Sunday, February 28, 2010

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Hippo Birdies

Hippo birdies two ewes
Hippo birdies two ewes
Hippo birdies deer Token
Hippo birdies two ewes
..... and mini s'mores.....

The little guy is 5 today. We called Boulder Creek this afternoon to wish his sister, Goldie, hippo birdies and chat with her people, B & N (who are doing well). He has been enjoying the bones I fixed for his birthday celebration -- spending hours making sure he gets every bit of marrow and deliciousness outta every crack and crevice.

Thursday, February 25, 2010


Picked up an inch of rain from the last system that moved through. Today was the break between storms with another one coming in tonight. Gonna be windy so I need to bring in the bird feeder again but not so windy that I'm under a high wind advisory.

Tried to put on some mascara today. Alas, I need to get a magnifying mirror. I did ok with the upper lashes but trying to put mascara on my lower lashes -- mainly by feel -- made me realize this was an exercise in futility. I can't put on makeup while wearing my eyeglasses and the days of being able to do so without glasses are apparently long past. Gonna have to pick up a magnifying mirror next time I go to into town.

That inch of rain in the manual gauge brings the yearly rainfall total from October 1st to 46.27 inches.

Monday, February 22, 2010


No sun today in spite of what the weather dood said yesterday (laughing). The high clouds and then later arriving lower clouds completely blotted out any peaks of the sun by late afternoon and I had no color at sunset.

Rain should be here tomorrow -- probably about the time I head to the dentist for a recheck of the new lining in my upper plate. The new lining has made for a much tighter fit and less gagging. A very good thing. Got to drop off a box at the UPS store for shipping to Stephanie and then hurry back home in time to make my afternoon shift at FDL.

Had to tweak my work schedule because those forkers at ABC shifted Lost from my night off to Tuesday nights. Grrrrr. Thank goodness I work with a great buncha folks who knew that the only reason I wanted Wednesday nights off was so I could watch Lost. Tis my only must see network show (whew) so when the series is over (sad face) at the end of May, I can resume being a night owl and hanging around the dark side of the lake.


Another picture perfectly glorious sunny day today. Weather dood said to enjoy Monday (t'will be the 5th day in a row of said spectacular weather) because Tuesday the rains return -- and stay for a while.

Got up to 67 degrees Sunday and it is currently 34 out there. I think the nights will warm up when those rainclouds show up -- something Token and Bailey will enjoy when going out to take care of their business. The fire has kept us a toasty 71 inside. Token is snoozing on his pad next to the stove and Bailey cat is curled up in 'her' chair doing the same.

Saturday, February 20, 2010



followed by color

was the view out the livingroom windows today. Got up into the mid to high 60's today (!) but still quickly sliding down into the low 40's and high 30's during the evenings. The hired girls came today and lugged up wood then did a few chores before they headed off to the beach for the afternoon.

Trees are starting to get some leaf buds and I expect the rhododendrons' swollen flower buds to burst out in bloom any day.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Purple Haze

Bet you were thinking it was gonna be the Jimi song (laughing)

Tonight's sunset was very nice. Had high clouds that came in this afternoon that dulled the bright blue skies of the past few days -- was totally worth it to get a magnificent sunset with purple hues in the clouds.

Been using the manual rain gauge and realized I've not updated online. I picked up 3 inches of rainfall last week and another inch and one quarter earlier this week. No rain the past several days -- not even any drizzle! Adding 4.25 inches to the annual rainfall total bringing us to 45.27 inches since October 1st.

Speaking of Jimi....

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Mississippians Turn to Iran for Health Care Help

Barbara O'Brien has blogged at The Mahablog, Crooks and Liars, AlterNet, and elsewhere on the progressive political and health blogophere. I am honored to have her guest blogging today on Health Care in America.

Mississippians Turn to Iran for Health Care Help

Recently I wrote here that Mississippi has the worst health care in the nation. Now I want to tell the story about how desperate Mississippians, abandoned by their government, turned to Iran for help.

