Did It!

Tuesday, April 25, 2017
Well, my efforts paid off. After busting my butt, waking up at 3:00 am for two days in a row and vacuuming, cleaning, packing, dusting, washing, steaming carpets, scrubbing grout and packing up all my mom's stuff, the family came to tour the house Saturday afternoon and immediately loved it. They were very friendly and enthusiastic, and decided on the spot to take it. And they want to buy two of my tv's, and one of my giant desks, and my big, cumbersome potted trees! The family was two grown kids (20 and 22), a dad, and his elderly mom. The house was perfect because the bedroom my mom had is perfect for this man's mom too. I don't know why, but I got a warm feeling when she walked into the room and said it was perfect for her.

My landlord was clearly impressed and had a big smile on his face as he gave me a "high five." So, those airline tickets to wherever I want to go are still good. I'm thinking I want to take the kids and James to the Buffalo Bill Center in Cody, and show them the wild horses, and hike in Weatherman Draw, then travel south through Meteetse, and maybe hike to Amelia Earhart's cabin, see a little of Yellowstone, then check out somewhere in the southwestern portion of the state, then travel through the Wind River portion, and also see some cool places like the Giant's Marbles and Hell's Half Acre and maybe travel along the Emigrant trail to experience that from a much more comfortable point of view. Oh, and Vedauwoo!

And I don't even think Forrest's treasure is there. I just want to see and experience all the adventure it has to offer. :)

Oh man, there is just too much I want to see. Lol. Maybe, if James and I work hard enough in the new business, we can move out west eventually. Or have a summer place over there.

Anyway, it feels really good to have the house shaping up. Next step is to either have a "garage auction" or a giant yard/estate sale. A lot of stuff needs to go on eBay, and I'm going to try and get some things on eBay this week, under the new business name. I have a ton of nice stuff that are basically just unneeded, unmeaningful fluff to me.

Well, it's only Tuesday, so gotta pretty for a busy day...have a good one...  OH! I almost forgot...what's up with the Snoopy in F's latest SB (182)?

Witness to a Warrior's Rest

Sunday, April 23, 2017
As the sun descends,
I listen for the whisper
of a closing door.
It sounds like the breeze
through misty heather on the moor,
like the breathy wisps
of fog along the marsh's soggy floor,
like the forgetting of a name
I'd sworn never to forget before.

As the moon ascends,
I watch for a soothing signal 
in the first watch of the night.
It might appear as a wink
of a star too far distant in my sight,
or the faint blink of a hazy planet
still reflecting the sun's light,
or even a good omen in the passing comet,
making me smile in delight.

And there--barely audible, 
a single, lonely, quiet --click-- 
maybe only heard in my restless dream?
I strain to hear any lingering sign, 
like the tinkling song of the nearby stream,
          --but all is silence--
I no longer sense the playful gleam...
And from the lake, like reverent warriors,
rises a ghostly steam...

Among nature's sacred bower,
I stand, head bowed, but dare a glance...
Whimsical willows refuse to weep,
but rather swirl in joyful dance,
A lone wolf howls in noble respect,
Then more join in to break sorrow's trance...

And finally--
-- the mysterious moon casts her silver glow
to cover his eternal rest in heroic romance.
And I am sure...
I'm not here by chance.

The Wire

Friday, April 21, 2017

So many things coming down to the wire...

My landlord says someone wants to look at the house tomorrow afternoon, and the guy definitely wants to rent, but wants a quick walk through.

So, I woke up at 3:00 am this morning and finally started work on my mom's stuff, putting most of it in boxes for now.

I don't have many knick knacks, but I've started packing the ones I do have...so the house is mostly ready to be shown.

Callie's 17th birthday is coming up at the end of the month. I am so proud of that kid. She sent me this text...

And then this one...she'd been talking about applying for the Summer@Brown program, and it includes residence. I wanted to reiterate that it was a good idea...she wants to take a writing class.

And then came this shocker...

HAWAII! What the heck! She springs these exuberant trips like they're a Saturday day out at Starbucks. Lol. It turns out my LANDLORD flew her, her aunt, and her cousins out to Hawaii for her birthday. My ex's family has a condo on Kauai (technically, I still own part of it, but have never been there), so they're staying there.

My landlord said he would also fly Joe, Callie, Aidan and I (and probably James) to Wyoming or the kids and I to Scotland or wherever we wanted to go. He's a pilot for Delta or something, and has gotten us very cheap or free airfare a lot over the years. He said he wants to do it for us because we've been such good tenants. Well, he's been an awesome landlord, too. I was really blessed to live here. 

