Friday, December 31, 2010

Who Dat

Jon found an old negative with a picture of our daughter Mary when she was about a year+. When he emailed it to Mary, she showed it to two year old Zoe and asked "Who is that"? Zoe answered, "Roman" , her brother. She is on to something. Roman looks like his mom. Zoe is a clone of her dad, Mike.

Andy & Laura's Real House

I found the picture. We are going to stop in today.

Eat the Yellow Snow

I took a snowshoeing lesson yesterday at a Lake Elmo Park. A friend and I signed up a month ago thinking we could try snowshoeing before buying the equipment. I envisioned a cold, sunny December 30th. Normal weather. It rained. It poured right before we started and then only light drizzle while we were outside. It was fun anyway.
The class was conducted by a naturalist who gave us some practical advice on which snowshoes to buy. He told us he would give us cues on tracking animals and what to note in the snowy woods. We had just started our trek when the leader bent down, picked up some yellow snow and ate it. Didn't his mom warn him? After watching us squirm, he admitted it is okay to eat some yellow snow. If it is by a tree and on the surface, go for it. The yellow is from the tannin in the tree. Yellow snow contaminated by animals melts the snow a little and is sunken. Aren't you glad you know that?
We enjoyed snowshoeing and I would definitely do it again. Next time I would try not to fall. The snow is deep and it is a little tricky getting up again. Thanks to some kind fellow shoers who gave me a hand. No harm. No fowl. Fun even if I was very wet when it was over. I have had the desire to just run off into the wood into deep snow for a long time. My only adventures have been hiking on paths or X-country skiing in the slots.

Thursday, December 30, 2010

No Pardon Necessary

Grandtwin Zoe. Recommended by her mama. Love that kid. Can't hide mischief if you leave fingerprints, Zoe!

Well, Pardon Me!

Rumors circulate that New Mexico Governor Richardson will posthumously pardon Billy the Kid before the governor leaves office. Billy, who was a pulp fiction hero in his time despite the problem of his killing 21 people, is again becoming a folk hero.
In an era of glorifying "Gansta rapsters" we also get folks who don't think mass murderers are so bad. Maybe he was misunderstood. Maybe his parents weren't attentive. I digress. Weren't there some guys who lead more admirable lives back then that we could idolize?

I wonder if Jesse James wants to line up for a pardon too. Public opinion turned against him when he cheated on wife Sandra Bullock with that human billboard of graffiti. No pardon for you Jesse....yet. Maybe in a hundred years. The public may be more inclined to pardon the original Jesse James.

Every time I get judgmental I am self-reminded of my lack of continuity. In yesterday's blog I claimed to "love" Brett Favre. I want to qualify that. I love his dedication to football. I am still mad at him for his sexting and betrayal of wife Deanna. Even Bill Richardson can't fix that. Pay the fine, Brett, and make nice at home. You may be a sports hero but so was Tiger.


Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Tuesdays With More - Joe Webb to the Rescue

Yesterday, son David commented that the networks probably wouldn't broadcast many Vikings games on Sunday night or Monday night football next year. They have had a lousy year. This year the Vikes were spotlighted several times. That honor came from having a great 2009 season. Favre carried us to the very steps of the Superbowl in 2009. We tripped and didn't make it, but it was a superb season.

2010 was not destined to be a repeat. "Our" (he may have finished a career in purple, but the Packer's should claim him) #4 played with a lot of heart and also a lot of injuries. He played with a broken ankle. He played with an injury that left his right hand purple and numb. He probably would have played after a concussion if league rules hadn't trumped his decision. He is a warrior and I love him.

Our luck...injuries, collapsed stadium roof etc. seemed to follow the Vikings to Philadelphia. A blizzard caused the game which was scheduled for NBC's Sunday Night Football broadcast, to be played on Tuesday. There hadn't been a Tuesday NFL game since 1946. Critics, including Pennsylvania's governor were irate that the game wasn't played in the snowstorm. He called the NFL "wusses".

I didn't hold much hope for an interesting game. Favre was on the injured list. The second string quarterback had a less than stellar performance at the last game. Then he went on the injured list as well with "turf toe". Turf toe? Did he stub his toe? Our only remaining quarterback was an untested rookie who was drafted as a wide receiver. Joe Webb to the rescue. Michael Vick, quarterback on the Eagles, would eat his lunch. Vick has had a great year.

Hope springs eternal. Joe Webb and Vikings defense played an amazing game and won big. They won an honor game and made snow-buried and soon-to-be rain drenched Minnesotans smile again. They impressed a surprised bunch of football TV comentators.
Joe Webb with that big smile and those fast scrambling feet won our hearts.

We are the champs of Tuesday Night Football.