But first, I want to tell you about Mississippi’s infant mortality rate. The rate of infant mortality is the number of infants who are born alive but die before their first birthday, per 1,000 live births. In other words, if infant mortality is 5, that means that 5 of every 1,000 babies in that population will not survive the first year of life.

According to the CIA World Factbook, the estimated infant mortality rate in the United States for 2009 is 6.22, which is high for an industrialized democracy. But according to the U.S. Census Bureau, the infant mortality rate in Mississippi is 11.4. Only Florida is worse, at 14.1. By contrast, the infant mortality rate for Washington and Minnesota is 5.1.

Now, here’s where Iran comes in — according to the Times of London, last October “five top Iranian doctors, including a senior official at the health ministry in Tehran, were quietly brought to Mississippi” to advise Mississippians how to lower their infant mortality rate.

This exchange came about when James Miller, managing director of Oxford International Development Group, was consulting in a rural Mississippi hospital. “He was shocked to find that the state had the third highest medical expenditure per capita, but came last in terms of outcome,” the Times article said.

Miller remembered a conference presentation on how Iran radically lowered its infant mortality rates. Facing a shortage of doctors and hospitals, the government launched a program of “health houses” staffed by local people trained to be health workers. The health workers are authorized to provide basic medical services such as diabetes monitoring as well as prenatal and obstetric care. Infant and maternal mortality rates both fell dramatically as a result.

James Miller contacted Iranian doctors to find out if their program might be applied to Mississippi. So the Iranian doctors came to Mississippi to give advice. Although the idea of following an Iranian model was a hard sell in Mississippi, at least one community has begun work on an Iranian style “health house” to provide better care for pregnant women abandoned by Mississippi’s health care system.

Dr Aaron Shirley, who worked with James Miller on the Iranian project, admitted they were staying under the radar. Mississippi government officials, including Governor Haley Barbour, were not involved or informed.

This takes us back to the issue identified in the earlier post — Mississippi has the worst health care in the nation, but as far as Gov. Barbour is concerned, this is not a problem. The governor is perfectly clear, on his website and in public pronouncements, that Mississippi fixed its health care problems by passing a comprehensive tort reform bill in 2004. The 2004 law affected all kinds of personal injury lawsuits in Mississippi.

In the U.S., state after state has passed “tort reform” laws that make it harder for citizens to file personal injury suits and also limit the amount of damages they can receive. This is a critical issue for people with asbestos-related disease such as mesothelioma cancer, who so often need damage awards to care for themselves and their families. “Tort reform” also is being pushed by conservatives nationwide as the way to fix the nation’s health care crisis.

But Mississippi reformed tort in 2004, and it still has the worst health care in the nation. What did Governor Barbour “fix,” exactly?

-Barbara O’Brien

Wednesday, February 17, 2010


The first blooms in the yard are these daffs coming up in front of the house.

Sun is setting further and further north. Because I face southwest, my winter sunsets are just about done for the year.

Birds are back on the bay.

Some lovely color as the sun sets behind the trees.


Been watching the crab boats on the other side of the spit tonight. Usually the boat lights are solitary glows but tonight the boats have been in groups of two or three at a time.

Friday, February 12, 2010


Sun was trying to shine during a band of showers that was moving through this afternoon and lost. Twas the only bit of sunshine I got today.

Got stormy enough last night that the wind blew one of the adirondack chairs from the bayside deck into an empty ceramic pot I had against the railing by the stairs. Broke the pot but the chair is fine Musta been a strong gust from the south to move it clear across the deck to the north. Otherwise, we came through the high winds fine. Weather dood said the wind gusts got up to 53 at Cape Meares to my immediate north and to 63 up in Garibaldi -- at the mouth of Tillamook Bay.

