I miss you Sam!!

I miss you Sam!!
I miss you Sam!!

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Evening Wisdom, Summer, Beauty


Summer is the time when one sheds one's tensions with one's clothes, and the right kind of day is jeweled balm for the battered spirit. A few of those days and you can become drunk with the belief that all's right with the world.
Ada Louise Huxtable

No day is so bad it can't be fixed with a nap.


Summer bachelors, like summer breezes, are never as cool as they pretend to be.
Nora Ephron

Be not angry that you cannot make others as you wish them, since you cannot even make yourself as you wish to be.
T. A. Kempkis


Be like the flower, turn your face to the sun.
Kahlil Gibran

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Shadow Shot Sunday!

Join us and play with shadows! Shadow Shot is hosted every Sunday by Hey Harriet click on her name to sign up and start looking for shadows!

I was taking some glasses downstairs this morning and suddenly saw this shadow and had to reach for the camera! I think I'm getting a reputation for being a loony in the neighborhood, but what the heck, I'm having fun!


Out on the deck, having a glass of tea notice how weird my finger shadows looked on the yellow plastic! Surely those aren't my fingers????


A lovely quiet day on the beach, blue skies, blue water, no people and tree shadows in the sand! Marvelous!


Shadow of a plant through the sheer curtains reflected on the floor in the living room.

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Friday, June 26, 2009

Evening Wisdom, Summer, Beauty, Humor


Life is easier than you'd think; all that is necessary is to accept the impossible, do without the indispensable, and bear the intolerable.
~Kathleen Norris


Humor is merely tragedy standing on its head with its pants torn.
~Irvin S. Cobb


We should give meaning to life, not wait for life to give us meaning.


If I had no sense of humor, I would long ago have committed suicide.
~Mahatma Gandhi

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Friday Humor

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Evening Wisdom, Thoughts and Beauty

Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath away.

He who has nothing to die for has nothing to live for.
~Moroccan Proverb

God writes a lot of comedy... the trouble is, he's stuck with so many bad actors who don't know how to play funny.
~Garrison Keillor

Love is an act of endless forgiveness, a tender look which becomes a habit.
~Peter Ustinov

Sky Watch Friday!

Time once again to share your lovely skies! Sky Watch is hosted by Klaus, Sandy, Ivar, Wren, Fishing Guy and Louise. Click here to sign up and share the beauty.

We had lots of lovely blue skies the past several days and I enjoyed catching some of them down at the harbor. Click on the photos to embiggen and see the mountains in the background. It was a little hazy, but still a lovely day!




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Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Evening Wisdom, Summer, Beauty

Rest is not idleness, and to lie sometimes on the grass on a summer day listening to the murmur of water, or watching the clouds float across the sky, is hardly a waste of time. ~John Lubbock

Do what we can, summer will have its flies. ~Ralph Waldo Emerson

The miracle is not to fly in the air, or to walk on the water, but to walk on the earth. ~Chinese Proverb

In spite of the cost of living, it's still popular. ~Kathy Norris

My life has a superb cast but I can't figure out the plot. ~Ashleigh Brilliant

Looking Back - Part 7 -- A Family Hero

The summer of 1948 I turned fourteen and my father decided to take my mother and I to visit a cousin of his and her family who lived in Bandera, Texas. Bandera is a small town on State Highway 16 fifty miles northwest of San Antonio on the beautiful Medina River. It was founded around 1853 although ranchers and farmers had lived in the area since the 1830s. After the Civil War the town boomed as a staging area for cattle drives up the Western Trail. Later it became famous for it’s Dude Ranches, actually it still is.

The cousin we were going to visit was named Ouida and she was married to a member of a family that had lived in the same house since the 1840s and his name was Frank “Big Daddy” Montague. Hmmm does that sound "texan" enough for you? It was a large ranch where they raised mostly sheep at the time. They also owned the one bank in Bandera. They had four sons, Charles, who had died on Tarawa during WW2, Bruce, who was a fighter pilot in the Marines and who had just come home shortly before we arrived. Then there was Frank Jr. , the oldest who ran the bank and the youngest, George who was studying to be a priest. Ouida’s mother, Laura, lived with them. Laura was my grandfathers sister, she was in her ninties, but still very active. She taught her great grandchildren French and also how to play the piano.

The old ranch house had been added on to over all those years and had grown from a tiny two room cabin with walls two feet thick, to a sprawling two story home that maintained the original two rooms with narrow slits on either side of the fireplace that they had used to shoot at attacking Indians. The door frame into that original part of the house had all manner of interesting things from cattle brands, to names and dates, all carved in the surface. It was a fascinating place and I remember being totally awed.

Our first night there, they served dinner out on a broad screened in porch. Young Mexican girls that worked for them scurried about setting the table and then serving us, bringing the next dish whenever Ouida gently rang a small silver bell.

