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Saturday, June 21, 2014


Finally summer is here. We've been waiting for this to happen ever since it started getting hot sometime in January . . . now we have to figure out what we can do about it. How should we celebrate the Solstice, maybe we'll BBQ.

Some of the representative colors of the season. The drought here in Northern California will play a role on the colors as the days go on. We personally are watering only about one third as much as last year -- hope it helps.

Father's Day Past

It seems like a ways back but just six days ago . . . it was a relaxed day in our house. There were gifts and special meal items, telephone calls and all the trimmings:

Top left is a gift Gail worked on (needle pointing) for about two years on and off. It is a comfortable looking Chevy pickup, I am guessing around a 1954, filled with produce and beautifully done with all the bright colors. 

The musical gift (courtesy of Lisa & Bob) is Barbershop Quartet music that I really enjoy. When my kids were little and we went on vacation (or other long drives) I always played this type of music and both kids though they probably would not admit it, sang along with me and the group as we sped about the highway.

All in all, it was a great day!

Dino's New Chew

Dino is happiest when he is chewing on one of his chew-toys. The last Nylabone took him about a month to demolish and he has a few that have lingered in his basket for him to once in awhile choose.

But there is no finer moment than when he is told that he has a "new chew-toy". In the left pic he looks forlorn as he looks at one of the stragglers that has been around forever -- we dispose of the gnawed down bones once they get to a certain size.

In the middle he is admonished to be patient and if so will get to have the new about two pound peanut butter flavored Nylabone. He is and he does get the prized chew. It should take him at least a month to wear this one down to disposal size.

He will chew this on his own frequently, but his favorite chew time is when he sees that I am done with dinner and he will bring the bone over for me to hold for him. I usually wind up holding that chew-toy for about an hour before he gives into a drowsy pre-nighttime nap.

The "Dates" Coming Up . . .

This next week has tons of folks celebrating and one very special to me . . .

The "Anniversary" side of the ledger is almost as populated as the birth-dates -- it is June after all . . .

And With Those Birthdays . . .

Every few years or so -- check your wallet -- one of the cards could be expiring on your birthday. And,
sometimes some of the most stressful words can be read in a letter from the DMV: Testing Required.

In this case, thank goodness it was only "the written" part of the test -- not the dreaded driving test. But never-the-less, there was some associated stress with trying to recall the many obscure facts and rules that most of us do not think about until we have to take the test for whatever reason.

And, there is the thought of spending "half the day" in lines being guided by helpful uniformed folks and surrounded by what appears to be stressed out and crazed people.

But, surprise, surprise, with an appointment, the lengthy lines were by-passed and the exam administered politely and professionally AND in less than 30 minutes, all was done with a passing grade! Good for several more years!

How We Spent our Entertainment Hours

We were out and about this week and found ourselves in a waiting room watching what ever was on their large screen TV -- and it happened to be a "World Cup" Soccer match. We watched and enjoyed. When we went home we recorded the next several matches.

We have really enjoyed the games -- and we might just review some of the rules for further enjoyment. We are amazed that 90 minutes can go by without a goal scored, as happened in one of the matches that we saw.

We watched France win big over the Swiss which surprised us somewhat. Then I see that a nephew of mine (who happens to be in Paris at the moment) reports that the streets of Paris were inundated with celebrants.

We look forward to seeing more games and how it will all play out. We are also watching the San Francisco Giant's baseball games -- but they have not been doing well lately losing six games in a row -- and they were the leading team . . .

What is on Our Nightstand

Well, last week we were reading "Rin Tin Tin" but that got really tedious. We had high hopes for the book but that was not to be -- but we have started another book and we both find it MUCH more interesting:

Probably a lot of folks might not be as interested as the two of us are -- Thomas Bloch is the son of Henry Bloch and Henry and his brother Richard founded H&R Block. Both of us have personal experience working at H&R Block the same time as Thomas (and Henry & Richard).

But the really interesting part is that while Thomas was the CEO of H&R Block he decided to make a career change and become an inner city math teacher instead.

Gail was a math teacher in a major inner city school and a school administer for over thirty years so she can relate to the many experiences shared by Thomas Bloch. I too relate as some of the experiences of teaching that all three of us did at Block . . . we are about a third of the way through the book and it just gets better as we read on . . .

So, that was a bit of our week. It is Saturday and that means burgers tonight! See you all in a few!

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