Archive for June, 2010

Keep On the Sunny Side, Always on the Sunny, Keep on the Sunny Side of Life

June 29, 2010

Our Viking Protector

Our Always Smiling Buddy

The fellow on the left is Eric the Red, and the man on the right is the Man in the Sun.  Great smile, and it never leaves him.  Always bright and cheerful, no matter what is going on. 

He is a bit worn, and has lost the right side of his halo, but nonetheless, he keeps smiling.
On the left side of things, our Maui Warrior, or, Eric the Red, may need a bit of a hair cut, but none-the-less he does his job without complaint, requests for more pay or a needed rest.  No doctors appointments.
It is good to have a protector unflinching and steadfast,  and a buddy smiling always.
I took Liam, our male puppy Standard Schnauzer, out for a run in the agility yard.  A few minutes latter he scampered under the picket fence and bolted for the back deck.  The gate there was closed, he turned and made a beeline for the garage door, which was open; he ran in, ran up the stairs to the laundry room, and promptly checked out Cathy’s sandals.  He looked back briefly and I knew he was not stopping for me.
So I guess tomorrow Chris and I will be putting in some temporary wire fencing at the bottom of the picket fence.  Remember the Caddy Shack?  I can see it coming.
Fare well, and good night.
PS: Chris and I stumbled through a 102 temperature day and made more progress on the front ‘patio’.

102 in the car


Rocks for the Rockpile

June 27, 2010

Finished the White Stone Path

Tomorrow, tomorrow, I can’t wait, for tomorrow.  When Chris is here.  The fan in the left side is a welcome addition.  Tomorrow Chris begins filling the left and right sides of this labor of love and lunacy with river rock, six and one half (that’s 6 & 1/2) tons.  Also known as 13,000 pounds.

This new place will be nice for morning coffee and a perch to watch the guys cut the lawn and keep track of  the black and white woodpecker.

A few months ago I dropped 35 pounds (275 to 240 I hate to say) in order to get my numbers down, and get rid of some medications.  I succeeded in dropping blood pressure medication.  I’ve now gained about 12 pounds, 252 this morning, but I’m planning on this summer work, and a good breakfast of oatmeal or eggs, a sandwich and cold soup for lunch, and a  salad of sorts for dinner to help me lick (bad word) this weighty issue.

My problem has and is what happens around 9 or 10 P.M.   All hell breaks loss while watching the old TV or, for that matter, the new TV, when and where I am bombarded with luscious looking lobster, sinful steaming steaks and 2,000 calorie barbeque chicken salads.  It is a test of self-control.  So, I conclude, the biggest advantage of using the internet in lieu of Television is the absence of those abominable advertisements.  However, this does not include Jennifer’s show, Chase. 

So I’m on my way back to the old weight of 220, I trust.  This will make Cathy happy, and me richer.


River Rocks, River Rocks and more River Rocks

June 27, 2010

1 to 3 Inch StoneProgress with 3/8 inch stone

Holy mackerel this stuff is heavy.  And never get it delivered on a tarp.  It is impossible to shovel it into a wheelbarrow.  And you have to wash it where it sits, not in your bed on the grey mat you see in the picture to the right.  It is covered with mud when delivered. 

Progress with 3/8 inch stone

My solution is to use a 4 prong garden tool to rake it into an egg crate, wash it in the porous crate, then put the crate into a garden trailer and pull the trailer with the lawnmower. 
And let Chris Kolonich do more of the work.  Chris is the 15-year-old son of Terry Kolonich who works at KMO.
I am enjoying the result and dreading the next stone.  In the old days I’d put out a keg or case of Heineken, but now its water.  So I can’t drown my cares and woes away no mo’. 
I like being alive and my son Paul, who does a lot of stone work and has done some magnificent  and ponds, says “Dad it will get easier as the work goes on”.  “Yeah”, I said, “as long as I make it to the end”.
It’s going to 100 today and tomorrow in balmy southern Jersey.

Check Out These Smiling Faces

June 26, 2010

Jill and Stephen, Owners of Sweet LIfe
Ariana, AAA+ Barista

These folks were hopping this morning at the Sweet Life Bakery in Vineland NJ, my home town.  I had a double espresso, made expertly by Ariana, and brought home a box of muffins and cake.

