Fabulous cousin Nancy Purvine & Bruce have been with us for Christmas. WHEN I GET TIME, I intend to post some her Oregon pics that were taken exactly where we grew up....SE Oregon Desert and Ranch country. Here's ONE example of DESERT BEAUTY.........place like this are gems we spent many days as kids exploring, having a fabulous time: ***EMBIGGEN to feel the grandeur of high desert beauty. ONE THING I DO MISS here in the rain forest is that BIG SKY FEEL a desert easily provides....... I truly HAD forgotten how grand the place was that I grew up in. AT the very bottom of the deepest canyons in this pic, the Owyhee River flows........ When we return from the to do list ahead, I'll try to post some more. Thanks, Nancy!
Chester Metheny seems to be a lucky 81 yr old. He has been recovering rapidly from something almost all had assumed would finish him off. Rodger was coming home Saturday, when......... Surgeons at Chet's hospital told him they'd be removing the drain tubes from Chet's lungs today, Friday, and sending him home Saturday. What? That was planned a week later. That means today: Rodger sets up with Home Health Care some way for home nurses to visit Chet, and preps the home for his arrival. He must get food ready. Tomorrow he brings Chet home, gets him adjusted, and....hopefully, comes home tue ... wed ??? This is a GOOD thing....it means NO second trip just a week from This is pretty cool................Hopefully Chet continnow AT Christmas to help him leave the hospital. Whew. So. We just MAY enjoy this Christmas more than ever, assuming Rodger will be here. We'll have 20+ family/friends here the eve of the 23rd to eat, drink, sing, toast, and truly enjoy seeing one another. That's the beauty of the "family" you make in your life....... No Aunt Pauline squinting at you with one eye closed, downing the bourgon, signing the cross to protect herself, from the evil that you are. Hah. NO, this part of my family is beloved as are the friends that will be here. That being said, the food list will be made today.. . .. ... the tree's up, and house getting cleaned. We DID get the outdoor lights up, and as always, it seems in this green forest area, they always look nice at night: ***Yes, it's a pic from 2008....'cause I'm "still" wishing for snow........ This is pretty cool. Chet continues to heal. I AM thinking of many friends I miss simply because they live somewhere else, they've passed on, or we've lost touch. IT would be perfect if ALL were here with us next week . . . . . . . This little pass through life is SO short.......... THIS is the ONE time a year, we can once again feel what it means to be young-at-heart..................... There could be disadvantages to that: Lastly, don't forget it is the season for helping out our little native birds that are brave enough to stay with us all winter, like the little juncos:
Seems lots of us have lost loved ones AROUND the Christmas season...... I suppose one wants to hang on for that last chance to see the family. A GREAT way to guilt distant kids into coming home ONE MORE TIME...... and WHY is it some people get pretty a-skeered of dyin' as the last window of life begins to darken? ....and why too, are those that may be nervous about it the ones to outlast the rest of us. Rodger's Dad sat home developing double pneumonia for probably 2-3 weeks...... HE IS a TYPICAL southern male, stubborn just like the mules you may have heard about. When Rodger talked to him a week ago friday, he sounded weak, coughing, phlegm, hurting, etc....Rodger told him to get to the ER, that you probably have pneumonia. He replied, "No rush, I have a Doc appt Monday...." Rodger replied, "Just go to the ER" . . . . "NO"........... By the time he went to the doctor on: "Tuesday" . . . . . he was taken FROM the doctor's office to the hospital ER immediately and diagnosed with the pneumonia, heart stress, tummy trouble, etc, and prognosis didn't look good. Rodger left this last Friday, just in time to get to chat with him a bit prior to the surgeon team deciding to do emergency surgery saturday morning early cleaning out the lungs. A very invasive surgery Rodg was warned, that will leave tubes down his throat a few days so Chet would be left "Medicated". Once again, mule stubbornnessss pays off, the respirator tubes were taken out slowly yesterday over a period of hours, and by evening, he was alert, hurting, but recovering. Rodger began to think maybe this isn't that last visit. He drove Aunt Paula back to Ripon Sunday evening, returning to Chet's place for rest (and laundry). He pleasantly found out the place wasn't requiring