December 24, 2009
Twas the Night before Christmas
‘Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the house
Not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse;
The stockings were hung by the chimney with care,
In hopes that St. Nicholas soon would be there;
The children were nestled all snug in their beds,
While visions of sugar-plums danced in their heads;
And mamma in her ‘kerchief, and I in my cap,
Had just settled down for a long winter’s nap,
When out on the lawn there arose such a clatter,
I sprang from the bed to see what was the matter.
Away to the window I flew like a flash,
Tore open the shutters and threw up the sash.
The moon on the breast of the new-fallen snow
Gave the lustre of mid-day to objects below,
When, what to my wondering eyes should appear,
But a miniature sleigh, and eight tiny reindeer,
With a little old driver, so lively and quick,
I knew in a moment it must be St. Nick.
More rapid than eagles his coursers they came,
And he whistled, and shouted, and called them by name;
‘Now, DASHER! now, DANCER! now, PRANCER and VIXEN!
On, COMET! on CUPID! on, DONDER and BLITZEN!
To the top of the porch! to the top of the wall!
Now dash away! dash away! dash away all!
As dry leaves that before the wild hurricane fly,
When they meet with an obstacle, mount to the sky,
So up to the house-top the coursers they flew,
With the sleigh full of toys, and St. Nicholas too.
And then, in a twinkling, I heard on the roof
The prancing and pawing of each little hoof.
As I drew in my hand, and was turning around,
Down the chimney St. Nicholas came with a bound.
He was dressed all in fur, from his head to his foot,
And his clothes were all tarnished with ashes and soot;
A bundle of toys he had flung on his back,
And he looked like a peddler just opening his pack.
His eyes — how they twinkled! his dimples how merry!
His cheeks were like roses, his nose like a cherry!
His droll little mouth was drawn up like a bow,
And the beard of his chin was as white as the snow;
The stump of a pipe he held tight in his teeth,
And the smoke it encircled his head like a wreath;
He had a broad face and a little round belly,
That shook, when he laughed like a bowlful of jelly.
He was chubby and plump, a right jolly old elf,
And I laughed when I saw him, in spite of myself;
A wink of his eye and a twist of his head,
Soon gave me to know I had nothing to dread;
He spoke not a word, but went straight to his work,
And filled all the stockings; then turned with a jerk,
And laying his finger aside of his nose,
And giving a nod, up the chimney he rose;
He sprang to his sleigh, to his team gave a whistle,
And away they all flew like the down of a thistle.
But I heard him exclaim, ere he drove out of sight,
“HAPPY CHRISTMAS TO ALL, AND TO ALL A GOOD-NIGHT!”
by Major Henry Livingston Jr. (1748-1828)
November 24, 2009
By Peggy Schlichter
Update 2 – Well the computer is still in the shop. Seems to have a replicating trojan that is continuing to reappear every time they think it is gone. Norton did not catch it and spyhunter can not clear it. Am keeping my fingers crossed that they find the solution soon.
Update – Well I finally got the computer to the shop. Do not expect to get it back until Friday at the earliest. Hope everyone had a good holiday.
It is the time of year when we look around and give thanks for all the good in our lives.
All in all it was a pretty good year. All the family health problems have resolved themselves. Everyone seems to be in good spirits and looking forward to the holidays. I have had the pleasure of reconnecting with several old army friends this year. Some I have not seen in 30 years. Yep things are pretty good this holiday season.
So I guess in the grand scheme of things having my computer crash last night is just a small bump in the road. I have come to he conclusion that Norton is not all it is cracked up to be. Every time I have had trouble with the computer it is because Norton says it needs to fix something. So I tell it okay fix it and it breaks something else that I cannot repair myself. There goes another $100 just so the repair guys can run their “Fix What Norton Broke Disc”. Have decided to not worry about it until after the Thanksgiving holiday is over. I do not have time to get it to Des Moines today or tomorrow anyway.
Will check the blog whenever I get next to a family computer until mine is back up and running again.
Enjoy the holiday everyone.
June 30, 2009
By Peggy Schlichter
That I could never be an animal control officer. Why? It is quite simple. I would end up in jail the first week. Why? For padlocking a 15 pound chain around the neck of the owner, staking him or her in their back yard with no food or water, covering them with fleas and ticks and walking away. When caught my excuse could be that I checked on them a couple of days ago and they were fine. I really need to quit watching Animal Cops.
That Transformers II has more plot inconsistencies than I can count but I still liked the entertainment. There is something about the whole transformer idea that just captivates my imagination.
