Friday, May 31, 2013

2013 - Day 151/214 - Friday...

Nothing herds a bunch of chickens quite as effectively as a combine working in a field across the road from the house.  Those machines do put out some noise, and the chickens were all heading up towards the house.  It was really an interesting sight. Herding chickens is not all that different than herding cats.

I hope the old country wisdom is still holding true, because if it is, we are in for a little bit more rain.  The sage out by the road is blooming prettily, and the saying is that the sage is a good predictor of a coming rain.  Keep your fingers crossed.

While you are crossing fingers, think some kind thoughts for the folks in Oklahoma.  They are getting pounded again with (I think) five big storms going through the area.  They need a chance to take a breath.

Today was a nice day, a busy office day and once again I amazed myself at exactly how much work I can get accomplished when I just put my head down.  Having said that, however, tomorrow I intend to put my head down and take a nap, maybe a couple.  There is a hammock out by the front barn that has my name on it.  I will try to get some stuff done, but mostly take it easy.  Sunday is traditionally my d for chores.

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

Thursday, May 30, 2013

2013 - Day 150/215 - Thursday...

Every work week should be four days; MAX!  I'm just sayin'...

Today was a really busy day, but since I had to go out and let the girls loose before heading into Austin, I took a detour over to the trellis (one of them) the see how the Morning Glories were doing.  It is still kind of dark for this behavior, but you could see these pretty 'flares' just starting to open up.  Morning Glories have an incredibly short life span (the blooms) so you have to enjoy what you can enjoy!  Pretty.

I made it into the office pretty early, and I was at my desk for most of the day.  I got an incredible amount of work done, and I have lots more to do tomorrow.  I expect I will be at it again pretty early in the morning.

Life is good.

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

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

2013 - Day 149/216 - Wednesday...

Well, here it is not even nine o'clock yet, the girls are all in bed and I am getting the blog started and I will be putting myself to bed before long.

This is a picture of me an my main chicken squeeze, Ms. Vera.  Vera is always ready for a photo opportunity, and (if I do say so myself) she is quite a looker.  It is interesting to see 18 chickens in the coop, and another 13 just outside the coop.  I will probably get those (the youngest) in the coop over this weekend.  Then it will be interesting to take a count every night.

I had a day full of meetings and there were meetings inside the meetings and those meetings spawned other meetings.  Oh, and then there was work to pay attention to.  E-mails to answer, crises of various sizes and shapes to quell and, overall, it was just your average day.

Tomorrow should be a bit more relaxed.  We shall see...

Deeds, Actions, Changes, MAIN SQUEEZE, Kindnesses, Whirled Peas, FUN!

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

2013 - Day 148/217 - Tuesday...

Okay, this is crazy.  I'm talking to YOU is 11:35 and I am just now getting home, and I have a meeting in the morning that is scheduled to last well into the afternoon.  Whatever...

Other than that I have no strong opinions...

Today was actually a pretty good day, there were lots of things learned by lots of people, and I was one of those people.  PLUS I got my haircut, and I am a sporting a poofy doo which will be corrected in the morning with a little bit of water and some Irish Spring.  None of that sissy stuff fer me!  This photo was taken from the window of my evening meeting, so it was not all bad.

Life is good but I am tired.  Rumor has it that Hubert came by and baled some hay in the front pasture and that is a good thing.  Hopefully I will get a chance to see it tomorrow morning on my way in to work and check out to see how many bales we got.  The challenge is, is it all weeds or will the cattle eat it?  Informed sources say if the cattle get hungry enough they will eat it, but I hope it does not come to that.

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

Monday, May 27, 2013

2013 - Day 147/218 - Memorial Day Monday...

My wish pretty much came true today, I did little of nothing except.  I did listen to some corn grow across the road from the house.

Okay, well I actually did get a couple things accomplished.  The intermediate girls got 'cooped' last night, and they were all accounted for this morning.  It is pretty easy to have your way with chickens when it is relatively dark outside.  These girls were much easier to deal with than the Wyandotte's were a couple weeks ago.  We shall see how it goes tonight.

Whatever.  I did take down the temporary run that used to contain the smallest (youngest) of the new girls.  Now it is their 'training coop' inside the main chicken run only, the 'run within the run' has been disassembled and I hope there will be no need for it next year.  There will need to be some intense attrition of chickens this year to cause me to need more next year.  We are holding right now at 31 chickens, I expect 3 or so will go to the big coop in the sky this year, but that will still leave us plenty, and plenty of eggs for friends.

I also got some grass cut, although not very much.  There were a couple naps throughout the day, and Jody and I did go to Salado (on an ice cream quest).  I have discovered Blue Bell Homemade in the Shade, pretty much like a Fudge Ripple Ice Cream, delicious.  So, that means I am set for a scoop or two each night for the next week to ten days.  Small extravagances, I can handle that.

