Last night, it was a balmy 48 or so. This morning, I woke up to ice and snow. Brrrr…. It has snowed on and off all day. Not much accumulation, but the temperature just keeps dropping.

Probably a good thing we got the windows in the guest house done yesterday too. With all that new glass, we are going to have a few feral cats get a rude awakening when they go to jump through what they think are “open” windows. It took 18 panes of glass to repair everything. Most of them were little 6×7 inch window bits. Only one was 15×15.

Dan harvested all the old glass he could first to repair the windows. We still had to buy 8 panes. It also took him nearly all day to repair everything. However, the guest house is better sealed than it has been in nearly two years.

Dan and Matt also hauled tons of garbage out of the guest house and garage. I think that there were 12 old dynamite boxes full of trash. Amazingly, the trash men took everything except the rug. Only reason they didn’t is because they were too full. Said they’d get it next week. Yahhh!!! Guess I’d better pay them!

We are driving this week. Jolene is in hospital again. More surgery on her leg where the break didn’t heal. ewwwww! So, we drive twice this week and twice next week.

At work, I’m starting the packets for chambership renewals. Wheee…. Finally got over to Mike so that he could read through what I wrote up. I did a lot of editing on the Chamber packet info. It needed it! The rest of this week and most of next will probably be spent printing packets, stuffing envelopes and dumping stuff off at the post office.

Oh, and tomorrow evening, we have parent teacher conferences. Dan, Morgan, Beth and I are going. Here’s hoping Divot behaves.

Boyz and Skunks

I haven’t had many boyz tales lately. However,… I have one to share.

The house on 520 is having skunk problems again. A month or so ago, it started showing up. Brandy barks, Tosoto hisses and on ocassion, we spend a night filled with the scent of …gag… skunk. To help drive the skunk away, Dan has been peeing on the fence at night to “mark the territory”. Our yard is very dark, so no one worries about this.

Keep in mind that the yard is dark…

Last night, Dan took Brandy out to do her stuff before bed. It’s cold, and stepping from a warm house to a cold backyard precipitated the inevitable. Dan had to go. So, he walked over to the fence where he’d been peeing and started to pee. Now, it’s dark and his eyes weren’t adjusted to the night, but… he saw a white patch and aimed for it. He was peeing away when he realized that the white patch moved. Figuring it was the pee making it move, he just kept peeing. About this time, his eyes adjusted and he realized that it wasn’t a piece of paper, but the SKUNK! He was peeing on it’s stripy little head!

Dan finished, zipped up, called the dog and ran into the house in record time. I came into the back part of the house to see what was wrong, and there’s Dan standing rather stiffly, eyes wide. I asked him what was wrong and he told me what had just happened. When he got to the point about peeing on the skunk, we both started laughing.

About ten minutes later, Dan walked to the back door, opened it slightly and shouted out to the yard, “And that’s what you get for disturbing a good night’s sleep!” in the general direction of where the skunk had been. As he walked back in, he looked at me laughing and then got this worried look on his face. Can you guess what he asked me?

“You aren’t going to blog about this are you?” he asked. I just smiled… Mwahahahahahaah!!!!

Snow, Trains and Volleyball games.

Sunday was cold.

Monday was cool.

Tuesday I woke up at 6:30am to see huge fat snow flakes outside. Brrrr! Since our vehicles are still down, I walked to work. It felt really funky to be so bundled up when the day before had been warm enough for no jacket.

Of course, the snow meant that I had very few people at the Chamber. I got a bit of work done, and by the time I was ready to go home, my mom decided to pick me up! Wheee!!!!

Wednesday was cold, but by mid afternoon, it was warm enough to carry my coat home. I even hung laundry outside! Today was warm too. You have to love Colorado weather. Or, just go crazy.We also got my car Divot up and running well enough to drive around town. Wheeee!!!

Considering the people I have had in the Chamber/Visitor Center this week, it must be Train Spotter month or something. I have had more people in asking about the station, and trains than anything else. In case I have forgotten to mention it, the Chamber is housed in the old train station in Walsenburg. It makes phone conversations really fun as the tracks are less than 20 feet from my office. My desk is right behind the left middle window in the picture below.

