Monday, January 31, 2011

it's almost here

I've been busy getting ready for the blizzard:

  • got candles  - check
  • got lamp oil - check
  • got flash light batteries - check
  • got enough kerosene to burn for 4 days - check (in case we lose power)
Then Dorothy came home from work and informed me we weren't ready for the storm. "We can't be trapped in the house during a winter storm without donuts," she said.  So it was off to Wal-mart to fight our way through the crowd to get donuts.

This is the radar image at 10:40. You can see the storm approaching from the west. The black lines are the boundaries between Oklahoma, Arkansas, Kansas, and Missouri.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

imminent blizzard

With modern technology meteorologists are making long term forecasts. By long term I mean the middle of next week. It was 70 degrees yesterday and it felt so good to go outside without a coat and breathe some fresh air. Then, last night I started receiving email alerts for a winter storm that is approaching from the west. The system is still in the Pacific Ocean and the weather service is predicting as much as 10 inches of snow and ice, and bone chilling cold. With the ice storm of two years ago still fresh in my memory I'll be spending the next two days stocking up on kerosene and candles. We lost electricity for 12 days in that storm so I'm getting ready to batten down the hatches.  Of course, there's always the possibility that the forecast is wrong.  I'll keep you posted.

Monday, January 24, 2011

quote of the day

The most absurd apology for authority and law is that they serve to diminish crime.  Aside from the fact that the State is itself the greatest criminal, breaking every written and natural law, stealing in the form of taxes, killing in the form of war and capital punishment, it has come to an absolute standstill in coping with crime.

--Emma Goldman

what I'm reading now

I just finished another good one by Alan Watts. Myth and Religion is a compilation of lectures that Watts gave over a period of time from 1956 to 1971. In these lectures he questions "whether the image of a divine patriarch is still intellectually plausible in the light of our ever growing understanding of the universe".  And he "explores how Christianity has diverged historically from the teachings of Christ", and states that the Church's "investment in moral issues may  be a ploy to  cover up for the lack of any substantial religious teaching in organized religion today". It's a good read and will be a good exercise in thinking for the reader.

birthday dinner

We had a dinner for Blake's (our grand daughter Sami's boyfriend) birthday.  His dinner choice was tacos with cornbread and beans. Dorothy also made a white birthday cake with buttercream frosting and a coconut cream pie.

Sitting around the table after dinner.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

another snow

It started snowing again last night. The roads are slick and hazardous so Dorothy stayed home from work. It will be a day of coffee, cookies, and old movies. 

In anticipation of this winter storm I put extra feed out for the birds and they were there before dawn for breakfast.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

time to refill the bird feeder

I supervise while Jenna refills the bird feeder

Caribbean Honeymoon

The day after their wedding Brad and Rachel returned to St. Thomas and prepared to sail away west on their honeymoon. Here are photos of their trip to the island of Culebra:

This is how they made their morning coffee.

They use this dinghy to get from the sail boat to the dock. Their boat is one of those seen in the distance.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

quote of the day

Jared Loughner was considered too mentally unstable to attend community college. He was rejected by the Army. Yet buy a Glock hand gun and a 33 round magazine? No problem.

Nicholas D. Kristoff,  New York Times

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

January Cold

Yesterday it was warmer in Chicago, New York, and Juneau than it was in north east Oklahoma. This morning Dorothy and I were on the road before sun up on our way to a doctor's appointment in Owasso, a two hour drive. When we left home it was 9 degrees with a wind chill factor of below zero. The countryside was spotty with snow but fortunately the turnpike was clean and dry. After the appointment it had warmed up to a balmy 12 degrees. We stopped at a Cracker Barrel restaurant for some hot coffee with eggs, sausage, hash browns, biscuits and gravy and grits.  That kept us warm until our evening meal. Now it's almost time to turn in. I have the faucets dripping to keep the pipes from bursting. The forecast low is 4 degrees, but it's actually going to rise above freezing tomorrow. At 35 degrees it will seem like a spring day.

Monday, January 10, 2011

What I'm Reading Now

Jonathan Franzen's new book, Freedom, is the best novel I've read in years. He has a talent for shedding light on the emotions, life experiences, and relationships that form who we are as we grow older. It's a complicated family saga that deals with the crucial issues of our time: sex, drugs, politics, and money. In this tale an upper middle class family, the Berglunds, begins to unravel from the forces that chip away at marriage and family relationships. It's an entertaining insightful read.

January snow

When I retired I thought it would be the end of scraping ice and snow off the windshield every winter morning. But, since Dorothy is still working I get up and scrape the car for her.  It snowed here yesterday afternoon and into the night. Dorothy made it to work fine with just a few slick spots. Other people were sliding into the ditch but Dorothy skilfully navigated her big Buick over hills and around the curves to Tahlequah.

Friday, January 07, 2011

the birds

This week I volunteered to participate in a bird survey for the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife.  The survey requires that you check your feeder at least 4 times a day and count the number of each specie that you see, then  record the largest number of specie that you observed at any time. I have observed 15 species so far. Here is the tally:
  •  13 Cardinals
  •   2 House Sparrows
  •   1 White Crowned Sparrow
  •   1 White Throated Sparrow
  •   3 Black Capped Chickadees
  •   2 White Breasted Nuthatches
  •   1 Blue Jay
  •   1 Purple Finch
  •   3 American Goldfinches
  •   1 Carolina Wren
  •   1 Red Bellied Woodpecker
  •   4 Dark-Eyed Juncos
  •   2 Tufted Titmouse
  •   2 Starlings
  •   1 Mocking Bird
I took many photos, but these three are the best. Birds don't always pose just right.

Red Bellied Woodpecker



The woodpecker shares the feeder with an American Goldfinch.

quote of the day

Happiness is always a by-product. It is probably a matter of temperament, and for anything I know it may be glandular. But it is not something that can be demanded from life, and if you are not happy you had better stop worrying about it and see what treasures you can pluck from your own brand of unhappiness.

--Robertson Davies

Sunday, January 02, 2011

A wedding in the family

At 1:11pm 1/11/11 our daughter Rachel was married to Brad Henderson. The wedding took place at St. Catherine's at Bell Gable in Fayetteville. AR. The next day they flew to St. Thomas where they will make their home.

Dorothy made their cake.

Brad with his brother and best man, Craig.

I am about to walk Rachel down the aisle.

Kelly was the bride's maid for her sister.

The clan

New Year's Eve tragedy

Before dawn on New Year's eve we were awakened by a severe thunderstorm. The same storm produced a tornado that touched down 11 miles from us in Cincinnati, AR.  This evening we drove by and I took these photos of the destruction.