Tonight we went to the Crossroads Cafe for burgers.  They were DEE-LICIOUS!  For a while, we thought they had gone to a no-smoking restaurant, but the waitress said they have ash trays that suck up the smoke.  Who knew such a thing would work, I sure did not, BUT it did not smell like cigarette smoke while we had our dinner, so that was a good thing.

On the way home from dinner, Hubert was moving cattle from one pasture to another pasture across the road, and he was bottle feeding this little calf.  The calf finished its bottle just as I got out of the car and was not convinced that Hubert did not have more milk for it.  Little calves are cute, Hubert and Pauline's cattle are certainly better behaved than ours are.

Speaking of which, I am earnestly going to try and rid myself of some cattle during the month of June.  Want to help?  Just let me know.

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

Sunday, May 26, 2013

2013 - Day 146/219 - Sunday...

As is typical on a Sunday on the edge of nowhere, it was a day of chores.  Cattle fed, chicken coop cleaned, lots of grass cut (more to do tomorrow), along with just some these and those that come up from day to day.  Pick up limbs that have fallen, pull weeds, clean the skimmer in the pool, sweep the porch, all that kind of stuff.  THEN there is always time to take a look at the clouds.  Today was a pretty good day for clouds.  It seems like we have had total cloud cover for several days, but today was 'partly cloudy' and the sun came through for a good part of the day.  It is still humid, but it was a beautiful day.  They say there is a chance for more rain on Wednesday and Thursday, 20% chance, but as I recall, we only had a 10% chance the last couple days, and we got close to an inch and three quarters.Back to the clouds...clouds are good, and remember, a good cloud weighs a lot of elephants!

This is the promised photo of my number two chicken.  She is (and at times is not) pretty happy to be scooped up and petted.  She is not as good about it as Vera is, but I think she will get there.  I have not decided what to call her, but it will come to me one of these days.  In this photo, one of us needs a shave and one of us (or maybe both of us) needs a haircut. 

Tonight will be an interesting chicken night.  Six of the girls (the intermediates) will be put in the big coop for the first time and will no longer have access to their little coop.  I don't know who will be the most traumatized, the intermediates or me.  That means six trips from coop to coop, and eventually the girls that are caught last should catch on to what is happening.  I expect it will take me ten or fifteen minutes to complete that task, and we will see if they all survive the trauma tomorrow morning.  I do not expect anything spectacular to happen, certainly nothing dire.

Other than cutting some more grass tomorrow, I really have very few plans for the day.  I hope all goes accordingly, I am kind of interested in trying out the hammock that has been ignored for about the last eight years.  It could happen...

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

Saturday, May 25, 2013

2013 - Day 145/220 - Saturday...

We had a little over an inch and a half in the gauge this morning, and about another tenth of an inch since then.  We are happy for the rain but of course we cannot go without complaining; now it is humid and sauna-like outside, so we can always come up with something to be unhappy about.  At least we are not experiencing floods like they have in San Antonio, they received over ten inches of rain in the past 24 hours or so.

It was pretty much a day of rest.  It did drizzle for most of the day, and I slept through most of it.  That was great.  Jody and I did go out for lunch (Schlotzsky's) and that was good.  There were naps before and after lunch, and dinner was some chips and hummus followed by pop-sicles.  A pretty balanced meals containing several of the food groups; beige, red, orange and brown.  I think everything was pretty well covered.

I did go out and commune with the chickens late this afternoon.  It is interesting to watch them, they think both Jody and I are the pied pipers.  I am not sure if they know we are two different people, or if they think they should just run out and mingle with whoever it is that comes out their way.  The one crested polish in particular is really getting to be my second best girl, I will try to post a proper photo of her tomorrow.  In the meantime, this is one of the newest girls eating out of the palm of my hand.  Really, baby chicks are TOO easy!

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

Friday, May 24, 2013

2013 - Day 144/221 - Friday...

I shall not dilly-dally with this entry.  The wind is blowing, the rain is still coming down (over an inch so far), there is lightning and thunder around.  Satellite Internet connections and the above conditions are not optimal.  I have no idea how long the connection will last.

I will tell you more about the mirror incident tomorrow, when I determine if the part that survived until I got out of the car last night (to check the meters) and then fell off in the driveway can be restored to its' original location.  It is not damaged, and looks like it can snap back on, so we shall see.  If it can be done, then all I need to do is glue a replacement piece of mirror (things in the mirror are really not closer than they appear), and I will then have an early American engineered automobile.  Whatever.

Not a bad day at work, closing was delayed because (information deleted to protect ME).  Will close next week, Then I have two closing the week after that.  Life (and the market) is good.  It was dark and cloudy all day, and about 2:45 this afternoon the heavens opened up.  It got even darker with driving rain.  I left about thirty minutes later, and we closed the office about 4 o'clock.  You could hardly see in front of you for most of the way home, and it followed me north and east.  I was not home five minutes before it started pouring, and it is still raining.  Possibly more rain tomorrow.  I love taking these photos from the car when it is raining.  I do not drive while distracted, I am an AR-TEESTE!  Thank you very much...

