Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Wanderings



When I left Montana I made a promise to myself that I would continue to take
"Backroad Adventures."
While they are certainly different here-we were only on one gravel road and it was smooth as silk-
we did go see some new territory.
For most of the trip we drove between the Missouri River on the left and the bluffs on the right with a railroad track on one side or the other.


The first three shots are of the Missouri River from the bluff overlook  at Weston Bend State Park.
It is worth commenting on the size of the river considering it's importance in the history of the American West.
Water travel, even upstream, is faster than travel by wagon or horseback(mule back etc).
Which is why the instructions given to Lewis and Clark were to use the Missouri and such of it's tributaries to find a Northwest Passage across the continent.
That didn't happen.
The Missouri is a very long river but back in the early days it was only deep enough for steamboats twice a year.
Once during the spring rains here and once when the snow melted upstream (think Montana, Dakotas, and so on.)
Otherwise is was really shallow.
Eventually a shallow draft steamboat was developed for just such use.
Small canoes, keelboats and flat bottom ferries could travel most of the year.
Today, the river has been dredged and confined by levies into a course that runs much deeper and faster than it used to.


Still it seems like the "Mighty Missouri" should be much larger than it actually is!
Unlike the Mississippi which is wide enough in places that you can't see the other side the Missouri is
easily crossed by a bridge.

The area around Weston used to have a great deal of tobacco grown around it and so the is a "Tobacco Barn" at the Park.


Now the rolling hills around the town of Weston are grass covered.
There are at least two wineries and one distillery-McCormicks



To make my sister-in-law, Jessie, jealous this is a photo of downtown Weston, MO.
She and I usually go shopping and out to lunch when she's here-there are lots of little unique shops.
Today, I only stopped long enough to take this photo as Quinn was with me.
They looked fairly busy for a Wednesday.

Our next stop was a side trip (gravel road) to Little Bean Marsh State Conservation Area.
Missouri has a great many of these small (and some large) conservation areas.  I think we passed 4 others today alone.
As is normal for us, we saw no wildlife here but it was interesting to note that only archery hunting was allowed and only with non-toxic materials.

Then we went on to Lewis and Clark State Park.
The wind had really picked up and there were whitecaps on the lake.


This is the Lewis and Clark Memorial at the park. 
 I've never seen one just like this and I've seen a lot of Lewis and Clark stuff!
While Quinn and I were walking back to the lake here I'm almost certain I saw an eagle!
It was too dark and too far away to tell for certain but it was very BIG.
Much too big to be a hawk.
It's wings seemed to be straight out, where a hawk flies with the wing tips curved up.
I stopped at the office to ask if they had one about but it was closed.
Lunchtime.

From here we finished up the drive into St Joseph, MO.
Wandered about a bit--okay a lot-- and saw lots of neat architecture
Really amazing looking place and had really amazing neighbors as well.
Just goes to show that getting lost is not a bad thing!

Then it was time for the drive back.
Next week I have another drive in mind!





Monday, November 28, 2016

Monday Musings


So,
After spending several hours quilting on 
"A Stitch in Nine" 
I have come to the conclusion that my stitch in the ditch is still 
crummy!
And,
my piecing on this one wasn't the best either!
But,
I will get better!
In fact, 
There has been some improvement already.
Thank Goodness.
I started out using a "stitch in the ditch" foot that came with my walking foot.
I couldn't see where the needle was going so I wasn't
very happy in that.
Changed over to a plain walking foot which was better.
More stitching tomorrow.
Even being less than pleased with the piece, 
I know it will keep me warm!

Right now I'm going to either cross-stitch of knit.


Saturday, November 26, 2016

On being an adult.

Which I am not!  Or at the very least I've had a really hard time returning to adultness after the trip!

I have been busy, but really that's no excuse.

After, looking for a place to rent and not finding anything available any time soon I took to the internet in search of a house to buy.  (Truthfully, I asked the Universe to slam a door on renting or buying as I couldn't decide which to do!  Pros and Cons to each option.  No rentals available was that door being slammed.)  I looked at several-it's surprising how many houses are built with the same floor plan so if you don't like that lay out you can eliminate them really quickly!  I did find one I really liked and the people accepted my offer!  We are hoping to close on Dec. 16th so I should be in before Christmas.  I doubt that any of my trees come out for the holiday though-bummer.  As soon as I'm in I'll post photos.

Quinn and I moved out of Ceili and put her into storage in the caves after emptying nearly everything out.  I can never remember what is and isn't in there after the winter, then I end up with duplicates!  So,  I'll just put together totes for trips out in her until I sell her.  I don't anticipate any long trips in her ever again-it just isn't comfortable.  We are living at an Extended Stay hotel in the city.  It's nice enough and is certainly bigger than Ceili although not much more comfortable!  I can set up my sewing machine at least and finished my Secret Santa gift for Chookblues swap-Santa picked it up yesterday!  Today, I plan to quilt A Stitch in Nine.  I think I have to go to storage and look for the binding though (and pick up the rag quilts to work on next.)  Sometimes my life seems to be all about taking and retrieving things from storage!

Also, today I have to hit the bookstore for a detailed Missouri Map (Quinn and I need to take some backroad adventures!) and Ethan's birthday book!  Hoping for blinders so I don't see any books I really want to buy!  I have so many books, even though I donated a great many I still need to do more.

Guess, I'm off to try this adulthood thing again!



Thursday, November 24, 2016


Happy Thanksgiving!

Monday, November 14, 2016

Monday Musings

Today,

I may have found my new home!  I still want the local children to take a look (if they want) but I'm pretty sure I will make an offer on it.  In the meantime I have to move out of Ceili and into extended stay.  I wan't Ceili to be empty when I put her into storage because I can't remember what's in her and wants not and I can't get into her once she's in the caves!  So I packed some boxes-what goes to storage, what goes with me?

