Wednesday, October 1, 2008


It may take me awhile to get the new site set up.  Here's my new blog address:

I hope I can have it ready by Christmas.

It's been fun.

I'm not finished.

Please send me your link.  or



Sunday, September 7, 2008

Three years journaling

Happy anniversary to me....3 years journaling.

I have added a few paragraphs to my last entry.  I invite you to go back and read the new "banter".

One of my favorite days is approaching.  Enjoy.


Milo wanted me to remind all of our j-land buddies that September 19th is "Talk Like a Pirate Day".  It is even celebrated in the UK.  It's a fun thing to do and yes, most landlubbers will think you've lost all of your marbles.

For those of you who need help, here are a few words:

ARRGH - Part of speech: exclamation.  A pirates favorite word.  It can be used for anything.

AYE, AYE - Yes, Yes

GOBBLE - To eat in a fast, rude and noisy manner

GROG - A pirate's drink

Grub - Food of any kind  "come ye pirates!  It be time for grub!,  ARRR

Landlubber - Pirate talk for land lover.  A landlubber is a person who does not have the constitution to live aboard a ship.

Manners - Pirates are generally not aware of this concept!

Scallywags - Pirates who love mischief.

Smartly - Quickly

Swashbuckler - A well-dressed, dashingly handsome pirate


David and Milo

Monday, September 1, 2008

Odds and ends

Now I see how my head got sun-burned.  That's the log splitter behind me.

I will be spending every spare moment I have for the next month preparing for the upcoming winter.  We heat, mostly, with fire wood.  I like to have about 5 cords of wood cut and split by the 1st of October.  This weekend I started cutting wood.  I hope I will have the entire pile cut and ready to split by the 15th.

My neighbor, Doug, read my last entry when I discussed our enjoyable visit to his house and the delicious Brunch.  He responded.  I would like to share his comment with you.  I feel honored that he would allow me to reprint his words.

Good evening, David...
Many thanks for your wonderfully kind words in your blog about our brunch. You know we loved having you and Harry here and wished Janice could have come.
Every time anybody who lives up here comes to our house, the first thing I do when they leave is begin a thorough inventory. I have not quite completed the inventory from when you and the others were here a couple weeks ago. But, so far, so good. Remarkably little was stolen. One of our cars is missing but I think someone just got confused and will bring it back by year end. About $150,000 cash is absent but, again, my guess is somebody thought they had brought it with them and just took it home. Once they focus on it, I know they'll be embarrassed over this and they'll mail it back to me. The only other missing items, and of little import, is all the silver. However, in fairness, we might very well have mistakenly thrown it out with the trash in our haste to clean up after all you pigs.

My lovely wife, Janice responded with this missive:

Dearest Doug and Mary Ann,
So sorry to have missed the brunch that you so graciously hosted a couple of Sundays ago.  David and Dad had such a wonderful time.
I wanted to give you and Mary Ann a heads-up in hopes that you would keep an eye on our place over the next 3 weeks as David has surprised me with tickets for a cruise around the world.  He said he just stumbled on to some extra cash and wanted to spoil his little "cupcake".  Wow!  The new cars are coming next week and we are remodeling the kitchen - wow! How does he do it?  I didn't realize how well his band gigs were doing!  Well, time to pack - take care!  We'll miss you and will send postcards.  David mentioned that it was with support from you two that he made the big decision - thanks!
Doug then replied:
Dear Janice...
I'm so happy for you. In fact, I saw David a day or two after our brunch and he had a spring in his step that I had not seen before. He was positively ebullient. Plus, he was, frankly, a trifle too appreciative of being included on our guest list. One of his comments was maybe a little odd: "Doug, most of all, it was great that I got to look around your entire house by myself. Being alone and unobserved gave me a chance to, well, be alone and unobserved." I dunno. But people always are saying curious things. I didn't read anything into it then and don't now.
Anyway, you have a lot of exciting things on the horizon. There's probably nothing like an around the world cruise. While we have never done that, I took Mary Ann on a comparable trip in 1967. We went to Greeley, ate at the I-Hop and stayed at the Holiday Inn Express. I tell you, it was an experience for the ages. I'm sure you'll experience similar feelings. New cars and a kitchen remodel also are things I'm familiar with. I've never bought Mary Ann a new car but I recently got her a 1948 Nash with a bumper sticker: "I go from 0 to Bitch in 2.5 seconds." And while a kitchen remodel is out of the question here, I did buy her a really classy ice box last month.
David's sudden financial success is absolutely terrific. Perhaps when you all return from your trip, he can come over and have a cup of coffee. It will be a nice chance for him to meet and get to know the sheriff and the country attorney.
I then received a missive from my good friend and neighbor Susan, who stayed with Doug and Mary Ann while her house was being remodeled.  With her permission......
David, it's amazing after the neighbors wonderful hospitality in allowing me to stay at their house more than several times during my remodel that I was able to do a few more things than planned on my house. I too am able to afford a trip around the world now, but have a few more details to take care of around here to make it more comfortable. Then I'll start getting the plans ready to build a larger home which I never thought was possible.  