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

Thursday, May 23, 2013

2013 - Day 143/222 - Thursday...

This is a photo of the morning glories that I took the other morning.  They are doing very nicely, and I am glad of that.  So far so good.  I hope they do better this year than they did last year, and that we have a little bit more rain (at least) this year. I do not think the glories like hose water, I think they prefer rain water.  Don't we all?

Not a bad day today at all, at least not until right up to the very end.

Had a PM meeting in the AM, and then I was off to deliver Meals-On-Wheels.  Did that, had a couple errands to run, and got back to the office in time for a little bit more power real estate, and then it was off to a 2 o'clock meeting.  It was a pretty good meeting, and then it was back to the office in 4 o'clock traffic, which was not going very quickly.

Got some more work done in the office and then I was off to the TREPAC Prom Night.  Pretty fun, nice conversations going on, good turnout.  I had some small sammiches, a couple glasses of water and almost an entire diet Coke.  Not anything alcoholic.

On the way home, there were some barriers on the left side shoulder of IH-35.  Suddenly the barriers were coming into the left lane, and I was stuck between those orange and white barrels and a GREAT BIG TRUCK.  I lost most of the drivers side view mirror, but I guess overall it could have been worse.  I think the signage could have been better.  Okay, I think there could have been at least A SIGN telling drivers that the lane was being closed.  If there was, I did not see it, and I do not think the cars in front of me or behind me saw it either, we were all in the same predicament. 

Deeds, Actions, Changes, BODY WORK, Kindnesses, Whirled Peas, FUN!

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

2013 - Day 142/223 - Wednesday...

These are some of the youngest girls.  I am training them to eat out of my hand and I have to tell you their beaks are kind of sharp.  A couple of them and friendlier than the others, but you can only be friendly with so many chickens.  Vera will always be the favorite, but a couple of these are earning points.  The silver laced Wyandottes are getting better about roosting with the older girls, and tonight will be one of the big tests, to see if the go into the big coop with a minimal amount of encouragement.

Today went pretty much as planned.  I got into the office early, did some catching up, went to a couple outside appointments and then back to the office to STAY caught up.  Well done if I do say so myself.

Tomorrow will be a little bit busier.  I have a couple meetings early in the morning, need to deliver my Meals-On-Wheels route, then attend an afternoon meeting.  Tomorrow night is the TREPAC Prom, so I have to do something about figuring out what I will be wearing for the occasion.  Not sure what it will be, but I expect it will certainly be worth tuning in tomorrow night for the photo documentation.

The Internet is not always your friend.

Deeds, Actions, Changes, HAND FEEDING, Kindnesses, Whirled Peas, FUN!

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

2013 - Day 141/224 - Tuesday...

It is interesting to watch the rain come down out here on the edge of nowhere.  It is even more interesting watching the chickens turn into angry birds because it is raining and chickens (obviously) do not have the sense God gave a Goose.  Which poses the question, do gooses have more or less sense than chickenses?  Plus, it will be interesting to see what spell-check comes up with to change (correct?) those two words.

A nice quiet and productive day, but as predicted yesterday, I am beginning to get things stacked up at the office.  It will all work itself out, and I will be all caught up again by the end of the week, just in time to let things get all piled up again for the anticipated day off on Monday.  Predictable chaos.

Tomorrow should not be too bad, I have a couple things in the morning, but that will leave me the entire afternoon to get things done, so it should be manageable.

Deeds, Actions, Changes, WET BIRDS, Kindnesses, Whirled Peas, FUN!

Monday, May 20, 2013

2013 - Day 140/225 - Monday...

It is a little bit breezy out here on the edge of nowhere.  AND HOT.  When I was turning into the driveway this afternoon, the thermometer on my car was reading 91 degrees.  HOT for the third week of May.  BUT, we are lucky that we have not had any really severe weather, we are thankful for that.  Once again, I am reminded that I am the luckiest man in the world.

It was not a terrible first day back in the office after a week away.  Things were really kind of calm, and I did my best to stay as caught up as I could.  I did a good job of it too.  Tomorrow I will start to get behind again.  I have a couple meetings tomorrow, a couple on Wednesday, a full day of meetings on Thursday, and a property walk through and a closing on Friday.  It will all work out!

The chickens are all doing well.  I am trying to get the youngest ones to trust me enough to eat out of my hand.  I think it will not be that hard to get them to trust me, it is just patience (which I have little of) that is required for that.

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

Sunday, May 19, 2013

2013 - Day 139/226 - Sunday...

It is VERY good to be home. 

