Wednesday, May 31, 2006
Even in just a few days, after being around him constantly, it feels strange not wondering where he is at any given moment. When we leave here to head for warmer weather in the fall, I can already tell that we will have great difficulty saying goodbye and then there will be two grandchildren.
I predict plenty of tears in the forecast!
Tuesday, May 30, 2006
Okay, so it's like this: I bought this new camera and I am trying to figure it out without reading the directions. So needless to say, it is hit and miss. If they become too bad, I'll concede to the manual but for now....
....Please bear with me, indulge my stubborness and forgive me for inflicting my foolishness on you!
Monday, May 29, 2006
Yesterday, we caught a huge grey squirrel clinging onto it feasting like there was no tomorrow!
Today, we caught this little black squirrel doing the same thing. At least now we know where the bird(?) seeds are going.
Sunday, May 28, 2006
As you can see from this picture there is a nice backyard to explore nature in and I will be sure to enjoy it.
It is certainly is a nice place to spend the summer in!
Saturday, May 27, 2006
Here he is practicing his technique of feeding his baby! He is a little preoccupied by the TV but at least he has the bottle in the right place!
Friday, May 26, 2006
Today we are heading north to Mission, BC from Eugene, Oregon and it is roughly an eight hour drive. We want to get on the road by 6:00 AM so we can be there in time to play with our grandson before he goes to bed, so I set the alarm for 5:00.
Needless to say, my internal alarm had a different idea and I have been lying in bed, wide awake since 3:00. I tried for an hour to go back to sleep and now I am sitting here waiting for the external alarm to wake my sleeping husband so we can hit the road. I guess I am more excited than I thought!
Thursday, May 25, 2006
Today would have been my late husband's, Jim, 52nd birthday. I would be lying if I said I don't think of him. We met when I was 16 and he was 17, we started living together two years later. When he died, we'd been together 20 years and married 15. I was 38 and he, 39.
He wasn't perfect. What human is? He was my friend, my teacher, my husband and the father of our three children. He was also loyal to his friends (Rick, my husband now was one of them), he worked hard, he was focused, he played harder, he mastered anything he tried from sports to playing the guitar and he loved me and our children.
Certain dates (like today) bring him to the forefront of my mind. I wonder what he would look like now, what colour would his hair be, how much would be left on his head (he was already going bald when he died), what would our lives be like...stuff like that.
I thank him for Rick (it was his persitance that created their lasting friendship) and I feel like he brought us together. And sometimes I miss him, his enthusiasm, his sense of humour and his zest for life.
Thanks Jim, for being.
Wednesday, May 24, 2006
Tuesday, May 23, 2006
It is raining here in Eugene, Oregon and so today we have been hanging around indoors, watching TV and surfing the net. Finally, the rain stopped so we thought we would go and explore a nearby recreation area. Just as we drove out of the campground the skies opened up and started dumping rain on us again.
That seems to indicate that our timing is off or we aren't meant to go anywhere for now, so back to the motorhome we went. I guess sometimes we are just supposed to stay home!
Monday, May 22, 2006
Had the rain not been falling and had we had the foresight to bring our raincoats, we might have joined these beach walkers. Instead, we could only watch them from a distance.
Lesson learned...never go to the coast without weatherproof jackets if you want to get up close and personal with the sea!
Sunday, May 21, 2006
We stopped at the Alsea Falls Recreation Area in the thick of the Siuslaw National Forest. We were surrounded by tall, moss covered trees and some were quite majestic. The roads were great, the scenery spectacular and it was better than sitting around in the motorhome all day!
Saturday, May 20, 2006
I love it when the weather forecasters are wrong, especially when they predict rain and we get sun instead.
Here in Eugene, Oregon we were expecting it to have rain for most of the day and instead we saw nothing but sunshine. The temperature was great too, 24C (75F), so we enjoyed the entire day.
Now, with any luck the forecast for the next few days will be wrong as well!
Friday, May 19, 2006
What do the following things have in common: Anchovy-stuffed olives, cream of mushroom soup, a hot shower, an ice-pack, a bucket and a guillotine?
As a sufferer of migraine headaches, and being in the midst of one yesterday, I was in serious pain at around 1:30 AM this morning. All of those things went through my agonized brain as a craving or a solution at some point while I was in the heart of my angst. It seems I crave salt (hence the olives), one minute my throbbing head wanted to be cold then hot (ice vs. hot shower), I went between hunger (soup) and wanting to throw up (bucket) and the guillotine was beginning to look like the only solution.
