Thursday, July 31, 2008

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

One of the reasons I workout is to enable me to rescue adrift kayaks during thunder, lightening and hail storms.
And then it ended:
Oh yeah, swimming with a cell phone and wallet in your pockets is a poor choice!

It turns out that our area sustained limited damage compared to the near-by city. We now have another adventure to regale others at the camp fires of future gatherings. The dents, dimples and dings on our heads, feet and torsos only add "war" wounds to enhance the telling.

We dried off as best we could, finished dinner by candle-light, because the power was out for 4 hours. After all left to assess home damage I watched the DVD that Leigh brought: "The Boondock Saints."

There's always a Story.


Sunday, July 27, 2008

# 121 Solace
Solace: comfort in times of distress.

During the ice storm that left us without electricity for days, I found comfort in the radiating warmth from the woodstove. We were able to stay warm and cook food, and paradoxically discern the beauty of the disaster outside our windows.

Walking the rice paddy dykes in Nam, fearing an enemies bullet step by step, moment to moment, I found comfort in the images of the verdant countryside, and the smiling faces of the Vietnamese farmers.

In times of stress, or not, I've derived pleasure from the myriad of nature's offerings: sunrises, sunsets, foggy mornings, kayaking calm waters, rain storms beating a soothing rhythm on the metal roof, snow flakes the size of quarters falling on the darkest of nights, strolling barefoot on a deserted sandy beach, a yoga session, self hypnosis and more.

With all that in mind, I think there is no solace quite as strong as human touch.

You took my little hand
Wrapping it in yours.
Tears welling in my eyes,
We trod the path through the park
To that medieval fortress' doors.

Along the path of life
Other's hands touched mine
Or clapped me on the back.
Each one lifted me,
And I would feel fine.

You took my big hand
In your tiny frail one.
Reflecting, you spoke
In tone strong and clear;
You've always been a good son.


Thursday, July 24, 2008

There is a huge empty space in the cottage this morning! Our two little sugar beets, Bossy Cow, and Snorebert have winged their way back to south Texas.. They flew out of Syracuse yesterday and right towards Hurricane Dolly. As you might imagine, it was tough enough saying good bye, but the thought of them getting stranded some where because of the hurricane, which hit shore near their home, doubled everyone here's worry.
Their dad called us as soon as the plane touched down in Corpus to say that the had arrived without mishap, and only 1/2 hour late. He said it wasn't even raining there at the airport, although the ground was wet from recent rain. So much for the Weather Channel hype.

We will all look fondly back on the last three weeks for a long time to come. I can't tell you when I've enjoyed my self more. This time together lived up to all our expectations. Having all our kids home and our grandchildren to boot made for everlasting memories. We have every intention of repeating this next year but, hey, life is full of surprises, and only death or alzheimers can erase these past 3 weeks from my memory.

Next week the 2 little munchkins will travel with their mother to the San Francisco area to spend some time with their other grand parents. What a great summer those kids are having!

As our family regroups in their disparate corners of the country, we face a new day with high spirits and thanks in our hearts!

Richard the "Flower Child" Wright wearing a daisey chain made by Hailey.
Childhood chums return from birthday fishing trip: Andy and BL .


Tuesday, July 22, 2008

rel and D. 22 July, 1967

Today is our 41st wedding anniversary.

Last year we celebrated in grand style with a romantic weekend in Canada's capital, Ottawa.
This year we celebrated by enjoying the fruits of our marriage: having all our children and grand children with us this past weekend.
With family flung far and wide in these modern times that is a pretty substantial gift for us to enjoy.

On the practical side, I'm on call today so, we'll be lucky to have supper together tonight. :-)


Monday, July 21, 2008

Kristi, Jacob, rel, Crystal, D., Hailey, rel II, Josh, Michelle.

After a whirlwind week's vacation, scads of pictures, and many, many stories, it's back to work for rest and recuperation!


Wednesday, July 16, 2008

A S'more



S'mores history and lore

In yesterday's post I mentioned S'mores. My blog friend Jellyhead inquired as to what smore/smores referred to. The two click-ons (no, that's not Klingons) immediately above describe this delicious camping desert very well.