Just as we were finishing dinner, a racy little Ford convertible with its top down pulled up out front and a tall, lanky guy in jeans, a white shirt and a white cowboy hat and boots climbed out and headed for the door of the porch where we were eating. I remember thinking that my heart had stopped beating because with his jet black hair, blue eyes and deeply tanned skin he was the most handsome man I was sure I had ever seen. He was Bruce, Ouida and Big Daddy’s third son and he had just returned from the war, he was a Marine pilot and cousin or not, I was in love!

Later that evening after dinner, Bruce invited all of us to go with him to one of the restaurants in town that had a dance floor and music where he said he would teach me to dance the “Cotton Eyed Joe”! He led us out to the convertible, but instead of opening the door for me, he lifted me up and set me in the front seat. I was certain that I had died and gone to heaven – anyone who could lift my long legs off the ground had won my heart forever. Grinning, my parents then climbed into the back seat and we headed for town. I did learn to do the “Cotton-Eyed Joe”, the “Put Your Little Foot” and a couple of others I can’t remember and it was the most exciting and fun night that I had ever had.

Bruce was also a world champion calf and trick roper and he was getting ready to compete in an event at Madison Square Garden and the day after our night on the dance floor I got a clue as to why I had gotten all the special attention. He was practicing roping calves and he really needed someone to open the gate and shoo the calf out of the shute. It was August, it was hotter than hell, but I happily spent the entire day in the heat and the dust shushing calves out for him to rope. I was a little put out when I learned that he had a real date that night, but we were leaving the next morning anyway and my parents wanted to get to bed early. Next time, I thought to myself.

It was a number of years before I did go back to Bandera. That time it was for an entire summer during which I worked on one of the Dude Ranches. I was surprised to find out as I did some research for this piece, that it is still operating. I also bumped into Bruce years later, he was married and had children of his own by then, but we both laughed about that night years earlier. The years slipped away, I married and my husband was stationed in San Antonio. One weekend I took him to Bandera and we spent the weekend on the ranch that my cousins had converted into a dude ranch. Later when my first daughter, Robyn, was born, my cousin, Ouida, became her godmother. But time slipped by, there was Vietnam and then we were stationed in Europe for three years. We ended up living in Montana and we never made it back to Bandera. I've thought about it many times, often wished that I could go back for a visit.

As I was doing the research I also came across an obituary for that tall, dark and handsome first love. He had a remarkable life as you can see.

Obituaries for Sunday, February 19, 2006

As a member of one of Bandera's pioneer ranching families, Bruce began his ranching duties at a young age. It was in these childhood years that he was taught the art of trick roping. This became a lifelong pastime that he shared with thousands of people all over the world. Entertaining others was encouraged by his parents. ...Bruce grew up a member of the St. Stanislaus Catholic Church and attended St. Joseph's Catholic Grade School in Bandera. After graduating from Central Catholic High School in San Antonio, Texas, he was drafted at the age of 18, and chose the United States Marine Corps to serve his country. After boot camp, Bruce received 'high man' honors at ordinance school in Norman, Okla. He then would serve as an SBD air gunner in World War II and later flew Corsair fighter-bombers in post-war China. During the Korean War, Bruce flew 147 combat missions with Marine Fighter Squadron 311 and then, as an exchange pilot with the USAF, became a flight commander flying F-86 Sabre jets for the 51st Fighter Interceptor Wing. During this conflict, he had the responsibility of leading Ted Williams (Hall of Fame Boston Red Sox) and friend John Glenn (first man to orbit the Earth) on their first combat missions. In addition to flying, he was involved in ground combat as a forward air controller, in which capacity he played a vital role during the first battle of The Hook. He received the bronze star for directing more strikes than any other Marine forward air controller. On one occasion he directed 48 air strikes within a 48 hour period. At the end of the war he is believed to have had the most jet combat time of any Marine. After Korea, Bruce attended Naval Test Pilot School in Patuxent River, Md. He then served as a test pilot, among other duties testing air weaponry at the Naval Ordinance Test Station, China Lake, Calif. He also served as executive officer of Marine Fighter Squadron 114, assigned to the carrier Franklin D. Roosevelt. In Vietnam he was commanding officer of Marine Fighter/Attack Squadron 122, flying F-4 Phantom's from Da Nang. He flew 188 combat missions over Hanoi, over the Ho Chi Minh Trail, and while providing ground support at battles such as Dong Ha in 1968. He and his squadron played a vital role in the defense of Da Nang during the 1968 Tet attack. He then became air officer in charge of Marine air support in the Khe Sanh area. In all, Lt. Col. ...Having received a business administration degree from St. Mary's University, Bruce then pursued a career in real estate as a land broker in Bandera for 30 years. He was also a member of First Baptist Church Bandera. He took particular delight in entertaining children with his trick roping at schools, festivals and community events. He was an inaugural performer at the Texas Folklife Festival, where he participated for more than 21 years. Bruce loved roping, flying and spending time with his family. Many of his daredevil airplane antics and tricks are ingrained in local legend, such as buzzing Main Street, the Montague Ranch and other Bandera landmarks with planes. In his last years, Bruce dedicated much of his time as a board member of the San Antonio State School, serving in all the different officer capacities. He also spent a great deal of time writing a military memoir with his son Bruce Jr., titled "The Hook."

