Friday, June 29, 2007

A Little Blog Housekeeping...

I decided today that my Blog over here at Blogspot was boring.... or maybe I was just bored with the look since I hadn't changed it in a while. With these thoughts lurking in the back of my mind I was playing in Photoshop Elements when I realized I had the perfect 'brush' to make a Heading Graphic with. So.... Tada! LOL! I do love playing with Templates, but it can be tedious. I'm just starting to figure out the new 'widgets' on the new blogs. It took me about 2 hours from the time I said, "Gosh, I'm bored with the Spring Flowers" till I was able to put this up.

Now to answer a few questions:

About the Crowds picture for the Monday Photo Shoot.... No, I don't have any pictures without animals ;p Not really, but it is always fun to try and interpret the picture so I can use an animal shot.... It's kind of become a tradition and wouldn't all of you be disappointed if I didn't? LOL!

Several people asked about the spider in the Wordless Wednesday entry.... Ummmm.... I wasn't sure what kind of spider it was, so I asked G. He says it is a young Banana Spider. I had only noticed the big ones before I guess ::shrug:: To those of you who this creeped out... SORRY! Ummm.... The web is actually right over the top of the barrels I store my grain in. Just above my head I leave it because I figure he/she eats flies, and it doesn't bother me so I don't bother it!

To the people who commented on the Summer Vacation entry and saying that they didn't think I looked 46... Well, I was, but just barely. That picture was taken the last week in May and I actually turned 47 the first week in June. But, I WAS only 46 when the picture was taken. As for the others that commented about none of us looking the ages I listed (except for my Grandson, of course)..... All I can say is THANK YOU!... and Blush a little. I guess I'll just rack it up to good genes LOL!

I have a cool entry planned for John's Weekend assignment...... Stay Tuned!

Note added later: I noticed in looking at the widgets which I set up to have my Blogrolls from Bloglines displayed that I have several 'bad' and/or 'dead' links in there. I guess I don't usually notice because I mostly just look at the ones that have entries. I see a little weekend job of cleaning up my Bloglines account in my future. I won't remove all the links, just the ones to blogs that no longer exist. I think I will just move the 'inactive' ones to a folder marked as such. You never know when an old friend will return to blogging and I wouldn't want to miss them!

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Monday, June 25, 2007

Your Monday Photo Shoot: Crowds

Taking a break from my Adventures in Vacationing, I thought I would see what John over at By The Way had up for this weeks photo shoot.

Your Monday Photo Shoot: Get a picture of a crowd or crowded event. Conventions, weddings, parties in cramped spaces -- you know, anywhere there's lots of folks doing something.

Hmmmm... well, that seemed simple enough! So, here is a picture of one of the locals here getting ready to rope a steer and the crowd behind him, Most of them were waiting their turns ;p



Want to play along?? Snap a picture, pull it up out of your archives, or scan it in. Once you have it in some form of electronic pixels and bits, put it into a blog entry and pop over to John's and leave your link! Now, get out there and find a crowd!?! 

Sunday, June 24, 2007

What I did on my Summer Vacation--Part 1

If you read the mess in the entry below this one you saw, buried somewhere in all of that, the mention of a vacation... The first one that G and I had taken in almost 3 years. Why so long? Hmmm... well in the way things have of being, we just had never had everything come together for us to take more than a couple of days off at any one time. We had 2 weeks coming and we planned to enjoy them!

We spent the first few days of freedom just vegging at home and packing :p  But we had big plans for the remainder of the time before we would need to come back to reality. We were making a road trip! Spending time together and driving is something we've always loved and was actually cheaper than the two of us flying close to our destination and then renting a car.

Our road trip would take us out of Florida, up thru Georgia, into Tennessee and finally the beautiful state of Kentucky. The end of our trek would find us at my Grandmother's house. We would be there for 8 days visiting with my Grandmother (who turned 92 this year) and my Mother. My Mother lives with Gram and helps her out. But not as much as you would think. My Mother still works a full time job and Gram is by herself for eight hours most every day.

Seeing my Gram and Mom, who I hadn't seen for a while, was pretty great, but four days into our stay would come the bestest part: My Son, DIL, and four year old Grandson would arrive to spend 3 days with us. Although we had all visited each other in several varied combinations, this would be the first time we ALL got together under one roof at the same time. It would also be the first time my Grandmother (who doesn't travel well anymore--she likes to be in familiar surroundings since my grandfather died a few years ago) had gotten to see her Great, Great Grandson!

The highlight of the trip was the taking of a photo... a very special photo... it would contain 5 generations of my family. The day we took the picture we would also enjoy a surprise visit by my Uncle and Aunt, who live near my grandmother, stopping by to meet their Great nephew. My Cousin (daughter of said Aunt and Uncle) and her husband and two sons would also stop by to say Hi to all of the out of towners.



We all gravitated to the front porch as the house became too full. It was a wonderful afternoon spent on the porch, swinging on the porch swing, sitting on the steps and various porch chairs, sipping glasses of tea and soda with the air full of  "Do you remember..." and "Remember the time" and "Wow, the last time we..."

It may not have been the most remarkable trip I have ever taken, or the most exciting time G and I  have ever had together. No Roller Coasters, or amazing scenery, or exciting city to explore. But I think it was probably one of the best vacation I have ever had and will probably be treasured more than any other I have taken in a long time. 

Note: The picture is of my Grandmother (92), my Mother (65), myself (46), my son (31), and my Grandon (4..almost 5).. Yep, that would be Five Generations!

Next Post: What I did on my Summer Vacation: Part 2

Friday, June 22, 2007

I'm Back... I'm back... I'm Back!!

