Monday, December 15, 2008


We've been sort of negligent lately about keeping this blog up to date, so here's a quick update.
We had a great Thanksgiving in California with Steve's parents and brothers. Kendra and her boyfriend Skot came too, and sister Diana and her husband Don drove in from Palm Desert to help us cheer on the Ducks in the Civil War game the day after Thanksgiving. It was a great game, with a final amazing score of 65-38!! It was a busy week, but great to be with so many of the family that we don't often see.

Steve left directly from Long Beach for Texas, and I came back home to work. Today I'm working at home as we got hit with snow and below freezing temperatures, and the roads are a mess. I have to say, teleconferences are a lot more tolerable when you can gaze out the window at the chickadees testing the strength of the ice on the pond, and the towhees digging in the snow for seeds. The snow is pretty, though not very thick. It never got above 28 today, but enough of it melted that we are expecting more ice on the roads tomorrow. I was feeling very jealous of the 70 degree temps they were having at the ranch, but today it's 35 there!

Monday, November 10, 2008


Whew.....what a game Saturday. As usual we had a great tailgate party even though it was "dampened" by the rain, the lack of Bill and Grayce, and the Edomites. Thank you Nelson's.

The win was GOOD, some of the playing was UGLY and IMHO the booing of our players was downright BAD. How quickly the fans have forgotten all those come back wins in the past and some of the truly bad losses. Masoli is a sophomore. He gives us the best chance to win right now and he is going to screw up. He will get better, he will make mistakes and he may lose some more games. The center made some mistakes, special teams were not special, and our D has had some lapses. Booing is acceptable for bad calls by the ref. and for bad sportsmanship.

I expected an 8-4 season this year based upon our lack of experience at QB. IMHO the Ducks are an average team the needs to win against a winning team to prove its meddle. The team has beaten all the bottom dwellers and needs to come through the next two game to be considered better than average. Will that happen? I don't know. I do know that I will be pulling for a win and unless this team gives up I will not boo them.


Monday, November 3, 2008

The November Ho Hums!

I've been remiss in not posting for a while. It is obvious the Oregon gray and rain has settled in after a very nice early fall. We have enjoyed the fall colors. The Ducks have impressed again with a great weekend at Arizona St. and then a disappointing loss at Cal. This team has yet to find it self. I am hesitant to predict how the remaining three games will turn out.

Thank God the political season is almost over. No matter how this election turns out we are in for another period of uncertainty and national stress. It is to bad that none of our politicians show true leadership and focus on what is good for the country as a whole, and not their party or special interest groups.

As November 11 approaches let's remember all those who have served our country and especially those who have made ultimate sacrifice for our country.


Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Susan Creek Falls, Trail and Campground

Our trip this past weekend was the perfect finale for the season! Good weather, beautiful fall colors, and great hiking trails. See the photos in the album for a few examples.

Steve and Molly left home on Wednesday so they could grab a good spot - and they were successful. We had a great view, and a nice big site with stone steps leading down to the river. The Susan Creek Falls campground has been lovingly supported since the early 1990's by Eagle Scout and Boy Scout troops from the Roseburg area. Over the years they've built really nice benches and railings at viewpoints all along the trail, and they've installed stone steps at several points leading down to the river. They've also contributed picnic benches and other efforts across the road at the Susan Creek Falls trail. Materials were donated by local building supply companies. What a great partnership! This is one of the nicest BLM campgrounds we've ever stayed at - they're usually pretty austere, but this one has nice showers, and really well maintained trails, and they are in the process of making several of the sites "accessible".

On Sunday we hiked to the falls, enjoying the ferns and deep woods along the way, and then continued up the steep hillside to the "Indian Mounds" - more properly called cairns, these piles of stones were supposedly made by Indian youth during their vision quest. The stone piles have been contained by chain link fencing for protection from souvenir hunters, which is probably a good thing, but makes photography a challenge.

The water level is fairly low this time of year, but the falls are still very pretty, and the fall colors are beautiful in that part of the mountains. The vine maple turns a beautiful cherry red, and the broad leaf maple are a brilliant yellow. The drive home was pretty too, and I stopped to take a few pictures at Colliding Rivers, in Glide. This is the site of a unique geologic phenomenon that causes the North Umpqua River and the Little River to meet head-on. The information center is housed in one of the picturesque 1930's ranger stations, known as "Uncle Sam's Cabins".

