Sunday, March 31, 2013

2013 - Day 90/275 - Easter Sunday...

It was an earlier day than a usual Sunday, because I had to get up and let the Easter Bunny in to deliver Jody's Easter Basket.  It rocked with lots and lots of different kinds of chocolate, but no jelly beans.  No jelly beans for ANYONE except for me.  Sharing jelly beans is not one of my strengths, but Jody does not like jelly beans anyway, so...

Miguel got here about 8:30, and I was already out in the front barn, putting another piece of a chicken run together.  It did not exactly work out as planned, but it did work out.  We now have four distinct chicken areas; one for the smallest chicks (inside the front barn), another for the chicks that are about three weeks old now (a coop and run within a run), a third area for the bigger Silver Laced Wyandottes (a coop within a kennel) and finally the big coop where the big girls roost.  We will be rotating chickens for a while, but I think everything is under control for now.

Then we got the cattle fed, worked on the electric fence (I think it is good for a while) and a whole lot of this and that.  Miguel even got a lot of the grass cut.

Jody and I had to leave about 12:30 to go into town for Easter Dinner with our friends Michael and Lynda.  Their son Josh and his girlfriend Mary Anne were there as well and brought their dog Fancy (all decked out in her Easter finery).  This is a picture of Jody, me and Fancy at the dinner table.

It was a combination Easter dinner and a celebration of Jody's birthday (which is actually tomorrow).  A delicious dinner and the company was really fine.

This should be a relatively calm week, nothing too much will be going on (I don't think) until next week.  It seems there are back-to-back meetings next week.

Deeds, Actions, Changes, HAPPY EASTER, Kindnesses, Whirled Peas, FUN!

Saturday, March 30, 2013

2013 - Day 89/276 - Saturday...

I am omniscient.  I know things.  I have powers.  Just today, I learned that I have the power to make it rain.  I have the power to break spokes on bicycles.  I have the power to render electrical appliances useless.  I have the power to turn otherwise good books into drivel.  And all I have to do is get on my bike and go for a ride.  The training ride today was actually cancelled (I had no idea) but six of us showed up and rode about 24 miles.  One brave soul decided to do the longer ride, about 35 miles.  It was a good ride, not too warm, a little breezy and just a touch of rain.

After the ride (in which all the things above happened) I filled the Polaris and the tractor with diesel fuel and put the empties in the back of the truck.  Jody and I went into town for lunch, and stopped to get the diesel cans refilled, and put gas in the truck.

I came home and got in the big blue chair and took a nap.  When I woke up, I went out to the chickens, and put together a new hutch for some of the girls.  Have I mentioned that I went over the cliff this year buying baby chicks?  We (okay I) have WAY too many chicks.  I can stock Publix with eggs by fall.  But, for now, we shall just wait and see.

Tomorrow is Easter, and we have the possibility for a little bit of rain in the afternoon, then on Tuesday and Wednesday we have a 60% chance of precipitation in the area.  Keep your fingers crossed.

Deeds, Actions, Changes, OMNISCIENT, Kindnesses, Whirled Peas, FUN!

Friday, March 29, 2013

2013 - Day 88/277 - Friday (Good Friday)

I am reading a really good book called The Shoemaker's Wife (thanks Karla) and it is about Italian immigrants to the United States in the early twentieth century.  Lots to do about being Catholic, and it is kind of fitting to be immersed about Catholicism with the new Pope and all.  SO, these days, if anyone asks me anything about a religious topic, I just reply 'No, I'm not Catholic'.  Seems to be a good response to almost any question I get these days.  I was in a bakery today, getting Jody and me a cinnamon roll for breakfast in the morning, and one of the guys was surprised that I was working today.  I replied 'I'm working today, I'm not Catholic' and that was the end of that.  You should try it.  I think it will probably work for anything, even if the questions are not about religion.

Traffic was very relaxed this morning, and just a few blocks away from the office I passed a house that had done an excellent job of cultivating their bluebonnets and poppies.  Very nice, I hope you enjoy the photo.

Work was also pretty relaxed, I got some work done and then went about catching up on some things I had been avoiding (not all of it, just some of it), and then went off to preview homes in Cedar Park.  Before heading home for the day, I also got some more errands accomplished, so that was good.

Tomorrow I will try a 24 to 25 mile bike ride, and keep trying to work my way up to the 50 miles I have committed myself to on the 27th of April.  It will be fine, no worries.  Whatever...

Deeds, Actions, Changes, BLUEBONNETS, Kindnesses, Whirled Peas, FUN!

Thursday, March 28, 2013

2013 - Day 87/278 - Thursday...

I hope you are all sitting down, because from where I am sitting, it;s kind of a rough ride.  It is late and I just got home, and I am already self-medicated and about ready to go to sleep.

