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Quote of the month...

"Standing tall is a very admirable thing. There are very few stories in history of heroes who slouched to the rescue. Likewise, most individuals don't look up to people who are drooped over."
from Leven Thumps and the Wrath of Ezra by Obert Skye

my family

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Foto Story Friday #51 -- Sprinklers

PhotoStory Friday
Hosted by Cecily and MamaGeek

We decided to put sprinklers in the yard.
Cody got picked to dig the trenches.

Next morningTroy had to finish up the trenching.
Then the fun started..... running the pipes
Gluing this end to that one and not forgetting to place the attachments for the sprinkler heads.

Scott was the glue man.
The others had to get in on the action!
Pounding the re-bar into the ground for the control panel.
Attaching the controls.
Back filling the trenches.
Even I got in on the back-filling!
All done!

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Foto Story Friday #50-- fishing genes

PhotoStory Friday
Hosted by Cecily and MamaGeek

Fishing Genes

This is my Grampa Sam circa 1973. There are many things that remind me of him. On Monday I didn't have any extra kids so Troy and I spent the day with the twins. We asked them what they wanted to do, go riding 4-wheelers or fishing. I think we were a little surprised when they both yelled "fishing!" Fishing as mentioned here, was one of Grampa's favorite past times.
Here's Grampa Sam sitting outside his home circa 1976. This was his typical attire... that hat and a button-down shirt. I wonder what he was thinking when this photo was snapped.... his garden, his bottles, his next fishing trip or had he just finished singing? I'll never know, I was only 2. One of our favorite things to hear him sing was the ZYX's. Grampa learned his alphabet both directions and he frequently sang them backwards to us kids. He would always ask if we'd learned our ZYX's yet. One time I sat down and did it, I learned them! I was SO proud of my self that I couldn't wait to show him. My sister also learned them we thought we were hot stuff. I remember Grampa was pleased with our accomplishment as well. Whenever I sing the ABC's I have to then sing my ZYX's! I've yet to convince my kids that it is a handy trick to have up ones sleeve. Point in case, in high school we had a history teacher who thought he could pull a fast one on the class. He told us to take out a sheet of paper, then he'd time us to see how many times we could write the alphabet backwards. I kicked butt! (the next year, Ryanne was excused from the exercise .... he wasn't going to be showed up twice!)
But this is a fishing story....
In the above photo, you can just see a man with a fish in the frame. That is Gramp Sam with one of his catches, surrounded by a poem my dad wrote about one of his fishing experiences.
Sam, the Rocks, and the Steelhead
When Sam retired, he moved
to Orofino with his wife.
Lucile worked at the hospital,
and fishing was Sam's life.
It was a good place to live
because the river was nearby,
but Sam did say you had to lie
on your back to see the sky.
The Clearwater River cut a deep
and narrow gorge through there.
To build the highway, they hauled
in boulders, large, jagged and bare.
Sam hiked up and down the river
with his fishing pole in hand.
They bought a little smoker and
Lucile smoked the fish Sam caught,
while Sam spent the day searching
for the very best fishing spot.
Before too long, Sam found what
became his favorite hole,
and those big rocks got acquainted
with Sam and his fishing pole.
Sam hooked a big steelhead one day
at his favorite fishing spot.
The fish was programmed to spawn
and was not about to be caught.
That lure Sam threw out there, that
looked so good, did not suit its taste,
so that fish postponed its spawning,
and headed downstream with haste.
Sam had no time to waste 'cause
that fish moved like a tornado.
The drag on his reel was maxed.
His line was short. Sam had to go.
Over those sharp rocks he scrambled,
he leaped, he stumbled and fell,
and whether he did a flip
or two, he said he could not tell.
But he chased after that fish
and never let go of his pole
until that trout finally
got tired and stopped at a hole.
Sam was standing there huffing
and puffing and looking around,
When he checked out his pole and line,
a huge knot is was he found.
That knot was the size of a baseball
and looked like spaghetti,
and if he untied that he'd rate
a parade of confetti.
With a snarl like that, there was
no way he could reel that fish in,
but for a fisherman, to let
that fish go would be a sin.
Sam found his pocket knife then
cut that line fore and aft that knot,
and the fish resting on the bottom,
was just as good as caught.
Calm as a cucumber, Sam then
tied those line ends together,
then began to work his reel
with a touch light as a feather.
That fish was no different
from the others after it was smoked,
but with each bite Sam ate,
memories of those rocks were evoked.
Copyright 1997 by Daren Flynn
(if interested in more poems by Daren Flynn contact me.)

