More Questions than Answers

If John McCain can work with a Kennedy on the Education Bill and John Kerry on another, how come the Democrats and republicans can't reach across the Aisle and pass legislation that makes sense.  They do have a requirement to pass a budget, or at least a moral obligation to do so.  As the balance of power shifted in the last election, they thought it was some kind of mandate.  I vote that we shift the balance of power to the people and throw out the entire lot of them and start over. 

 Perhaps their poles are too high to see the ground truth.
I have read that if we continue to not have a budget and spending continues the way it has for a couple of years, the deficit will be over 20 Trillion in about six years.  I for one don't want to give them that much power.  I vote no on the Judges to keep them on their toes and perhaps we might all want to change the congress the same way.  
 Does something need changed? 

I personally don't want abortion to be the main form of birth control.  But I also don't want the Federal Government to get between a woman and her doctor in making life decisions.  How can you be for less Government and then interfere with a woman's rights to do what she desires with her body?   How can you spend billions on wars and not support Arts in the schools.  How can they raise money on Carbon tax credits and not spend that money on ways to clean up the environment.  Leadership in Washington needs to step up to the plate and start developing a plan to Govern on those things that are important.

 We the people need to have a Government we can afford.
 Right now the number one thing is a balanced and sane budget.  I'll bet that there are all kinds of experts that could do it but our elected leaders can't.  I call BS on that.



How Would I fix it?

For those that aren't a Republican with a conservative bent, this will seem a lot like blasphemy but I will offer a few items that might go a long way to fixing our problems.  Here they are:
  • I am a landlord and pay my share of taxes on the property I rent.  I think that last year I paid over $6,000 in property taxes on the homes I own.  With that said, I would push a little more of the tax burden on homeowners and less on income tax payers.  I would graduate this over five years.
  • I think that sales taxes are a good form of taxation and put the burden on everyone and not just on the people that pay a pretty high part of the burden right now.  This way, everyone pays.  I would not exempt food stamp sales from this tax.  You eat, you pay.'
  • Every program in the Federal budget needs to be looked at.  Dollar for dollar, what does it cost and what does it do for that dollar.  I would put Federal dollars in a lock box and if it is not spent for the intended purpose, it gets given back to the Feds at year's end.  No more spending Federal Highway Gasoline tax money on entitlements that the States owe.  
  • I would personally turn the federal Department of Education into a Good Idea factory and make all their edicts recommendations.  No Unfunded Mandates.  No Child Left Behind is a goal not the goal line that can cause people to lose money they need to reach the higher goal.  We need to look at the ways we fund our education in low service areas and see if it wouldn't be cheaper too do some alternative education methods.  Who says that we can't teach using TV's and computers with the students at home not transported miles each day.  We are headed to areas in Western Kansas where School Districts are bigger than the counties and they are being consolidated to make them pay because no one is willing to try non brick classrooms.  
  • I would look at ways to bring jobs back to the areas that there are no jobs in.  I would make it easy for low income people to work and continue to keep their medical insurance and some of the benefits they have.  On the flip side, I would reinforce the border patrol to help them electronically screen the payrool files of companies tho stop them from employing illegals.  Most importantly I would shore up the Tax collection so that everyone pays taxes.  
  • Lastly, I would abolish the income tax filing requirement that we all go through on the 15th of April.  I would work on a system that takes a flat tax on every dime that is transferred to anyone.  That would include all forms of income.  Get a dollar in Interest income, pay a dime.  Get a Dividend of a dollar, pay a dime.  Get a income check, pay a dime.  There would be no loopholes to deduct the taxes you pay, no write off on the interest you pay on your house, Nada, zilch.  Get money, pay taxes.
Let me be clear that I am aware that these sound harsh but so did the income tax when it was first put in service.  My main point is, "Do what you did, get what you got!"  We are headed to a place where we owe 14 Trillion and next year 15 Trillion dollars.  Not the way I want to run my rail road.  

If you think I don't like Mexicans, you couldn't be more wrong.  If I had my way, I would annex Mexico and Canada into a North America Common Market and open the borders.  All Laws would apply equally. 