I got a lot of work done today, and then got a lot of running around and lots of errands run.  Tomorrow is Good Friday (insert joke about all Fridays are pretty okay, some are better than others), and I expect it will be a short day.  The real estate work that was done was very meaningful and I was glad to get it accomplished.  Chris and I got our Meals-On-Wheels Route completed with not too much delay, and on the way back to the office we stopped at a couple new home developments and then got some work done at the office.  Then most of us went over to El Mercado for lunch (leaving Shane to fend for himself) and we got back to the office at about 2:15.  I had more work to do, Chris and Ruby were in meetings, and after that Chris and I went and I ran a plethora of errands.

Namely:  We had to go to the feed store, because the sheer volume of baby chicks I have this year makes it to where I have to constantly be buying feed for those little buggers.  Then there was the time spent at the Post Office, typically not a happy place to be, but this deal was just fine.  Then I needed to go to the light bulb shop, the only place in a 400 mile radius of Austin that had the particular bulb that I needed, but they had it and I needed it so it all worked out really well.  Then it was on to Walgreen's (Oh Crap, I bought two more bags of jelly beans) where I bought solid chocolate Easter Bunnies for the office. took about 45 minutes to get back to the office, and I still had not retrieved my bike from bicycle sport shop.  I got there about 5:45 and that took about 15 minutes, which meant I was only (really) about 5 minutes late for my 6:30 appointment.

Overall, not too shabby.  My friend Steve got a house under contract at the same place he directed me to last week, but he wasn't working with Candy, he worked with Kristi.  Either way, it is nice to be having home sales tallying up in our respectable corners.  Bring on the filthy lucre, I'll take it all!

I think I should go to bed now.

Deeds, Actions, Changes, LIGHT BULBS, Kindnesses, Whirled Peas, FUN!

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

2013 - Day 86/279 - Wednesday...

Hello, my name is Bill, and I am a jelly-bean-a-holic.  (Now in unison) HI BILL.  I had a craving for jelly beans for a long time.  I took a side trip to a Walgreen's to scope out the jelly beans one day, but refused to buy them.  I am weak, I can't help it.  When I went back, the jelly beans were on sale, two bags for $5.  I bought two bags.  That was over a week ago.  A serving of jelly beans (according to the nutrition statement on the bag, and as well as I am in this parenthetical position, are the words 'nutrition statement' and jelly beans (when used together) an oxy-moron?) is (approximately) 14 jelly beans.  REALLY?  Who can stop at two jelly beans?  Not Moi!  After 14 jelly beans, I am just getting started.  And did you notice, I got one parenthetical statement WITHIN ANOTHER parenthetical statement.

Forgive me, I think I have a sugar buzz...

All the chickens are doing nicely, and the cattle seem to be enjoying themselves (as best as I can tell) and there are no tornadic winds in the forecast.  Tomorrow will be a relatively calm day, and I have some properties to preview, and I will be doing my Meals-On-Wheels gig as well.  A double win!

Deeds, Actions, Changes, JELLY BEANS, Kindnesses, Whirled Peas, FUN!

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

2013 - Day 85/280 - Tuesday...

It was actually cooler last night than the night before.  The Cannas suffered a little bit; the Iris did just fine, and I think the morning glories survived unscathed.  We will know how everything else is in a couple of days.

This is a picture of the trumpet vines outside our offices.  Every year they are just beautiful, and I cannot get these things to grow at the house for money.  Not sure why that is, but they will not grow. 

I had some trouble with the electric fence in the back pastures last night.  For some reason the fence had just quit working and I could not figure that out at all.  I called our neighbor Randy and he came over after I got home from work and Randy finally found the short in the line.  We had driven along the entire perimeter of the fence line and did not see any problems, but Randy finally found it.  THANKS!

Early morning meeting tomorrow, going straight to the Board.

Deeds, Actions, Changes, ELECTRICITY, Kindnesses, Whirled Peas, FUN!

Monday, March 25, 2013

2013 - Day 84/281 - Monday...

The morning glories only have to make it through one more night, and then I think the coast will be clear until winter (which usually happens sometime in December for us).  Our temperatures here on the edge of nowhere did not make it down to the freezing mark overnight, but there is the possibility that it could happen again tonight.

The middle-chicks made it through just fine last night.  I put some fresh hay in their mini-coop and threw a sheet over them so I think that was more than necessary, but I am a worrier.  There were no problems out in the pastures either, but I will go ahead and cut the water off out there for one more night, just to be sure.

Today was a really good day.  I spent the morning in the office getting lots of work done, and at about 12:30 I took my bike in to Bicycle Sport Shop to have the spoke fixed.  I also asked them to set the time on my computer; I have the directions and try to follow them, but I cannot get the clock set on that bugger.  I am hopeless sometimes.

I had a 2 o'clock meeting at the Board, and I was home just before 6 o'clock this evening.  Not too shabby.

Tomorrow will be another good day. I have a non appointment and then a haircut appointment at 3, otherwise I will be in the office all day.  GOODY!