Go Joe. Thanks Brett for a great effort. You may get that new stadium yet. Just don't send me the bill.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

New Homeowners

Our youngest son Andy and his new wife Laura just signed the papers this morning to buy a house. (No, it is not the one pictured on this blog. That is grandtwin Zoe exploring a play house at the Minnesota Arboretum.) I had a picture of their new home on my computer but must have deleted it.

We are always thrilled with our kids and grandkids milestones in life. Graduations, weddings, births etc make us proud. We are also happy for this young couple to be so blessed to start out in a home of their own. They have been city apartment dwellers in a nice old building on Grand Avenue, St. Paul. The downside has been the parking issues. Although they have two spaces to park offstreet, that space has shrunk to by 25% with all the snow. Now they can drive into their own garage. Garages are prized in this cold clime.

We are going to gain a closet when Andy takes his stuff from his old room. I have plans for that closet. Their house is bigger than ours so I am showing no mercy. Move the stuff when you can. Christmas decorations are going to find a home where he now has his things.

Congratulations kids. You really are grownups.

Monday, December 27, 2010

New Plan for Economic Recovery

What do TARP funds, Wall Street bailouts, tax relief, Cash for Clunkers, and GM buyouts have in common? All are federal programs for economic recovery that may or may not have worked depending on your political point of view.
What will they do in the new congress? Will we see more ideas for spending or more ideas for saving. I don't know. If they do decide to continue the federal charge-as-you-go program, I have a suggestion that many citizens might back. Buy a snow plow blade for every driver who wants one. This would benefit about half of the country who have been struggling with big snow this winter. Even the south and the high country out west have had too much snow. We are buried in white stuff in Minnesota.
This program could even get the backing of big-business NFL and TV networks who have seen a few games postponed in December. Manufacturers of the snow plow blades would hire more workers. We would sell more gasoline to people who would drive and not get stranded during storms ; BP & Shell would be happy. Employees would show up for work and productivity would be higher. There would be savings to local communities who would pay less overtime to city snow plowers. The mail could go through and US Postal service could stay competitive with UPS and Fed Ex.
I am starting to like this idea. Mobilize Americans. Don't worry about cancelled flights during stormy weather. Drive. Drive unimpeded by drifts of snow. Blaze the way.
Now all I have to do is convince our Hawaiian president of the need. He is missing the great east coast blizzard. Maybe I can appeal to John Boehner. Hope he doesn't get sentimental and tear up.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

"And It Came to Pass in Those Days" that the media got something very right

In this age of political correctness when wishing someone a "Merry Christmas" is frowned upon by some, I was pleasantly surprised at what I noted yesterday. The St. Paul Pioneer Press published an "Excerpt: An Account of Christmas, from the Book of Luke (King James version)" on the Opinion page in the place where the editorial usually is. Surprising and much needed good news in this troubled world. They printed Luke 2: vs 1 -20.

Saturday, December 25, 2010

A New Christmas Story

We had a wonderful Christmas Eve celebration that started at noon and ended about the time midnight mass from the Vatican was on TV. We weren't watching TV, that is what was on when I collapsed into a recliner before bedtime.

Our new daughter in-law Laura had to work the 3-11 shift at the hospital so Andy and Laura came for lunch. That is the lot of nurses. Some must work the holidays. Andy stayed. After her shift they were to meet her parents and brother at Midnight Mass at the St. Paul Cathedral.

Our oldest Dan and family and son Dave were here to celebrate too. Dan & Jen's kids are growing up. Zach is eighteen and a great kid who gave me two big hugs and an "I love you grandma" as he left. Mina will be fourteen soon and the sweetest girl. She played with the two years olds and helped them pass out the presents. I reminded her it wasn't many years ago that she and I played "having tea" at holidays. We would get out the doll dishes and I would be the pretend customer at her cafe. Now Mina wants to go to culinary school and open her own restaurant when she grows up.

Daughter Mary and Mike arrived after the kids afternoon nap. The two year old twins were such a delight. They talk in short sentences and we were all entertained by what they say. The loved all the toys they got, but Roman was fixated on the package of 48 AA batteries that Andy gave son in-law Mike. Roman carried it around asking everyone if they would "open it" for him. We all declined to slit the shrink wrap for him and chase the 48 batteries that would scatter. Next, Grandpa Jon got a (sealed plastic) package of Jordan Almond candy. Roman called these "beans" and kept after grandpa to "open beans, grandpa". Sorry little one. Choking hazard. No beans for you.

Jon fires up the wood stove in our attached garage during holidays for a smokers' lounge. (one less this year. Dan quit.) Mike came in and announced we had a "Christmas Bat" flying around. Grandpa & Mike brought the twins out to see it. The bat flew circles around them as they held the kids. They weren't scared. Then Jon opened the door and the critter flew out. Zoe became upset when the bat exited and Roman started crying. What, no bat for Christmas Eve? I guess fear of bats is learned behavior. If I had been out there they probably wouldn't have had such warm thoughts about pet bats.

