Summer days

July 1, 2019

The feral kittens found a new hiding spot and it took a while to find it. They would venture out then scamper right back at the slightest noise. Turns out, their new hiding spot was next to where I’d planned to stand and get a few pictures of the Blue Angels as they flew over.

While waiting for the flyover other things caught the eye. Like the splash of bright colors in an otherwise bland hill and the winged creature sunning in the alley. Not sure if it’s a butterfly or a moth.

Was worried at first that this one was going to crash. While the jet looks quite low the tree is a really big old growth oak on a lot that is elevated above our viewing spot. These things can scoot though.

Here are a few pictures of the Blue Angels in formation above us. We only had a short peek at them or would have gotten more pictures. No thought was given to cruising out to closer viewing spot for more shots as it was just too stinking hot out.

Sunday was a picture perfect summer day until about 5 hours after the Air Show ended when the skies opened up and the rains came. With winds strong enough to blow semi trucks over on the interstate and knock out power to about 40,000 homes. We weren’t one of those homes.

Enjoy our Monday as it’s the first day of the rest of out lives. Now for more coffee.
Comments are always welcome.

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Seeing what happens

June 29, 2019

The Air Show starts today and the Navy Blue Angels are part of said show. I took the above shot from our driveway and a few things became abundantly clear. I forgot my Navy training about how fast they fly, and our driveway is surrounded by a lot of old growth trees.

This means that when I hear the jets coming the camera has to be ready as the jets are only visible for 2-3 seconds. In that time you have to frame your shot, focus the lens, and take the picture. I’ll try to get some better shots today. I also found out I didn’t forget a few choice cuss words.

And I forgot how loud military jets can be when they are really booking. But at least the old training helps me locate where they’ll come out of the treeline. Perhaps I should try an auto-focus lens yet somehow feel that’s cheating.

This little critter was a lot easier to photograph as he is nowhere near as fast as the jets. With all the noise of the jets passing over this guy just stayed on the wall for about a half hour alloying time to get a few shots.

And like other areas of the country, we have a heatwave going on and I think that’s why the Mama cat didn’t have the kittens out. Mama cat herself came around to get her ears scratched and food bowl filled but the kittens must have been hidden in a shady spot.

Enjoy our Saturday since it’s here and we can’t change it anyway. Now for more coffee before the Air Show starts in about an hour and a half.
Comments are always welcome.


June 25, 2019

Birds were out along with the sun this morning as I got ready to go over and visit Dad. After he had breakfast we made small talk until he began to talk about his time in the Navy. And I learned something.

He said his ship was in the harbor when General MacArthur, aboard the USS Missouri signed the surrender agreement with Japan on September 5th, 1945 just outside Tokyo.

He could see the ship from his but not see the actual signing. He talked of his time as a Gunners Mate and that he had crossed the ocean 3 times during his service. When the war ended he got assigned to a cargo ship and said they pushed all the cargo overboard, brought home-ward board soldiers aboard, and took them home.

And we talked of those we met while serving and those who didn’t come back. One of his brothers didn’t make it back and was buried over there. we laughed about boot camp and how some got sea sick when the ship left the port.

Actually I learned a lot. This was the first time he talked of his time during the war in such detail and I savored every word. I don’t know why he finally decided to open up yet am extremely grateful that he did. When I left we were both smiling.

Enjoy our Tuesday as hump day is only a dream away. Now for some coffee and leftover pizza.
Comments are always welcome.


We must remember

June 6, 2019

Today is the 75th anniversary of D-Day, an operation that involved 150,000 soldiers and 195,700 naval personnel, that began the liberation of German occupied France. Allied casualties were over 10,000 with 4,414 confirmed dead.

And while I was watching the morning news one of the talking heads stated that our kids today believe we fought with the Germans against the Russians! I certainly hope that isn’t true.

Later in the program they profiled a Native American who became a combat nurse and served during that time and treated casualties of the invasion. Yet when she returned home there were no parades or fanfare, only signs in businesses in her home town that said ‘Indians and Dogs Not Allowed!’