Reverse Bucket List

What do old guys do when they no longer are capable of doing everything or anything they desire?   They begin to count off the things they have done and probably will never do again. I am sure that somewhere on this blog I have touched on the subject and perhaps someday I might go back and compare the two lists to see if I am consistent or like my youth am losing it.  Here Goes:
  • Snow Skiing.  Living in Kansas this is not a bad thing.
  • Finding a new love.  I hope to keep the one I have for as long as I live.
  • Driving a car 100 MPH.  I pulled out to pass a car and hit 85 the other day and I am confident that it was fast enough.
  • Get organized.  I am void of motivation to get and stay that way.
  • Travel outside the United States.   I have decided that there are enough places that I need to see right here at home.  I would love to go to Cuba but the Government is worried that either they will corrupt me or I, them.
  • Move.  If you cannot get organized, moving is next to impossible.  I built this wonderful house for Barbara and she sure as hell doesn't ever want to move.  
  •  Ever finish learning new things.  I hope to read and learn until I am too old to know better.  Then I won't care.
  • Quit writing on my blog.   It may not be as good as it once was, but I swear once I'm as good as I ever was.  I think!


53 Round Nose Pick-up

This last month, it was way too hot to do much in the afternoon so I would wake up early, work on the pick-up and take an afternoon nap.  It seems like now there is little left to do on the truck and too hot to do much else.  I will try to stay out of trouble and not spend too much for a week or two.  I do have a birthday coming up soon and I am looking but there isn't much I want.  I have looked at the electronic gadgets but just how connected does an old guy need to be?   

I have a dream that there will be a day that I will not have 5 or six non connected things and have them all connected.  I would like to be able to work on my computer, have it displayed on the big screen TV and screen all my incoming calls no matter the source (land line or cell)  Right now I can do a lot of that but I have to connect things and/or sync them to get that way.  I want the end result to be transparent to the user (ME!)  There is a certain amount of redundancy where I have to have data for the cell phone and the home computer. 

Oh well, I guess there is never any perfect world.



Another Fine Meal

Tonight we had Dave and his wife Barbara over for a pot roast dinner.  For some reason, I think a pot roast cooked in a crock pot is about as good as it gets.  The only failure was again the potatoes in the frozen Veggie mix.  The one's we put with them that started out as raw potatoes were fine but the frozen one's just mushed out.   I think it gave the broth a gravy like consistency and I really like that in my veggies.

We had a great visit and discussed the future of the electronics world. Dave works on the Geek Squad at best Buy and has all kinds of insight into what is out there now and what will work.  With a birthday coming up on Monday, I am now thinking about what I want in the way of electronic toys.  So many choices and so much money I can spend.  What do I need?  Nothing but hey that's what Birthdays are for.  One thing I will do is drink one beer and smoke one cigar near my birthday.  Only one of both. 

My brother-in-law, Ray, sent us a picture of a Momma Raccoon and her three offspring as they frolicked in the bird bath the other evening.  It was still 100 degrees at 7 PM and I can really understand wanting to play in the water.  The old Ray would have got his gun and plugged one of them but the older and wiser Ray just got his camera and took great pictures.   

Think Rain and cooler weather 106 here today.



Strange Things Happen

Over the weekend, we stayed in a new hotel in Rogers Arkansas.  You know they always have a wireless network and funny things happen whenever I use one of them. I normally carry a cord and wire myself in but this time I also forgot the cord and my mouse.  I am not sure I got hacked, but it darn sure made me change my password on Facebook.  On my home network, I stay logged in a lot of times and this is the first time in a long time that it made me change.  Oh well, like they say, change is good.  The Petty Corollary is Change is good if you can remember your password.   One place I worked had a different password for every system you used, not just one main password.  They they changed it every 30 days.  I was forever trying to remember what I had used last and pretty much rotated between three or four passwords.
We have these Blue Tailed Lizards and I am always careful where I step

 Almost 10 years ago, a couple here in Topeka were killed and the crime was one that the police could not pile enough evidence to convict the guy's ex wife of the murder.  I guess that yesterday they finally arrested her for that crime and she will soon be on her way back to Topeka to stand trial.  One way or the other, the family will finally have closure.  It is just binary, either they prove she did it or they don't prove that she did it.   I like the rest of the world am darned sure she did.  

