Archive for December, 2009

My Favorite Birthday Gift

Wednesday, December 30th, 2009

I received many nice gifts for Christmas and Birthday. For each one I am truly thankful. But a birthday gift from my sweet Jenny was one I’d waited over 15 years to receive. Below is the first draft of the manuscript of her novel. I have reading to do. Bye.


Not what it appears to be.

Saturday, December 26th, 2009

In the below image you’ll see the one tall tree that wasn’t forested with the rest. Kind of a loggers joke… or is it?


This shot is of a mountain top that you’d see when driving into Idaho. You can see it easily from 10 miles away on Interstate 90. When we first drove to Idaho, I saw this and thought, “Wow, that’s cool. They logged the mountain top but left one tree standing there to show how tall the trees used to be.” Oh how naive I was.

Wouldn’t it have been a shame to drive into the beauty of Idaho only to see a big ol’ cell-tower welcoming you. I guess that’s what the state thought when they camouflaged this cell-tower to look like the tallest tree in the forest. Fooled me. Probably fooled thousands.

Eagle watching on Lake Coeur d’Alene

Saturday, December 26th, 2009

OK, now it’s a tradition. Head down to Lake Coeur d’Alene at watch eagles, which are migrating south, eat salmon, which are spawning on the shoreline.This first shot is actually the images combined of an eagle swooping in for lunch.


Hopefully by next year I’ll have enough saved to get some better quality images.

eagle01.jpg eagle02.jpg eagle03.jpg
(Click images to enlarge)

Walk in the woods behind our house

Wednesday, December 23rd, 2009

With only about 6 inches on the ground I hike up into the hills behind our house to see what I can see. Thought I’d share some shots.

hike01.jpg hike02.jpg hike04.jpg
(Click images to enlarge)

OK, here’s an extra credit question. How do you know a moose has been here in the image below?


Answer: Branches don’t grow at 90 degree angles unless a moose has been munching on them.

Observations of Small Town Living (OOSTL)

Monday, December 7th, 2009

Getting local information about a power outage is virtually impossible unless you think outside the box. You call the electric company and they provide a recording telling you what you already know, “Your power’s out!” But how wide spread is the outage and are other towns coming on line before or after yours? Here’s what I learned during a three hour outage last night that I tested during a two hour outage this morning.

If you’re in Cocolalla, and the power goes out, you can test the extent of the outage with and AM/FM radio.  Nothing magic here, just tune in to 1400 AM to see if Sandpoint is out and tune into 89.9 FM to see if Rathdrum is out. Hint – if the station works, they have power. These towns and radio stations are north and south of us and follow the power grid up from Coeur d’Alene. If you’re on Air-Pipe’s wireless internet system on Little Blacktail Mountain, you’ll know when Rathdrum comes back on line when you can connect back to the internet world.

Air-Pipe uses a battery back-up that can keep things working for 3 hours max. After that, your internet goes dark. I was under the impression that they have a generator up on Little Black Tail. If that’s the case, one can only guess when and how it’s turned on. If you have info on this topic, please let me know.

If you have other suggestions and tips, please contact me and I’ll share them here.

Observations of Small Town Living (OOSTL)

Sunday, December 6th, 2009

The owner of this liquor store must have sat around for hours, conducted surveys and test groups to figure out what they lacked and the major new innovation that would propel their success.

The big New York Ad Agencies have nothing on small town niche marketing.

11/19/09 First Substantial Snow – 12/6/09 Power Outage

Sunday, December 6th, 2009

We had our first substantial snow on Nov. 19th. It was melted a day or two later.(click below to enlarge image)


Today is December 6th and there’s hardly any snow on the ground. The temps are dropping into the teens. Today was about the coldest day this season, hitting the low teens. At church a friend of ours told Jenny that she doesn’t like the cold temps because the power tends to go out when the temp gets this low. I have no idea about the science behind that statement but true to form the electricity went out for 30-seconds. Well, for most people it was 3 hours, but the generator kicked in and the house quickly came back to life. The generator isn’t powerful enough for the electric furnace but the pellet stove worked like a champ.

Last week the pellet stove was down for repairs.  We have much to be thankful for.


Wednesday, December 2nd, 2009

We ran away with friends to Leavenworth Washington. Leavenworth is a Bavarian style town where you go to:

  1. Make your bride feel loved because of the following items in this list
  2. Smell potpourri and incense as every store attempts to appeal to your appreciation for the smell of somewhere other than the store. That is except for the cheese store. It smelled like a cheese store, or feet, depending on your perspective.
  3. Buy anything related to Christmas from every perspective — including the dog’s.
  4. Buy lovely Bavarian baked goods…unless you go on Tuesday or Wednesday when the baker that sells fresh-mouth-watering-hand-made soft-pretzels is closed. I suggested giving them a brick through their window. Humbug.
  5. Buy gifts for those hard to buy people. Like my father in-law who is getting a great …. sorry dad, I can’t spoil the surprise.
  6. EAT. Eat well. Eat really good food. Eat lots of it. Kinda makes it all worth while. (wow, I just noticed my spell check didn’t flag the word “Kinda”. Don’t tell my wife or she’ll format the hard drive)

I didn’t get many pictures but did manage to get an amazing cast of sunlight on the mountains in the morning.


And on the way home, we caught this picture of a goose drawn carriage. Umm, I don’t know.