When I got home last night, the HVAC on one side of the house (the side we sleep in) was not working.  The inside fan was working (blowing hot air) but the compressor was not working.  The condensation line was plugged up (I know, I know) and the float switch in the overflow pan was keeping the compressor from coming on as a safeguard.  It took most of the day today to get the line cleared and all that (including one trip to the hardware store in Salado) but everything is good now.  I will keep an eye on it for a couple days just to make sure everything is doing what it is supposed to do.

When I got around to feeding the cattle this afternoon, I confirmed that we had a new calf.  Jody told me this morning he suspected there was a new calf back there, and I thought there was one back there as well, and YEP, by George there is a new heifer calf back there.  Pretty as a picture.  I like the marking on her head, kind of looks like South America.  I am thinking of calling her Venezuela (maybe just Venus).  What do you think?

I am ready to go to bed already, and it is not even 8 o'clock.  As soon as I put the girls to bed, I will be in bed too.

Deeds, Actions, Changes, NEW HEIFER CALF, Kindnesses, Whirled Peas, FUN!

Saturday, May 18, 2013

2013 - Day 138/227 - Saturday...

To market, to market to buy a fat pig
Home again, home again, jiggety jig.
To market, to market to buy a fat hog
Home again, home again, jiggety jog.
To market, to market, to buy a plum bun,
Home again, home again, market is done.

I am home again and I too am least for now. Five days is a long time to be gone from he that you love. I don't care how close you can be with telephones and other electronic devices, it is not the same thing as going to sleep in your own bed, I don't how much you can try to retaionalize it, it is different. I think the travelling may be done for at least a couple months now. September, October and November are generally the busy travel months, but there may be a thing or two happening before those trips this year.
I am home again and I too am least for now. Five days is a long time to be gone from he that you love. I don't care how close you can be with telephones and other electronic devices, it is not the same thing as going to sleep in your own bed, I don't how much you can try to retaionalize it, it is different. I think the travelling may be done for at least a couple months now. September, October and November are generally the busy travel months, but there may be a thing or two happening before those trips this year.

I am home again and I too am least for now.  Five days is a long time to be gone from he that you love.  I don't care how close you can be with telephones and other electronic devices, it is not the same thing as going to sleep in your own bed, I don't how much you can try to retaionalize it, it is different.  I think the travelling may be done for at least a couple months now.  September, October and November are generally the busy travel months, but there may be a thing or two happening before those trips this year.
I was taking a nice brisk walk down Connecticut Avenue this morning, trying to make up for some the poor epicurean choices i had made over the last five or six days.  I really did not do too badly, but there was quite a bit of wine and other nysterious nibbling nibbles to deal with, so it was a little bit tiresome trying to keep everyne straight an on the up and up.  WHERE IS THE PHOTO OF THE DAY?  It seems to be somewhat AWOL,  Oh here it is,,,I had frgotten what the photo of the day was there temporarily but now I remember,  LOCK BOXES!  Everyone needs a decent Lock Box on occsion, and this one seems to be a doozy!

Deeds, Actions, Changes, Lock Boxes, Kindnesses, Whirled Peas, FUN!

Oh, and can you tell this entry was somewhat difficult to compose?  It;s true, fer sher.

Friday, May 17, 2013

2013 - Day 137/228 - FRIDAY!!!

Okay, I am almost done.  When you read my blog entry tomorrow, it will have been posted from the farm, and that will be a good thing.  I am ready to be home.

Early EARLY this morning I had my first meeting; Association Presidents and President-Elects.  It was a series of round table discussions on a variety of topics that are challenging our professional associations across the country.  There must have been 500 or 600 people in that room, the roar was deafening.  It was a good exchange of ideas, and worth the effort.

Then there was a break, and during that time I got my listed property through the option period, so that was a good thing.  All done.

I met Chris, Ruby, Amy, Victoria and Shannon for lunch at Open City Coffeehouse, and it was great to visit with them.  Chris, Ruby, Amy and Victoria just got into town last night for the Women's Council of REALTORS® portion of this Mid-Term Meeting.  They will be BUSY until Sunday and then they will be heading home.

After lunch, Shannon and I headed off to the National Association of REALTORS® Office Building here in the District, and it was a good visit to the headquarters.  I had never been to the offices, and the building is really unique and beautiful.  Very nicely done.  The purpose of the visit was to take a gander at the plaque with my name on it on the roof top Hall of Fame.  I think that sounds kind of conceited, but I did want to see it.  I am proud that I am one of 34 Texas REALTORS® in the Hall of Fame, and one of only 405 REALTORS® in the United States to have made that achievement.

You're welcome!

Deeds, Actions, Changes, FAME NAME, Kindnesses, Whirled Peas, FUN!

Thursday, May 16, 2013

2013 - Day 136/229 - Thursday...

