http-equiv='refresh'/> Tin TeePee/Log Cabin: January 2017

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

This And That

One of our readers, Jody Rhode, left the following comment:

Son was UPS Driver for years..UPS delivers thousands of packages all over the world everyday. One little mistake on the wording on the label and whoops your package goes to the wrong place. I think it is amazing that you finally got it at all. Just saying...

In this day and age of internet shopping and instant gratification it’s amazing most packages reach their destination on time.  Amazon Prime with its promised two day delivery has stressed the capabilities of shipping companies.  Then add in Wal Mart who ships for free if you purchase $35 or more—Wal Mart disbanded its membership program and is refunding money to those all ready enrolled.  The company also reduced the free shipping limit from $50 to $35.  And then there is Zappos—one of my favorite shoe stores—they ship next day delivery and also have free shipping for returns.  Yep, it’s amazing anything reaches its destination on time!

DSCN3716A walk in the morning desert—“come on Mom, enough with the photo taking!”

DSCN3719A very noisy cactus wren.

During the last month or so Michael has been painting the trim on our house—the house is a non-descript beige/yellow and the new trim paint really helps the appearance.


I know you guys don’t want to read another haircut story so let’s just say this young woman who cut my hair the last two times needs to find a new profession.

Guess who blew in today—Sarge—on his motorcycle which he stores in Nevada flying down from Montana on occasion to enjoy some warmth and sunshine.  He treated us to lunch at Nichols West—my green chile burge was delicious!

And, here’s a sneak peak at the little quilt which has given me more gray hairs--

DSCN3734-001The pattern is called It’s A Dogs Life—the quilt is finally going together as it should—only one more border. 

DSCN3723Oranges—sour little buggers!

DSCN3724The lemon tree is loaded with fruit again.

Saturday, January 28, 2017

Back Home

After our little road trip we are back home just dealing with the mundane daily chores—you know the ones—laundry, dog bathing, etc.  We enjoyed happy hour with the gang this afternoon—Tom and Sandy, Joe and Kathy, Mike minus Cathy—at Larry and Geri’s house/garage. 

Back in Montana the cute little cowgirl is riding her horse.  Lora along with her mom and dad will be heading to Germany soon—it’s sure gonna be quiet around that house when they go!

Image may contain: 1 person, standing, hat and child

Here’s an Amazon story for you.  I ordered from Amazon a new cover for my iPad—it was to be delivered via our two day shipping Prime membership.  The cover didn’t arrive on the designated day and when I would “track” the package I received this message both from Amazon and UPS: we are unable to estimate a delivery day at this time.”  HUH???  So, a week after the package should have been delivered and I was still getting the above message I emailed Amazon.  Explaining the situation I said, “I don’t want you to refund my money, I just want you to explain why I pay $100 per year for Prime that doesn’t work.” 

Almost immediately I received an email—apologies, a refund for the cost of the item ($10) and a $10 gift card.  The person assured me they had contacted the shipping company (UPS) and told them to deliver my item the next day which would have been Wednesday—the iPad cover didn’t come until the next Monday!  I don’t know what UPS was doing with the package—taking it for a ride around the country??

I think an ATV ride is on the agenda for tomorrow—it’s warming up again—thank goodness!

Thursday, January 26, 2017

An Adventure

The cowboy, Emmi and I are off on an adventure—we are actually staying in a hotel and after the night we had—we realize why we drive that big pink motorhome all over the United States!  Our room was so blessed hot last night I could have sworn they were trying to roast us and we even had the heat off!  At some time during the night Michael tried to open a window with no success—his handy wife figured out how to open it this morning. Winking smile

We are out looking at properties and our realtor received a lesson in what not to do with your car fob—don’t leave the fob in the car with the windows rolled up if a certain little black dog has been left in the car!!!  Oops!!  Thanks goodness the realtor who had the listing showed up—he was kind enough to drive Michael and Pam back to our truck.  The two of them went to Pam’s house to retrieve another fob.  And at least it was a really cold day and Emmi wasn’t locked in the car in 90 degree heat!!

It’s a nice hotel and I used Marriott points to pay for our room—free is good—I should receive something for sitting in those aluminum tubes breathing germs!  It’s a suite hotel so we have a little kitchenette.  I had to laugh when I showered this morning—the shower head is so high up on the wall the jolly green giant or my brother Ross could stand under it! 

We will be in this area for another day or two then head back to North Ranch.  

