Sunday, August 29, 2010

Dog Race


So, sometimes Jack Russells just have to GOOOO!  They have difficulty storing energy for any length of time.  Most of the time they have to let it out at some point during the day…that holds true for my dog.


He was being annoying, so I took him to the local school and let him run…

rocketdogfun rocketdoglaunch rocketdogrollin rocketdogzips

He does not slow down…much.


I thought you might like to see him.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Visit The Family!

Emma sweet

We dropped by my sister’s house.  They made dinner!  Fortunately we had the forethought to bring desert.  I had my camera…which is a good thing, since my Nephews and niece are so darned photogenic!

Oh, and so is my brother-in-law…did I mention that?  Look at those eyes! 


I enjoy taking pictures of my oldest nephew.  He is excellent at working for the camera.  Even his expression works!


He is awesome to take pictures of.  He even got curious about my camera and I let him look through it.


Tell me he isn’t 100% boy!


And yet, my niece is 100% girl!

Emma Sweet1

Here is my BIL, he finds me to be completely hilarious.  He is one of my biggest fans.

Scott again

As is my other nephew, look at those adoring eyes.


It was great to see everyone!

Friday, August 27, 2010

Mountain Dawn


So, I took my Precious to work…I wanted to get the dawn as it struck the mountain tops.  They show pink while everything else is blue.  It is something I think few appreciate.  It is something I grew up with, but my time in California made me appreciate our wonderful geology and geography.  If you don’t live here, you don’t understand what we see everyday. 


Yeah, folks, those are TWO different mountains.  We have several here.  The first is Mount Rainier, the lower is Mount Adams.  pretty cool, huh?

We had meetings today.  Beginning of the year type meetings.  One was for our department.  That was not nearly as tedious as the other.  On the bright side, one of my favorite coworkers showed up, after spending the summer recuperating from a broken leg…when I say broken, we might as well describe it as shattered.  He still has a couple more weeks before he can come back. 


The second meeting was…a joke.  I am not sure how others kept a straight face.  Unless they bought into it…and that’s just scary.  I felt like Hermione during Umbridge’s speech (if you haven’t read Harry Potter, just give up trying to get this)!  I was seeing things that others did not…well, maybe they did, but they did not let it show on their face.  Oh, and now I have to make sure my interaction with students does not cross a boundary, though it is often OK to cross a boundary, but if someone else sees they are obligated to report it…but it’s ok…sort of…and crossing a boundary is as easy as touching a student on the shoulder…are you all getting this?  They said it’s ok to touch a student on the shoulder, but it is also a boundary.  Anytime you see someone cross a boundary you are obligated to report it…seems like a catch 22.  So, should I report every hug I receive from over-zealous kinders, because technically a boundary has been crossed?  To put it in the lexicon of one of my coworkers, I was “rattled.” 

I drove through town to deliver a resume and application.  No need to get excited, folks, I won’t get this one, but a friend pointed it out for me and even wrote a letter recommending me…still, my qualifications are minimal for this job…which is not to say i could not do it, I learn fast and am capable, but I think someone else will be more qualified.

Anyway, I kept seeing cops all the way into town.  Of course, this is because of the local State Troopers that died in a house fire.  I knew one of them.  He was a regular at the truck stop I worked at when I was in High School.  I can’t remember for sure, but he may have pulled me over once…still, he was a really nice guy.  I might have attended his funeral had it been on a Saturday.  Our state sends cops from all around to these funerals, and Washington has seen too many of late.  I saw several cars from both sides of the state.  Spokane, Seattle, etc.  I’d have liked to have seen it…I had not seen him in at least sixteen years, but he will be missed.  Good guys always are.  Below you can see a couple from Pierce county.


We had pizza tonight…Canadian Bacon… good stuff. 

