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Sunday, August 28, 2016

Five Generations

How many of you can say you knew your great grandparents?  Can any of you remember great, great grandparents?  I can vaguely remember both my great grandmothers but that’s it and Michael’s “greats” were not living when he was born. 

Nat at 94 now has two great, great grandchildren and if he lives long enough those two children will remember him—amazing!  Today we all gathered here at our house to take some photographs.  I teased Katie and Laci, telling them getting all the gang together in our family was like herding cats but we succeeded. 

Barb was kind enough to bring Nat from town and the rest of the gang traveled from Lonn’s on the West Boulder.  Before taking photos we enjoyed a fabulous lunch (even if I do say so myself!)—ribs, grilled pork tenderloin, roasted potatoes, salad with poppy seed dressing and fresh green beans.

Grandpa Lonn and Lora                                   Barb and Brooks

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DSCN3015Five generations—Nat, Michael, Lonn, Katie and Brooks.  Katie’s husband Michael is standing behind Lonn.

DSCN3020-001And another five generations—Nat, Michael, Lonn, Laci and Lora with John standing behind Lonn.

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DSCN3043John is currently at home on leave from Korea with the USAF.  In February this little family will be leaving us heading to Germany and no, this Mimi didn’t get a vote!

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After all that hard work sitting for photos it was dessert time—homemade ice cream—vanilla and chocolate/espresso!  Oh, my—I should have just skipped lunch and went straight to dessert!

It was a fabulous day spent with family—the best!  Life is very good!

Friday, August 26, 2016

He Is Home

And we are so grateful.  Three months and one week after Mom’s husband Chuck suffered a cardiac arrest while visiting Mom’s sister in a hospital emergency room he went home today.  All the doctors told us if Chuck had suffered this episode anywhere but the emergency room he would probably not be with us today.  He received instant treatment and care which is probably why he is alive.  So Chuck—welcome home—we love you! 

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I finished a customer quilt today and began working on another one.  Remember I showed you a photo of a rolling barn door the other day—Michael was building the hardward for such a door for our Arizona home.  Well, not only did he build the hardware, he built the door and it looks great!  He is one talented man!

We try to take an evening walk every day—exercise for us and the pooch.  Thursday evening we walked a little later than usual and sunset was stunning!

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Life is good!

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Fires Everywhere

DSCN2952Even though the smoke we were experiencing has disappeared it could certainly appear again!  The south entrance to Yellowstone Park is closed for a huge fire, there is a 22,000 acre fire in the northwest corner of Montana at Thompson Falls and there are many, many more fires in the west.  In 2006 when we were evacuated twice for approaching forest fires the fire people kept saying, “we need a fire stopping weather event.”  Well, Montana again needs a “fire stopping weather event.”

We took a quick trip to town this afternoon—Emmi needed her rabies vaccine and we needed to have a title notarized.  The cowboy was cooperative, letting me stop at the quilt shop, too!Smile

Back home Michael finished putting the CanAm back together.  We love our CanAm but it has one major problem for this menopausal woman—because the engine is in the middle between the seats a huge amount of heat is generated.  On colder days it’s a wonderful thing, on 85 degree days it’s miserable!  While in an Idaho campground our neighbor on one side was an ATVer with two                 4-wheelers on the back of his truck flatbed.  All our guys gathered around this guy’s truck as guys do—to talk.Smile

Somehow the talk turned to the CanAm heat issue.  This gentleman said the shop where he worked had solved that problem by installing a 12volt fan in front of the engine to blow cool air through and hot air out of the engine compartment.  He said it worked like a charm—so that’s what the cowboy has been doing—next hot day we will try out his work!

Seems as if this latest quilt is taking me a long, long time to finish—I guess I should be more patient, it is custom quilting!

Emmi was getting shaggy so much to her dismay it was bath and haircut time yesterday—much better!

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Life is good!

Monday, August 22, 2016

Here Comes The Smoke

We’ve been lucky so far this summer having had little forest fire smoke.  In years past the smoke has made us miserable and today the smoke arrived.  There are fires burning in Montana, Idaho and Wyoming plus all the ones in California—we are just dang lucky the smoke hasn’t been here all summer!  Michael woke with a sore throat this morning and when I went to the kitchen to start coffee I could see why—we were sitting in a haze of smoke.  There are air quality alerts all over the state and the air smells of smoke—UGH.  If the air quality doesn’t improve we may have to find somewhere else to be!

DSCN2937Our previous schnauzer Jazz learned cattle guard walking all on her own—we had to teach Emmi but she now has it down pat!