I'm back... I've returned... I'm here!!! LOL! Why have I been gone? Well, the usual answer... technology attacked! ROFL!

This has not been a good year for me staying connected has it? Last year at this time we were moving and I had SUCH a time finding a good way to connect to the Internet causing me to be gone for many weeks, then in December/January we had the whole laptop must visit the repair shop several times with the final result being me getting a new (almost free... I had to pay for insurance on it) laptop. Then we had the problem with my satellite dish (which I use to connect to the Internet) being slightly out of line and needing to be put on a different kind of post..... Well, this story actually starts THERE.

The problem earlier this spring was that my original installer put my -very- heavy satellite dish on a wooden post. This worked just fine for several months until...  Until the continuous getting wet/drying out of the post and the weight of the dish caused the dish to pull just a tiny bit off of the signal. Now, for those of you with satellite TV... this wouldn't have affected you hardly at all, but I, in order to send a signal back to the satellite, need to be much more specifically aimed. So, I called the nice person in India (yep, it always seems to be India, doesn't it LOL!) and was finally sent back to a person in the States and an appointment was set up for someone to come out and take a look at what was going on.

This is how we met Mark. Mark is about the nicest repair guy you could imagine. Anyway, he took one look, asked me if a local guy installed me, and, when I said yes, he just smiled. Seems that a lot of people you contact locally (not thru the actual company) are 'representatives' and pay a fee to be allowed to install the dishes. They are NOT techs. AND, a lot of them install on wooden posts or other places that eventually don't work out. Mark let me know that a metal post was what I needed, but that he didn't have one with him. He would get me back on line, but it would eventually do the same thing again. He fixed me up and we made arrangements for him to come back out and put me in a metal post. This he did for me a few days later. Problem solved!

Yeah, Right! Not if you have my luck. A few weeks later I am again on the phone with India and eventually gotten into contact with Mark. Why not call Mark directly? Well, because he actually works for the Large Company that supports my dish he has to have a work order so he won't have to charge me (I'm under warranty still). In fact, that is what he told me when I did call him first. Sigh! So I have to talk to India first LOL!

Mark shows up in one day (not the 4 to 5 I was told to expect, I told you he was the best!) and he checks me out and it turns out my transmitter on the dish was bad. This was the middle of May. He fixes it, looks at the tree (which is now in full leaf) and says. "Geez, I can't believe I put your pole there... that tree is -almost- in your path. You may have to trim it back a little, or I could move the pole....."

"Naw" I say..."Don't worry about it... We'll just trim the tree when we get back from Vacation!"

So, we went on vacation 2 days later and when we returned in 2 weeks we had a messed up signal. Figuring it was the tree, we trimmed the tree.... And we trimmed it again... And THEN G went after limbs with a saw! We cut a huge 'hole' in the tree and still had no access. This all went on over a period of about 2 weeks. All this time I had no access most of the time. Sometimes I would catch a signal for a couple of hours, just enough time to check e-mail (maybe!) and then it would be gone again! :(   At this point I again call India! They put me in contact with Mark who feels terrible. He comes out and apologizes and apologizes. Like it was his fault... which it wasn't... technology sometimes doesn't work! He thought at first the piece he had replaced had also failed, but after testing we decided it was probably still the tree.

Long story short (o.k., not really short LOL!) instead of moving the pole, which would have been a PAIN! He got the company to let him move us to a different satellite. This puts our signal coming in over the huge field next to us, and missing the tree entirely AND I actually ended up with a better signal! Alls well that ends well, and I spent all of yesterday catching up with my mail and everyone's blogs from the last -3- weeks! Which took a while let me tell you!

Now that I have a (hopefully) reliable connection, and a (hopefully) reliable computer, what do you have to look forward to? Well, a nice post (with pictures) of our vacation. Pictures of the new barn going up. We have a trip to the zoo planned for next week (which will, of course, have lots of pictures), and lots of just silly things. I'm thrilled to have my connection back. You don't realize how much you depend on it till you don't have it! I don't know how many times I said, "I'll just check on that" and then realize I couldn't just pop on the Internet for the information. Oh, and our new friend, Mark? He and his wife (who we met when she accompanied him on a call) invited us to their house for a Halloween party. See, if I hadn't had problems with my connection we wouldn't have met two very nice people who are now our friends! So every cloud does have a silver lining!

Thursday, June 07, 2007

Your Monday Photo Shoot: Orange

At first glance I wasn't sure about what to do for this weeks Photo Shoot from John, but luckily for me the perfect photo opportunity presented itself on Tuesday. They came to break ground for the new barn, and low and behold.... one of the big earth movers was ORANGE! But, not being satisfied with just a picture of a big orange machine, I wanted a horsy reaction to it. Unfortunately, all of the horses met the coming of the big orange monsters with.... boredom! Sigh! Still, I did get a shot of Boo at least lifting his head from his supper to take a look at one of them!

Your Monday Photo Shoot: Orange

Consider Orange. It's a fine color, but of all the colors in our cultural spectrum, it's the one that seems to get the least respect -- sure, you wear it for a safety vest, but you're not especially likely to wear it to fancy ball (especially if you're a guy). So this week's Photo Shoot is about giving up a little respect for the color:
Your Monday Photo Shoot: Picture something in orange. As a challenge, don't take pictures of actual oranges (the fruit), and picturing actual pumpkins seems a little too easy too. Other than that, go for it.

Want to play along?? Just pop over to By The Way on Monday's and check out the topic and get out there and take a photo!

Side note added later: It's harder to see in this pic because I downsized for the internet, but in the original larger file you can -really- see Boo's tongue sticking out LOL!