Saturday, February 28, 2015


Remember all the projects I was worried about and trying to get done prior to my surgery?  Well I missed one.  Yes, and it was one that should not have been missed.  I have a piece of siding around a window that is blistering, actually I am pretty sure it's rotten.

It's much worse than it looks here.  It collapses quite a bit to touch.  And it appears that the entire sheet encompasses the entire window.  It couldn't be just one side of it, oh no.

Evidently the widow didn't get caulked well enough and water has done it's work.  When I found it I caulked it up pretty good, but time has done it's work and it's just not going to keep.  Gotta get that done since we seem to have moved into a wetter time this past year.  This house was built using staples, big, long, ugly, nasty staples.  They just don't come out like nails do.  It will be a mess removing the siding.  The foam board underneath will also be a total loss.  I suspect the trim around the window can't be salvaged either.  Just another expense we really don't need right now.  I may even put this off another month or two to get past the financial issues we are having with Kim's job and other surgery expenses.  Not complaining, just thinking out loud so to speak.

A friend offered to help when I was talking about the things I needed to do around here.  He is a handyman so he knows his stuff.  Not a big project, at least I think it's not, but it will make the job go faster and he will catch things I won't know about.  Not to mention just hanging out with a friend.

Happy Trails

Friday, February 27, 2015


Yup, another one.  Not so bad, better than not having one.

Happy Trails

Thursday, February 26, 2015

TBT Dogs

Some old ones of dogs we have had.  Not all, just the ones that I have photos of, they were the most special to me.

Booger, got him when we got married

 He was a Spitz

 Sierra, my sweetheart.  She was an Aussie.

She thought she was people

And then you already know Buster.  He knows he is a dog and it good with that.  Another Aussie.  He is probably the last.

Wednesday, February 25, 2015


With the weather not being conducive to any outside activities we (Kim mostly) have been working on getting all our tax info ready for an appointment with our tax man this Friday.  Kim handles most everything since most of the work is in regard to her business.  It used to be pretty straight forward for us, Turbo Tax handled it all.  The first year she went into business we tried using Turbo Tax and it wasn't any fun at all.  I was pretty overwhelmed.  I know for a fact we missed out on a lot of deductions that we get now that our tax man knows about that just don't come up with Turbo.  Using a professional has been costly but it also has saved us some major headaches not to mention getting deductions we wouldn't have otherwise.  If you have your own business you already know how difficult or challenging tax season is.  Sometimes I think it is intentionally designed to cause major amounts of frustration that would cause you to fore go being in business for yourself.  Nah, they wouldn't do that would they?  The gubmint is here to help and protect us right?

Our tax man is also a friend and we have very similar political outlooks and our appointments get to be pretty interesting.  We share our thoughts and ideas about what is going on in the world more than we talk about our taxes.  We visit way to long and take up a lot of his time.  But at least we confirm with each other we know how to solve the country's problems, if only they would listen.  It will give us a chance also to try out a new eatin' place that I saw was on a Top 10 Texas Bucket List.  It's just around the corner.  I am actually looking forward to going as weird as that may sound, but having been cooped up in the house for a few days will do that.

Stay Warm and...Happy Trails

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Set Back

Early Spring has suffered a set back here in the Texas Hill Country.  We are under a threat of snow and freezing rain with 25-30 mph winds.  It was 32* this morning and has dropped since.  It's supposed to get worse as the day goes on.

We have benefited from Spring like weather off and on for the last couple weeks with plenty of rain thrown in.  That causes a false Spring in these parts.  Plants and trees start sprouting blooms.  The Mountain Laurels in various areas are in full bloom, ours have small buds. 

Our friends Peach trees are in full bloom.

These two types tress won't set blooms again when they get frozen.  We have had a very mild winter this year and it seems Mother Nature wants to give us one last reminder of who's in charge.  I just hope we got Kim's plants covered in time.  It also puts a damper on wanting to get out and plant my garden.  (wasn't going to anyway, but seeing there waiting and with good weather I get the 'want to' pretty bad.)

On another note, this is the Journal Cover I made for Kim's Birthday.   

She has gotten to be quite a note taker at church and was either making notes on the fly leaf of her bible or a small yellow note pad.  The fly leaf will get filled with notes pretty quick and her yellow note pad will get abused and used and lost.  I just thought she needed something more permanent.  I really haven't made much leather for her at all either.  Leather work has been rather slow also so it helps me keep in practice.  It is one of those skills that you have to keep on top of or you lose your edge.  She seemed to like it.  I tried several new techniques that may be something I can use on future items as my skill improve.

