Saturday, November 30, 2013

2013 - Day 334/31 - Saturday...

This was an absolutely GREAT DAY, except for the overcast parts and the 'I'm cold' parts and the other parts that I did not care for very much.  Otherwise, it was GREAT!  I did remember that I had an appointment at Berry Springs Park to get some firewood.  I love their firewood; a mix of hickory and pecan wood, lovely.  It burns beautifully.  This is the second year that we have gone there for our firewood.  Very nice folks, and not as expensive as you would think.  $10 for a wheel barrel full, and we got thirteen wheel barrels full in the truck.  I think that is at least a cord of wood, and for $130 I think it is a great bargain.

Other than that, I took a couple naps, Jody and I went into Georgetown and had lunch at Schlotzsky's, and then I came home and took another nap.  There is a very nice fire in the stove right now, and as soon as I put the finishing touches on this journal entry, I will be in the living room with Jody finishing off a piece of pie.

Gotta go...

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

Friday, November 29, 2013

2013 - Day 333/32 - Friday...

Okay, now it's Friday...

Even though it is Friday, today seemed a lot like Sunday, because I actually got a lot of stuff done around the house.  Got up, made a pile of eggs, drank a lot of coffee, took the trailer off the truck, did some work in the office, went into Taylor got gas in the truck, two gas cans and two diesel cans of diesel fuel, got some cattle feed, came home and spied what looked to be a new calf in the back pasture.

Yep, please meet Violet's newest calf, born yesterday (or really early today, but I am calling it yesterday).  Looks like a heifer calf, but again, I never really call them til I see them pee.  Names under consideration right now are; Turducken, Giblets, Pilgrim, Casserole and Dark Meat.  Let me know which one you prefer.

When I was putting gas/diesel in the truck and the cans, I also needed some air in the truck tires.  $120 worth of fuel and I had to pay $2 to put air in the truck tires.  I explained to the cashier that I had just put $120 of gas/diesel in the various receptacles and she told me they don't give free air anymore because people had been abusing it.  Really?  Stealing AIR?  AIR?

I also went to Wal-Mart where it was not crowded at all.  I bought some LED lights to replace the ones on the front fence, and some HVAC filters.  In case you were wondering and had been avoiding the Tractor Supply Company because of their 'cashier challenges', you do not need to put off your trip any longer.  All the cashier's from Tractor Supply have (apparently) left that company and gone to Wal-Mart (did they get a raise?).

I'm just sayin...

It was a busy day, and I did not even get into the part where I drove into Austin to run some errands and do a little bit of office work and got stuck on IH-35 for a LONG TIME because of a rather inconsequential two-vehicle altercation that resulted in NINE Police/Fire vehicles responding and backing up traffic for seven miles.  No, I am not going to get into that story with you today.

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

Thursday, November 28, 2013

2013 - Day 332/33 - Thanksgiving...

It is about 9:30 at night, Jody and I just got home from having a wonderful Thanksgiving Dinner with Michael, Lynda, Josh and Mary Ann.  We have plenty to be thankful for.

While I was sitting here in the office, I heard a chicken outside.  I had already been outside to read the meters, and sow no evidence of loose chickens, so I had closed the gate to their coop.  About ten minutes later, I heard a chicken outside the window.  I got up and caught the girl and was headed to the coop where I saw another chicken on the path.  I caught that one and put it into the enclosure.  Now there is another chicken outside the office window, and so far I have not been able to catch that one.

I will try again, but that girl may be on her own for the night.

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

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

2013 - Day 331/34 - It Only Feels Like Friday...

It is really Wednesday, no matter what it feels like.  BUT, I will take advantage of this and sleep extra late tomorrow morning.

I had an early breakfast meeting with several folks from the Austin Board and Congressman Lloyd Doggett.  We met at Sweetish Hill Café on West Sixth Street and we all sat around for close to an hour and talked about housing, governmental opportunities to make things better and a lot of this and that.  It was interesting, because he acknowledged the Installation next week and gave his regrets for not being able to attend.  It was a great breakfast, good coffee, good conversation and good points made on all sides.

Then it was off to work.  We had a PM meeting in the AM (a day ahead of schedule) and then I had a couple errands to run.  Back to the office, a little bit more work and then I headed out of the office for the long weekend.  More errands to run, some more successful than others, and then a meeting at the Austin Board. 