When they came in, Zoe continued to talk about the bat while Roman wept. He wouldn't let me console him, so I picked up Zoe and asked if we should look out the window for the bat. There is a full moon and it is bright outside with the snow cover. I pointed to the sky and asked if she saw the bat flying around. Couldn't see him. Then I told her that Santa would fly in the sky tonight. Santa would fly with his reindeer. "No", she said. "Santa and (his) doggies". I wonder if the lead dog has a red nose.

Someday Zoe and Roman will be eighteen and you can be sure we will tell them the story of the Christmas bat and santa and his doggies. We might even give Roman his own jar of "beans" and a package of batteries. I hope they will give me a hug and an "I love you, grandma" as they leave.

Merry Christmas from a very blessed woman. Keep your eye out for the bats and the doggies.

Friday, December 24, 2010

Christmas Eve

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas. Fresh snow again this am. I ran to the grocer for a couple of last minute items. When I came out, I was surprised how much snow had accumulated on my car. I stood next to it and pressed the remote. I heard the click but the door wouldn't open. I repeated the process but still couldn't open the door. Then I realized why there was so much snow on my car. It wasn't my car. Don't tell anybody. Time to go now. Time to shovel more snow.
Merry Christmas.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Dear Santa

Jon yelled for me yesterday saying, "Come see what I really want for Christmas".
The one seen belongs to the city of Stillwater.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Beautiful...take a peaceful moment to feed your soul

Driving Miss Zoe

Last Christmas I drove my family crazy with my worrying. Our German friend Kai, who was studying at a Virginia university for a semester, was driving here from the east with a German friend. They had a record two foot snowfall in the area days before he left and more snow and ice storms enroute. He didn't call and I was concerned. They arrived intact.

There is a lot of traveling home to family for the holidays and this year a lot of stormy weather. One friend has a daughter & family coming from Colorado with three kids under 18 months in the car. Her other daughter will come with three kids from Texas. Mom's breath easier when everyone arrives safetly. We drove through winter weather when we were young and it didn't concern us at the time.

Our daughter Mary & husband Mike are driving their new minivan and the twins to the Chicago area to visit his family. His brother will be home from the Air Force and he has never met the kids. Everyone is anxious to see each other and we were glad they could do the trip. They left just yesterday as it was snowing, driving the direction the snow would go.

My job is to pray for safe travel and not to worry. I did and was relieved to get emails sent via cell phone from Mary while enroute. The first one left me laughing so hard and lightened my mood. Mary said, "We are an hour out and Zoe is squirrley. She keeps saying 'I want to drive'. Mike had his last cigarette this morning and we are having a gay old time." Another email arrived later saying they were in Illinois. Good. Good luck and happy trails. I am just keeping that message of "I want to drive" in my head. Did I mention that Zoe is two years old?

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Winter Begins At 5:38 pm CST

Did you think it was winter already? Wait a little longer. It starts this evening.

Save the Dome

Ten days ago Minneapolis was in the news for a near-record early December blizzard that dumped snow measured by the foot. This load of snow caused the inflatable roof of the domed football stadium ( officially the Hubert H. Humphrey Dome at Mall of America Field) where the Minnesota Vikings play, to collapse. Down it came, just like the hopes of Vikings fans who have watched their purple team collapse this season. Off went the Vikings to play a rescheduled Sunday to Monday game in Detroit.
Stadium officials, Vikings management, NFL bigsters, media and local government stared at the hole and scratched their collective heads. What to do. What to do? It became apparent there was no quick fix. No fix before the next game on Dec. 20. Moving to another city would result in too much of a revenue loss. The decision was made to play at the beautiful year-old TCF Bank stadium on the U of MN campus.
Tell me again why we didn’t think of that before. Share that stadium. The Gophers play on Saturdays. The Vikings play Sundays.
We watched as an Herculean effort converted the TCF stadium from a buried in two feet of snow winterized Dr. Zhivago ice stadium into a ready to play again shoveled out, semi-defrosted option. They did it. They were ready for the final game between the Vikings and Bears.
Die-hard fans came despite another snowstorm starting a few hours before game time. Die-hard fans came despite scarce parking that cost $20 - $40 bucks. Die- hard fans came despite the no alcohol policy of the university. Die-hard fans came even if they couldn’t tailgate. These folks love the Vikings and the nostalgia of outdoor football kept their spirits high.
In an era of cash strapped state and local governments, we should take note of this desire for nostalgia. Why not return to the days when tough northern teams who played outdoors had an advantage over teams like the Miama Dolphins and other hothouse teams? Bud Grant knew the possibilities and those were the golden days of the Vikings. Toughen up. Outlast them. Fans stayed warm enough huddled over parking lot tailgate barbeques in their snowsuits with ETOH coursing through their veins. We could do this.
Here is my win/win solution. It came to me this morning after reading an article in the paper about officials shooting out another panel in the stressed Metrodome roof. The roof has been temporily patched but a buildup of ice was threatening to damagethe supporting cables if it collapsed again. They used a shotgun to destroy the panel leaving another gaping hole for the ice to come down .
Why can’t we just shoot the whole thing down? Sell the right to shoot holes in the dome roof to the highest bidder. Won't we all have more $$$ after the Tax cuts? Rich men have spent big money hunting big game in Africa. Why not spend big money for a chance to see who can fire the round that brings the whole thing down? Then we could keep what is left of the building and play outdoor football there. The parking, public transportation and surrounding bars are already in place. Pretty it up a bit. Fans could drink, tailgate and wear snowmobile suits to watch football. We could beat the Miami Dolphins and have our vengeance against the New Orleans Saints who beat up Brett in 2009’s playoff.