That this is an idea I would probably never think of.
That this is not a fire alarm but I would surely bust out laughing if I ever walked into someones home and saw this.
That warning labels are getting to dumb for words. Like…
On a hair dryer – Do Not Use While Sleeping.
On Frozen Dinners – Serving Suggestion: Defrost
Product May Be Hot After Heating.
On An Iron – Do Not Iron Clothes On Body.
On A Sleep Aid – Warning My Cause Drowsiness.
On Peanuts – Warning May Contain Nuts.
That these are a couple of cool iceberg pictures.
And my final conclusion of the evening…..
That when ever the TV says they have breaking news be prepared to hear it repeated ad nauseam every 8 minutes for days.
June 20, 2009
By Peggy Schlichter
It goes without saying that I have a hate/hate relationship with my camera and its batteries. When I manage to take a picture they turn out pretty good. But when I manage to do something wrong which is just about every time I use it I lose pictures never to be recovered again. This year I managed to lose the first 16 pictures while changing the batteries and memory stick. Do I know how I managed this feat, of course not. Do I think it will happen again. Of course it will. For a camera that is suppose to be point and click it has more menus than the operating system on my computer.
Anyway, here are the parade pictures that I managed to get and a few from the park later in the day.
If you wish to see a larger view just click on the picture. Use the back button to return to the whole post.
June 14, 2009
By Peggy Schlichter
Sunday mornings have always been the part of the week that I look forward to the most. This morning I caught myself remembering the different Sunday morning rituals that developed and changed over the years. Having lived in so many different places over the last 37 years it amazes me how the rituals have changed and stayed the same.
Weekly brunches, barbeque’s, ball games, movie matinees and naps all factored in depending on where I was living and what sports I was involved with at the time. But the one enduring thing I always did no matter where I was living was sit down and read the Sunday paper. It seemed like that was the only day that I actually had time to sit still long enough to read the paper. I looked forward to that hour or so every week.
I quit reading the Sunday paper about 8 months ago after I realized that it was no longer enjoyable. The editorials were weak minded and biased, the funnies were barely so, the TV guide was printed so small that I needed cheaters along with my bifocals to decipher the shows and the size of the paper kept shrinking. All in all it was more irritating that enjoyable to read it so I just quit buying it.
That does not mean that I do not miss it though. I do every Sunday morning. I miss the smell of the ink, the smudged fingers and the tangible feel of turning the page. All of which you do not get from a mouse and screen. It just does not feel like a Sunday morning any more…..
I am happy to announce that I have not had a snake encounter since sweeping the one out of the house a while back. Knock wood it stays that way.
As always these are my thoughts and mine alone. Take from it what you will.
How about those markets? Here are my thoughts on what is going on in the markets the coming months and years.
The DJIA will continue to rise in a bear market rally to the 9000 to 9600 range. This is a very good place to get out of the market before the bear continues to march downward. I do not see it going any higher than that since the last leg down went considerably lower than the 7450 I previously thought. The next leg down will in all likely hood get to the 4000 level late this year or early next year. This is considerably lower than the 6000 level I initially thought would happen.
There is some disturbing news popping up about 401k’s being frozen from withdrawals. Especially if they are invested in commercial real estate. Now is the time to check yours out and make sure that you are still in charge of your money.
The oil market is going to be a killer to pocketbooks in the coming months and years. This rally is just about over. It should get to about the 75 to 77 dollar range before heading back to the 20 to 25 dollar range in the near term before climbing higher again. However in the out years it will go as high as 350 to 400 dollars a barrel. Not a pretty thing to think about. This climb in price will have nothing to do with scarcity or increasing demand. It will be the direct result of inflation. In the last year the Federal Reserve has doubled the money supply in circulation in the US. They will continue to do so in their attempt to stave off a depression. It will not work and climbing inflation will result. In effect the dollar will be worth less and less requiring more and more dollars to purchase the same amounts of goods. Manufacturers are sidestepping inflation now by packaging smaller amounts for the same price.
Gold will continue its way down. Now is not the time to believe that gold will hit a new high any time soon. It is in a bear market also. Look for it to go below the 680 level before a rebound. Remember that news is does not create trends. The trend is lower and will continue that way. The price of gold will slump along with the economy.