Once I got home this afternoon (early for me, just about 4 o'clock) I delivered some Thanksgiving Pies to the neighbors, read the meters and cleaned out the stove.  We have had a fire in the stove for about a week now, so there was a good bit of ash.  Pretty much cleaned out, and now we are back to having nice big fires.  On Saturday I have an appointment to go get a truck load of Pecan Fire Wood, so that will be great,  The Pecan wood burns very nicely.

Jody had a hankering for Frito Pie tonight, so instead of making it in the bag, he made a Frito Pie Casserole,  Very good!  Tomorrow evening we will go to our friends Lynda and Michael's for Thanksgiving Dinner.  Friday I have to go back into Austin to pick up some stuff for next week, and I need to go into Taylor to get some cattle feed.  I have been getting the feed in Bartlett, but Taylor has a feed that is good for cattle in the winter, helps them stay warmer.

Gonna be a busy four day weekend!

Deeds, Actions, Changes, FRITO PIE, Kindnesses, Whirled Peas, FUN!

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

2013 - Day 330/35 - Tuesday...

Yesterday afternoon, Hubert brought over some of Pauline's cookies and a loaf of banana bread.  I have only tried one of the chocolate cookies so far, and it is delicious.  I do not think Pauline has ever made (or at least I don't remember) these cookies with chocolate in the, but they sure are good.  I will give the banana bread a try in just a little while.

I was in the office most of the day today, and (like my friend Debbie said) I am "feeling accomplished".  I left the office at about 3:15 or so, and made it home shortly after 4 o'clock, but before I left, my friend Dawn came by to visit carrying a great big Apple Pie as an early Thanksgiving gift,  It looks yummy too, but we have not cut into it yet!
  I had an appointment to take the Polaris into the dealer for a check-up, and I hope to pick it back up on Friday.  I have a lot of things planned for Friday.

Tomorrow will be a busy day again, and I only expect to work (in the office anyway) until about 1 o'clock or so.  I have a breakfast appointment (8 o'clock), then some shopping to do and then an appointment at the Board on the way home.

It's gonna be good.

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

Monday, November 25, 2013

2013 - Day 329/36 - Monday...

Righty-tighty, Lefty-Lucy.  Even though I do not expect it to freeze overnight, there is a chance that we could see some freezing temperatures overnight on Tuesday night.  We had more rain today, the long, steady drizzling FREEZING COLD kind of rain.  In the last five days, we have had almost two inches of rain, but that is supposed to be over with tomorrow, and the sun is expected to make an appearance early in the New Year.  This is what it is like to live in Cleveland, as best I can imagine.  ANYWAY, the whole reason for the righty-tighty thing is because I went out and shut off the water to the cattle troughs earlier this evening.  Just in case...and it is better to do it today than it would be tomorrow.

Tomorrow I have an appointment to take the Polaris in to the dealer for service (just about a year late for its' first service).  I expect they will really not care all that much, just as long as I get it taken in.

In addition, I am pretty much scheduled to be in the office all day tomorrow, and I hope to get a lot of work done in anticipation of getting five days worth of work one in three days (or in my case two days because I spent ALL DAY today in a Board Meeting).

I am looking very forward to the long weekend, expecting to get lots of sleep and maybe even go to a movie.  What are the odds?  Although I am easily influenced, I rally think I will be able to steer myself away from the Black Thursday (Friday) sales...maybe, maybe not.

Deeds, Actions, Changes, RIGHT-LEFT, Kindnesses, Wh
irled Peas, FUN!

Sunday, November 24, 2013

2013 - Day 328/37 - Sunday...

Oh yeah, I am the trash-man (no liquids please)!  By the end of my volunteer shift, my standards were reduced and I was accepting liquids and trash of all sorts.  The Austin Empty Bowl Project today was another great success...maybe just the best ever!  Although it was rainy and cold, the quick thinking on the part of Hester and Kris (and most likely the venue management) meant that folks did not really have to endure the bad weather, but were, for the most part, sheltered and kept warm.  It was a really tremendous event, and next year (the 18th) will be even better.  Onward and Upward!  It was especially nice to re-connect with someone I like VERY MUCH, Kelly.  I need to see if I can find her on FaceBook.  AND, it was great to see my colleagues volunteering their time; Kerry, Ruby and Chris.  Thanks guys!

I got home and crawled onto the big blue chair and snoozed for a bit before getting up and going into Georgetown for dinner.  Jody and I went to the Catfish Parlour for dinner, always really good.

