24 August …


Family has been here for nearly two weeks. Busy times. 

At the radio club meeting last week, we all went, even the young one who knows how to use his parents’ radios as a “third party”.

Interestingly, he sounds older and more mature on the radio than he does otherwise.

Thursday we all went to Sacramento. Mark (the younger son) had an interview so he dropped the rest of us off at the Railroad Museum. He was interviewing for work since he plans to relocate back here within a year or so.




At the museum, George and I took it easy, but Kamille was on the go full time keeping an eye on Paul. DSCN0770Four-year-olds love trains.

Mark was back in time to share lunch and an afternoon session in the museum. Then we headed north.

DSCN0775We were able to meet John (the older son) and his partner, Michael, at a great restaurant in Marysville for dinner.  It was a comfortable meal what with sharing stories and laughs … and some of the best Chinese food I’ve had in a long time. If you like Chinese, real Chinese, and are in the Marysville area … go to the20160818 181355 8 copy

The area is a bit rundown, but the food, the atmosphere, and the service are excellent.

We got home late.  The chickens were all in and on the roosts, but AC was alert and waiting for his evening meal.


Friday was a quiet day.  Everyone was pooped and the weather was still hot.

Saturday was a different story.  DSCN0849


We made tamales.  


We did make our monthly trip to the retinologist on monday. Weather was warm, but not as hot as it had been.

George and I had decided fish and chips sounded good so we went to McGrath’s Fish House for dinner.DSCN0998

(Why are people obsessed with posting pictures of meals and food?)

While we were in Medford, we went by the restaurant supply store and got thirty pounds of ribs which Mark spent yesterday smoking. He will finish them up today and we will feast on smoked bar-b-que ribs friday. In addition, there will be ribs to share with neighbors at dinners and meals for George and I all winter. The freezers in the 7-11 are stuffed and the kitchen smells delicious.


I forgot to tell you that at the radio meeting we decided that if there aren’t more participants at the Run for the Arts than there were last year, we are going to decline to spend time with that event.  Last year our operators outnumbered the runners in the half marathon, and the 5k goes through town where there is little chance of getting lost. We’ll know about that event as soon a they have their planning meeting.

We will be doing the other two events … the Biketoberfest in McCloud and the Headwaters marathon. Then we will be done for this year.


I just saw an article about the solar eclipse next August.  The radio club had done an event a couple of years ago when we were in the path of a solar eclipse.  So we will be discussing the possibility of doing another.  And this coming one is to be closer to full when seen from this area.  That is something to anticipate.


Only two more days with the family.  They leave friday evening. Of course I am looking forward to when they relocate and we will see them at least once a month.

Having both sons and their families near has always been a dream.   


DSCN0604The Mountain is looking a bit ragged, but still beautiful.


Read  the following sentence out loud     


Did you read it as “opportunity is nowhere”

or as “opportunity is now here”    ???


So … ’til next week …





17 August …


The New York crew arrived just before midnight last saturday. Everyone went right to bed.

Mexican Fiesta Sundays are a tradition with the NY family. So we are doing it here as well. The day after they arrived we did huevos rancheros for breakfast.FiestaThen chicken tacos, California cheese and chorizo enchiladas, tomatillo ensalada, Oaxaca black beans and lime dessert with whipped topping. The rest of the day and evening they were on their own looking for leftovers.

I’m already planning next sunday’s menu. I can only hope it will be cooler. Last sunday was the hottest day we’ve had this year.

The heat isn’t bothering the New York folks too much. They had been having heat … but with humidity. At least here the heat is dry.

Paul and AC


Monday was a further recovery day.


Paul went out to meet AC.


Tuesday was still pretty warm (read hot), so it too was a quiet day.

Tonight is the radio club meeting.  Since all four adults are hams (AB6UE, AB2LI, KD6WZC, and KD2JLY), we’ll be going to the meeting after spending some time in the city park. Maybe it will be cooler there.


I recently made contact with another distant genealogical cousin. My grandmother was her great-grandfather’s sister … so her grandmother was my father’s cousin. I keep finding these folks whose great-grandparents were my cousins or some such.  Talk about feeling old …

But it is fun to make connections.


Didn’t think I’d be watching the Olympics … but I had been a swimmer when I was young and the possibilities caught me. I’m glad I got to see some of those races.

And from there I got caught by the gymnasts.

A cousin is a tract aficinado so then I found myself there. We’ve been watching on NBC. All that time spent and I’m not really a “sports” person.

Oh well …




The hummers are here is full force.  So far, I’ve been able to get a picture of only two at a time even though there are times when seven or eight are active overhead.



Last year, when he was here, Paul got really involved with the clock at the foot of the stairs.  It has always been a favorite with his siblings. It chimes every fifteen minutes.  George and I don’t hear it unless we are listening for it.  But for the first couple of days he is here, Paul hears it every fifteen minutes. 

On the Stairs


Sometimes he sits on the bottom step … waiting.




Had a bit of a problem with the water system tuesday. The pump stopped pumping.  Gave me a bit of a scare.  At the moment we are without an extra pump.  That will be remedied SOON so we don’t get caught.

