The Raccoon in the Middle of the Hedge!

If you look carefully at the beginning of the clip, a raccoon comes out of the hedge — it’s just right of the middle of the screen. Those hilarious little tricksters.

Don’t get use to me posting this often. It’s amazing what a long stretch of time off does for a person.

A long time ago, I’m thinking it was the late 80s, I went on one of those package resort trips to Cancun. There are many tales to tell about that trip but the reason I bring it up now is that they pick you up from the airport in a short bus with a giant cooler full of booze as you board. The greeter told us that a week vacation was nice but it seemed like people really needed two weeks to fully unwind.

I think she was onto something.

To get back to the brown truck package — after the second delivery we returned it once again, time to the actual brown truck customer service center that is not far from our house. That individual also shook his head but said that a brown truck store wouldn’t know what to do with it so it was no wonder we got it back.

So far hasn’t shown up again. Hopefully the addressee is enjoying the well shaken contents by now.

Also, I didn’t mention but I have started working on the project of forever again. I know I’ve brought it up before and it’s a long story. I’ve probably written 50-60K of this thing over the years (much of which needs to be discarded) and promised myself I would finish it a dozen times.

I’m trying again. I have divided it into 3 smaller projects that I will worry about tying all together later. Part One is the project I used for my class and started writing earlier this month:

7446 / 30000 words. 25% done!

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Free Food

This is from the summer on one of our walks. I wondered aloud whether these people know they can pick the vegetables earlier. We did not take any. I think at that point we were battling garden over-supply ourselves.

My digital photo collection is in such disarray, it bums me to even think about how to rectify this. I would need to set aside a minimum of one entire weekend to get on top of it. Or take a whole week off from work.

I need a better system but also it’s too late. I have photos and duplicates. And I can’t take one picture of a pumpkin, I take 8 pictures of a pumpkin. Then it’s not like I delete the 7 less desirable ones.

Plus I moved things back and forth on my phone and have even more duplicates.

I do not recommend.

I wrote a note to write about this but now that I’m here I wonder why. We bought a cheap-o brand of rice and the leftovers go bad so quickly and so horrifyingly, I made Bob promise not to buy it again. What is it about rice, that when it goes bad it’s so gruesome? There are lots of food that are gross when they are bad or smell terrible when they are bad.

Anyone ever forget about greens?

But rice, OOF! If you don’t know what I mean, consider yourself very lucky.

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Wrong Delivery

I bought these for the office. None of the finger-food UNFRIENDLY napkins for us!

Maybe you already know this but when Delivery Service leaves a package on the porch, they ring the doorbell.

The other day the doorbell rang and by the time I got up to check, the big brown truck was pulling away.

The package was addressed to a person not us, in a city that is not us and about 200 miles from here. It was the right state.

The street address was almost the same.

The shipping label had our address.

I’m guessing big brown truck doesn’t look at the hand written label or if they do, they aren’t paid enough to care that the shipping form is sending the package somewhere else.

Now this was my problem. And I feel bad for all the mis-delivered packages that end up at addresses that do not care. But some person had packed this up and paid to send it to someone on the other side of the state. I felt it was important to get it back on its journey.

My sweetheart was running out to do another errand and stopped by the local big brown truck store and they shook their heads in disbelief and took the package back for another try.

Which is why I was speechless when two days later the package was delivered to us AGAIN, with a note underlining the wrong zip code and penciled in : ‘who did this?’ And on the side of the package, ‘get a new job.’

So say we all.

May all your packages be delivered correctly and on time.

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Same Old Grind

When I get tired of picking beans I leave them on the vines and at the end of the season everything dries up.

When I yank the beans out, I set the dried pods aside.

This year I had so many pods and I spent and afternoon sorting through them and look at all the beans!

I have about half this many set aside to plant next year and we are going to make these into bean soup.

I had a really cool pepper grinder but it stopped working right and would only product slightly crushed peppercorns that you would inevitably bite down on in an unsatisfactory way while you were enjoying your salad.

When my sister was here this summer she took it apart and took a peek and said it was kaput. Something in the innards was broken and it couldn’t be fixed.