Happy Trails

Monday, February 23, 2015

Remembering School

Reading another blog about our education system reminded me of an event during my oldest sons 4th grade term in the local elementary school.  First my son was almost painfully shy, preferring to get a failing grade rather than make an oral presentation in front of the class.  However, I had always been able to get through to him with gentle persuasion.  No, he never needed threatening.  This was a kid that would call us at work when he got home from school to ask if he could have a cookie.  If he couldn't get Mom he would call me.  Who does that?  My point is he was always very obedient.

During one of the report card periods, he brought home a conduct grade that was substandard for him.  That was surprising to us to the point I made an appointment to find out what he was doing so I could get it corrected.  I wasn't going to tolerate a disruptive child.  This appointment included 2 teachers and the principal, each at different times.  I was also going to ask some questions about the work he was doing at home and the quality of it. 

First visit was with the principal.  He wasn't aware of any behavior issues with him, I would need to speak with the teacher that gave that grade, but he was supportive of her regardless.  I then asked about homework, I was never seeing any brought home, ever.  He claimed that they got homework almost every day.  This would be anywhere from 15-30 minutes work per night excluding weekends.  I was pretty shocked with the minimal numbers and related to him that he didn't get ANY.  My son also claimed they were allowed time to work on homework in class, which is why he never had any.  The principal claimed that was not allowed and basically said my son was a liar.  Nothing was resolved they weren't changing anything, they thought "it was more important for the kids to have time to be kids."  Being a kid in school when I grew up was having from 1-2 hours.  High School was even more.  He also claimed so many parents had complained about the homework load being to much, that they had never had anyone complain about not enough.

The first teacher we met with gave glowing reports regarding son #1, which was what I wanted to hear.  I asked about homework, she also claimed she gave it and did not allow it to be done in class.  Why was he not coming home with homework?  No idea. 

The teacher that gave the bad conduct grade was next and was also his 'home room' teacher.  You can probably guess how this went.  She was very defensive.  She claimed the same regarding homework as the others.  Also questioned her about the work I saw, with the poor grammar and misspelling, disjointed thoughts.  Her response was that the 'idea' is what was important not those other things.  What? 

His behavior problem was his attitude, not any misbehavior at all.  Her statement was very telling on how she would read her kids.  "He sits there in his chair in his blue jean jacket slumped down."  Yes, she emphasized the italicized part and the rest also had a disdainful tone.  It was obvious she had the attitude toward him.  She misread his shyness as being unconcerned or not caring even though she rarely if ever had any interaction with him and his grades were above average.  This was about the 2nd six week grading period and she still didn't know this child.

No, I don't think I am one of those parents that defend their child no matter his behavior.  I am old school, and will get my kid corrected first.  And we did talk with him about how people can misjudge you based on appearances.  He got no more bad conduct grades.

Appearances do make a big difference in a first impression.  It was more of a body language issue with her.  We didn't allow our children to dress slovenly, and T-shirts weren't ever allowed until they got to HS and even then they weren't allowed the first week while they were meeting the teacher for the first time.

Yes, I believe our system is broken, not just the educational system but the family system too.  We have allowed ourselves to get complacent and not 'do the work' it takes to keep things right.  I am not picking on teachers, I think parents bear fault in this just as much if not more. 

Apathy is a terrible thing.

Happy Trails

Sunday, February 22, 2015


Yesterday was Kim's birthday, it was also our first grandchild, Dani's birthday.  My oldest son and wife came over Friday to pick up the Gkids and honor Kim early for her birthday.

Kim had to work at the resort Saturday.  That usually wears her out and yesterday was no exception.  I had planned to at least take her out for supper but she even declined that.  OK, now what do I do?  She fell asleep on the couch in the late afternoon.  When she woke up I again asked about going out and she was OK with that.  Our favorite steak place in town was so crowded there were folks standing outside.  Not us, we don't have the patience for anything like that.  So we drove around a bit until she decided where else she would like to go.  Finally settled on a place and all was good.  It was a very subdued birthday for her.  I made her a journal cover she seemed to like.  I will post a photo of it later.