The problem, rather than being a bad pump, was a single connection.  George got it fixed quickly.

Then, a couple of hours later, it happened again. Again fixed easily and quickly.

Third time it happened, I was getting a bit concerned (again) and also a bit upset that the fixes weren’t lasting.  But that time it got really fixed.  I don’t know electricity and its ins and outs, but I am told wires got scraped, re-twisted, and sealed. All has been well ever since.

I still don’t know why it came undone repeatedly. Oh well …


Today will be a busy day, so I’m getting this done early. The sun isn’t really up yet.17 August 2016

And that’s it for now …


Those who were seen dancing were thought to be insane by those who could not hear the music.”      –Friedrich Nietzsche



So …’til next week …




10 August …


Found this and thought it was a good fit … particularly today …

“Welcome to my blog. Straight jackets are to the left.  Meds are to the right.  And keep your hands off my crayons.”


Now … let’s see who or what I can blame.

The initial indicating the day on the supplement box isn’t readable.

The calendar is so cluttered I couldn’t see the blog reminder.

George didn’t remind me.

BakingI was focused on making breakfast bread and baking cookies.

I need to get the shopping list ready so there is food in the house for the company arriving this weekend.

The sun is coming up later.

They were playing the Pastoral on Sirius.

The sand cranes in the meadow were flying and calling.

That’s all I can think of right now. Just don’t blame me …

Onward !!!


The radio event last saturday was worth the time.

Tech SwapGeorge was able to transfer ownership of three pieces of equipment to others who will enjoy it,

Conversationand I enjoyed the conversations (those which weren’t too technical) and the people. 

The food was good and plentiful … two salads (one Israeli and one tortellini), cocktail sized pigs in blankets, cheese spinach pastry rolls, chips and dips, bar-b-que beef, and garlic bread). 

We gained two new hams to help work on events.

The weather was just right.

A good day.

But there may be trouble ahead for the club. It turns out three events, for which we have in the past done communications, have scheduled their events one right after another … the last two saturdays in September and the first saturday in October.

There would seem to be an interesting discussion ahead at the next club meeting and some hard decisions to be made.


The plans for the New York family visit morphed suddenly. They will be flying and renting a car rather than driving. Time restrictions caused the change. It works for us because we’ll have them here for a full two weeks rather than fewer days because they would sightsee had they driven.  Nice.

They will arrive the 13th.


Between the 1st and the 7th I was able to be at home all day just once.  I’ve got to plan better.

And plans for next friday changed as well.  We won’t be going to the fair this year. Other obligations have gotten in the way. I am looking forward to hearing what happens at the TEC booth. Getting the County to give the TEC working money was my “baby” and watching where that program is going is a bit possessive.

In addition, I will sort of miss the Indian tacos the Karuk make. Maybe I will try to do some fry bread outdoors and make our own while the New Yorkers are here.


I found some lovely material at WalMart last week and am in the process of making a couple of new tablecloths if I can remember how to seam the material to fit my table. It takes a bit more concentration than the last time I did this.  The “essential” tremor makes it less settled.  But they are turning out well.


10 August 2016Weather has been a bit cooler (or rather a “tad” cooler as our new tv weather person says), but they tell us it will top out over 100° again in a few days. Got to get as much baking as possible done as soon as possible.


… and finally …


If you never admit that you are wrong, you are saying that you are no smarter now than you used to be.


So … It was my memory glitch that made this week’s blog late. Sorry.


… ’til next week …

4 August …


Last friday I received a Jury summons. I reported for the jury cattle call tuesday after noon. The temperature was in the 90s but it was cool in the courthouse.  There were about 75 of us in that group.  There had been a similar group in the morning. We sat through the explanations (civil vs criminal cases, duties of jurors, duties of lawyers and the judge, etc.) and the beginnings of questioning. At 1630 we were sent home and told to be back in the courtroom at 0900 wednesday. That’s why there was no blog yesterday.

Wednesday was all day in the jury selection process.  It is a boring affair, but you need to pay attention all the time because you might be called next and knowing what has been asked and said could be very useful. It was 1625 when they finally had their twelve jurors and three alternates.

I did have some interesting conversations during the day and a half.

One with a man who works for the railroad as a radio repeater repairman and who obviously has Graves disease (his eye balls seemed to be completely out in front of his bone structure).  He was a joker, making jokes about everything and everyone. As we left the courtroom, he wanted a fist bump.

Another was a woman who currently works as a back office nurse (RN) for a doctor I know and who said she remembered me from her shift as a student in the Emergency Department about 20 years ago.  She was in the first upgrade class at COS of nurses moving from Licensed Vocational Nurse to Registered Nurse. She had some interesting things to say about the nursing instructors at that time.  She was excused from the call because her absence left the office with no back office coverage.

There was a woman who is the manager of a bank in Etna and who desperately wanted to be chosen for the jury because she had been unable to take a vacation and would like the time “off”.

There was a scruffy-looking man who was hoping to be called to questioning because he is involved in a lawsuit against the Sheriff’s Office and another against one of the Superior Court judges and would have liked the chance to sound-off.

