Kids get older......

Greetings from the long-overdue kids birthday party! Guess what season we're in..... yeah, mud. The roads seem to be particularly bad this year and this is the required footwear if you plan on exiting the house.

So I got the trusty four wheeler out and left it at the ready near the front door.... the plan was to haul people back and forth from vehicles parked at a remote location.

Here is the view as you are walking up the 'driveway'. It looked pretty bleak out there on Sunday.

The road is officially closed, as evidenced by these road block devices.

That's because the road is so soft that my truck sank overnight and we barely were able to extract it with the tractor. Center top are four holes that were where the truck sank, nearer the filled ruts and scratching of the tractor. This was Saturday fun... It may take a double click to enlarge these photos for proper viewing.

Anyway, the cooking was going well, with the spaghetti sauce simmering since about 11:00 A.M. Rosie kindly delivered some pub-brew from H&H, so I had coping mechanisms in place..... Peg did most all preparations for the day except for the sauce (with some help there as well).

This is Bryn, the youngest of the tribe.

It was Bryn that discovered the presence of 'mushrams' in the sauce. They were from some really huge mushrooms....

Next Rosie arrived with a major load of laundry!! Lucky she didn't fall off the four wheeler with that to manage.

The remote location. A heavily graveled road spur right close to Johnson's house.....

Donna arrived and got her first ride on a four wheeler. I think she liked it, or at least didn't complain about it.

Table is all ready, food is done, let's dive in.....

After dinner, I did the dishes while the others played a game that they seem to enjoy more than I do..... it's called Rummicub, or something like that. Next, I took a snooze in the recliner in order to rest up for the birthday cake..

which I did a nice job on this year. I ordered it just right.

We didn't have enough birthday candles for the combiined age, so Peg got out some alternate candles... I eventually hauled Bryn and Donna back to their vehicles and Rosie spent the night on our couch. So ended another sucessful birthday party.


Mid March

Yes, Rosie, you are correct. I was wondering if you would remember the charactors from those tapes you used to listen to. It's a photo from the website that is selling the CD version of the Cinnamon Bear stories. The site is pretty cool, complete info on the stories, etc. If any of you have childre or grandchildren, this is a gem....

We were greeted Tuesday morning by two inches of lovely, fluffy white magic. I thought this may be able to allow me to burn more brush piles, but it was mostly melted in the field by late afternoon.

I spent seven hours working in the woods at the south end of the field. It's nearly all cut, a good share of the brush and limbs removed from the area. I pulled the trees, limbs and all, out in the field proper so I could cut into firewood, then push the limbs into the woods with the back blace on the tractor.
Another F.O.O.L.S. sponsored event, what can I say????

By the way, the photo in last post that was obviously taken in the basement, is of the new basement plumbing nightmare. One drain takes the shower, sinks and laundry water to parts unknown. That drain became severely sluggish about a month or so ago. It got to the point that a single shower would cause water to back up onto the basement floor. So.... I cut the drain pipe before it left the basement, put in an elbow and some sump pump hose so all the water went into the luandry tub. This is where the washing machine water went anyway, so that was allright. I plugged the tub drain and put in a submersable sump pump which puts the gray water out to the south lawn... temporary fix till the ground is thawed and I can work on the drain..... looking forward to that!


I'm mad at March Madness.....

A couple of things caught my eye today. First, I find this very hard to believe. Just kidding... it's just business as usual with the capitol hill gang.

Isn't this about the most amazing hot air balloon you've ever seen?

Second, how childish is this? (I hate it mostly because it pre-empts my shows on TV.... either put it on ESPN or Sunday afternoon with the rest of the crap....)

O.K., Dick Tracy, any ideas what's going on here????? First correct answer wins a free pass to the next awesome F.O.O.L.S. event......

Gee, remember when good ol' Booghost would post on his awesome blog?? I'm wondering if he will ever re-start that project? Speaking of blogs, here's the link to Bryn's.....

This is the image that I am trying to hold in my brain.... warm weather, leaves, flowers (no mosquitos or other bugs.....)

By the way, Rose and Bryn, did you take a look at that pic in this post?


Friends Of Ottertail Landing Strip (F.O.O.L.S.) Update.

Don't forget to double click those pictures to get a larger size. These fire photos really look neat when enlarged.....

The F.O.O.L.S. were at it again. This time we started a little earlier.
Peg demon- strates the size of the pile......

The flames were not quite as overwhelm- ing looking as they are at night, but it was fun anway.

It took off really fast and burned very hot. No dirt at all in this one as it was the only pile we had made completely by hand.

This pile was smaller but burned longer because of the greater percentage of larger pieces of wood. We kept throwing the outside stuff back on the fire and it stayed HOT for several hours.

They really look cool when it gets dark. Three piles to go, may have to wait until later this week so the predicted snow will be covering the ground again. It's getting too thin out there to qualify as "snow covered", which allows you to burn whenever you want to without a permit.

