Clouds produce precipitation, like rain, snow, hail and sleet. Clouds can hold millions of gallons of water. They can travel at more than 100 mph with the jet stream. A common cloud is the cirrus (sp?) cloud, the high, wispy clouds that don't really make a difference. Cumulus clouds have a cotton like appearance and a depth that makes them appear like all sorts of objects. Nimbos clouds are dark, grey, featureless layers of clouds, often associated with frontal systems, and they are flat at the bottom. We, in central Texas, need Cumulonimbus clouds...they can produce severe weather such as hail, heavy rain, lightning, thunder and tornadoes. Bring them on! I like to consider clouds holding elephants. How many elephants would it take to weigh as much as a cloud? How much does a cloud, holding millions of gallons water weigh? Whatever. It was a good day. A nice morning walk, breakfast with the ROMEOs, in to the office to clear the desk which was not bad after five days out, and then back home. I did a little bit of this and that, and now it is time to settle in for the night. I can hardly believe that tomorrow is June. Where are the days going?
Tuesday, May 31, 2022
Monday, May 30, 2022
Volume 14 - Day 150/214, 2022 - Memorial Day
Schnauzer, in German, means beard. Schnauzer's were bred as farm dogs, but over time they moved from farms to people's homes, making them a popular breed. They don't shed much, which is a plus. Miniature Schnauzers are descended from Standard Schnauzers and Affenpinschers. I've never heard of those either, so you can look them up for yourselves. Callie has always been shy compared to Lexie, and she has tried her best to avoid photos. I took this photo of her a week ago just after she returned from the beautiful parlor. She looks kind of stoned, doesn't she?She is just not keen to be in the spotlight, but is happy to be the recipient of a belly rub if you can search her out. Over the three day weekend, I got everything on my chore list crossed off, plus a few other things as well. Nothing of any particular note happened today, and that has been perfectly okay with me. I have spied a few dogs taking advantage of the water station, so that is fun. I did go to PetsMart this afternoon, but I didn't buy anything. The coming week will be (should be) a relatively easy one. The only thing I have on my schedule is breakfast tomorrow with the other ROMEOs. I really need to start eating better, and I need to cut back on the caloric intake. I am on the cusp of subscribing to NutriSystem or another program like that...something that will just send me the food to eat with no decisions to be made on my part. If you have had any experience with those kinds of programs, let me know, good or bad. At this point I just don't seem to have the will-power or discipline to do anything healthy. Except the morning walks.
Posted by Billiam at 6:27 PM No comments:
Sunday, May 29, 2022
Volume 14 - Day 149/216, 2022 - Sunday
On average, dog owners walk their dogs nine times per week, lasting about 34 minutes for each walk. That means that people who walk their dogs spend about 11 days out of the year walking their dogs. Apparently, I am WAY below average. I tried (twice) to walk the girls since I moved to the Curious House. It went pretty well, and I need to start trying to do that again. I have spent big bucks on special harnesses and leashes, so I should start. I expect very much that it would be good for them and good for me. Maybe tomorrow. I have completed (sort of) my quest for putting a dog watering station out by the sidewalk. None of it was a creative thing spawned in my little pea-brain, but I saw another one in the neighborhood. SO...I got the bowl, and could not find a sign on line. I saw ideas, but none of them would work exactly as I envisioned it. I have had this letter board (from Target) for at least six or eight months, which is only a temporary solution at best. I will keep searching, but you get the idea. After walking this morning (sans dogs), I went and bought donuts, got the car washed, went to Walgreen's and took a series of naps. I have a plan to go sit out on the front patio and drink a couple glasses of wine. It is HOT but the humidity is pretty low, so I will make that work.