Deeds, Actions, Changes, GLORIES, Kindnesses, Whirled Peas, FUN!

Sunday, March 24, 2013

2013 - Day 83/282 - Sunday...

Well, I am glad I got a ride in yesterday, because today was a bit breezy.  Did I mention that I broke a spoke yesterday on the ride?  First time ever for that to happen to me.  A visit to BSS tomorrow will fix all that.

There is a chance of a light freeze overnight, and maybe even for the next couple nights.  I will be really unhappy if it kills stuff back, everything is just now budding out.  I do not think we will be too troubled by it, they are saying mostly west of the Interstate, and we are several miles east.  BUT I am VERY CONCERNED for the morning glories that are just now poking up through the soil.  AND the Iris, and everything else.  We will all hope for the best.

I stayed in bed pretty late this morning, and then made a big pile of eggs for me and Jody, took core of the chicks and went out to feed the cattle.  It is kind of difficult to feed cattle when the winds are gusting up to 40 miles an hour.  Perseverance pays, and it got all done.

I did go into north Austin today, and got another property under contract for some clients.  Life is good. 

I don' think this week is quite as busy as last week, but I am sure there will be a couple hectic days AND I have one late night meeting planned already.

Deeds, Actions, Changes, FREEZE WARNING, Kindnesses, Whirled Peas, FUN!

Saturday, March 23, 2013

2013 - Day 82/283 - Saturday...

Even though it is Saturday, I did not sleep in this morning.  I got up about 5:30 (I think) and get things ready for a bike ride.  I did have a chance to read the paper and to make Jody and me a pile of eggs, but I have to get some training rides in before the bike ride on April 27th.  I signed up to do 100 miles (that was in December) and I have thought better of that, and now I am down to considering a 50 mile ride.  I did 17 miles today, I could have probably gone further (I know I could have) but there was no need to kill myself.  I met up with my friend Steve, and he is a really strong rider, but he was very kind to wait for me.  I have always been more like the tortoise and not so much like the hare...slow and steady.  BUT, I will be fine, and the ride is for a really good cause.  AND, I am raising funds if anyone is interested...

On the way home from the ride, I stopped by a new home development to preview some homes for a client, and we shall see how that goes.

When I got home, Jody and I went into Georgetown for lunch, and went by a nursery looking for some Texas native trees to plant.  All they had were some Texas Native Redbuds, and they were $150 a piece, and that was more than I was expecting.  I expect I will be able to find some smaller ones before the season is over.

There is a cold front supposed to come in tonight, and the high temperature for tomorrow is going to squeak up to 50 if we are lucky.  They are forecasting a couple nights next week in the 30's.  All the new girls will do just fine, the very smallest of them still have a heat lamp on them, so everyone will be just fine.  I will throw a little more hay in the coop for them.

Deeds, Actions, Changes, RIDING, Kindnesses, Whirled Peas, FUN!

Friday, March 22, 2013

2013 - DAy 81/284 - Friday...

This here is a picture of my main girl Vera, just being ready for her close-up.

Another busy day here in central Texas.  A good bit of work done this morning before heading to the Board for a quick meeting.  I did not expect it to be quick, but it was, and that was pretty sweet.  I love finding time.

I got back to the office about Noon, and did some more power real estate.  I need to find another couple houses for my clients, and I am not having a lot of luck.  I hope to be able to concentrate on that this weekend, and hopefully preview some houses on Sunday.

Deeds, Actions, Changes, VERA, Kindnesses, Whirled Peas, FUN!

Thursday, March 21, 2013

2013 - Day 80/285 - Thursday...

I actually took the time to stop and appreciate some clouds on the way home this evening.  Interesting how when I get to a certain point in my commute, things just start to take a calmer demeanor.  Kind of nice really.

It was meeting after meeting after meeting today.  Property Management (PM in the AM), then Meals-On-Wheels, then Installation and then Facilities.  Meetings started at 9AM and the last one ended after 6.  Kind of a hectic but really rewarding day, all things considered.

Tomorrow I have a 10 o'clock meeting and that should be over with at about noon, and then I will be able to put in some office time.

Saturday I need to do a bicycle training ride, the big ride is just about 5 weeks away and I need to get in the saddle if I intend to not embarrass myself.

We shall see...

Deeds, Actions, Changes, CLOUDS, Kindnesses, Whirled Peas, FUN!

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

2013 - Day 79/286 - Wednesday...

This is a photo of three of the four Silver Laced Wyandotte chicks that will be five weeks old on Friday.  They are doing fine and getting to be big girls.  They have been living in the intermediate coop outside since last Sunday, and not seeming to be experiencing any challenges.

Today I got to go back to see the colleagues that I had been instructing for the last two days at the Board.  Carrie and I went to visit with them during a break, and we took them some goodies.  It was really fun to go back and see them.  It was like I couldn't stay away...