She gave me this new cool pepper grinder for Christmas and it makes the most lovely freshly ground pepper. We have ground pepper on everything.

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That Is A Lot of Raccoons

This is cute but that’s a lot of raccoons for one yard.

I have some time off from work and in my mind I had all these long neglected projects and plans that I was going to do, like online classes, and tackle recipes I’d clipped, organize photos, read all that stuff I set aside for later.

Now we are here and I feel no urge to take care of these things. My new approach is to scrub all this stuff. Unsubscribe! Toss! Delete! Put in the donate pile! Don’t need to watch it, read it, finish it. It’s liberating but also, oddly, makes me angry.

Yesterday I rage-quit a subscription. Our household thinks journalism is important and we pay for a lot of stuff. One of my subscriptions for an electronic publication was due and the amount wasn’t anywhere on the dashboard. I know I signed up at a discount so I figured the regular rate was going to higher. But how do I find out? Why do I have to work for such basic information? I never figured it out. I cancelled the subscription.

I don’t think I ever summed up my final NaNo count. I just barely exceeded my goal. I’m not sure what to do with the project. Before I go any further I need to sit down and map out what I want it to be. But it was supposed to just be a fun for myself project but I still need some idea of where I’m headed.

17597 / 17000 words. 104% done!

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Alone on a Saturday Night

It’s cold and raining. A mourning dove has been in our backyard for about 2 hours, first perching gloomily on the edge of the bird bath as if stood up for a date, later on the ground picking at a few bird seeds scattered about.

I was concerned that there was something wrong. I am not the kind of person that wants to rescue a wild bird. But I also didn’t want to leave it out there as it’s getting dark if it’s hurt.

I took the compost out and it stayed on the ground and gave me an aggrieved look before flying off in warbly huff.

I thoughtfully threw fresh seeds out for it. What was it doing out in the rain, all alone, on a Saturday night?

We had our family Christmas last weekend and near as I can tell, no one took a single photo. It was good company and good food.

But I’m not going to lie: I am very happy not to cook another turkey until next year. As soon as I finish this I am prepping the last of the leftover into a noodle casserole delight.

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2021 Award Eligibility

First ever award eligibility post. It was a big year for me. I had two short story publications this year.

“Obstruction” (4600 words) in Fantasy Magazine, October 2021.

It features a Karuk immortal who ran away, a white-water rafting reality show taking over a sacred site, and a cranky tribal official.

“Security Breach at Sugar Pine Suites” (4200 words) in the Indigenous Futures issue of Apex Magazine.

It features a rebellious housekeeper, a washed-up boybander, and a cranky supervisor at an NDN casino in space.

I’m really proud of them both.

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Fish Hatchery, N. Idaho

This is the Kootenai Tribe’s fish hatchery on the Kootenai River in N. Idaho.

Back when I thought my class was ending before Thanksgiving, I snoozed a bunch of emails and set up a bunch of reminders so I could take care of a few things.

Then over the weekend everything lit up plus every company I have bought something from in the last twenty years sent me an email and it was completely overwhelming.

Next weekend I’ll figure it all out.

Another November finished.

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The Last Leaf of November

Check out Percy with his one little leaf and one little fig. He hung onto that one leaf for awhile.

On Thanksgiving Day I saw a bunch of birds around my feeders so I ran out with peanuts and goodies so they could enjoy a Thanksgiving meal, too.

I scared them all off.

I looked out 15 minutes later and Fat Squirrel had waddled into the picture and was going to town, hiding peanuts and stuffing his little face with seeds.

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Persimmons

When we were in Orleans, the persimmon tree was starting to produce. Mom was in charge and she picked a lot of persimmons. For some reason I thought I didn’t like persimmons but I was wrong. Persimmons are like the fruit you would invent if you could invent a fruit — a cross between a peach and an apple.

Last night I was half-dreaming about these last persimmons. I need to turn them into pulp so I can make cookies. My husband and brother love persimmon cookies.

I did not understand my own goal for NaNo. I thought it was 250 a day but I guess it was more like 400 a day. I need focus Monday and Tuesday if I’m going to make it.

15766 / 17000 words. 93% done!

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