Friday, July 26, 2013

Where is my doghouse?

 Maggie has been displaced by the porch project.  She does not like the location that her doghouse has been moved to.

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

And now, here on our stage tonight, for the very first time,

And, we know you are going to enjoy it. The exciting sounds of the



Hope Mountain Blues Band

  For 6 weeks we have been trying to come up with a name for our "gal band (& Neil)".  Luckily for us, we have a writer in the band.  Yesterday we practiced with Doug using our PA in the music room.  After the practice was finished,  Kristine walked us through the "how to pick a band name process".   We immediately threw out Nacho Mama. 

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

This is why we needed those strong footings and piers.

Here's the latest progress on our porch project.  The stairs will be added today.

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Rocking the boat!

I love construction and remodeling.  Poor Retired Mountain Man hates it.  He thinks everything is just fine like it is.  I, on the other hand, am always thinking of something that needs to be improved upon. 

It took me almost a year to convince Retired Mountain Man that we needed to put a roof over our front porch.  I have learned that it is necessary to "ease" him into remodeling projects.

This is the concrete pad for the bottom of the new stairs.

Jens is helping with the project.

The new concrete pad, footings and piers for the posts.

 I know.  I know.  It's a picture of a footing and a pier.  Keep in mind that these are two very crucial  components of the new porch. 

Let's see, the next remodeling project on the list is......... a garage?  a carport?  a roof over the deck?  a porch off the pantry?  an attached garage?.....  Retired Mountain Man will start to panic when he reads this. 

  I love rocking his boat!

Thursday, July 18, 2013

CSI Part One

These trophies mysteriously appeared in our basement band room last week.





I think the culprit may be linked to Thompson.......     It is an ongoing investigation.

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Dell Easy

 And it was still under warranty?  No way!

Yes, it's true!  ..... and this is the story.

On Sunday evening after our jam session and dinner, Retired Mountain Man sat down at his computer.  (You should know that he spends most of his time sitting at his computer and reading on the Internet.  He is on top of all "Breaking News" stories.)  But this time his computer would not start up.  It would try to power on and boot but would stop and just kept recycling.

It was getting late in the evening and I gave up troubleshooting the problem.

I said I would call Dell in the morning because, (and this is the unbelievable part) it was under warranty until August 25, 2013.   As you well know, every appliance or tech gadget fails one month AFTER the warranty expires.

We went to bed.

 Poor Retired Mountain Man was in a state!  He loves his computer.  He lives for his computer.  He woke up at 2:00 a.m. and started crying and asking me what was he going to do without it?

On Monday morning at 7:00 a.m. Pacific Time, I called Dell and went through all of the procedures to troubleshoot what part was not working on the computer.  It brought back memories of taking apart hundreds of computers at Sandpoint Middle School and putting them back together again.

Aleem, the very nice Dell technical support specialist, and I got to know each other.  I took out the video card, the memory sticks, and disconnected the hard drive and the DVD drive which meant it was either a defective power supply or it was the motherboard.

Aleem said both parts would be shipped to the technician nearest us (nearest us meaning Spokane, 92 miles away) and that it would take a couple of days to ship the parts.  The technician would call us and then come to our house to fix the computer.

 I hated to tell Retired Mountain Man that it was going to be several days before his computer was repaired, but I had no choice. He took it well, realizing that we do live out in the wilderness so to speak and you have to give up some things to do that.  Like, it takes at least a week to get anything repaired or delivered.

The next morning (TUESDAY) the Dell technician from Rathdrum, (only 57 miles), called to say he had our parts and asked what time would we like him to be there?  Wow!  Dell actually FedExed the parts overnight.

 Yes, he did get lost trying to find our house, but that happens to all repair people.  By 4:30 p.m. the computer was fixed.  It was the motherboard.

  All I can say is that it was just too easy. My good karma was in overdrive. The whole experience left me with a, "maybe I should buy a lottery ticket" kind of feeling.

Yes, absolutely.

 I could be a winner.

Saturday, July 13, 2013

We add some wood and we take away some wood......

