http://www.blogger.com/html?blogID=4316350785635987648 Cave Dwellings: February 2011

Our Brand New Cougar....

Our Brand New Cougar....
Aug. 10th, 2003

Monday, February 28, 2011

THE ICE MACHINE STRIKES AGAIN!!

100_9495  Soooo I had this really bad dream.   I dreamed we were being pelted by little ice pellets that were sticking to our truck windshield and turning our deck  into an ice rink ,yet again…and.. I FORGOT MY ICE SKATES!!!.. Hey, we were in Arizona..land of sunshine and blue skies, weren’t we??   When I finally managed to pry my eyelids open yesterday morning, I realized that the REAL truth was the fact that I really DID need my ice skates…and I really DIDN’T  have them.  I could only hope that when I took Sosa out to pee, he wouldn’t pull me across our deck by his leash ….much like a crazy woman water skiing behind a runaway boat.  He didn’t ….but I really did need my ice skates.

  Saturday night ,( date night for all you home gamers),  McGuyver and I went to our usual “haunt” , The Moose Lodge, for our weekly date/cocktail hour…Turns out those ice pellets on our windshield were ALSO not just part of a bad dream ..they were part of a driving experience.  OK, I know …I’m in Illinois!! I am a born and raised Illinoisan!!!  I should be hardened like a pillar of salt (from all the salt I have waded through on our streets over time)..I cannot help it if my parents chose the state of Illinois to raise a family, and I should have left Illinois to go to college…(but we could only afford  Elgin Illinois Community College)….And hey, after meeting Dennis,  I REALLY didn’t want to leave Illinois…AND….once we got hitched and Dennis got a great job with great benefits at Caterpillar Tractor in Montgomery Illinois ..(and once we started having the really BIG expense..kids)…we were locked in to living in the “Land of Lincoln”….BUT WE NOW HAVE THE CHOICE TO LEAVE….AND IF WE DON’T ….WELL, IT’S OUR OWN DAGNAB FAULT…RIGHT????  Whew…I feel much better now…A good rant every so often is needed for mental health.

  Yesterday was a very slow day in the “Cave”…Sosa has pretty much been running the house….He sleeps on the couch, knocks over his water dish, eats his food piece by piece in the living room, jumps up for an occasional head pat, gets a treat every time he poops outside, and barks at the wafting curtains when our heat turns on.  

100_9491Right now he is on the couch with McGuyver …. in MY spot, watching the NASCAR race….Ya just can’t make this stuff up…He is DA KIND DOG!!

100_9480 Kelly and Cindy will be home tomorrow evening, and Sosa will get picked up by the “limo” Tuesday morning..I must remember to make sure he gets his morning paper and dog treat to take with him.

When we went to the Moose Lodge Saturday night, we saw some guys outside milling around a fire (as guys will do when they get in a group)…..And was that grilled baby back ribs I smelled??

100_9478We then realized that it was Arctic Cook Out night.  This means that some of the more brave, ( albeit slightly less wise),  Mooses will stand outside and cook ribs and pork chops to feed the Mooses and Moosettes who are waiting inside,  ..drinking , laughing, staying warm . (I could visual is them with knives and forks in the upright position just waiting)…Naturally, we went in to join the wiser Mooses.  But I have to say, I have seen McGuyver standing out by our grill, clutching an umbrella in a downpour…or in his snowmobile suit, in deep snow, cooking his little “less wise” Moose behind off!!!

  We decided to opt out of the feed, as usual, to just have our few cocktails and pick up a pizza on the way home…As I have stated before, we are not “diners out”…We are “drinkers out” once a week,  following it up with “carry out”…It’s just our style.

  This morning I have a “dreaded” appointment with the local Podiatrist to discuss my foot issues…yet again.  This time I am going armed with questions, my walking shoes, and a bad attitude. I want NO surgery, and if I have to get another shot of steroids, I want to be knocked out (just kidding) ..But that shot really really REALLY HURT!! .. AND THEN THE DOC MOVED THAT NEEDLE AROUND AND AROUND ONCE INSIDE MY HEEL.  YOWZA!!!…I have been doing research on the internet, which can be a very dumb thing to do…but..I did find out that I have “supination”…This means that I walk with my feet rolling outwards…and explains why I wear the outsides of my soles down .