It is such a pleasure to have a neighbors with such a great since of humor.
Next Saturday will be very busy.  The annual Sunshine Fire Protection District fund raiser is being held at Fire house #2.  It is know as the Community fest.  I will post more in a separate post. 

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Where is it?

The detail is amazing.

While on my walk with Milo on Sunday, I peered up in a tree and was surprised at what I saw.  One of our neighbors made a bird house that looks just like the Sunshine school house.  I challenge my neighbors to find it's location. 

Speaking of neighbors, I wanted to mention that a couple of weeks ago we were invited to a Sunday brunch at Doug and Mary Ann's.  The event was totally delightful.  They have a beautiful view from their house, overlooking the mountains to the south of Sunshine.  Mary Ann has wanted to entertain for quite some time but Doug was against the idea.  You see, Doug was afraid we (the neighbors) would try to steal everything he owns....that thought still has me laughing.  You have to know Doug to enjoy his sense of humor.  Doug wrote for a national magazine with the initials SI.  His column was always a joy to read.  MaryAnn's choice of fair could not have been better.  The food was great and the guest list was tops (of course I would say that, I was included).  MaryAnn reads this journal so for you walked by the bird house this morning....did you see it?

Milo and I were excited to see the school bus last Monday morning.  Sitting behind the steering wheel was our friend, Bob.  Bob was not driving the Sunshine route last year.  He had a health issue that took him off the route for a while.  I waved and Milo ran up to the bus, not to be disappointed.  Bob had a treat for him.

Last weekend a group of about 20 of our neighbors gathered at Lori and Ruby's house.  We rallied to cut and split firewood for 2 1/2 hours.  Hopefully they will have enough wood to last the winter.  Please pray for Lori.

Smiles to you all,


Thursday, August 21, 2008

Friday afternoon club

Tim & Linda's home
Last evening Milo and I returned from our evening walk.  We stopped at the mailbox and checked for any notes and maybe, even some mail.  Hiding in the back of the mailbox was a half sheet of paper with a typewritten note.  It announced that our new neighbors, Tim and Linda, are having a "Friday Afternoon Club" at their house tomorrow night.  It looks like a lot of fun.  We engage in this activity at different homes, at different times, around the community.  We usually bring our own beverage and a snack to share.  Unfortunately, the band is playing at a party in Pinewood Springs (just outside Estes Park) tomorrow evening and we will miss the FAC.
Although she hasn't left me a comment in this medium, I know Linda reads this journal.  Linda, I feel honored that you read my notes about Milo and Sunshine.  By the way, if the house looks familiar, I made a post about it some time ago.
Keep smiling.
Milo and David

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Evening walk with Milo

Milo and I had a great walk this evening.  For about a year now I have had to keep him on a leash as we walked.  His mother (Shilo) has moved into our rental house.  Her owner does not leash her.  If both dogs are loose they bolt and run loose in the neighborhood for a couple of hours.  With all of the wildlife in the area, loose dogs are not a welcome sight.  This evening Shilo was gone.  I let Milo run loose.  He was such a good boy...he stayed with me.  I just wish he would help me fold the flag.
Speaking of the wildlife.... it is abundant.  As an example there is a mother deer and two fawns (still spotted), a mother bear and two cubs, many foxes, rabbits, chipmunks and squirrels.  The male deer have grown their full racks of antlers and are loosing their felt.  Our bird feeders are full.  The parents are still feeding their young but it won't be long until the young birds will start eating on their own.

One of our neighbors and a very, very close friend is in need of prayers.  Lori was diagnosed with cancer.  The good news is that it is treatable.  She starts her treatments tomorrow.  Although not an AOL member, please visit her:

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

And the party continues

Now that the alerts are turned back on, I am re-posting this entry.