My newest Nephew swallowed a nickel today…after a visit to the hospital, he is better.  We all hope he gets a good night’s sleep and also hope he has learned a lesson.  Of course, while I do care for his safety and love him very much, my sense of humor cannot help but rear its ugly head:  Maybe he thought it was time for a change.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Room With a View


So, the other day I heard a jet and went to investigate.  I ended up upon a nearby ridge and found the jet.  An F-15 was making runs.  I took some photos.  Then I looked behind me and…this is what I saw.  The day was hazy, but I think it showed well.  It was a simple matter of point and click…


It’s been a decent week.  I am feeling more and more ready to return to school.  It may be the fact that I have been around the same guys all summer.  It may be the fact that now everyone is returning to the district and it is more difficult to find a quiet place to work.  I am certain another part is that I am just missing the kids. 

Tomorrow we have some “beginning of the year” meetings.  Most likely “what not to do” meetings.  There are two spaced through the day and it should make working on any particular project difficult.  Of course, the morning meeting will see DONUTS!!

Tuesday, August 24, 2010


As a historian, and a human, really, it has always been a curiosity to me how time is defined, how it feels and is experienced by men, and how it is to look back on an event. For some reason, today it occurred to me that were I to be transported one hundred years into the past, it would be 1910. The Civil War would have ended nine years before the year of my birth.

I once read some letters from a relative of mine. His name was Eli. He had taken part in one, or more, of the battles of the Civil War, Bull Run or some such if memory serves me correctly, which, in all likelihood, it doesn’t. He had written the state department concerning rheumatism that he claimed he got from sleeping on the cold ground during his service. I DO recall the dates of the letters ranging from 1908-1913. To put that in a more easily imaginable context, at least for me, it is like a Vietnam vet trying to get payment for medical treatments for a malady he got from his time in the service in the early days of Vietnam. Eli was turned down by the US Government. Today, I suspect, he would have had more luck getting his rheumatoid treatments covered.

I guess the thing that got me mulling this subject over was the book I was reading. It was “Wild Blue” written by an author some historians feel dubious about, Stephen Ambrose. Some suspect he made up some of his facts and sources. That is a BAD thing to do if you are a historian. We don’t do that. If we do, well, we get called names, we get our credentials stomped on, and other historians make little voo doo dolls of us to stick pins in…or, at least, that’s what I visualize happening. Anyway, in this book, he wrote about a particular B-24 crew from WWII; that of the 1972 Presidential hopeful, George McGovern. His description is well conceived and, thus far, it is a decent read. I have had this copy for several years, but due to the attitudes of my fellow historians I was reluctant to open it. Tonight, though, I was bored and I had run out of books.

That’s not true. I have several books in line. I just didn’t feel like any of them. Do you ever get that?

So, anyway, how do you visualize time? Have you lived so much of it that it doesn’t matter? I never thought I would be able to look back on my life and use words like “Ten years,” or “twenty Years,” or, god forbid, “Thirty YEARS!” But, today, I can do that. I can remember a specific day, thirty years ago. It was the eruption of Mount St. Helens.

I just find the linear approach to time interesting. If we weren’t intended to revisit it, why would we remember?

And, just so you don’t think I’ve misplaced my D-90, here is another photo.


Monday, August 23, 2010

Some pictures.


So, here’s a question: Do you like me putting pictures up?  Do you even notice that I haven’t written a long tirade or list of the things I have done in the past week or so?


I went for a short drive after work today…I took these photos.


I like this one.


Sunday, August 22, 2010

Send in the Clowns…Fish!

Sometimes you need to have a bit of humor.  Sometimes a clown isn’t just weird.  This is the only case where I have discovered Clowns are O.K.  Clownfish.  I like them.


The big one is the female, the small one is a male.  They are a mating pair.



We have had a very good weekend!  We took it easy yesterday, apart from visiting with our friends.  We did some minor things around the house.  Today was similar.  I began working on the sign yesterday, and continued today.  Here is how it is coming along, so far.  Not too bad so far.