There are rumors (I don't believe it, but I will check back in with you tomorrow) that there will be sleet and freezing rain overnight and into Tuesday.  It just reeks of Weather Weenies if you ask me.  BUT, a lot will depend on what the School District does as to whether or not we have business as usual tomorrow.

Deeds, Actions, Changes, EMPTY BOWL, Kindnesses, Whirled Peas FUN!

Saturday, November 23, 2013

2013 - Day 327/38 - Saturday...

Though the weather outside may be frightful, the spirit INSIDE tomorrow at the Empty Bowl Project will be DELIGHTFUL.  This just in from Empty Bowl HQ:  , The 17th Annual Empty Bowl Project will take place, rain or shine.  Much of the event will be moved indoors to accommodate our guests and volunteers.  Please dress appropriately for the weather.  We have lots of hot soup, a great music lineup, and plenty of bowls.  We look forward to seeing you all!  Jody and I actually just got home from the Preview Party and it was very nice and very well attended.  If you have even half a chance, please go out and support this great effort that benefits The Capital Area Food Bank and Meals-On-Wheels.  If you need more information just click on this link:  http://www/  Thanks!

It was a busy day today, got up, messed around, made a pile of eggs, read the paper, drank a LOT of coffee, worked on a presentation I was making to the National Association of Hispanic Real Estate Professionals, and then headed into the office.  I got back home around 4 o'clock and then Jody and I headed back out to the Empty Bowl Preview Party.

Gonna be a busy night!

Deeds, Actions, Changes, EMPTY BOWL, Kindnesses, Wh
irled Peas, FUN!

Friday, November 22, 2013

2013 - Day 326/39 - Friday...

Holy Lightning Batman, what's all that shakin' going on?

Most of the night last night was spent trying to soothe the Boy Dog.  Neither Jody or I remember any mention of lightning and thunder, so we did not put his ThunderShirt on him until after the noise started.  We tried sleeping with the lights on in the bedroom, so he really could not pay attention to the flashes of lightning, and with the tv on so he (maybe) would not hear the thunder.  Didn't work.  I took him to the closet, and that did not do any good.  Jody took him into the den and fell asleep in his chair.  Overall, it was just a long, sleep deprived night.  I am certain I slept more than it feels like I did, but it does not feel like I got much sleep at all.  This photo was actually taken yesterday before the rains started.  The weather prognosticators say we may not see the sun again until next Thursday.  I am already grumpy.

Adding to the grumpiness, I was in a meeting in Marble Falls today from 10 AM until almost 6 PM.  That makes for a long meeting.  Jody and I were supposed to go out for dinner tonight at a new restaurant we had net tried before, so that was called off.  We decided I would stop at Wendy's and bring home some chili.  It was a good plan until they said they were out of chili.  WHAT?  OUT OF CHILI?  I can comprehend someone being out of key lime pie (well, not really because no one around here knows how to make a key lime pie.  DO YOU HEAR ME SHANNON?), but how can Wendy's run out of chili.  SO, I had to devise an alternate plan and go to Schlotzsky's and get two half Originals and two bowls of chili and two mini-Cinnabon's for tomorrow morning.  AND WHEN I GOT HOME I discovered that they had cheated me out of one of the half sandwiches.  I will be escalating this call with management tomorrow.

For tonight, I am going to bed.

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

Thursday, November 21, 2013

2013 - Day 325/40 - Thursday...

I guess this guy is pretty used to me checking the meter.  This is not the first time this guy has been featured on the journal, it is however, the first time that he was enjoying the shelter on top of the meter.  It was not really a problem, I could see the numbers I needed so there was no need to really disturb him.  It always does surprise me when I see him in the enclosure, sort of like when you run your hand up under a rat snake in one of the nesting boxes in the chicken coop.  With a frog, however, I HARDLY ever run screaming like a girl.  Hardly ever...

Today was a really amazing day, I was on a manic high for the entire day, beginning at about 4:30 this morning when I checked e-mails for the first time.  All I can say is, my friend and colleague is AMAZING. 

There were only three clients on our Meals-On- Wheels route today, I cannot think of the last time that we had that few clients.  Those we had, however, were happy to see us.

Going to Marble Falls tomorrow, that should be kind of fun!

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

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

2013 - Day 324/41 - Wednesday...