Walsenburg Station
Walsenburg Station
Another view of the Station
Another view of the Station

My problem is that I don’t know enough about the history of the train station and always feel bad when I have to say I don’t know. Oh, and we must have a beacon on top of the station saying, “train spotter here! No Trains Today!”.  Why? Well, on average, we have 40 trains a day pull through town. However, whenever I have a train spotter walk in, I have NO Trains go by. Like today. Quiet all morning, and this gentleman comes in asking about the station. I tell him what I know, including the train stats and the suspicion that there is some sort of consipiracy to keep people like him waiting to see trains. He laughs and goes off to have lunch. Right about 1pm, when all the locals are trying to get back to work after lunch, here comes a train. One of the long ones. I wondered if the train guy had seen it. Sure enough, he came in about 10 minutes later with a big grin on his face. He’d gotten lots of pictures and was very happy. He also told me that the station had been built for the Rio Grande Railroad, which was something I hadn’t know.

Tonight, we had to get to Gardner for Morgan’s Volleyball award dinner. We borrowed Jolene’s SUV and drove up. First though was the Mom-Daughter Volleyball game. Of course, we cheated. Dan played as well. We did pretty good. The first game was close. 25-24, and the girls won. Second game was 25-16. The girls were over the moon that they beat us twice. Afterwards, we had pizza for dinner and awards. Morgan got the most improved beginner on the team. All the girls got medals and certificates. It was a fun evening.

Tomorrow we are going to work on Blue, the old pick up truck, finish up the ‘winterizing’ of the guest house at 520 and then collapse for at least 10 minutes.

I’m not ready for this! Brrrr!!!

After lovely days of warm weather and the wind yesterday, I know I shouldn’t be surprised that it is cold today.

Woke up to gray skies and light breezes. It never got really warm, but by 11am, it was about 65F. Then, the clouds really rolled in along with thunder, lightning and rain. At first I thought the noise was the trains bumping cars. We can hear that fairly well even though the train yard is about a quarter of a mile away. Nope… Ten minutes later, there was no denying that the noise was thundery. Dan and I looked at each other, said “Tent!” almost simultaneously.

Heading for the back yard, we stuck the tent and dragged it to the front porch to dry. Brandy thought we were nuts!

Here it is four hours later and a chilly 43F! Brrrrr!!! Still raining, accompanied by rolls of thunder and flashes of lightning. I am so glad that we got Mike and Brittany headed south yesterday.

I keep trying to think of nice warm foods for dinner. Plus, I think I’ll pull out my knitting and watch a movie. Brrrrr!!!!

My braincells are blowin’ in the wind!

After an almost windfree four days, the “breeze” has returned. Sometimes upwards of 20 miles per hour. Leaves blowing everywhere as well as what little brain I have left.

After the hectic week of the Celtic Festival, I thought that things might calm down. Sort of a time to get back into a routine.  you can stop laughing any time now! It sort of happened. Working the whole school/homeschool/work/housework routines was just about there.

Thursday, (Oct 2nd), we had Jim Conley speaking at the chamber of commerce, telling us all about his time in Iraq with the USDA. Lots of slides, stories and conversation. It was my 1st event at the chamber and it went very well.

Saturday, I was suppose to go shopping with John, but he didn’t feel good. Dan went with me instead. We had car trouble and just barely made it home. That was not a fun trip. This means that at this point we have no vehicles that work. 🙁

I spent the week walking to work or using Jolene’s car. She got sick on Tuesday night so I borrowed her car to take Little Morgan to school. Now, this car situation wouldn’t be so frustrating except that I was due to go to a festival in Missouri at the weekend. Dan tried to figure it out between working on a brochure for the chamber of commerce and doing the other stuff he had on his schedule this week. Hectic and chaotic! Dan also spent 12 hours on Tuesday hauling shelves for the library from Colorado Springs to Walsenburg. He was exhausted.

Wednesday afternoon, I had a couple walk into the visitors center asking for help. They were trying to get home to Georgia, and had run out of money and gas literally at the chamber’s front door. Their car had broken down in Boulder, and the repair bill had tapped them out. Now, I’m not a sucker for a hard luck story, but it was obvious that these kids were in need. You could see it on their faces. So, I invited them into the office and gave them some water while I called around to see if anyone in town did travelers aide. They also wanted to know if they could sleep in the park. NO! No way!