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Ladies Day Out

Early this morning Geri, Sandy, Kathy and I left North Ranch heading for the outlet mall at Anthem just north of Phoenix.  It was a great day of talking, shopping and lunch!  I hit the mother lode—I found jeans which actually fit—amazing!!!  I was so excited I think the sales person thought I had lost my mind—I could just see her thinking, “who gets that excited over jeans???”  Well—someone who intensely dislikes today’s low rise jeans—I want jeans which reach my waist or almost to my waist and they are hard to find!  The selection of jeans in stores gives me an instant headache—super skinny/not so skinny/straight/low rise/super low rise(not going there)/boot cut—and the list goes on and on. 

I found a helpful sales person who pointed me in the right direction and I purchased three pair of Levi 314 jeans—almost to my waist, fitted in the thighs and straight legs—not skinny!  I was almost giddy to find jeans which fit—the cowboy approved when I modeled the jeans for him!

And in the Columbia store I found the cowboy a vest he actually liked—very much—he hasn’t removed it since I came home!

Another rainy/cool day yesterday and very cool/partly sunny today.  Michael did a little carpenter work Monday, installing the floor trim in the kitchen/dining area.  After taking apart the little art quilt on Sunday I managed to get the main blocks and sashing re-done—much, much better! 

Image may contain: 1 person, closeupMr. Brooks

Image may contain: 1 person, horse and outdoorLora with Aunt Katie and Parker the horse.

Sunday, January 22, 2017

Snow On The Arizona Mountains

We received over an inch and a half of rain—the mountains around us received the white stuff!


Saturday evening we had another wonderful gathering of friends—Sandy and Tom, Joe and Kathy, Geri and Larry plus Washington Mike who came down to Arizona for a quick visit.  I cooked a brisket in the oven for most of the day making the house smell divine.  The gang made sure there was not a shortage of food, providing the rest of the fixings. 

Today was another one of those chilly, deary January days and I spent the day fighting that irregular quilt.  Finally gave up and took out every seam—late this afternoon I seemed to be making progress.  The cowboy has been watching football—an unusual event—he’s not a sports fan and I’m glad!  He’s also been painting—trying a new technique--


My dear sister Ann celebrates her birthday on January 22—happy, happy birthday Ann!

Friday, January 20, 2017

CPR Class

Image may contain: sky, mountain, tree, cloud, outdoor and natureUp the Boulder at the former Boulder River Ranch which was owned by our dear friends Jeane and Steve.  Jeane and Steve used to have some wild New Years Eve ice skating parties on that pond—and you can see the Boulder River to the left of the pond.   Photo by Dale Oberly.

On Wednesday Geri, Tom, Sandy and I joined lots of other North Ranchers for a CPR class taught by the Congress Volunteer Fire Department.  It was a different kind of CPR class than the ones I took in my former life—modified to fit our circumstances. 

Thursday Larry and Geri kept the Emmi girl while we made a Costco run—we also enjoyed a great lunch at the Haymaker restaurant in Peoria.  If you can believe it—the desert is getting soggy and our high temperature today was 46 degrees!  It started raining yesterday and has really rained hard most of the afternoon.   I went into Wickenburg this afternoon to check out the new yoga studio opening on Monday—nice young woman who owns the studio—sure wish her success! 

IMG_5772Our grapefruit are ripe and delicious this year.

The North Ranch resident owls are prone to perch on the TV antennas—folks complain their signal changes when the owls take off sending the antenna in another direction.

DSC_4442Took this photo with the camera I purchased from Mike McFall.

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

It Couldn’t Have Happened In A Better Place

North Ranch is about to experience some “winter” weather this week—maybe even a sprinkling of snow!  The ATV gang decided we might better take a ride before it got really cold!  Tuesday even though it was “cold” at 45 degrees we all bundled up in our heavy clothes and took off on the ATVs.  First stop was in Congress at the clinic for me to receive a TB skin test—for my little nursing job.

Geri is our fearless leader usually and we spent the morning crawling up hills and over rocks in a forest of saguaros.  We stopped on top of a steep hill to enjoy lunch with a view—we could see the town of Agilla. 



After lunch we came down off the mountains and started out across a more flat area—and thank goodness!  We went around a corner and it felt as if we had run over a very big rock—except there were no big rocks—Michael looked back about the same time I realized we were tilting and said a few choice words.

IMG_5790Our wheel and tire fell off!!  The tire was on the ground behind the CanAm!  The rig was not driveable—we were at least close to Highway 71 which leads to Congress.  Our friend Mike had just arrived the night before from Washington minus Cathy who stayed behind—the cowboy and Mike made a quick run back to North Ranch retrieving the jeep and trailer.  The rest of the gang waited with me.  We were just dang lucky to be in a spot where we could get the jeep to the CanAm!!