And there was a young man who was so far out (hair braided in random direction, not re-done recently corn rows, with acne, but driving an obviously expensive sports car) from whom people were moving away as far as possible. I sat down next to him after lunch yesterday and asked him a question about my emergency cell phone.  He was soft-spoken, polite, and seemed pleased to have been asked.  If I’d thought of it yesterday, I’d have asked for a ride in his impressive wheels.

And there was a man who when called to questioning opened his identification with “I wouldn’t believe anything a Sheriff or other law enforcement officer said.”  He’d been in the jury pool with me two years ago and said the exact same thing.

The case was a criminal one. The defendant is charged with imprisonment, assault with a deadly weapon, and assault with a threat to kill. The weapons involved are claimed to have been a long knife, a fireplace poker, and a piece of fire wood. Might have been interesting, but this is a busy time of year so I’m not sorry I wasn’t chosen.

And that’s the explanation of why this week’s blog is a day late.

A cousin noted that in her county they take you off the list of possible jurors when you turn seventy. Oh well … not in this county.

It has been years since George got a summons.  I get one every other year. We haven’t been able to come to any logical reason why.


It has been HOT !!!

4 August 2016

This morning the sun through the trees is bright, but it will be a cooler day.

It has been over 100° here in the past, and I didn’t enjoy it then either. I realize this is not the only place dealing with this situation.  However, it is the place where I am.

Sleeping without any cover at all helps.  I was still sweating most of the nights until last night.

As a result of having my nose frost-bitten and having had a heat stroke (not at the same time … one in Mt Shasta thirty-some years ago and the other years earlier in Gila Bend, Arizona), my comfort zone is between 55° and 80-85°.

So I try to get an early start on each day during summer weather, “cook” as little as possible, and just veg.

In addition, the days are noticeably shorter in just the month since solstice. I can count on the ladies and the pullets being in by 2030 instead of closer to 2100, and I let them out a bit after 0700. Equinox is about 60 days away.


Canning report … in spite of the heat …

5 pints of Royal Ann cherries with thyme …  6 half pints of corn relish …  11 pints of apricot jam …  8 pints of peach jam …  2 pints of peach-melba jam …  and 2 quart bags of frozen peach pie/cobbler fixin’s

Winter is going to be delicious.


The Siskiyou Golden (County) Fair will be next week.  Mark and at least part of his crew from New York will most likely be here. I had agreed to work the Tobacco Education Council booth for four hours on friday.  I am no longer on the Board, but they needed volunteers to help with the facial morphing booth.

I will tell you about the fair and the TEC experience in a couple of weeks..


We started this week with a Castle Crags bicycle event follow-up meeting last monday.

Good event. 

Good follow-up meeting.

They really appreciate us.

They noted that they cleared $17,000 this year even with the bad weather and resulting low registration. That’ll buy a lot of books for kids and fund a good scholarship and who knows what else.



AC 4 August 2016


Cat report …

AC, the little black cat, is always hungry (or at least always wants to eat when I go out), always has a round tummy, and isn’t growing as much as I think he should.



This morning I need to do some shopping.  There is to be a radio club swap meet and potluck on saturday.  The swap meet will be George’s event.  I’ll take a big salad and some fresh challah and just sit around and watch (or take a book and read).


Found an interesting Bible quote last week when I was researching Abigail, one of David’s wives. It made me thing of this election.

Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves.             Philippians 2:3-4


So … ’til next week …


27 July …

 John - July 2016



Well … my oldest child has turned sixty.


George and I made our monthly trip north while John was here. He drove.  It was interesting and welcome having a chauffeur. Weather was getting hot, so we didn’t dally and were home and napping by 1500.  A thoroughly good day for us.

When the “boys” were at home, they each got to choose dinner for their birthday.  John’s choice this year (as it had often been) was for ribs cooked my style, potato salad the way his father makes it, and Grandma Tyler’s lemon pie. I added warmed baguette with butter, roasted corn on the cob, and chunked tomato on romaine. It was good and we were all so busy eating and talking there are no pictures.  Oops …

27 July 2016He and Michael H. left this morning about 0800. It is supposed to be HOT everywhere today and they wanted to get home to Marysville asap.


This trip, John brought peaches and cherries and apricots and corn with him. I’ll be making jam and canning and freezing the rest of this week

This edition of the blog may be a bit short because I need to get at all that before the house gets too warm.

I’ll let you know how it turns out..


At the radio club meeting last week, some decisions were made (1. any decision to work an event more than 30 travel miles from Mt Shasta will be an individual choice, and 2. the club will purchase good quality orange communication vests with reflective stripes identifying the wearer as a member of the Mt Shasta Amateur Radio Club). In addition, plans were set for the upcoming potluck and swap meet. A short and not really exciting meeting.

Those are good.


A couple of things about recent events has made me think about perceptions. I have realized that in addition to seeing friends as they are, I also see them as they were.  That may be because in the mirror I see myself as I am while at the same time, in my mind’s eye, I see myself as I was in my prime.

Although it pains them, my children will always, in one way, be children to me because they come with so many great memories.


The pullets are getting big.  Only another six weeks or so and they will be laying.

