Old Dogs, New Tricks

Bob and I went to Atlanta for a long weekend that turned out to be super fun and a great way to end the summer.

But it was a long day of travel and when we got home we were tired and trying to organize laundry and prioritize chores and responsibilities. I had to get prepared to go back to the office.

I found some rice in the fridge that had been there awhile and I tossed down the garbage disposal.

The garbage disposal decided that this was the day to die which we did not discover until we were finished with dinner and rushing to get things cleaned up so we could stagger off to bed. The main sink backed up, the auxiliary side backed up and for whatever reasons the sink in the laundry room is part of this series of tubes and it got backed up with gross stuff, too,.

If you have ever tried to problem solve with your partner when you are both tired and frustrated you can probably imagine how that all went. Plus, who doesn’t try to solve a problem using a bad idea? We won’t go into all that.

Anyway, we handled as best we could by ourselves before giving up and not the next day but the day after a plumbing team arrived to save the day.

Our disposal was from 2006 so no big surprise that had to be replaced. But the plumbing experts thought that the way our sink was set up underneath was problematic so they rearranged things so that now the LEFT is the disposal side and the right is rinse sink.

We have lived in this house over 20 years. The change makes better sense for our work flow and we trust the plumbers, but YIKES, it is hard to get used to. I am moving things back and forth over and over every time I’m in the kitchen. But it drains like a champ again.

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Patty Pan

I’ve never grown squash before mostly because I am afraid of harvesting 10 zucchini a day and having no place to put them and running out of ideas for what to do with them so then feeling guilty about composting or pretending I don’t see them and leaving them on the plant to turn into baseball bats.

A couple of weeks ago I was poking around my garden and I saw something that looked like a patty pan squash. I did not plant a patty pan squash and I couldn’t figure out where it came from. We don’t eat a lot of patty pan squash either.

But my friend Christopher gave me some seeds this season so went and checked and one of them was white scallop squash which for some reason when he gave them to me, I pictured as a sort of pale pumpkin.

Aha! White scallop squash. And it’s not giving me 10 a day. It only gave us 2 so far and there are 2 more out there. And they were DELICIOUS. I wish there were more.

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Something Besides Raccoons on a Bucket

I’ve been doing this for how long and I still can’t remember how many “c”s in raccoon and “p”s in opossum.

I saw evidence that there was activity around the shed again so I rigged the trail cam on a bucket so I could move it around easier and I set it up by the shed “door.” ALL THIS WAS FROM JUST LAST NIGHT. First, Raccy stopping by, sniffing around, and deciding this isn’t the place for him.

So, I have a ton of photos I intend to post here (hopelessly out of date at this point) and half-written posts in various apps on my phone and scribbled on tiny pieces of paper. I have a stack of print photos sitting here ready for the scanner.

But I am working on other projects and can’t seem to get it together here. Maybe for daily posting in November. (HAHA, sure.)

Then, Skunky returns! I had a clip of 2 of them earlier in the week but not close-ups. I haven’t seen them in the backyard much this summer. I did have a Bunny appearance one night but not a good enough clip to post. Look at that tail!!

Last, Opossum waddles along and also slips through to the shed burrow. I love thinking of them as roommates, exchaning stories about their nights and what sort of goodies they found to eat.

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Bye Uncle Barry

Look at these hot young kids. My mom and auntie! Too bad my dad’s looking a little stoned. I’m sure it was just bad timing.

What a life! Born in Boyd, Texas. Worked for federal highways and lived all over the country: D.C., Boise, Denver, Juneau, Olympia.

Huge family that loved him and that he loved.

He has been such a huge part of my life since I was a little kid. I can’t believe he’s not in the world anymore. 😢

I have a favorite print photo of me standing on Uncle B’s shoulders on a camping trip. If I can find it, I’ll scan and post at some future date.

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These are blown out tulips from spring. They’re still pretty even when they’re almost done.

Why is it so hard to get rid of stuff?

I’m not a pack rat and I love to get rid of things yet I can’t seem to declutter like I want to.

We did a little project cleaning out the linens that were stashed all over the house and when we were done it was like a half-drawer of stuff to get rid of.

And later we went through a few things in the garage and it was the same thing, like a grocery bag.

We did get rid of some ancient camping gear so a cubby hole in the basement that no one would ever look at is now almost empty.

I look around at my stuff and try to honestly evaluate whether I’m ever going to look at it or use it again and most of the time I’m convinced that I will.

Or else the thing was a gift and I feel bad getting rid of it.

Ugh, but also I feel smushed by having so much stuff. I’m going to keep chipping away at it.

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Radiology Awkward

I moved the bucket to the back of the yard. Look at these cuties brawling.

I had a test (regular medical thing, nothing to worry about) at the clinic and while I was in the waiting room I had to fill out a form on a clipboard.

Then while I was waiting I read a book on my phone that involves vampires, were-beings, zombies, and a human nurse who is dealing with some stuff.

When the technician arrived she held out her hand and I was so spaced out, I tried to shake it.

She pulls back so then I offer her my elbow. 😂 So then she offers me her elbow and I realize that DOH! I’m supposed to give her my form.

She takes me back to get into the gown and I somehow space out the entire instructions – couldn’t remember open in the front or the back. Left my underwear on.

I told her: I don’t know what’s wrong with me. I’m normally an A+ when it comes to following directions.