Monday, December 20, 2010

These Trucks Come With Diamonds

We had dinner last night with a small group of friends that we rarely see. A few months ago we were invited to a birthday party for Bruce that we were unable to attend. During dinner I asked how the birthday party came out. This brought a smile to his face and a laugh from his wife.
She had kept the party as a surprise. When he was a little late arriving home, she called and asked him where he was, assuming he was just held up at work. His answer didn't please her. "I'm on my way to Michigan" was the answer. They live in Minnesota. Michigan is the wrong way. People are coming. There is a party planned.

She had assumed he would be home as usual. He had other plans. Bruce collects vintage trucks and had purchased a '74 Dodge pickup on-line. He has a lot of trucks and wouldn't give a straight answer when I asked how many. A lot. A lot of trucks. He owns a large farm with buildings to store his collection. His wife does not think he needs more trucks and his philosophy is that "It is easier to obtain forgiveness than permission" to make another purchase.

Wife Margaret flashed a beautiful new diamond studded wrist watch which he purchased after his latest acquisition. Keep the bling coming, Bruce. You don't need her permission to buy that.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Expectant Life -or- Expecting a Long Life

I had breakfast yesterday with a group of retired nurses I had worked with over the past few decades. Some of us meet monthly but yesterday were happy to see four new people join the group. It has been a few years since I have seen some of them.
We took turns telling what was going on in our lives. There were updates on our kids and grandkids and husbands. Some were going through serious health problems and we empathized. Several were getting ready to head to a warmer climate for the winter. One is going to New York to sing with a Chorale group at Carnegie Hall. We were impressed. She said her granddaughter asked "What's Carnegie Hall". Kids will keep you humble.
My former "boss" said she had fired her doctor and now got her health care from a "Mid-life midwife". ?? Everyone but me seemed to understand the term. Since she is a year older than me, I wondered what place a midwife had in her life. Of course I Googled the term when I got home and found many sites. One described a mid-life midwife as someone who helps you give birth to the rest of your life. Hmmm. The word midwife doesn't seem to fit in my life, and if this is mid-life I am surprised. I enrolled in Medicare on my last birthday. If this is mid-life I should be expecting to live to 130. I guess I am not that optimistic.
Mid-life doesn't seem right for me, but I am not going to upgrade to an "End-life Midwife either. I think I will stick with my physician.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Youngest Contestants Survive Dancing With the Stars Cuts Due to Prejudice

(Wondered if that title would catch a few readers.)

Youngest dancers I speak of are our twin grandkids who love the show. A few bars of da-da-da-da, DA,Da,Da...get their attention. Daughter Mary reports Zoe says "Tutu, mama" and isn't happy until she is wearing her pink tutu. Mary had to get it out of the laundry Monday night. Who knew you needed more than one tutu for a toddler girl? You need two tutus at two: a spare if one is in the wash!
I submitted a little story about Zoe titled "The Girl in the Draggin' Tutu" a month ago. She is still draggin' it around and wearing the versatile garment over jeans or pajamas.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Daddy's Girl

Daughter Mary commented on the kids blog about a resemblance between Mike and Zoe.
I agree especially after comparing photos of a young Mike to Zoe.
(Pictures pilferred from the twins blog.)

Little House Not On The Prairie

Found a Lil Tykes Playhouse on Craigslist for the kids birthday.

Friday, September 10, 2010

My Latest Read

Enjoyed this book which was recommended by my sister in Texas. Had to call her and ask if the pioneer rancher in the book, August Schmidt, was the same homesteader of their property. Yup. It made the book more interesting because we have stayed with them and can picture the area.

The novel is about the great drought of the '50's and presents an empathetic picture of the trials of ranchers and men who work the land.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Time For Vikings to Pillage When the Saints Go Marching In

Headline in the St. Paul Pioneer Press this morning says, "Imagine". Beneath that is a photoshopped picture of our #4, Brett Favre holding the superbowl trophy.