This was the weekend for the Homebrew Hoedown.

Our neighbors sponsor this summer event.  If you will note the last band on the poster:  StarRoute!  That's our band.  We'll be playing at 5-6:30.  It's a fun event. (It's right next door to our house so I guess I'll be spending the evening enjoying the music, one way or the other..hehe)  And the Summer party continues....


This thing goes on from 3 in the afternoon until 11 at night.

For those who don't want to drive home, there is plenty of room to camp overnight.

What can I say????  We all have fun.

Next on the official Sunshine Agenda:  September 6th is the Sunshine Community Fest and September 27-28 is th Sunshine Craft & Bake Sale.

Saturday, August 2, 2008

And the summer continues...

Phil inside the Snowbound Mine

Milo and I arose for an early breakfast and then took our usual morning walk.  This morning we pulled out the large (4'X6') cotton flag.  We only fly it on special occasions like Sundays, holidays and funeral days.  Today it is flying at half-staff until noon in honor of our friend and neighbor, Phil Hannum.  Phil, like myself, was a native of Wyoming.  During his working career, he was a real estate developer.  Phil died recently and his memorial service is this afternoon (4PM).  The service is being held at the Snowbound Mine.  Phil has owned the mine for many, many years.  It was a project he held near and dear to his heart.  The Snowbound was an active gold mine up to the time it locked it's doors in 1935 .  All the mining was closed down in order to move all the resources to the war effort.  When you walk into the building, it looks just like it did in 1935. 

The calendar hasn't been touched and all of the working clothes are still hanging on their hangers.  Phil's dream was to turn it into a museum.  Rest peacefully Phil.


Upcoming events are brunch at Doug and Mary Ann's house (tomorrow), the Arts and Crafts fair at the school house and then the community fest at the fire house.  I'll post the dates soon.

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Sunday happy hour

Hey everybody!  I just received this email from the flute player in the band.  Vic's in town from his Morristown hide-a-way so we have a bass player.  You might as well join us.  The entire community of Sunshine will hear us.  We'll see how work goes on Monday. 

Hey everybody, let's have a Sunday PotLuck HappyHour!
When:      Sunday July 27 - 4 - dark
Where:    Spencers 1254 County Road 83
What:      Music open mike - assorted beers and beverages - Pot Luck Hors D'oeuvre
What else:  Bring an instrument (french horn, trombone, Gretch single cutaway hollow body electric guitar, banjo) a drink you like or a dish to share, sunglasses, and no dogs.
Dogs:       No dogs, unless they're hot dogs or corn dogs or Elvis Presley style Hound Dogs
Who:       You, your friends, your visiting relatives from New Jersey, your neighbors
Safety:   Always be safe - wear helmets, goggles and reflective outerwear - be safe!
 OK...Tracy wants to see some pictures, after the fact.  Here they are.
The party begins!
The Kids having fun.
I know they are not all democrats.
The mayor, Chris and John, a band member enjoying a cool one.  Remember this picture for when I talk about our mayor.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Potluck dinner

It's that time of year again!

Sunshine Schoolhouse Annual Potluck
Saturday, July 19th
6:00 to 9:00
Bring a dish to share plus your own plates, cutlery, and beverages

Saturday, July 5, 2008

July 4th Wedding

Four years ago my oldest son built a volleyball court as an Eagle Scout Project.  The area has evolved into a small community recreation area with the volleyball court, horseshoe pit, swing set, sand box and picnic tables.  The community of Sunshine has used it for games, picnics and a quiet area for meditation.

Yesterday (July 4th), around 2PM a bunch of cars started arriving and parking around the school house.  I figured a wedding or something because the school was all decked out with flowers and buckets of beverages on ice.  To my surprise, everybody parked at the school house but headed up the hill to the volley ball court.  Not being invited, and hating to be a party crasher, I avoided the crowd and went about my business. 

This morning, curiosity got the best of me, so Milo and I took our walk.  We raised the flag and then walked up to the volley ball court.  Much to my surprise, here is what I found.

I found out that a couple who used to rent one of the houses in Sunshine so loved the neighborhood that they wanted to get married here.  It must have been a fun wedding.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008


SCSSYYSR---Sunshine Canyon Summer Solstice YaYa Sisterhood Reunion.  An annual event of old friends, all who use to live in the same mountain community of Sunshine, Colorado.  Most have moved away.