My Mike had the spare parts and repaired the outside rear axle bearing today—the yellow rig is ready to go again!


Today I took a class—more on that experience in the next blog!

Monday, January 16, 2017

Senior Pass

Aging isn’t fun—just ask 94 year old Nat—but there are some perks.  The Safeway store in Wickenburg offers seniors 10% off the first Wednesday of each month—the jury is still out for me regarding the worth of this perk—trying to get through the aisles of the stores with the entire Wickenburg senior population is patience trying to say the least. 

Many restaurants offer discounts for those 55 and older.  But the best perk of all is the National Park Service Senior Pass.  After you have turned 62 you can visit a government office—the cowboy got his Senior Pass at our local USFS office—and pay your $10.  Yep, $10 for LIFE—the pass gives you free entrance to all national parks, monuments and other government operated sites.  The pass also discounts camping in national parks and sites.

It was a great deal—the Senior Pass is still available but sometime in 2017 the cost will go up—$80!  The pass at $80 is for life and is still a good deal if you visit lots of national parks/monuments but dang it—I was looking forward to getting my $10 Senior Pass.  My 62nd birthday isn’t until September—maybe the price won’t go up before then???  The article I read said the National Park Service hoped to have the conversion done by the end of 2017!

Another new hairdresser today—my fourth here in the area.  Michael spent his day painting—as in the artistic type painting and I worked on a quilt.  With the last seam joining all the quilt blocks together I discovered a serious discrepancy—as in over an inch off between the two sets of blocks—UGH!  This art quilt has very irregular sized blocks—well that last one is really irregular!! Not sure what I am going to do!

Saturday, January 14, 2017

Good To Be Home

Airline travel used to be fun—in 1997 when I went to work for Kimberly-Clark, travel was fun.  I quickly built up airline miles and hotel points, usually sat in first class and was greeted by name at the Delta counter—“good morning Ms. Clark, here are your boarding passes.”  Then, as we all know, September 11 happened and air travel was no longer fun. 

In this day and age airline travel is really no fun—the seats and aisles are so small it’s easy to become extremely claustrophobic!  In the good ole days on any flight three hours or longer, food was served and in first class that food was good!  Today you have to pay for icky food!

So—it’s very good to be home.  The cowboy and Emmi were quite happy to see me!  We went into Wickenburg for dinner last night then called it a night—two hour time changes kick my butt and I was exhausted!

Today was “woe is Emmi” day—bath and a really good haircut.  Michael spent the day puttering in the garage and that’s the extent of our Saturday!  Another new recipe in the crockpot—honey lime chicken—will let you know how it turns out!

DSCN3698Sunrise one morning last week before I left for North Carolina.

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Charlotte, North Carolina

About two and a half years ago I went back to work as a nurse consultant for an up and coming company, the TIDI Corporation.  The job was touted as a consultant/independent contractor position—work when I wanted kind of job and the pay was very good.  It all sounded great—it’s exactly what I did for the much bigger corporate giant Kimberly-Clark for twelve years—except TIDI didn’t offer the nurse consultants many assignments.  My last assignment was in March, 2016, almost a year ago.

Fast forward to TIDI acquiring some niche market healthcare companies and there is more potential work.  I am in Charlotte, NC attending a strategy meeting with these young, baby faced gung ho folks who make me feel ancient yet energized!  It’s been a long, long time since I sat in a meeting for an entire day but I survived!  Tonight we were rewarded with an excellent dinner at a downtown Charlotte restaurant—300 East—sweet potato ravoli, potato cakes, onion/horseradish sauce on hanger steak—not your average cowboy fare for sure but oh, so good! 

And I experienced Uber for the first time—trip to the restaurant was frightening—I had to tell the guy to “STOP”—emergency vehicles were coming through the stop light and he was just going to go.  Once the emergency vehicles were through, he then proceeded to run the red light and we were almost hit.  He stopped ON the train tracks and our boss in the back seat said, “we need to MOVE, there is a train coming!!!”  The trip back to the hotel was much less exciting—thank goodness!!

One more day here then I fly home Friday morning to the cowboy and Emmi. 

Sunday, January 8, 2017

Do You Feed Your Dogs

The cowboy was reading something on the internet this morning—something political and said, “you should post that on your blog.”  I said, “nope, my blog is not political!”  When I told him what the topic of tonight’s blog would be he laughed and said, “and you said your blog was not political!”

