I'm Good Enough, I'm Smart Enough, and Doggone It, People Like Me!

OK, then! Since my outdoor adventure over a week ago, I got NUTHIN'. I am recovering nicely from the scrapes and bruising (Thank you for asking); but Heidi, Laila and I have all come down with a rotten bug that I'm told will last 2 weeks! YEA!

Since I check everyone else's blog more than once a day to see what's happening to the 'Beautiful People', I decided I'd better get my two cents in, even if it's just to tell you all that I think we have a pretty great bunch of people in our family! Congrats to Ben, Kwona and kids on the NEWS! It's always so exciting to hear about what's going on with the DelHoyo's, the Smith's, the Boxer's, and Jenna! Oh to be energetic and totally incorporated in the everyday happenings of a young family -- I remember it well, but don't think I'd want to go there again!

Heidi and Grant had an anniversary get-away planned for the weekend, and since I already was sick, took over the tending issue with Laila and Tank (the English Bulldog). Picture this if you can, a roll of toilet paper hanging off my belt loop just so's I have it handy to wipe up the slime from the dog's mouth, Laila's and my nose, and anything else that may need to be wiped up. Laila is packing my jar of Mentholatum and inhaler around in her pocket, and I have my Afrin and AIRBORNE's on the k
itchen counter. It was a FUN weekend.

I've been considering seriously the opportunity (Did I actually say that?) of getting back into a professional career. So I'm polishing up my resume', calling on those people I trust enough to lie for me as references, and anticipating with bated breath the 40-hour week, the hour long drive, and the hustle and bustle of the Big City. Unless, of course, I get a part-timer here in Davis Co. and only have to dress up on Sundays! Oh wait, I don't do that either! I've had just about as much fun as a girl can stand for the past 3 years without having to work. It was nice being able to lounge out by the pool in Boise, and we have worked hard to get the yard done at our new location in Syracuse, but it's time to dust off and do something more! I only wish I had taken the time and opportunity to get more schooling so that I was marketable, but I guess 13 years polishing diamonds should get me somewhere, don't ya think?

The weather here is changing markedly towards Fall. There are some beautiful drives to take and a few good days left to watch the kids play soccer, football, and play at the park. I guess I'll take advantage of these before I am committed (Did I say that?) to a job. Some of the best times of our lives is when we can sit in solitude and listen to what the wind says. Or watch the ducks and geese swim across the pond, only to get to the other side . . . for what? I leave you with this beautiful image (complim
ents of Mike).


Chapter 2 - Rescue

When last I left you, we had gathered back at the parking lot of the Lodge. I'm thinking we've put in a good training session -- but NOOOO! We're just getting a 2nd wind! OH GOODY - we get to do it again! We go through the same instructions and are sent off with a scent article to tie on a branch along the way. Then up, over, up some more and hunker down for the wait. This time, I make sure I'm up and out of the prescribed area far enough to be acceptable. I plop myself down and radio in. Waiting . . . waiting . . . waiting. I'm wondering if anyone heard me. I lay down and look straight up in the sky above me. Beautiful!

Finally, a nice man's voice comes across and asks if I'm OK. Sure; just fine! As I sit there, I realize that I'm sitting in an ant bed! Not to worry; just little black ants that I feel crawling up my legs, under my shirt, on my arms and neck; they don't bite. Could be worse - could be poison oak or a rattle snake. Should I jump up to another spot and compromise whether the dog is close by? The trooper that I am, I just sit & swipe!

Many minutes go by. Finally, I hear the crackling of branches as the man & his dog approach me. It's Shasta, the bloodhound to the rescue, and she gives me wet kisses to say she's there and should now be rewarded! What? A kiss is not enough? No! They want treats and toys as well!

The day seems to be a SUCCESS. I was rescued twice, and am asked if I'd like to go one more time? ARE YOU KIDDING ME? You may actually have a 'VICTIM' in the true form if I go out a 3rd time.

I get home and survey the injuries: 4 new bruises; a skinned knee; a twisted ankle
; scrapes and abrasions down my arm; and thorns in my hand - but not the least bit stiff! Maybe this old lady is in better shape than I thought! Not bad for a novice victim; and my grandkids will be so excited to see and hear about what an adventurer I am!

Did I enjoy the day? What sane person would not love being out in the beautiful fall foliage, smelling the sage and oak, conversing with the animals, and being with/meeting good friends? Will I go again? I understand the next traning session is up North and includes a Dutch Oven dinner - I'm a sucker for food (HA! HA!) Will my injuries be healed and my pride be mended? Most definitely! Just not gonna take anything but snack mix, water, and smaller note pad in a fanny pack. It makes for a much harder hike if your arms of full of peripherals that really aren't needed.

Hurry up into the Hills, and take advantage of the view before it's gone!


