Of chickens, tractors, and butterflies

August 15, 2018

I was late for my visit with Dad yesterday but once I got there
we laughed almost the entire time. A couple of the highlights
were him explaining that when farmers got their first tractors
they would get to end of the field, yell “whoa” and run into a
creek or the ditch; the other was one time grandpa bought a
truckload of 2-week-old chickens.

According to Dad the farmers were so used to horses they
forgot to stop the tractors and started to panic when the
voice command didn’t stop the tractor.

The farm wasn’t set up for tiny chickens so Grandpa put all
the chicks in a spare bedroom of the farmhouse and told Grandma
not to open the door. Of course she didn’t listen, the chicks
made a break for freedom, and hours were spent rounding them all
up and getting them back in the room.

When I got back home after the visit, butterflies were all over
the neighborhood. Mostly Monarchs yet with a couple of dozen
flying around only one sat long enough to snap decent pictures.
I’m still working of getting pictures of them in flight but
these critters have no flight pattern that I could find.

Today we get rain and we need it. That may sound odd to those
experiencing flooding but it’s the truth. Things have dried out
some here on the east coast of Iowa and the weeds need some
water so they can pester us anew. It’s natures cycle of life.

So Enjoy our Wednesday, AKA the middle of the work week. Now I
need more coffee and a thick bacon sandwich.
Comments are always welcome.


Getting there

August 14, 2018

Between getting some chores done yesterday I glanced up and
noticed the spider who likes to make a web between the phone
lines at a nearby house was at it again. Must be a determined
little bugger.

Later today I will cruise over to Dads for a visit and to
bring him a refill on his store-bought doughnuts. When I called
yesterday he sounded like the phone had wakened him from one of
his naps and hope he remembers I’ll be late today.

We’ll see how things go when we visit but believe he is still
pretty sharp and can trip you up if you’re not careful. At 93
he isn’t feeble and still doesn’t use his cane very often to get

And of course we’re getting ready for the lady who follows me
around vacation time to arrive later this month. We’ll pack too
much into the trunk of the Fusion and see what there is to see
as we head to Oklahoma. I haven’t been there in years but doubt
they moved it.

All this started, as I knew it would, when the wife talked me
into going to Florida 20 years ago on a “family vacation” and I
knew then that it wouldn’t be a one-shot deal. Before then a
vacation was the farthest thing from my mind and still is.

The one difference between the first time and this time is that
I will not be driving under protest as I did then. It ended up
being a decent trip and perhaps this one will too.

Finally, we didn’t get any pictures of the meteor showers as
the smoke from the wildfires out west made things just hazy
enough to blur the shots. We’re told it has enabled some to get
great sunset shots though.

Enjoy our Tuesday as it’s one of those that doesn’t have an “r”
in it. Now I need some coffee and a couple of breakfast burritos.
Comments are always welcome.

Winding down the weekend

August 12, 2018

Yesterday the lady who follows me around and myself cruised
about 80 north to a city you can see three states from yet we
didn’t go up the elevator to look. We went shopping for some
needed things for our upcoming trip before having lunch at a
local eatery.

We managed to get what we needed and some things we didn’t and
called the cruise a success. And that got me thinking about
spiders. Not my favorite subject but sometimes it is amazing to
watch them build a web.

I must have spent an hour watching this industrious creature
double the size of her web. So naturally I took some pictures
and decided to share them here. From what little I know about
these creatures I believe they are beneficial when outside and
not much of a bother inside as a rule.

Hard to believe more Horror Films aren’t made with these strange
looking critters. As far as being scary to me, they are not.
I’m not sure how I’d feel about jumping spiders if I was caught
unawares they are in a separate category. As long as they don’t
get as big as brown bears I’ll leave them alone.

The lawn was going to get mowed today until I decide to wait
until tomorrow. Since this web goes from the grass to the bushes
I’ll tell the spider it has another day before moving on as I
don’t feel like mowing around the web.

Enjoy our Sunday as it’s the last one we get this week while
Monday is only a dream away. And now, I need more coffee.
Comments are always welcome.

What would it be like

August 10, 2018

This little critter was out to greet us this morning when we
got back from getting our groceries. One we call mama cat cut
him off at the pass as she must have thought she needed more

Yesterday we spied the butterfly and thought it looked like a
selfie was in order. After resizing the picture I noticed there
was also a fly on a leaf to the left of the butterfly. I don’t
think either will mind being in the same shot.

Little did I know that this picture would keep me up half the
night. You may wonder how a simple picture could cause a
sleepless night and I’ll try to explain.