Posted by Billiam at 6:44 PM No comments:
Saturday, May 28, 2022
Volume 14 - Day 148/217, 2022 - Saturday
Today was a pretty good day...nothing terribly exciting, nothing particularly boring, either. The walk was good this morning, then I had a bagel and read the paper on-line. I am not keen that the local newspaper quit printing on Saturday and I HAVE to read it on-line. But...the more I do it, the more I don't hate it any more. What I don't like about it is, I cannot totally ignore the advertisements. I fear the printed newspapers will be gone soon, and I will adapt, but I won't be liking it. So, after reading the paper, I went down for a few naps. In between naps, I had bursts of energy and got a few things done. I am really kind of happy with the day went. I threatened to get in the car and go someplace every now and then, but I restrained myself, and the cars were not moved out of the garage. That is a total success in itself! I spent some time watering plants and cleaning the upholstery on the outside furniture, and sat outside for a little while. I actually took a nap on the back deck for a few minutes. It was lovely. The more I do, the more I love the Curious House. It just keeps getting better and better. Whenever I say I'm done, I think about it again, and suddenly I am no longer done. Tonight was the second house concert of the year, and it was the best attended house concert ever. We ended up with 25 or 30 neighbors here, and I am satisfied that everyone had a pretty good time. A few neighbors that I had not met yet, and many that are becoming regulars. A good time was had by all, and all were glad to be here. Good music, good friends, what could be better? The next house concert will be the last Saturday of September, in order to avoid the hottest part of the summer.
Posted by Billiam at 9:51 PM No comments:
Friday, May 27, 2022
Volume 14 - Day 147/218, 2022 - Friday
There are Little Free Libraries in all 50 states, 91 countries and on every continent except Antarctica. Todd H. Bol built the first Little Free Library in 2009, as a tribute to his mother who had passed away. Today, people everywhere (except Antarctica) have used Little Free Libraries to remember loved ones or people special in their lives. Some of us in the Friends Book Club listen to the book of the month via Audible, some use their Kindle or another electronic device, and some buy the book on line or check it out from the local library. I have a little bit of admiration for those that buy the books, but then decide to recycle them to the Little Free Library close to the pocket park in the neighborhood. Last months book is still there, but I think it will eventually be adopted. I worked from home today; my planned 8:30 zoom was cancelled, but there was another starting at 11 and going through 1:30. That one even ended a little bit early. I got my hair(s) cut at 2:30, stopped at Subway (I had a gift card) and HEB (I only spent $13 and change) and then I was home. I had ordered a couple bar stools on-line, and they were there when I got home. I had perfectly good bar stools when I moved in to the Curious House, but when Dan and Nancy moved, I bought theirs that they had only had for two or three weeks. I gave my others away. It did not take long for me to figure out I did not like the recently purchased ones (they were leather and I continually slid off them), and I am much happier with the ones that were delivered today. Even though I had to put them together. I also discovered that bar stools come in varying seat heights, so I ordered a seat height that does not make me feel like I am sitting at the kiddie table. Tomorrow will be another day!
Posted by Billiam at 8:11 PM No comments:
Thursday, May 26, 2022
Volume 14 - Day 146/219, 2022 - Thursday
Truth or Dare? Lip fillers will give you duck lips? Okay, dare! When done correctly, lip fillers create a subtle, natural enhancement in the volume and shape of your lips. Duck lips are usually the result of the person pumping in the filler, and not the filler itself. If done right, your lips will still look like your lips, only better. It was a good walk this morning, and I did get in to the office about 9:30. No, I didn't walk to the office. Tosalyn and I had a 10:30 appointment that took about 10 minutes, and then back to the office. We (really I) had decided today would be a Sandy's Cheeseburger Combo day. If you haven't been to Sandy's on Barton Springs Road lately, you need to go. No telling how much longer it will be there, it is a prime spot for a high-rise condo. After lunch, I got some more stuff done in the office, then headed home. I will be working from home tomorrow, zoom city. Housekeepers are also scheduled for tomorrow morning, and if I am lucky, I will not go anywhere tomorrow. What do you think? I had some extra time at lunch and got some fillers. I think they look just as good as any of the ones I have seen on Facebook.
Posted by Billiam at 7:08 PM No comments:
Wednesday, May 25, 2022
Volume 14 - Day 145/220, 2022 - Wednesday
Tonight was book club night. Book clubs come in many different forms, from traditional neighborhood small-group gatherings and virtual subscription services, to celebrity book clubs. The concepts are the same, a group of people reading the same book and engaging in discussions about their interpretations of the book. Yep, that is pretty much what we do, and we have a blast doing it. Marge and Dick hosted this month, and the book was set in Australia, and Marge came up with a scene of things in the book. Pretty cute! It was chilly this morning when we walked, and supposed to be cooler tomorrow morning. I got in to the office pretty early, and got everything done. On the way home, I stopped at Home Depot and got a few things, and took a quick nap. I tried my best to avoid the news, and had shredded wheat for dinner. Okay, actually I had potato chips for dinner, the shredded was kind of dessert. There is nothing much on my calendar for tomorrow, Friday will be an at home day. I will have two zooms that will go from 8:30 until 1:30, and then a haircut at 2:30.