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Those crocks , above, are my “go to” shoes when I get out of bed in the morning until I go to bed at night…They are so cushy, it really pads my heel when walking.  I gotta “fess up” and say that I even where them to WalMart for groceries…Hey, maybe I’ll end up in one of those “Wally Word” photo galleries and become famous.  If the Maxine photos don’t work, there’s always that!

Before I forget, Sue Malone asked me what kind of camera I used for the lady Cardinal photo in my last blog…like I am some great camera buff..I had to look on the camera bottom to see…DUH!…It is a KODAK EASYSHARE DX 7590 Zoom Digital Camera with a 10X Zoom….We’ve had it about 6 years and would LOVE a newer one, but this seems to suffice for now…Thanks, Sue, for giving me a HUGE head and making me believe I am Ansel Adams …

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Ice again ….on our deck, our front porch screens…up close and personal..

 

These were taken this morning this morning, Monday, at 6:45AM…Sammy and I slid down the back steps for “potty call”…(that would be for Sammy, not me..)..This was after Sammy slept upstairs by our bed due to the to thunder last night…He slept on the floor by my side…but only after he tried to sleep IN our bed with us!!..Sorry, Sam….that’s a deal breaker for the Cave Dwellers…We had thunder, lightening, rain, then ice to top it all off…I HATE ICE..!

OK…time for my appointment with the foot Doc…Not that anyone cares, but I’ll be lettin’ ya know if I get the needle again..if I pass out..or if I my head spins around and I tout expletives at the poor man….

I WANT MY FOOT BACK!!!

Saturday, February 26, 2011

“Remember Goliad”…Part of Texas History..

  I sure wish we were in Goliad Texas this March.  I would love to be there for the re-enactment of the Goliad Massacre at the Presidio La Bahia…

There is a deep history associated with this old fort.  It is where General  James Fannin and his troops were marched out and massacred by Santa Anna’s Mexican troops…AFTER they had surrendered and thought they would be held a while and then sent home.  Actually, 342 men of General Fannin’s troops were slaughtered and 28 managed to escape..We have never been there for the Goliad re-enactment, but I would LOVE to see it someday.  The town of Goliad is seething with history…Make sure to put it on your “Do It, Dammit” list….(my term for “Bucket List”).

 

 

The first time we visited Goliad, in 2006, we decided to stay at Goliad State Park, which has 2 different campgrounds…One is in a lower area of park, and we stayed there for one week…

It had water and electric, was cheap to stay..but it was just a huge parking lot with a little grass…So we decided to move and spend the second week up by the Mission Espiritu Santo , which is located right next to the camping area…

This mission is very beautiful and you can tour it anytime for free when you stay at the campground in the park..

This campground area was MUCH improved from out first one in the parking lot….We had lots of trees, there are many places to walk, and the Mission was only steps away .  They have school kids touring all the time and they always ring the Mission bells when they are there..I LOVED hearing those bells..

You can also walk from the campground on a wooden walkway into the town…about 1 1/2 miles….

THE HANGING TREE, LEFT, IN FRONT OF THE OLD COURTHOUSE…

NOT A GOOD TIME TO BE A BAD GUY…NOT GOOD AT ALL!

 

 

One of the things I dearly LOVE about Texas is the “town squares”…  It is so common to most Texas towns and you can always find some neat shops and cafes around the square…and sometimes a rocking chair to rest in..

Well, I hope I haven’t put these photos on in an earlier blog, but if I have I apologize..As I have said before, they don’t call me Dementia Donna for nothing….

McGuyver and I are “dog sitting” for Sammy Sosa until Tuesday.  Our son’s wife, Cindy (the one who removed McGuyver’s staples…and the one who just had an abutment put behind her ear)…anyway..Cindy’s Grandma passed away and they made a driving trip to Georgia Friday morning…

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I TRIED TO GET SAMMY SOSA TO SMILE FOR THE CAMERA, BUT THE BEST HE COULD DO WAS LOOK LIKE A DEMON DOG , AKIN TO THE EXORCIST…(PLEASE NOTE THAT HE HAS TAKEN OVER OUR HOUSE, AND IS CURLED UP ON OUR COUCH…WHERE I NORMALLY SIT..)