It was a really good day today, lot of good and successful appointments, followed by a couple hours worth of a nap, and then some networking and fellowshipp with our Austin colleagues.  Overall, it was very good!

I made it to my first meeting this morning at 9AM, and made three more legislative visits before the day was done.  It was very good.  I made it back to the hotel by about 3PM and napped until about 5.  Then it was off to a networking happy hour with our Austin colleagues at the POV Lounge at the W Hotel.  This spot is supposed to have the best views of the DC area from its' roof top, but I am not sure I would go that far.  This is a photo of the White House from the roof top of the Lounge, kind of a good perspective. 

If I was 25 and rich, I would like to live in this place, our Nations Capitol!

Deeds, Actions, Changes, HILL VISITS, Kindnesses, Whirled Peas, FUN!

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

2013 - Day 135/230 - Wednesday...

Well, when I woke up this morning I had planned on just an ordinary, everyday journal entry for today, but then I remembered I was in our nation's capitol, so what the hell...  There are some things that you just cannot (I think) see anywhere else but here, and I NEED to have a photographic record of those things.

I was up early this morning for a 7 o'clock meeting (seems like days ago) and it was pretty interesting.  All about the key points we need to make to our elected officials; keeping the mortgage interest deduction, preserving the purpose of the FHA program and restructuring Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and encouraging the return of private capital mortgage financing.  And then we were off to the Hill to lobby!

It was a really long day, but we made time for lunch in the Rayburn Office Building cafeteria.  I have ALWAYS been a big fan of pocket protectors, but I think I found the holy grail of pocket protectors here.  There was some question in the beginning as to whether the wearer of this pocket protector was a man or a woman, but it ended up being a woman, a very vocal, opinionated (but very nice) woman.

We made it back to our respective Hotels about 6 o'clock, and then we were headed to dinner at about 8 o'clock.  We had dinner tonight at the only walrus restaurant in DC.  WALRUSES ARE US, and I had their signature baked walrus patties.  Really, after enough Merlot, you really don't pay any attention to the random whisker and (I swear to God) it tastes like chicken!

Time for bed!

Deeds, Actions, Changes, POCKET PROTECTORS AND WALRI, Kindnesses, Whirled Peas, FUN!

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

2013 - Day 134/231 - Tuesday...

Overall this was another pretty good day.  I was able to keep up with my e-mails from Austin while at the same time being out of the office attending meetings and attending functions in the nation's Capitol.  Please don't judge me...

In addition to a LOT of stuff that happened today, the highlight for me was being inducted into the RPAC Hall of Fame this evening.  I am honored to be one of 34 REALTORS® in the Great State of Texas to have achieved that honor, and it was nice for Cathy and Emily to accompany me to the ceremony.  It seems like I am in good company.

Tomorrow will be a LONG day, beginning at 7 AM (6 AM in Austin) for meetings and then I will be at the Metro at 11:15 to head for the Capitol for legislative visits.  That is always fun, but right now, I am tired and I am going to go to sleep!

Deeds, Actions, Changes, HALL OF FAME, Kindnesses, Whirled Peas, FUN!

Monday, May 13, 2013

2013 - Day 133/232 - Monday...

I cannot really remember the last time I just sat somewhere and laughed and laughed and laughed.  Well, actually I can remember the last time, I just can't remember the last time before that.  The last time I laughed and laughed and laughed was today, it started about 5:45 and lasted until about 7, when we were told to 'shut up' by a tour bus driver.  Well, that really did not stop us, but it did send us into 'covert' laughing.  I got into Washington about 5 o'clock and was supposed to meet up with Shannon and Emily at the Shoreham, and from the minute I walked into the bar and sat down, we were laughing like three idiots.  And is did not stop for a while.  It was fun, you should try it, and I should do it more often!  This is a picture of Shannon and Emily taken at the Lincoln Memorial looking back to the Washington Monument.

Overall it was a great day, I made it into the office pretty early, did some power real estate, went by the bank, got stuck in a road construction traffic jam on the way to the airport, made it to the airport in plenty of time for my flight, almost slid down the steps of the shuttle at the airport, slept most of the way to Washington from Austin, became embarrassed because my new suitcase is bigger than I am (practically), met up with Shannon and Emily, took a cab to Grand Central Station, got shushed by a tour bus driver (who was THAT CLOSE to graduating from an Ivy League school), barely escaped being arrested and spending a night (or two) in jail for bribing a governmental official (I just wanted to sit on Abe's lap), hailed a cab from Grand Central back to the Hotels (driven by a former Mortgage Broker) and now I am happily ensconced with Jelly Beans and a diet soda.

How could the day have been improved upon?  I don't think it could have been.

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

Sunday, May 12, 2013

2013 - Day 132/233 - Sunday...