Posted by Billiam at 9:48 PM No comments:
Tuesday, May 24, 2022
Volume 14 - Day 144/221, 2022 - Tuesday
The great egret (Ardea alba), also known as the common egret, large egret, or great white egret, is a large, widely distributed egret. Egrets are found on all continents except Antarctica. The great egret is generally a very successful species with a large and expanding range, mostly in temperate and tropical habitats. Streams, lakes, ponds, mud flats, saltwater and freshwater marshes are places egrets like to hang. Wooded swamps and wetlands are their locations of choice. Except cattle egrets. They hang in pastures, and when the cattle walk around, they stir up bugs, and that is like a cattle egret buffet. We saw this guy on our morning walk, and I was lucky to get this photo. I especially like the gnarly tree, I think it is a great contrast with the beauty of the bird. We had oatmeal after the walk, and then I did some shopping at HEB before heading in to the office. Got my desk cleared off, got some other work done, and then I headed off to a 4 o'clock reception, before leaving for home at about 5:30. Fingers crossed for rain tonight, they keep teasing us, but maybe it will happen. I am afraid to turn the sprinklers off, afraid I will jinx it.
Today is election day, and even though it may be too late, I hope some of you thought about the tragedy thrust upon Uvalde, Texas this morning. Think. Vote. Act. Invest. Today is the best time for change.
Posted by Billiam at 6:48 PM No comments:
Monday, May 23, 2022
Volume 14 - Day 143/222, 2022 - Monday
Cottontails and jackrabbits are common throughout most parts of Texas. There are several species of cottontail rabbits in Texas, but only one species of jackrabbit, the black-tailed. Jackrabbits are true hares and differ in many ways from cottontails, which are classed as rabbits. What you see in this photo is a blur of a rabbit we saw on our walk this morning. It was 64 degrees when we left this morning, three degrees warmer than yesterday. It was a good walk, and we certainly never lack for things to discuss. I got a whole new perspective on my way in to Austin this morning. I went all the way in on IH-35, because of a wreck on MoPac. It was in the northbound lane, I would have been in the southbound lane, but the car decided to take me down IH-35. Interesting stuff I have not seen in a little while. I got in to the office pretty early this morning, and lasted a little longer than usual, too. No errands to run on the way home, although I did consider stopping at the grocery. I will do that tomorrow morning, after breakfast with the ROMEOs. We are supposed to have rain overnight tonight...fingers crossed!
Posted by Billiam at 7:02 PM No comments:
Sunday, May 22, 2022
Volume 14 - Day 142/223, 2022 - Sunday
Apparently, a cold front came through last night, along with a little bit of rain. 0.36" of rain according to my gauge. I knew there was some lightning and thunder, but I slept through the rain. A cold front is the leading edge of cooler air masses. They have stronger temperature changes during the fall and spring (now) and during the middle of winter. We are happy that it came through last night and into the very early morning today. When I got up this morning, it was 61 degrees. I considered wearing a jacket on our walk, but toughed it out with just a t-shirt. In the end, I was glistening a little bit. Once I got home, I did some stuff around the house (my to-do list is all done), and then headed off to brunch with Alisha, Candy and Mike. After brunch, I went on a field trip, got pretty close to Marble Falls but came home empty handed. I was looking for something like the top tier of a three tiered water fountain, but could not find anything that would work. I may keep looking, but in the meantime, I have ordered a 1 gallon galvanized oval shaped tub to use at the canine watering station in front of the house. We will see if it gets dog approved. I took a couple naps today, and got a few more things done around the house, including the concentration of hoses for watering plants in the front. It is all about the convenience. If it is too much trouble, the plants will suffer, in my opinion.