This morning, AC displayed a new trick.  He knows he doesn’t eat in the morning until the ladies are taken care of and are out in their yard, eating.  So when I open the coop door to let the ladies out, AC oversees.  This morning the rock came out and instantly went to foraging.  But the red stepped out the door and just stopped. Right away, AC reached out and slapped her on the leg as if to say “Get with the program. I’m hungry.”



He is still not too big and watching him is a hoot.


Today, when I went out, he was nearly as far toward the house as the pullet house.  He is exploring more and further afield.  I give it about three weeks until he joins the panthers out front in the morning.


One morning last week, George greeted me as I came downstairs with “Good morning to you …” and I was instantly five-years-old again starting the day in kindergarten with a teacher we called Miss Sunshine and we were all singing …

        “Good morning to you.

        “Good morning to you.

        “We’re all in our places with sunshiny faces.

        “So this is the way we welcome each day.”

Memory of the past is still good.  Isn’t that a sign of getting old?


I did another session at the Family History Center last week. The only client was a woman whose father (with the interesting given name of Ostap) didn’t talk about his youth but who, she had learned, became an orphan during WW II and came of age in United Nations Relief and Rehabilitation Camps in Germany before coming to the US in 1950.

I didn’t do much specific research for her, but I had a blast tracking down leads for her to follow on her own.

An interesting aside is that the surnames on both sides hinted at Jewish origin, but the client reacted forcefully to that idea at first.  By the time we had to close the center, she was seemingly ready to track down that aspect for possible leads. I think the turning point came when we started imagining what had happened when (according to a conversation her father had, just days before he died, with her older brother) Ostap came home from school one day to an empty house and neighbors, whom he had know all his life, telling him no one had lived there for several months.

It is an intriguing tale and I sort of wish I had time and permission to get involved.  However, I don’t have the time and we do research only when specifically asked.

Oh well … maybe she’ll come back to the Center and I’ll learn a bit more.

The writer in me says that with a bit of imaginative guessing it might make a good book.


Have you ever read Kurt Vonnegut? He is well worth your time.

” … for heaven’s sake … Sing in the shower. Dance to the radio. Tell stories. Write a poem to a friend, even a lousy poem. Do it as well as you possibly can. You will get an enormous reward. You will have created something.”

… Kurt Vonnegut,


So … ’til next week …

20 July …


We are not having a large family of deer in the yards this year compared to years past.  I’ve seen only six or seven at one time.  We used to regularly see a couple dozen grazing together.  I can only guess it is due to weather change since we don’t have more predators in the area.

Doe and Fawn


This year there is only one doe who regularly visits with her fawn.


Last thursday she was in the backyard and I got a surprise. She was joined by a forked horn male.  My guess is they are siblings.

It will be interesting watching them this summer.


Side thought following the visit last week with Merna … 

We got onto the subject of books (wonder how that happened). In comparing what we had read recently and were currently reading we found we both included histories and mysteries in our lists.

I guess it is true that genealogists are genealogists partly because they are mystery fans. We love tracking down lost ancestors and revealing family skeletons … then putting what we find into a historical context pleases us.

Mysteries and histories …


Smoke Tree


The smoke tree is in full bloom.  I remember when my close friend Elaine and I bought a pair.  I wonder hoe hers is doing since she moved and then died.



Things hit a bump with AC.

Sunday evening he wasn’t interested in helping round-up the Ladies and didn’t want to eat. Monday morning he wasn’t watching for me and still wasn’t interested in eating. He was subdued and seemed to want only to sit in the sun and be stroked. I began to worry that he was ill. He was still purring however.

Monday evening, back to normal … waiting for me, running to meet me, demanding the hens get in their house, and racing to his feeding area.

All is well.


An acquaintance had a bumper crop of red onions this year (he is at 3,700′ instead of 4,200′ like we are) and offered the extras to neighbors.  I went over monday morning and came home with some of the most gorgeous red onions I’ve seen (and they were really fresh – I watched them pulled from the earth).



Sliced OnionsI spent the entire morning tuesday slicing …

Onion topsand chopping greens …

Chopped Onionsand prepping for freezer packets and relish and pickles (are your eyes watering yet?).

I ended with 7 packs of chopped onion for sauces and stews, 2 packs of sliced green tops for broth-making, the equivalent of 2 pints of red onion relish for use with winter meats, and who knows how many pints of pickled red onions (I’ll be doing the pickling later this morning) plus the fresh slices I am using on salads.

I’m a bit tired of red onions right now but know they will be good later in the year when they cost too much and are probably not available locally.

(Sorry for the bad focus)


John arrives next sunday and will be here until thursday … celebrating his birthday. Will report next week.


Weather continues to confound … cool and damp one day, warmer but still damp the next.

20 July 2016Today is clear, drier, and a bit warmer.  The Shasta daisies are still blooming.  I got their start from friends who are now gone so when I see them I am reminded of Mary and Carmen Mazzei.  Her father was a bootlegger during prohibition and Carmen drank his red wine out of a pint jar and called us “Cousin” (seemingly an honorific used by local Italians). We were able to hear Carmen for years after he died because Mary left his message on her telephone answering machine.