I almost walked right past these cactus blossoms without even paying attention to them.  They are really quite beautiful, and we should have hundreds of blooms before the season is over.  These are the first I have seen this year, usually I see others blooming before I notice ours, but not this year.

Today was a great day unless you were a chicken.  Miguel and I (okay mostly Miguel) remodeled the chicken coop, much to some of their dismay.  In the middle of all the banging and building, one of the red girls decided she just HAD to get into her nesting box, and I guess when the urge hits, you just have to answer the call.  That was pretty much how it was for most of the day, chickens coming and going and investigating and poking their beaks into things that were none of their business.  Whatever.

That was the major accomplishment of the day, and it turned out very nicely.  We also got the cattle fed, found a short in the electric fence, got some grass trimmed, finished putting some stones around one of the front beds, lots of this and that.

I am in the middle of packing for my trip to Washington, DC.  The BIG suitcase I just bought is exactly that, or maybe it is just HUGE, because I think I have just about everything packed and I still have more than half of the space available.  It will get a little bit closer to full before I leave tomorrow.  It will be great for winter trips, though, with plenty of room for heavy coats and things.

Another Whatever!

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

Saturday, May 11, 2013

2013 - Day 131/234 - Saturday...

Well, I think it is almost time to harvest the wheat that is all around us.  Not sure, since I am not a farmer, but this stuff looks like it about ready to go.  This is in the field right across the road from us.

It was a good day today, I got some work done out in the front barn; the goal is to EXPAND the chicken coop tomorrow, so I needed to rearrange some things to make room.  Rearrange, give away, throw away, it is all the same.

Jody and I went into Georgetown this afternoon for lunch, and we stopped at Home Depot for some chicken coop supplies.  I hope everything will go as is planned.

This evening I went into Austin for the Home Builders Association Awards dinner.  It was a nice dinner and a good presentation.  You can read all about it in the paper in the morning.

It is past my bed time.

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

Friday, May 10, 2013

2013 - Day 130/235 - Friday...

This is actually a school bus with its' yellow flashing lights on as seen through my rain covered windshield this morning as I was on my way to work.  The lights never did change to red, but I stopped anyway.  After a couple minutes, the operator turned off the lights and went on his/her way.  Not sure if I was supposed to stop or not, but why risk it.  It was raining too, so what the hay!

We got about a third of an inch of rain overnight, about another tenth of an inch today, and ti is starting to be dribbly outside right now. 

I need to go put the girls to bed before it gets really rainy outside.

Looking forward to sleeping in a little late tomorrow.

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

Thursday, May 9, 2013

2013 - Day 129/236 - Thursday...

The Morning Glories on one side of the path have shown some small blooms...this is the second one I have seen on that side.  It is the side that has poorer development of the actual plants.  The plants on the other side of the path have wonderfully lush leaves and are climbing nicely, but they have not even produced little buds at all.  Interesting.

Today was a good day, business is good, office stuff is good, there was a good luncheon sponsored by the Austin Chapter of the Women's Council of REALTORS® and I got some GREAT information from it.  PERFECT!

President Obama was in town today, so everyone tried to avoid IH-35, which meant EVERYONE was on MoPac.  It took me over two hours to get home.  But I think it is interesting that the POTUS has been to Austin several times.  Says a lot about us I think.

Getting ready to go out of town for a week.  I will leave on Monday for Washington, DC and will return on Saturday.  Mid-Term Hill Visits are really great, and I like the excitement and the energy.  It will be a good time visiting with all our colleagues from across the country and making sure our elected officials know the concerns we REALTORS® have for our profession and for the home buying public.  We are pretty good drivers of the economy!

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

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

2013 - Day 128/237 - Wednesday...

I am telling you the truth; these chicks (Blue Cochins) are not particularly photogenic, or maybe it is just a testament to my poor photographic skills, person, these chicks are truly beautiful.  Maybe not as beautiful as one of the Crested Polish that we have (who, unfortunately I suspect is a boy-chick, and may soon become familiar with the inside of a stew-pot) but beautiful in a Blue Cochin chicken kind of way.  There are all different kinds of beauty, don't forget.

Today was a busy day and I have been beat-up on enough for one day.  I attended five (count-em, five) meetings of one variety or another, was in the office before AND after the meetings and got another deal negotiated to a happy ending before the Option Period ran out. 

We are in a really good market, and we are fortunate to be practicing real estate in Central Texas.

I suspect tomorrow will be less busy, but that could change at any moment.  Stay tuned...

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

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

2013 - Day 127/238 - Tuesday...

As sunsets go, this one (and probably the photo I posted yesterday) would not make it into the Hall of Fame.  But as CLOUDS go, they both are worthy of Honorable Mentions!  Clouds are an interesting phenomenon.  I think many clouds are absolutely stunning.  Breathtakingly beautiful.  Exquisite.  BUT, if you think of clouds in terms of ELEPHANTS, you get a whole new appreciation of clouds.  Clouds are made up (don't quote me here) of water droplets, and water droplets are heavy.

