Cave Dwellings: May 2010
Cave Dwellings

Buckhorn Creek, Lake O' The Pines, Jefferson, TX

Monday, May 31, 2010

A Day For Reflecting On Those We’ve Lost….

  As I have said before, I spent most of my teenage “growing up” years living in Oak Ridge Cemetery.  This is the largest cemetery around here, and my Dad was the “sexton”, which is a fancy word for caretaker.  Mom, Dad, my baby brother (by 4 years) and I ,lived in the home provided.. sitting right in the middle of lost loved ones to sooo many families. I remember Memorial Day as a really big deal.  Flags were placed on all of the veterans graves by the local VFW, and Dad and the cemetery crew planted the flower beds with tons of annual flowers.  There is a huge cannon in the middle of the cemetery, with stacked old original cannonballs.  This is where the VFW honor guard still does the 21 gun salute and plays taps every Memorial Day.  (I can’t help but cry every time I hear taps played.)

Sooooo true...

…This quote was hanging in the Pima Air Museum…and it really struck me as soooo profound the day I saw it…

On a lighter note, we had Terrie’s family over yesterday and Papa cooked burgers and sausages out on the grill.  It is hard to entice that crew over to Grandma and Papa’s on a 90 degree day…they have an above the ground pool at their house.

  Today it is suppose to rain and cool off.  I am very sure it will, because I just got done watering all of my flowers…

100_6951 100_6946



Yesterday morning Dennis went out and loaded all of the cut wood into our little mower cart, took it out and stacked it with the gazillion other pieces.  This is how our backyard looks now…

100_6954  Still need to cut up that big piece, but that won’t happen today.  Paul Bunyan and his “BABE” need a rest.  It turns out there was one casualty in the tree felling experience….one big fat Hosta….


I don’t think this little incident will hardly stifle it’s growth.  If you have ever grown Hostas you know that they will grow out from under anything…You almost cannot kill them.  This dude isn’t ready for a eulogy yet, he still has lots of life left in him.  Once the tree is cut off I am sure he will spring back and be almost as good as new!


I noticed some new boxes in our garage and had a feeling there is a new project coming up soon….This looks like siding for our garage to me….hmmmmm….


Looks like I need to brush up on my handing off, holding up and hammering skills…..



Above is my Kachina, White Wolf Man, signed and dated  ‘92 on the bottom by Bilger Charlie, Jr.  My grandkids aren’t so sure about this guy.  He is a little scary, but he is a proud wolf hunter, and he graces a special spot on my mantle .  I think he keeps away evil spirits…

  Thanks again for reading clear to this point!! More Wednesday…

Saturday, May 29, 2010


  Yesterday “Paul Bunyan” and I “felled” a dead tree that was hanging over our backyard..(yes, Dennis does have other names than McGuyver).  We didn’t do our usual 2 mile walk in the morning because we figured cutting up wood and hauling it would qualify as exercise.  This tree was pretty damn tall, and “Paul” and I had a disagreement as to whether it would hit our RECENTLY planted garden…Here is the tree before we attacked it..(or I should say Dennis did).

100_6930  100_6931

It may look close to our camper, but never fear, Paul Bunyan knew how to make the initial cuts ,so it didn’t flatten the Hiker.

100_6932 100_6933 100_6935

…clik the pic to enlarge…



TIMBER!!!!!! Notice Mr. Paul Bunyan in the left corner as it went down..Oh, me??? Where was I??? I was cowering behind another tree with my camera, of course..And….here is proof that I should NEVER doubt Den’s judgement in felling a tree…

100_6939…it never hit the garden, but it DID come close…Den said “close” didn’t count. Below is the whole darn tree….all over our yard.  Looks like lots of work to me. I got out my rake and garden gloves and got at it.  Den handled the chain saw and I picked up the sticks.  Gosh, I wonder why he didn’t ask ME to to the chainsawing???? As a matter of fact, if Dennis is Paul Bunyan, does that make me Babe the Blue Ox?? At one point in my life I may have been a “Babe”, at least to Den, but those days are looooong gone!!


We worked on the tree all morning, and I had to shower up and leave by 12:30….REALLY, I DID!! I had to go sit with Terrie’s boys while she went to the Dr.’s office for a test.  Dennis continued on with the cutting until 3PM..By then he said he felt like someone had beat him to death, so he called it a day.  He really got lots done, though…and his back was totally sunburned!



  This morning we started in again, working from 8AM until 1PM….Here is how it looked when we finished….We need to start a business…”Trees Are Us”.

100_6941 I took a big jug of water out and 2 chairs so we could stay hydrated and have a loll in the shade occasionally…

100_6942 100_6943

No, Paul Bunyan wasn’t crabby, just tired….And here is yet another of my “stylish” looks….I have soooo many “uniforms”.  All in all , we managed to get most of the wood cut up.  There is still the big trunk part of the tree for Paul to attack, but that will have to wait for another day…Paul and his “babe” are bone tired and in bad need of a shower before we embark on our usual Saturday night “date” .  I see a couple cocktails at the Moose Lodge and some Gene’s Chicken carry outs in our future.