Finally, after several hours of pacing in pain, I was able to fall asleep with a bag of ice on the side of my head. This morning the migraine had subsided to a regular headache and I am happy to say, I didn't resort to the use of the guillotine.
Thursday, May 18, 2006
Several months later, I found myself at the house from my dream, with folks I had just met and I was offered a cup of coffee. Because I remembered the dream, I tried it and sure enough I loved it. The very next day, I went out and bought a coffee maker, a grinder, beans, cream and raw sugar. That is how I began my relationship with our traditional morning beverage.
I only have one cup a day and I waiver between drinking it or not drinking it. I don't know what exactly keeps me hooked because sometimes I don't even like the taste (it's not the caffeine because we drink half-decaf, half-caf). My problem is that when I catch the aroma of fresh ground beans, it stirs my desire to drink it again. This morning I just didn't like the taste so it looks like I may be coming into a non-drinking phase again. So coffee...bye, bye for now!
Wednesday, May 17, 2006
Today we took Interstate-5 from Redding, California to Eugene, Oregon and the weather was perfect to enjoy the drive.
With the exception of a recurring mechanical problem (which has been finally resolved) we had a very enjoyable day!
Tuesday, May 16, 2006
Sambucca, our 10 year old cat, is becoming more and more like a baby with each passing year. She misses us like my mad when we go away for a few hours and greets us with loud, resounding meows at the door when we return.
She is never happier than in the mornings when she can "hang" around us while we go through our breakfast routine.....
.....and we couldn't love her more.
Monday, May 15, 2006
On our latest roadtrips in the area of Redding, we have seen plenty of areas recently (and not so recently) destroyed by forest fires.
It is then that I begin to wonder if the trees had been responsibly logged, would it have been better than having them disappear in a cloud of smoke?
Sunday, May 14, 2006
As a child, even though my mother is no longer with me in body, I value her lifelong commitment and honour her spirit.
Motherhood is something we share with all cultures and all living, breathing beings on earth. It is a sacred role that we should be proud of and should recognize for it's importance. Without mothers, WE wouldn't be!!
Happy Mother's Day to all moms, whoever and wherever you are!
Saturday, May 13, 2006
They were grazing in fields, resting in the shade of trees and standing on the sides of the roadways.
This fellow just posed for us before darting into the forest. For more pictures check out our webpage, http://www.coulsoncastle.ca.
Friday, May 12, 2006
We are enjoying very warm weather right now and the heat of the sun is taking it's toll on the snow. We found small waterfalls like these all along our route which was beautiful!
Thursday, May 11, 2006
Today we rode our motorcycle up to The Lassen Volcanic National Park in northern California. The ride was beautiful and the deeper we went into the Lassen National Forest, the stronger the aroma of cedar was.
The sky was blue, the temperatures ranged between 33C (91.4F) to 22C (71.6F), depending at what altitude we were at and I was in heaven!!
Wednesday, May 10, 2006
Currently we are in Redding, in northern California and this morning we ventured over to the Shasta Lake Dam, a few miles from the campground we are staying in.
The whole area is beautiful (check out the pictures on our website, www.coulsoncastle.ca) but we avoided this area beside the dam for obvious reasons.
Though we never saw any, the sign was a good enough deterrent.
Tuesday, May 09, 2006
For the first time in six months, we are on a long road trip again. Today we arrived at the "rustic" Bear Lake RV park in Redding, California, where we will stay for the next week.
Though it could use some TLC, the park is quaint, in a great location, several miles east of the main highway and it will certainly be peaceful.
It's nice to be surrounded by greenery again; no dust, no wind and lots of trees. It is 28C (82.4F) and sunny with a pleasant breeze blowing. For the first time in months I can have the windows open with no fear of blowing sand to coat every surface! We are definitely liking it!
Monday, May 08, 2006
First, LA and its surrounding "burbs" were covered in a thick blanket of smog/fog this morning which impeded any chance of a clear picture.
Then this afternoon, I looked up in time to see something hugh coming right for the centre of my side of the windshield. Lo and behold, this is all that remains of the massive insect....can't quite makeout what species it is though!
Sunday, May 07, 2006
Okay, I am coming clean here…I am hooked.
When I was expecting my firstborn, 30+ years ago, I was a soap opera addict, watching one American soap after another from 11:30 till 4:00pm daily. Fortunately, by the time baby #2 came along 18 months later, I had no time to watch them anymore and my addiction ceased. What I hate about American soap operas is that all the characters are perfectly groomed, they never age, they morph into princesses and aliens and they get married dozens of times. But in those days I overlooked all of that and escaped into the fantasies, as ridiculous as they were.