May 25, 2009
Soldier, rest! Thy warfare o’er,
Sleep the sleep that knows not breaking,
Dream of battled fields no more,
Days of danger, nights of waking.
by Sir Walter Scott
April 27, 2009
By Peggy Schlichter
There is nothing quite like sitting down at the computer to check emaill/news and see something out of the corner of your eye sliding across the dining room floor. Your first thought is did I really see what I think I did? Then it moves again. Yep I saw what I thought I did. A baby garter snake trying to hide behind the pedestal under the table.
So out comes the broom and the chase begins. It is a good thing that they sweep so easily. Getting it out of the dining room and through the kitchen was pretty easy. The back porch was something else.
If I had not been so lazy this weekend and carried all the stuff back out to the garage that I brought in for the winter so they would not freeze my evening would have been a little easier.
But no, that was not the case. The little bugger got away from me and started a rousing game of hide and seek amoungst the stuff on the back porch. Then the little sucker disappears. Poof, cannot find him anywhere.
Here I am moving everything around again hoping to see where he is. Nothing.
Just as I was giving up any hope of finding him and turned my thoughts to how am I going to block off the porch so he does not get back into the house I pick up a hose extension I apparently forgot to put up after vacuuming the basement stairs the other day. As I was leaning it up against the wall so I would not forget to put it up I notice that there is something stuck in it.
Yep there he was hiding in the extension. So out the door we go. Needless to say he was not as happy as I was but he is out and that is just fine with me.
I don’t know about you but it is way to early in the year to be chasing snakes out of the house for me. I guess that is what I get for leaving the back door open while bringing in the groceries this evening. Bet I don’t do that again anytime soon.
April 26, 2009
By Peggy Schlichter
I never knew if they had an official name. Never seen them reach 18″ to 2 feet in size. I remember seeing small ones occasionally about the size of a finger growing up here in Iowa or in Germany a few times over the years.
Here are some pictures from Idaho that show mother nature having fun. I wonder if they were the inspiration for the first person who made a snowman?
February 22, 2009
By Peggy Schlichter
Update – Looks like the Pops and I are headed home on Sunday. Dorothy is doing a lot better. The side effects of the medicine have abated to the point that she is getting back to her normal self again. She has gotten enough of her strength back to get on with the regular business of running the ranch. The calving is going smoothly with few complications. It has turned cold again for the next couple of days but the snow looks like it is going to miss this area. I should be back in time to get the agenda posted for the Monday council meeting. Not much else new here. See you tomorrow.
No kidding. It is 20 minutes of bounce your guts out prarie path to the road then 15 miles to the nearest town Brewster, population 22. No post office, no grocery store just a hunting store. From the road going north 35 miles is the nearest town with amenities.
After being here a week, to busy then to tired to listen to the news and not missing it, it seems like living in a different century.
The cows are getting ready to calf, the feeder calves are getting ready to go to the sale barn on tuesday and chores on a good day thake three hours with three people. Four hours with just dad and I.
Dorothy has been laid up with a fungal infection in the blood she picked up from hay mold. Then she had a reaction to the first medicine they put her on. Now she is on different medicine but still weak and sore from the enlarged lymph nodes all up her arm. The doctors say that it will take 3 to 6 months to get the infection cleared up. She has to go back to the doctor March 2 in Denver for her next checkup. Dad and I will be staying until she is well enough to take care of things on her own. Getting the calves off to the sale barn next week will cut down on the chores some but the 90 head of cows are ready to start calving any time now. Seems like we are just trading one chore for another.
It has been a lot of years and I had blissfully forgotten how hard ranch life can be.
Here is a picture of the deer we see almost daily around here. The snow in gone now but they still graze through the pasture.
This is what is about to start happening around here.
The caption of this picture is “Einspahr Ranch Homesteaded 1905”.
December 31, 2008
Good Morning 2009
My one and only resolution for this year………..
I am definitely going to start buying Lottery tickets at luckier stores.
What are yours?
December 23, 2008
The Spirit of Christmas
I have a list of people I know
All written in a book
And every year at Christmastime
I go and take a look
And that is when I realize
That those names are a part
Not of the book they are written in
But of my very heart
For each name stands for someone
Who has passed my path some time
And in that meeting they’ve become
A treasured friend of mine
And once you’ve met some people
The years cannot erase
The memory of a pleasant word
Or a friendly face
So when I send a Christmas card
That is addressed to you
It’s because you are on that list
Of folks I am indebted to
And you are one of many folk who
In times past I’ve met
And happen to be one of those
I don’t want to forget
And whether I have known you for
Many years or few
In some way you have a part in
Shaping things I do
This the spirit of Christmas, that
Forever and ever endures
May it leave its richest blessing
In the hearts of you and yours.