Posted by Billiam at 7:11 PM No comments:
Saturday, May 21, 2022
Volume 14 - Day 141/224, 2022 - Saturday
The scientific name for the daylilly is Hemerocallis. The name is derived from two Greek words meaning beauty and day, referencing the fact that each flower lasts only one day. They typically bloom in a morning, and fade the following evening. I bought three ready-to-water things from Home Depot last year; two were daylillies and one was elephant ears. They did NOTHING last year, but I kept them, and this one bloomed, and I will plant it in the ground at some point. The elephant ears are doing better, and the other lillie is showing signs of life. I am writing this journal entry early because, after all, it is Saturday, which means wine night with the neighbors. We had a nice walk this morning, and then I took the girls to the beautiful parlor. They look mah-ve-lous, thank you very much. Then we were off to Estate Sales, and everybody got something, although I was the over-achiever. I need more crap like I need a hole-in-the-head. Whatever. After a nap, I went to Home Depot for a couple things, and then made a stop at Dairy Queen for some much needed supplies. I can't understand why I am not losing any weight. Mikey sent me two bags of Trader Joe's potato chips that he can get in Florida, but they have not been in stock here in central Texas for months.
Posted by Billiam at 5:15 PM No comments:
Friday, May 20, 2022
Volume 14 - Day 140/225, 2022 - Friday
A shadow is a dark area on a bright surface. It is caused by something blocking a source of light. A shadow's outline (called a silhouette) will have the same shape as the object blocking the light. The brighter the light is, the darker and clearer the shadow will be. Today was not a bad day at all. A good walk in the morning with the other ROMEOs (hence the photo), two zoom calls, three loads of laundry, two or three errands, recharged the hummingbird feeders, and now the day is about over. There is a possibility of rain overnight, but there is a much better possibility tomorrow night. It is still crazy windy, but that will just have to be, there's nothing that can be done about it. There are three estate sales for the morning, and I will be taking the girls in to the beautiful parlor before that. I had a scone for breakfast this morning (raspberry, I highly recommend them), and potato chips for dinner so far. I may have an orange, who knows. I will go rummage around to see what there is.
Posted by Billiam at 6:38 PM No comments:
Thursday, May 19, 2022
Volume 14 - Day 139/226, 2022 - Thursday
This is the most current trivia I could find about early voting. According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, 37 states offer voters some way to avoid lining up at the polls on Election Day. About one-third of voters (voters, not registered voters) make use of alternative ways to vote. "Convenience voting" is controversial, and the controversy almost always revolves around some type of partisan crap, one side or the other. On my way home this afternoon, I took advantage of early voting. There were about five campaign signs outside the ballot place, the 'vote here' sign was folded up inside the polling place, and there were more people working the place than there were voters, by a margin of about 12 to 1. BUT...I voted. It was a good day today, a nice walk in the morning, in to the office about 10:30, left for home about 2. I ran some errands on the way in, and some more on the way home. I will be going to Costco over the weekend, and it is also supposed to rain over the weekend and into next week. The chances of rain are pretty good, and that is lovely. I spent about an hour watering plants this afternoon, and I like doing that. I think the plants need watering at least every other day. After watering, I sat in the front for a while, and then I sat on the back deck for a while. I may have to dive in to the key lime pie after I wrap up this journal entry. Or maybe not. What do you think?
Posted by Billiam at 8:20 PM No comments:
Wednesday, May 18, 2022
Volume 14 - Day 138/227, 2022 - Wednesday
Why are 'lobbyists' called lobbyists? Ulysses S Grant might have contributed that word. It is said that he used to get away from the White House and visit the Willard Hotel where he would smoke cigars and drink whisky. People seeking jobs, contracts and particular positions in legislation would approach him in the hotel lobby, and he referred to them as lobbyists. I did not get in my walk this morning, since I attended the WILCO Advocacy Day. There were speakers from a variety of sources, and it was an informative and worthwhile meeting. Thanks for the invite! I did get a chance to go to the Appraisal District, and all the questions I had about exemptions were answered, so I am good on that front. Now I can just wait until the tax bills arrive later this year. Another record heat setting day today...every day this month has been at or above the record heat for this month. The record for today was held for over 100 years, but we broke it. Good news is that there may be some rain over the weekend, so that will be good. This photo is of me and Michelle, President of WILCO. We're both short, but there was no fun short person trivia I could come up with, so I went with Advocacy. Your loss!
