Friday, December 25, 2015

Merry Christmas . . . . .


It was a nice Christmas this year.  Christmas Eve at our niece’s home with family.  Christmas day spent at home with Holly (mom), Aaron (son), and, of couse me.  And our 2 dogs.  ■  Our friends Cheryl and Bill and their daughter and son-in-law came over for Christmas dinner.  No turkey this year.  Ribs on the grill, corn casserole, baked potatoe, and flan for dessert.  ■  The  picture to the left is of Holl and Cheryl sitting on the couch with our 2 dogs and her pooch. (just look for the glowing eyes of the dogs)  The dogs played for hours.  Maybe not hours, but for a long time.  ■  Tomorrow our son leaves for a month going to Naples, Italy.  Which means his car goes in the garage and mine stays out.  Maybe I should get a remote car starter.  Hmmmm.  ■ 

Thursday, December 24, 2015

It’s the morning before Christmas …..

And all throught the house; folks were still sleeping; thank goodness no mouse.

I’ve purchased some things; to give as for gifts; I’m not sure I can find ‘em; my head’s in a tiff.

Flashlights and letters; candles and flame; if I can’t find these gifts; it’s only me to blame.

I’ve got bacon to smoke; a salmon too; got to get busy; there’s so much to do.

Got to get flowers; to pretty our table; that’s a quick run to Jewel; when I’m able.

Got a drawing to redo; it just didn’t turn out right; only one more; before I turn out the light.

I need to jump in the shower; and put on some clothes; pick up some dog stuff; that doesn’t smell like a rose.

We’ve got a new dog; Fern is her name; this is her first Christmas; will anything be the same?

She slept with us last night; curled up by my side; my arm around her for protection; to make her feel safe inside.

Abby slept with us too; she’s a sweetheart, you know; a bit big for the bed; but goes with the flow.

And now I must end; this missive for the year;  got shopping to do; before that first beer.

More later – maybe.

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Back again . . . . .


I used to use “Windows Live Writer” for writing these blog posts.  All of a sudden it didn’t work anymore as Microsoft has apparently stopped supporting it.  However they gave it to the open source community.  Very nice of them to do that.  I’ve liked the software for blogging and from the reviews I read on blogging software, most everyone gave it top marks.  At any rate I went off on a search for a replacement.  At the start of my search I didn’t know they had turned it lose to the open source community.  I read many reviews and even downloaded a couple of replacements, but none came close to “Windows Live Writer.”  Then I found that it was now open source and going by the name of “Open Live Writer.”  I’ve been saved!  ■  Busy Christmas season for me.  One more drawing I absolutley must finish before Christmas.  First some drawing and then to bed.  ■ Oh, the four houses above belong to four children of my client.  I’m sure the kids will love the gift.  ■

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

A little snow,


but nothing to shovel -   Thank goodness.  ■  Kind of out-of-breath today.  Some days are easier than others.  It’s strange that when I used to go up a flight of stairs it was no problem – not out of breath at all.  Now it’s different.  And having to come up from the basement and then go upstairs to the 2nd floor  -  it’s time to sit for quite awhile.  ■  Got our Christmas cards printed.  Holly wasn’t here so she had to trust me not write anything crazy.  I’ll leave it at that.  ■  Abby and I have been on a little road trip going to the bank, UPS, and Dr. Wood’s Guitar Emporium.  She gets a dog treat at the bank, but has to sit in the car at UPS and Dr. Woods.  ■  Had a little breakfast, but no lunch.  I’m thinking of Lou Malnati’s pizza for dinner.  Great pizza.  I know I shouldn’t have any, but a couple of small pieces should be fine.  ■  Time to get back to drawing.  ■

Sunday, November 29, 2015

Down on the farm . . . . .

