Friday, August 29, 2008

Issue 14

Scout Camp by Steve L.

On Saturday my Dad and I went on an overnight hike. We hiked about three miles in, with about 20-25 lb packs. When we got to the Twin Lakes we did a little fishing. I caught the biggest fish! I also learned how to gut it. Blah! And then we cooked our fish in the fire. (It tasted like chicken.) I caught three fish that day and worked on my fishing merit badge. The fishing part was fun but the gutting part was gross, but strangely satisfying.

That night I had a nice dinner of half-cooked ravioli and then we hiked a little farther to get a scenic view. Then we went back and told joke ghost stories around the fire. When we got up in the morning we had a breakfast of go-gurts, bananas and poptarts. Then we hiked back to the car and drove home. The hardest part was sitting in the car, driving there and back. It was a long drive and all we had was Elvis to listen to. The hike was fun and I can't wait to do it again.

Happy Birthday Whitney

Whitney turned 14 this week! The thing I don't understand is I ever got old enough to have a fourteen year-old! She had asked for clip-on earrings for her birthday, but when I couldn't find any at several stores, I asked her if she wanted to get her ears pierced. She had declined the offer last year (our family rule is you have to be 13 - and a girl) and she has such a low tolerance for pain I wasn't sure she'd want to. She went back and forth for a couple of days, but when she remembered the beautiful pair of rose quartz earnings Auntie Hoki had given her in NZ, she decided to go for it.

We met Grandma N at the mall for lunch on her birthday, but Whitney was too nervous to eat so we went to get her ears done first. She was so anxious, but when the time came she didn't even flinch! She was so excited that she went through with it, and I think it's a lovely feminine look for her. We then enjoyed a lovely lunch with Grandma and Whitney got to spend the afternoon shopping with Grandma for a new church outfit.

We topped off the day with a family movie party and yogurt parfaits! Whitney - We love you and are proud of the beautiful young woman you have become.

Self Portrait by Ellie age 3

Cooper Update by Whitney

Listen to my tale of woe and pity me.

I took Cooper to the vet yesterday because he was pawing at his ear, and shaking his head and acting really uncomfortable. So I looked inside it and it was red and a few scabs from him scratching it. Any way, they took a look and there was a fox tail grass seed down it right next to the ear drum. So they had to put him under and extract it while he was gassed out.

He feels much better , but it came to a grand total of, (drum roll please,) $104.00!!!!!!! It would have been fifty more dollars if they had done an injection to get him to sleep, instead of gassing him with a mask. With the gassing they hallucinate, but it's cheaper so I had that done. I got to watch them extract it, (the grass seed.) But when he started to wake up, he started to hallucinate. (Seeing things that weren't really there, not knowing where he was, uncontrollable panic, etc.) It was scary/sad. His eyes were open, even though he was still asleep, he started whining, and thrashing around and both nurses had to hold him so he wouldn't fall off the table. Finally he calmed down and woke up, but he was still whimpering a little. ,:(

After that he was tired, and I held him for a wile while waiting for mom to pick us up. She thought it was going to take an hour so she went to do some errands, but it only took ten maybe fifteen minuets. We didn't need any meds after that, and I am sooooooo glad I caught it before it had worked it's way deeper and ruptured his ear drum. ,:) But now I am seriously in debt to my mom by $164.37. :p But I’ve also enrolled in pet insurance so I can afford any more unexpected surprises. (And Steve has offered to pull all the weeds in the back) :)

So if any one has any jobs they would be willing to pay for, I am willing to do it. (Debt stinks!)

How the Duck got His Colors by Janey

There is an Indian story that says that "back then" all the ducks used to be white. Then OLD-man saw all the ducks gathering to fly south. So OLD-man was on this big hill covered with LOTS of moss. He gathered some moss and he thought of something to trick the ducks because he wanted a big duck dinner. So he began walking down the big hill, then he called to the ducks and said, "Come on lets have a party and dance, but first help me build a tepee to dance in."