Cora decided to paint the two columns on our front porch.  They have been plain old cedar for the past ten years, but we have tossed the idea of painting them for awhile.  Cora got the idea to do it today.  I think she started with good intentions.


She got more, I think, than she bargained for, though.  Fortunately, I was holding my camera at that particular moment…


She had a good attitude, though.


Now, we await the product of the grill!!  Pork chops, Corn on the cob, and my version of french fries!  Bound to be good!!

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Pooped Pup.


So, I convinced Toby to stay put for a portrait, and this is what I got.  I kinda like it.

Cora and I had lunch with some of my friends from school.  I have not seen either of these people for a very long time!  It was good getting caught up again. 


Dave, I haven’t seen for about 20 years or more.  Kathy, well, it’s closer to 18 years, but still, way too long.  It was good to see them again!


Friday, August 20, 2010

Lunch Surprise


I come home for lunch and usually let the dog in for a while.  Today, I did that and this is what I noticed.  Please remember this dog is supposed to be a WHITE dog with brown spots.  NOT a while dog with brown spots and SMUDGES!!


Oh, well, it is proof that he was out sunbathing again…in the dirt.

I had an interview at a local school yesterday.  I felt good about it.  I did not get it.  My suspicion is the person that got it had more experience.  My question is how am I to GET experience so I can get hired if I don’t get hired???  Oh, well.  I already have sub requests long before the school year begins.  I will be busy.

I came home today and looked up.  This is what I saw.  These clouds were of interesting texture.  I thought I’d share.


Thursday, August 19, 2010



Cora made Beef Stroganoff last night.  It was delicious.  Here she is in the kitchen.  I was using a telephoto, so I was out of her reach.  She is particularly unhappy about me being in the kitchen when she’s cooking, so I avoid it.  It’s better for my health.

I had an interview today.  I think I did well, but you never know for sure until they call.

I have done a very good job of keeping our back yard looking good this year.  I have not kept all the weeds down.  I HAVE kept at least one for show.  I may not have the biggest tomato, or the biggest squash, but look at this Kochia!  It’s got to be almost 9 feet tall!  After a little looking on-line I discovered that it is described as coming to the US as an “ornamental” from China in the early 1900’s.  According to the site I found, Kochia came to Washington State in about 1980.  Each plant has the possibility of producing about 14,000 seeds with a 76% viability!!  The roots can go 16 feet down!  If I had known this was such a bad weed…well, I would still have let this one grow…but maybe I would have been a little more generous with the weed killer elsewhere.  For the record, the internet says it grows UP TO seven feet tall, but that fence is six foot.


I should find out tomorrow afternoon whether I got the job.  I’ll not hold my breath.  Still, I feel good about it.

This is for Cora.  This is a visitor/homeowner in our garden…prickly, huh?


Work again tomorrow…more furniture moving.  On the bright side, I do get to operate heavy machinery.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Heating Up!

It was a hot day.  I did some running around, and I saw some smoke.  Well, you know, where there’s smoke, there’s fire.  Sure enough!!  I JUST HAPPENED to have my Precious D-90 with me, so I decided to investigate.  I like this first picture, because of the little fire engine sign at the lower right.


And…look at this one!!   I think this little girl was surprised by the fire, too!


Luckily, Yakima’s finest were there already!


FIRE!!!  Was in a building.  I joined the other on-lookers, gawking at the spectacle.  The difference was, instead of using my cell phone to record it, I was using a D-90!


The policeman there said I could take pictures as long as I didn’t get in the way.  I suppose that was his way of saying, “don’t go running into that flaming building kid.”


The smoke went quite a ways up!


At one point they were trying to keep the walls cooled.


The flames continued.  The closed down one of the main roads in town.  The warehouse stored furniture.


fire9 fire10

These last two were taken from four miles away.  Cora said she could see it from down in the VALLEY!!

fire11 fire12