Bad day

July 20, 2018

You’ve probably heard that Iowa was hit by as many as 27
tornadoes yesterday and reports of injuries and damages are
still coming in. From what we’ve heard the damages were mostly
in the central part of our state.

In Pella a Vermeer plant had major damage and some empolyees
went sent to the hospital with injuries. The plant that makes
agricultural and industrial equipment is closed to assess the

In Marshalltown around 10 people were injured and thankfully
none critically. Several buildings were damaged and clean up
will take some time. The tornado even took the top of the clock
tower off, which laded in the street.

In Bondurant it was much the same. Downed trees, damaged
houses, and clean up and repair. Other cities and other towns
were hit as well. The affected areas are asking that gawkers go
elsewhere to allow medical, law enforcement, and clean up crews
full entry.

Our hearts goes out to those impacted and prayers have been
sent. Enjoy our Friday as it will only feel like a couple hours
before the weekend is gone. Now for some coffee.
Comments are always welcome.


Some times…

July 19, 2018

you just have to go out and look around to entertain yourself.
Or at least I do.

The little fellow above was perched atop the pole that holds
our bird feeder and although a bit drab looking he caught my
attention. He’s only about a half-inch long so the pictures may
not super clear but we’ll share them anyway.

If you look close there is a blue jay in this tree who was mad
about something. He was squawking and jumping around the tree
like he lost his billfold or something.

As I was looking at this little new growth tree I noticed the
upper branches swaying way too had for the small breeze we had
at the time. A closer look revealed the squirrel who was
bouncing around like someone at a Planet Fitness.

A little later I glanced up to the sky and noticed what looked
like a snarling face. Don’t know what he was mad at but shortly
after I snapped the picture the wind blew the clouds in some
unrecognizable globs of white.

Later the moon was visible and the man in moon was looking
good. We didn’t chat long as I knew he getting close to setting
on the horizon and his voice would get muffled by the trees to
our west.

Yesterday brought more clouds that when pictures were taken
looked almost like paintings. Not sure if the wildfires out
west or upcoming storms were the reason but I was glad I had
the camera.

And that concludes this little excursion into the sights from
our little portion of the East coast of Iowa. Enjoy our Thursday
as the weekend is only a dream away. Now I’m off to get some
coffee and leftover pizza for breakfast.
Comments are always welcome.

Back in the day…

July 18, 2018

Had a great visit with Dad yesterday and we talked almost the
entire time of things that happened on the farm. Some before my
time, some I remember, and some I heard for the first time.

Of course the Great American Heat Wave of 1936 came up, which
is when the average temperature in Iowa was 108 degrees in July,
and set a record that stands today. It was even hotter than 2016
when the gloom and doom crowd cried ‘Global Warming’.

It was also the year the first tractor arrived on the farm as
the horses wouldn’t work in the daytime heat and all work that
involved the horses had to be done at night when regular folk
would be sleeping on their porches. They slept on the porch
because it was cooler than the house.

Then the winter of the same year came up when Iowa set the
all-time snowfall record of 42.9 inches and the average
temperature for the entire winter was 12.6 degrees and this
combination left over 100,000 Iowa farms isolated for seven

We talked of the horse-drawn manure spreader that sat by the
barn and how us kids used to get in so much trouble playing on
the old machinery. My sister attracted a bull that got loose
while wearing her red sweater and I got stung by a nest full of
hornets that was hidden on the spreader. Until I found it.

We ended up with barns. Ours was red and Dad’s caregiver said
the farm she grew up had a white barn. And the memories of
painting the old barn came flooding back. For our red barn a
mixture of linseed oil and rust, mixed to perfection, ended with
a perfect red color.

Way back when there weren’t many paint choices and paint was
too expensive. I ventured that the white barn was painted with
a mixture of the linseed oil and lime. When home I checked and
it was milk and lime added to the linseed oil used to make the

When paint became more available, and cheaper, many farmers
would choose red paint to honor the tradition. Don’t know if
paints back then sealed as good as the linseed oil and don’t
care enough to research it.

So our stroll down memory lane was actually walking the rows,
but we all had smiles on our faces when it ended. Enjoy our
Wednesday as it’ll be about a week before we get another.
Comments are always welcome.

What the?

July 17, 2018

I’ll forewarn the few Liberals who read this post that this
contains my opinion on sensitive matters which may offend
you. It is not meant to be racist, sexist, or part of a right
wing extremist campaign. If this opinion offends you, please
take a deep breath and find safe space elsewhere.

As some of us know new Medicare cards are being sent out and I
just got mine. Silly me, I assumed it would just be a copy of
the old card sent out because the paper card gets worn out in
billfolds. So I set the old card next to the new and they were
not the same.

The old card had name, Social Security number, what plans one
is eligible for, and when you signed up. The entire card was in
English. The new card no longer has my Social Security number,
that has been replaced with a slightly longer code with letters
and numbers.

And the new card is sub-titled in Spanish! With the new card
Name has been replaced with Name/Nombre and so on. Even the
cover letter from the Department of Health of Human Services is
bi-lingual in English and Spanish.