There is not much about me that I think is special, but there is one thing (I think) that stands out above the others.  I am the luckiest man on earth.  I know, I know, many folks stake a claim to that, but really, I AM the luckiest man on earth.  One of my lucky attributes is that, every now and then, I see something beautiful where other people just take something for granted.  Quite often it is in the shape and grandeur of clouds, much to the chagrin of many of you that follow this journal on a regular basis.  Today, I saw these lovely blooms, hundreds of them, climbing a wall on the corner of South Congress and Riverside Drive.  There they were, minding their own business, just BEGGING for someone to pay attention to them.  The other folks that were putting gasoline in their cars looked at me like I was crazy (honest they were, I know what that look looks like) when I left the nozzle in my car and walked 75 feet away to take this photo.  And once I took a minute to take a look at the picture, they are even more beautiful than I remembered them to be, and that is generally not something that happens with a digital photograph.  You are welcome!

Good day in the office today, got lots of stuff done before I headed out for a variety of meetings and appointments.  Tomorrow will be a day of not so many (but not less important) chores and meetings, including my Meals-On-Wheels route.  Fun times!

Deeds, Actions, Changes, BEAUTY, Kindnesses, Wh
irled Peas, FUN!

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

2013 - Day 323/42 - Tuesday...

It was a full house today at the Austin Board, and the overflow was in a separate auditorium with live AV feed.  Great discussion with the Association members about listing syndication.  It is all about education, and giving the Brokers the authority to make the decision about what is best for their listings.  Nothing will really change if the Brokers don't want change, it is just their decision to make.  Nothing more, nothing less.

It was also a really good day in the office today.  The Meals-On-Wheels route I have been delivering (okay not the same route all the time) since 1997 is no longer MY route.  It is now the company route, I am sharing it with them.  Okay, our office is helping me with the responsibility of delivering.  It was a great training session; MOW came to the office for the training, and it is a lot different now than it was when I started in 1997.  Very much more sophisticated now than it was then.  Maybe I should try to sophisticate myself up, what do you think?

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

Monday, November 18, 2013

2013 - Day 322/43 - Monday...

This photo became much more interesting because my friend Steve taught me how to crop photos a couple weeks ago.  Easy schmeezy!  I am glad I got to see this sunrise because it was WAY DARK by the time I got home tonight.

Typical office day; worked, checked Face Book, worked, checked Face Book.  You get the idea.  I was in the office until about 2:30 and then headed out to a couple meetings.  I am actually doing a little bit of real estate along the way as well.  What a concept.

Tomorrow will be a morning in the office and an afternoon at the Board, but there will be great accomplishments in both arenas!

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

Sunday, November 17, 2013

2013 - Day 321/44 - Sunday

My opinion of myself as a genius was confirmed today when the photo sensor that I replaced yesterday shut off the flag light when the sun came out.  I should have majored in electrical engineering in college.  Okay, make that I should have majored in SOMETHING in college, something other than Fraternity and Spades.  BUT, I AM a wicked Spades player.

I got to sleep in a little bit late this morning.  Got some grass cut at, and between me and Miguel we managed to get the chicken coop cleaned out, the cattle fed, the grass cut from the fence line at the back pasture, the electric fence fixed (these electric fences are tricky) and some weeds pulled up in the front.  The stove also got cleaned out so I am ready for the next time we need to build a fire.

Right now, however, we have turned the air conditioner back on.  It was 90 degrees today, and just a few days ago it was threatening to freeze.  There is really nothing unusual about that.

It either will or it won't.

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

Saturday, November 16, 2013

2013 - Day 320/45 - Saturday...

Last night as we were leaving for Steve's Birthday party, we noticed a box lodged under the gate up by the road, and a sticky note stuck to the gate.  It turned out to be a UPS box that was left up by the road and not brought up to the house.  We must have a new driver in the area, because usually the boxes are left on the porch or by the garage.  Is this a sign of the times?  Has UPS been taken over by the USPS?  Anyway...

I put the box in the trunk since we were heading to Austin, and I did not want to have a box on the back seat of the car.  I remembered the box this morning and opened it after breakfast.  It was these two beautiful cows sent from our friend Joe Mac and Carolyn in Mississippi.  Joe Mac served in the Navy for many years, and it seems one of his ship mates made these two cows.  We think they are great and wanted to share them with you.  Thanks Joe Mac and Carolyn, they will have a place of honor here on the edge of nowhere!