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Goose the Band

Look at these cute little guys, playing.

I have another more recent clip with 5 (5!) raccoons around the deck so the water bucket and camera have been moved out by the shed.

We celebrated our 26th wedding anniversary last week. We went to Tanaka — delicious Japanese comfort food. When I first saw the menu and items called “sandos” I rolled my eyes. HAHA. Joke’s on me. I have been there at least 4 times in the last month. Recommend!

Then we went to see Goose a hippie jam band kind of thing downtown.

As we left the restaurant there was a wave of tie-dyed people walking towards the show.

When we arrived there was a fairly long line to get in. Someone came over and told us there was another entrance on the other side with no line. My husband is a pokey walker and I was amazed how quickly he could move when it meant getting into our show faster.

“Now you can walk fast?” I called after him.

It was fun music and fun to see so many people downtown so happy to be out. There was a lady in a dress that had porcupines and amanita mushrooms on it. Whenever I’m shopping online I always look at the outdoor summer sporty dresses: Eddie Bauer, Athleta, Columbia, Prana — I saw every dress I’ve ever looked at on someone at that show.

My only complaint was that it was a little too crowded. I had a place to sit on the brick steps but my aged bum protested pretty quick. I wouldn’t have minded dancing but the crowd was really tight and it was hot and I wasn’t up for fighting my way into that. We left early. (But also I had worked all day.)

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Nothing Ever Goes As Planned

Someone has been breaking into my house and putting so, so, so many clips of raccoons on my computer. Also downloading too many photos and many of the same ones over and over as if they don’t understand how an iPhone works.

Last weekend the plan was to go to the Native American Art Market in Santa Fe, NM with my cousins for a girls weekend. My niece was a model in a fashion show and it was going to be a weekend of fun and getting away.

BUT, life intervened and there were some elders with health situations and everyone cancelled at the last minute and went to Orleans instead.

I am oversimplifying but this isn’t the place for the whole story.

This is the Klamath River at Tashawnik. There was a big fire upriver called the McKinney Fire that killed three people and vaporized a huge swathe of gorgeous scenery not to mention many homes. This is different than the Slater Fire from the 2020 fire season that killed two people and also vaporized a huge swathe of different gorgeous scenery and many homes in Karuk territory. I didn’t get to see the damage from that until June of this year.

I don’t know how to articulate what it’s like to see the damage from wildfires like that other than to say it’s hard not to cry and it’s really awful.

Back to the photo above, there was a huge rain storm and debris went into the river — I think below Happy Camp. The river looks like chocolate milk. Also a bunch of fish died.

Getting back to the Orleans trip, we had time with Mom and time with the health-impaired elders who are hanging in there like champs.

This is an elk track from Tashanik — a big one.

I got the news that the trip was cancelled while I was en route to the airport so I arrived in Orleans with my Santa Fe ‘let’s go out on the town clothes.’ I wore the same shorts (borrowed from my sister) for most of the trip. It was much hotter in Orleans than forecast for NM.

We worked around the place. Here is a giant bear pile kindly left right under Mom’s window, in the garden and on the hose to make sure we didn’t miss it. We ate lots of zucchini and cucumbers. Went on some nice walks. I read a lot. We managed to wring a decent weekend out of some not great circumstances.

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Gardeny Update

This is from the trail cam. I liked the silhouette.

I found a whole folder of great clips that I set aside. And that’s other than the big folder of saved clips. I try not to save too many. And I fail at that.

My sister-in-law gave me some heirloom seeds from Fort Vancouver gift shop. I tossed a bunch out there but only a little bit of success. Look at this beautiful lavender poppy!

The seed packets had these ridiculous suggestions for spacing out the plants. Six feet. Maybe I misread it and it’s six inches. I will be more aggressive next year.

This is the garden from a few weeks ago. Looking wild.

It’s dried up a bit now. We had a great bean harvest and I’m letting the rest stay out there to harvest as dried beans that I will use to plant next year and to eat. I let a bunch of peas dry out, too. I dug up a huge bunch of potatoes. We need to eat potatoes. Cucumbers look worthless as usual.

There are a few pumpkins, not a huge crop this year which is fine since we still have a ton of pumpkin in the freezer. Tomatoes are starting to come in. I picked two in one day last week.

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Critters Still Coming Through

Look at these cute little guys playing. At the moment, most of my camera card is raccoons playing around the bucket. I’ve been meaning to put the camera in another spot in the yard but never seem to get around to it.

I am scheduling posts again — busy week and big adventure next weekend in Santa Fe and hopefully I will have photos to share when I get back. Or rather, hopefully I will get around to sorting through the photos and posting a a few.

Look! Babies! I have been wishing we’d spot some babies riding on mama but also worried about getting what I wished for. Where is everyone going to end up living?

There was a special where we could add Paramount Plus to our extra-large existing menu of TV choices for cheap so we hopped on it.

I started watching one of the new Star Treks. I didn’t expect to watch the whole series but this show is perfect.

It’s like a crime show. There’s a problem introduced at the beginning. In the middle it seems like all is lost. But then they solve the problem and everything is good by the end. There are some threads that carry over several episodes but it’s not like a mini-series where it’s really a long movie.

There are so many great shows out now but sometimes I need something that isn’t dark or grim and gets resolved at the end.

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