Just a quick painting from a photograph of a farm someplace in New YorkNY_Farm_002.  It was fun painting it.  ■  Still have more pen and inks to draw.  Got to keep busy and get them done.  ■  Holly’s off on a business trip tomorrow.  ■  Still kind of looking for another dog.  Abby needs the company, I think.  ■

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

No new dog today . . . . .

112515_001No new dog today.  We took Abby out to the animal shelter to look at Ellie.  Abby snarled at her.  Not good.  I’m thinking that maybe Abby likes the attention that she gets at home being the only dog.  I’ll take Abby back tomorrow to give it another try, but I’m not hopeful.  Bummer.  And apparently there’s still one German Shepherd puppy that the wife of one of our guitar players still has left from a litter of 8.  I just don’t know if I can do a puppy that turns into a large dog.  ■  Nice Christmas card painting, huh?  Time for bed (TFB)  ■

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Busy . . . drawing still to do ……


I need to get to bed.  It’s 1:45 am and here I am still up.  Got to go and kick Abby out of my spot so I can go to sleep.  susan_connors_card_002_small■  Finished a drawing today.  (why is this blog software putting in chunks of space between sentences?)  This is a beautiful home in North Carolina.  I did a Christmas card for it just ‘cause I wanted to and my eyes needed rest from drawing.  ■  Tomorrow Holly has a test at the hospital and in the afternoon I’m driving out to an animal shelter with Abby to take a look at a dog, or maybe more than one dog.  We’ll only get one dog, but might look at several.  ■  Ok, TFB.  ‘Night.

Saturday, November 21, 2015

Here comes winter . . . . .


Our first snow of the winter season this year – November 2015 – March 2016).  Started last night and looking out the window now I can see it’s still snowing.  And I’m forbidden to heft a shovel and help clear my sidewalks and driveway.  The sidewalks are a bear as I live on a corner.  Seems like acres of sidewalks.  The drive way slopes somewhat steeply from the garage down to the street.  It’s hard to shovel because it’s on such an angle.  I can’t ever remember slipping and falling on it, but I’ve come close – as has my neighbor and Holly I know has slipped and fallen a couple of times.  Not a good driveway for winter conditions.  ■  We’re redoing the “kid’s bathroom.”  While I’m not physically helping (probably a good thing for the guy that’s doing it, I have been running errands for stuff we need for it.  It’s been keeping me busy.  ■  I forgot to post this last night/early this morning.  ■  Got to get the snow shoveled. 

Friday, November 13, 2015

Pen & Ink, Paintings, Paris . . . . .


I’m starting over on a pen & ink I’d been working on.  The roof lines just weren’t working in the view I had.  ■  On another note, I’ve finished (I think) with a Christmas card for a customer.  That’s it in this post.  Got the lights on in the house, the snowman with the builder’s footprints; the snow covered trees; Santa’s sleigh marks on the roof; and Santa flying away to his next stop.  ■  And Paris. 150 dead. I don’t understand people. ■

Sunday, November 1, 2015

Saturday, October 31, 2015

Flight cancelled to Gulfport.

Steve Randahl

Sent from my iPhone

Friday, October 30, 2015

Tomorrow–Bay St. Louis . . .

Tomorrow, actually today, we head to Bay St. Louis, MS to visit some friends for a few days.  Hopefully it’s warmer down on the Mississippi gulf coast.  It’s 48° here.  Colder than I want it.  ■  I’ll try and do some blog postings while we’re down there.  ■  Think warm weather and sunny skies.  ■  TFB.

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Another yucky weather day . . . . .

Yup, it’s 42 degrees out, overcast and just plain yucky.  ■   Went to feed Abby this morning and she wouldn’t eat.  No Zoe to keep her company eating.  I laid down on the floor by her bowl and she just nestled into me.  Wasn’t interesting in eating.  Wasn’t interested in going outside.  She’s depressed and my eyes still have tears pop up now and then.  ■  I’m going to take Abby to the bank with me in a little bit.  We have to get some papers notarized, so I’ll take her inside with me.  ■  And the tissue paper is still on the floor….