After getting the pictures on the computer and sizing them to
make uploading faster I noticed how small the fly was next
to the larger butterfly. Almost like going to an air show and
seeing a Douglas Dauntless next to a C-130.

And that got me wondering what would it be like if the fly was
as big as the butterfly and the butterfly was the size of the
fly. Some flies are noisy enough at their current size but I
imagined the buzzing if they were 10 times larger than their
current size.

Of course the colorful butterfly would be harder to photograph
if they were as small as a fly. Which caused me to wonder if the
fly would become more aggressive in a larger body or stay the
same noisy pest as the original size version. About this time a
glance of the clock told me it was 03:30 and we get to the
grocery store at 07:00.

Enjoy our Friday as it means the weekend is here. Now I need
a lot more coffee to stay awake.
Comments are always welcome.

The visit

August 7, 2018

Had another visit with Dad this morning and it was a good one.
He had just gotten up when I got there so when the caregiver
asked if I could take a look at his shower seat and fix it, we
did. Ended up a suction cup on one end came out and see couldn’t
get it back on. He’s ready for a shower now.

That done we talked of past jobs and some of the cars we had
and what we liked about them. I was surprised to learn he worked
at the same flour mill that I did, just a few decades apart. He
left because he found a better job and I left after the mill
blew up. I was taking a day off when the mill blew but it was
never rebuilt.

We talked of him driving truck for one oil company and my
building depots at other. And we talked of all the cars I
bought and sold during my younger years. It didn’t seem long but
when I looked up a couple of hours had gone by and we both had big
smiles on our faces.

He asked when we were leaving on vacation and where we’d be
heading this time. Since our youngest and his family moved to
Oklahoma we’ll swing by there and see where end up. Who knows?
After all the compass points in all directions. An added bonus
is it started raining so I can’t mow the yard and we have no
idea what’s on the agenda.

I do know we’ll stop someplace so I can grab a cheeseburger and
the wife can have her healthier alternative. So enjoy our first
Monday of the week as I know we will. Now I need some coffee
before I have coffee with my cheeseburger.
Comments are always welcome.

Crazy days

August 6, 2018

I gave up watching news programs due to the bull they were
shipping and now think I will do the same with weather forecasts
as the forecast rarely match what we get. Early yesterday the
weather actors stated we would be partly cloudy. The above
picture shows the sky at its best yesterday.

We’ve all heard about California doing away with straws, that
plans to make a gun on a 3-D printer should be illegal, and now
I saw a news blurb that some Senator thinks Illegals should be
compensated when they cross our borders. Lord love a duck,
we’ve gone crazy.

Since August began there have been 96 shootings in Chicago that
killed 12, children are disappearing at an alarming rate, we
have wildfires destroying parts of our country and ruining the
air quality for miles around, and all the news can report is
the investigation into Trump colluding with Russia to win the

Our economy is looking up, more people are employed, and yet
some still claim we live in a divided country. Perhaps they
think if they keep telling lies long enough others will believe
them. Congress isn’t doing much except pointing fingers in their
sponsored outrage while reminding us why we need to vote them
in a few months.

I love my country but our politicians have again lowered the
bar. All that said, Enjoy our Monday as it looks rain here on
the east coast of Iowa, and we need it. Now for a coffee
infusion and some pizza flavored breakfast.
Comments are always welcome.

Friday figuring

August 3, 2018

Yesterday I awoke feeling like a 98-year-old man who just got
run over by a milk truck. When that happens I worry for a bit as
I don’t drink milk. So I went out with the camera and saw the
rays of the Sun coming through the clouds and instantly felt

When I looked down this butterfly was sitting there and he made
me laugh. There’s something about a little critter with an
attitude that causes a smile. With his jaw jutting out he looks
like he thinks he could whoop the world, if given the chance and
no birds spotted him looking for a tasty treat.

So after seeing the sky and the insect with the attitude I was
feeling better. The sky has been prettier and the leaf the
butterfly perched on looked a little worse for wear but one
finds beauty in the strangest places. It was almost like someone
was sending me a sign which caused a song to stick in my head.
Yeah, I was humming “Don’t worry, be happy” the rest the day.

Later this turkey vulture was circling the area and amongst the
clouds this bird looked much better than they do close up. If
you’ve ever run across one dining on road kill you know what we
mean. I probably should have got a clearer shot but felt I’d used
up all the luck earlier.

I didn’t spend the entire day outside, the chores I should have
got done yesterday are on the list for today, but retirement
does have its advantages. Enjoy our Friday as it’s the last one
we get this week. Now for some coffee, a little pizza, and
perhaps another stroll outside.
Comments are always welcome.