Friday, November 28, 2008

our shining beacon

Let's play a game, shall we? Who can find Dave in this photo? (Hint - he's camoflauged against the natural flora) Yeah, he was our shining beacon. No one was going to get lost. We could all see him. Everyone on the mountain could see him.
It's fun having Brady home for the weekend. Dave and I are loving having everyone together.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

hallucinations on a sunday afternoon

I made some bread this afternoon. I took a turn making some refreshments for our church choir practice. I had the bread timed so it would go into the oven as Dave and I left for practice. The mess was cleaned up, the dishes were all done and put away. Then Rachel and Melanie were going to take it out of the oven and deliver it to the church piping hot with some butter and honey when practice was over.
So . . . Roxanne fell asleep all afternoon. She said as she was waking up she could smell fresh bread. She could almost taste it. She was excited to wake up. She got up and the house was empty. "I'm ok with no people in the house, but there was NO BREAD! I looked everywhere for it. How can there be smells of hot fresh baked bread and there are no loaves of bread anywhere?"
Sorry, Roxanne. You snooze, you lose.

Friday, November 21, 2008

random thoughts

Random thoughts running through my head:
#1 Last night's "Survivor" episode was a classic! The meanest, crabbiest contestant ever got voted out in the trickiest blind-sided vote. Usually the show is edited so the audience doesn't really know how the vote will play out. But this was a hilarious twist of events and the producers just let it play out like it happened. Laugh-out-loud funny.
#2 Roxanne and Rachel went to the midnight showing of "Twilight". (who didn't?) Roxanne could go on the condition that she still make it to seminary at 6:15 am. I think she got less than 3 hours of sleep. As it turns out, she got up and left on time this morning, nearly fell asleep on the 10 minute drive, and stayed in her car and slept in the parking lot at the church. Oh well, nice try.
#3 Seminary students can be bribed to read their scriptures. We had a big hot breakfast reward day this morning. Waffles with a million toppings, hot chocolate, milk, juice and fresh fruit. Is bribery appropriate? I don't know. But waffles or not, it comes down to the fact that teenagers are reading the New Testament.
#4 As I started my hike this morning, I had to walk through a picnic area to get to the trail head. As I walked by an older couple sitting at the picnic table, I startled about 100 birds. Yikes. I'll tell you what, they weren't the only ones that were startled. I was not expecting that. These people were feeding the birds. I was a little worried to have to come back to the car later in the morning. It looked like they had about 7 loaves of bread and a 3 gallon bucket of bird seed. It was all a little too Alfred Hitchcock horror movie to me.
#5 The hiking trails guide map should have a little bit more information on it. I got on a trail up and over North Mountain this morning. I realized that although the trail was rated "moderate to difficult", it should have been rated "WAY difficult with a teeny bit of moderate thrown in for fun". I felt like a shaky mountain goat on a precipice. I made it to the top but wasn't exactly sure how (or if) I would get down. Luckily, I found this on the other side of the mountain:
Thank the heavens above. A paved maintenance road. I got down off that mountain in about 2 seconds.
#6 There is a cute little family of squirrels that live in the rocks at the lookout point at the top of the mountain. Aw, how cute . . . until I suddenly saw about 19 of them and they were all over the place and they weren't afraid of people and they kept coming within about 2 feet of my shoes. EWWWW - Rodents - creepy.
#7 Sometimes this scenery, living in the desert, is pretty to me. Sometimes it is not. Today? It is absolutely breathtaking.

#8 Roxanne falls asleep very often after school. I certainly knew she would today because of the midnight movie. For some unknown reason, she always sleeps sideways in the recliner instead of on the couch, on her bed or even stretched out on the floor. Ok, she's tiny, but sleeping bent up in a ball just doesn't look comfortable.
#9 We are going to start window painting next week. I am dreading it a little bit. I always do. But once we get started and get back in the groove, it's enjoyable. Maybe there will be good stories to tell. Well, there are always good stories to be told when you hang out with Shannon for any amount of time. (Just most of it can't be retold.)
#10 Life is good today. The end.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