Stay tuned for more updates.


FOOLS update.

The Friends of Ottertail Landing Strip (F.O.O.L.S.) has begun the brush burning process. After last years logging and bulldozing, we were left with five big brush piles.

On Saturday F.O.O.L.S prepared the largest of the piles for inciner- ation. This photo is, of course, is from last fall as I didnt' think to document the pile before torching it..... it was about nine feet tall and not much dirt in it. Chuck, the dozer man, did an excellent job of gathering the burnables from the work area.

We put a bunch of burnable garbage in three locations on the North side of the pile, added some drain oil to each spot and spread about 1/2 gallon of oil on the brush above the starters. Then a little shot of gas on each one, add a match to each one and voila, you have a nice blaze.

The photo above was taken from the deck on the back of the house. After lighting the pile, I realized I had no camera with me, so I went to the house, got the camera and took that shot about 10 minutes after igniting the pile.

We lit the pile right at dusk and it was a really nice evening. Some of the neighbor kids were around on snowmo- biles and they stopped to see the fire.

We stood around and watched the fire, drank a few Coors and enjoyed being out at night. The fire was amazing and after about one and a half hours it was mostly gone! As it calmed down we were able to throw in some of the reamins that had burned off. After two hours we dicided to leave it and go back to the house.

This is what it looked like two and a half hours after lighting. I'm not sure what the purple color is about, probably a digital limitation of the photo god.....

Here is what it looked like the following morning. Most of what is left is frozen to the ground, so will wait a while to regroup the remains for a second fire. We had such a good time that tonight we are going to light up the second brush pile on the West side of the clearing. That will leave three piles on the East side for future fun.....
So watch for F.O.O.L.S. updates. Maybe you would like to share a bonfire some night!


Yikes!! 'Tis March!!

I'm not sure what has caused yram's pics to disappear, but I'm going to try this anyway. The weather is a little warmer but it's not spring yet in Northcentral Wisconsin!! We are supposed to get into the low 40's this weekend--we'll see. I've got some outside work to tackle and Ivan and I are going to get some time in the air. That has been a long time coming and not to get put off anymore.

In other news, check out the view of Green Island!

And you may want to check this site to get your 'puter ready for the early daylight savings time change.

Here's a great looking bike. It uses an engine made byRotec Radial, a place in Australia. It's just like that bad boy in the plane behind it, except the plane has a nine cylinder while the bike is a seven. They are just about the coolest engines I've ever seen.

And if it has seven cylinders, I guess seven exhaust pipes make sense. I'll bet it's loud but that radial engine sound is unique. I would love to see this in person, and maybe I will. This bike was at Oshkosh Airventure last year, maybe they will be back.

This is what they look like on the inside. Most have an odd number of cylinders and the firing order proceeds around the circle firing every other cylinder. That way, every two revolutions of the engine lets each cylinder fire and go through it's cycle.

I looked at a website a while ago that had a bunch of old personalized Christmas cards from years back. Some were quite bizarre, but this was the classiest of the lot. Go figure.....

Anyone know much about operating a webcam online? They are not very expensive and the software can be gotten free, but I'm wondering what all is involved in the process. Anyone out there running one, or know someone who's running one?

Anyone recognize the goings-on in this photo?

_____________Hey, shovel that snow, would ya???_____________


Please note that some photos disappeared from this post, thus the references to things that you can't see. Sorry Yram, sorry all who view.......

2007 First Annual Carlson Pinochle Tourney

Paul and Candace hosted what we hope to be the first of many pinochle tournaments at their lovely home in West Bend. Attendees included Jenny, Liz, Dennis (bystander), Kate, Mary, John, Paul and Candace. With only 7 active players, we had one table of four and one table of three. The three table, needless to say, held the losers who were allowed to rotate and play the winning team at the 4 table.

As you can see from the picture, Paul layed a few ground rules. Violators were given demerits with Liz and Jenny being the most overt overseers. We were all amused by the fact that Paul received one of the first black marks when he ignored rule #3: "only strong voiced monotone bids will be accepted". You can imagine...a breathy and tremulous 20 with a whimsical tilt of the head. sheesh!
Liz and Candace were a strong team and the two of them along with the 3rd in line, the violator himself played a 3 handed run off at the end of the day. Liz Carlson walked away with the trophy and the complimentary signed autograph of card shark "Sly Boots".

Click on the photo for a close up of Sly Boots...our hero! Needless to say, there was vast amounts of smart talk, great food, plenty to drink and countless laffs.
The side entertainment was a hoot as well. P & C's new Mac with a built in camera and fun softward gave us losers something to do while waiting for the elite to fall. Here is a sample of our fun...

Isn't this just awful? And this is not the worst! heehee...isn't it wonderful how adults can become laughing hyennas at the silliest things?

It was just a ton of fun and it is always exciting to be present at the beginning of what we hope to be a long tradition.

Some final photos of the day. We sure missed Lucy!