We are so boring.  I assume it's like that for most old married couples.  Sometimes we are willing but the flesh is weak so to speak.  I have been struggling to have anything to post here and don't want to waste folks time with drivel but I had to at least mention the Love of My Life's birthday.

Carry on....and Happy Trails

Friday, February 20, 2015


They are here for a couple days and the weather is good.  No posting until............

Happy Trails

Thursday, February 19, 2015


Kim met the folks at the new resort opportunity Wednesday.  Things went better than we could have hoped for.  They were very nice to her and were very impressed with her overall presentation.  They are very eager for her to get started there.  The biggest thing was they have no issues with her selling her wares, where all the profit comes from.  They were very impressed with the products and thought it would fit in very well.  The details still need to be worked out, but Spring Break is now looking very good.  

I was confident her presentation would go very well.  She is very likable and makes a good impression with people with her cheerful demeanor.  She has a spectacular smile.  I wasn't sure how willing they would be to do business with her since this was a cold call.  She contacted them out or the blue when things at her current resort started going south.

She is not ready to give up everything at the current resort as the more profitable seasons are approaching.  We will just take a wait and see stance with that.  

There will be a time crunch on some days, since she will be at both resorts on Saturdays.  Those will be very looooong days for her.  

Things are very promising, the Man upstairs is looking out for Kim (us).

Happy Trails

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

All Good Things....

...must come to an end.  Kim's resort 'business' has taken a bad turn.  The resort has had huge turnover among the personnel that she deals with.  There has always been some turnover but there were always some holdovers that knew what her business was and how to accommodate her.  There were a few hiccups here and there but nothing that they weren't willing to remedy almost immediately. 

With these changes, they are changing the way she will be able to do business.  They have told her she will no longer be able to sell her wares along side her crafts she does with the guests children.  It will strictly be crafts for the children only.  While she can make a little doing this, the profit always came from the sales of her wares.  This also included some of my leather work.  Without the sales, there will be many many days it costs more to do business there than any profit.  She will stick it out for a while but we are not optimistic.

But, to use another cliché, when one door closes another opens.  She has an appointment this afternoon with another resort to provide similar services.  They seemed very excited about this as they are gearing up with some new programs.  Hopefully this will replace her lost income.  While we don't get rich off of her business, it supplements all the extras that my pension won't cover.  It has paid some bills in the short times, which there have been more of lately than usual.  None of her services cost them anything so it would be a win win.  They seemed to really like that.  One draw back is that it is much farther than we would prefer.

She only does this work once a week except for special occasions, i.e. spring break and conventions.  As good as it's been, there are a lot of times that I wish she was fully retired.  She isn't able to work full time without some serious difficulty physically, so this has been a God send for us.  I hope it goes well at the meeting today, but I would really like her home with me too. 

She might go crazy if she didn't have this outlet.  

Happy Trails.

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Nothing Much

Not a lot going on.  Don't want to waste your time.  Go read some of the folks on the side bar.

Happy Trails

Monday, February 16, 2015

Do I Have Prostate Cancer?

That is a question most men don't even want to consider.  I know I didn't, but I didn't have any reason to think that anyway.  I had NO symptoms that couldn't be attributed to age.  Plus my PSA numbers were low.  Well within the SAFE zone.  The numbers did rise, gradually but were still very low.

If you didn't know already, I started this blog to document events and help me remember things as they occurred.  Why?  Because I got Prostate Cancer.

Even though the doctor told me there were no symptoms to Prostate Cancer, I have found out that isn't necessarily true.  At all.  I actually experienced some pain at one point that could very well have been a reaction to the cancer.  I learned this from a health professional.

Just what are the symptoms of Prostate Cancer?  Go here for the list.  While some of these may be attributed to other things like an infection or old age, it would be very wise to get it checked out if you never have.  I can't stress enough how much of a surprise mine was, even to the doctor.  No symptoms and low numbers does not guarantee you don't have it.  If you have questions about prostate cancer and the surgery, ask someone,  you can ask me also and I will tell you about mine.  But mostly you can read about it in my past posts.  I won't pull any punches, just what happened to me and what I was told, but I won't give medical advice.  Email me and we can keep it private.

Do yourself a favor and get that thing checked out....regularly.
It just may save your life.

Happy Trails

Saturday, February 14, 2015


Not what your probably thinking.