getting some fresh air

I've been out hiking the last few weeks. I thought I'd carry a camera with me one day to see what I could see. Although there are great views in every direction, I find I mostly just keep my eye on the trail. Well, that is probably not an accurate photo of what I am seeing. Mostly it is just this: The trail is so very rocky, I have to carefully watch my step. I have a slight fear of stumbling and busting my kneecap in two or cracking my tail bone. I don't need the population of the whole valley "tsk-tsk"-ing me as I am being air evac-ed off the mountain on the 5 o'clock news. So I just watch my every step. But once in a while I stop and look up and enjoy the views.Ok, I'm not a great photographer, but that is downtown Phoenix amidst all the smog. And even with the smog, it is a very pretty view in real life.
I don't know why I haven't used these trails and enjoyed these mountains very much over the years. I live right by them. I could conceivably walk to the Phoenix Mountain Preserves from my house. (But if I walked there, by the time I arrived I would be done with my walk so what would be the point of that?) Anyway, here is the view from my front yard over the neighbor's roof. And I drive right past them every single day of my life carpooling the kids around.
I hiked up Shaw Butte the other day. I found some curious things on my walk. This:
I couldn't figure out what a manhole was doing on a dirt trail on the side of a desert mountain. As it turns out, there are radio towers and some utility buildings on the top of this particular mountain. So I suppose there are things that need to be wired, plumbed, drained and flushed up there. Another curious thing I ran across:
What the heck? Hiking a strenuous summit trail and smoking along the way? I don't get it.
Also - evidence of another unhealthy hiker. A bag of Cheetos. Not only was this empty bag thrown aside, but there was a trail of Cheetos for a significant section of the hill. Was there an issue of leaving a trail of crumbs to find their way back? I found it helpful to just follow the trail markers, but I guess everyone has their own system. Maybe it was just a clumsy Cheeto Eater.
Cindi and I are hiking a 4 mile summit trail tomorrow morning. (There are no bathrooms around for miles, so we are planning on some speedy hiking. Wish us luck.)

Saturday, November 8, 2008

check it out !!

Click on this LINK . Go ahead, I'll wait. Pretty cool, huh? Celia is my friend. Who I have never met. And I don't know where she lives. And I've never spoken to her in real life. But I read about her every day. ( Is that wierd? I hope not. You do it too . . . don't you? ) I think Celia is the kind of person who would be fun to have as a neighbor. Look at that list of "my people" on her side bar. Yeah, she's definitely in the "IN" crowd.
Here is my confession. I follow a lot of blogs. On my google reader, I have 27 people I actually know or are related to. Then I have 17 perfect strangers that I read regularly. I don't comment very often so maybe that is kind of stalkerish. But it is what it is. I found them through a friend of a friend of a friend. Or I read a funny comment on someone's blog and then clicked onto the commenter's blog. Either way, I couldn't retrace my steps or remember how I got there. Nevertheless, they are very entertaining. So if you want some fun reading, here are a few of my favorite blogs:
celia fae
big mama
country girl
is it just me
navel gazing
rabbit in the headlights
take 90 west
the gab blog
these are a few of my favorite things
Know why I like reading other people's blogs? There are interesting things going on in other people's lives and interesting thoughts going on in their heads. There is not much of interest going on in my head today:
I need to paint the stairs.
I am tired of painting.
I don't know how to paint stairs when someone lives at the top of them and need to use them regularly.
I am going to paint every other step and hope Rachel can negotiate the staircase like that.
But then, on Monday when I paint the other every other step, how will she know which step is wet and which step is dry?
I need to make a dessert for the Boy Scouts fundraiser and dessert auction tonight.
I don't want to go to a Boy Scout event tonight.
This episode of "Grounded for Life" on TV right now is pretty funny.
See? there is not much thought process in my head that is of interest. And I thoroughly evaluated my thoughts for about 30 seconds. Nothing about politics. Nothing about inter-personal relationships. Nothing about childrearing. Nothing about bettering our world. Nothing about world peace.
So I am just going to enjoy other people's commentary about human relationships and politics because I've got to go paint the stairs.
Thanks Celia!

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

election day

It’s not only Election Day, it’s also
Jeff Probst’s birthday!
So later today, the biggest tribe of all
will have spoken!