Many NFL fans felt good seeing Drew Brees and the NO Saints win the big game last February. New Orleans needs encouragement and that quarterback brought game.

It is time to have mercy on this franchise. The Vikings have never won the big game. Those who lived through the glory years in the 70's are a little gun shy, at least I am. We have four Superbowl games and four losses. But, hope springs eternal.
This might be the year. It is #4's last season. (At least that is what his contract says.) Fans are hanging a lot on one guy. We could win it all if those bruisers from the Saints don't mangle poor Brett at the season opener tonight.
If that happens, we will have to live with today's front page and print that photoshopped picture to hang on the wall.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

The Last Word on Feet

Now some cute feet. Zoe, prepped to be a flower girl and Roman in his big boy shoes.

Watch Your Step

Today's title seems a natural to follow yesterday's "Walk This Way". The similarity ends there.

I am issuing a caution to all who are associated with me to "watch their step".
This might sound superstitious, but in case there is any truth to Six Degrees of Separation, step lightly. Too many coincidences lately to people I love.

My husband, Jon, fell a month ago breaking his kneecap and injuring is foot.

My friend, Karen, fell Friday and broke a bone in her foot. While she was hospitalized, her grandson was treated at the same hospital's ER for an injured foot....then his mom slipped and tore a tendon in her ankle.

Tomorrow we are going to visit Jon's 95 yr. old aunt who fell and thankfully didn't break anything.

This summer we are cheered on Jon's cousin as she recovers from foot surgery.

The summer started with our thirteen-year-old granddaughter falling from her bike and breaking a wrist and elbow. She didn't hurt her feet.

My sister just had wrist surgery and another friend also named Karen is recovering from hand surgery.

Today when Jon visited his podiatrist regarding his slowly healing foot, the Doctors nurse who has helped us this past month was hobbling out on crutches. She had fallen and broken a bone in her foot.

Careful out there. Even the caregivers are going to ground.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Walk This Way

More about those twins who are almost two. Mary and the kids spent time with us yesterday while Mike did some painting. We took them for a walk. They held our hands and kept up. (Maybe we kept up with them.) I was thinking the half mile walk would end with us carrying a kid or two, but they were troopers. At every intersection Zoe says "stop" while we looked for cars. Cute. The main distractions were a squirrel a rock or two they had to have.

This brought back memories of walking with our kids when they were little. Daughter Mary was a trooper. We took her on hikes on steep trails by Lake Superior campgrounds and around Lake Nokomis. She kept up. Zoe and Roman are like mommy.

Saturday, September 4, 2010

It's a Small, Small World

Zoe and Roman make friends with bride Laura's cousin Hannah.

Flower Girl and Ring Bearer Spotting "deplain"

Roman marched down the aisle carrying his ring pillow and a cup of crackers. Zoe would have none of it. Her job was to look cute and she did. While the bride and groom were speaking their vows an airplane was spotted by the twins who announced "Plane". Memorable and priceless. we don't have a photo of them when they saw the plane during the ceremony but they saw another one later on.

Andy & Laura

One week ago already.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Here Comes the Bride and Her Dad

Last Saturday our youngest, Andy, married his Laura. The bride was lovely. This is her entrance on the arm of her proud dad. More pictures to follow. We are all taking a deep breath and relaxing that all went well and it didn't rain on their outdoor ceremony.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Let My People Go..... The Plague of Frogs Continues

The past few years we have seen a resurgence of tiny frogs and tree toads in our yard. It was amusing initially. The inch long amphibians could be viewed clinging to the siding or stuck on windows. They hopped away from approaching lawnmowers. They clung to potted plants on the deck.
I was fine with the little fellows until they started hitchhiking indoors. A summer or two ago I found one in the kitchen sink. He was promptly relocated outside. Later I saw one on the living room floor and caught him up with a stern warning not to come back.
Three weeks ago as I stumbled into the bathroom in the early am I noticed a leaf on the floor and bent to pick it up. Before I could grab it, it hopped away. Not funny. I caught him too.
They giving me the creeps.
They habituate our deck, clinging to the umbrella over the table and deck furniture.
My husband, now wheelchairing (broken kneecap is healing) in and out to smoke on the deck. undergoes a security check not unlike the US / Mexican border crossing by me. I am certain they will hop on in with him or hitch a ride on the back of his wheelchair.
Yesterday I picked a pail of ripe tomatoes and took them to the sink to wash. Out hopped another frog.
Today when I stooped to pick up the newspaper by the front door a frog was perched on it. I am getting paranoid. Jon says we need to "defrog".
Our former pastor used to question why Pharoah asked Moses to take away the plague of frogs tomorrow. Tomorrow? Why not now? today? No wonder the Israelites triumphed over the Egyptians. What sane person wouldn't want the frogs gone today. That is my prayer. Lord keep those jumpers away from my dwelling. Please. Now... if it is convenient.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Mary, Queen of the Gypsies