They were good folks.


This is for anyone who has ever, under any circumstances, sung “We Shall Overcome” ..



Finally, as a pundit said … 

Headlines may grab attention but you have to dig deeper to discover the whole story. Once newly found information has settled into your psyche, you’ll be able to move forward on more certain ground


So … ’til next week …





13 July …


Well, our guest Liz was able to get away from us last wednesday evening. Her family came to pick her up …Liz's family and I got to make friends with her grandson, Dezmond.  He is six … a great kid.  I was so happy he and I meshed well.  He reminded me of when my grandchildren were that age and spent the entire summer with us.  I really miss those days.

As for Liz’s adventures while she was here, she wrote …

“I’ve done plenty of TELLING about my trip. What have I told people about?  The race activities (Liz acted as communication recorder for me when I was Net Control during the 4th run/walk), the sales booths that took me back 40+ years, your solar house, how you and George live, our recollections of our time together 62 years ago,Liz at Rest your back patio, and the wonderful visit we all had when Michelle’s family arrived at Cold Comfort Farm. Dezmond and you – the kitten, the piece of obsidian, the chickens, the pine cone. The various plants you pointed out to Michele.

“My family considered their visit with you another of the highlights of their trip. It is so wonderful that I could share THEM with you, and YOU with them!”

George and I feel it was a wonderful (and too short) time together.  I will always value the time we spent talking and just being together. Thank you, Liz.


The little black cat (AC), who lives with the Lady hens, had a close call last week. As I went out to do my morning chores, he came running out of the chicken yard to meet me. I hadn’t noticed the doe in the area. But the doe saw the kitten and took off, hitting him with her hoof as she went by.  Deer, especially does, can be dangerous … their hooves are sharp. Of course, as she moved I saw her, and out of the corner of my eye I also saw movement in the grass on the other side of us.  Both AC and I were between the doe and her fawn.  Wrong place to be.

The doe stopped and turned. I was afraid she would go after AC, and he is so little.  I yelled at the doe, got her attention, and I guess she decided I was too big to challenge.  But AC and I were still between her and the movement in the grass. So I scooped him up, rushed into the chicken yard and slammed the gate behind us.

Poor kitten was shaking but apparently not hurt by the hoof.

I never did see the fawn, but the doe settled, moved over that way, and went back to eating.

By the time I was finished in the chicken yard/garden area and was ready to give AC his breakfast, the doe had moved on.

Later in the day, when I next saw AC, he was still subdued and a bit clingy which was unusual for him.


The next morning all was back to normal.

Aaaahhhhhh … adventures in the wild at Cold Comfort Farm.



Last thursday was a genealogy day. It didn’t turn out as I expected. The day had started out as a wash-out day for me.  I hadn’t really wanted to go into town, but felt I had to since there was a bill which needed paying and I’d said I’d be at the Family History Center. I thought there was a chance someone would come in with an interesting problem and I’d be snapped out of whatever.

It didn’t happen.

No one else showed up.

I sat in the parking lot, listening to the radio and reading the newspaper which I’d picked up on the way into town, for a full thirty minutes waiting for another volunteer (one with a key) to arrive.  No one.  So I went home.

Evidently something happened and they decided to cancel the Center hours and no one told me. This has happened before … a couple of times.  I’m the only non-Mormon that works there (all the others are members of the Mt Shasta church and working in the Family History Center is assigned to them as a “mission”) and so I am not privy to the church news and easy to overlook.

I had a mixed reaction to the situation. On one hand I was angry that no one had called me and saved me the trip into town. However, I went home, kvetched a bit, had a bacon and egg burrito, took a nap, and by evening I felt much better.

Next scheduled session will be the 21st.


This past monday we made contact with some genealogical cousins. 








and Gordon stopped by on their way home from Olympic track trials in Eugene.


He is the “cousin” through my Mother’s Garrison line. But she is the one I knew first because she too is a nurse as well as a genealogy bug.

We met for midday meal since they were on a rather tight travel schedule. Fortunately for us, we met about 1230 so our time was at the end of the lunch rush.  We were able to sit and visit for over two hours.Group

Bennie, our server, was a dream.  She went beyond her responsibility to make us comfortable and welcome. When I thanked her, the reply was “That’s what I’m here for … to make people happy.”

The conversations were good.  Merna and I compared family notes, both current and genealogical.  Gordon and George talked man stuff like cars (George) and sports (Gordon). We were all engaged and comfortable and (as usual for the HiLo) the food was excellent.  What more can you ask of a family get-together.

They live down south near Santa Barbara and had taken avocados with them to Eugene.  There were some left.  We inherited them.  Guacamole to the fore.  That’s the second time this summer we’ve been gifted with avocados.  The first was from a summer neighbor who lives in West Covina.  That makes us lucky folks.

It would be nice if we get another chance to visit with Merna and Gordon … but since all four of us are in our 80s, we’ll accept one day at a time and appreciate the visit we just enjoyed.