I have been researching a way to produce leather items with the distressed leather look.  I really like that look.  Will be trying out a few techniques.  If I get it right I will have what I want for a possibles bag that I have been considering making for myself.  Mostly to carry around my meds and such.  I have to be careful, I don't want it mistaken for a purse lol.  I could handle any teasing from friends, it's just, well you know.....

I want it to look something like this

Took a couple scraps of leather to test my coloring start off with

This is the first try, some scuffing with sandpaper and then airbrushing with medium brown. 

 Not what I was expecting.  Will scuff this piece with more sandpaper.  I really think I will need to use light brown and then use antique to bring out the highlights.  That should bring out the scuffing more.  Maybe some scuffing after staining is in order.  I will need to add resist prior to the antique.

Still more research is needed.  I think the final solution will be scuffing/distressing after a light coat of stain and then antique. 

These are light brown and red scuffed after stain then with resist and then a coat of antique

Pretty sure the one on top is pretty close to what I want.  The red is for another possible project.  It will be revealed sometime next week after completion.

Never used this type antique before.  Had to order it online since my local supplier doesn't carry it.  I have been wanting to try it for some time.  It will really work well in tooled pieces.  It should make the tooling (stamping) really stand out more.  At least I hope so.

Happy Trails

Friday, February 13, 2015

More Motrin Please

Wednesday, the day I had planned to pick up the garden soil I wanted for my above ground garden.  There were a couple places I had considered to purchase from.  I settled on the one a little closer to the house due to my small truck. 

I think I and going to be pretty happy with what I got.  They mix compost into their garden soil.  It is pretty evident by the pungent odor.  It is also pretty loose and rather fine grained.  14$ for a 1/2 cubic yard, not to bad. 
Tried to use my old wheel barrow.  It's was DOA.  Kim decided it would make a good planter.  Well OK.  Something else I will have to negotiate around with the mower.  We'll see how long it takes for her to actually do anything with it.  Yes dear, I know you have good intentions.

Since the wheel barrow is done for, we used this method.  

 It will sit in this state until the weather gets to the point that any new plants won't get frozen.   

It does seem like an early spring is on it's way.  But, we do get fooled by mother nature every so often.  I hoping for mid-March, yes, after St. Paddy's day.

I am feeling the results of all this 'labor' but it was so much easier than previous times doing similar with the crummy wheel barrow.  I missed posting Thursday, I fell asleep much earlier than usual, so I wasn't even conscious at the time I usually put something together. 

More Motrin please. 

Happy Trails

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Belated Surgery Update

First things first.  Today is my only Grandson's 5 birthday.  Happy Birthday Logan.  Come see Poppy.

It occurs to me that I haven't updated my post surgical status for some time.  No change that is really noticeable.  Incontinence was one of the issues that I was told I would have to deal with.  Anywhere from one week to 2 years was the time frame for that to be resolved.  Everyone is different so there is no way to put an accurate number on how long.  I have been reluctant to even mention this was a problem for me at all.  It is a problem for me.  There has been some improvement over the nearly 2.5 months since surgery.  I could point to the first couple weeks and say there is significant improvement from that time, but since then there is little change at all.  Although some days are better than others.  It has had the effect of some weird humor between Kim and I, or when a close friend asks how I'm doing, I just tell them pretty good, except for peeing on myself and everything.

I do have to work around this with almost everything I do.  From going places, to any strenuous exertion.  Time is a big factor also.  I must have facilities available at any moment so long stays out somewhere or drives can be problematic.  If I am sitting, I have almost no issues.  However, as soon as standing or walking is necessary there is a problem.  When you sit, it shuts everything off, almost normal.  Unfortunately I would be easily embarrassed if there was an accident in a public place.  There are work arounds but nothing is really convenient and public rest rooms for those work arounds really is the worst thing I can think of.  It's not to bad and I'm not complaining, just updating the status of how things are.