I did manage to stay in bed extra long today.  I got up, made coffee, read the paper and made a pile of eggs for me and Jody.  I thin went out to dismantle the photo sensor on the flag light outside.  We have (literally) paid hundreds of dollars in the last month to get this sensor fixed, and it still is not working.  I took the whole thing apart (took photos of which wires went to what, just in case) and went to four different placed before I found the $6 sensor.  Came home, put it all back together, and it immediately came on.  You would think that was a good thing, but it is a photo sensor, and it should only come on when it is dark outside.

So, that leaves me with two possibilities.  First, the high dollar electricians wired it together incorrectly and it is 'hot' all the time OR the sensor just needs to settle in, and maybe when it gets light in the morning it will shut itself off like it is supposed to.

Time will tell...

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

Friday, November 15, 2013

2013 - Day 319/46 - Friday...

This particular art installation is kind of a work in progress, and it has been progressing for about the last 90 days or so.  First there was the covered wagon.  Then they added the plastic longhorns.  I am not sure what that says about historical (or hysterical) accuracy, but I am just calling it as I see it.  Today they added the windmill and the water tank.  And this is all on a berm at the Crestview RV Center near Walburg.  Interesting.

As I reported yesterday, the city is infested with F1 people.  And tomorrow there will be the UT Football people.  There is not much room left for the people/people.  250,000 visitors to the city this weekend.  I hope they remembered their credit cards!

We went to help a friend celebrate his birthday tonight at Iron Cactus in Northwest Austin.  We deviated from our usual modus operandi slightly.  We are usually the first ones to arrive and the first ones to leave; today we were only the first ones to leave!  Happy Birthday Steve!

I get to sleep in a little bit tomorrow, and I am pretty happy about that.

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

Thursday, November 14, 2013

2013 - Day 318/47 - Thursday...

There have only been a few occasions in the (almost) five years that I have been doing this journal, that I have not posted a photo that was taken ON THE DAY of the posting.  I took a couple absolutely adequate photos this morning or an absolutely adequate sunrise, but it seems I deleted all of the photos not just the one that was all black (obviously badly aimed).  AND, since it was WELL beyond dark when I got home, there was not too much photo-worthy.  SO, the photo of the day is one that I took last Sunday in San Francisco at the Foreigner concert.  Pretty cool, front row seats, wormed my way up to the stage (just one woman was between me and the stage and the last time I saw legs like that they were firmly attached to a grand piano).  Needless to say, she was not willing to cooperate and I thought I had made her an offer she could not refuse, but she did.  ANYWAY, I hope you enjoy this photo.

As fate would have it, it did not even freeze here overnight, and there is no threat of another freeze in the long term (seven day) forecast.  Maybe a little bit of rain.  That is good news for the morning glories, and all the rest of the plants around the house.

F1 madness has started, and it will be CRAZY all this weekend.  Jody and I are going to a birthday party tomorrow night, but it will be a little bit north of the chaos, so that should be okay.  I am looking forward to the weekend!

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

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

2013 - Day 317/48 - Wednesday...

The freeze was much lighter than it was predicted, and that is a good thing.  We had a fire in the stove last night, first one of the season, and it was a big chore to a) get it started and b) keep it going.  It was still burning this morning when I got up and I added some firewood to it, and there were still some embers burning when I got home this afternoon.  I added some more wood to it, babied and pampered it, and it is going again very nicely.  It is not supposed to be as chilly tonight (depending upon whom you listen to), and then there will be a warming trend.  The morning glories took a little hit; there are some freeze marks on them but they are still going to survive for the most part.

A really busy day today, but tomorrow will be better.  Not as many meetings, deadlines and hurdles to jump over.  AND I get to deliver my Meals-On-Wheels route.  What could be better than that?

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

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

2013 - Day 316/49 - Tuesdy...

There is a lovely Iris blooming out by the circle, and a few others here and there.  I noticed it as I was all bundled up after having turned the water off to the troughs in the back pastures, in preparation of the light freeze we are expecting tonight and the next couple days.  This is not a good sign.  This is a bad sign.  This is not going to be helpful to the morning glories.  By the morning, there is a good chance they will all be nothing more than a mushy mass of deadness.  I am not really happy about that.  It is not supposed to be this cold this early.  Does not bode well.

First day back at work after being gone for a week, could have been worse, it could have been a LOT worse.  Overall, things were pretty great actually.

Did I mention that it is supposed to go down below freezing tonight.  I thought so.

Deeds, Actions, Changes, COLD, Kindnesses, Wh
irled Peas, FUN!

Monday, November 11, 2013

2013 - Day 315/50 - Monday...