Speaking of genealogy … I got caught in one of the most common traps last week.  I can’t remember what I started looking for but suddenly I was off by a couple of marriages with a list of folks to whom I have little or no relationship … probably because in the Holcombe family, connected to the Messengers in my father’s line, during the 18th century there are a minimum of two or three men in each generation named Nathaniel and more than one instance of sisters marrying brothers or cousins.  Oops …

I don’t have time to trace all the side branches and so am trying (emphasis here on “trying”) to keep my research to blood lines.


This morning is beautiful.13 July 2016

However, weather has been unpredictable.  First HEAT … then much lower temperatures and rain followed by frost. Today the prediction is for 90°+.  Poor plants aren’t quite sure what they are supposed to be doing. With climate change, maybe I’ll have to go with a greenhouse.  That’s what they used to do in this area.  There is still one of the old big greenhouses over in Edgewood, near the cemetery, where the stage stop used to be.


And finally the thought for the week … 


Live everyday like it’s your last because one day it will be.  Tell the ones you love that you love them every chance you get. Don’t take any moment for granted.


so …’til next week …




6 July …


My friend from the “New Mexico State Insane Asylum” (where George and I spent our honeymoon in a small apartment over the main entrance into the Administration Building) arrived on the 3rd.  She was with me on the 4th and seemed to enjoy the experience.Liz & George

The crowd was average.Before the Start  Last year participation had been down due to weather and wildland fire smoke. This year the temperature was just right …Morning Sky and the sky was lovely.

Long Rifles


The Long Rifles (black powder rifles) were there







(including Digger O’Dell, the mortician)

to start the walk/run …


then the taiko drums took over the beat until the last of the 4,600 participants were on their way.Capture

This year I did Net Control for the walk/run and then went to the corner by the City Hall for the awards.

After the awards and the raffle (a Weed resident won the new car), we split from town (too many people there), picked up three Papa Murphy pizzas and headed home.

This is the easiest, most laid-back of our summer commitments.

July 2016



Liz will be leaving this afternoon to return to Seattle. We are all getting so old we may not have a chance to “visit” again, so we really enjoyed this time together.



Tired of hearing about the radio events?

Two done. At least four to go … plus the swapmeet and potluck. Depending on what the club decides to do about the Tulelake, Medicine Lake, and Whiskeytown rides, maybe six or seven left for this year.


I went to see an ophthalmologist last week.  First eye exam I’ve had in a whole lot of years  I always dread going to a doctor.  They do tests and I have long-term problems with test taking.  I know … I know … not the same kind of tests.  Tell that to my chronic test anxiety.  If it’s a “test”, I have to get a good grade!

At the eye doctor’s, I got good news and bad news …

Bad news first … my eyesight is no longer that of a 20-year-old.  And my right eye (OD) is a lot worse than my left (OS).

Good news … the cataracts I was warned about twenty years ago, when I was told I would not be able to see if I did not have them removed before I was 75, have not gotten any larger. This time I was told having the right cataract removed might help with the right eye seeing double problem, but it is a 50-50 crap shoot. The cataract in the left eye is not big enough to offer any problems and so needs no attention. There is no residual scarring from the time I ruptured the blood vessel in my right eye nineteen years ago. There are no signs of retina or macular problems. My left eye sees 20/25 and needs little or no correction (I don’t know how to read optic scripts … guess I’ll need to learn) and prescription lens for my right eye should solve, or nearly solve, the problems there. I will get the script filled next time we are in Medford. 

Because of the rather large difference in my eyes, Dollar Tree glasses are now out of the question.

Barring problems, or the decision to have the right cataract removed, my next appointment is 7 July 2017.





The catalpa has come into bloom



6 July 2016and this morning is clear and bright …

There is no other news.


I can’t recall who said this or where I found it, but …


It is not because things are difficult that we do not dare. It is because we do not dare that things are difficult.


So … ’til next week …


29 June …


Trip to Medford was not normal this month.  Our appointment was a bit later which threw off the regular routine.

Road Work

And there was a long stretch of road work just north of Weed which slowed us a bit.

23 June 2016

It was sort of hazy, but we watched the Mountain as we went north.

In addition, going to Oregon every month means shopping isn’t as important on every visit. This month we went to only the restaurant supply store and CostCo after the retinologist which meant we were done in Medford by 1130. We decided to head for home rather than eat up there. We made it to Yreka a bit before 1330 and headed for Casa Ramos. Special of the day was a quesadilla plate.

Yum …


Some things I didn’t get around to telling you about last week’s radio event …

I came home with a box of bananas … not a hand, a box.

I had been told to take them from one rest stop to another but, when I got there, they didn’t want them so we left them in the back of the pick-up and I brought them home.  Banana bread, banana muffins, banana cake … and sharing.

The river was flowing FULL which was spectacular.

The flower display this year was different.  The ceanothus was in full display, but the azaleas had not yet opened.  I saw only two Shasta lilies. There were yellow lupine but no blue. It was all eye-candy, but I was driving alone and needed to be on station so I didn’t have time to stop and take pictures.

The Castle Crags catered after-ride dinner this year was excellent.  There was marinated bar-b-que chicken breasts which were set out serve-yourself style with two pasta salads and fresh bread and butter.  And, of course, the Dunsmuir Brewery provided a couple of kegs of pilsner and IPA.