Rescue Pack . . . coming to the rescue!

My adventure begins with a leisurely drive up Weber Canyon to Trapper's Loop and a turnoff at Snow Basin. The fall foliage is beginning to turn into vibrant colors of gold, orange, reds, and hues of all three! In contrast with the pines, they make for a beautiful setting to play 'Hide & Seek' with my friends group from "American Rescue Dogs". Polly has been trying to get me out on one of the training sessions for the past year! I finally gave in - and had such a great time.

Let me just preface the previous remark by saying that the fearless leader of this group began by calling me a "victim" and not a "hider"! This and the fact that my friend had sent me two emails that I opened up early this morning - 1. a quiz to test your 'belief system' & 2. a silly video about in-bred deer hunters who hold branches up to their heads and end up being mistaken for deer - and SHOT! Okay. . .is she sending me a message? Anyway, after I meet everyone in the group (including the dogs) I'm sure glad people 'make nice' by shaking hands! I get shuffled into a little red truck and we head back down the road to our hiding area. Now, I'm wondering what my outcome will be as she points me in the direction she would like me to take -- across the road, down the ravine, up to the dead tree, north along the side of the mountain, while climbing higher, and just about parallel to where they had s
een a MONSTER Moose as they drove up this morning! Fine. . .I don't see the Moose in the field; has it gone back up into the high country?

As the starting gun fires, I take off for my trek. Now no one says this is a race, but I'm thinking I should get to my spot post-haste, so that I can settle in before the bloodhounds are released. I stumble; I fall, I'm gasping and snorting up the mountain! I get just about as far as I think I can go & radio in on the GPS. "No", Vicky says, "go a little further north".

What have I got myself into? I pick myself up (Yes folks! I'm laying prostrate sideways on the mountain)! I guess I didn't take into consideration that a 'victim' must hike into the area of demise and then hunker down in a thicket of trees 'til the dogs find them. I had been instructed to bring a book, a sketch/writing pad, handwork - anything that I would like to spend time doing. Further in, I finally see the meadow I'm suppose to be seeing far below! I drop across the stump of a fallen tree -- I wonder if anyone heard it fall? I wonder if anyone heard ME fall?! I again radio in and they check my coordinates. I begin surveying my injuries, as I lay there bruised and bleeding. YES! I am truly a VICTIM! I look up into the sky - is it a bird, a plane? Maybe they'll send in Air Support!

As I sit there in the quiet solitude, I am amazed at how beautiful it is. Noises that you hear only in Nature are all around. The wind whistling thru the pines; a bird pecking away at the bark of a nearby tree; branches creaking and rubbin as the wind blows thru them. Oh & Looky there - I see Chip n' Dale (not the dancers) chasing one another up and down the trees! After a half hour or longer, I hear footsteps behind and above me. Crikey!
Please let it be "Man & His Best Friend" and not that MOOSE! Yes - it's my guys to the rescue. They seem as happy & excited to find me, as I am to see them! After doggy kisses from Clyde (the dog) and treats for reward, we pick ourselves up & head back down the hill -- did I say HILL? We get picked up on the road and driven down by the Lodge. Oh good - almost everyone is back - are we done?!

[to be continued]



September 2, 2007 - Momentous! We weathered the elements of Earth, Wind, maybe not Fire! Unless you want to count the antics of a rebellious, contrary and uncooperative 2 year-old and a tired baby! Mike, Shari and Connor were able to come up for Labor Day weekend, so that was like getting the Earth to stand still. To get Curt to come, I told him that is poor old Mom had been diagnosed with a terminal illness, and that this was her dying wish. Woody asked why we just couldn't just put it off another year! And I promised them all that this would be the last time I asked them to do this. Can you guess yet what I'm talking about? You got it folks -- a FAMILY PORTRAIT! My photog friend guaranteed me that it is his experience that "you must drag most men kicking and screaming" to one of these. After all, he says: "I was once one of them!"
courtesy of Paul Durham Photography

"The sky that day was angry, my friends". Ominous clouds hung dark & low. Lightning cracked, and thunder--well, it thundered! Wind, rain, even hail -- could this be an omen? I was assured it was not by my kind, calm photographer friend. It did finally clear, & when the sun came out, the fearless photog and his trusty 2nd Lt. were able to take some beautiful pictures -- I especially love the candid shots with hair blowing in the face! I'm sure Heidi thought her newly lasik'd eyes were gonna flap right off her eyeballs! The little kids had fun running around the park in the wind, and all seemed to enjoy being with one another. OH JOY! That makes all the cajoling, bribing, threatening and coaxing even mor
e special for a Mom.

When it seemed there would be no cooperation or coming-together on this momentous occasion, Heidi went to task and worked this family pix up. Actually, I like it well enough, and it really does fit the personality of the family; I may just hang this up as well.