It was only 77 this morning here in the Heartland.  It didn't even break 100 yesterday.  Now if it could just manage to rain an inch or two over the next week we'll be in tall cotton.  They put those little clouds by every day on the extended forecast but I think they do that just to make us feel good and to cover their bases.  
Some people want it to be colder,  Not ME!

What do you feed your dog?  For years I have fed all my dogs O'le Roy from WalMart and they have all thrived.  If Taco thrived any more, he would be so fat he would waddle.   I was at Sam's Club the other day and picked up a bag of Old Yeller dry dog food and Taco will hardly eat the stuff.   Her is OK with the canned stuff but here I have a 50 lb bag of dry food and a dog that just doesn't like it.  Tough cookies, he will just have it to eat and he will either learn to like it of not.  Geesus, I sound like my dad.  On a trip one summer, he bought a bag of dry Purina dog food and said our dog would either eat it of go hungry.  Rex hated the stuff and took to eating cow pies.  He developed a horrible bad breath and produced more methane than a dairy cow.  he go even with us on the way home by passing gas that smelled so bad that we would have to roll the windows down about every 15 minutes.

I hope that you all have a great week out there.



Old Friends

In a couple of days, I will be in Arkansas visiting with the first friend I ever had.  You know the kind of person that you can just launch into a good visit with no matter how long it has been since our last visit.  Harvey is one of the Superintendents working on the Walton American Art Museum in Bentonville, AR.  he has been there for almost five years and I hate to admit that this is just our second visit in that time.   He says that this November is the projected end date for the project and he is looking forward to being home in Fort Worth with his family.  

I grew up in Wichita on the east side of the town just up the road from the Beech Aircraft Plant number 1 on East Central.  Harvey and his family lived two houses south of us and I think that we just formed a friendship because of the number of girls in both families.  I had two older sisters and he had three or four.  I never could keep the order of his sisters.  Marylin, Sherilyn, Carolyn, Evelyn then Harvey.   We were outnumbered six to two and they never let us forget it.  A lot of other friends came and went but we have always seemed to be friends.  Hope it stays that way.  

 In a stack of stuff from my mother, was a poem that looks like it was printed on a Church Bulletin. Because of the mention of a Missionary meeting on the back side of the poem, it probably came from my grandmother Petty who lived in Eldorado.  Here it is:

Keep On Keepin' On

If the day looks kinder gloomy and your chances kind of slim,

If the situation's puzzlin' and the pros[pects awful grim,

If perplexities keep pressin' Till hope is nearly gone,

Just bristle and grit your teeth, and Keep On Keepin' On.

Frettin' never wins a fight and fumin' never pays,

There ain't no use in Broodin' in these pessimistic ways,

Smile just kinder cheerfully though hope is nearly gone,

Just bristle up and grit your teeth, and Keep On, Keepin' On,



Is it Nap Time yet?

With the crazy August weather here in July, I have a pattern where I wake up early, work outside for four or five hours and then take a shower, eat lunch and take a nap. Even thought I manage to get in a nap, I find myself sleeping a good 8 hours and then back to the grind.  Mostly I have been working on the truck trying to get it back to fair running shape.  Pretty soon I will have to make my way back over to the rental house and work on the siding problem there.  When I get that all done, a good coat of paint is needed in a couple of places.
Snow in Zion in April
I am convinced that no one really understand the weather here in Kansas.  If you go north, about 75 miles there is a cool front that has the temperature about 10 degrees less hot. But, the higher humidity behind the front has the heat index higher than the heat index here.   Something about the water vapor here under the high has just burned away.   In the winter, a cold front brings drier air but this has things turned around.  Oh well.

We are going to have the kids over for dinner tonight.  It is always good to hear things from their side of life.  A good laugh or two is just therapeutic.  

Oh well, I hear the couch calling.



More of the Same

This morning I listened to the current weather conditions on our new weather radio. (Thanks Kenny) they were saying that the normal temp for this time of year is 89 and today will be day five or six of 100+ temperatures.  They did say some good news is that the hot weather has boiled the moisture out of the ground and the air so much that the humidity is falling like a rock and the heat index won't be 114 like Sunday.  It will just be an honest to god 105 today and tomorrow. There is a great big high pressure ridge camped over Kansas and it is not going to move for a while. 