After we got back, Margaret and I had a brief meeting with one of our clients in the office, and that was very nice, always nice to sit and chat with clients.

THEN we went to ZAX for lunch, the semi-annual office birthday lunch.

Then I had to head home to meet an electrician at the house.  Not making very much progress on that front, but there is always hope.

Deeds, Actions, Changes, FIRST DAY OF SPRING, Kindnesses, Whirled Peas, FUN!

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

2013 - Day 78/287 - Tuesday...

Another short and sweet entry...

A full day of instruction at the Austin Board, a really good class and a group of folks attending the class.  I had a great time, learned many things myself, and am certain the class attendees learned some things as well.

After the class I attended the Austin Board TREPAC Chili Cook-Off, which means I was at the Board today from 7:30 this morning until after 8 o'clock this evening.  It was kind of a long day, but the rest of the week should be somewhat easier.

I need to check and see when the next time is that I am scheduled to teach a class.

Tomorrow our office will be a break sponsor for the same students that I was guiding these two days, and then we are having an office lunch.  Then I have a 3:30 appointment out of the office.

Deeds, Actions, Changes, LONG DAYS, Kindnesses, Whirled Peas, FUN!

Monday, March 18, 2013

2013 - Day 77/288 - Monday...

With appropriate nods to FULL DISCLOSURE and TRANSPARENCY, I would like to say right now that NO COWS WERE HARMED IN THE PRODUCTION OF THIS JOURNAL ENTRY.  I thought about it, but no cow came to any harm.

I taught a full day of class today at the Austin Board, and just before I left to come home, I had received a call from Jody, and the message went into my voice mail.  AND I have Google Voice which transcribes voice mail messages into text.  SO, the jist of the conversation was that all the cattle had gotten loose and the front gate at the house was closed, so don't come barrel-assing into the driveway, because I would crash into the gate.  I made it home, and it was actually easier to get all the cattle back into their pastures than I was expecting.  It is not something that I want to do on a regular basis, but I got it done in about thirty minutes with Jody's help, and all ended well.  Not a LOT of damage around the house, at least none of the cattle thought the pool cover was solid ground, so none of them went for a dip in the pool.  That would have been a real mess.

So I am now going straight to the photo of the Iris that I took this evening, and hope you all enjoy it.  This is one of the lovely parchment colored Iris, and I think these are really pretty.

I have another day of teaching (guiding) tomorrow, and tomorrow night I will be staying late for the Annual TREPAC Chili Cook-Off.  If you want to taste some really good Chili, come on down, you can be my guest.

Deeds, Actions, Changes, LOOSE LIVESTOCK (my favorite kind), Kindnesses, Whirled Peas, FUN!

Sunday, March 17, 2013

2013 - Day 76/289 - Sunday...

This will be short and sweet...

There is activity in the Morning Glory beds, not a lot but some.  I planted more seeds today.  If even half of the seeds come up and climb the trellis, it will be very pretty in a couple months.

Between me and Miguel, we got a LOT of work done today, and now it is almost time for bed.  The month old chicks are spending their first night in the outside coop, and they are not being quiet about it.  I hope they do not attract big mean animals.

Deeds, Actions, Changes, BE QUIET LITTLE CHICKS, Kindnesses, Whirled Peas, FUN!

Saturday, March 16, 2013

2013 - Day 75/290 - Saturday...

Well, contrary to what you may have THOUGHT you read in this journal last night, today turned out to be a pretty good day to do pretty much nothing.  I think tomorrow will be a better day to get some stuff done.  I will (I guess) just kind of wait and see how that all turns out.

My friend Jim came out last night and got the last two bee hives, so suddenly we are beeless.  He is a brave guy, did the whole thing himself (I told him he needed to bring help, I was not interested in participating), and he did not even suit up...well, no veil, no gloves.  I got stung once, he did not get stung at all.  He reports that he thinks one of the hives is pretty weak, but I hope it will recover.  It was interesting removing all the infra-structure that had supported the hives.  You cannot even tell they were ever there.  And it was fun being able to walk and ride around the front of the property where the hives had been with no restrictions.

It is (still) really windy.  We must be having sustained winds of 15 to 20 miles per hour, and it seems like it has been like that for the past month.  We have had a couple really strong wind events this year, but we sustained very little damage.  The high temperature today (89 degrees) broke a record for the date; I hope that is not a pre-cursor of things to come.  The heat is not always terrible as long as there is a little bit of rain to go along with it every now and then, but water seems to be getting more and more precious around here.

Jody and I did go into Austin this morning just to run a couple errands, and then headed back home.  After we got home (about 3:30) I piled up in the big blue chair and slept until after 5 o'clock.  Finally then I felt motivated to go outside and cut some grass, but I discovered the battery was dead in the mower.  I have the trickle charger on it right now, and it should be ready to go in the morning.  Maybe...

Deeds, Actions, Changes, NO BEES, Kindnesses, Whirled Peas, FUN!