We must remember and pass our knowledge on to our children and grand children so they remember after we’re gone. Today we are 75 years separated from D-Day and we don’t have many left who can say they were there. Sadly, in my lifetime there will be none.

And if you’re having a bad day think about the 18 year old boys who jumped off the LSTs and stormed the beach 75 years ago today. We owe them our freedom and respect so the least we can do is remember them.

Comments are always welcome.


What do you think?

May 28, 2019

Have you heard of the LEGION Act that was introduced into Congress on February, 2019. LEGION stands for Let Everyone Get Involved in Opportunities for National Service, which may not be what you think. It is basically two bills, one in the House and one in the Senate, that would allow almost all veterans to join the American Legion.

The government now recognizes:

World War I, April 6, 1917- November 11, 1918

World War II, December 7, 1941- December 31, 1946

Korean War, June 25, 1950- January 31, 1955

Vietnam War, February 28, 1961- May 7, 1975

Lebanon/Grenada August 24, 1982- July 31, 1984

Panama, December 20, 1989- January 31, 1990

Gulf War/War on Terrorism, August 2, 1990 to present

So now the legislators want to add over a dozen conflicts to the list to allow thousands more veterans to join veterans group they previously couldn’t. Membership has benefits, programming, and emotional support. Members of the American Legion and VFW seem to think it’s a good plan.

Some of the 12+ conflicts included in the bills are:

the Greek and Chinese civil wars

the Lebanon Crisis of 1958

the Bay of Pigs invasion of 1961

and the Cold War 1947-1991

The Senate version of the LEGION Act is S. 504 and you can go to the link to read that bill.

The House version of the LEGION Act is H.R. 1641 and we have a link for that.

Not sure what the chances of the bills passing are but both are bipartisan bills. All that said I’m not for it or against it but it does sound like a grown up version of everyone who plays gets a trophy.

Enjoy our Tuesday as our basement is pumped out and ready for more rain later today. Now I need some Coffee.
Comments are always welcome.


Memorial day

May 27, 2019


Sailors’ night before

December 20, 2018

Twas the night before Christmas, the ship was out steaming,
Sailors stood watch while others were dreaming.
They lived in a crowd with racks tight and small,
In a 80-man berthing, cramped one and all.

I had come down the stack with presents to give,
And to see inside just who might perhaps live.
I looked all about, a strange sight did I see,
No tinsel, no presents, not even a tree.

No stockings were hung, shined boots close at hand,
On the bulkhead hung pictures of a far distant land.
They had medals and badges and awards of all kind,
And a sober thought came into my mind.

For this place was different, so dark and so dreary,
I had found the house of a Sailor, once I saw clearly.
A Sailor lay sleeping, silent and alone,
Curled up in a rack and dreaming of home.

The face was so gentle, the room squared away,
This was the United States Sailor today.
This was the hero I saw on TV,
Defending our country so we could be free.

I realized the families that I would visit this night,
Owed their lives to these Sailors lay willing to fight.
Soon round the world, the children would play,
And grownups would celebrate on Christmas Day.

They all enjoyed freedom each day of the year,
Because of the Sailor, like the one lying here.
I couldn’t help wonder how many lay alone,
On a cold Christmas Eve on a sea, far from home.

The very thought brought a tear to my eye,
I dropped to my knees and started to cry.
The Sailor awakened and I heard a calm voice,
“Santa, don’t cry, this life is my choice.”

“Defending the seas all days of the year,
So others may live and be free with no fear.”
I thought for a moment, what a difficult road,
To live a life guided by honor and code.

After all it’s Christmas Eve and the ship’s underway!
But freedom isn’t free and it’s sailors who pay.
The Sailor say’s to our country “be free and sleep tight,
No harm will come, not on my watch and not on this night.

The Sailor rolled over and drifted to sleep,
I couldn’t control it, I continued to weep.
I kept watch for hours, so silent, so still,
I watched as the Sailor shivered from the night’s cold chill.

I didn’t want to leave on that cold dark night,
This guardian of honor so willing to fight.
The Sailor rolled over and with a voice strong and sure,
Commanded, “Carry on Santa, It’s Christmas, and All is Secure!”