I was amazed to find that there is NO travelers aide in this part of the state. The couple told me that they had asked in Denver and had been turned down. Even the churches. Compared to what they knew of in Georgia, they were astounded. The whole thing left me so frustrated that I made a decision. The guy had said he was a carpenter and willing to work for gas money. He had asked me if I knew of any jobs or places to get day labor. I thought about that and realized that I had two closets that needed drywalled and I had the money to pay him for his work. I also had no trouble having these two people stay at my house.

I called Dan and told him that he could come pick me up. He had Jolene’s car at that point, trying to work on the truck. I also told him that I was bringing home two strays. Dan asked me what kind of strays and I told him he would see when he got here. He figured I’d found another cat or dog, and he had that “I’m unhappy” tone in his voice. He knows I have a bad habit of collecting strays.

Dan showed up about five minutes later and was puzzled when he walked into the office to see two people. I explained and he had the same reaction I did. Take them home. When we got to 520, Dan and I talked privately. We went back to where Mike and Brittany were sitting and said that we knew they needed money, and we had a job for Mike if he wanted it. Two closets that needed drywalling. I don’t think it took him more than ten seconds to decide. Didn’t even ask what we would pay him. The only thing he did ask was were were the tools and drywall.

Brittany and I went to the store for some groceries and then we made supper. We talked about kids, work, etc. They have three kids, she’s a nurse and he’s a carpenter. They’d taken a month long camping vacation and were on their way home when the car died. Mike took a break to eat dinner and then worked until nearly 11pm.

Next morning, he was back to work before I even had a cup of tea! I went to work as Thursday night was the chamber board meeting. I came home for dinner and the closets were nearly done. Dan and I went to the meeting which was interesting, and when we got home around 8pm, they were kicked back on the couch watching tv and the closets were done. We still have to mud and tape them, but the hard part was done!

This morning, we borrowed their car to ‘go get my paycheck’. We did, but it also gave us a chance to fill up their tank. We cashed my paycheck, paid on our electric bill, bought some groceries and then headed home. I gave them some money and told them how to get ahold of Travelers Aide in Albuquerque, NM. Mike and Brittany were so tearful and grateful. Couldn’t believe that anyone would be so nice or helpful. how could I do any less? I wasn’t sure they could stop hugging and thanking us long enough to get out the door. They really are a sweet couple and hope to hear from them in the next day or two that they have made it home safe to Georgia. They were also impressed with Colorado, and may decide to return.

Meanwhile, I plan to see what can be done to get Travelers Aide going in this part of the state. Mike and Brittany aren’t an isolated pair. With the weather turning cold, they won’t be the last either. I find it interesting that two pagan ministers did more for them than all the christian ministers or churches in town.

Harps, wolves and coyotes

Yet another Festival story…

Thursday night at the Ceilidh in Gardner , Heather Yule was telling a story  about a harper who was out on the moors during a snow storm.

Heather was telling the story with harp accompaniment. The story was about this harper who was traveling from one town to the next across the moors when a snow storm hit. He went as far as he could before he couldn’t travel any further. So, he hunkered down by a large rock. As he was sitting there, he could see wolves coming across the moors towards him. They came right up to him even though he was playing his harp as discordantly as possible to scare them away. It didn’t work. One wolf came closer than the rest. The wolf held up his paw and showed the harper a huge thorn in his paw. The harper pulled it out and the wolves left. The harper made it to the next town once the storm let up.

The next spring, the harper was in a town market and was approached by a tall handsomely dressed man. The man greeted him and asked how he was. The harper said he was doing well, but was confused by who the man was and asked him. The man smiled and asked the harper if he remembered this, and held out his hand. On the hand, was a large scar right were the thorn had been in the paw on the wolf. The man had been turned into a wolf by a witch. The witch had driven a thorn into his hand and turned him into a wolf until someone pulled out the thorn. The man thanked him and walked away.

Good story, great harp! However, as Heather was telling the story, we were standing right in the open doorway. Behind us, we could hear a couple of coyotes started yipping and then howled! It was perfect accompaniment for her story! We were giggling and so was her husband.