Thursday, April 30, 2009

Sweetest Baby Girl

Dec. 26, 1995 to April 30, 2009
My sweetest baby girl
The best cuddler
Loved to sit on laps
Kept everybody else in the house in line
I loved her very much

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Garden Update

Okay, good news and bad news with the garden progress. First the bad news. I only planted about 16 stalks of corn. I didn't have much room, but wanted a little and it was supposed to be good shade for the other plants. I planted it over the back side of the raised beds where we had dumped the extra mulch. It came up great. But for some reason my dogs and cats think it's great to eat the corn. I am down to about 8 stalks and they aren't looking so hot as you can kind of tell in this photo. At the back, against the planter is my black eyed peas. They seem to be doing ok and the animals don't seem to care about them. The lettuce is only just barely coming up. It's in the shade along the fence, was planted late, and I'm just not sure much is going to happen there. The next area of concern is the beans. They came up great, but the cats keep eating on them too and they don't seem to be getting very far. Sigh.

It looks like I can grow radishes pretty good though. I've been harvesting them the last week or so and I think they are almost all done.
I've got Roma, Early Girl and Lemon Boy tomatoes all set. All my tomatoes look pretty healthy. My tomatillo is flowering like crazy but not setting any fruit yet. I read some articles about it and I'm not giving up hope yet. It seems like my plant is performing like a lot of others.
My melons and squash are mostly doing ok. I think some plants are getting more water than they want and others maybe not enough. In the foreground there, you can see my zucchini and yellow squash seem to be blooming pretty well. My carrots still look a bit on the wimpy side. All is not equal in the melon patch. Some are going pretty well, while others are sadly lagging. One cucumber seems to have given up the ghost. On the other hand, I have at least one Bell Pepper, Jalapeno and anaheim pepper set.
And my Lemon and Peach trees seem very happy in their pots. So we'll see how we continue to progress! It's gettin awfully hot and that has me a bit nervous.

White Water Rafting

I did it! One of the things I always thought I wanted to do was go white water rafting. On April 18th, Penny and I went down the Salt River on a day trip with Wilderness Aware. Here we are getting suited up! I can't seem to get this photo turned the right way. So turn your head to the left. I DID NOT keep the hat on. I was had brought it to protect me from sunburn, but they made us where helmets and then I had the whole sunbonnet effect gong on, with the brim pushed around my face. Penny, for some reason, tried to talk me into leaving it on, but I was not going to look that stupid, plus I couldn't see past the silly rim. That is lots of layers there. And they adjust the life jackets so tight you can hardly breath. It's because if you fall in, they grab them and use them to hoist you back in the boat.

All right, I got it right side up and now can't get rid of the sideways photo. Sorry.
Ok and then we have a photo of Penny. Missing a little of the top of her head. She couldn't stand how tight the life jacket was and kept undoing the top of it when she could.

There were 71 of us that day, in 11 boats. Penny and I were in a raft with 4 other ladies near our age and our guide Glen. We really liked Glen. I don't know if it was just that he had white hair and had been a guide for 31 years, but he seemed a little calmer than some of the crazy kids and inspired confidence.

What kind of life is being a guide though? They live for the couple of months they are on the Salt, in tents. No running water, outhouses, no electricity. Ugh, is what we thought. And he goes from river to river through the summer. He teaches at a couple of schools, how to be a guide. I guess you have to really love what you are doing and not mind not having any kind of security, health insurance or 401K.

Because Glen was the trip leader, we brought up the rear and he kind of oversaw the whole trip. There was one class 4 rapid, several 3's, 2's and ones. We actively participated and were instructed what commands he would give us and how to row, etc. This photo is of our very first rapid. There is more of a drop than it looks and it's called kiss the rock, because that's just about what you do. The River actually takes a 90 degree turn to the left right there.

It was a beautiful day and we had very congenial company. The other ladies got us going on a spirited version of "Proud Mary" and we all had to stop and look at the one lady when she broke into her Tina Turner mode. It was a hoot. We had some beautiful scenery. I fell once, into the bottom of the boat, thank goodness and not out of the boat. They give you a whole safety talk about what to do if you fall in and how to rescue yourself and others. One lady, in a boat right ahead of us, did fall in on the class 4 rapid. I found it rather anxiety producing. I think because I deal with people who get hurt everyday, I don't have this unrealistic view that everything is going to be ok. Instead, I was very fearful that she was going to be hurt or killed. She was neither, and was fine, but I didn't like the way the anxiety made me feel.

We were pretty much wet from the waist down all day. The water was only 45 degrees, but because it was a nice day, it really wasn't too bad. They made us a nice fajita lunch at the camp where all the guides live. I bet they get sick of it. They make the exact same lunch every day they have a tour. They have it down to a science, but the poor guides do everything, safety lecture, sign you in, guide you down the river, cook lunch, serve it up, clean it up and at the end of the day, drag all the rafts up hill and on top of a dilapidated school bus. Then drive you 10 miles back up river to where you started, collect all the equipment back up again. I really think they earn the best tip you are able to give.

This Saturday is the last day of their season this year on the Salt and then they are all going away until next year. I had a great time and I'm glad I did it. I would love to go down the Grand Canyon on a raft, just because I've always wanted to, but I don't think I am much of a thrill seeker and likely won't seek it out other than that. I have to say, it wasn't really very rough, it always looks like it is in photos, but it wasn't .