Friday, October 7, 2016

Hurricane Matthew

It's October 6th, and our first Autumn in Florida. We are expecting our first hurricane, and of course, it's the biggest they have seen in decades, it's building, and could possibly go from a 4 to a 5.

I am somewhat scared as I have seen news reports of what these hurricanes can do, and the devastation they bring. But, I'm also a little bit excited. I'm hoping to get video of it as it approaches and builds in intensity.

We were out getting gas a little while ago, for the generator and the car. If we lose power, we will have the generator, and if it gets bad, we can leave.

While we were there, the rain and wind started. There is a lull right now, but it's due to start picking up again in a couple of hours. It's supposed to get above 50 by 1 a.m. I don't think we'll be getting much sleep tonight.

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Last beach trip in Washington (6/2015)

Last week the weather started to get hot. Here in the PNW, humidity often accompanies heat. So, since it was a weekend, what could be better than loading up the truck with sodas and dogs, and heading to the beach! It got up to 93º locally, but I don't think it got above 80º at the coast. What surprised met too, was that there were several degrees of difference between the actual beach, and the area before getting to the beach, on the other side of the dunes.

The dogs love these trips, but this was especially nice since Scruff also had some fun. The boat launch where we had been taking them, has very little room for her to run, and the launch area is covered with oyster shells which tear their feet up if they spend much time on them. The beach on the other hand, was just fabulous.

While it looks like the beach is empty, there were quite a few people there. I think they stayed out of our way though - these dogs are BIG and boisterous, and Kevin was really throwing that ball some distance!

Monday, June 22, 2015

Tightening the Belt.

Almost three months ago, Kevin lost his contract, which meant that until he had another job, money would be a little tight. So, this meant tightening the belt. For the past 20+ years, I haven't really budgeted money; if I wanted something, I could usually afford to go and get it (except of course major things like vehicles).

I remember my mom, she used to keep a purse in a drawer, with her "housekeeping" money in it. She put in the amount she had for each week and when it was gone, that was it. If there was any left over, it was "hers" and she could either save or spend it. Well, I wasn't going to do it that way, instead I made a "PLAN". I would limit my grocery spending each week. If I ran out, we would do without. It has been almost three months, and so far, I have been under budget each week. Kevin told me that our Discover card bill is down to "half" of what it has been in the past. That to me is pretty awesome.

Some of it has been really easy though. We have several freezers full of meat, so most of the groceries are for fresh vegetables and fruits. We have cut out the "premium" wines. I don't throw away left overs. I have also noticed that our trash bins are now only half full each week (less waste). I have changed the way I cook, and the types of food we eat, without sacrificing quality. For example, last night was very simple; a salad and a meat pie. But a really tasty pie, made with homemade duck and chicken stock, with lots of duck and chicken meat (left over from meals a few days ago) and vegetables, in a crisp, home made pastry. A tight budget doesn't have to mean Ramen and popcorn!


Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Blasphemy

Most of us are aware of the terrible incident in France recently, the massacre at Charlie Hebdo. I was horrified, as probably were many (non Muslims) around the world. It did make me stop and think though. I have become accustomed to free thought and speech, so the condemnation from the muslim community is anathema to me. I'm not religious, but I certainly have nothing against those who are, UNTIL and unless they try to force their ideas and way of life on me. I believe in live and let live.

There are caveats to my "live and let live" attitude however. Those beliefs, cults,or religions, that promote hatred, pedophilia, misogyny or death I do not tolerate. Islam is one of those religions. They say we have insulted their prophet when we make pictures or cartoons of him, yet we have insulted him in a far greater manner just because we have a law against pedophilia in the U.S. Since it is a criminal offense, then it stands to reason we have stated the prophet is also a criminal.

I don't think our laws are going to change just so that we don't insult Islam. So to all Muslims I say "Since you have chosen to incarcerate, torture and murder, in the name of your prophet and religion, I have no respect for you or him".