Because Barb has some new Tomatoes on the kitchen counter, I bought a package of bacon.  I love BLT's and with great home grown tomatoes, there is nothing better.  I think a couple of slices for breakfast and a BLT for lunch is about as good as it gets.  Throw in a little toast, some lettuce and it is like heaven.  I really love a BLT and a slice of watermelon.   Throw in a bomp pop for dessert and that's the life.

I am nearing the end of the truck work.  I can't seem to get the brake lights and the tail lights to work yet.  I will go out and spend a little time on that this morning.  better get with the program.



What will it take?

According to the Pew Report, there is no one solution that will eliminate the National Debt.  Right now, it totals about 70% of every dollar made, spent of the US National GDP.  here are their views on what it will take to cure our debt problems:
  • It would take a 43 percent reduction in discretionary spending, a cut of about $590 billion, a figure roughly equivalent to eliminating the Department of Defense.
  • Spending on entitlement programs such as Medicare, Social Security, Medicaid and certain veterans’ benefits would have to be cut by 22 percent. That means that in 2015, the average Social Security beneficiary would receive $985 per month, rather than $1,255.
  • It would take a 32 percent hike in individual income-tax revenues to achieve the 60 percent goal in 2025. That means that the average income-tax liability for every man, woman and child in the U.S. would be $6,520 in 2015 instead of $4,955.
  • Relying just on economic growth, without tax increases or spending cuts, to solve the fiscal problem would require unprecedented productivity gains. In particular, inflation adjusted GDP would have to grow by an average of 4.1 percent annually, instead of the 2.1 percent forecast by the Congressional Budget Office. Such a change would be tantamount to more than doubling America’s productivity growth.
The one thing they warn about is doing drastic things right now in a recession is just bad for everyone.  We need to turn things around a little and then tackle it head on.  

Hot here in the heartland.  Get out early and rest once the heat gets above 95.  My version of rest includes naps.  



114 Degrees Warm

Spent the day working on the bed to the truck.  Barb left about noon to see her beautician and I kept working.  Finally about 2 PM I came in and just drank water by the glasses full.  I checked on the temperature and found out that it was about 100 with a heat index of 114.  I must have been a little indexed myself because I didn't have my glasses and they were not anywhere to be found.   After about a an hour to cool down, I finally went back outside to look in and around the truck.  There they were, right under the truck in the middle.  How I didn't know or notice they were not on my face I can't tell you. 

This morning Barb told me that last night she thought she heard a noise on the deck and when she checked, there was a raccoon catching moths that were attracted to the light.  I thought she was wanting me to do something until tonight I found her on the deck cleaning the window so she could get good pictures of that critter.
Stand by for pictures tomorrow.
This was last winter and I suspect the same little guy



Two Steps Forward, Three Back

Seems like everything I have done with the 53 Chevy Pick up has uncovered another fault that required more work.  When I climbed up in the bed of the truck, I noticed there were several boards that needed replaced.  I intended to replace the front cross piece in the bed and now I will be redoing most of the bed and the bolts that hold the bed on the frame.  I did the bolts on the cheap the last time and this time I think a few grade 8 bolts might make for a better connection.  I have been known to put over a 1,000 lbs (+) of rock in the bed and perhaps something better than common carriage bolts might be a better deal.  
This is the pile of wood that came out of the bed.

I have given up fighting old bolts out of tight places and am using the grinder to remove the old rusty ones.  I am glad that you weren't here to hear me say shucky darn or something worse when I bumped my sore knuckle on the bed of the truck.  Mostly I just removed some skin but it does tend to turn my blue glove purple when I bang it hard enough.  

Snack for breakfast Nutella and a Peach
We got just a little rain last night and it appears the storms went to Kansas City again.  My niece there has been without power twice in a month and each time it was way too hot to suffer through it. 

Every summer we have a bunch of walnut caterpillars show up and make a mess.  here is one of them on the picnic table.
They gang up on the trees and eat branches down to the bare stems.

Then they drop poop everywhere.  This step was cleaned yesterday and it now crunches with dried little poop pieces.

Barb had us scheduled for a Road Scholar program back east in October.  My plans were east of the Mississippi and north of the Mason Dixon line in the fall.  She met that criteria.  It is a short program in some park.  Should give her a good chance to  take some great photos.

Better run.