Friday, March 15, 2013

2013 - Day 74/291 - Friday...

Yessirreebob, it;s Friday, gateway to the weekend, and I think this weekend is going to be a great time to get some stuff done around the house.  Of course, there is still time to change my mind about that, there are several hours between now and whenever I get out of the bed tomorrow morning.  We shall see...

This is another SXSW Weekend in Austin, and it was quite urban in the city today.  Lots and lots of sirens and wrecks and masses of people.  Everybedy running around and hurrying up to wait.  Interesting.  But I am home now, so it really does not matter.

I brought home this pretty little begonia that we had rooted in the office. I say 'we', it was actually Carrie that rooted it, but I did look at it in the office every now and then.  I put it in the cup holder of the car to keep it from tumping over, and that worked (mostly).  I think it will like its new home here on the edge of nowhere!

OKAY, honestly, I an totally over the edge in the chick department.  I bought ten more chicks today (I swear I am done, Jody) which puts me at 25 chicks for this season.  If they all survive, that will put us at 33 chickens when they mature.  I expect something to happen to some of them, and I also expect at least four or five of them to be cocks (with a very short lifespan).  BUT, I think it is possible that we could end up with about 25 chickens at the end of all this.  BUT THEY ARE SO CUTE.  And, oh yes, they lay the MOST expensive eggs in the world.  Whatever...

Deeds, Actions, Changes, MORE CHICKS, Kindnesses, Whirled Peas, FUN!

Thursday, March 14, 2013

2013 - Day 73/292 - Thursday...

Not bad for a Thursday, although I am really looking forward to about this time tomorrow night.

We had a good PM meeting in the AM and after that I did a little power real estate.  Life is good in the Austin (and surrounding areas) real estate market.  I had the WCR Luncheon to attend this morning, and that was a full house.  All the Officers are doing a great job, I would name them but I would forget someone, and I do not want to do that.  Lunch was good and I got to eat some stuff that I am not supposed to be eating.  That was even better.

Tomorrow Chris and I are going to spend several hours working on Installation stuff.  Still nine months away, but we have already been working on it for four months.  The Devil is in the Details.

By this time tomorrow night I also expect to be the proud owner of (probably) five more chicks, most likely Black Cochins.  They are really pretty, fluffy, feathery chickens.  It should be interesting.

Deeds, Actions, Changes, GOOD JOB WCR, Kindnesses, Whirled Peas, FUN!

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

2013 - Day 72/293 - Wednesday...

I think the time change is catching up with me or I am just older today than I was a couple days ago.  I just seem kind of tired today, even though it is still a bright spring afternoon outside.

This was a really pretty good day.  I did some power real estate this morning, and left for the Board at about 9:30.  I had a 10:30 meeting, a Noon meeting and I taught a quick 'Know Your Code' class at 12:30,and I was back in the office by 2:15.  Tomorrow will be a little bit of the same, I have a PM meeting in the AM, then an 11:30 appointment and then I will be back in the office by about 2, knock out some power real estate, and then head for home.

When I got home this afternoon, I did my usual; fall asleep in the big blue chair while watching the news, and then I went out to check on the chicks.  I was greeted by Vera (Queen of all Chickens in these parts) and she is a little bit curious of what is going on inside the barn.  All the new chicks seem to be doing well, and they are all seemingly healthy.  I will get about four more on Friday, and that will be it for the season.  Okay, maybe I will get five more on Friday, just because 20 is easier to say than 19.  Whatever.

Deeds, Actions, Changes, QUEEN OF THE CHICKENS, Kindnesses, Whirled Peas, FUN!

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

2013 - Day 71/294 - Tuesday...

The most exciting thing that happened today was discovering that there was a leak at one of the troughs in the closest pasture.  We lost about 5,000 gallons of water by my calculations, just another reason for my continued OCD.  Check all those meters on a daily basis!

All the chicks are doing well, the only one I am really worried about is the smallest white one in this photo, sort of at the ten o'clock position.  She (so far I assume they are all she's) is the smallest one, and she has not been that frisky, plus she has some poop stuck on her butt that I cannot get off, and a poopy butt on a baby chick is not a good sign.  BUT (not butt) she has made it this far, so everyday she makes it is a good thing.  In this trough there are eleven chicks ranging in age from about a week to ten days. In another pen we have four more chicks that are about three to four weeks old now.  It will not be a cool tonight as it has been, and I am hoping to move them all back outside by the end of the weekend.  We shall see...

Deeds, Actions, Changes, WATER LOSS, Kindnesses, Whirled Peas, FUN!

Monday, March 11, 2013

031113 - Day 70/295 - Monday...

Well, this is just perfect...

Other than that, it was not a terrible day.  I forgot that we are experiencing spring break, and I thought my new route to the office was working wonderfully well.  I did leave about ten minutes early, which by itself could have explained the smoother than usual commute, but I really think it is spring break.