All in all it was a great weekend - though too short, as usual!

Monday, October 13, 2008


After watching saturdays game vs. ucla there are still way to many questions about this Duck team. Lack of consistency is the word. Fortunately Masoli was effective in running the ball and ucla is not a very good team. We shall see what happens in two weeks against ASU. Both teams have a bye this week so they both will get a chance to heal up and prepare for each other.

We had a great time with friends at the tailgate but we all dislike these late starts. We got set up at about 3:30 and didn't get to be until after 1: AM. Not a good thing for us old guys.

Speaking of old, I turned 59 yesterday......seems like yesterday I was 29 or 39 or 49......I can't remember which!!!!

Daph and I are planning my winter road trip to Texas. With the Oregon house not moving we are being selective as to what I will haul down. I will head down after Thanksgiving after a visit with my parents and Daph will maintain the Oregon home front while I deal with the Texas property. (I think I will be warmer).

Another week of sorting, packing stuff, mowing, and maybe taking a short camping trip. That is Whats UP! here.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008


The Duckies were not the only ones that got their rears kicked last week. We are all taking one in the stock market and I've reached political overload! I've made up my mind so leave me alone!!!!

Watched the game on Frank's big plasma last weekend and enjoyed the commentary by him and Pete.

This loss was not unexpected but the lack of any defense disappointed. Hopefully they can get it together for what is supposed to be a weak ucla team. At least we have the fun of disliking Newweasel for a week.

No action on the house and with the looks of things we are going to be staying put for some time.


Monday, September 29, 2008

Cascadia State Park

We're having one of those great Oregon Indian Summers - beautiful weather, warm and clear, just perfect for camping.

Our weekend was spent camping with friends in Cascadia State Park. This is an old park just off highway 20, established originally as a health spa called the Geisendorfer hotel. Built on Soda Creek, the spa took advantage of the supposed health-restoring properties of the mineralized water. When the hotel was closed the park was established, and it has that wonderful old-style feel, with really old trees, carefully constructed bridges and outbuildings, and large wooded campsites. All that's left of the hotel is a nice stone patio beside the creek.

On Saturday Daph and Grayce hiked to what is called Cascadia Cave. It's more of a rocky overhang than a cave, and filled with what our guide described as the highest concentration of petroglyphs in this quadrant of the state. Tony Farque (Archaeologist, Sweet Home Ranger District, Willamette NF)was at the site with a group from Portland State U. working on recording the glyphs. With them were Richard Archambault (AKA Painted Horse) and James Keyser (archeologist and rock art expert). We were given a very informative overview of the site, allowed to take photographs, and received "bear clan" pins from the ranger district. After a quick lunch Grayce and Daph hiked up to Soda Creek falls. Two hikes in one day seemed like a good idea at the time, but not really recommended for full-time desk jockeys!

Back in camp just in time for the game...The Ducks blew away the Washington State Cougars 63-14, and as Steve and Bill had spent the better part of two days locating the correct satellite alignment (quite a challenge with all those lovely old trees in the way) and stringing wire so we could watch the came, we really enjoyed that final score!

Monday, September 15, 2008

From Kendra on the Ike Evacuation

I have been working at one of the area shelters during the Ike Hurricane. I got called up at 130 am Friday morning, told to report at 6 am at Crockett High School. I worked 12 hours on Friday and another 12 on Saturday. I just found out today that I am on the list to possibly go work at one of the consolidated shelters during this week, but have not heard further.
I just wanted to send this out to you all, to let you know what it was like at these shelters, and what my observations were during my experience.

I arrived early Friday morning to find 609 evacuees from the Galveston area hungry, tired, cold, and very upset. They arrived at this shelter at 2 am Friday. There were no cots, no blankets, no pillows, and no food or water. I quered the Red Cross staff that was there as to why nothing is here to take care of these people. My response was "we're only supposed to provide a roof over their heads". Which would have been ok, if they had told the folks that when they got on the busses. They were told, leave you stuff, just get on the bus, we'll stop and get supplies on the way. Once on the road, they weren't allowed to stop. So they arrived with nothing.Now mind you, the people that took these busses, were people who had no other means of evacuating. Many of them were elderly with special needs/medical conditions, many were mentally handicapped, and many were on federal assistance. These people mainly had nothing when they left, and still have nothing to this day.