Scientist Peggy LeMone says that a little cumulus cloud weighs about the same as 100 elephants! A thunderstorm cloud is like 200,000 elephants!

So there, too!  A whole new reason to look at clouds a little bit differently tomorrow!

So far, all is good on the chicken rebellion front.  The newest chicks are really curious and follow me and Jody around like we are the pied pipers of Chickenville.  I have not put them to bed yet, so we will see what happens when I do.

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

Monday, May 6, 2013

2013 - Day 126/239 - Monday...

Don't let the photo of this sunset fool you, the end of the day was CRAZY!

Everything was going just fine until I got home.  First there was a chicken revolt.  All of the girls are now free range chickens, and today was the first day of freedom for the youngest of the girls.  As it was getting towards sunset, I think there was a bit of confusion as to where everyone was supposed to be.  Some of the intermediate girls were in the youngest girls coops and some of the youngest girls were in the intermediate girls coops.  The Silver laced Wyandottes were just fine hanging out above the gray, but VERA was in the thick of the whole thing, chasing anything and everything that could be chased.

I finally got all that chicken mess straightened out, and got inside the house.  Google (I hate the Googles) insisted that I re-sign in to my e-mail account (I hate it when they update something), and that went pretty successfully.  Then when I was checking in to my Blogger account, they said that password had been changed (news to me) so I had to go through a whole rig-a-ma-roll to get that straightened out, because I knew none of you could wait to hear about the chickens and all the rest of the mundane crap that goes on in my (less than interesting) life.

I smell a Popsicle with my name on it.

Deeds, Actions, Changes, CHICKEN WARS, Kindnesses, Whirled Peas, FUN!

Sunday, May 5, 2013

2013 - Day 125/240 - Sunday...

Well, it was a busy and fun (ultimately) day.  I got up about 5:30 and read the paper and had my morning coffee.  I had some more work to get done, and everything was finished by about 11:40 AM.  Jody and I were having our traditional spring soiree today, and it could not have been a more beautiful day for it.  You could not have ordered a better day.  When our first guests started arriving, it was still a little nippy sitting on the front porch.  Out in the back where the sun was more accessible, it was just great.  I even have a little bit of color on my face!

The last guests left about 5 o'clock, so everything was great.  Calm, cool, everybody just chilled.  It was kid friendly, so little ones were enchanted with the chickens and the cows and lots of new stuff to look at.  Even some of the big kids were happy to mess with the chicks and cattle.  Thanks for taking this picture Chris, I like it a lot!

On a sad note, when I went back out to check on the chicks after everyone had left, my little chick with the bad beak (Fancy) was dead.  She had been looking withdrawn and more feeble in the last couple days, and I really noticed that she was not doing too well earlier this afternoon.  She has gone on to her reward in chicken heaven, where she now has the best beak of all the chickens. 

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

Saturday, May 4, 2013

2013 - Day 124/241 - Saturday...

This arrived from our friends Carolyn and Joe Mac.  The box it was shipped in fit PERFECTLY inside the mail box, it was getting it out of the mail box that was a little bit of an issue.  The tag says TY BALLZ, so we have named 'him' BEE BALLZ.  Cute as a bug!  Thanks guys, and when will you be coming for a visit?

Today was a busy day, but it started out kind of slowly.  When I first went out this morning, it was actually too cold to do anything, I just kind of walked around in circles, but after a couple hours of procrastination, I got (somewhat) motivated.  I finished cutting the grass, messed with the chickens, power washed the back patio and the pool deck.  I have never been a big advocate of power washing things, but it made a big difference in the teak furniture under the gazebo.  It was fun to actually see progress being made.

Jody and I went into Georgetown for lunch at Schlotzky's.  They make a great salad and their blue cheese dressing is the best.  We also made a stop at Home Depot and brought home a truck full of bougainvilleas for around the pool.  Things are looking very nice, now I just have to keep it looking like that.  The passion vines in the front bloom nicely, and I think they will bloom all summer, and the grape vines are really doing well this year.  I think they finally settled in.

The temperatures have been pretty cool the last couple days.  It did make it up to 85 degrees this afternoon after a low in the lower forties this morning.  The high is supposed to be about 75 tomorrow, so that will be perfect!

Deeds, Actions, Changes, BEE BALLZ, Kindnesses, Whirled Peas, FUN!

Friday, May 3, 2013

2013 - Day 123/245 - Friday...

I am not really sure if you have even seen photos of these girls since they have been free-ranging.  These are two of the four Silver Laced Wyandottes, and today they are eleven weeks old.  They are the oldest of the newest girls; the oldest of the chicks that I get this year.  These came to us when they were already three weeks old, the oldest chicks we have ever bought.  Usually we get chicks that are a couple days old and raise them from LITTLE BITTY CHICKS.  I think these are really pretty, and it will be interesting to see them when they get bigger.