I am totally out of control on the chick front.  I went and got seven more chicks this afternoon, and I am POSITIVE that I will be getting at least four more on Friday.  That makes 15 chicks this season, and more on the way.  I am totally out of control.  But, while I am on the subject, do you need any eggs?  Chances are pretty good we will have extras.

I did get one house under contract this afternoon, so that is a good thing.  Always nice to know I have a paycheck in the pipeline.  Tomorrow will be another day of mostly office stuff, and starting on Wednesday I have a couple meetings and classes to attend.

Deeds, Actions, Changes, MORE CHICKS, Kindnesses, Whirled Peas, FUN!

Sunday, March 10, 2013

2013 - Day 69/296 - Sunday...

Okay, daylight saving time is upon us, and I feel like I have moved to Alaska where the sun shines 24 hours a day.  It is almost my bedtime, and it looks like high noon outside.  And the chickens will not be going to bed now until I should have been in bed HOURS ago..

All the new chicks are now out in the front barn, the littlest ones have a heat lamp to keep warm, the three week old chicks are fending for themselves, but there is some hay in their mini-coop that should work well for them.  It is supposed to be down in the 30's tonight but it should stay at least 40 or above in the barn.  It is still windy and hopefully that wind will die down soon.

We got about 0.84 inches of rain overnight, and the rains came in waves.  It would rain a while, then quit.  Thunder and rain a while, and then quit.  This went on for three or four hours, but when I got out of bed this morning it was all over with.  It was a pretty and sunny day today, but the high did not make it out of the low 60's.  It is, however, still March, and we will be complaining of the heat soon enough.  There is word that the lakes have risen about 2 inches with the rains, but they need to rise about 50 feet to make a real impact.

It should be a good week at the office.  I have buyer clients so that is good.  It is kind of like the old days, and real estate is fun again.

Deeds, Actions, Changes, RAIN, Kindnesses, Whirled Peas, FUN!

Saturday, March 9, 2013

2013 - Day68/297 - Saturday...

Even though I was totally prepared for sleeping in this morning, it did not happen.  The dog keeps finding a skunk spot somewhere and rolls in it and them comes into the house and smells like skunk.  I have looked everywhere I can think of, and cannot find what he is rolling in or where it is.  I don't think he is actually getting sprayed by a skunk, because I think that would be a much worse smell, I just think he finds some stinky spot and rolls in it.  It will wake you up in the morning, though!

Jody and I were taking the boy dog for his ride and we saw Randy and Deidre (his daughter) out in their pasture.  Their newest calf was running towards them, and it looked like Randy had a bottle to feed the calf.  After we got home, I logged onto the Internet, and Irene had posted this picture.  Jody and I were then heading into Austin (I needed to preview a house for a Buyer Client) and they were all out in the yard.  I couldn't resist stopping to see why they had the calf in the back of Deidre's seems that it had some sort of a sty or something on it, and they had to take it to the vet, so they might as well take it in the car.  They said they watch Jody take the boy dog for a ride everyday so there is nothing wrong with taking the calf for a ride.  AND, the mama cow only has half-a-bag, so Randy has been bottle feeding it.  Interesting things go on out on the edge of nowhere.

On the way back from Austin, I stopped at the outlet mall and exchanged the shoes; not a bit of problem, it took less than ten minutes.  Then we stopped in Georgetown to drop some mail off at the post office and then to Chick-Fil-A for a chicken salad.  After that, we stopped at the Georgetown Feed Store and I bought four Crested Polish chicks.  So now we have four new Silver Laced Wyandotte chicks (see photo) and four Crested Polish.  I expect I will pick up six or eight more chicks at the end of next week and that should be it for this season.  The Wyandotte's are much bigger than the Crested's so I have them separated.  We are supposed to have some storms tonight so I am keeping all of them in the garage for now  Hopefully by the middle of next week I can put the Wyandotte's outside.  Tomorrow I will upload a photo of the Crested's.

Since it is supposed to storm, I fed cattle this morning and took them a fresh bale of hay.  If it does rain, it will be too wet to take hay to them, and I don't want to tear up the turf in the pastures.  We shall see.  I can take another bale out to them later this week, since I should be getting home while it is still daylight.

Deeds, Actions, Changes, MORE CHICKS, Kindnesses, Whirled Peas, FUN!

Friday, March 8, 2013

2013 - Day 67/298 - Friday...

Are you sitting down?  Are you comfortable?  This could take a while...

Okay, I TOTALLY remembered that I was supposed to take my alternate route into the office this morning, but the wreck occurred WAY before the cut-off to that route, and by the time I cleared the wreck, it was smooth sailing.  Traffic was less dense because of the back-up, so I figured it would be okay to keep going down the expressway (I think that is the definition of oxymoron) to work.  I totally second-guessed myself and should never have done that.  I will do my very best not to second-guess my self again.  It is the same thing that happens if I do not stay in the middle lane like I know I should.  It is the same thing that happens when I (used to) got in a line at the bank (remember those days?).  I ALWAYS got in the wrong line.