ME THINKS SOSA AND MYSELF MIGHT HAVE TO PLAY “MUSICAL COUCH” TONIGHT TO SEE WHO GETS THIS PRIZED SEAT IN FRONT OF THE TV…IF SOSA WINS, I SUPPOSE WE’LL HAVE TO TURN ON ANIMAL PLANET…OR….MAYBE I COULD SNEAK IN “THE DOG WHISPERER”…AND SOSA COULD LEARN A FEW THINGS, SUCH AS WHO IS THE BOSS AROUND HERE!!…..DOUBTFUL.

 

SEE YA IN A COUPLE DAYS…THANKS FOR CHECKIN’ IN!

HEY…WAKE UP..I’M DONE!!!

Thursday, February 24, 2011

“THE HERMIT” DOES IT AGAIN!!

  If you remember on one of my posts about Alaska, I had a photo of my Aunt and Uncle on the Alaskan Highway…It was an old, washed out photo, and I tried to tweak it with the Picasa program as best I could….Then along comes “The Hermit”, A.K.A. Robert Hoy,  he enhances it, and it looked fabulous..Well,…. remember the photo of my Grandmother’s graduation class of 1898??… pretty faded and washed out….Suddenly, in swoops “The Hermit” on my email and I opened up the photo ….WALA!!!

 graduating class 1898

                                 ….BEFORE…..                                                                   ….AFTER….

ROBERT HOY, YOU ARE A MAGICIAN…KUDOS TO YOUR WORK…I AM VERKLEMPT….

Early this week,  I was called to the Heiser homestead in Sugar Grove to shear a few sheep…..Their “wool” was just about long enough to make a blanket…

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SHEEP #1….MUCH BETTER…..

 

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SHEEP #2….CLEANS UP PRETTY GOOD, EH?

Those 2 boys have hair  like their Mom and Dad…LOTS!  Every so often I have to buzz ‘em to keep them looking civilized…Their Dad, Tim, won’t let me touch his “do”…He demands a Cop’s flattop (very Narc looking), and I am NOT a barber…He is a wise detective NOT to let me near his scalp!

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Things have been pretty calm here in Sandwich.  We have a pair of Cardinals who are frequenting our safflower seed feeder.  The male is illusive about getting his picture taken, but his bride is quite the ham…even with her mouth full

 

I saw the first Purple Finch yesterday, so McGuyver hung out our thistle seed feeder .  (He was too fast for a photo)…I am hoping for more of them soon…but they may have to wear their parkas and mukluks a bit longer, here in “the Great White North”…2-6” of snow due here tonight…whatever….

 

Tuesday we actually caught a glimpse of sunshine, albeit fleetingly…The minute I saw a sparkle from my window prisms in the kitchen, I ran for the camera and almost knocked Dennis off the computer chair getting to the door for a photo…

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The gray stormy clouds parted just long enough to give us a quick glimpse of blue sky….and then they slammed shut again…leaving me standing there, expounding in expletives for all the neighbors to hear…Are you suppose to cuss at “Weather Gods”???  I sure hope I didn’t jinx us for another 2 feet of snow…OK, I APOLOGIZE…REALLY, REALLY , REALLY I DO!!!  I sure hope they heard me..I ‘m quite sure the whole neighborhood did!!!!

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“Before” pictures of the train car restaurant….

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After pics…..

… A little update on the Bull Moose Bar and Grille (train car restaurant).  It is coming along very nicely.  Above is the entrance…It sure looks different than it did last summer…Dennis and I are eagerly anticipating the opening…as is everyone else in town…Although I  do have a  sinking feeling that we will need to sell the Hiker just to afford a meal and drinks in there.

  I’ve made lots of progress in my genealogy research by using a website called  Family Search.  This site is a FREE site to research on (which is hard to come by)..I have found my Grandma Ross’s name on a 1900 census taken in Elgin, IL…I also found out she had a younger sister  I never knew about…and that her father was a War veteran and served in the 23rd Union Battalion of Indiana….He died when my Grandma was only 15 years old, in 1895…This information really rocked me back on my heels…I’m so glad Dennis and I got involved in our family histories….