Friday was hell. We had a two level building, with the cafeteria on the second floor, and many people unable to get to the cafeteria to get food. I made up plates for all the people unable to get their food, and was told by Red Cross that they didn't want people eating in the gym to keep bugs down. I'm sorry, PEOPLE NEED TO EAT! Most people hadn't eaten since noon the previous day. Everyone stayed on the floor or in chairs all night with no blankets and were freezing. There was one drinking fountain for everyone to drink out of, but oh by the way, it wasn't working. There was no bottled water provided. We continued to ask Red Cross, the Emergency Operations Center, and FEMA for water, blankets and beds, and kept being told, its on its way. It never showed up. Finally in the afternoon, a citizen brought enough water for all the evacuees and we passed it out, while Red Cross yelled at us that we couldn't accept this donation. More on the Red Cross later.

On my shift we served all three meals, which was bare minimum food, but was at least something. We had a battle with the asst. principal of the school as well. School was in session, but was getting out at 3 pm. He wanted us to LOCK in all the evacuees from 8 am to 3 pm. We told him no, we couldn't and wouldn't do that, and he flipped his lid. Luckily I had APD officers backing me up. He eventually just went away and we did our own thing.

Saturday I showed up and things were pretty much the same. We had asked repetedly for EMS to come evaulate people to move people with special needs and medical needs to the Convention Center which was set up for those folks. They never showed up Friday, and finally arrived Saturday, after we had already had 3 people run out of oxygen in their tanks, people go to the bathroom in their pants because we couldn't get them upstairs to the bathroom in time, a heart attack, pnemonia, and a grand maul seizure. Luckily for the seizure, Chief Acevedo (APD) was there talking to myself and an officer when the guy grabbed onto me and started seizing. He was able to see the type of people in our care and that this was not an appropriate place for them. When I left Saturday evening we had 480 evacuees (30 over capacity) and still had approx. 100 people that needed to have special care.

Problems with this evacuation:
City of Austin, Red Cross, and FEMA KNEW how many people would be evacuating into austin days before it happened. Supplies were not stockpiled at the shelters in advance and no help was sought for additional supplies they did not have.
Evacuees were LIED TO when evacuated, when told they would get supplies along the way.
Red Cross repeatedly refused donations at the sites, saying they couldn't accept donations, only money, which they didn't want at that time either. The Officers and myself and other city of Austin volunteers have to sneak donations in to people.
FEMA would not offer any assistance until AFTER the storm had passed. Not even to evacuees that were safe.
The Media was kicked off of shelter property in an effort to control the information that was being released, thus hindering donations further.
Evacuees were not property screened for medical/special needs conditions, parole status, or sex offender status.

I found out today that the Convention Center had beds for 1000 evacuees with special needs, and as of Saturday evening only 87 people were there.I will be continuing to help throughout the week. Many wonderful citizens have come forward to give donations. Many were turned away by the Red Cross, but we tried to take as many donations as possible.

You can decide for yourself, but I will NEVER volunteer with the Red Cross or donate money or items to them EVER AGAIN. If you pray, please pray for the people of Galveston and surrounding cities. If you don't, please spread the word. And please remember the only true way of helping people in this situation is by being there with them, because otherwise, the help will not get to them.

Thanks for listening to my rant! Kendra


What can I say. This was like the Ducks of old. Take it to the brink of disaster and come back and win it in the end. It's enough to drive you to drink (more beer). It is too bad about Roper but we have at least played the two back-ups.

Interesting weekend for football. USC is obviously the powerhouse the experts say that they are. What a monster. Even though it was a PAC 10 loss it was good to see Newweasal get his butt handed to him. (ha ha!)

Coming up next is Boise St. I'm glad we have them at home. I've always had this game marked as a potential loss but they have to play the game.
Looking forward to tailgating this weekend. Jim and Kelly are staying over and we will be having Mexican food. John's burritos are the best.

Kendra had a very frustrating and interesting weekend working in a shelter for Galveston evacuee's. The storm totally missed us.

Have a great week!

Thursday, September 11, 2008

The "Tweeners"

Most of this will never forget this day seven years ago. The event changed history for our country, the world and all of us individually. After the shock of the attack of 9/11 I recall vividly how this country and we individually came together. Unfortunately that has changed and I hope it doesn't take another attack to bring us back together again. I recall the first Oregon game after 09/11 and how respectful everyone was of each other and the country.

