Monday, July 25, 2011

What's Been Goin On?

I'm sure that's a title of a song.  Yes, I have been playing lots of music.  Guitar lesson on Tuesday, jam session on

Wed. night and another acoustic jam on Friday afternoon.  Practice, practice.  It's been a lot of fun trying new


Maggie has found her way to the neighbors so we had a lengthy session of teaching Miss Maggie to stay home.

Jon had to bring her back three times.  He played fetch with both dogs during the afternoon.  Maggie learned from

Mollie to return her ball and place it on the picnic table bench next to Jon.    She went to the vet today for her

next series of shots.  She weighs 24.4 pounds and the vet says she needs to go on a diet!  She doesn't look

overweight in this photo.   This was her third trip in the car and she was well behaved even though the car trip

is terrifying to her.  The look on her face in this photo shows her "you're not

going to make me get in the car again, are you?"

The Birthday Kid!

 Trying to get the first bite of frosting.  What a cute little bald head!

 Yes, he loved the bike!

He's not quite awake from his nap in this photo, but he's getting ready for the party.

All or at least a lot of his cousins are in this photo.

This was his "Blue's Clues" phase.  He has his notebook in his hand.  It was the first gift he opened and that was enough for him.  The other kids helped him out and opened the rest of his presents.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Huckleberry Scouting Trip

Today Jon and I drove up Lightning Creek Road to the Wellington Bridge and on up to our old Elk Camp to see if there are any huckleberries.

 Huckleberries are necessary for Huckleberry Pie, Huckleberry Cheesecake, Huckleberry Jam, Huckleberry Ice Cream............

This is what we found.  These little guys are still green.  They should be red and turning to dark purple.

We drove past the bridge and on up to our old elk campground to check there.  But it was the same.  Only little green berries and not many of them.

We did have a nice view of the snow on Scotchman's Peak on the way back.

This is the type of berries we are looking for.  These are in our driveway and I will pick them in a couple of days if Mollie doesn't eat all of them first.  She thinks this is her huckleberry patch.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Two Wildlife Biologists from the USFS, Linda and Laressa, visited us yesterday to see the

goshawks, but it was too late.  They have left the nest.  We are hoping the goshawks will 

return next year to the same nest or another in the same area.  The biologists did verify the 

GPS location of the nest and said that having a nest there protects a 40 acre area from being 

logged.  That suits me just fine.

Later today I have my guitar lesson along with the mandolin gals and the fiddle player.  I have 

been practicing every day hoping to improve. ......

Maybe if I talked less.....  never mind.

Speaking of the fiddle player, after our last jam session, she and her banjo husband taught us 

to play Mexican Train Dominoes.  It is addictive.  We were hooked after 3 games and I will be

 searching for a set at Walmart today.  I noticed on Kristine's Blog that she called the game "The 

Devil's Box".  She may be right.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Morning Coffee Views

Morning sunshine on my foxglove and delphiniums.

Pansy Bed

Flower Basket

I love waking up on summer mornings.  Birds singing, warm sunshine, beautiful views and my coffee.  No rush to do anything. 

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Kalispell Burkharts Going to the Sun

They finally were able to plow open the Going to the Sun Road at Glacier Park.  Melissa took some great photos.  It's the middle of July and look at that snow!

June 24, 2010 photo

 July 16, 2011 photo

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Music! So Much Fun!

Our fiddle player has joined us for the summer.  Her banjo playing husband is here too, but Rhode Island keeps calling him back.  He will join us again to play some tunes for the Oyster Party.  

We have been playing almost every day this week, which suits me just fine.  

She has joined us at our lesson and we are doing our best not to overwhelm our music teacher.  There are now four of us at the lesson, two mandolins, one fiddle and one guitar.  Our instructor is approaching it with a great sense of humor so far -- as for us, we are having a blast.  

Our band manager patiently advises and assists us whenever we need it.

He spends hours listening to us play, loading equipment, raising tents, unloading equipment, giving us his honest opinion which is something we really need.  Once in awhile we actually talk him into singing with us.  He has a really great voice.

Here we are playing into the night last summer.  I hope we have another night like this one.

Friday, July 15, 2011

Maggie's gift this morning

This morning Maggie presented us with this magnificent branch and bits of torn up aluminum foil.  She is so proud of her gifts.

Except for this one!  Icky.  For some reason she didn't want to take credit for this one.  We had no idea we had so many treasures underneath our deck.  Maybe this puppy wants to be an archaeologist. She appears to be digging for fossils.  I think Jon would call this one "an exotic".

Thursday, July 14, 2011

A few blossoms

My Clematis plant has two blossoms this year!  They are at least 4 inches in diameter.

 Pansies, so delicate.

Mid July Slow Down

Things have slowed down a bit which is a good thing if you are over 60.  Tuesday was guitar lesson with mandolin and fiddle this time and it was a lot of fun. We tried several new songs and will introduce them to the "full band" next jam session.  Our teacher tried to help us with our singing and teach us some harmony, but I've found I can only do one of two things, either sing or play the guitar.  Why can't I do both at once?   Bummer.  How do all those musicians on TV do it?  They sing and play at the same time...... 

Wednesday morning was Strength Training Class at the health club.  It was a rainy morning and not much else to do so I had no excuses.  Since I haven't been to class for three weeks I used up all the extra energy I had stored up.  I had several naps later in the day.  Played my guitar, a little keyboard, read the newspaper......  (I did give the puppy a bath and I was as wet as the puppy by the time we were finished.)  It makes sense, right?   Give your puppy a bath on the one day it is raining and there are mud puddles outside? 