This isn't a shrine, or a novena or a new name for Jesus mother. This isn't about
pampered EU royalty or a new pop music princess. This is about my dear friend Mary.
Mary is spending the summer as a servant-evangelist under the Christian ministry "Light for the Nations". She is living in a gypsy village in Szekelyhid, Romania among the people she loves teaching English to youngsters. Speaking English will give these young people a better future and employment.
She loves the people in the camp and they return the love. She says they treat her like a queen. If you knew Mary you would smile. She is unassuming and humble but lights up a room with her smile. Her red hair sets her apart and her taste for colorful clothes and jewelry gives her a regal flair. She is one of the most lovely people I know and we all look forward to her return in late September to hear more of her stories and see all the pictures.
Enjoy the rest of the summer, Mary. I think you are going to miss those loving people when you return home.
This is not her first trip to Romania but is her longest. I believe she has gone on eleven mission trips to eastern European countries. The picture on the blog is from a previous trip. Of course, Mary is the one in the torquoise coat holding the bright pink umbrella. The same wagon is her chariot this summer. Most of the time they walk and occasionally slog through the swamp for access to a computer.
Minnesota is going to seem dull after this experience.

Friday, August 13, 2010

Are They Going to Get Mooned

I am gullible and believe too many of the circulating stories on the net. I check some stories with Snopes, but wonder why I trust Snopes. Reportedly Snopes verification is done by a husband and wife sitting at a computer somewhere in the US.
It enjoys a good reputation but who verifies them. My next level of trust is in Wikipedia. Do you realize anyone can edit a wiki? With that in mind, here is one of the latest rumors on the web. Snopes says it is a rumor.

On August 27th, there will be two moons in the nightsky. This is not the same as a "blue moon" when a full moon occurs twice in the same calendar month twenty-eight days apart. The two-moon show is predicted because Mars will preportedly be closer to the earth than it has in the last 5,000 yrs. Mars will appear as large and bright as the full moon.

Our son is getting married Aug. 28th. I don't believe in astrology or horoscopes or follow signs in the sky, but even Jesus had a star that shone when he was born.

Andy will be all eyes on Laura on August 27, the light of his life the night before the wedding. No predicted display in the sky will distract from her.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Stillwater Woman Wrestles with the WWE

I was left scratching my head after hearing an interview on "The Today Show" this morning. A reporter asked Vince McMahon who heads World Wrestling Entertainment Inc., if negative ads about his wife Linda, former WWE Ceo and now reppppublican candidate for senate from Connecticut, would damage their companies' "brand". We have sunk to new lows when professional wrestling may be concerned about an association with politics. Reminds me of jokes about the pig going into the bar and the pig being worried about his reputation.

Minnesota has once again been a trend setter. We elected a wrestler to the governor's office ten years ago. I don't think Linda McMahon was ever seen in a pink boa so she may be a less objectionable candidate than our former head of state.
It is primary election day in Minnesota and as a good citizen we should vote. I wonder if I could write in Hulk Hogan.

Jon has been coping pretty well with confinement due to his kneecap fracture. He scoots around the house, hopping between w/chair and bed or recliner. Much of his time is spent programming his new netbook computer. I (dutifully/ naggingingly) remind him to put is swollen leg up. He is supposed to wear an immobilizer on the knee but rejected it after two days. Today I quipped, "What if your knee heals but your leg is stuck at a 90 degree angle?" He answered, "Give me a break". Thought he already had one.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Vocabulary Word of the Day : Brontide

We fixate on weather reporting in our state. Because we have extremes of cold, snow and hot, steamy summers our attention is focused on weather. We don't need to listen or watch weathercasts if we have a computer but we do. My late father in-law amused us years ago by buying a VCR to tape the 10pm news and weather because he fell asleep watching it. Think about it. By the time he played the tape that weather system was happening.

It seems like it has rained half of the days this summer and we should be grateful. With all the precipitation and forecast precip you would think I would have already heard about brontide. As we had our early morning cup of coffee on the deck we noted dark clouds approaching and a low, rumbling thunder without lightning. I googled "thunder" to see if there was a name for the phenomonon and found brontide.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Will the Real Butter Princess Please Stand Up -or- Float Like a Butterfy

We have a long tradition at our Minnesota State Fair of sculpting a bust of contestants for Dairy Princess. I never was a dairy princess, but at long last have reached my dream. Facebook has an app that allows you to see yourself memorialized. Who could resist.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

It's Cool to be Green

Just listened to a story on NPR that amused me. A Canadian man from Nova Scotia is involved in a disagreement with local authorities. Self-described as "not a tree hugger" but wanting to be responsibly green, he purchased a motorized Coleman cooler on wheels. It is designed to be an extreme cooler that will transport a person(up to 300 lbs) to the picnic while keeping the liquids very cold. The ad claims it will travel at 15 mph. He said he would emit less carbon if he drove the cooler around town than if he used his Impala.