I do want to close by saying a “thank you” to all of the wonderful veterans out there who gave up so much to allow us to stay free.  I’m not usually a Billy Ray Cyrus fan, but his song “All Gave Some, Some Gave All”, really hits home at this time of year… I have my sidewalk lined with US flags…So many young men and women are risking their lives so we can enjoy sweet liberty…Thank you all for serving our great country…and have a safe Memorial Day.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

A Tour of the Dwellings


This morning Den and I went to the McDole Grade School for our 6 year old grandson’s graduation from Kindergarten…Did we ever get a “graduation” from that year in school??? I’m pretty sure they just handed me a report card, patted me on the head and said “Next year you will be here ALL DAY!!”, which scared the bejesus out of me..What?? No nap on my rug??? Then I ‘m not coming to first grade!

100_6924 100_6926 100_6920

  I spent yesterday weeding my flower beds, trying to beat the predicted rain.  I spent from 9AM until 2PM outside (with 1/2 hour for lunch)…Geez, you would think I had to punch in and out the way I just put it…Dennis mowed the grass, and we got it all done just in time..About 3PM the sky opened up, and I could almost feel the mosquitoes, spiders and gnats hatching out.  The minute I even say those words I begin to scratch.  Seems like I actually DID get some nasty spider bites on both arms, and they swelled up into big itchy lumps…(I spared you the disgusting  picture of this.) 



We had another warm and sunny day today. I have my front porch finally cleaned off so we can have our coffee on it in the mornings after our walk.

100_6886 100_6887

…here is the rest of the nickel tour of the Cave Dwellings (the permanent one)…

100_6889 100_6890 100_6893

left to right…East end of living room, dining area, new HD TV

100_6894  100_6891 100_6892

…West end of living room, kitchen and finally kitchen eating area…

We normally don’t have that computer screen on our kitchen table, but we are copying a genealogy program from our old computer to the newer one…

  I don’t have much exciting to blog about today…Basically our life is about as exciting as watching paint dry. Looks like this Memorial Day weekend is going to be great weather so we are having a picnic with our whoever of our family isn’t working..Health care, fire dept., police people…it’s hard to get them all together! Update on the Wren newlyweds..They almost had the moving truck pulling up to move out after a squirrel knocked their birdhouse on the ground…But, Dennis came to the rescue and made more secure,  so an overweight rodent wouldn’t knock it down again.  I think they were watching from the tree because as soon as he hung it back up, they were right back. They flew in and out with little sticks..Their nest probably ended up in the ceiling of their little abode and they had to re-do it.

Well, thanks for trying to stay awake through this episode.  You can wake up now and check out a more lively blog!!! I WILL not give this up, though.   I definitely plan on poking you again on Saturday!

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

A Few Musings From a Cave Dweller

  Yesterday I met some friends for lunch in Geneva, IL.  I would have taken my camera, but I didn’t think they would appreciate it.  For the last 2 days we have had really HOT weather…96 degrees today! The older I get the less I like the hot days..I have enough “hotness” going on within my body , all coming in flashes!  I came back from coffee with my Ya Ya’s and found Dennis putting fence around our garden.


.It seems the rabbits found our pepper plants quite tasty when eaten with our lettuce..”Be vewy vewy quiet..We awre hunting wabbits” quote Elmer Fudd. (The fact that I am actually quoting him concerns me a little.)

  Boy ,there has been lots of discussion about the problem with illegal's crossing the border in Arizona…I have to say, we had been totally naive, living here in the Midwest, not experiencing what the Arizonians are going through. That all changed this year when we spent 2 months in Ajo, Arizona.  It is a real eye opener to take a nice walk into the Sonoran Desert and find discarded clothing, food, cans, water bottles, diapers, …and it seems this is not unusual! After living in it for only a few short months, I totally understand the anguish of the local residents.  It seems to me we should put some of those troops in Afghanistan right here on our border…The Border Patrol is overworked, and totally overrun with the plethora of people who sneak across the US/Mexico border, not to mention the drugs and dealers.

100_4715  100_5511 100_5510


On a lighter note, Mr.and Mrs. Wren are done real estate shopping and decided to take up housekeeping in our little Wren house outside our kitchen windows….YEA!!! He sits most of the day and sings his little heart out on top his house…Every once in a while he leaves, then comes back, enters the house for about 15 seconds, then comes out and resumes singing.  According to my research, he is probably feeding his mate, who is cleaning, doing dishes, making beds…all at the same time she is sitting on her eggs. What a woman!  And…ya GOTTA’ like a man who makes sure his woman is well fed!~

100_6882 100_6883

100_6870 100_6872

..Delphinium on left, Icelandic Poppy on the right..I need a few more of those and I could have a little home based “business”…JUST KIDDING!..You have to understand my sick humor.

Below used to be the one and only stoplight in our town….


….and now we have about 10…AND, of course, no modern suburb would be complete without Mickey D’s!!



Well, I have again succeeded in blabbering on about stuff of absolutely NO consequence….It is again almost 90 degrees today, and if this thunderhead is any indicator, we are in for some storms later…..