Last weekend the family and I celebrated the summer solstice with our friends in the northern mountains of Colorado.  This event has become an annual event.  I posted about the 2006 and the 2007 event.  Janice's brother, Dennis and his wife, Suzi flew in from Hawaii.  The rest drove in from Utah and Colorado.  Most of the folks there read this journal;  I was reminded that I need to post more often.  Here are a few photos.

John, Harry, Bob and Lester ready for the white elephant gift exchange.

Our host's Dale and Terry leveled their old mountain cabin and built a beautiful home on the same foot print.  We still treat their home as if it is a cabin hiding in the forest.  They are off the grid and rely on solar power.  The house filled up and many of us camped out in our tents

My oldest son, Nate setting up his tent.

We had some fun games to play.....Kube and Wacky Ball.

Harry and Dennis playing Wacky Ball.

I can't wait till next year.

Is that a fish in the hot tub?

Dale and I discussing the world's problems (or deciding who will get the next haircut)

Thegame court

They say smoke follows beauty so I got up and moved.

The family enjoying "Ingabobs"

Bob had a comment about Chris' story and Bernie.  I was told that Bernie went back to the east coast 22 years ago.  Bob informed me that it had to be more.  Bernie was gone when Bob and Bebee moved away from Sunshine and that was 24 years ago.  The freezer has been buried and Bernie is still not back.  Ellen, have you seen Bernie and the prune juice posse on the LIE?

Smiles to all,

Sunday, June 1, 2008

Found ear ring and our hero, Butch

Yesterday was one of those days that is remembered for a long time.  Milo and I started out our walk as usual.  It was Saturday and Milo suggested that I fly the large garrison flag instead of the smaller 3' X 5' flag.  I agreed with Milo and we hoisted the much larger (5' X 8') flag.  Just as I was finishing, one of the neighbors stopped to say hello.  I lost my concentration and pulled a little too hard on the rope.  The rope became entangled and it was stuck.  I couldn't move it.  I was afraid the flag was going to fly high on the pole for eternity.  There were two more immediate issues.  The first was that the flag should not be flown after sundown unless illuminated.  I wasn't ready to stand out there with a flashlight all night.  I couldn't because the band was playing at Ruby's birthday party that evening.  The second issue had to do with Donna's memorial service.  Her service is today.  I usually fly the flag at half-staff for the morning and then raise it to full-staff at noon on the day of the service.  It is a hard thing to do with a stuck flag.  Butch came to our rescue.  This morning he leaned a 40' ladder up against the flag pole and climbed all the way to the top.  He freed the flag.  He is our hero.  Now I have to find a case of beer or a 5th of Beam for our buddy.


On our walk this morning Milo and I found an ear ring in the road.  For my Sunshine readers, please let me know if you know the owner.

Just another reminder about the Flap Jack Fling next Sunday.  It should be a beautiful Spring morning.



Monday, May 26, 2008

Flapjack Fling

Sunshine Firehouse Flapjack Fling

           Sunday, June 8th, 9 - 10:30 a.m.

Pancakes - Bacon - Sausage - Coffee - Tea - Juice

            Adults - $6, Kids under 12 - $4

           Community Meeting - 10:30 a.m.

   Fire Station 2 at 5880 Sunshine Canyon Dr.

                       Open to the public

    Please join the Sunshine Fire Department and Team Sunshine

                  for our 3rd Annual Pancake Breakfast!

       We will begin a community meeting at 10:30 a.m. to discuss

                             SFPD matters of interest.

                                                Please, no dogs

                      Hosted by Team Sunshine

                                     Building a Stronger Sunshine Community


Friday, May 23, 2008

out of the woodwork

I'm sure our Sunshine community is no different than a lot of communities around the country.  As the weather warms up, people start to leave the confines of their houses and move outdoors.  Milo and I are seeing many of our neighbors on our evening walk.  It is such a joy to see so many smiling faces and to meet the new puppy dogs that have joined the neighborhood.  The warmer weather is also bringing on lots of events.  On Memorial Day weekend, Boulder celebrates the Creek Festival.  It is always a fun event with many, many vendors, art exhibits, rides and lots of fun things to do.  It will be interesting for me.  The map store is just across the street from Central Park, the site of the festival.  I hope I can get to work on time.