I am very glad to be home.  Home is where the spouse is, and home is where the pink Croc knock-offs live.  If your feet ain't happy, ain't nobody happy!

There is the distinct possibility that this trip was too long.  Six nights, seven days.  It was a trip full of education, learning (even the small stuff, the anecdotal stuff is important) networking and future building.  Good annual event, and next year (it will be here before we know it) we will be in New Orleans.  Heads-Up to Tony and Aunt Dan, I will be there in a year!

I do not understand how airliner can be noted as late hours and hours before the flight time.  Again today, the plane was noted as late hours before it was supposed to even LEAVE the city it was coming to San Francisco from (in this case Orange County which is not that far).  They could have pushed the plane to San Francisco from Orange County in the time they started notifying us it was going to be late, and it would not have been late.  But I fear that is too reasonable an expectation, or as I would have said decades ago (and I say even to this day) that would have been too much like right.

Another good thing about being home is that is feels like it is 11:40 PM.  For the last six nights and seven days, I do not care what time it was, it felt like it was 11:40 PM, but I knew that it really wasn't.  But Now, I am comfortable with the fact that it is indeed (and it feels like) 11:40 PM.

I need to decompress for a little while, watch a little bit of television while lounging in the blue chair, have a Popsic
le and decompress.  For those of you that follow the fashion trends, I did participate in the ever so slightest bit of retail therapy, much of which was on sale.   I acquired some lovely new bow ties (I am getting better and better in the bow tying business, and I did find several pairs of socks at the San Francisco Sock Market.  I did not go crazy, I just went and got medicated.

Goo night, the self medication is about to kick in and I have forgotten how to start up the spell check,

Good night, I will report more tomorrow,

Deeds, Actions, Changes, TIME ZONES, Kindnesses, Whirled Peas, FUN!

2013 - Day 314/51 - Sunday...

OMG, today was a mot excellent day, I just hope spellcheck can keep up, it may require combat pay.  SPOILER ALERT!  Do not dismay, it all turns out okay.

Even though it is Sunday, the day began with a breakfast of NAR ANNUAL ATENDEES breakfast.  It was very nice, and there were many members of the Austin Board there.  The NAR Regional Caucuses began at 4 PM, and there was lots of great information shared with us.  After the caucuses, a few of us (Cathy, Steve and Susie) had a very quick dinner and then we headed back to the center to get our seats for the Foreigner Concert.

We ended up with front row seats, and when the concert started, I was actually one space back from the stage.  My ear balls  have endured more abuse in the last two days than they have been subject to in the last three or four decades.  I have been subjected to more decibels in the past two days than a reasonable person should be subjected to in a lifetime.  BUT, it was all really a blast (forgive the pun) and well worth it.  I was already almost deaf in one ear anyway!

The concert tonight at the NAR Annual Conference was FOREIGNER, and even though I had a low expectation for the event, it turned out to be really GREAT!  If you are a friend of mine on Face Book (if you are not, you are probably not reading this entry), you were able to see the posts from the concert.  It was absolutely great!  I managed to get to within one person of the front of the stage, and also managed to piss off a lot of uptight colleagues around me.  If you were not wanting to have a little bit of fun at the expense of your genteel ways, you should not have attended.  And NO, I actually did not step on your foot you old crone.  That is actually like the pot calling the kettle puce!

Afterwards, we all went to the 39th floor of the Marriott, and that was a lot of fun.  On the way out, Jim and Steve and I had this photo taken in the lobby.  I cannot wait to see the avalanche of spam that hits our in-boxes in the next several days!

Please excuse me, but there is a club sandwich awaiting my attention.

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

Sunday, November 10, 2013

2013 - Day 313/52 - Saturday...

This was another busy day, but it was also a great day.

It started out with a three-hour session beginning at 9 AM and continued all day.  Late afternoon was topped off with the General Session which included a keynote address by Hilary Rodham Clinton.  It was a very interesting address and there was a question and answer period following that.  Very nice, and I was really happy to attend that.

After that session, there was an evening of retro-fun sponsored by several affiliates of the National Association.  It included a Beatles cover group on one floor and an 80's theme on the lower floor.  I was sequestered in a side room and the music was VERY LOUD and I cannot imagine how loud it was on the dance floor.  IT was a lot of fun, and I was with a great group; Barb, Emily, Kimbrough and Steve.  Lots of fun, and it really did make me nostalgic for three decades ago. 