It is a very nice welcoming environment with plenty of window to the outside and to the inside cold kitchen.  The hot kitchen is in another area of the shop.  Jill and Steve were good enough to take a second, literally all they could spare, to let me take the picture.
Have a good day, and you might like to try the Hot Havana Nights coffee either at The Sweet Life Bakery web site, or mine.
And try their espresso too.

103 Degrees in Philadelphia June 24, 2010

June 25, 2010


The camera was hidden when the outside temperature showed 103, so you will have to trust me and Cathy.  If you look closely at the picture you’ll see we were on 95 headed to the Commodore Barry Bridge on our way home from Bellwood, Pa, where we picked up our new pup, Liam, a male Standard Schnauzer.  

Don’t we live at the right time?  Air-conditioning.  But my goodness there are a lot of us.  Maybe all the traffic added to the temperature on the highway. 

Drink lots of iced coffee.  Try it black over ice.  It is a refreshing drink that cools you off and stays with you. 


Our Standard Schnauzer Liam is Home Again

June 24, 2010

Crooning on June 24-2010
Liam’s Ride Home – Picture of Contentment

This is the picture of contentment.  On his back, mouth open, feet extended.  On the ride home from Bellwood today he slept most of the way. 


Home on the 'Range' - the kitchen floor

He is at this moment resting after his dinner and a run to the outside.  In one end out the other. 

It is just terrific to have Liam home again, and in good spirits.

I’m thinking about another name, like a Humphrey Bogart famous saying.



Porch Rocking Chairs and Standard Schnauzers

June 24, 2010

1000 Words


 Cathy and I have been doing some semi-serious landscaping around the house, literally.  We spotted these at the local, did I write local?, Lowes.  And we grabbed them.  Cathy has been looking for black rocking chairs since we moved here in 2003.  You’d think we were semi-retired.  



 I’m about 1/3 the way toward getting stones in the stone garden.  This is hard work.  Soon.  The matching glider was a must.  

Oh give me a home where the deer don’t roam and the birds and the squirrels all play.  Where seldom is heard the roar of a car and there’s no cloud in the sky over thar. 

I love my wife and my home and my work, and Arthur.  See you in Virginia. 

Right now we are in Bedford, Pa.  Fairfield Inn.  Tomorrow we pick up Liam, our spanking brand new Standard Schnauzer pup, who will join me on the glider and rocking chair.  Big day.




Where are the Humming Birds, Wood Peckers, Hawk’s and Bees and Flowers

June 22, 2010

Tears on the Flower

This beauty is on our back porch.   There is something very peaceful about sitting and listening to the wind and a small water fall, the wind, blowing leaves and watching bees fly to and fro.  Both Cathy and I have noticed the absence of birds this year.  Humming birds only one, woodpeckers, none.  We think it may be the hawk that we see circling high about the trees.  Perhaps the birds have sounded the alarm.  We set out hummingbird ‘juice’ and some attractive flowers, and feeders and I hope they show up.

I was driving to the Monday night Jam at Leo’s house tonight thinking about man and the environment and I was saddened by the thought that humans had somehow effected the number or migratory pattern of the birds we normally see.  Their absence hurts and worries us.  There was recently an article about the birds that migrate from South America to Alaska to mate that annually stop in our town to feed on the annual horseshoe crab ‘run’.  The horseshoe crabs lay millions of eggs on the Delaware Bay shores and these birds knew of the egg stash and would stop here to feed.  They did not come this year.  First time.  Not normal and not good, I fear.

There is so much beauty in nature, and so much complexity and relationships that we are just beginning to fathom.  Take care.


It is Good to be Remembered

June 19, 2010

Paul, Michelle, Mags, Jake, Marli and Luke

Yesterday, Paul was literally knocked out by a flying sledge-hammer head.  You know, emergency room and all that stuff.  This morning Jennifer was on her way to work and we shared a very caring moment.  Jenn works very hard.

Jennifer, Jeff and Ingrid

I am fortunate to have children who are successful.  I don’t mind at all being the nut who helped get them going.  I remember both precious moments. 
And thank them both for being here.  I love you Jennifer and Paul.

The Bright Side – No Problem – Yellowstone Geyser – Let It Be

June 16, 2010

Look on the Bright Side - A New Geyser

 The Beatles wrote of Mother Mary coming to themselves “whispering words of wisdom”.  Well here’s an example.  This Geyser is a lot closer to home than Yellowstone.   And I can make it go off.  Beautiful, yes.

“Pack up all your cares and woes …”


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