And I forgot to tell you about the rider who was doing the 100-mile course with a straight-across, non-displaced fracture of his left knee cap. He was wearing a wrap, but …

Mountain bikers are interesting people.

The amateur radio operators are still getting compliments. 

They like us. They like us. 

They really like us.

Next up?  Mt Shasta 4th of July.


On the current list for harvest …All Heal



all heal,


Harvestthe first of the lavender, motherwort, French thyme, oregano, and elderflowers as well as more yarrow, lemon balm, and apple mint.

Tinctures, washes, and oils to come.

Mock Orange



The mock orange has burst forth, but it is strictly for pretty and aroma … not for drying.  If you know something about extra uses, please tell me.



The radio club’s involvement on the Castle Crags event so impressed some folks from the Cycle Siskiyou group they asked if we would be interested in doing a couple of other events.  I will be presenting the request to the club at the next meeting.

They are talking about a fairly flat ride through the Tulelake area which would include Captain Jack’s Stronghold, the Lava Beds area, and the Internment Camp with lectures and historical presentations at each rest stop.

The other ride they mentioned would be a circumference ride around Medicine Lake, maybe to coincide with the autumn indigenous PowWow event.

And we got another request from the Shasta-Tehama group.  They need five operators for Whiskeytown. 

The planned events sound interesting but

All of these are quite a distance from home and might require overnight stays someplace. That could be a drawback. The club will need to be very careful, and possibly set requirements and limits, so we don’t work ourselves out of existence.


It has been a bit since I last posted a word of the day … but this one caught me. 

I love rhyme and rhythm and unexpected results.  How about you?

tohubohu  … chaos, disorder, confusion

My first thoughts … possible confusion, but the rhythm and rhyme of the word itself belies chaos and disorder.

Of course, that could be said to add to the confusion.


Last monday morning, as I was out in the garden, a doe came past with her fawn.  Naturally … I didn’t have the camera.  Oh well …

Doe and Fawn

But I did have the camera handy when she brought the baby into the backyard yesterday. (Sorry it isn’t a really clear picture.  I’ll try again later.)



Small Aggressive Cat (AC for short) is learning.  He is a very smart animal.AC

While I work in the garden he follows, talks, and plays. Then as soon as I finish, he no longer tries to run along between my feet (troublesome at best) but now takes off directly for the area where I give him his morning milk and kibble. Then he waits, calling, until I make it around there.



I recently learned that a young relative (I’ve told you about him before … his great-grandmother was my cousin) is a ham.  He told me his Uncle Marvin (his great-grandmother’s brother and so also my cousin) had gotten him interested in amateur radio. He is planning to bring his family to visit next autumn.  Maybe, if he’s here at the right time, I’ll get him and his older son involved in a radio event.

That would be interesting.


Friend Liz will arrive next sunday.

And a letter from cousins Merna and Gordon say they will be here the 11th.

Too bad I have no time to be bored.


My middle son used to say “Coincidence?  I think not.” Last week I saw this …

Coincidence is the Creator’s way of staying anonymous!

So … ’til next week …



22 June …



I will start this week with a brag … or two.

First some background.  Yesterday I sent John into Weed to get some toilet paper.  I had mistaken a pack of paper towels for a pack of tp.  Oh well …

Weed is a small, POOR town. 

As he left the store, John found an open purse,  in a cart, containing what appeared to be a significant amount of cash.  He immediately took it into the store to see that it was safe.  In the store, clerks were busy (or inattentive) and it took some time and frustration to get the purse into a safe place.

This area has been experiencing some problems with vagrants and homeless folks.  The clerk to whom John finally was able to give the purse seemed to class him with those others. Really dumb.  Had he been one of them he would have pocketed the cash and disappeared.  Right?

At any rate, John came home and shared what had happened.  I shop at that store.  I know the financial status of the town.  I know the clerks at that store.  I called to tell the manager (who went to school with my sons) that I thought it was an unfortunate handling of the incident.

As a result, we learned the woman to whom the cash belonged had returned, crying, and was reunited with her purse.

And on another subject … my other son opened his church to any and all for support and sanctuary following the Orlando incident.

These incidents made me so proud of my sons


Radio stuff was prominent last week and weekend.

At the radio club meeting wednesday evening, there was a discussion in re the security watch we contract with the Mt Shasta Chamber of Commerce 4th of July Committee for vendor protection.  Questions in re responsibilities and liability had come up and caused some concern (and a little animosity) as had the request for extended hours without an offer of extended compensation.  Resolution took a few prickly minutes, but seems to have been handled.


Several problems arose at the last minute concerning the Castle Crags Bicycle Event.  George got them resolved … not easily, but they were resolved, and the event went well. 

There had been rain on wednesday, and thursday, and friday.  Saturday, for me, started with the drive up the road to Mumbo SummitArrival where there was snow on the ground.  The temperature was 32° and within half an hour it was snowing.  Result?  Lots of cold fingers and toes and red noses.PCTIt is an interesting location at the top of the mountains where the Pacific Crest trail crosses the road.  This year we met with hikers from North Dakota on the trail.