The DUCKS have played the first two games in a dominate fashion and go on the road Saturday to play a mysterious Purdue team. Up to now we don't know how good the DUCKS are so hopefully this Saturday we will have a good idea. Game will be on ABC at 12:30 PST.

The last two tailgates have been great! Heidi, Ryan and the kids are doing a great job. The turnout has been good and we are keep John D. healthy with Vitamin water and Coors. Check out the slide show on the right side of the blog.

On a personal note we are not getting any action on the house and I have reconciled myself with the fact that it may not sell this listing. The housing and loan industries are in total shambles and it will take time to get back on track. We are bummed about this and want to "get the show on the road" but we can't change what we can't control.

Hurricane Ike is barreling towards the Central Texas coast. It will be a tropical storm by the time it hits our area but if the track predictions hold we will be the best position we can be in despite the circumstances. Kendra is getting prepared to hunker down with friends and Skot's family who live on the coast. They plan on evacuating inland.

So here we are "tween" football games, the house sale and move, storms, civility, and hopefully not another event like 9/11.


Friday, August 29, 2008


Kickoff for the 2008 season is tomorrow evening. This is the start of a new era for us as we will no longer be hosting a tailgate at Autzen. Dang, I don't have to spend 2-3 hours getting the equipment ready, shopping, and lining up hours before the game........Retirement is good.

Frankly I am going to miss it. We have enjoyed the friendships with all the fellow Duck fans that have developed since 1990. I haven't missed a game since the 1994 season. Our daughter was raised on Duck Football. We have had many notable moments and have witnessed the joy of winning most of the time and have endured the agony of defeat on occasion.Many thanks to all of those who have come, supplied food and drink, and helped in the past. I specifically want to thank John and Chris for their setup support, Jeannie for her outstanding work as the tailgate mom, Jim and Kelly, and Tom for their donation of parking pass. These folks truly made it happen. Lastly I want to thank, the wife, Daph for supporting my eccentric behavior.

My final salute goes to Heidi and Ryan as they take over the responsiblity of tailgating. I am looking forward to supporting them and participating in the new era of Duck football. See ya all there!!!!

GO DUCKS! BEAT THE dawgs (spit)!!!!!!!!!

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Tailgate Training Camp Success!


We had a very educational, successful, and well attended Tailgate Camp last weekend. The camp is located at the Ochoco Group Camp east of Prineville.

Attendees were Bill and Grayce, Jim and Kelly "Big Duck", John and Chris, Larry and Daphne, "newbies" Mike and Sally and Dave and Angela.

Bill, as usual, did a great job of organizing the event and everyone provided great food for our consumption.

This get together is an eight year tradition that is the start of our Oregon Tailgate football season.

Check out the photo's on the right side of this page, down in the slide shows section.

Monday, August 11, 2008

Monday Musings

Dang, almost half way through August. It is getting busier as we prepare for the annual "Tailgate Training Camp" with good friends over in the Ochoco's and football season kicks off in just 19 days. Where does the time go?

For Camp I am smoking Texas Country Style Pork Ribs and preparing a dish of Texas Caviar. Daph is going to make potato salad, cole slaw, and some evil desert. We always eat well.

No action on the house. The street flyer's keep disappearing. We had one looker last week who still needed to list their house. They really liked the place but who knows? Though we would like to get on with our plans we don't have to sell. There are worse places to be "stuck".

I don't know what to make of this Retirement gig. I have no problem staying busy. I don't know how I had time to work. It seems that I am going 7 days a week and don't have a day off......LOL!

We will give an update on training camp next week.


Friday, August 8, 2008

California fires

The sky over the last few days has been filled with smoke, and we thought it was due to the typical field burning, but heard on the radio this morning that it's due to the California fires. The Siskiyou complex has been burning since the end of June, and is only one of many wildfires in the area. Oregon sent a number of firefighters to assist. A helicopter crash on 8/6 resulted in the deaths of eight firefighters from Southern Oregon. These wildfires take a terrible tole on the firefighting community. If you're interested in more information on fires anywhere in California here's a nice selection of maps at the CalFire website.