We’ll talk again on Thursday….Thanks so much for tolerating my insanity.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Raccoon Adventures sans photos..DRAT!

Tim and Peyton 2   

Tim and Peyton at Wrigley Field to see the Cubs.



Yesterday morning I did my 2 mile walk and ended up at one of my Ya Ya’s houses for morning coffee. All my Ya ya’s and their husbands were there.  Lynda makes the most fabulous caramel rolls..homemade…and they were all gone when we left…Dennis stayed home to see about going to his Uncle’s house to help with a chimney problem…. About 9:30 AM, we  did end up having to address the chimney problem, so we drove up to Den’s Aunt and Uncle’s house in Montgomery, about 20 miles away.  They were having some issues with leaking around their chimney..McGuyver took his tool belt and ladder and away we went up onto the roof.  I forgot my camera, which is a cardinal sin of a good blogger….Al doesn’t go ANYWHERE without his , I’ll betcha!

Anyway, after going up on their roof, Dennis discovered there was a raccoon down inside the chimney…And he tried EVERYTHING  to get him out…Finally we decided that lighting a fire in their fireplace may drive him out…and it did, temporarily. He looked out, turned around and went right back down.…But, I had no pictures to document it. DAMN! It turns out when Den went back on Sunday,  Mr. Raccoon was still there, alive and well , making a condo out of the chimney.… While we were there, Dennis took the plastic covering off their screen room and cleaned out their gutters of the garage.  They are ages 86 and 94…and still live in their own home…unbelievable.  It is always lots of fun to visit them…Wine is almost always involved..Don’t ask me how, but they can drink me under the table every time!

  We got home and decided to order some pizza for dinner. Actually, yesterday was my 62nd birthday..and we had a fun day. Our weather has turned lots warmer and sunny.   This morning I have to drive into Lisle for a baby shower, so this may be the extent of the blog..unless something CRAZY happens soon!!


That would be Dennis, combining corn last fall…

Happy Birthday to me…..Last night by the campfire.

100_6866 My 62nd birthday


Friday, May 21, 2010

Veggie Garden Planted?…CHECK!

  Yesterday we got the dirt worked up and put in our small little vegetable garden.  Den had tilled it up Wednesday evening, so yesterday morning we worked fast to beat the rain…

100_6849 100_6859

We had a little help from Mr. Robin Red Breast…The minute the soil was worked up, so was he.  He was so busy pulling worms out of the dirt he didn’t even mind us planting around him. We almost had to kick him out of the way.

We put in some onions, lettuce and radishes.  I had some seed potatoes that were on sale at WalMart..probably because it was now waaay too late to plant them, but I never pass up a bargain.  I had no idea how to plant potatoes, but I sure know how to EAT them. Den took over the potato planting.. We have a few tomatoes, green peppers and jalapenos we didn’t stick in the ground. We can’t plant them yet because Dennis is going to “fell” a dead tree in our yard.  Actually, it’s the neighbor’s tree, but it hangs on our property.  He figures it will fall precariously close to our garden, so we won’t plant the remaining plants until the tree comes down.  I think this should happen this very soon…and that will supply more “blog fodder”..

  100_6845 100_6846

Two is company…Three gets a little “testy” in the bathtub…

When we are way, way out in our backyard, all the way to the end of our bowling alley shaped lot, we get a clear view of the gazillion trains that travel through.  This is Amtrak coming by….. I am looking toward town.


We have an average of 2-3 trains an hour go by , 24/7….When we bought our home in 1975, there was, maybe, 1 train every 3 hours..if that.  Lots of the Burlington Northern freights have up to 100 coal cars, going into Chicago.  A new crossing just went in about 2 blocks from our back yard, so now the trains blow their horns directly behind our houses here…This does NOT make for good sleeping in the summer when our windows are open. (We don’t like central air). That is becoming a huge “bone of contention” in our little town…trying to get a “NO TRAIN HORN” zone. Lots of people are complaining of the noise…We even have trouble talking on the phone when they are going by.

100_6850 100_6851 100_6852

Above is a view of our neighbor’s house from the back of their yard..Our house is just barely visible on the left…This is their climbing Clematis..She also has tons of beautiful roses..

Below is our pile of firewood…all of it hand cut by McGuyver…We burn a fire most every evening.

100_6857….McGuyver gathered or cut all of this wood from trees around here.  Anytime someone has a tree to cut, they know who to call.  Below is another tree that will eventually be horizontal..As you can see, it is dead as a doornail…AND this one is also on the neighbor’s property to our West.  Notice the branch caught precariously in the other branches..That branch ended up in that position after a microburst went through a couple years ago.   I really don’t let our grandkids play anywhere near it…It could come down anytime, which is why Dennis wants to take that one down ASAP!..and our neighbor is OK with it.


  Well, it is no  time to marinate some steaks for dinner…I also need to highlight my hair…That is one expense I am glad I don’t have to endure..You can’t keep an old hairdresser on the shelf..and I cannot BELIEVE the mark up on hair services!!!! Luckily I can still do my own haircuts and color jobs…(However, it sometimes it totally looks like I “do it myself”, too!!) More later….thanks for following along!