But the other piece of paper in the envelope really frosted my
tomato. Thinking this second sheet explained a little more about
the changes I was not a happy camper when I read the header
which stated ‘Help in other languages’. Huh?

Yes it appears you can call 1-800-MEDICARE and get help in
Armenian, Chinese, French, German, Haitian Creole, Italian,
Japanese, Korean, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, Tagalog, and

I may be old school, but this bugs me. If you have lived here
long enough to pay in for enough quarters to be eligible shouldn’t
you be speaking English anyway? No wonder there aren’t many cost
of living increases.

On top of being government run, which we know is not cost
effective, our government sees fit to hire interpreters in case
someone calls who doesn’t speak English? I’d keep my old all
English card but the number wouldn’t work anymore.

Enjoy our Tuesday. Now for some coffee and a Snicker’s.

The old way

July 16, 2018

Do you ever wonder what things were like during earlier times.
As someone who believes they were born too late and should have
been born in the 1800s I do sometimes wonder what it would be

I have mentioned the book ‘Manual of Social and business
Forms’ by Thomas E. Hill and published in 1875 before and
thought, let’s take another look.

Social etiquette and manners are covered in the book and after
another look it sounds like things were crazier then. Some of
rules make sense while others don’t, but here are some that
caught our attention.

Under small talk- No topic of absorbing interest may be
admitted in polite conversation. It might lead to a discussion.

Marriage- Anyone with bright red hair and florid complexion
should marry someone with jet-black hair. The very corpulent
should may the thin and spare, and the body, wiry, cold-
blooded should marry the round-featured, warmhearted, emotional

Street etiquette- When crossing the pavement, a lady should
raise her dress with the right hand, a little about the ankle.
To raise the dress with both hands is vulgar and can only be
excused when mud is very deep.

Conduct to avoid at the ball- No gentleman should enter the
ladies’ dressing room at a ball.

Bowing- A gentleman should not bow from a window to a lady on
the street though he may bow slightly from the street upon being
recognized by a lady in a window. Such recognition should,
however, generally be avoided, as gossip is likely to attach
undue importance to it when seen by others.

Lord love a duck! And that’s just some of rules listed under
etiquette. Today I catch myself saying, ‘excuse my French’ a
lot. Back then I’d probably be hung for the slip ups.

Enjoy our Monday as it looks to be the beginning of another
great week. Now for more coffee and a Snicker’s.
Comments are always welcome.

The Jamboree

July 15, 2018

We decided to throw caution to the wind, ignore the 50% chance
of rain, and experience the Trucker’s Jamboree yesterday and it
worked out fairly well. We even watched a little of the Truckers’ Olympics while there.

This was the second time we’ve seen this truck but I’m drawn
to it again. One would think the colors would look hideous in
this combination but it works.

Support for veterans and law enforcement on a variety of trucks
and colorful murals from the hoods to the sleepers. It seemed a
shame they didn’t have a separate area for just trucks painted
like these.

As it was a truck show you noticed not everyone agrees on what
their truck should look like. The red and orange Peterbilts in
the picture are and example.

A few pickups were spotted like the old red International and
the older 1919 Defiance.

The rig above may look familiar to fans of scary movies that
have cars featured in them. We believe it to be a Henderson
but are correctable.

As the drizzle started we entered the last row and encountered
this trailer advertising the truck museum at the truckstop. It
caught my eye because of the old Coke delivery truck on it.
So we got some pictures, the camera didn’t get too wet, and we
cruised back home without sticking to the seats. Not a bad day.

Enjoy our Sunday as the start of the work week is only a dream
away. Now I need some coffee.
Comments are always welcome.

Just some thoughts

July 13, 2018

At the grocery store the guy bagging our purchases asked me if
we found everything and I replied that if we didn’t we should
have. For some reason he must have thought that was the funniest
thing he’d heard all morning as he was still chuckling when he
finished bagging and wished us a good day.

We are thinking of cruising to the “World’s Biggest Truckstop”
tomorrow to experience the Trucker’s Jamboree. Nothing like
walking through acres of shined up, chromed out, show trucks
during a hot spell. There’s only a 50% chance of rain so that
means the odds are just as good it won’t.

If it isn’t pouring down rain we’ll be there. Plenty of sharp
dressed trucks, good food, live music, and events you can’t see
anywhere else. Things like guys pulling an antique semi tracker
with a rope up a slight incline while being timed. Last year just
watching made me sweat more.

And I’ve been missing calls on my cell phone for a while now
and decided today was a good time to figure out why. Sitting at
the kitchen table I flipped open the phone only to discover a
missed call 4 minutes earlier. My thought was that since said
cell phone was older than dirt the ringer just quit.

The phone company has been after me for 3 years to get a smart
phone. They claim I’m past due. I don’t like upgrading or want
a smart phone. I just get tired of trying to talk to anyone at
at our local cell phone provider. They try to sell me a phone
that does everything but wash the car while I tell them I want
a flip phone without a camera.

All that said, I did manage to get the ringer going once again,
and yes, it rings when someone calls. No music or sound effects
for me. What’s wrong with a phone that rings?

Enjoy our Friday as we won’t see another one for a week. Now
I need more coffee and some leftover pizza.
Comments are always welcome.