Posted by Billiam at 6:34 PM No comments:
Tuesday, May 17, 2022
Volume 14 - Day 137/228, 2022 - Tuesday
Pee is the normal form of communication for dogs. They can gather a lot of information by sniffing another dog's pee. It's important that we not correct or scold the girls for sniffing pee, it's not like they are hooligans (well...) or criminals. My girls don't get a lot of information from each others pee, at least I assume they don't. If they were better on their leashes, they might get to know the neighbors, but so far, I have not had to patience to get them out on their leashes. A nice walk this morning, but I did not get to have oatmeal with the ROMEOs. I was doing a zoom class at 10 this morning, and another one at 1. I am zoomed out for one day. Tomorrow, I won't be able to do the walk, there is an Advocacy program at the Williamson County board that I will attend, starting at 8:30. Then, Thursday, there is nothing on my schedule, and a couple more zooms on Friday. It will all work out. This is a picture of the girls this morning, checking the mail in the back yard. The morning glories are doing nicely as well, four blooms this morning.
Posted by Billiam at 7:14 PM No comments:
Monday, May 16, 2022
Volume 14 - Day 136/229, 2022 - Monday
During the 1950s, patios and decks rapidly gained popularity in the United States. So did barbecue grills and weather resistant furniture. Metal and plastic chairs became popular, making outdoor furniture easier to maintain. How many different ways do you know how to spell 'barbecue' or something spelled differently that means the same thing? Today started out like most days, with a nice walk with Jay and Dick. Off to the office, and got my desk cleared off before I came home. On the way home, I made a few stops; I needed milk and a gift and a card for Marge's birthday. Dinner was a stuffed bell pepper that I got at Trader Joe's last week, and the last of the meatloaf. It is hot a hell outside, and we are experiencing the hottest May EVER, and no relief in sight. There is a 20% chance of rain Friday and Saturday. That is code for 'it's not going to rain.' After dinner, I went outside with the girls and sat on the patio for a while. It is hot, but there is shade on the patio, and later in the evenings, when the sun is going down, it is really quite comfortable. I am glad I had the deck put in last year, and the front patio this year. It is much easier to harass the passersby that way! Tomorrow I am attending two virtual classes, which is code for 'sitting on my ass for five hours.' It could be worse.
Posted by Billiam at 6:50 PM No comments:
Sunday, May 15, 2022
Volume 14 - Day 135/230, 2022 - Sunday
There is only one rule for kids painting rocks, and that rule is, there are no rules. All around the neighborhood I see painted rocks that kids paint and put here and there. This one was spied in the pocket park during our morning walk. I like it a lot, and I really like the message, too. Follow the waves. After the walk, I did a few things around the house, and then Deb and Diane came over, and we went back to one of the estate sales I went to yesterday. We all got a few more treasures, at half-price. When we got back home, I headed off to brunch, and then back home for a nap. I had shredded wheat for dinner tonight, and I took care to open the box with the earliest expirations date. You don't need to know anything else about expiration dates. After I finish this journal entry, I will go outside and water stuff in the front of the house. It's hot, but the sun is going down, so it's not crazy hot. I like watering, it's just me and the hose.
Posted by Billiam at 7:26 PM No comments:
Saturday, May 14, 2022
Volume 14 - Day 134/231, 2022 - Saturday
The morning flory can be symbolic of strength, giving a person the power to realize their hopes and dreams, These flowers are resilient, and they pass this power on to their recipient. It is believed that the ability to grow through adversity resonates through the flower. So far, so good on the morning glory front. At the farm, the chickens thought morning glory shoots were about the best thing ever, but so far, they are doing really well at the Curious House. I expect you will get tired of morning glory posts very soon, but too bad. It is my journal. Tomorrow, I will be planting more morning glory seeds, AND some night shades, so there will be more morning glory and night shade trivia to come. Marge and I went to four estate sales today, and we all came away with treasures, as if I need more treasures. Diane, Deb, and maybe Linda and I are going back to one close to the Curious House tomorrow morning, and then I will be heading off to brunch with Terry, Candy and Alisha. I am a lucky man. Tonight, we set a world's record for attendance at Wine Night. there were ten of us there, and we laughed really hard throughout the night. Nine o'clock, and it is time to go. We have nothing if not structure!