Aunty Michelle and Hailey roasting marshmallows over the top of the chimenea, (perfect for a browning a marshmallow to perfection) on the 4th of July.

Every afternoon since the 1st of July I'm asked two questions: Grandpa, are you going to take a bath in the river with us tonight?, and Are we going to make s'mores tonight?

Night before last we did have a s'more fest, sans pouring rain, and drew the neighbors in as well.
New made friends, Grace, and Shane were here. Bonnie and Dick came over and participated. Crystal took a toasted marshmallow to Grace's mom who was busy on the phone and couldn't join us and Shane took two s'mores back to his camp to share with his mom. Kids and s'mores are great ice-breakers and they taste good too.

This morning we are all traveling to Syracuse, NY, to meet The girl's dad who is flying in from Texas. My namesake son's, relII, ETA is 1430. He shares a birthday with his grandma, D's mom.
On the 21st he will turn 36 and his grandma will celebrate her 80th. We'll travel to Chateauguay Lake, NY for the party.


Tuesday, July 15, 2008

"Are we going to make smores tonight, grandpa?"

"Maybe. We'll have to wait and see. Not if it's pouring rain."

"I want to make smores tonight."

"Even if it's pouring rain?"

"Yes, even if it's pouring rain!"

"I suppose that's because you're seven."

From time to time, in casual conversation, it comes up; if you could be any age, what would you choose?
I've picked 16 or 21, or even 29 but now that I've been granted a review of childhood through the time spent with my grandchildren I choose 7. If I could be any age, I think seven is better than any age I've lived so far.

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Saturday, July 12, 2008

Kayak lessons

birds at the feeder

Crystal and Buddy

Bath and play time
Drawing, painting, writing
getting ready for the "shower"

Early morning cool
Sitting by the window
Looking out at the
Fog blanket
Laying on the
Ripple free river.

Blue heron
Neck full extended
Peruses the depths
Searching for finned
Stark still vigilance-
Gangly, gawky, ugly beauty
Ready for flight
With the first unrecognized

Finally sated
Cats curl around
Each other on the chair.
Grandma & Crystal
Sleeping still,
While Hailey reads,
And Grandpa sits
Natures wonders
Through the window.

Dreams filled with
Yesterdays finds-
A new friend
From camp next door-
Swimming, fishing,
Crayfish catching.
Take a break for
Checkers with

Bedrock for dinner.
Chicken strips,
Homemade french-fries &
Pecan pie.
For Crystal and Grandpa:
Blueberry cheesecake soft serve.

I'm thinkin;
Summer vacation
Couldn't start better.

foolin', waitin' for supper
Old man and young buck
Intrigued by night sounds
New friends: Shane, Gracie, Crystal, Hailey drinking hot chocolate at dusk after water frolics.

Bedtime: Hailey, turn out the light please!

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Monday, July 07, 2008

July 4th weekend wrap-up

I did very little blogging over this past holiday weekend and spent considerable time enjoying family time. I was on call Thursday the third, so I didn't dare to risk going home for the annual fireworks display for fear that, if called, I wouldn't be able to respond quickly enough, with the traffic congestion and all. Grandma, the girls, and Aunty Michelle said that they were spectacular. Uncle Jacob and Kristi arrived on the afternoon of the 4th for the weekend. The weather was perfect for a fourth of July celebration, and we all made the most of it: from visits with friends and neighbors, setting up the tent, sipping margaritas or beer, and Pepsi products, swimming and more swimming and reading and ladder toss, to camp fires and marshmallow roasting. That was just on the fourth. Saturday was filled with swimming, skipping stones, shopping, napping, reading, and trying to catch fish in a plastic cup. Jay and Kristi went to Lucas and Christy's wedding reception while the rest of the clan went to Bedrock for dinner and....ICE CREAM! (I've decided that I need to recapture the patience, as well as the imagination of a 7 year old trying to catch fish in a plastic cup!!!!). We watched ducks and geese and a weasel, sunsets and and kitties lounging in the windows. We went kayaking and took a toad with us in Hailey's kayak. Crystal learned to kayak with grandma's help. We saw Richard get in the boat, and Scott brought Crystal a net to make catching fish a little easier. We BBQ'd and ate ,and, and ,and well we were just busy.