SO, as soon as I pretty much came to a stop on the expressway, it started to rain a little bit more vigorously.  Not a lot, but if you think people from Texas do not know how to drive in snow conditions, you should experience then driving on 0.05" of rain.  Just enough to make everyone crazy.

I got to the office and did not leave the place until it was time for me to head north for the weekend.  This is the first (of two) SXSW weekends and the city is FULL OF FREAKS.  Where do all these people come from and how long will it take them to leave?  Well, I know the answer to at least one of those questions.

Anyway, I did manage to get a lot of work done in the office, and I have nothing on my calendar for Monday and Tuesday, so I expect I will be caught up before long.  It is a good feeling.

When I left the office, I had chores to do, and I did not get them all done.  First I needed to stop at the pharmacy to pick up prescriptions.  DONE.  Then I went to Buck Moore Feeds to get organic layer mash and some started feed for some new chicks.  DONE.  Then it was on to Taylor Feed to get some Silver Laced Wyandotte chicks.  The bad part is, the chicks are already three weeks old, and that is older than I was expecting.  I am getting more chicks next week and I expect they will only be a couple days old, so that might be a problem.  I will need to keep them segregated til the newest ones get several weeks old, but I think it will work.  Anyway, I got that DONE as well. 

I had intended to go to the outlet mall as well, but I just did not have it in me.  I need to take a pair of shoes back that I bought in January that are already falling apart.  NOT DONE.  Maybe tomorrow.  I got about six miles from the last stop when I realized I left my cell phone at the Taylor Feed Store, and it was already after 5 o'clock.  In fact, they were closing up the place when I left.  I called OnStar and they called my cell phone and they answered and said they would wait for me to come back.  Such nice people!

When I got there, one of the women that works there was bottle feeding two kids (goats).  They were from different mothers, ones mother had four the others mother had three, and they had both been the runts of their whatevers (what do you call a litter of goats?).  Anyway, they were just as cute as they could be.

That is it, now it is dark, dinner is finished and I (hopefully) will sleep a little bit longer in the morning.

Deeds, Actions, Changes, KIDS, Kindnesses, Whirled Peas, FUN!

Thursday, March 7, 2013

2013 - Day 66/299 - Thursday...

Well we broke the 300 mark, there are now 299 days left in this year.

There was a great sunrise as I was heading in to the office this morning, and I did take a photo for authentication.  BUT, the photo of the Mountain Laurel with the teeny little lady-bug wins the slot of photo of the day for this day.  I spied these Mountain Laurels while Chris and I were delivering our Meals On Wheels route.  Only seven clients today (and one of them was not home) but it was nice to get out and do something good for someone.

Not as chilly today as it was yesterday, and it is supposed to be a fairly good chance of some rain on Sunday.  I am planning on getting four chicks tomorrow; Silver Laced Wyandottes.  They are really pretty.  I expect to get six or eight more this season, cause chickens have a mortality rate that you just have to keep stocking the girls.  Otherwise, everything is fine out here on the edge of nowhere.

Traffic was bad today, and I remembered that I am still supposed to be experimenting with my new route down MoPac.  I will try to remember tomorrow and see if that shortens the commute time.

Deeds, Actions, Changes, CHICKS, Kindnesses, Whirled Peas, FUN!

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

2013 - Day 65/300 - Wednesday...

I don't think it actually got to the freezing mark here at the edge of nowhere last night.  It did get within a degree or two, but no actual freeze.  Further west in the Hill Country, it was down to 21 degrees, but you have to expect freakish when you live out there towards Fredericksburg!

There was a pretty good (as in 'pretty good used cars') sunset this evening.  Not one of the best, but it was better than I could have done otherwise.  We get to see more sunrises and sunsets out here because there is nothing in the way.

I am still complaining that Daylight Savings time starts this weekend.  Let's just change it by a half-hour and call it good.  Soon I will start complaining that I can't put the girls to bed until 9:30 because they will not go into the coop.

I am (almost) always complaing about something.

Deeds, Actions, Changes, SUNSETS, Kindnesses, Whirled Peas, FUN!

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

2013 - Day 64/301 - Tuesday... was 89 degrees in Austin yesterday, and tonight it is supposed to be just a bit below freezing.  Crazy.  I am a little bit concerned about the plants around the house that have been lulled into this false sense of security that it was spring.  I mean, after all, daylight savings time starts this weekend, and I am not ready to spring forward.  I don't know about you.  I worry that the extra hour of sunlight will just burn up the crops if we don't get some rain soon.  I'm just sayin...

Not a bad day at the office, in fact it was a pretty good day.  I did some power real estate, and then headed off to do some shopping (Costco, we are being break sponsors tomorrow), and then I had two meetings to make.  Again, overall not a bad day.