Hey, I want to welcome another brave follower, Erik and Ronda….You are welcome to get onboard…If we ever get this GMC and Hiker on the road again, you can sit by the window for a while…It will be your turn…And by the looks of the diesel prices, we’ll have to sell the FARM to drive that rig across the street….Oh well…as my Grandma used to say…

“SUCH IS LIFE”…..

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

TAKING A PEEK INTO THE PAST..MAKES US WHO WE ARE NOW.

  Dennis and I have a program on our computer called My Heritage Family Tree.  We have a TON of information in plastic boxes in our basement just loaded with old photos and family information.  My maiden name was Ross, my Mom’s mother’s maiden name was Fry, and her Mom was a Roush…Dennis, of course, is the Cave-man,  his Mom’s maiden name was Bark, and her Mom was an Arnold..This stuff can get REAL complicated as it goes on, and on, and on…..It’s like digging for gold…

Crystal Lake, IL High School graduating class of 1898….

My Grandma Maude A. Ross (Harnish) is standing, back row on the left.

We are very blessed to have a gazillion old photos on both sides of our family.  Some of the photos are even “tin types”..Unfortunately many of the photos are not labeled and we are trying to sort that out who they are..BUT, some of the old photos DO have names written of the back, so we can see exactly WHO is in the photos…Please, please, please …do your kids a favor and remember to put names on the back of photos so they know who the heck these strangers are when us “older duffers” are “blowin’ in the wind”…

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Left is Christmas at Grandma and Grandma Bark’s house (Den’s fraternal grandparents)…Note the big bunch of mistletoe hanging in the top of the photo…Far right is Den’s maternal Grandma and Grandpa, Clarence and Jenny Bark… Middle photo is Aunt Jeanette ,(yes, THAT Aunt Jeanette, the one we still visit) ,holding a ceramic giraffe…and she still has that giraffe sitting of her coffee table.  The photo on the right is Den’s Mom, Katherine…and Dad, Cam (Ben Campbell Cave)….We really treasure these great old photos…

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Check out the little Shasta camper in this one….Left is Uncle Jr., middle is Aunt Jeanette, and right is Den’s Dad, Cam….

 

The Shasta travel trailer was Jr .and Jeanette’s little gem, and they used to take their two dogs, Pomeranians, with them on ALL their travels ….They had no kids, but they sure showered lots of love on those dogs…

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                                      Dennis’s Dad in front of the Shasta….He never owned a pair of jeans or sneakers in his life..

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Here is Aunt Jeanette grooming one of their dogs on the picnic table…They had 2 different pairs of Pomeranians…The first 2 dogs passed away and they got 2 more…Always a pair, and always one male and one female….I know LOTS of RV’ers out there are traveling with their furry kids, too…

 

 

 

 

 

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Above left is my Dad, Don Ross. He could play the violin,( but didn’t want too many people to know that.) He could also play the Jew's Harp  , also known as the Ozark Harp..The name of this instrument has nothing to do with Jewish people…It is thought to be one of the oldest musical instruments in the world, and was common to Asians and also common in Turkey…The link has a photo of the one just like we had in our home..Our son, Kelly, now has it…I don’t know what ever happened to Dad’s violin…I sure wish I had it, though…

That handsome couple on the right is MY Mom and Dad, Don and Cora Ross….God, how I miss them.

It is a wonderful gift to give oneself when you revisit your roots through photos and old documents.  As I said, we are lucky enough to have a volume of memorabilia , and we intend to save it for our kids….We are in the process of trying to get as many names on those old photos as possible.   It is soooooo important to listen when the “elders” start telling stories, too.  Better yet, get it on a audio if you can.  If you don’t do it, a LOT of family history could possibly be lost forever…And isn’t is strange ..the older we get, the more these things mean to us…???

    All of us have a history…some of it good, some not so good.  And I’m sure some of you out there either don’t care to know it, or aren’t into that kind of thing…But McGuyver and I are both really involved in finding out about our heritage…I just thought today I would share a tiny bit of it…After all……

…….IT’S WHO WE ARE…..