Old Tin

I made a run to Kansas City to Classic Parts (Old Classic Chevy truck Parts) in Riverside, MO and picked up a new fender for the 53 pick up.  Yes, it was over 100 degrees when I got home.  I stopped and bought a gallon of drinking water and drank about half of it on the way home. 

When I finally waited all I could, it had cooled down to 95 and I started spraying WD-40 and busting bolts loose.  I guess I should say busting bolts as the first three of four just broke off.  Next plan - I decided to use my grinder and cut the bolts off and just replace them.  It took me all of about 15 minutes to just drop the fender.  The new fender looks pretty darned good and it didn't take long to put the new one on.  Actually it took me longer to go to the Hardware store for the new bolts.  (And to bandage my knuckle after a minor grinder wound)  I wonder if it is possible for me to fix and finish a project without some wound or another? 

I think I have been watching too many programs like OverHaulin' and just have this fetish to fix up the old tin in the yard.  Good thing it is the old stuff because I don't have a clue on the newer cars.   The steering wheel on the truck has been broken for a while and it will be nice to be able to drive it without worrying that if I tilt the wheel forward it will shut off. 

Dave and Barb were over for dinner tonight.  We had a great dinner and a very nice visit.  It is always nice to have someone to send part of a watermelon home with.  I love a good juicy watermellon but even I have a limit.

OH well, Better go read a good book.



Technology, Ain't it Wonderful

I am very proud of the things that break and I can fix. Every day, I read about new technology that is evolving and I haven't mastered the one that was replaced.  I am the proud owner of an I-Phone 3 and now the 4 is out.  The only problem is that once I had Dave download "Amazing Grace" on my phone and I can't defeat the pass word he used so I can do anything in Apps.  So I have this really nice phone that will do only what it came from the factory with.  That is only when I remember to charge it and then carry it. The picture below is a Lego man from the collection at Washburn University display of the Lego Collection.  I dropped it down from my I-Phone and then had to re-edit it to  JPEG because it saved it as a PSD file not JPEG. 

Don't get me wrong,  I took a 57 Chevy apart and put it back together without too many parts left over.  Now days I have to study the manual to even replace a burned out bulb on the 2004 Ford.  Twice a year I will finally notice the clock is wrong and either Barb or I will have to drag out the manual on how to set the correct time.  I think if it were completely up to Barb, it just would remain wrong until the change in the next cycle.  I do know that Barb will leave her watch on Kansas Time when we travel.  I drives me almost silly that I can't remember what time it is even when I wear a watch that is right for the time zone we are in.  Oh well, when she goes on vacation, I guess she goes all the way.  Well, You know what I mean...

The weather here in the heartland has taken a turn for the hot.  I mean 100 degrees with a heat index of 105. Not the kind of weather you spend out in the sun unless you drink a lot of beer.  Having been sober for at least 15 years I guess I'll have to take advantage of the AC.  I will go out and make sure that taco has a cool drink as soon as I finish this.  A good brush and a little fetch wouldn't hurt either of us.  



The Cycle of Life

This week I was having a friendly discussion on the net with a relative and he said that all the right wing kooks came out when Obama was elected and the hype about the budget being out of control is just a tactic to derail his programs.   I, having had the benefit of living through some of the earlier periods in the history of our country told him to go ask his mother about the grand discussions we all had about Guns and Butter over Vietnam.  Probably because of the fact I was way too young, I forgot to remind him about President Eisenhower;s  farewell address where he warned of the hidden power of the ‘civil-military complex’(Read more: http://www.answers.com/topic/dwight-d-eisenhower#ixzz1RcW3Q8Dj

Last night I met a bunch of my friends for a get together at Boss Hogs here in Topeka.  I wish we had not eaten dinner at before we went there. It was so much fun to visit with friends and laugh.  I am sure that i am taking life was too seriously.  having a smile on my face and in my heart makes for a better life.  Now I need to work on a way to bring music back into my life.  I found a bunch of CDs I had put aside a few years ago and find myself singing along with one of the Barbershop CDs.