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Zoe: Aug, 1999 – Oct, 2015


Zoe, sweet Zoe.  I can’t believe you’re gone.  At night you’d use your head to poke my office door open, stick your head in looking at me until I opened the door and let you in.  Then it was the stare-down until I caved in and gave you the dog biscuit you desired.  After that you’d turn in circles for some time until you finally curled up on the floor.  This was our quality time.  Just the two of us together – our hour of quiet companionship.  You’re with me and I’m with you.  As I look around at my office floor I see a piece of Kleenex that you dug out of the waste basket.  Couldn’t keep your nose out of the garbage.  I think I’ll leave that paper there for awhile.  I’m not in any hurry to pick it up.  I remember that you used to sleep with us every night on the bed – until your poor back legs wouldn’t let you hop up anymore.  After that you slept on the floor on one side or another.  I can remember dropping my hand down from the bed and feeling you curled up on the floor.  You always wanted to be close to people.  Always wanted to please.  Oh, Zoe, I miss you.  This has hit me much harder than I ever thought it would. 

Friday, October 23, 2015

Out of breath . . .

Any exertion tends to put me (is that right) out of breath.  Walking up one flight of stairs – two is a killer.  ■  Rain today.  Maybe tomorrow we’ll be able to cut the grass.  It needs it as well as mulching up the leaves.  No more raking.  ■  Watched The Godfather tonight with my son Aaron.  Great movie.  Godfather Part II is on now, but not for either of us.  It’s time for bed.  ■

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

I’m still livin’

3 doctor appointments – dropped two meds, although one is being replaced with another one, cut the dosage in half with another one – endocrinologist’s meds.  Cardiologist appointment – ok, except they doubled the dosage on the new med they prescribed a few weeks ago.  Have another cardiologist appointment in 3 weeks.  ■  As it stands right now 102115_001the Cubs are losing 6 to 1.  Let’s go Cubs!  ■  I’ve got the drawing paper on my board right now (actually have had for a couple of days) that I need to not only start, but finish and ship to the customer.  It’s a beautiful home.  I hope I can do it justice.  ■  Time for bed.  ‘Night.  ■

3 Drs Appts – 1 down, 2 to go . . .

Had my appointment with my endocrinologist.  Is taking me off of one med, changing one med, and halving the dosage on another med.  That’s good news!  ■  Next appointment is to get my defibrillator/pacemaker read and checked.  The final appointment is for the eye doctor to check my eyes.  ■   Wish me luck on the last two appointments.  ■  And the fingers on both of my hands are moving by themselves.  I though maybe that was due to my not taking one of my hearts meds in a mixup.  But I’ve been back on the missing med for awhile now.  ■  Got to go.

Friday, October 16, 2015

Heart pain?

For the last hour, or so I’ve been having little, sharp pains mostly underneath my left breast.  My first thought minor heart attack.  I don’t think so, but I don’t know.  I went to bed with them, but got back up.  Pains have disappeared right now.  If they start again I think we’ll go to the emergency room.  As you age it seem you get pain in different areas and then it goes away.  ■ ■ ■  Ok, I went back to bed with no pains and slept until 10:45 am.  Now I’ve got to go and try and get blood drawn for my appointment with my endcrinologist  next week. ■

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Cubs win and fall is here . . . . . .

101315_001 101315_002

That’s Abby deciding if she should come in from the outside.  Looks like she’s giving it a second thought.  The other picture is the view from our patio.  Those couple of trees are some of the first to start turning.  Very pretty.  ■  Bought a 12 watt charger for my iphone.  It’s purported to charge the iphone/ipad much faster than their normal charger.  I tried it last night and it did seem much quicker.  My iphone’s battery is down to 58% at 7:27 pm.  I’ll check it in a bit to see how it’s doing.  Patience.  ■  The Cubs won tonight so now they advance towards the World Series.  Could this be the year?  ■ 

iPhone charging:

58% @ 7:27 pm    ---    84% @ 7:55pm    ---    94% @ 8:14 pm

Went downstairs for awhile and when I came back up it was 100% charged, but I don’t know when it actually hit 100%.  Not exactly scientific, but I think it’s definitely faster that the old charger.  ■   TFB.  ‘Night.  ■

Monday, October 12, 2015

A quick neighborhood pic . . .