Friday, May 13, 2022
Volume 14 - Day 133/232, 2022 - Friday
For a month to have a Friday the 13th, the month must begin on a Sunday. Go ahead, check it out. There is little evidence to show that Friday the 13th is an unlucky day. Studies show that Friday the 13th has little or no effect on things like accidents, hospital visits, or natural disasters. AND...an asteroid will fly by earth on April 13, 2029. Scientists have proclaimed that there is absolutely NO RISK of the asteroid colliding with the earth or the moon. Today had its' good points and bad points, but the good points won out. Nothing terrible really happened today, just a couple first world problems. I remain a lucky guy. You're welcome. The morning walk was cooler than the last few days, and that was great, and we did not get too terribly hot all day. They are expecting higher temperatures over the weekend, and already electric generating plants are failing. I refuse to be intimidated, that is why I have solar. I am making electricity for all y'all. I may reconsider, just give me a couple months. Tomorrow is going to be a little bit busy; the girls are going to the beautiful parlor, there are some estate sales in the plan, a few chores around the house, and then going to meet Paulina, Val and Oliver tomorrow afternoon for a shake and howdy.
Posted by Billiam at 6:57 PM No comments:
Thursday, May 12, 2022
Volume 14 - Day 132/233, 2022 - Thursday
Most morning glory flowers unravel into full bloom early in the morning. They're MORNING glories! The flowers usually start to fade a few hours before the 'petals' start showing visible curling. Some morning glories are night-blooming flowers. I was totally surprised this afternoon when I spotted the first morning glory bloom of the season. I had been out in the back yard with the girls and didn't pay attention, and I spied the bloom from inside the house. I waited too long to take the photo that graces this journal entry, but it was BEE-YOU-TIFF-UL. Take my word for it. A nice walk this morning, then in to the office...then we had a luncheon for Tosalyn celebrating her 6th anniversary with our little company. Then home, and then in to Taylor with Dick, Marge, Deb and Jay for catfish at Lucky Duck's. And a good time was had by all.
Posted by Billiam at 8:14 PM No comments:
Wednesday, May 11, 2022
Volume 14 - Day131/234, 2022 - Wednesday
A forensic crime scene unit consists of crime scene investigators who document an active crime or accident scene and collect, classify and identify evidence that is later analyzed in a lab. My neighborhood, a generally quiet, tasteful little place, has a moment. When I came home this afternoon, the native drums were beating furiously about the crime scene people two streets over. Of course, I had to see for myself, so off I went. Yep, there they were. Lots of police cars, lots of miscreants hanging around the crime scene, one very large senior citizen dressed only in boxers (no shirt), with ample man-boobs, taking exception to my passing by well below the speed limit. He really got twisted on my second pass, and a few of the delinquents expressed their displeasure with the single finger salute, while I mouthed obscenities at the lack of compassion for my outright show of concern. Whatever. A nice walk this morning, I got in to the office a little bit early, and then Tosalyn and I went and walked a couple properties. We got back to the office, and then our friend Kay (from Houston) stopped at the office and Carrie, Kay and I went next door for lunch at El Mercado. A little more office stuff, and then I got home in time to document the Crime Scene peeps for posterity. Not a bad day.
Posted by Billiam at 7:29 PM No comments:
Tuesday, May 10, 2022
Volume 14 - Day 130/235, 2022 - Tuesday
OMG! The oil of the Prickly Pear Cactus helps reduce dark circles and prevent wrinkly formation, However, it also finds usages as a natural hair conditioner, as it is rich in Vitamin E and fatty acids. A couple days ago, I saw a prickly pear on our morning walk, and noticed it was about to bloom. I miss the cactus on the farm, and I always looked forward to the blooms. I hope you enjoy this photo. After the walk, the ROMEOs went for breakfast, and just kept talking. I think it is really interesting that we walk seven days a week, have breakfast on Tuesdays, wine on Saturdays, and every now and then have dinner together, and we NEVER run out of things to talk about. There are lots of years of experiences between us, and it is just fun to keep talking. I made it to the office, and all was good. I got home this afternoon, watched the news and then went outside to water plants. I timed myself in the plant watering (front and back), and it takes just about an hour. I think on an every-other-day basis, I will only need to water the potted plants, and the bedded plants only on an as-needed basis. The morning was cloudy, the afternoon sunny, hot like Hell, and no rain in sight.