TRAFFIC, HOWEVER was kind of another story this morning.  Very slow for no apparent reason.  This evening it was not too bad, mainly because I was already on the north side of town before I started going even further north.

The winds have died down as well.  I woke up this morning at 1:11 AM and at 3:33 AM because the wind was howling so badly.  But, it is relatively calm right now, which will make it even a better chance for a light freeze.  I just got back from turning the water off to the troughs in the pastures, just to be extra safe.

Deeds, Actions, Changes, FREEZES, Kindnesses, Whirled Peas, FUN!

Monday, March 4, 2013

2013 - Day 63/302 - Monday...

Okay, so yeah it was Monday, but it was not a terrible return to the office after 10 days of NOT being in the office.  It is good to know that we can leave and life will continue.  Let's you know who the really important people in the office are, and I am not one of them!

This is a picture that Ruby took while we were zip-lining in Roatan.  It was really a lot of fun, and I recommend it to you if you are thinking about it.  A big KUDOS to Doren who is afraid of heights but faced his fear and got outside of his comfort zone.  He was nervous, but he did it.  He is not really interested in doing it again, but he can tell everyone how much fun it was the first time.

I stayed in the office all day, but tomorrow I have a couple things to do outside the office.  Life is pretty much back to normal.

Deeds, Actions, Changes, ZIP LINING, Kindnesses, Whirled Peas, FUN!

Sunday, March 3, 2013

2013 - Day 62/303 - Sunday...

You guys need to pay closer attention tothe details of this on-line journal.  One day last week I got the day count all wrong and nobody even mentioned it.  SO, today the count is accurate, and all is back in sync!

Back home and glad to be able to say that.  It was a lot of fun, but it is always nice to be home.  There will be things to talk about and remember about this trip for a long time to come, but for now, I am glad to be back on land, even though it is windy like crazy here!

One of the biggest accomplishments of the trip was finding a pair of pink knock off crocs in an island gift shop outside Belize City.  We had gone snorkeling that morning, and after snorkeling we were taken to a small island which serves no purpose at all other than to give tourists something to do for about two hours.  On the island you can buy liquor, some food and lay by the beach (or in our case under a thatched roof hut to avoid the sun).  You were previously also capable of buying a pair of Pink Knock Off Crocs on the island, but I took care of that and purchased the only pair they had.  The mission continues!

Deeds, Actions, Changes, PINK CROCS, Kindnesses, Whirled Peas, FUN!

Saturday, March 2, 2013

2013 - Day 60/305 - Saturday...

Saturday. Last day on the cruise. This time tomorrow I will be back home, and to tell you the truth, I can hardly wait. Of course, there is not a whole lot I can do about it, but I will wait patiently and that will just have to do.

I attended a mortgage class this morning, and it was a good class.  Thanks Mark!  All the ins and outs of mortgages and what is going on in our markets, and what we can expect in the near term and the long term.

This afternoon, I was on a behind the scenes tour of the ship, and it was really pretty interesting. We went back stage of one of the shows, we went into the engineering parts of the ship, the recycling part of the ship, a couple of the galleys, the medical quarters of the ship, some of the Staff and Officers sections of the ship and finally the Bridge. I got frisked a couple times (woo-hoo) before going into a couple of the more sensitive areas, and I got to take a photo of the morgue. They would not let me lie on one of the slabs for a quick photo opportunity, and that was a bit of a letdown. But overall, it was an interesting tour. We had chocolates and champagne on the bridge and that was good. Not sure that I would do it again, but it was fun and interesting.

Dinner tonight was hosted by Mark and Shara in the Italian specialty restaurant Giovanni’s Table. Very good family style dining, and by far the best service and food of the entire adventure. Thanks to you both for the invitation.

Deeds, Actions, Changes, LAST DAY, Kindnesses, Whirled Peas, FUN!

2013 - Day 59/306 - Friday...

Can you believe it is the first day of March already? Where are the months going? I know it is the dame thing I say every month, but it seems like just yesterday it was just February! Oh, and yes, it is Friday already too!

We are on the downhill side of this cruise. It has been a pretty lazy day here, cloudy WINDY and threatening rain in Cozumel. Chris, Ruby and I had a late breakfast and then we headed into Cozumel. There were at least six cruise ships in port today, and that is a LOT of tourists! HEY AMIGO, would you like to step inside my shop? It was not as hot today as it has been, and we are wondering if the winds we are experiencing are the same winds that caused all the damage in Austin earlier in the week. Heading north tonight into north winds, should be interesting!

Tonight was the last formal night, and before dinner, Jim and Pam invited some of us to their cabin for wine. My opinion is, if things are not necessarily going the way you would like them to go, have some more wine. Pretty soon, everything will be okay!

Dinner was good and now it is time to sleep.

Deeds, Actions, Changes, MORE WINE, Kindnesses, Whirled Peas, FUN!