Late last week Kim and I were running a few quick errands.  I went to get out of the car at the first stop and I felt a quick sharp pain in my abdomen.  It was located exactly between two of the closest incisions.  Not real bad, it just got my attention a little.  I have had practically zero issues with the surgery/incisions from the time I awoke after the surgery to present.  I wondered what was going on with this latest for a bit and promptly returned to the errand at hand.  Getting back into the car it happened again.  Throughout the rest of our errands it began to happen more and more.  What is going on?  Later that afternoon I was just sore constantly in that area and started feeling around.  I felt a pronounced lump in the area where I felt the first pain.  Hmmmm, what is going on here?  I had Kim feel it.  I told her I was pretty sure there was no infection as I felt fine.  But it was sore to the touch now.  Since it was Friday and the doctors office would be closed soon, I asked her did she think we should give him a call.  I didn't want this thing to gradually worsen all weekend and not be able to contact the doctor.  I didn't want to over react either, which has put me in critical situations before.  One trip to the ER already was enough.  Uncharacteristically, she had no real answer, telling me I was the only one that could decide whether to call or not.  I thought she ALWAYS told me what to do lol.  Yeah, I know she is right, but not really what I was expecting.  I decided it wasn't bad enough to worry about and just deal with whatever happens.  It turned out that it was better by the next day and by Sunday the lump and nearly disappeared.   I am guessing that there must have been some sort of adhesion that probably tore loose and got swollen between the incisions.  There is still a slight lump but I have to really search for it now.  All is good at this point.  I just didn't expect there to be an incision issue this long after surgery.  I will probably forget all about this by the time I have to go for my next follow up in April.

Just don't get in front of me when I am making a run from the car to the house or wherever.  

Happy Trails

Tuesday, February 10, 2015


The weather started clearing and warmed quite a bit Sunday, even though it had started out rather soggy and foggy in the morning.  I even rode with the window down on my truck on the way to church Sunday evening.  They are predicting it will be spring like all week.  I have been anxious to get out and get started prepping the garden.  As it turned out the weather guys were right about Monday.  So I got out there relatively early to get started.

First order was to cut back the black plastic I had put down late last summer.

I used that to kill all the grasses that were in place instead of trying to remove them all by hand.  I just HATE pulling weeds.  It worked pretty well, all I had to do was rake most of it out.

Then I dug some shallow holes where my tomato plants will be located.  

I put them on the north end of the plot so when they get taller they wont' block the sun from whatever else I decide to grow.  But that may not be so good either when it gets really hot and everything starts to die.  It got so hot here early last year that my tomatoes had trouble even setting fruit.  I think a sun shade screen will be added to the garden later in the summer to try to prolong production.

The holes I dug for the tomato plants got some paper cups that will hold the organic fertilizer.  My garden guru assures me this it the way to go.  I know it works in spades for him.  

Covered the holes back up and added a semi-permeable weed barrier.  It won't stop all the grasses from growing up through it but it will be enough to keep my happy.  Did I mention I HATE pulling weeds/grass.

I think Wednesday I will make a trip to pick up the soil I plan to use.  I'm hoping it will have dried out enough that I am not hauling a heavier load caused by all the rain.  I am pretty sure I will have to make two trips.  The second for compost.  Some for the garden and the rest for other places in the yard and various plants that need help.

And it didn't wear me out as bad as I thought it would.  Wednesday will be the real test lol.  Getting old ain't for pansies.

Happy Trails.

Monday, February 9, 2015

Intrusive Questions

Was visiting with a friend at church yesterday.  He is also our tax guy.  Interesting listening to him tell me about the issues he has to face this year.  What with obamacare coming in to full force, it is going to cause much more work for him.  Work he is not liking at all.  One thing he said was that this year would probably be the worst year ever for tax preparers.   The thing that bothered him the most was the invasive nature of the questions he now has to ask since the IRS is enforcing obamacare law now.  He said they were told they were going to learn more about their clients than they ever knew before, just plain intrusive.  Most of it in regard to your health insurance, whether you have it or not.  If you have someone prepare your taxes, be forewarned. 

He also was convinced that the media is doing a poor job of disseminating information in regard to obamacare and how much the fines are for those that haven't obtained insurance.  I don't understand most of that stuff but what he said seemed to me that a lot of folks are going to be shocked at how much they are going to owe.  It isn't the 90$ that everyone keeps talking about. 

Remember, congress had a chance to repeal this crap back when all the newly elected got installed in office.  Maybe when all this hits the fan, people will wake up to what is happening in this country.....Nah, I don't think so either.  We have gone to far and most are just to apathetic to care.  At this point I'm not sure there is anything that will wake us up.