Posted by Billiam at 8:26 PM No comments:
Monday, May 9, 2022
Volume 14 - Day 129/236, 2022 - Monday
The word 'squirrel' originates from the Greek words for shade and tail. Adult squirrels can consume about a pound and a half of seeds and nuts each week, which is about the equivalent of their body weight. As I was driving in to the office this morning, I thought about how nice it was to be back in Austin and back to my routines. I like routines. I like structure. So, life is good. The day started with some plant watering, a walk, and then more plant watering. For having been out of the office for a week, there was not a lot of paperwork stacked up on my desk, so I got it cleared off pretty quickly, and there were no real fires that needed to be put out, so that was a good thing. It is hot like the hinges of hell here in central Texas. This morning, it was 75 degrees when we started our walk. It is looking like it will be a long, hot summer, and we should all start complaining about the heat and lack of rain just any minute. This is a photo of a squirrel that is avoiding detection by the girls this morning.
Posted by Billiam at 7:47 PM No comments:
Sunday, May 8, 2022
Volume 14 - Day 128/238, 2022 - Sunday
WD-40 was first used to protect the outer skin of the Atlas Missile from rust and corrosion. WD stands for Water Displacement. I thought I had read some earlier information about the product, but I don't remember it having anything to do with missiles OR water displacement. I thought it was something about Navy ships. Happy Mother's Day to all of you celebrating today. I went to an Estate Sale this afternoon, and I bought half a can of WD-40 and a paint scraper for $1. On the way back, I stopped at HEB (again) and got more dog food. There are swallows thinking about nesting on the front porch, so I installed some swirly shiny things and two fake owls out there trying to dissuade them. I'll let you know how it works out. Back to the office tomorrow after a week away, I will be happy to get back.
Posted by Billiam at 7:22 PM No comments:
Saturday, May 7, 2022
Volume 14 - Day 127/238, 2022 - Saturday
The United States Capitol Building has a staircase of 365 steps from the basement to the top of its outer dome, to represent every day of the year. A lot of the things I do in my life are repetitive. Ass photos, ass grabbing photos (maybe tomorrow), and just mundane things that I am forced to do because of my CDO. I do not particularly expound about all the things I do (I have to use three, not two, not four) paper towels when I visit a public restroom. But some things I do. Take the photo in this journal entry. The sign says 'Internal Relocation Site,' and what that means in English is 'Stairwell.' I just think that is odd, and every time I visit a government building in the nations Capital, I make note of it. Today was a pretty quiet day. I got up and joined the boys for our walk, then I came home and took a nap. After that, I went to CVS, went to HEB, and went to pick up the girls from the kennel. I think they were glad to see me, but you can never be sure. Then I went down for more naps. Tonight was wine night, and there were nine of us there. We had a fun time, and now it is time for me to call it a night. I have a few things on my list for tomorrow, but there should be a few naps in the mix as well.
Posted by Billiam at 9:45 PM No comments:
Friday, May 6, 2022
Volume 14 - Day 126/239, 2022 - Friday
A while back, a lady from Windermere, Florida tweeted "My flight to Washington, DC has been delayed for almost two and a half hours and I was getting HEATED until this gate agent started playing games with everyone waiting to pass the time and now I', like I'll wait all damn night if you keep this up." Well, I would not want to wait all night, but I was not surprised that my flight back to Austin was delayed. I was a little bit surprised that I got two simultaneous texts (see photo) about the delay...but apparently it was not as bad as it could have been. Honestly, I have no complaints...ultimately, we were delayed about an hour, but I am home now, and I am just a lucky putz, so everybody else needs to just get over it. this years legislative conference is over, it was good, learned a lot, got to see LOTS of friends from across the country (8,000 attendees), and tonight I get to sleep in my own bed. This will be the first time I have slept in the home bed without two dogs. I hope I will be able to fall asleep. I'll let you know.
Posted by Billiam at 11:13 PM No comments:
Thursday, May 5, 2022
Volue 14 - Day 145/240, 2022 - Thursday
The first Justice to be fully vested as a member of the Supreme Court was James Wilson, who took his oath on October 5, 1789. Outside the Supreme Court was very quiet this morning, we got there at about 11 in the morning. We hung around a while, we were asked by an AP camera man if we wanted to be on the news, but we deferred. There were less than a dozen people that we thought were 'possible' protesters, but we aren't for sure. We tried our best to witness history, but alas, it was not meant to be. Then, we headed to the NAR Building, then to lunch, then to a little shopping, then back to the hotel for naps. We had a Regional Caucus at 4 in the afternoon, and then off to dinner somewhere else. It is odd that we have been in the District of Columbia and two different states this week, and we never really knew where we were at any given time. My last meeting is tomorrow (Board of Directors) is tomorrow at 8:30 in the morning. I should be happily home tomorrow evening about 10PM. This photo is Ben, Nancy, Melinda and Me. Enjoy!