So he got some poles and leaned them against each other and wound them together with some thread. Then he spread the moss over the tepee. So he built a nice fire in the middle and then he called and said, "Lets have a party with nice dancing."

One wise duck said "Don't listen to him."

So Old-man saw that they were thinking about it, but then they decided it would be fun to go to a party. Grey goose and his brother decided they would just watch. The ducks went in and Old-man said "Would some of you play some instruments?" and they started dancing around the fire.

Then he said "Stop. For this dance you need fancy clothes. I'll get out my paint brush and paint you. For this dance you need to close your eyes, or they'll be burned by the fire."

They started dancing with their eyes closed and and one by one he put them in a basket to kill them after the dance. So grey goose and his brother yelled "Stop" and everyone opened their eyes. So they saw what was happening and flew south. To this day the ducks have kept their bright painted colors and fly south and if they have red eyes it means they peeked at the fire.

Ice Cream Review

One Cheesecake Brownie

I attended a Scout camp in Moab a few summers ago in the dead of summer. The heat was so intense that the soles of my hiking shoes literally separated from the rest of the shoe. We slept on top of our sleeping bags and prayed for wind. It was fun, but very hot. Having lived in Arizona I know that the only thing to do in the middle of the summer was to get yourself inside next to the air conditioner. Our large group found an ice cream parlor in Moab and decided to have some ice cream. I ordered a scoop of Farr brand Strawberry Cheesecake ice cream. It consisted of vanilla ice cream with a strawberry ripple and REAL chunks of cheesecake. It was rich and to die for. I have not seen it since, but I will always have Moab, and I would even now go a long way out of my way to enjoy a healthy scoop of the compound.

That was the standard against which I judged this ice cream. Doomed from the start! I think B&J got a little cocky here. I think they believed that they could just throw in cheery little brownies with a little cheesecakey flavoring in them into something like sour cheesecake tasting ice milk and make an instant hit. Finishing it was a chore, but I was searching in every bite for it to get better. It will not be purchased again! Away from me! Next!...and bring me some Farr Strawberry Cheesecake ice cream please.

Muscle Men

We had been storing Dave and Laura's food storage for a couple of months while they bought a new house. It was the least we could do, since they stored ours for a year and a half while we were out of the country! Thursday night the boys helped load all of Dave and Laura's food storage into their moving truck. They hauled heavy boxes and buckets up the basements stairs for over an hour. I was pleased with their consistent hard work and willingness to serve.
Service had it's rewards too! Grandpa took the muscle men for a drive in his new Mustang convertible when the work was done. Sweet!

Daniel’s Mother

Last night, Daniel overheard me bemoaning the loss of a wing back chair we had been storing in our bedroom for Dave and Laura. The next thing I knew Daniel was bringing in a kitchen chair, with his pillow for me to sit on. Then he added a foot rest and a blanket and a goblet of water. He topped off the royal treatment with a back rub and fanning me with a handmade fan! When I thanked him for his kind service he replied, "Of course, your my Mom!" I tell you, Whistler's Mother never had it so good!

Milford Sound by Noreen

Our next stop was Te Anau. My siblings will remember this city for its beautiful lake, Chinese Restaurant and pink automated restroom! We had Chinese takeout the first night and it was as good as I had remembered.

That Wednesday we made the incredibly gorgeous drive to Milford Sound. The fields on the way to the sound were blanketed with beautiful lupin wild flowers. The view was so stunning that, even though we were running late, Steve finally said, "I can't stand it anymore!" and pulled over to take pictures.

We were now running dangerously late for our only chance to catch a boat to see Milford Sound. Most roads in NZ are one lane each way and always windy. I think this was the only time we ever drove over 100 kphs (about 60 mph) while touring. When we finally reached to dock, about the time the boat was ready to launch, the kids and I literally jumped out of the van before it had even come to a stop. Steve had to park about a mile away, while I picked up our tickets. We were boarding the boat, not sure it Steve would make it, when he sprinted onto the boat and we were off.

We enjoyed a breathtaking 2 ½ hour cruise along the fiord.

End of Issue 14