Take a look at this beautiful pile of lumber.  Trav, Rod and Jon have been cutting it for a couple of days and Trav delivered it yesterday.  

In a few days our front porch will not look the same.   On Tuesday, Tim the carpenter and skilled craftsman (also known as Tim, the drummer), will begin our project by pouring the pad and building the new set of stairs.  

The view of our front porch will be very different by the Oyster Party.

While we were admiring our new pile of lumber, Thompson, our neighbors dog and our adopted Grand Dog, was stealing our firewood.  This is not uncommon.  
Every time Thompson comes over to visit, he steals a piece of firewood and takes it home.  He doesn't always make it all the way to his house with the wood, sometimes it's left on the trail between our two homes.

Caught in the act!

Off he goes with our wood!

Maggie makes a feeble attempt to keep him from taking it.  Thompson tells her he was here first and he is in charge.

Will we have enough firewood to keep warm this winter?  Only Thompson knows.  The neighbors will be warm though.  We may have to move in with them.

Friday, July 12, 2013

The present

I read a quote from Cindy today that I really like:  

'Today is a gift, that is why it is called The Present .'

I will be using my "present" by roto-tilling my garden and practicing music with the girls this afternoon.   A little bit of work and then some play. 

Whatever it is that you plan to do with your present, enjoy it.

Saturday, July 6, 2013

These guys are very good at "Running with Scissors" and also playing their guitars and drums.....

We spent a very enjoyable evening last night listening to these guys play at Trinity's in Sandpoint.  Retired Mountain Man tipped a quarter in the tip jar for every song he kind of liked and a dollar for the ones he really liked.  All I can say is that there was some really sweet guitar playing and they sang and played a lot of very nice tunes.  We had a great time!

Bruce, Tim and Tom

  I can't believe that I am actually going to have the opportunity to play with them! I don't think I will believe it until I am actually there setting up my keyboard. 

 Retired Mountain Man had a few gin and tonics and was cold.  That resulted in the wearing of his sister's pink jacket.  It scared quite a few people away from him.  We tried to trade him in for someone else, but were not successful and had to take him home with us.

Friday, July 5, 2013

Not our usual 4th of July Parade......

This year it seemed like it was the same old routine to get ready for the 4th of July parade in Clark Fork, but as you know, nothing is ever the same.  

The theme of the parade this year was Clark Fork History.  Our truck was decorated as the Clark Fork Ferry.  Our sax player, Mike, came up with the creative waves for the front and sides of the float.

 We decorated the float and the band practiced on the 3rd of July.  The morning of the 4th began as usual.  Mathis dressed in his costume (he was going to be running after the ferry with suitcase in hand, trying to catch a ride) setting off fireworks in the street.

 We had Second Line participants from Atlanta dressed in their 4th of July best!

At about 8:45 a.m. things began to change.  The inverter for the PA system would not work.  What is an inverter?   It is a DC to AC power inverter and we had to have one to have sound for the keyboard and the bass guitar.  

Mike said he had one back at his house so he got in his car and drove as fast as he could back to Hope.  

Mike returns with the inverter.
The electronic technicians worked frantically on the inverter problem.  On.  Off.  On. Off. Nope.

Pretty girls on their horses waiting in line.

The inverter didn't have enough power to run the PA so only my small keyboard speakers worked.  We had to go with what we had.

And now for the next change.  See the machine behind our float in the photo below, I think it's some kind of lift.  A young man walked up to our float driver and said he had a special favor to ask of us.  When we got to the corner of Hayes Chevron, would we please stop while he proposed to his girlfriend and then would we play a song.  Of course, we were happy to be part of the plan.

Notice that the sign says, "Go Wampus Cats"!

 Nina, it turns out, was sitting in a chair at the corner by Hayes Chevron.


 She said, "Yes"!

Mom ends up with the bike and the costume.  Where is the kid?

Later that afternoon, we went to the "Saw Contest" to watch Trav compete.  

This little guy thinks he did really well!  He was right!  He won!

The Cougar Creek Band and Scotchman's won too!  Best Adult Group in the parade.  Another trophy!