I think my Grampa Sam's fishing genes got passed along to his great grandchildren. They sat there and waited for those darn fish to bite.
With patience and determination.
Hands at the ready.
But we got dogged.... I think they might have had better luck if I had not been along!

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Foto Story Friday #49 --- Chicken

PhotoStory Friday
Hosted by Cecily and MamaGeek

Since we are a train town, we often see trains parked on the sidelines. This is a road I often cross during the week. One day Cody and I were out shoe shopping, coming up with nothing that would fit him or his style, we went for a drive. It is difficult to just pull over my full suburban just to take pictures. (the kids get a little restless and attempt to climb out and run fast!) We took advantage of it just being the two of us. I felt a little odd walking along these engines parked here snapping photos, but I got over it and as I was leaving I turned and saw this:
Chicken anyone?!

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Foto Story Friday #48 -- Time Out For Women

PhotoStory Friday
Hosted by Cecily and MamaGeek

Last Friday Grandma, Shantel, Marlene and I headed off to Time Out For Women In Billings, MT.
We left around noon and it is a 3 hour drive. We needed lunch by the time we hit Miles City and Marlene suggested we have Mexican. If you have a reason to be in Miles City, have lunch or dinner here -- yummy!
Shantel tells us all something interesting while we wait for our lunches to arrive.
Long drives require a potty break so .... there was a full-length mirror and I had my camera!
We actually saw the sign as we were leaving Friday night. Pretty cool to see it on the huge marquee.
Shantel's first Time Out For Women (TOFW). She was pretty excited to attend. Grandma told her after the 2007 one that she could come this year. The Friday Line up went like this:
6:30 ish announcements and welcome
Musical presentation-- Hilary Weeks
Presenter-- Kristen Oaks
Musical presentation-- Jenny Oaks Baker
7:55 break and mingle
8:15 Musical presentation-- Jenny Oaks Baker
9:30 Event end
Friday Night we were blessed to have a "concert" with Jenny Oaks Baker, she was accompanied by Jessica. (sorry no last name, she didn't put it on the program she signed for Shantel.)
While standing in line to meet her I snapped this quick shot of her violin.
Jenny Oaks Baker was schooled at Jilliard and sat 1st chair with the National Symphony Orchestra for 7 years. She was amazing! We were not given much information on Jessica. They were a wonder to listen to.
Shantel and I with Kristen Oaks (step mom to Jenny). She was entertaining and she shared some nice stories.
Friday before I left home I got an e-mail from Melissa asking if I was coming to TOFW. I was excited that we could meet. (Picture was taken by Shantel on Saturday.) It was a little awkward at first but that soon passed as the weekend went on and we chatted on the breaks. So glad that we finally met after nearly 2 years of being blogging buddies! We are planning to get together the next time I'm down her way.
Here's most of the group from Glendive with Chris Stewart Saturday.
Shantel and I compare feet.
Saturday's line up went:
9 am welcome presentation
Music presentation-- Hilary Weeks
10:30 20 minute break
10:50 Local presentation-- they had a local lady who helped organize the event present her essay on Sweet Assurance
11:40 Lunch break
1pm Partner drawing
Music-- Hilary Weeks
Q&A session
2:15 15 minute break
2:30 Music-- Hilary Weeks
3:45 event wrap-up
Presenters: DeAnne Flynn, Chris Stewart, Kris Belcher, Kim Nelson and Hilary Weeks

Shantel and Hilary Weeks
Me and Hilary
Shantel, DeAnn and me. DeAnn Flynn is a mom, author and a former news anchor/reporter.
Shantel, Kim and I. Kim Nelson is a counselor and author.
Shantel, Kris and I. Kris Belcher is a mother and the author of Hard Times and Holy Places.
Shantel, Chris and I. Chris is an author and a former Air Force pilot.
I also ran into some old friends from when I was a kid: Marie and her daughter, Jen.
Becky, her daughter, Misty and grandson.
Marlene, her daughter, Sherie
and other daughter, Jenny.
Shantel was tired and slept on the way home.
We couldn't pass up another opportunity to have Mexican food, and stopped in Miles City. Another carload from Glendive also stopped there for dinner. Just after our dinners arrived, they plopped this sombrero on her head and started to sing.
All of the presenters were great, they told funny stories and occasionally even made ya cry. We had a wonderful Time Out!