I went to see Dr Mac, the eye doctor.  Eyes dilated and I'm still in shock.  The cataracts are "ripe"!  In April she wan't "impressed" by them and now they are ready.  I need to get moved first as I can't lift much after so I'm to see her again in January.  Surgery will likely be in February.  My right eye first then the left one two weeks later.  Lazer surgery and multifocal implants.  I have been wearing glasses since I was 12 it will be interesting to not wear them!  Still I will never have 10 year old eyes again and I might need some readers.

My eyes are still messed up so I need to get off here.


Sunday, November 13, 2016

Playing Catch-up!

I have been such a slacker!  Posts almost every day until I get home then nothing, sigh.

It has been a difficult November.  First, I was SO tired all I wanted to do was sleep.  After I left the quiet loveliness of Montana-where 6 cars on the highway constitutes a traffic jam-I drove through big city after big city.  Salt Lake, Las Vegas, LA, San Diego, Tuscon, El Paso, Dallas, Oklahoma City-all excepting San Diego new to me.  All with extensive freeways.  Making them all very tiring.  The dark circles and bags under my eyes that I lost in Montana caught up to me along the way home.
Due to all of that exhaustion, I could not decided if I should rent or buy, although I did begin the loan process for a home.

Talked to my financial advisor, set up appointments with my eye doctor and primary care doctor.  

Haven't a clue why I'm seeing my primary care doc except I got a message saying I needed to come in for a re-check (if she wants blood - and she always does) that will have to be another day! 

I have cataracts, have had for several years, and they are very slow growing ones.  Every time I leave the office they say "If you notice any change be sure to come in."  So, on the trip I began to have greater and greater difficulty reading road signs-even the giant highway signs-which creates some interesting side trips in cities even using Google audio directions.  They always say turn right at Harris St instead of take the next right and by the time I can see that it's Harris street I'm past it or in the wrong lane or some such nonsense!  Also, glare has become more of an issue.  Anyway, tomorrow I'll check in with the eye doc-she'll probably say they aren't ready to come off but maybe I'll get a new script and will see better.  Also in the vision department, I think I need to purchase a Kindle paperwhite.  The backlit feature of my Fire is nice but I think it's causing eye strain.  Urgh, the problems of getting old!  Just grateful that I have insurance that will cover most of this stuff.

The indecision over living arrangements continued until I said I was going to wait until after the election.  (more on that later) But it seems that finding a house to buy will be easier than finding a place to rent so I'm house hunting.  There are to many options there as well but I'm going single family so Quinn can have a yard to run in again and I can have a veggie patch.  At least until I can't manage it.

The Election.  
First just let me apologize to my friends outside the US.  I am sorry that the way our elections are set up has allowed a man to be elected who did not win the popular vote, again. Unhappily, that will likely affect your countries.  I am so sorry.  I understand why people voted for him (even though I think they are misguided, they are entitled to their opinion I just get to have mine!) I have been tied in knots since Tuesday, terrified of what's to come, with a continual tummy ache.  I have no real choice but to go forward and I will. I have considered leaving-actually I first considered it after Bush the Second was elected but I love this country.  Larry served in the Air Force for over 22 years and I have always been proud of that.  My ancestors, all of them, were immigrants. One came on the Mayflower, One group was made up of French huguenots and I am the 14th generation born in the state of Missouri.  Even those of American Indian blood came from Asia.  My children and grandchildren are here and not all of them could join me.  Plus, if all of us who stood opposed to him leave who will fight the fight ahead.  So, I won't leave unless I cannot see any other option.  I will not speak his name, he may be the political leader of my country but I do not claim him any other way.  He will remain He Who Shall Not Be Named (HWSNBN for short or Voldemort for those who have not read Harry Potter.)

So, in the coming days I'll attempt to be more vigilant in my posts and more positive in my heart! I'll even get the camera out!

Monday, October 31, 2016

Home!

I've really slacked off with the blogposts this past week, so sorry.

No pictures-who wants to see really flat pains nearly covered by oil wells, and associated equipment.

Big Springs Texas has a large refinery-which is sort of architecturally interesting but not beautiful.

Finally hit the green again!  And trees!

Spent part of a day with my Baylor college roomie, her husband and sister in Grand Prairie-lovely visit.  Gloria took me off to the library's book sale-I bought books!  Then we took Quinn off to a nice dog park, something she hadn't been able to do for a while.

Skipped driving though Dallas with Ceili by taking a state farm road out of Weatherford, it was a nice drive and brought me out almost at the Oklahoma state line.

Spent Friday night just outside of Oklahoma City at a really nice park, didn't unhook just got up the next morning and hit the highway again.  Usually, I'd go up Interstate highway 35 which turns into the Kansas Turnpike then into the southwest corner of the Kansas City metro.  This time I took the Oklahoma turnpike/Will Rogers turnpike into Missouri at Joplin and Interstate 49 North.  That one takes you into the Metro at the Interstate 470 loop east skipping a great deal of congestion!  Pulled into Oak Grove Missouri campground early enough that I got all set up before dark!

Yesterday was spent watching Kolby play soccer and catching up with the children.  I managed to sneak up on Brayden and Beth with hugs-Both big boys were glad to see me, it's really lovely when your children and grandchildren miss you!  Scott and Ryan came up from Columbia, Rob and Tanya make Baked potato soup for one and all.  It was great!

I missed apple season here but not the fall color!  Some trees have lost their leaves but the really pretty ones like hard maples have just begun to change! Grass is still mostly green.

I'm glad to be back!

Today, I have to start the process of finding a place to live!  First though I have to decided where and How I want to live!