There is a breakfast tomorrow morning, and then some free time, and then more meetings in the afternoon.  Ready for bed now...

Deeds, Actions, Changes, LOUDNESS, Kindnesses, Wh
irled Peas, FUN!

Saturday, November 9, 2013

2013 - Day 312/53 - Friday...

It has been a full day of committee meetings, education classes, leadership training and trade showing.  From 8 AM until 4:30'ish.  Lots of walking.

I met up with my friend Rob from NYC who is also attending the conference.  He and Steve and I met up and went to a very nice restaurant called the Grand Café, which looked very different on the outside than it was on the inside.  It was in fact very grand, very nice, with pretty decent food.

It has been somewhat difficult to find a decent slice of key lime pie while here.  In fact, I think it is very difficult to find a decent piece of key lime pie anywhere!  After dinner, we went to the Cheesecake Factory and got a piece of key lime cheesecake, walked across the street to Union Square to consume it.  Really kind of fun.

Tomorrow my day begins at 10 AM, and it will be a FULL day again.

Deeds, Actions, Ch
anges, KEY LIME< Kindnesses, Whirled Peas, FUN!

Friday, November 8, 2013

2013 - Day 311/54 - Thursday...

There has been plenty of time devoted to serious, and there will be plenty of opportunities in the future for serious, but every now and then, there is the right time to be silly, and tonight there was an opportunity for one of those moments.  I shared a nice dinner tonight with Cathy, Shannon and Steve, and there was plenty of time for serious conversation.  We were surrounded by other colleagues from across the country, and the air was thick with ideas and contemplation.

And every now and then there was a good moment for laughing, whether it was networking with the folks at the adjacent table (colleagues from North Dakota), or greeting one of our Texas colleagues.

Today was a day full of meetings and training and education.  Mixed in with a good bit of networking and walking back and forth from here to there.  San Francisco is an interesting city, and this is only the second time I have visited.  The first time I was only here for one day, this time I have a few more days to actually see some of the city.  It is an interesting place, and I understand the appeal, but I do not think I will be packing up and moving any time soon.

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

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

2013 - Day 310/55 - Wednesday...

This was the first full day in San Francisco.  This is only the second time I have visited this city, the last time was about 13 or 14 years ago when I was participating in the California AIDS Ride, fundraising for AIDS care organizations and riding my bicycle from San Francisco to Los Angeles.  I think that was a seven day ride, and I can remember that it rained for one full day, and I have a picture of myself with my rain jacket, wet, cold, tired and looking a lot like Raymond Burr on a bike.  I do not have particularly fond memories of that particular day, but the ride overall was very satisfying and a nice accomplishment.

This is a photo that I took across the street from the Hotel, in Union Square. The Square is a real hot spot of activity, and among other things they were installing a very large Christmas tree.  I have photos of it but the photo of this flowering bush was a lot more interesting.  I have really no idea what the plant is, but it was tremendous and just covered with blossoms that actually hang down.  Very pretty.  Something in the back of my mind says this might be related to the 'nightshade' species of plant, and if that is accurate, the blooms might be poisonous.  It could happen.

Still trying to acclimatize myself.  Going to bed.

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

2013 - Day 309/56 - Tuesday...

Selfies are good, I don't care what anybody says.  This is a picture of me and Shannon in the cab coming back to the Hotel from dinner.

Well, the flight was delayed twice, but after everything was said and done, we made in to San Francisco a couple hours later than scheduled.  By the time we got to the Hotel, it was about 9:30 PM Austin time (I think). 

I got to the Hotel and got most of my stuff unpacked, and went down to the lobby and met up with Cathy and Shannon.  We went to a restaurant by the water, and had a nice dinner, and back to the Hotel.  Tomorrow will be a busy day, and I am tired...

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

Monday, November 4, 2013

2013 - Day 308/57 - Monday...

Okay, if it is the first Monday in November, that must mean that it is Wurstfest at one of the (two or three) Lutheran Churches in Walburg.  This is our fifth year to succumb to the offerings, and I have to tell you this one was not too bad.  I do have to report (Marci) that the threat and actual occurrence of precipitation in the area makes these folks a little bit unnerving.  Walk straight towards oncoming traffic and do not pay any attention to it, why don't you?  Divine intervention will most likely not come to your rescue when there is a brat and some sauerkraut involved.  Oh, and you over there in the pickup truck, why don't you just fishtail out of the parking lot (pay no mind to those County Sheriff's on either end of the parking lot.  AND ALL OF YOU, a genteel 'thank you' might be in order.  By the way, whoever said there is no inflation has not stood in these lines for the last five years.  But did I mention that it was better this year than in recent memory?  That is what I meant to say.