I am headed out to go see the pond tour.  better run



Solutions and Problems

From time to time, I read people that criticize the current political party for all the problems.  On one hand there seems to be many simple solution problems but the laws of unintended consequences muddle up these solutions.   Lets start with the fact that since the start of the Bush (43) administration, the size of the Military has doubled. In the simple answer, cut the size of the Military and stop all the spending on brush wars in places we really don't care about.  The problem is that what will be the increase in the unemployment level from all the laid off Military and Civilian workers that support that "Vast Military Industrial Complex?" While there might be a transition available, is right now the right time? 

I have a cousin that is an art teacher here in Kansas.  In case you haven't heard, our Conservative Governor has cut spending to the Kansas Arts Council and that movement is spreading into the school districts looking for places to cut their spending.  I understand the need to bring the spending in line with income, but is music and the arts the place to start or end?  As far back as the 50's, I had the benefit of an art teacher and a music teacher.  Both had an impact on my life that I hope even the most hardened person would say was positive.  I sit here listening to fine music as I write this.  Would the sky look less glorious if I had not had the use of color drummed into my mind?  

What is the problem?  I contend that our congress is working on a lot of little problems, including re-election, and have no focus on what the problems are let alone the solutions.  A part of the problem is the failure of the two party system in bringing both sides of the discussion to the table.  When we listen to the liberals, we move away from guns towards butter.  When we listen to the conservatives, we loose the "what if" side of the argument. Congress needs to get with the program and find that happy balance of spending and income we can all live with. 

Is there a solution in a mobilization of the economy like the giant WWII mobilization?  Can we somehow convince the people in the US to start paying off the National Debt held outside the USA?  Is there a vehicle like "Economic War Bonds?"  What ever the answer, someone needs to get busy and find some damn solutions soon or there might not be a future for the next generation.  My parents were a part of what has been called the greatest generation. I wonder what will be the legacy or tag line to the Baby Boomers?



This is a test

This morning I installed the new editing program on this blog and when I posted a picture of barb, it put it at the bottom of the blog.  I am going to try a few things in this post.

The above picture was from some Christmas tree ornaments Barb made.  

This is my dear mother at Mel's Wedding.

What pictures would be complete without a picture of a dog?
Grissy is one sweet puppy

As you can see, the new blog editing program will allow you to pick the place you want your pictures displayed.  Great stuff


Dust Bowl in Phoenix

This picture was added after I published the blog.  The new editing program will truly let you put a picture anywhere even in edit mode.

I have a friend visiting Kansas from Phoenix and several people sent me pictures of the dust storm that hit her home.  I am not old enough to remember the dust storms from the 30's but I do remember the hot dry and dusty summers in the 50's  Several summers there would be hot windy days that would cause dust to leak in and around the windows.  That was long before we could afford storm windows so air of all temperatures leaked in. The kind of funny thing about Phoenix this time of year is they normally have their Monsoon season and rain falls not dust. Barb reminds me all the time not to pay attention to the weather changes from year to year.  It is major shifts in the Climate we need to worry about. 

The old Facebook story about them charging for the use of Facebook surfaced again the other day.  I say I would stop using it if they started charging but I wonder if everyone would. Had it been cheap from the beginning, would people have used it to get messages from their friends?   People pay for the texting feature on their phones.  I don't, but most do.

Barb brought in some Japanese beetles the other day.  They were eating the grape leaves and she put one leaf in the jar.  This morning the leaf was almost completely eaten and Barb has threatened to go out and spray the grape vines while there are any left.  I know the grapes get big and just as they turn the turkeys come out of the woods and eat them.  The neighbors leave for work early and think it is neat to see a flock of hens setting ther on the fence chowing down on the grapes.

I guess I'd better be moving on and get a few things done.




Monarch puzzles.

When the Special K's were here, they got to play in the toy closet and there are many puzzles in there od all kinds. Some are educational like the life cycle of the Monarch Butterfly but some are just pretty pictures. There is a 1,000 piece puzzle that I'm sure came from my mother, and it is birds and flowers of each state and territory. Barb has it spread out on the table upstairs and I can't help but want to work on it every time I walk by. The good news is that I have done about any easy piece i can find and now it is down to random pieces and colors. I'm sure that Barb is working on it also because every time i walk by there is another bird or flower completed. It is entirely possible that this puzzle was one that my grandmother, Erma Fruits worked on. She was always working on one.