The band is playing twice around the 1st of the month.  We will be helping celebrate Ruby's 80th birthday.  The party is at her house on the 31st.  Our next gig is June 5th at the Outlook Hotel in Boulder.  7-10PM   Be there!  Mention my name and they will let you in for FREE!!!!!

Other news....We still have not seen the Prune Juice Posse.  Maybe they are lost on the Pennsylvania Turnpike.

Our community support group, Team Sunshine, is now the official "adopt a road" litter collectors for County Road 83.  The county put up a nice sign announcing that fact.  The orange bag is full our our newly collected trash.

The other good news is that fire station #1 is totally rebuilt.  The finishing touches were completed this week. 

Sunshine Fire Department, along with Team Sunshine will be hosting our annual breakfast the first Sunday in June.  I'll post more on that event shortly.

Finally, There will be a volleyball game and picnic on Memorial Day at the community volleyball court located behind fire station #2 (actually between the two fire stations).  Bring your own beverage and a dish to share.  Activities will begin around 1PM.

Keep smiling, hug your love ones, and tell someone you love them.



Thursday, May 15, 2008

Mixed news

There is mixed news coming out of Sunshine on this eve of my 60th birthday.  At the end of my last entry, I asked for some prayers.  The good news is that Mary's procedure was successful.  We are expecting to see her smiling face walking with us in the mornings.

Now the sad news.  We lost our good friend and neighbor, Donna, yesterday morning.  She will be greatly missed.  She kept her smile and held her head high as she passed with great dignity.  I will fly the flag at half-staff in her honor until Monday.

 Hug your loved ones and tell them that you love them.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Bernie's coming home


Bernies house.

The other evening I arrived home early from work.  It was cool, but not cool enough to send me directly into the house.  Janice's car was parked out in front of the house so I knew she was home.  I opened the front door to a very happy puppy dog.  Milo jumped up and down.  He was wagging his tail so hard and fast, he cleaned everything off the top of the coffee table.  One swipe sent the TV remotes and the Kleenex box flying to the floor.  I looked around the house and could not find Janice.  It was so nice outside, I figured she went for a walk.  I put Milo on his lease and we headed out the door.

Milo and I turned left at the bottom of the driveway and headed up the hill.  I could hear voices and laughter toward Chris' (our mayor) house.  Sure enough, as Milo and I approached, we could see Janice, Steve, Dee, Linda and Chris, sitting in lawn chairs, cold beers in hand.  I knew everyone was having a very good time.  I was wondering if I should join them.  I am not much of a drinker.  Chris has a reputation.  Chris likes to entertain and always has plenty of beer, etc.  If you stop, you will be offered a drink. It would be rude to turn it down.

Chris can be one of the funniest guys you will ever meet.  The only problem is that you never know when he is serious or telling a tall tale.  Milo and I decided to join the conversation.  Chris was telling us a story.  He has a next door neighbor named Bernie.  Bernie has lived in Sunshine for many, many years.  He was raised in Connecticut but moved here so long ago that one can remember the year he arrived.  Bernie must be in his 80's now.  He has invested in property and owns three houses.

A while ago, Bernie went back to Connecticut to visit his parents.  They were getting quite old and ailing.  Not planning on being gone for long, Bernie stocked up on fire wood for the upcoming winter and filled the freezer with lots of meat.  Up here, you never know when you will get snowed in.  He made arrangements for Chris to collect his rents and make the deposits.  He also asked Chris to check in on his place and to make sure everything was in good order until he returned.  Chris loaded Bernie and his suitcase into his Ford Ranchero.  The two then headed east.  Chris delivered Bernie to his parents' house and returned to Sunshine a week later.

Last month Chris received a call from Bernie.  His parents have passed and he is planning on returning home.  He has already tried to return once with a couple of his buddies from Connecticut.  Chris calls them the "prune juice posse".  Evidently the prune juice posse made a  wrong turn and got lost on Long Island.  They turned around and went back to Connecticut.