The first time he took it on the road he was stopped by a policeman who asked to search the vehicle. He didn't have beer on board, but was advised to wear a helmet and drive on the sidewalk. He complied and was later stopped by another officer who ticketed him for driving a motorized vehicle on the sidewalk.

The guy is appealing claiming people drive motorized wheelchairs and scooters on the sidewalk and don't wear helmets. The judge agreed there was some merit to his case.

Local politicians have not addressed the question of motorized coolers on wheels.
There might be a window when this inexpensive form of transportation would be viable.
Just be sure to drive sober. It isn't legal to canoe, bicycle or even walk drunk in Minnesota.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Losing Face

My nemesis: Facebook. I know that punctuation is incorrect. A couple years ago I even read the book, "Eats, Shoots and Leaves" but I don't recall what I read. If you can believe it, I had excellent grammar and punctuation skills in high school. Trouble is high school days are eons ago. I am now in that group who will wear purple when they want and throw in a colon or semi-colon where I think it looks right.

Now about facebook. After receiving another suggestion about fixing my double account, I made the leap and did the fix. I was finally able to spot my problem. The double account was due to using two e-mail addresses on login. Because I had the same password on both, I was reluctant to push de-activate. I did it and the correct account survived. Hardly anyone comments on my Facebook blurbs so it really is insignificant.

I should be happy about killing off my evil faceless twin on Facebook, but my joy didn't last long. Today I made a new booboo. Thinking it would be fun to befriend Ole Savior, a guy who is running for governor, I asked to be his friend. (I blogged about him last week.) Ole seems to have a sense of humor based on his pick of a running mate named Elvis. Terry Elvis Anderson. They are running as Ole & Elvis. I wanted to see if he was selling t-shirts. When I put in a request to be his friend, a screen came up with all my Facebook friends and email list. I hit the wrong button and offered all of you to him. If you get a request from Ole, you can ignore it. I plead forgiveness unless you too would like an Ole & Elvis for Governor t-shirt. I REALLY did do this accidentally.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Pimping Pawlenty

Our Governor, Tim Pawlenty, has had increased national visibility the past few years on national TV shows. He frequently travels on weekends appearing to prefer speaking to a group in New Hampshire or Iowa to doing a ribbon cutting ceremony at a grand opening in Minnesota. He won't announce he is running for president but everyone thinks he is.
Yesterday I listened to radio program political analysts from New Hampshire and Iowa discussing Pawlenty. One thought he was a nice guy but boring. Many Minnesotans have been pleased with a bland governor. He followed the big guy...the former wrestler/ movie actor. Enough said. There are no scandals in Pawlenty's wake except that his wife caught more fish than he did at the Governor's Fishing Opener.

What can the Governor do to attract more attention and support? Maybe he should use the opportunities he has. If Iowans think he is boring, he might remind them that Minnesota is all they have to defend the border to their north. We have been holding the line at the northern border. (We are the only state that noticed and reported the 9-11 terrorists when they were taking flying lessons here.)
I am not aware of illegals running across the northern border to deliver babies in border hospitals and we don't even need a 15 ft. fence. Tim could brag that we have answers to keeping our borders secure. We also keep a lot of Wisconsin Cheeseheads out because we don't seem to be able to replace that 1930 river crossing in Stillwater. How long can our old bridge last? The river is 65 feet deep and there won't be many who wade across like they do the Rio Grande at low water.

The Tea Party has it's champion (Sarah Palin). Maybe Pawlenty could boost our state image and his career by championing fishing. He could share our recipe for lutefisk. He would be unique. Lutefisk provokes strong feelings. Love it or hate it. That might be what he needs. Now he better work on his fishing technique and not let wife Mary outshine him next year at the Governor's opener. He should also be cautious going fish-to-fish with former Gov. Palin.

Did Palin Look Pale?

Someone should invite Sarah Palin over for a cup or tea and sympathy. I am assuming she is not thrilled with her daughter's recent engagement. Haven't seen or heard any recent press releases from Wasilla welcoming Levi into the family. Maybe they are resigned. Maybe they are accepting.
Our offspring get to pick their own mates. We have been pleased with the choices our kids made. Not all parents are. I am not Bristol's mom so I will offer my opinion. The guy is a cad. He is naive and was probably manipulated by politically motivated people to behave badly. Don't marry him. It is a big country. You may not like anyone you see in Wasilla, Alaska, but it is a big world.
Is this girl a romantic, or also naive or seeking the limelight herself? A reality show is in the offing. I am glad I don't have cable. Bristol is reportedly making $15,000 to $30,000 per appearance as a single mom warning against teen pregnancy. That should pay the diaper bills. You don't need Levi.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Bayfield with an Olive