DSCN2945Smoke does make for pretty sunsets!

barn doorsIn our Arizona home the master bathroom has a design flaw—the door opens into the bathroom and you must step inside and shut the door before getting to the toilet—definite design flaw!  I love the sliding barn door look but geez the hardware is pricey!  So—cowboy to the rescue!  He is using his lathe to create the hardware for our door—isn’t he smart!

I’ve been working on a quilt of my own and making progress—I should be able to finish quilting it tomorrow.  I have two customer quilts waiting!

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Saturday, August 20, 2016

Much Need Rain And Other

Thursday night it rained most of the night into Friday morning giving us one and a half inches of much needed rain.  Our temperatures went from the high 80’s to the high 60’s on Friday.  This morning it was a chilly 37 degrees here on August 20th!  Today has been a beautiful, sunny, cool one!

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Just after Michael and I married a mining company started operations about nine miles up the road from us.  The neighborhood fought the mining company but of course couldn’t stop the process.  The neighborhood grass roots movement did force the mine to establish what is referred to as the “good neighbor agreement,” a legal document.  In the document the mine agrees to certain policies:  dust control on the gravel road, bussing of non-management personnel to control traffic, limiting semi/heavy duty type traffic to daylight hours, etc. 

As a result of this agreement we have one of the best maintained gravel roads in Montana!!  Our road is graded more often and the dust suppressant is applied frequently.  But oh my!! does that stuff ever make a mess on your vehicles!  The mine usually gives us a heads up when the magnesium chloride is scheduled for application and we stay home until it dries.  Rain makes the mixture very, very sticky!

The magnesium chloride was applied last Tuesday and we had a birthday party to attend—so we took the jeep as it’s our smallest rig to have to wash!  No other plans were in the works until the Can-Am dealer called saying our ATV was repaired.  So, off we went to Billings again Friday morning after the rain—geez, that’s been a long explanation for why Michael has spent a lot of time washing vehicles lately!! Smile

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Some beautiful sunsets lately!

Thursday, August 18, 2016

A Birthday Party (Family Photo Overload)

When one works for what we refer to around here as “the rich and famous” your time is not your own.  Lora’s birthday is in early August but the ranch where the rest of our family are employeed was packed with owner/guests at that time.  So, Laci and John (who is home on leave from Korea) chose Tuesday afternoon to celebrate Ms. Lora’s second birthday.  Lots of friends and family, lots of happy noise and lots of food.

DSCN2858The star attraction practicing a little yoga???

DSCN2860-001Two of the grandpa’s.

DSCN2863Lora and Colt

DSCN2882Cold water or dancing?? 

Aunt Katie, cousin Brooks and one of the chefs, Michael.

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DSCN2861Kristen, our youngest granddaughter.

DSCN2909A smiley baby Brooks and Brooks with his Dad, Michael.

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DSCN2893Michael’s daughter Shannen with the fork in her mouth (I could get into trouble for that one), Mark, Michael and Kristen, our youngest granddaughter. 

A great party!

Wednesday we took a trip to Billings.  Haircut time for me and finally it was time for the Can-Am to have the safety recall done.  If you remember—around the end of June the Can-Am lost all steering while I was driving in the hayfield—we were just glad it happened on fairly flat ground and not some cliff in Moab!!  Seems it’s a problem with all Can-Am Commander side by sides manufactured in the years 2011-2013.

 IMG_0959One way to get a rig off the trailer, especially one that doesn’t steer!  When we loaded the CanAm at home, Michael drove it onto the trailer while I pushed the wheels in the right direction—nerve wracking! 

Today Michael helped me can 18 pints and 3 half pints of chokecherry syrup—YUM!  May have to have pancakes for breakfast tomorrow to sample the syrup!

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Louisiana Flooding

Janet S. left this comment on a previous blog, “have you heard from Rollie & Gina are they o.k. with all the flooding in Louisiana?”  Gina and Rollie are currently in Houston but still have many family and friends affected by the horrific flooding in Denham Springs, Louisiana.  Gina and Rollie’s home is miraculously not flooded.  Their daughter Ashley and her husband Parker recently moved to Arkansas near where my family is located.  Ashley has accepted a position as a physician in Hot Springs, Arkansas and Parker is completing his residency at a nearby hospital.  Ashley appeared on an Arkansas TV station tonight appealing for donations and help for Denham Springs.  In spite of the fact Ashley has been studying hard for her internal medicine boards which she will sit for on Friday—her heart is in Louisiana.  She and her family will travel to Louisiana this coming weekend to take the donations Arkansas collects.  There is also a Facebook page, Arkansas Is Coming.  Rollie, Gina, Ashley and Parker will appreciate any and all help given to the people of Denham Springs, Louisiana.

If you haven’t seen the flooding on the news, here is a video our friend Kerri shared on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/WeatherNation/videos/10154470076154874/