And Callie got her braces off, too. Now it's Joe's turn...

Anyway, those are some awesome things happening with my Callie. She's such a wonderful kid. And a better writer now than I ever was. And I think she looks like a beautiful mixture of Emma Watson and Harry Styles, so unique and fresh. 

Lol. All wrapped up in one beautiful girl with one of the most beautiful souls I've ever known. 

Here she is in Cabo a couple months ago. I guess I also own part of a timeshare there, too, but again, I've never been there. Lol.

This is Callie with her cousin, Kiele.

I can't wait to see her this summer! And Ms. Callie, if you're reading this, told ya I'd brag about ya! 

Other than that, not much going on but a lot of tidying to do before tomorrow afternoon!

Have a happy Friday, everyone!

Catch Up...

Thursday, April 20, 2017
I haven't blogged the past few days because my eyes are failing me...again. It started Sunday after an unconventional Easter dinner of roast turkey, gravy, mashed taters, stuffing, corn and sweet rolls. My left eye had felt a little off, for a bit, but it started getting bad that afternoon, and the sledgehammer headache started kicking in and my eye was constantly watering. Once James headed home, I took out my contacts and made it as dark as possible in my room.

I went back to the eye doctor Monday, and will have to lay off wearing contacts for a while, which really stinks.

Saturday, James and I took Joe on a hike at the Long Leaf Preserve near my house. I wanted to show them where the wild boars have torn up the ground like the Tasmanian devils they are. But, although we hiked "off trail" for a while, the boar holes were nowhere to be found. We did find some large animal tracks, though. Our black bear population is booming.

We practiced some knife throwing, and found the technique to get it to stick sharp side down in the ground... Of course, Florida has sandy soil, so getting it to stick straight up is a little difficult.

Joe wanted to try with our ladle scoop, and man, that kid is good!

We logged into the geocache app and found one located nearby.

Trying to find the exact location of the ammo box was slightly tricky, as there were several little places for it to be hidden, and some of those places involved crawling through brush with spider webs, and I don't do spiders. So, once the box was located, I started in, saw a spider web, and said, "Nope, I'm not doing that." Lol.

So, Joe went in and pulled it out.

It had some dried out and broken little stuff in it. I took a shell. James took an army soldier, and Joe took something--he was going to take a blue tube that was supposed to light up, but he didn't, because it was broken. I think he took a matchbox car. Lol. Joe left a chemistry test he had folded in his pocket that he got a 12 out of 12 on. I left a scooper and James left a ladle.

Then we happened upon a caterpillar, displaying some "warning" coloration. I thought it might be one of the poisonous ones I'd read about, but after searching for it online, I really don't know what kind of caterpillar this is! If anyone knows, please let me know...

A few steps away, we think we found a chrysalis...

And I found the kinds of vines that used to cover the orange trees in the old abandoned grove behind our house on Shady Lane back in the day before the area boomed with development. I used to climb up and sit on top of orange trees and watch for boars.

Then we went to Wal Mart and got some Easter stuff for dinner the next day, and then grabbed some McDonald's for lunch. We are easy to please. Lol.

It was a nice weekend...

I haven't had a huge amount of time to put together Forrest's latest SB's, but I am pretty sure where he's going with them, so I'm on the trail...

It's Friday, but Sunday's Comin'

Friday, April 14, 2017
One of my favorites of all time...

We're Grandparents! (Sorta)

The baby ducks have hatched!

And James, like any proud grandpa, has been taking copious videos of them...this is from when the momma and her brood of 12 came home from their first swim...

Anyway, I can't wait till next weekend, when hopefully Joe, Aidan and I will all go down for the weekend. I can't wait to see my little grandbabies. Lol. Unlike kittens, I love little ducks. When I was a kid, we had pet ducks several times. It was while sitting with my duckling in the grass when I was about one or two when I had the coral snake scare (it was gnawing on my toe).

James is coming this weekend, because we didn't get to see each other last weekend. We're gonna try and work some more on getting my house more organized. I worked a little on it during the week, but progress is slow.

I also wanted to take a minute to brag about James, and my friend, Matt Maisano (and his awesome wife, Maria). Matt has spent the last couple years putting his heart and soul into a beautiful documentary about Forrest Fenn's Thrill of the Chase, and after two years of effort, it has finally come into fruition and will debut at the Albuquerque Film Festival the day before Fennboree this year. I can't wait to see it!