Rain gauge says I only got 0.54 inches which has to be wrong -- that's what it was reading before this last system blew in. I'll go out tomorrow onto the back deck and see what the manual gauge is reading. Looks like I'll have to use that manual gauge for a while.

Am watching the tape delayed Winter Olympics. I'm only a wee bit more than 300 miles south of Vancouver but have to see it delayed because of NBC deciding it must be shown in 'prime time'. Bah humbug -- the Olympics should always be shown live and simulcast worldwide. I want to know I am watching this with millions of people from all over the world -- not just those in my time zone. Blergh.

(end of rant)

Back to watching the Winter Olumpics Opening Ceremony which I am enjoying very much. I'm even liking some of the Olympic specific ads shown during the limited commercial breaks. I had planned to be cleaning the kitchen tonight during the commercials but...

Surprisingly, I feel a real connection to these Games, knowing they are less than a day's drive away (and that I have a passport to get across the border). I plan on making a visit up that way this spring -- or maybe early summer so I'm getting a head's up on what sights to see. As evidenced by the opening shots of the coverage of the Opening Ceremony, the Pacific Northwest is forking gorgeous.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010


Token was the FDL FireDog of the day yesterday. I took this photo of him a year ago (on his 4th birthday). He had just gotten home from the doggie beauty salon and looked marvalous (and smelled pretty darn good too).

He will be 5 on the 27th of this month. He's my little guy and I can not imagine what my life would be like without him.

My rain gauge is on the fritz again. The storm that was supposed to blow in tonight arrived this morning. Under another high wind watch and the weather dood said this is a typical February storm. Been raining/drizzling with the wind gusts blowing it sideways most of the day. Have all my hatches battened down and Token, Bailey cat and I are set to enjoy our evening beside the fire.

Monday, February 08, 2010


This afternoon's sky has been wonderful. Bright blue with white puffy clouds and gray clouds and a foggy misty overcast -- all depending on when ya look at it. I took this a wee bit less than an hour before sunset -- those clouds along the horizon look pretty thick so I may not get much color tonight.

Haven't seen as much of the eagles this winter as I did last winter. Am hoping the spring-like temperatures will coax them out. Saw daffodils blooming alongside the road when I went into town today -- and my daffs in the big pot on the deck are up but have no flower heads yet.

My lemon thyme has survived the winter on the deck and is putting forth a lot of new growth. The other plants in the two herb planters are still looking pretty dormant or dead. My peony (which did not bloom last spring) is setting forth a lot of new growth -- am hoping moving it from the back deck to the front (bayside) deck will do the trick and it blooms this year. At the cottage by the creek in the redwoods, it wanted morning sun and shade during the afternoon -- the sun was so strong in CA that it would burn in the afternoon sun -- but it seems happier getting the softer afternoon sun up here.

Friday, February 05, 2010

More Gray

Another gray drizzly day followed by another gray sunset. Finally started to rain tonight (so far picked up a wee bit less than a quarter of an inch). Only time I went outside was to bring up some wood. Twas the perfect day to stay inside, letting time slip by starring out the window at life on the bay.

Wednesday, February 03, 2010

Blogroll Amnesty Day

Today is BAD -- and to celebrate I've added some new additions to the blogroll. Go take a look at the nightly ramblings of Sleep Talkin Man, Home Town Seeds (be sure to check out their Survival Seeds), Pygalgia, and the other sites listed over there on the left hand side.

Skippy is the blogfather who started this -- be sure to check out that first link for the history of B.A.D.

Tuesday, February 02, 2010


Had sunshine today when I left for the dentist's office for my recheck. By the time I got home, it was gray again and no color -- hell no sunset -- it just got dark. Picked up a total of 0.52 inches of rain over the past couple days. Total rainfall since October 1st is 41.02 inches.

Dr A said I am fully healed and to come back in next week and he will replace the liner in my plate. It has gotten looser as I've healed -- am looking forward to a snug fit with less of that glue stuff needed to hold it in place.

Otherwise, I got nada.