If you are like the rest of us, you are asking yourself, "I wonder how long has Bernie been gone?"  Twenty two years.  Yes, Chris has been collecting rents and making deposits for Bernie for twenty two years.  Now, what about the house?  Chris went over to check on the interior.  He opened the front door and was repelled back by the smell.  Chris quickly closed the door and went home.  He poured himself a couple of shots of booze and pondered on what could be causing the terrible odor

He gathered up his nerve and returned to Bernie's.   He poured two more shots and walked the short distance to Bernie's side door.  He peered through the door and noticed a brown ooze under the freezer.  It seems the freezer quit working and the chest full of frozen meat, twenty two years, was now thawed.  Chris returned home and had two more shots.  He figured he had better make sure it was the freezer and the brown ooze causing the stench.  He took one more shot and went next door.  He took a deep breath and opened the door.  While holding his breath,he lifted the lid to the freezer, looked inside, closed the lid and ran outside.  Sure enough, the freezer was no longer working.

Chris knew he had to act fast.  The bears are coming out of hibernation in the next week of two.  Hungary, they would be attracted to the smell.  Bernie and his prune juice posse' were soon going to make a second attempt to travel west again.  The only thing that seemed logical was to seal the freezer, or should I say the contents of the freezer.  Chris made a trip into town and stopped at Home Depot.  There he picked up some bags of premixed concrete.  After stopping at his house for a couple of shots, he went to Bernie's to address the situation.  He held his breath and opened the door.  He lifted the premix concrete and carried it into the stench filled house.  He lifted the lid to the freezer and poured the contents of the bag into the freezer.  He repeated this several times, taking a couple of shots between each venture.

The smell has subsided and now.  He is looking for some brave soul to help him move the freezer out of the house.



I am asking for some prayers for some special people, both Sunshine neighbors.  Mary and Donna.


Smiles to all,


Thursday, April 3, 2008

Springtime in the Rockies

Sunshine Fire Station #1 nearing completion.

The weather is reminding us that it is Spring.  We received 3" to 4" of snow last night and it melted before I arrived home from work.  We had rain, snow, fog, blue sky, lighting and thunder all in one day.

Milo and I did not walk this morning.  The road was just a little too muddy.  I did stop and raise the flag.  The neighbors are getting use to seeing the flag again.  When we moved out of day-light savings last fall, I would not raise the flag if I could not get home before darkness.  That is not an issue now.

Work is keeping me very busy.  Too busy!  I am finding it hard to sit down and write.  I'm trying to read everybody's journal but gosh....I could spend all day on line.

Please keep Donna and Mary in your prayers.

A couple of calendar notes.  The Rockies play their home opener tomorrow.  My father-in-law is returning from Arizona tomorrow.  He's been gone most of the winter. And...the band is playing at the Outlook Hotel tomorrow night.  Keep the kids off the street.

I am a proud father today.  My oldest son, Nate was just accepted into the school of music at the University of Colorado. His education continues.

Best wishes to all.

"The best sermons are lived, not preached."



Monday, March 3, 2008

After the feed

deserts anybody?

We had a full house at last nights Spaghetti feed.  That came as a surprise to many of the members of Team Sunshine, our community support group.  As most of the nation has, or is, experiencing, the weather was in the 70's on Saturday and then turned to snow overnight.  Sunday found us with about 6" - 8" of snow on the ground.  Many of wondered how the weather might affect the turnout for the meal.

Serving line

By the end of the night, all the tables were full.

"Nate the Great" preformed magic tricks to the enjoyment of all.



Monday, February 25, 2008

Second Annual Community Spaghetti Feed

Second Annual Community




Spaghetti – Salad – Garlic Bread

Desserts & Soft Drinks Provided


Please Bring you own Bottle of Wine


Sunday, March 2

5:00 to 7:30 pm


Fire Station #2

$7.00 per adult, $4.00 per child

Maximum $20 per family



Family Fun Night

Magic Show starring

“Nate the Great”



no Chris, this Nate is not my son.


Last years announcement

Proceeds go to the Sunshine Fire Protection District

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Goodbye to Malcom

Malcom 1993 - 2008

We lost our beloved Malcom on the first of this month.  She will be missed.  She came to us when she was one, pregnant and full of love (8 lovely puppies). She have given the whole family nothing but love and attention.  She was the alpha dog in the house.  Milo misses her.  He still waits for her at the top of the stairs at night.  They use to "go to bed" with a treat, together, every night.  Janice and I were with her when she took her last breath.  It was one of the hardest things I have ever experienced.