It had dribbled a little bit all day today, making folks kind of grouchy if you asked me.  We only got six eggs today and one dead bunny.  The bunny carcass appeared sometime between the time I got home (a little after 5) and when I went to put the girls to bed (about 6:30).  Interesting stuff goes on out here on the edge of nowhere.

Travelling to San Francisco tomorrow, and I have not even begun to pack yet.  I may put it off until the morning, and then again, I may not.

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

Sunday, November 3, 2013

2013 - Day 307/58 - Sunday...

Well, I survived the changeover from Daylight Savings Time.  It is black as pitch outside and it is not even 7 o'clock.  And I am ready to go to bed.

Today was a work day around the house.  We got the cattle fed, got the chicken coop cleaned out.  Miguel cut a lot of grass all around, and we got a lot of stuff straightened around.  We went in search of the calf that died earlier in the week, and there was NOTHING!  NOTHING!  There was the tiniest little bit of hair where I left him, about as much as the cat sheds here and there, that was all of it.  We assumed the coyotes would drag the carcass off somewhere, but there is NOTHING.  Nature's way.

The morning glories are really doing exceptionally well this fall.  This is the best they have ever done, and I can honestly say that we did not do anything special to help them along.  Now if the passion vines could just get settled in and make an effort, that would be really great.

We went into Round Rock for dinner tonight at Luby's.  We have not been to Luby's in probably four years, ever since the Luby's in Georgetown shut down.  Which brings to mind this question: there is a Sun City in Georgetown, how in the hell can a Luby's close down.  That is really not saying much for Luby's.  Here is another question; how many times can I put the word Luby's in a single paragraph?

Tomorrow will be a nice calm day at work, as will Tuesday.  Tuesday afternoon I head to San Francisco for a week, that should be an interesting convention.  This will be the penultimate trip of the year. 

Deeds, Actions, Changes, NOTHING I TELL YOU!, Kindnesses, Whirled Peas, FUN!

Saturday, November 2, 2013

2013 - Day 306/59 - Saturday...

I have just about finished setting all the clocks back an hour, and I am looking forward to sleeping later in the morning.  What I am not ready for is all the Christmas stuff; lay-away ads on the tube, last night a television commercial was subliminally playing Christmas Carols as background music.  Today I innocently walked into Kohl's searching for a yellow bow-tie, and the whole placed was decorated with garish red themed Christmas trees and decorations.  I am not particularly tired of it yet, but it looks like I could easily become tired of it.

I did make it to the feed store this afternoon to pick up some cattle feed.  Hopefully by tomorrow it will be dry enough for me to get them fed and take a fresh bale of hay back to the pasture.  We are supposed to get some more rain early next week, so that will be a good thing.  Keep it coming.  Hopefully we will get another cutting of hay before the first freeze (if there is a freeze).  That will be a great thing.

Tomorrow will be a work day around the house.  We have closed the windows for the most part.  The heater came on a couple times during the night, which was non-productive.  Hard to heat a house with the windows open.  Everything smells nice and fresh, though.

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

Friday, November 1, 2013

2013 - Day 305/60 - Friday...(no really)...

No REALLY!  TODAY IS FRIDAY, not yesterday.  However, Tomorrow will not be Friday but yesterday will be.  Go figure...

I did an ethics review this morning at New Member Orientation at the Board.  I like doing this, and it is interesting that you can get folks to do just about anything you ask them if you are in front of them with a lavaliere microphone.  Given a little bit of power (authority), you can make big changes!

If everyone else is going to turn their clocks back an hour before they go to bed tomorrow night, why should I wait for everyone else?  I have nothing really important to do tomorrow, at least nothing that would be affected (too much) if I was either an hour late or an hour early, so I think I will just go ahead and move the clocks back.  I have always liked being known as a trend-setter or contrary, you choose.

There was a lot of coyote action last night, and they were close by.  I first heard them around (figuring this out in the dark) Pauline and Hubert's house, and then they were in the pasture right next to our house.  It is interesting to hear them howl, but it is also interesting that the Boy Dog does not seem to be the least annoyed or agitated by them.

Tomorrow is Saturday, and I plan on sleeping late, but maybe not really.  It depends on what the clock says.

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