We just returned from our annual visit to the quiet little town of Bayfield, WI . We visited many times over the years and now do an annual summer visit. It has become one of our favorite places. Pictures don't reveal how charming it is. (Google Apostle Island National Shore. )
We found the beach where locals swim this time. Miles of sandy beach with crystal clear water and only a few people. Bliss.
Bayfield, tucked into a bay on Lake Superior, reminds me of a little fishing village on the east coast but without the throngs of people. It does get its share of tourists but if you stay overnight most leave. We stay downtown and have dinner on the deck of a local establishment overlooking the gazebo and marina. We enjoy the view and a martini. I am not a drinker. Never have been able to drink without giggling. We cold have shared the first drink.
This visit left me with an overwhelming urge to sell our house and move there. While it would be blissful May to Oct., the winters would be long. Most local shops close, sailors and summer people leave and the local population of 611 hunkers down for the winter. We talked to a couple locals who love it but admit it gets quiet. Maybe with a Kindle and a fast internet connection....
In the end we agreed to continue our yearly visits and maybe rent a house for a month to see if this is a pipe dream. Jon also promised to take my ashes back for a dinner and drink on the deck if I go first. Smiling, he said I would probably not be so worried about talking too loud after that martini. I kept asking him in a whisper if I was talking too loud. Never could handle the booze.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Good Book

Just finished reading "Peace Like a River". I picked it off a display at the library of books recommended by the librarian. I am keen on reading books by Minnesota authors and this didn't disappoint. The characters are beautiful.
It was published in 2001.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Suspicious Minds Question Candidate on Fair Proposal

I'll bet most Minnesotans thought Brett Favre was a modern day savior. In spite of Brett giving his all, we know how that worked out. Don't lose hope. A new "savior" is on the way. This isn't about football or religion. Worse. It is about politics.

After watching twenty DFLers (Minnesota's version of a Democrat) file to run for governor, we have seen that list pared down. We have an endorsed candidate. We also have two rich guys who are spending their own money with hopes of winning the DFL primary without party endorsement. They are Matt Entenza and Mark Dayton. The last time I made a comment about Dayton on this blog, I heard from his people. I won't say anything about him this time. If he wants to spend a large part of his family inheritance pursuing election, that is his business. I don't have to understand.
Mayor Bloomberg of NYC did the same. Personally, I think candidates who freely spend other people's $$$ are thinking more clearly. No one asked my opinion.

I digress. The purpose of this blog is to reveal a new Republican candidate for governor. Our primary has been moved up to August and we will vote soon. Voters need information. I know, we will be bombarded with more campaigning than we can handle but this guy's name caught my attention. He isn't really new to state politics. He has run for office as a Democrat for the past 26 yrs. Ahh, a man in the tradition of the late-great Harold Stassen. Sadly, the Democrats haven't warmed to him this year. He didn't get a single vote at the convention this spring and switched allegiance to the Republican party who must be thrilled. His name? His name is Ole Savior. You read correctly.

Today's paper list him among "Other GOP (Minnesota's term for Republicans) Candidates". They say "He proposes to build a new Minnesota Vikings stadium funded in part by racetrack gambling proceeds and to keep the State Fair open year-round."

Isn't that wonderful? We could eat pronto pups and chocolate covered bacon on a stick all year 'round if we didn't mind standing in line in our parkas and mittens.
This guy sounds like a fresh fount of ideas. Since local politicos heavily campaign at the State Fair, we might keep them off TV and not calling us on the telephone. They could work the fairgrounds year around. I think I might like Ole Savior.

Good luck winning over Republican voters, Ole. Your first name might help in this land of Sven & Ole, but building stadiums with gambling revenue isn't going to endear you to most.

I wonder why the Democrats didn't vote for him. Don't discount him winning if it becomes a three-way race. We did elect a governor in a boa a few years back, a Saturday Night Life writer and even an inmate in the state pen won election as a judge. The judge didn't get to serve his term on the outside.

Someone thought the name Ole Savior was an unfair advantage. Apparently Ole didn't feel that secure his name alone would help elect him. He chose an Elvis impersonator as a running mate. Now we know why he wants to keep the state fair open year-round. They could play the grandstand. The other plus for Ole is the purple necktie he wears in this picture. Go Vikes. We don't know if Brett Favre is coming back this fall. We need some help wooing him.

I might have dropped out of the gubernatorial race too soon. I thought my credentials were a little thin. Who knew? Thanks to those who encouraged me. Thank you. Thank you very much.

If you want further amusement, read his profile on the link to website. Certainly if his good ideas don't impress, the fact he donated 6 gallons of blood might help him.
Link: cut and paste to address line.