Monday, August 4, 2008

The Blog World

Daph has opened the world of blogging to me. I enjoy keeping up with several area's of interest involving this venue but I never really thought I would participate. What I find interesting about this is the ability to consolidate one's interest an resources with others at a single location. I look at it as a quick way to keep others advised as to what is up, what has happened and to document shared experiences.

I don't expect to start pontificating about politics and other other subjects as my ego is such I don't think to many others care what I think.

I hope folks look at this as I do......... A way of sharing things we enjoy on electronic media, our interests and your input as to what we do.


Thursday, July 31, 2008

Too good to pass up

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Real estate and the state of things

Well interest seems to be picking up on the house. We've shown it several times and the fliers are really going, but so far no serious offers. You can see for yourself that this property has quite a lot going for it, and it's not a bad place to be "stuck" if it doesn't sell quickly. Oregon property has dropped a little in price but we're still holding up better than many other states. This is one of the most desirable parts of the country to live in, so it's not surprising, but it is harder to find buyers when they can't sell their existing homes for enough to cover property prices here.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008


After arriving in Lexington 3 hours late (1:30 A.M.) and feeling a bit battered I was delighted to see my experiences, and the current status of "customer service" in the airline industry had been fully and accurately documented by Carol Burnett and her pals several years ago. That video clip is the first featured on one of Kim Komando's video of the day pages. The second clip features what I think was was the airline I flew to Kentucky!

Travel update

July 1 - If you are looking for a five star resort and room service – this isn’t it. If you like rim rock, wild horses, bird watching, wild flowers, and absolute peace and quite, then this is the place. An oasis in the middle of some very dry desert, Ram Horn ( also called Ramhorn) has been described by folks we’ve met while camping there as "heaven". It all depends on what you’re looking for I guess!

At any rate, we enjoyed our two full days there, and as usual met some interesting folks. The campground has never had more than 2 or 3 inhabitants when we were there, but we heard from the BLM worker that at least one weekend in May it was so full he couldn’t drive through the campground! This time we met a couple who arrived late one afternoon with a truck and SUV full of young girls, whom they dropped off up the canyon and then drove back to the camp to wait for. Intrigued we had to ask…."is this a field trip or what?" Turns out they run a group home for troubled girls and the experience of walking and observing in the canyon is one of the experiences they plan for every group of girls they’ve had. They’ve been doing emergency housing, foster care and group home services since 1980. An amazing couple!

As usual Daph took way too many photos of wildflowers – you’d think she’d never seen them before! Steve was the one with sharp eyes that noticed all the scolding we were getting was caused by placing our lawn chairs too close to a wren’s nest in one of the trees at the edge of our site. By moving about 10 ft. further away we seemed to reassure the folks, as soon both mom and dad sat on the rocks that anchored our outdoor carpet and looked us over. ‘Guess we passed inspection as they stopped screaming at us and went back to feeding the kids.

A short drive up the road, heading east toward the Nevada state line, we encountered a small heard of wild horses... picturesque as they raced across the hill tops. When they saw our truck they worked their way down to the road. They were tame enough to come close, hoping for a handout I suspect!

There's something about the geography of this area that attracts thunderstorms. We've often encountered them here, and even if there's no storm, the clouds produce amazing sunsets. 

Here's a short slide show - representative of the area but not enough to bore you I hope!

We left Ram Horn for a brief visit with long-time friends Nick and Sue in the Highlands above Virginia City. We had a great time catching up, watching the local herd of wild horses, and checking out their place (they’ve only been in the house about a year). Then it was on to Fish Springs for the annual Happy Birthday America BBQ. High fuel prices and family obligations resulted in a smaller than usual crowd this year, but that didn’t dim our enjoyment. The three days there seemed too short, but we had to head home so Daph could hop on a plane for a meeting in Kentucky.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Up-comming trip

We're busy planning our next outing, the annual BBQ at the Finch's is the final destination, but we'll be taking a little R&R along the way. After all the really chilly and wet weather here in Oregon we're looking forward to a little dry and warmth, so plan to spend a bit of time at our favorite rustic campground, Ramhorn. It's east of Susanville, almost in Nevada, and WAY out of the way for most folks. Here's a great photo someone else has posted of the campground in early morning. They're actually in our favorite spot.... right next to the little creek. I'll post some photos of this trip when we return. This page has information about the area a two different views of the campground.