Just a quick pic for Roxanne and Bob.  I’ll try and remember to take more neighborhood pictures in the next few weeks.  ■  TFB. ■

Saturday, October 10, 2015

Turkey breast . . . can’t be beat . . .


Delicious.  6.7 lbs done on a Weber charcoal grill in indirect heat; smoked with hickory wood chips.  Tender and moist and most definitely delicious.  ■  Tomorrow (Sunday) is supposed to be a nice day.  A Warm and sunny 78°.  Got to get the hose disconnected and the grass cut.  ■  I should take some pictures of the neighborhood before the leaves turn (some have started turning) and then when they’ve turned.  Gotta remember to do that.  ■

Friday, October 9, 2015

Recent visitors to my Pen & Ink website


Always fun to see where people live that look at my Pen & Ink website.  Most of them are in the US, but there are a few from different places in the world.

Update . . .

My fingers/hands are definitely shaking.  Went to the cardiologist’s office today to have my pacemaker/defibrillator checked.  The doctor had prescribed a new blood  pressure med for me a couple of weeks ago.  I thought that it replaced the current blood pressure med I had been taking for quite some time  - so I stopped taking that one.  It turns out that it was a blood pressure med that I should take in-addition-to my regular blood pressure med.  By stopped that med I probably sent my blood pressure up and that’s when the defibrillator kicked in.  I’m now easing back into the old med.  Let’s hope that’s the cause of the shaking.  ■

Saturday, October 3, 2015

The Fire is On . . . . .


It’s officially fall – the fireplace is on.  That’s Holly sitting in her chair watching the Notre Dame/Clemson game.  ■  Did some pork on the grill.  Slowly smoked it, and it was delicious.  As usual.  ■  Went to the guitar store that I used to work at to add some more weeks to a spreadsheet that the owner uses to track his daily sales.  He used to use Excel, but now has a Mac and uses Apple’s Numbers spreadsheet to track the information.  I started using spreadsheets back when Visicalc came out.  Then onto Appleworks; a DEC Vax spreadsheet; then Lotus 1-2-3; Javelin; and finally Excel as Excel pretty much became the industry standard.  Apple’s spreadsheet doesn’t seem to follow any of the common spreadsheet conventions.  Ok, that’s not true, but it seems Apple had to simply do something different so differentiate their product from standards.  What a mess.  ■■  In adding rows to the spreadsheet and trying to format dates correctly I saw that my hands weren’t steady.  My fingers now have movements of their own.  Just holding up my hands I can see my fingers move – without me moving them.  Just one more thing to add to health issues.  ■  Ok, it’s time for bed.  ‘Night.  ■

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Shocking ….. defibrillator went off


Got out of the shower today and toweling off my defibrillator went off.  They told me that if it ever went off I’d know it.  Believe me I knew it.  It was as if someone hit me in the upper chest and the lights flashed.  I hope I don’t go thru that again.  Got an appointment next week to interrogate the device (pacemaker/defribillator) to see what happened.  ■  Other than that I’ve got a drawing I’m working on and I’ve got a heck of a cold.  I haven’t had a cold in years.  ■  Got a doctor’s appointment this afternoon -  not with the cardiologist, but with my GP.  ■

Thursday, September 24, 2015

On our way to Louisille

Steve Randahl

Sent from my iPhone

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Beautiful weather and flowers . . . . .