Happy Trails....anyway

Saturday, February 7, 2015


I will be the first to admit it, I don't know much about this blog thing.  I'm sure it's pretty evident to the few readers that come here.  I screw up the timing of posts since blogger allows you to schedule in advance, it will post it on the date and time of your choosing.  My TBT (Throw Back Thursdays) posts have been off by a day the past two weeks.  I just screwed it up somehow, SMH.  Maybe I am just a bit goofy anyway, I have been a day early in what I thought today was all week.  That may be the reason this weeks TBT was off a day.  Well, that's my story and I'm sticking to it.

I won't usually watch the network news media due to there down right misleading stories and now even more lies about themselves.  There is always a lot of discussion in regard to the slanted (left slant) way of reporting and the possible harm it causes.  This is not a new phenomena.  It has been going on for decades.  Want proof?  Go here: Bergheim Follies for an informed opinion.  Also, if you would pay particular attention to the link about Walter Cronkite lying.  It is very informative.  I found that to be very enlightening.  I think it proves that our media distorting the truth (Lying) isn't just a recent phenomena.  That particular event was just at 50 years ago. 

Weather here is still not cooperating.  Can't get much headway on the garden plot.  I did get out in between rain showers and cut the plastic I had down to kill the grass under it.  It seemed to have done a pretty good job. although there was evidence of some live grass or something still there.  I will probably put a weed/grass barrier down prior to the soil I haul in.  I hate weeding so in an effort to prevent some of that from happening I will most likely do that.  Otherwise it will be overgrown with weeds before it would be finished for the season.  Did I tell you I HATE weeding?

Kim's birthday is coming up this month as is mine.  As we have gotten older we have sort of skipped getting gifts/cards for each other.  And not just for birthdays, for most other occasions also.  I have an idea for her this year.  However it will be a chore to keep it unknown from her.  Yes she reads this sometimes.   So, Kim, if you read this, don't ask me no questions and I will tell you no lies.  

However, we did go out and get this

I guess you could say it's an early Valentine's both of us.  Kim got to using it right away on some her creations.  She said she loved it.  It's pretty cool when you wife likes a bench grinder for Valentine's day.

Happy Trails

Friday, February 6, 2015

Clearing Out

Since the rain is preventing me from getting out and making an attempt at getting a garden started, I got a wild hair and started cleaning out a closet in my office.  It's full of stuff I don't see very often so I think weeding it out to make room for another idea is the thing to do.  It has some old photos, genealogy records, little used coats, some hunting gear, an old computer, computer peripherals and various outdated software I just never disposed of. 

The idea I have is to have a small storage closet for some items that don't get used very often but could be a critical piece of equipment.  We have a serious shortage of closet space so this will be a trial to get it right.   

The wife and I have been learning more and more about 'prepping, readiness, self sufficiency' whatever you might want to call it.  We have never in all our years even considered this sort of thing.  Our outlook changed significantly once we got the current occupier of the People's House and he started doing things that caused serious concern. 

First off, the financial markets are very concerning for us.  We have no real stake in that, but we understand what could happen if our economy were to go in the tank.  Also with 'his' leanings toward that religion of nopeace and importing muslim brotherhood members into his administration was another.  The more I learn about them, the less trust I have, aw who am I kidding, I have absolutely NO trust in anything they could say.  I don't want to debate about it, I have my reasons, and I will just keep those to myself.

We decided to start collecting extra things that we would need in the event of something catastrophic.  Yes, we even bought things we never would have before due to our concerns.  I read enough blogs of people that go much farther than we do, but I glean ideas and info from them that I think is prudent.  We don't have much at all, but we could get by for a while.  The one thing I have changed my mind on is a 'bug out bag.'  My thought process evolves with the more I learn.  I had previously never considered such.  We were going to hunker down and keep a low profile.  But, in the event of a fire or other event that destroys our hidey hole, we wouldn't do to well.  So bug out bags are being developed. 

I wish my stores looked like this but we aren't even close.

So I chose the closet in my office to be our emergency closet.  Still quite a bit to do, those that have been doing this may even laugh if you saw it and the contents.  But, it's a start for people that are entirely new to this sort of thing.  I'm sure there are a lot of things we aren't doing right or would be criticized by those that are experts at this.  But, like I said, we aren't any where close to being full bore preppers by any means.  In fact, I had reservations about even putting this out there.  Not very good for OPSEC.  We have discussed things with our sons/family and not surprisingly, they also have some of the same concerns but not on the level we have.  We have plans that include them.
Right now the 'bug out' bags are my main concern.  Developing a list of items that we should consider as necessary is where I'm at.  It is a hair pulling process for me as I add and eliminate various items.  One things for sure, meds that need to go won't last as long as usual as they need refrigeration.  Just another issue to deal with.  This just may make me crazy lol.
Happy Trails

Thursday, February 5, 2015

Latest Books

I just finished this book,  We Were Soldiers Once...And Young
by Col. Hal Moore.