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Evening Words, Wisdom, Love and Beauty

Life's not always fair. Sometimes you can get a splinter even sliding down a rainbow.
~Cherralea Morgen

Just living is not enough. One must have sunshine, freedom, and a little flower. ~Hans Christian Anderson

Love me and the world is mine.
~David Reed

The love game is never called off on account of darkness.
~Tom Masson

Here's Something to Think About.

Will I Live to see 80?

I recently picked a new primary care doctor. After two visits and exhaustive Lab tests, he said I was doing 'fairly well' for my age.

A little concerned about that comment, I couldn't resist asking him, 'Do you think I'll live to be 80?'

He asked, 'Do you smoke tobacco, or drink beer or wine?'

'Oh no,' I replied. 'I'm not doing drugs, either!'

Then he asked, 'Do you eat rib-eye steaks and barbecued ribs?'

I said, 'No, my former doctor said that all red meat is very unhealthy!'

'Do you spend a lot of time in the sun, like playing golf, sailing, hiking, or bicycling?'

'No, I don't,' I said.

He asked, 'Do you gamble, drive fast cars, or have a lot of sex?'

'No,' I said

He looked at me and said,.... 'Then, why do you even give a shit?

Monday, June 22, 2009

Summer, Wisdom, Beauty, Love

Deep summer is when laziness finds respectability.
~Sam Keen

Rest is not idleness, and to lie sometimes on the grass on a summer day listening to the murmur of water, or watching the clouds float across the sky, is hardly a waste of time.
~John Lubbock

Love where you are, love who you're with and love what you do.

The world needs more warm hearts and fewer hot heads.

That's My World -- The Columbia River Gorge

Time once again to share the beauty, the fun of your world! Hosted by Klaus, Sandy, Ivar, Wren, Fishing Guy and Louise, That's Your World is a fun and exciting meme! Click here to sign up and share not only your world, but the fun!

One of the incredible places in my world is the Columbia River Gorge. Thanks to Google and Wikipedia I'm able to show you the very best. I've been very fortunate to see it, to boat on it and just to stand above it and have my breath taken away.

The Columbia River Gorge is a canyon of the Columbia River in the Pacific Northwest of the United States. Up to 4,000 feet (1,200 m) deep, the canyon stretches for over 80 miles (130 km) as the river winds westward through the Cascade Range forming the boundary between the State of Washington to the north and Oregon to the south.

Extending roughly from the confluence of the Columbia with the Deschutes River down to eastern reaches of the Portland metropolitan area, the gorge furnishes the only navigable route through the Cascades and the only water connection between the Columbia River Plateau and the Pacific Ocean.

The gorge holds federally protected status as a National Scenic Area and is a popular recreational destination.

The gorge has supported human habitation for over 13,000 years. Evidence of the Folsom and Marmes people, who crossed the Bering land bridge from Asia, were found in archaeological digs. Excavations near Celilo Falls, a few miles east of The Dalles, show humans have occupied this salmon-fishing site for more than 10,000 years.

The gorge has provided a transportation corridor for thousands of years. American Indians would travel through the Gorge to trade at Celilo Falls, both along the river and over Lolo Pass on the north side of Mount Hood. In 1805, the route was used by the Lewis and Clark Expedition to reach the Pacific.[3] Early European and American settlers subsequently established steamboat lines and railroads through the gorge. Today, the BNSF Railway runs freights along the Washington side of the river, while its rival, the Union Pacific Railroad, runs freights along the Oregon shore. Until 1997, Amtrak's Pioneer also used the Union Pacific tracks. The Portland segment of the Empire Builder uses the BNSF tracks that pass through the gorge.

The Columbia River Highway, built in the early 20th century, was the first major paved highway in the Pacific Northwest. Shipping was greatly simplified after Bonneville Dam and The Dalles Dam submerged the gorge's major rapids.

Multonomah Falls

In November 1986, Congress made it the first U.S. National Scenic Area and established the Columbia River Gorge Commission as part of an interstate compact.[4] In 2004, the gorge became the namesake of the Columbia Gorge American Viticultural Area, a 4,432-acre (1,794 ha) area located on both sides of the river.

What Can I Say?

What Can I Say?
I'm interested in almost everything. Use to like to travel, but it's too expensive now. I take Tai Chi classes, swim, volunteer in a Jump-start program for pre-schoolers. I'm an avid reader and like nearly everyone these days I follow politics avidly. I'm a former teacher and Special Projects Coordinator for a Telecommunications company, Assistant to the President of a Japanese silicon wafer manufacturing company. Am now enjoying retirement -- most of the time. I have two daughters, one son-in-law and two sons scattered all over the country. No grandchildren.

Portland Time