We’ve been having some beautiful weather for the past few days.  Hope it continues.  ■ 092315_001 This picture is of some of the flowers on our neighbor’s deck.  Very nice.  ■  Abby got a car ride to the bank and then Jewel today.  She loves going to the bank because they always give her dog treats.  Mmmm . .. .  let’s go to the bank.  ■  Off to see the grandchildren this weekend.  Should be a good time.  ■  Got to go and mow the lawn.  ■

Monday, September 21, 2015

Chili Fest, Venice . . . . .

092115_001Had another good Chili Fest this year.  It was the 22nd one we’ve had.  Lots of good food, cold beverages, warm friends, and fun music.  ■  Venice – our drummer’s daughter has written a book that let’s you choose your own path thru the story.  I’ve ordered 3 copies from Amazon and she’s going to autograph them for me.  The author’s name is Michelle Novak.  I’m really excited to get the books.  They should arrive tomorrow.  ■  Oh, here’s a link to the book on Amazon:  .

I’ve got a basement full of musical equipment to organize as well as a garage full the has to go down the basement.  Time to get to work.

Saturday, September 19, 2015

Makin’ Chili . . . . . 2015


Yup, makin’ chili .  . . .. Had my son, Aaron, helping me cut multiple tons of meat for the chili.  I think we have a total of approximately 24 lbs of meat.  Only 4 of beef and venison burger – the rest of beef and pork that had to be smoked and cut into  bite-sized pieces.  Believe me, that’s a lot of cutting!  Smoked 20lbs of beef and pork on Friday night.  Took 6 hours to do it.  Had there been some wind it might have taken a little less time.  No wind, but we did have rain and some doosies of lightning.  I was outside grabbing some wood chips to throw on the fire when a lightning bolt struck pretty close – close enough that I actually jumped.  Seemed like it was next door, although I’m sure it was a bit further away.  I thought that I’d get struck, but I still had to get the wood chips on the fire – so I didn’t panic.  I do wonder if my pacemaker kicked in.  ■  Made 2 batches of chili.  Aaron made the 2nd one and it’s gooooood!  I need to adjust the flavors of the first one to match the second.  ■  Zoe and I are in my office having out “quality time” – that’s where she sleeps for awhile and then starts her whining to get a biscuit. Then back to sleep.  ■  Cheryl and Bill are in for Chili Fest – the XXII one.  Bill is making a batch of his chili.  He makes the best.  It’s the one I always shoot to beat.  He’s the master.  ■  So now I’m up in the middle of the night – it’s about 2:00 am, posting to my blog.  I should be sleeping.  What’s the matter with me?  ■  I’m on new heart medication.  Was taking  Carvedilol twice a day – now taking Cartia Xt once a day.  Looking to see if I notice any changes.  So far I don’t.  Is that good, or bad?  Don’t know.  Maybe it’s good ‘cause I’m still standing upright (ok sitting at this moment).  ■  Jac, my across-the-street neighbor, made some great mole from a Rick Bayless recipe.  it’s great!  I’ve got to get the recipe.  ■  The weather looks promising for today – it’s already Saturday.  Hopefully no rain and cooler temperatures – perfect for Chili Fest.  ■  This is the XXII Chili Fest.  22 years of bringing good chili, friends, and cold beverages together in the fall.  Lovin’ it.  ■ 

Saturday, August 29, 2015

Fall is coming . . . . .

Yup, fall is coming.  I’ve got one picture of the leaves just starting to turn on one tree just to the northeast of us.  I know  I took a picture.  Let me find it.

082915-001Here it is.  The leaves are starting to turn.  I think that tree starts early every year. 

Chili Fest is coming up.  This will be the last one.  I don’t think I have the energy for it anymore.  Someone else has to start throwing the parties.

Tomorrow we’re off to the Cribbage Club get-together.  Should be a lot of fun. 

Zoe is starting to have more physical problems.   Her back legs will splay on the hard floors and then she can’t get up.  Just happened with her coming up the stairs a few minutes ago.  She got her front lets on the first step and her back legs splayed on the wooden floor.  Poor baby.  She’s 16 years old.  Most likely doing better than I’ll be at the same relative age.

