Archive for November, 2008

Peeping Mooses are Baaaaack!

Friday, November 21st, 2008

Friday afternoons are usually fairly lazy around the Leo house (as are all days). So we decided naps were in order. I was woken up by a small sound outside. I rolled over to look out the sliding glass door (4 feet from our bed) only to see a full grown moose about 1 foot from the window looking in. YIKES! “Jenny,” I whispered in an urgent voice, “Look out the window.” Jenny gasped and started sliding out the other side of the bed and I followed closely behind. We scrambled for safety in the closest door to the bed… So, here we are crawling into the closet when the moose started walking away (probably laughing). She was followed by a very young (only 6 feet tall) baby moose. Maybe she was just a proud momma showing off her newborn to the neighbors. Someone is going to have to teach her some manners.

Here’s momma coming around the house. Mind you the floor of the porch is 9 feet off the ground.


I got a shot of baby from our guest bedroom window.


Here’s a shot of them in the yard. Baby is on the ground and momma is playing hide-and-seek with the cameraman.


Observations of Small Town Living (OOSTL)

Friday, November 21st, 2008

Fleas, a girlfriend, a ball, and an occasional bone — Thinks your dog might bring home. In rural America, this is taken to a different level. Here’s a clip from our newspaper police blotter.


Oh, and while we’re at it, get a load of that address number in the 911 hangup listing. Yes, many people live at a 6-digit address.

Our first landscaping project

Wednesday, November 19th, 2008

17 Years! That’s how long we lived in a townhouse. And as everyone knows, you don’t get to do stuff to your yard that might “disrupt the harmony of the neighborhood” (A phrase I remember well as President of our town home association). But here, anything goes. If you want to rip up your yard and put in a little walkway, fine. If you want to take two months to finish, fine. Thankfully, I haven’t left any engine blocks in my yard yet. As our first official landscaping project, we needed a walkway to our back door. Digging the trench took a long time because I had to do it with a pick ax because of all the rocks that hide just beneath the surface (these are the rocky mountains after all). We bought the bricks on line and got over twice what we needed for $100 less than retail. So, with the left overs, we’ll be making a circular fire pit next spring along with several other projects.


Submarines in Idaho?

Tuesday, November 18th, 2008

Outside of Idaho, it’s a little known fact that lake Pend O’Reille is a government submarine test facility. Once a secret, the Navy actually created rumors of a sea monster to quell the locals who saw “something moving really fast through the water”. They’ve been testing subs here since 1942. How would you like to be fishing when this thing pops up?


The “Seajet” is only 133-feet long. One quarter scale prototype of the final stealth vessel that it represents. I’ve yet to see any subs in action, but the locals near the navel station have. Hmmm, I wonder if they give tours?

Creative Expression

Saturday, November 15th, 2008

It’s been a while since I’ve had the chance to do much design work. I did get to exercise a little creativity designing our church sports logo. What a shock to show up on game night and all the team players had my design on their uniforms. Here’s what the logo looks like along with a very nice shot of the girls volleyball team.
kootenai-thunder-02.gif volleyball.jpg

Turkeys aren’t what they used to be

Saturday, November 15th, 2008

Turkeys aren’t what they used to be. When I was growing up, dad and other hunters had stories about turkeys being a very challenging animal to shoot. There was almost a mystique surrounding the idea of seeing a wild turkey. Not so with the “Sevens”. That’s the last name of the turkey family that has taken up residence on or near our property. We named them that a few months ago when a momma turkey and seven little ones began roaming our property foraging for food. Over the last few months the little puffs have grown into rather large beastly ravenous creatures. We now see them about twice a day. They have a particular appreciation for clover. In exchange for pooping on our walkway, they do a great job of clearing out all the clover that has grown up between the rocks that decorate part of our yard. It’s clear that Thanksgiving is in November right about the time when Turkeys are full grown. We’re not sure if they’ll survive Thanksgiving, or even the winter, but we’ll be watching.


Observations of Small Town Living (OOSTL)

Saturday, November 15th, 2008

Radio announcer, “No News Today. Mike Brown is on vacation.” You see, Mike is the local news guy at 1400 AM radio in Sandpoint. Apparently nobody can do the news like Mike can. And when Mike is on vacation, at news time, they don’t have anyone who can read the news. Not even the guy reading the announcement that Mike is on vacation. Go figure! The station slogan goes like this, “You can read about it tomorrow, or hear about it right now”. A reference to the local paper which competes for new stories. I guess they need to change that to, “You can read about it tomorrow, or hear about it right now, unless Mike is on vacation.”

Nov. 5th – First Snow!

Saturday, November 15th, 2008

The white stuff started falling in the higher elevations on Nov. 5th. We didn’t actually get any on our property until November 11th. All of which is now melted and gone. The last task was getting Jenny’s studded tires on her car for the winter. Hopefully this winter will be a little easier than last.

Looking out off the deck you can see the yellow larch trees. These trees lose their needles in the winter. If you’re not careful, you’ll mistake them for dead as many newbies to the area do.


Observations of Small Town Living (OOSTL)

Tuesday, November 4th, 2008

Voting small town style – Based on our past experience in the burbs of Chicago, we met November 4th with some trepidation. After all, our driver’s licenses had our old address on them. No worries, we gathered up our old bills and found a utility bill and our mortgage statement to prove our address, and of course that voter registration verification form. What a dissappointment it turned out to be.

There were no metal detectors. No cops. No getting frisked. No need for that voter verification, utility bills. Not even our drivers licenses. We didn’t even stand in line.

Walk in, say name, sign paper, confirm address… and they give you a ballot. Vote (only about 12 choices), turn in ballot, leave. It was so uneventful that we looked at each other and laughed as if we’d gotten away with something.

Dear Illinois, it can be different. Really.