I will say that Maggie is a lot of fun to play with when her coat is soft and clean.  It's like cuddling one of those velour blankets that has teeth.  She sleeps outside now and every morning we have a new gift on the front porch.  So far we've had a rug that looked like it had been left outside since 1999, several skulls, miscellaneous bones, and yesterday, a dahlia tuber.  There might be trouble in River City.

Wow!  My muscles are sore today!  I had big plans to be outside, roto-till the garden, pull some weeds and pick the strawberries.  Maybe I will play the guitar, a little keyboard, read the newspaper, take a nap.....

Monday, July 11, 2011

Stalking the Goshawk

Jon, Dylan and I spent about forty minutes hanging out below the nest and waiting for the mama Goshawk to go to the nest.  She wouldn't go for it.  She screeched at us for several minutes and flew over our heads, but did not try to attack us.  She sat at the very top of the pine tree and we finally gave up. 

I think you can just see the top of the baby's head in this photo.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Closing Down "the Zoo"?

 Missoula.  They call it "the zoo" because.........there are party animals?  it's a college town?  it's a wild west kind of circus?

On Thursday night the Reineke clan descended on the big city.  Griz Eileen, who is 87 years young, went with us everywhere and did not hesitate to participate in the activities.  We first went to Caras Park for the Thursday Night in the Park event.  They had live music and lots of food vendors with everything from Thai to New Orleans Red Beans and Rice to BBQ ribs.  The park is down by the river and it is a really nice setting.  They have built a covered stage for the bands and bleachers for spectators.  The band played some really nice blues tunes, but it was too loud.  They had eight speakers, each the size of my car!

I know this all sounds pretty simple and relaxed, but trying to get the group to make a decision about where we were going, when we were going, etc. was like trying to herd a bunch of sheep.  There was always one straying from the herd.  Where are Mollie and Maggie when I need them? 

We left that venue and headed for Al and Vic's Bar to shoot some pool.  Griz Eileen was pretty hot shooting pool.  I'm sure she was the oldest player in the place.  Then it was time for some barhopping so we headed to Charlie B's.  They serve food there, so of course, we had to try some.  It was a rockin' crowd there and once again, the music was too loud, but being a college town, everyone looked to be having a good time and enjoying it.  With all our gray hair we did our best to fit in. 

As we walked back to our car, we passed the Ironhorse Brew Pub.  They have a yellow warning sign there to watch for drunks crossing the street.  I'm sure it is needed after walking around the "zoo" for a couple of hours.  We headed home and left it to the young people to close the place down.  We found out later that Dylan and the rest of his firefighter crew took over for us and closed the place down around 3:00 a.m.  Don't tell his parents.

On Friday night we headed to the Missoula Osprey Baseball Game.  Their mascot has a nest across the field.  It was difficult to get a photo looking through the net and zooming across the field, but I took one anyway.

The Missoula Osprey won the game.  We ate popcorn and peanuts and cheered them on!  It was a great way to spend the evening.  There was no "closing down the zoo" on this day.  We needed more time for naps and lots of rest just to make it through the baseball game. Go figure!

Visit to Dragon Hollow

Ben gets to play at Dragon Hollow and for the first time gets to ride on the Carousel!  He wasn't too sure about all that going around in circles stuff!

He was smiling at the beginning of the ride, then sucking his thumb and by the end starting yelling, "enough, get me off this thing"!

When I asked him how he liked the ride, his response was quite serious, "Apparently my parents think it is fun to sit on a huge round thing and which spins in circles as fast as it can.  It must be some kind of test that they put little kids through.  They were so pleased that I didn't upchuck on the ride that they bought me this lollipop.  Grandma, I would not recommend it.  You could get dizzy and fall off."

The Firefighter Returns!

Dylan and the rest of his crew returned to Idaho on Friday.  They spent thirty days in Truth or Consequences, New Mexico.  He was very happy to be back in North Idaho!  He gets a couple of days rest and then he's back on the job here.

He returned with a new firefighter look!

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Honk Fest 2012 or Bust!

Our bass player told the group about Honk Fests.  He suggested that we go on tour with the band and thinks we would fit right in.  One should never make suggestions to the Cougar Creek Band as we decide to do some pretty crazy things. Who else would create a float and have a Mardi Gras parade when there is four feet of snow on the ground?  

We need one of these so that we can go on tour with the Honk Fest.  Honk Fest first began in Sommerville, MA in 2006 for community activist marching street bands.  Click here for more info on  Honk Fest.  The festivals are held throughout the U.S. so we have our choice of traveling to Seattle, Austin or back east to Sommerville, Boston or Providence, RI.

We will need a bus, something like this.

Or maybe we will need two or three buses?

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Chainsaw Contest 2011

Medium Saw- Travis won this event! Adam was the official timer.

Large Saw-Ty won this event!  Travis was 2 tenths of a second behind him!

The winners! Pat, Ty and Trav!

I have to say that the size of the log was a bit larger last year.  2010 contest photos.

We had heard rumors that Cassie was going to be in the contest, but she was a no-show.  Darn it!  That would have been very interesting to have a dad and daughter contest.  Maybe we can talk her into it next time.