWAYS go to all-church camp at our camp in Ocean Park over Labor Day weekend. It is so nice to see everyone and catch up, and the weather always cooperates! There was a sand castle building contest, campfires in the evening, a new "zip line" (and no, I didn't...) great food, and the famous "Women's Latte Walk". The BIG event took place on Sunday night - the "no talent show" and the title pretty well sums it up. There was everything from the little ones reciting poetry, telling jokes, and dancing to High School Musical, to REAL talent and everything between. Dean even got up and did a little comedy routine. Every year, a group of crazy adults get together and act silly - this year it was hula hoops! No experience required - obviously. I could do it when I was a kid, but I think my body has changed a bit (do you think?) If any of you get a chance, try to hula hoop now - not easy, but certainly funny! I think we all spent more time laughing than actually hula hooping. I'm hiding in the back, so don't bother looking for me, but I thought I would show you some of the crowd. You get the idea.
After camp lets out on Monday, a group always goes to Cape Disappointment in their respective RV's for a few days. We were fortunate to be able to join them finally. We spent a lot of time chatting and got together each evening for dinner. Around the table, left to right are: Adeline Bailey, Jim and Marci Parsons, Diane and Len Satterfield, Joe Bailey, Dean, Gwyn Vollmer, and Faye and Gordy Wells. Sadly, not too long after this photo was taken, Jim and Marci were in a bad accident in California during a sandstorm and Jim didn't make it. We were blessed to have had the opportunity to spend time with them and get to know them both better. We will miss Jim.
I had to put more than one photo on so that you could see everyone.
Gordy and Faye are part of the group from church that turns 70 this year, along with Dean. They had a big party when they all turned 60 and I'm sure they will again this year.
We were able to walk on the beach quite a bit and Abby sure liked it.

I'm behind on the BUSHISM, but I promise to only do one at a time.......
"You work three jobs?...Uniquely American, isn't it? I mean, that is fantastic that you're doing that."
Omaha, Nebraska, February 4, 2005, to a single mother of three

Saturday, February 2, 2008

Today it's about the eagles

The morning walk was very cold. It snowed a little again last night, but the wind was blowing and made it feel like 20º. Abby went with us, even though we took the same route as yesterday - partly on the road. She was good, though, and sat by my side whenever a car passed - I think there were 3 or 4.........We cut off the road cross country to catch the trail again and were met by Bill and Bentley and the EAGLES. And this was the day I didn't bring the camera! I could have posted an image and wrote: "see that black speck - that's an eagle". There was a pair of Bald Eagles and several Goldens. The most I have seen at one time around here. They were amazing!

We had been concerned about Gary and Teresa (Gary is a long haul truck driver) driving in this weather, but got an email from them and they are fine - though they had to drive the Siskiyous in the mess. Gary's back is acting up - just like his Dad's - so he's taking a few days off to rest it.

Back to last spring - Dean is working in the "before" photo of the SW corner of the house. The "dirt" (no soil around here is really dirt) was sloughing off around the deck support posts a little, so he wanted to build a retaining wall to stabilize it.
And the "after" shot - nice job, huh? Bill had a Bobcat and was digging holes for fence posts, so he helped us fill behind the retaining wall with "dirt" from our septic test holes down below. Not long after I took the above photo, the Bobcat slipped on the slope and the bucket came down and took out part of the wall. Photo below is Joyce helping to dig it out. Within a short time, though, it was all put back together. The next photo is for Dean's brother, Larry - he complains that I put too many cold weather photos in here, so this ought to bring back warm memories. We have quite a patch of cactus that provides us with a more colorful landscape in the SUMMER
And now - drum roll..........
"You can fool some of the people all the time, and those are the ones you want to concentrate on."
2001 Gridiron dinner

Friday, February 1, 2008

It's all about the Deer!

Out for the morning walk after a skiff of snow overnight. The roads were icy underneath - I slipped and fell on my behind at the top of our driveway! We didn't have the dogs with us, so most of the walk was on the road but we only saw 1 vehicle the whole walk! So quiet, we wondered if we missed something in the news - felt like we were the only people around. Heard a dog bark twice and a couple of jets went over really high - so, it was us and the deer - which were out in herds. This little group of 5 posed for me. I saw them and realized that I hadn't posted any photos of our resident deer population except the first post, so decided to play "visitor" and document them. Living here, I've become accustomed to seeing them. I can't allow myself to take all this beauty for granted!
Farther along on the walk, we came upon a rather large herd. Joyce counted 19 all together.
We cut off the road and headed cross country to join up with the trail that runs along the bottom of our property. Most of it is on BLM land, but there is an easement across our land since we own over the canyon wall. This photo is looking across the Deschutes River canyon. The walls were so colorful in the early morning light.
I don't think I posted this photo before - I'm on a deer kick today. Abby and her friend. We taught her right away not to chase the deer and they are quite comfortable around her now.
Joyce's niece, Brittany, was visiting from back east last summer and after Abby got the message across to the deer that we were a friendly bunch, Brit took her time getting closer and closer, talking to the doe until she was able to stroke her back. Pretty amazing. The deer here are used to people, but usually not this calm. Brit wants to be a vet - I think she's on her way.
And now, what you've been waiting for.........
"I think we need not only to eliminate the tollbooth from the middle class, I think we should knock down the tollbooth."
The New York Times (as quoted by Gail Collins), February 1, 2000