Of course you feed your dogs—your furkids, your babies.  But how people feed differs greatly!  Some veterinarians will tell you dogs should be fed on a schedule and others will tell you, “just put the food out, they will eat when hungry.”  And all dog owners have an opinion—there is no right or wrong way as long as your dog maintains a healthy weight as far as I’m concerned—this is just how I do it.

Our JazzJazzy girl. 

In my adult life I’ve had five dogs—an obnoxious, mean little dachshund, two 70 pound each Airedales, one male, one female and litter mates, another little schnauzer and then Emmi.  I have always free fed—put the prescribed daily amount of a high quality dog food in their bowls in the morning—and walked off and left them. 

None of my dogs including the dachshund were ever overweight, the two Airedales had separate bowls and they worked out who ate when.  All the dogs including Emmi might eat some in the morning, leave the rest and go back at some point in the day to finish their food.  Emmi is the funniest dog we’ve ever had—she eats when she feels like it which is usually when Michael and I decide to go to bed.  Emmi rarely eats everything in her bowl and she has always weighed the same—a perfect 11 pounds.

Emmi doesn’t wake us in the morning wanting fed—she sleeps late, we usually have to wake her up about 8:30—9:00 to go for a walk.  She doesn’t beg for food unless she hears the word “cheese” as that’s what I wrap her three times a week medication in.  We give her no people food other than the cheese.  My Airedales and the other schnauzer were given people food and it made horrible beggars of them.  After Jazz, our schnauzer died I swore the next pooch would only get dog food. 

So—that’s how I do it—and I’m sure our dog owning friends have an opinion!  In our North Ranch circle of friends, our feeding method is in the minority it seems—most feed on a schedule.

7 weeks old first day homeEmmi at seven weeks.

A little over 5 monthsFive month old Emmi—she had the wildest fur!

Beating up on EmmiJasmine and BoJangles beating up on Emmi in the Bouse desert—they weren’t really beating up on her—just playing.

Finishing up for Jazz2 12weeksJazz started destroying this basket as a puppy and Emmi finished it off!

OK—that was fun—for me—looking back through old photos of our pooches!  All the photos of the dachshund and Airedales are pre-digital and back at home in Montana—I need to get some of those scanned into the computer.

Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Double UGH

Nothing much going on around here—just a whole lot of coughing/hacking/sneezing/kleenex use!  It’s been seven days since this crud attacked me and I can honestly say I’m only marginally better.  The cough is nasty—keeps me awake at night—I have no appetite, a good thing if you are trying to lose weight but it’s one nasty diet!  Michael woke in the middle of the night with what is probably strep throat—don’t know if he finally got one particular germ from my crud or from someone else but he always seems to get the major sore throat. 

Our dear friends Larry and Geri brought lunch today and took little Emmi off for a play date—she went quite happily—these two sick people she is living with haven’t been doing much playing!  A quick walk in the desert is about all we are managing!


We were so sorry to read of the death of blogger Rod Ivers—even though we never met we read each others’ blogs and left frequent comments.  I will never forget Rod’s “Roomba/Biscuit” post.  May he rest in peace with his dear wife Loyce.

Stay healthy friends and family!

Sunday, January 1, 2017

Whitewater Draw

We finally made it to Whitewater Draw—a marshy area located near Elfrida, AZ managed by the Arizona Game and Fish Department.  In Montana during spring and summer we will have one or two pairs of nesting Sandhill Cranes in our fields.  We enjoy seeing these huge birds and hearing their haunting calls.

Whitewater Draw is the winter home for 20,000—30,0000 Sandhill Cranes and we had been told it was quite the sight and sound—well it was an amazing experience!  In late afternoon just before dusk the birds started arriving chattering with each other and finding just the right spot to rest for the night.  We sat out there in the damp chill until almost dark watching large bands fly in.  They were also joined by other smaller birds—yellow headed black birds by the hundreds.




DSC_4371The yellow headed black bird flock



During the night I was up and heard a strange noise—opened the kitchen window and could hear the voices of thousands of cranes—amazing.  Michael said during the night he thought the coyotes were after the birds—he would hear the coyotes howling then a mighty squawking—the brochure states the birds stand in the shallow waters to avoid predators but they might have met up with a coyote who didn’t mind getting his feet wet in order to have supper!

We walked out to the viewing area just before dawn on Saturday morning and it was even more amazing—thousands and thousands of those huge birds—all talking to each other.DSCN3686DSCN3690

New Year’s Eve was very exciting around here—I went to bed at 4:30pm—not am and slept until 2017!  It’s been more of the same all day today—up for a while, back to bed.  Lousy bug!!

Happy New Year to all our readers, friends and family!!