In the past year, I have become hooked on Coronation Street, the British soap opera that has been on the air forever. Though just as much a make-believe world as its American counterparts, at least the characters age, are loaded with imperfections and remain human (besides I luuuuv the accents!). With our satellite receiver, we get Canadian programming and CS starts as early as 4:00 AM PST on Sunday mornings. (The CBC plays back all five of the episodes which air daily in the evening over 2 1/2 hours on Sunday mornings.) With our PVR, I can record an entire week’s worth of shows while I am sleeping and play them back, zipping through the annoying commercials, later at my leisure.
So there you have it, my sordid confession and besides, it doesn’t change who I am and it makes me feel closer to all my British and Scottish relatives!
Saturday, May 06, 2006
As an adult, my favourite books range from cookbooks to biographies and humour to mystery. As a teen I was an avid Stephen King fan and then I moved in to true crime authors like Ann Rule. Fortunately, as I have aged I have veered away from guts and gore and prefer history, self-help, well written novels and new age books.
There was a time in my life that I couldn't fall asleep without reading for at least 30 minutes a night and often I would still be reading for three hours or more (if the book was particularly riveting). No thanks to my vision changes from the process of aging, those three hour nighttime read-a-thons are in my past but I can still put a dent in a book in the daytime. Actually, it is for exactly that reason that I am writing this so late in the day, my nose was buried in a book, Memoirs of a Geisha, a great novel which I must get back to....
Friday, May 05, 2006
I LOVE wearing the colour yellow, not too bright, kind of "daffodilish" yellow, but yellow just the same. (I wonder what that says about me in psycho-babble?) Consequently, I own several items of yellow clothing, the most common being T-shirts.
For whatever reason, it is becoming quite apparent to me that I should give up on wearing PLAIN yellow T-shirts because I keep staining them. Just a few weeks ago, I bought a new one, (to replace the last stained yellow one which replaced the stained yellow one before it). I was excited because a) - it only cost $8, b) - I particularly liked the way it fit and c) - I loved the shade of yellow that it was. (keyword...was!)
I pulled it out yesterday (after only having worn it 3 times at the most and washing it after each wear) and discovered a large grayish stain right in the middle! (I don't recall spilling anything noxious on it!) After rewashing it (with some stain-releasing-miracle-wash) with no change, it is now soaking in another stain-releasing-miracle-soaking-stuff. Chances are there will still be a stain on it when it's done.
The crazy thing is that I have three other yellow ones, each with some writing across the front (you know, the souvenir kind) and they remain stain-free. I also have other T-shirts in white, beige, pink, blue, pale-green etc. that all remain stain-free as well, so it IS ONLY the yellow ones that turn against me. Hmmm, I wonder what THAT means???
Thursday, May 04, 2006
We buy mostly organic food and keep some grains stored in an already overcrowded kitchen cabinet. Today the cupboard was literally turned inside out, with the contents spread all over the counters. Though nothing flew out to greet us, we found a (plastic) container with organic, short-grained brown rice, looking suspiciously powdery.
My saintly husband quickly removed the contaminated container, along with several other members of the rice family in other assorted containers and disposed of them. The most offensive one came alive when he did that, so we think we have our pesky problem solved (at least for now). A motorhome just isn't big enough to share it with more than each other and the cat!
Wednesday, May 03, 2006
Through the course of the night, at some point we usually hear a pack of coyotes roaming through the nearby desert fields. Their yipping and howling lasts for just a few moments before we drop off to sleep again and we quite enjoy their "choir".
Every morning, before dawn, the birds start their morning songs and by the time we see the first hint of daylight, they are in full chorus. I wish I could say it was music to our ears, but there are so many and they are so loud, that we are always awakened by them. If it is still dark enough and there is the slightest chance that we can return to slumberland, the windows are quickly closed. Though it may sound like I am complaining, please know that I would sooner be disturbed from my sleep by songbirds, than by the sound of traffic going by or trains rumbling past, a more common downfall of RV parks.
Tuesday, May 02, 2006
Anyway, if things continue in this direction, in less than a week we will be driving north at last.
I shouldn't complain as I know there are far worse places to have been parked for the winter than Desert Hot Springs. However, yesterday we saw a high of 100F (38C) and I am looking forward to ocean breezes rather than dusty, polluted LA air being brought in by strong winds. Until then, my fingers will remain crossed!