One of the reasons I think this is one that came from my mother is there is a border piece missing. Mom had a cat, named Chevy, that loved to carry off pieces when they fell on the floor. You would find this chewed up piece of cardboard under a bed or in a closet. That was also the same place we would find her toys. Ping Pong balls and little things that were easily batted about were her favorite. I know that Chevy Cat was a nice kitty but she got angrier and angrier as she grew older. Some of the anger came from the teasing the kids would do but some was just ill temper from unknown reasons. On one of her visits to the Vet, she threw one of those hissy fits and for the good of all she was put down.

This made room in mom's life for sassy kitty and I hope my brother and sassy have a long life together. Sassy's owner moved into an apartment that didn't allow cats. Dave took her for a while but Sassy didn't like to be in a multiple cat household. My mother was thrilled with sassy and they got along fine for a few years.

Speaking of pets, Ii still have the big black lab, Taco. He and I get to play stick on a regular basis. I also work in a good brushing so long as he can stand it. After about 10 or 15 minutes of stick and the brush, he will wander back to the dog pen to be let back in. He has been really good lately about now wandering off when I get involved in something between throws. There is enough dog hair where I sit on the rock wall, to knit a dog sweater. I have to be pretty careful right now about all the tics. I can't skip the treatments or he gets covered in a day or two. Oh well, live in the woods and you have ticks.

Barb had begun her annual fight with tomato worms. She brings them in and puts them on the back porch. I found out that there is a big red male cardinal that loves them. Shame he won't go out and pick them off the plants. Oh well, gives Barb something else to do besides water the plants. We are right in the first stages of tomato season and man does a BLT go good for lunch.

Better get on with life. Didn't mean to write a book today.



It's Summertime

This morning I noticed that the grass where I mowed last week is yellow and where I didn't get it finished, it is still green. The weather service said we are about an inch behind in moisture to date with somewhere near 16 inches. I'll bet that we could get another two or three inches and things would just turn light green. The one thing doing well right now is the ticks and poison Ivy.

I have several projects that I put off for better weather and now the weather is too much better (hot). Dang I hate it when that happens. I guess I need to do some of those short term projects like pet the dog, spray him for ticks and play stick. A coffee refill and outside I'll go. Bye



Summer is here, Hot as hell

There is a warm front that is dancing north and south across eastern Kansas and it varies from day to day between high 80's and 100. Yesterday we got just enough rain to dampen the ground and keep Barb from watering the garden. Not sure if she will be out there today or not.

Last year the Asian Pears were so prolific that I thought it was going to break the branches of the trees. This year either the bees didn't pollinate or a late frost zapped the flowers. We hardly have any fruit on those trees. The stupid apples are OK but there isn't a cherry out there either. The grapes are doing well and the black berries seem to be OK also. he picture above is the regular pear tree. It seems to be OK also.

We have picked a couple of tomatoes and several cukes. Makes from some good salads and BLT's are one of our favs. In fact, we had bacon on toast for breakfast. barb also sliced some peaches that were yummy.

Better get on with the day.




After a short visit from the Special K's, life here at Rabbit Run just seems so quiet. I even went with Barb on a trip to the Library just to hear some noise. There is a little thunder rollling through the sky this morning bet so far no rain. We could use an inch or two of rain to keep the fires down from the fireworks.

I hope you all have a good and safe 4th of July. There are so many things to do here in Topeka that it is not funny. At the lake alone, there is a car show and fireworks demonstration. Here at Rabbit run there will be grilled burgers and all the accompaniments.



Fun and Games

Barb doing what she loves the best. Showing the girls the garden.

Kendra and Katrina out by the flower garden

We had our friends from Morocco stop by and rest up prior to making a couple of family reunions. I hope they feel as welcome here as they can. Julie and Barbara worked together as teachers and we were there when the girls were born and until they moved. The girls are bright and happy and played all sorts of games. Barb took them for a nature walk and they took pictures of the flora and fauna here at Rabbit Run. One of the girls took the beautiful picture of Barbara above.

When the youngest lived here, she was very quiet and just watched her older sister. I thought she was just shy but I now know she was watching for clues on how to let her personality go when she got older. It is now out in full bloom and there were a years worth of giggles here at Rabbit Run. We hope they have a good time visiting everyone on their trip to Kansas. I hear they will return through Florida and perhaps a chance to visit with Mickey Mouse will fit in their schedule.