Posted by Billiam at 10:38 PM No comments:
Wednesday, May 4, 2022
Volume 14 - Day 124/241, 2022 - Wednesday
On October 12, 2004, the National Association of REALTORS® moved in to its new, state of the art, environmentally conscious Washington, D.C. headquarters. The structure is a 12-story, Class A facility, at 500 New Jersey Avenue NW, just three blocks from the U.S. Capitol. I started the day at 7:30. I am a member of the Public Policy Coordinating Committee, and we had a good, interesting, learning meeting. We were supposed to be done in a couple hours, but we went long. After the meeting, Nancy and I went to breakfast, then did a little touristy shopping, and then back to the hotel. At 12:45, we headed to the Rayburn Building to meet with the staff of one of our elected officials. We knew the Congressman was not in town, but we have met with him and his staff for so many years, both here and in Austin, that we all know each other pretty well. After that meeting, a few of us went to the NAR Building and went up to the roof. This is Teresa, Becky, me and Holly up on the roof, with the Capitol in the background. I have an 8 o'clock meeting in the morning, and a four o'clock meeting in the afternoon. In between times, I am going to see the protestors at the Supreme Court. So far, it has been reported that the protestors (on both sides of the issue) have been well behaved. I feel I MUST go, I have no real intentions of participating, but I cannot justify being here and not going to witness this. I think it will be like a civics class, and I think we all need more civics education. Wish me luck.
Tuesday, May 3, 2022
Volume 14 - Day 123/242, 2022 - Tuesday
The Capital Wheel rises 180 feet above the Potomac River and has a 171 feet 2 9/16 inch diameter. It holds 336 passengers in 42 climate controlled gondolas with each gondola holding 8 people. It weighs 320 tons without the base. It was a busy and long day today, beginning with the General Session this morning. Anna Palmer and Jake Sherman (bloggers and pod casters) were really interesting. It will be fun to see how their forecasts play out. The Trade Expo began at 10, I attended the RPAC Major Investor Council as an observer, and the day finished with an RPAC event and dinner. Then on to the Ferris Wheel. I have actually been on this same wheel several years ago, and not much about it has changed. I have a 7:30 Council meeting tomorrow morning, then visits to the Hill tomorrow afternoon. A couple more meetings on Thursday, and the Board of Directors meeting on Friday. Good stuff. This is me and Tobetha on the Ferris Wheel, and Ben is in there with us somewhere!
Posted by Billiam at 10:05 PM No comments:
Monday, May 2, 2022
Volume 14 - Day 122/243, 2022 - Monday
How many monuments and memorials are there is Washington, DC? Well, that's an open question, because your definition of a 'memorial' might be different than mine. News reports are that there are at least 160 memorials, including ones dedicated to Sonny Bono, and victims of the Titanic. I think we were at the Capitol last night when I turned around and saw this sunset. As a fan of clouds and sunsets, I thought you might enjoy this visual, too. The day of meetings and forums started at 8 o'clock this morning (EST), and it was good to see so many people that we have not seen in two or three years. Tomorrow will be another packed day, but it will go on through early evening. I pretty much called it an early night, and did what I usually do on a Monday night, a lot of nothing. Tomorrow will be different!
Posted by Billiam at 8:25 PM No comments:
Sunday, May 1, 2022
Volume 14 - Day 121/244, 2022 - Sunday
The Washington Monument is an engineering marvel. The Monument's marble blocks are held together by just gravity and friction, and no mortar was used in the process. Well, it has been a little bit of a long day. Up early to get some chores done, and then took the girls to the kennel, then headed to the airport for a flight to DC. We are back! This particular conference has had many names over the years, but I will always think of it as Mid-Year. Hill Visits. Where colleagues from all across the country gather to advocate to our elected officials for property owner rights and REALTOR® issues. It will be a week full of meetings, and visits, and it will be great to get back in to the swing of it. It is what we do, It's Who We R!
Posted by Billiam at 9:33 PM No comments:
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