Friday, August 12, 2011


In our bus (we both know it is not legally mine, but since I live in it, I’ll use the first person) we have a good water heater.

But it is small, maybe 5 or 6 gallons and comes on with a switch. There is no automatic hot water. You turn the switch on and wait 20 or 30 minutes.

Tonight I turned the switch on while I was fixing dinner. After dinner I went out and dug up some strawberry plants. Of course I got nice and dirty in the process.

I came into the bus ready for a good hot shower. But when I turned the water on, after getting properly ready to shower, but the water was at best luke warm and it turned to cool.

Ahh, Miriam had washed the dishes and she has not learned to be careful with hot water. But it was hot so a cool shower was good.

In our house, we had a 20 gallon heater that would heat water almost as fast as it could be drawn out.

Life on 5 gallons of hot water does change some things.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

crazy summer

This has been a crazy summer.

We moved 3 1/2 hours from out home in Idaho. We did not do much prior planning. The time was right and we did it. Now we have an agreement to sell our acre. We are selling in a very weak market, which means not as much money as we would like, but that is OK. The buyer is a young couple, good friends, who value the gardens and the plants.

This week we learn that my only sister has an inoperable, untreatable brain disease. We don't yet know what all of this means. It is a condition that seems to be rare. While it has a name, there is virtually nothing on the internet about it, so we are left in the blank for now.

Those are pretty gut wrenching events, and all happened this summer. Miriam is happy and that is very good. She has adjusted well. I am slowly finding my niche. But we are the only family my sister has. My daughters care deeply about her and will do all in their power to help, but right now no one even knows what to expect, and what we speculate is not good.

And, so it goes.

A good part of this is the natural product of aging. I don't think of myself as particularly old, but the numbers are there. No denial allowed.

The comfort in all of this is that our family are very close. We deeply care for each other.

For that I am eternally thankful.

This is the grandson who is referred to as "the baby" in the poem below.
It is hard to imagine that innocent looking boy causing so much commotion.

sick sick

When my youngest grandson was a baby, his mother, in frustration of new motherhood, wrote this piece. She is an excellent speller, but this was written on the fly, in the mood of the moment. I have reproduced it exactly as she wrote it.

sick, sick
both boys are sick
They’ve got the flu
What do I do?
Poo and throw up every where
I have no washing machine
It’s a bear
All appointments out the door
instead I’m home to clean the floor
Poo and throw up every where
Oh, there ’s some more
in that chair
The baby crys (sic!) he’s out of food
If I move Joshua it may be rude
Poo and throw up every where
my sick kids are quite the pair
I cannot go to the store
I cannot make it to the door
I cannot hear above the roar
of crying and Disney channel
it’s a war
I cannot get to the chore
of picking up stuff off the floor
Curtis may be home at four
Or it may be later
I can’t take more
Poo and throw up everywhere
look, I’ve got some in my hair
Baby is crabby
he wants held
If I hold him
food on the plaes wi be jelled
Poo and throw up everywhere
all outfits soiled, nothing to wear
throw up, diaper rash, diareah (sic), yeah!
snotty noses, whimpering noises, limp kneeses (sic), hey!
Poo and throw up everywhere
Mom did it for me. I guess it’s fair

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

I am fascinated by the randomness of tree bark.

the miserable ones

Tonight public TV showed a wonderful production of "Les Misérables."

It has been a while since I read the book. But so much of it comes through. It is a horrible story, yet it is a story of redemption of death and rebirth.

The book was good, but the music is unforgettable.

There are times when we all think our lives are pretty miserable. It goes with this thing called LIFE, I guess. Today i went to an AD support group, the first time I attended this group. There were half a dozen women, the facilitator, and me, the only guy.

In this town of 50,000 I am sure there are more than half a dozen people with some sort of dementia. Yet, most miserably they try to do it on their own. I am sure at least some do it wonderfully well.

I have attended an AD support group for most of the last dozen years. I am glad I have. I have learned a great deal by listening and participating in the discussions.

Today a lady told of how her husband won't go in the bathroom because there are horses in there. She went logical on him, explaining that there really weren't any. I said I would handle it differently. I'd go chase the horses back into the pasture, thank the new neighbor (as fictitious as the horses) for his help, and tell him all was clear now.

My reality is not hers, nor theirs. My system is pretty simple. I meet her on her level.

So far, it works.

Yea, one of these.
(I didn't say anything about the bushel of goodies that go with it. Now those will really offer a challenge to find a home.)

stand mixers

There is one kitchen machine that all guides will tell you does not belong in an RV kitchen.

That is a stand mixer. They take up too much room for their use.

So, guess what? I brought in my Kitchen-Aid mixer last night. Not only is it a stand mixer, it is the big Kitchen-Aid, the one they call the "professional" model. Not the one where the motor head tilts back, but the one where the bowl raises and lowers with an arm on the side.

Yea, that one.

So, where is it going to go in this tiny galley? Not sure yet. Not sure of too much right now, but it seems like a necessary part of my kitchen gear.

I was going to buy Miriam a simple birthday present one year, went into the store without a mission, and walked out with this machine that I could not even begin to afford now.

Ahh, those were the days.

Monday, August 8, 2011

I believe these are Mountain Ash berries.
The Mountain Ash is the state something or other. Not the state tree or the state flower, but years ago I was told it was the state something.

galley space

It has not been a hot sumer, here in what I think is still the mountain west.

The neighborhood fruit stand has a sign: NO TOMATOES, cold weather, wet weather. At farmers market yesterday there were some red tomatoes and they were going for $2.50 a pound, but green beans were $3.25.

We picked a couple of red tomatoes this morning, granddaughter and I. We were putting up trellis for the pole beans, something that we might have done in June. The garden got in late and the weather did not help any.

Still all is well. Miriam is snarky once in a while, but not often enough to get too annoying. Yesterday while friend David was here, she was especially rough.

When friend David came up he brought half a dozen boxes of stuff from our kitchen in Idaho. By modern standards it is a small kitchen. (I have noticed that the bigger the house, the bigger and fancier the kitchen, but no one ever cooks any more. Interesting.) But the Bus galley is a lot smaller yet.

That means a whole different method of storing. Different size containers, different everything.

Shucks, by christmas we should have it lined out pretty well.