Last weekend Jan and I went to Estes Park for a get-a-way weekend.  Estes Park, Colorado is nestled in the Rocky Mountains, west of Loveland, Colorado just a short 30 miles north of our home.  Even though it is winter, we found some fun things to do.  We dined at the Estes Park Brewery and sampled several beers.  My first visit to Estes Park was in the summer of 1959 for Boy Scout camp.  On the north edge of the community is the famous Stanley Hotel.  It is the hotel where Stephen King got the inspiration for his book, The Shining.  It was the location for the filming of the TV show of the same name and the movie Dumb and Dumber.  Even though I have visited the town for almost 50 years, other than when our band played there this last fall, I had never been inside the Stanley.  We took the haunted ghost tour.  We learned all of the stories about the Stanley's founders and all of it's famous guests. It was quite an experience.  I encourage you to click on the link and go for a quick visit.  Stanley Hotel

Have a great week.  I'll try to capture a picture of my "snow drag" for my nest post.



Sunday, January 27, 2008

Happy Birthday to my sweetheart

August '83

I have been married to my beautiful wife for almost 25 years.  She knows me well and it's pretty hard to pull off a surprise.  Her birthday is coming up in a couple of days.  It's a milestone and she doesn't want to make a big deal out of it.  She knew I would want to do something.  She planned a weekend for two next weekend in Estes Park, Colorado, just a few miles to the north of Sunshine, assuring that I would not throw a surprise Birthday party.  We will be enjoying a quiet weekend together, away from friends and family.

I knew her friends and family would want to share their best wishes so I went ahead and planned something anyway.  Several weeks ago I started planning a surprise party.  Our Sunshine neighbors, Steve and Dee offered their house as a location for the event.  We set the date for last night, January 26th, 7PM. (You understand I couldn't have shared this until today or it wouldn't be a surprise.)  I sent out e-mail invitations and started making the arrangements.  Several neighbors volunteered to help.  We had to work very hard to keep it quiet for I knew if Jan found out about it she would not attend (She's really not a party pooper).

I casually mentioned that the band was going to have a drinks and a meeting on Saturday night, then dropped the subject.  On Tuesday Dee called and invited Jan to join and to bring a Veggie plate.  "Be there at 6:30 sharp" Dee told her.  We figured it would be better if the guests arrived after we were settled in with a drink or two.  All went as planned.  We were all sitting around chatting when several neighbors showed up at 7:05.  Our neighbor, Mary came in the front door and wished Jan a "Happy Birthday".  Jan looked as surprised as I have ever seen her.  Within a half an hour over 30 guests arrived.  Wane and Hildegard were out of town so Hildegard baked one of her famous cakes (White cake with a fruit filling, covered in chocolate and dressed with strawberries).  Mary baked a cheesecake and a carrot cake.  Almost everyone brought a snack tray to share.  Our two son's, Mike and Nathan joined us. There was plenty of wine, beer, soda pop and iced tea to go around.  We sang "Happy Birthday" and engaged in friendly conversation.  Before long 3 hours had passed and we all tired.  It was a wonderful evening in Sunshine.

Remember as my old friend Texas Bix Bender said "If you get to thinkin' you're a person of some influence, try orderin' somebody else's dog around." 



Saturday, January 19, 2008

Hunting for Christmas trees

Rob's new Colorado Blue Spruce trees planted among his older Ponderosa Pine.

My neighbor, Rob, has a beautiful house just off Sunshine Canyon Drive.  The view from his house is breathtaking.  To the east you see Denver and the cities along the front range.  At night, it is a sight to behold with the city lights stretching from north to south.  To the west is the continental divide including the Sawtooth range and the Indian Peaks Wilderness area.  The snow capped mountains are worth a photo opportunity any time of the year.

The only drawback is that his house is just yards off of the main road.  Rob has tried to minimize the noise and light pollution by planting a couple of lines of evergreen trees.  These trees have given him privacy from the noisy vehicles as they pass by.  They have worked very well.

Last fall, Rob planted a new row of 5' to 6' Colorado Blue Spruce trees at the entrance of his driveway.  I admire them every time I pass by his house.  Two weeks before Christmas, I noticed one tree missing. 

I saw Rob in the post office last week. I asked him about the missing tree.  I thought someone had run into it, being it was so close to the road.  Rob told me that some one had cut it down, thinking it might make a very nice Christmas tree.  It must have been a new comer from California.

"Always take a good look at what you're about to eat.  It's not so important to know what it is, but it's critical to know what it was."