Today was a very good day; no trauma, no drama, nothing but good.  I introduced REALTOR® Ethics to new members of our Association (there were 119 registered).  This is not the worst time to be a real estate professional in Austin.  Then it was off to the office to get some work done.  In the late morning, my friend (and agent) Chris came in, and we went off and played hooky for a couple hours, that was fun.

I left the office today at about 3 o'clock, got home and tried out the power washer I borrowed from my friend Steve (works pretty good) and then cut some grass.  I will finish power washing the trees and things tomorrow, and there are several things I have on my list to be accomplished.

Right now, as I write this entry, I am waiting for the sun to get a little lower so I can go put the girls to bed, and then I am going to put myself to bed.

Looking forward (already) to a pile of eggs in the morning.

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

Thursday, May 2, 2013

2013 - Day 122/243 - Thursday...

Well the cold front has made it through the started early this morning.  Actually, when I got up this morning it was about 67 degrees, and it did not get any better.  Before I left for work, I went out to let the girls loose, and it was dribbling rain and pretty darned windy.  BUT, it is not 50 degrees cooler than it was 24 hours ago.  By my calculations (and this photo documentation) 24 hours and 5 minutes after my last reading, it was 36 degrees cooler, AND SINKING.  It is expected to get a bit cooler over night, no freezes expected here, but some possible in the Hill Country.  Gonna be another cool one tomorrow night, but the weekend is looking pretty darned marvelous!

Today was another day full of minor (and ever MORE minor if that is possible) accomplishments.  It was kind of one of those gnatty days, where gnats are flying around your head and you keep swatting at them to go away, but it has absolutely NO EFFECT.  Just an aggravation.  Interestingly too is the fact that I drink (consume) a tremendously increased amount of coffee on a daily basis, and I pretty much remain calm through it all.  I have not YET tried intravenous coffee feedings, but I suspect that will be next.

THE HIGHLIGHT of my day was the graduation luncheon of the 2013 Texas REALTOR® Leadership Program attendees.  These guys have participated in a three or four month program to face the leadership challenges of our Associations, and it was a really fun graduation and luncheon.  They are all to be congratulated for their dedication and participation in our profession.

I have an early morning appointment tomorrow, hob-nobbing with the latest batch of REALTOR® members at the Austin Board.  NEW MEMBER ORIENTATION.  It is always fun and interesting to meet and to be able to share things with new (and/or returning) agents to our Association.  I will have the opportunity to do something I LOVE, giving a 20 or 30 minute overview about REALTOR® Ethics.  I really like that.

This weekend is going to be fun, hopefully it will not be a long day, I have a couple things I need to do on the way home, then I want to get my Sunday chores done on Saturday this week.  Gonna be busy on Sunday!

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

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

2013 - Day 121/244 - Wednesday...

I am posting this screen-shot of the weather forecast today.  This time tomorrow it is supposed to be 50 degrees cooler.  Craziness.  The all time low temperature for Austin in May is something like 42 degrees, and it is possibly going to break that record.  Not supposed to freeze here, but there are freeze warnings for the Hill Country, west of us.

Today was a good day of sitting in the office.  Lots of accomplishments were made, and that was a good thing.  For the first day of the month, it was amazingly not crazy, so I think it is important to count your blessings about that.

I am reading a (maybe yes maybe no) interesting book called The Painted Girls.  It is about, well here is the review I copied off the Internet: 

A heartrending, gripping novel about two sisters in Belle Époque Paris.

1878 Paris. Following their father’s sudden death, the van Goethem sisters find their lives upended. Without his wages, and with the small amount their laundress mother earns disappearing into the absinthe bottle, eviction from their lodgings seems imminent. With few options for work, Marie is dispatched to the Paris Opéra, where for a scant seventeen francs a week, she will be trained to enter the famous ballet. Her older sister, Antoinette, finds work as an extra in a stage adaptation of Émile Zola’s naturalist masterpiece L’Assommoir.

Marie throws herself into dance and is soon modeling in the studio of Edgar Degas, where her image will forever be immortalized as Little Dancer Aged Fourteen. There she meets a wealthy male patron of the ballet, but might the assistance he offers come with strings attached? Meanwhile Antoinette, derailed by her love for the dangerous Émile Abadie, must choose between honest labor and the more profitable avenues open to a young woman of the Parisian demimonde.

Interesting (I really am a fan of Degas) but tough to keep up with.  There are three narrators of the story, and you have to pay attention, but overall it is a pretty interesting (and probably accurate) description of life in Paris over a century ago.

Tomorrow will hopefully be a good day as well; a couple meetings in the morning, and luncheon in the late morning and then back to the office in the afternoon.

What can I say?  Life is good!

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