 Hollyweird made it into a movie a few years ago.  Mel Gibson was the star.  It was a pretty decent movie.  I saw it again this year and bought the book, well the digital version anyway.  It takes place in the early stages of our involvement in Vietnam, 1965 to be exact.  It was actually the first really significant battle our troops engaged in with the NVA.  It was also one of the first if not the first assault by Air Mobile forces, the legendary 7th Cav.  Same as Col. G.A. Custer. 
It happened in a place called the Ia Drang Valley.  It's been called the Battle of Pleiku (sp?)  The movie was pretty intense.  The book was much more so.  There is so much confusion with the various companies and platoons of our troops, it gave a certain feel of desperation while reading it.  The movie ends after just a couple days fighting.  But in reading the book we find out there was so much more, even more desperate and bloody that the movie never got to.  I assume they had to limit what they could do in the movie, but I almost feel like they did a disservice to those that were involved in that remaining struggle.  It was no less intense and desperate, it seemed it was more so.  There were certainly more casualties.  It's a pretty good read.  You get the words from quite a few of the soldiers that were involved and also from the opposing NVA commanding officer.  If you like this sort of history, I would recommend it to you.

I read quite a bit about military history, usually try to get it down to the small unit and in the words of those that were there on the ground.  Generally I read WWII, or the War of Northern Aggression, and quite a bit about Special Ops.  This was my first venture into Vietnam, a place where I could have easily ended up.  My Dad talked me out of the Marine Corp, he didn't want me to go there.  I was 18 and just out of high school and had no real direction,  so I was headed into the Marines with a friend I had been running around with.  Anyway, I digress.

I have just started a book, Fix Bayonets, from the Great War (WWI).   

Haven't ever read much about this war.  Don't know a lot about it, so am looking forward to what I can learn about this period in our history.  I'll let you know what I think.  I also read a sample about Eddie Rickenbacker.  That's probably next after this one.

Happy Trails.

Wednesday, February 4, 2015


OK so this is early, not sure how I got this messed up but here it is.

February 9 will be my oldest boy's birthday.  Thought a few of his first years would be appropriate for TBT.

Grandparents checking out the new kid at the hospital.  He was the first for both sets.

First Birthday.  Not many days later he would spend 3 weeks in ICU

First Easter Egg Hunt

Chucking rock in the river, always throwing things.  Actually became a pitcher in HS.

First day home

Happy at Christmas

Happy Trails


Remember my garden?

Yes, it's small I know.  I have visions of this

I expect it will look more like this

I figure it's time to get started on it.  Of course today it's raining.  So I have been doing more research and asking my garden expert friend questions.  He may be getting tired or the questions, he loaned me three books to read LOL.  I did find the organic fertilizer I he suggested and for a price 11$/bag less than any other place.  Woohoo. 

As you can see by the photo, I will be hauling in some soil.  I will haul it myself since it such a small amount.  There isn't any lack of places that I can get it from but they aren't close.  My pick up is small, a Ford Ranger and a step side at that.  I don't want to haul it to far, heavy load + small pick up + high speed highway = don't want to.  I can go back roads and avoid the highways but I may make 2 trips.  One for soil and one for compost.

Anyway, with all the rain we have had, and again today, any soil would be soaking wet.  Wet = heavier load.  Not good for several reasons.  Mainly I don't want to buy a lot of water, that would be present in the soil.  I'll need to wait for a dry period, delaying getting this thing started.  I guess I should read those books while I wait.

I foresee a lot of labor in my future.  Something I have gotten used to avoiding the older I get.  Why am I doing this to myself I keep asking?  I can never give a good answer but I'm still determined to do it anyway.  Yes, I have been accused of being nuts/crazy.  I could come up with some sort of rationalization I'm sure.  One thing I am certain of, this sort of labor will cause results I am not fond of since my surgery.  Things will get squeezed and pushed with that sort of labor and the results...well not having a prostate, something that helps close things off, I'm sure you get the picture.  At least I am at home and not in public lol.   

Happy Trails