as much cleanup as he was afraid would be there. As of Monday morning, unfortunately, RODGER is coming down with a sore throat, cold symptoms, but felt better Tuesday as he spent the day at the hospital helping Chet sit a bit, walk a bit, eat a bit, and share some much better times than last week. They will need to be planning for SOME care at Chet's place when he goes home..... some Medicare calls? What's in it for Mark? Why was he NOT there in California? It IS Christmastime. There were LOTS of holiday to-do lists he HAD to work on. The weekend was spent finishing the tree, getting packages sent, preparing all the Christmas Cards. The weekdays will see some work time on house cleanup, putting things away..... I ran a "self-clean" on the oven yesterday. . . . remember the oven saga from the kitchen remodel? This IS the 4th oven the manufacturer has placed here after multiple failures on the first 3...... ONE replaced when the heating element was burned out running a "self-clean". Well, with this fourth one, I ran that same "clean" procedure yesterday. Guess what burned out. Repair outfit simply by-passed the "thermal limiter" and ordered a replacement "kit" I'm forced to buy to get a $30 part. The kit cost? $246. I called Fisher Paykel.... who now's discussing options and will advise tomorrow. What an aggravation. ***The repairman told me that the "Thermal Limiters" OFTEN burn out on a "self" clean cycle because it's simply TOO long for THAT much heat to radiate form an oven. He suggests to all his clients that a clean cycle should never run longer than 2 hours. Hm. WHY do mfg's install a "self" clean cycle destined to fail? Hrrmph. Finally, this evening, I can see an end to the holiday prep work......(and time for a nap!!!). I enjoyed a fantastic thick Rib Steak w/ winter salad for lunch, watched the heavy rain showers punctuated with thunder and listened to the reports of the tornado barely south of here in Aumsville. Inneresting winter.
The first CD of Christmas music played every year here is an old one of the Mormo Choir's very old Christmas Albums: "CHRISTMAS" ...so old, it was recorded in the classic old Tabernacle...a fabulous album. Why did it go on today? I have survived the COLD! One of the positives about catching a "minor" aggravation like a cold, you feel like sleeping most of the time. When you recover, you're more grateful than usual about having energy and good health. So, with rain happenin' outside, I brought all the boxes down inside. NO, nothing's really in place, but a few little sights around the house today made me feel like the holidays are coming........AND.......cooking too, seemed to go with the music, and that feeling in the air. Why it was a regular beehive of activity... (***Embiggen the pictures if you're curious for more detail . . . . . . ) **Thanks, Arnie & Kaye I first started some bread.... An hour later ........it rose one MORE hour to full size before a bake: And it's cooling now.....it'll be good sanwich bread. It's a "mix" of: rye, gluten, wheat flours, a bit of flax seed, wheat germ, water, salt and yeast..... I prepared a vegetable broth with celery, carrots, onion, leek, parsnip, parsley........and when ready, it is gonna poach this salmon, wild caught by our good neighbor Aaron: I unloaded two boxes-o-bears.....their not where they'll be in two weeks, but this is a beginning: Of course, MAC simply hates being indoors, and finally gives up if I stay busy too long in the kitchen: And, found my dear Mom's beloved little house that lights up at night....she was very fond of this, and I have NO idea where she got it: **OF course, it's really a nothing little piece, but it's that attachment I have to it due to: MEMORIES. Frosty sings his own famous tune when pressed: Oh, yes, I opened another box, and like these little old santa like creatures: This tree is drinking about two quarts of water a day right now (yep, it WAS fresh cut)......and will look VERY different after our planned weekend decorating binge. Come on up.... and hang a few of those baubles with us. This takes us 2-3 days to finish....memories wash over us when you first see them every year. And, LASTLY, I love this....... I JUST cut these dead hydrangea blossom stems "in the rain" and brought them into dry about 2 hours ago . . . . .THIS is how they'll look the rest of the winter. I think they're quite beautiful: TWO Nancy cousin(s) and families are coming just before Christmas. We can't wait......A houseful of people will be having a merry time Dec. 23. OKAY. The season begins in this house NOW. I'm SO glad to be past a sniffling cold!