Anyway, James and his young friend, Max, are featured in Fenn's Searchers. You can see the trailer of this well-made and inspirational film here.

For those of you who don't know Matt Maisano, you will. He's one of those genuinely good guys who  takes great pride in his hard work. He's based out of North Carolina, and he's worked at PBS. Just like Mr. Rogers! Here's a pic of Matt proclaiming his love for PBS (hope ya don't mind, Matt--I took it from your FB page):

And of course, part of what makes Matt a great guy is his best friend, wife, and co-worker, Maria. Maria doesn't like a lot of attention, but she deserves to be recognized. Her soul is so bright and friendly and beautiful, you can't help but be drawn to her (sorry guys, stole this one, too).

Anyway, I think this is a great achievement for all involved. Besides James and Max, Cynthia, David Rice (aka Desertphile), and Sacha will also be featured in the movie.

I also got word from the Shannon Riggs, the producer working on the project James and I are a part of. Like all of these well-made documentaries, they take time, and ours is still very much in the works. Shannon is also hoping to attend Fennboree this year!

Okay, since I woke up late this morning, I've gotta cut this short...more to come this weekend if I get a chance. I want to tell you about an unspoken tragedy in Palo Duro...

Hope for Tomorrow

Thursday, April 13, 2017
I'm not feeling well today...I think I'm finally getting the flu going around, despite having gotten a flu shot. I was awake most of the night, but I'm up now, and will head in to work, and maybe work in the back office in case I'm contagious.

Luckily I had this blog already written, so it's an easy post.

A Native Folk Tale, Tribe Unknown (at least I couldn't find it in a brief search)

Once upon a time the colors of the world started to quarrel. All claimed that they were the best. The most important. The most useful. The favorite.

Green said: "Clearly, I am the most important. I am the sign of life and of hope. I was chosen for the grass, trees and leaves. Without me, all animals would die. Look over the countryside and you will see that I am in the majority."

Blue interrupted: "You only think about the earth, but consider the sky and the sea. It is the water that is the basis of life and drawn up by the clouds from the deep sea. The sky gives space and peace and serenity. Without my peace, you would all be nothing."

Yellow chuckled: "You are all so serious. I bring laughter, gaiety and warmth into the world. The sun is yellow, the moon is yellow, the stars are yellow. Every time you look at a sunflower, the whole world starts to smile. Without me there would be no fun."

Orange started next to blow her trumpet: "I am the color of health and strength. I may be scarce, but I am precious for I serve the needs of human life. I carry the most important vitamins. Think of carrots, pumpkins, oranges, mangoes and papayas. I don't hang around all the time, but when I fill the sky at sunrise or sunset, my beauty is so striking that no one gives another thought to any of you."

Red could not stand it any longer, he shouted out: "I am the ruler of all you. I am blood - life's blood! I am the color of danger and of bravery. I am willing to fight for a cause. I bring fire into blood. Without me, the earth would be as empty as the moon. I am the Color of passion and of love, the red rose, the poinsettia and the poppy."

Purple rose up to his full height: He was very tall and spoke with great pomp: I am the color of royalty and power. Kings, chiefs and bishops have always chosen me for I am the sign of authority and wisdom. People do not question me! They listen and obey."

Finally Indigo spoke, much more quietly than all the others, but with just as much determination: "Think of me. I am the color of silence. You hardly notice me, but without me you all become superficial. I represent thought and reflection, twilight and deep water. You need me for balance and contrast, for prayer and inner peace."

As so the colors went on boasting, each convinced of his or her own superiority. Their quarreling become louder and louder. Suddenly there was a startling flash of bright lightning, thunder rolled and boomed. Rain started to pour down relentlessly. The colors crouched down in fear, drawing close to one another for comfort.

In the midst of the clamor, Rain began to speak: "You foolish colors, fighting amongst yourselves, each trying to dominate the rest. Don't you know that you were each made for a special purpose, unique and different? Join hands with one another and come to me."

Doing as they were told, the colors united and joined hands.

The Rain continued: "From now on, when it rains, each of you will stretch across the sky in a great bow of color as a reminder that you can all live in peace. The Rainbow is a sign of hope for tomorrow."

And so, whenever a good rain washes the world, and a Rainbow appears in the sky, let us remember to appreciate one another.

And as always, be kind to one another...

But not the kitten. No one needs a kitten.