That was between 0800 and 0900.ClearingBy 1100 most of the snow was melted and the sun was breaking up the clouds.Set-up


This year my station folks were “Star Wars” people.  The boom box was blaring out the Star Wars soundtrack and there were two Princess Leia’s,Obi an Obi Wan (who welcomed riders into the stop), and a Tuskin Raider.  I carried Yoda on my chest.  But there was no Wookie.

Oh well …

We saw 153 riders through that stationClown (one of whom was a clown).  That was about half of the total participants (the others were on different courses). The count made me smile thinking about the Anderson ride a few weeks ago where the total participant count was 85.  As one rider said … “Siskiyou Rocks!”

The volunteers at Mumbo are talking about being girl scouts next year with badge sashes and badges for things like eye make-up and lollipop licking and cookie selling. I wonder if we’ll be required to wear bobby socks and beanies? And what would make a good sound track?

The radio club’s health and welfare efforts were VERY appreciated.  We had two riders who needed “rescuing” … one with an electrolyte problem (he was overweight and had not eaten anything before he began the 23 mile CLIMB up to Mumbo) and one with a severe thigh problem after about 50 miles (he was only a week past physical therapy for a fractured femur). 

At the end of the day, two riders had not returned but they were two guys from the Bay area who had started late due to weather and were first time mountain bikers. The rain had washed away some of the route markings at the far south end of the course.  We tracked them almost to Dunsmuir so the guess was they got lost on their way through that area and probably wound up at the Dunsmuir brewery where they could refresh and get directions.

It was a long day.  We left home before the sun was up and got home after 1800.RR ParkI finished my stint down at Railroad Park, admiring the old snow plow.

Sunday was a let’s-just-veg day.


Kitten report … He is still small, but he thinks he is big and is beginning to act that way.  He bosses the hens and now puts them away in the house before I get out to close them in for the night.  He allows me to stroke him and pick him up, but is no longer content to settle.  He wants down and wants his food. 

I sort of enjoyed the “kitten”, but he is meant to be a working cat, so this change is good. 

He appears to be a survivor.


Last thursday, on my way into town as I went down the hill, an interesting animal crossed the road. It had ears like a coyote and a nose like a fox.  Its coat was red, not the grey-brown mix of a coyote.  It was small for a coyote, but large for a fox.  I’d never seen one like it that I remember.

Later, at the Family History Center, I was talking with a friend who grew up in this area and he told me that many years ago there was a fox farm on Old Stage Road (must have been the 30s when women wore foxtail boas).  The farm was surrounded by a nine-foot fence.  One year they had a twenty-foot snow storm.

He also told me the foxes they were raising had an odor similar to that of skunk, just milder, which is noticeable during mating season when the males are marking territory.  We have experienced skunk odor around here this spring.  It has been fainter than usual skunk and we have seen no overt sign of skunk actions. 

Maybe we have one or more representatives of the fox-coyote cross sharing residence space at Cold Comfort.


John is here.

First task was to get George and me back on track with our computers.  George was having email trouble and I was having photo scanning trouble.  All seems to be resolved, as least as resolved as it can be when dealing with computer dinosaurs. Fortunately, John understands both computers and parents as well as teaching methods.

Next came getting plants into the ground.

He brought cherries from Marysville.  I first thought to make some jelly or preserves.  Then decided “No”.  We will enjoy eating them fresh. I may make a cobbler.  And when they’re gone that will be it for this season and we can anticipate next year’s season.

21 June 2016 NightTuesday night, John took his photographic equipment out and took this time shot of the mountain in Solstice moonlight.  See the star tracks?  It gave me chills.


FHC last week was a challenge.  A lady brought in two very young girls (ten or eleven years old) with the idea of getting them started on full family trees.  She had done no preparation with them. 

We tried to get them started.

“What is you mother’s maiden name?”

“What’s a maiden name?”

“What name did people call her?”


“What is your grandmother’s name?”

“Nonnie.” (i.e. Italian for Grandmother)

Add to that effort the idea that my research partner’s style leans toward rapid demonstrations using her own tree … “See, this is my great-great-grandmother and if I check this …”

One girl started drawing a version of Celtic knots.  The other kept looking out the window.

I wound up giving them pamphlets containing suggested questions to sit down with relatives and ask, and explaining how they could then come back with some answers and we would begin to build a tree.  I don’t know if I did any good.

Oh well …


And my rant for this week …

I find it interesting that more and more people (in the following cases the “people” are young white women) are able to hold and support completely opposite and often conflicting views of a situation at the same time with nary a hint of disconnect or disorientation.

Case in point … subtle racism as in “She’s not like us. Her skin is too dark. She is not acceptable in our clique.” while spending time and money on tanning beds to get skin as dark as possible.

Or … deploring sexism, rape, and the demeaning of women while letting it be known that being dragged into a violent bed is exciting and desirable.


Tomorrow morning John leaves and it is George and my monthly trip to the retinologist in Medford.

So … ’til next week .,..


Smart people aren’t smarter than me.  They’ve just read a book I haven’t read.