Yes, it’s time for bed.  ‘Night.’

Monday, June 22, 2015

ASCII Art . . . . .


Beautiful photo of me.  All put together with ascii characters.  What is/are ascii?  ASCII stands for American Standard Code for Information Interchange – a different code (numeric) for each character, letter, number, etc.  So, my picture is printed out using letters, upper and lower case, numbers, punctuation marks etc.  ■  It was Father’s Day yesterday.  Did steak on the grill, mushrooms and onions, played a bit of lap steel out on the patio.  A nice day.  ■ 

Saturday, June 6, 2015

Drawing completed . . . . .


Completed a drawing yesterday.  The drawing is of my customer’s friend’s home.  The friend is moving away and she thought that a pen and ink drawing of her home would be a great gift.  I think she’s right.  ■  Blackhawks lost tonight.  Bummer.   Time for bed.  ■  Night.

Friday, May 22, 2015

Out to see Billy G at Breakers . . . . .

Went out to The Breakers (local oriental restaurant) with friends from our cribbage group to eat and hear Billy G play.  It was a lot of fun.  ■  Billy G has a really pleasing selection 052115_001of songs that he plays – lots of Neil Young, CSNY, Eagles, Tom Petty, etc.  I’ve had one opportunity to sit in with him and I’ll get some more in the future.  ■  Redid out patio planter boxes a few days ago.  Really, my great neighbors did 98% of the work.  I can dig about 4 or 5 shovelfuls of dirt and I’m out-of-breath.  The old heart doesn’t pump like it used to years ago.  I think I’m down somewhere around 30% of some heart-rate measurement that I can’t remember right now.  ■  A 3-day weekend coming up this weekend.  Tomorrow I pick up Aaron (our son) at O’Hare.  He’s been in Naples, Italy for the past 3 weeks with the Navy.  It’ll be good to see him.  ■  About time for bed.  ‘Night.  ■

Friday, April 17, 2015

Sleep . . .

Schist.  My sleep has been crap lately.  I sometimes fall asleep easily, but only sleep for 2, or 3 hours; then wake up and am up for 2, or 3 hours and then go back to be and sleep for a few more hours.  Sometimes I can’t fall asleep and then am up for hours before I do.  None of it makes sense.  Right now I’m hot and sweating and yet I’m chilled.  And I’m not asleep.  Last night Zoe came in to our room and went ‘round and ‘round by my side of the bed until she finally stepped between the hose for my CPAP and the bedside table and then went for the door and pulled the CPAP off the bedside table.  Luckily it didn’t break.  I can’t sleep without the CPAP machine.  Sleep is what I need, but can’t seem to get.  ■  Going to bed now.

Friday, April 10, 2015

The weather has turned warm . . . . .


The weather has taken a turn for the better – warmer - 70° today.  I like it.  ■  Went down to Louisville for Easter weekend.  Libby & Jay needed us to babysit our grandkids.  It was a delightful time.  That’s a picture of Maggie Byrd and I playing guitar.  ■  Headaches.  I’ve had a continuous headache since Monday.  It’s just there – more than slight – and pulsating.  If it doesn’t go away in the next few days I’ll get an appointment with my neurologist.  When they tested me a few years ago to try and find the cause of my headaches they did an MRI (jeeze I hate those!) and found I had a small brain tumor.  It’s not cancerous and I may have had it since I was a child.  They didn’t think that the tumor is the cause of the headaches anyway.  Since I now have a pacemaker/defibrillator MRIs are out.  ■  Aaron’s going to Naples, Italy next month for a month courtesy of the Navy.  Should be an interesting experience for him.  ■ 

Monday, March 23, 2015

Snow in March . . .


We were expecting a couple of inches, but it look more like 5-6 inches on top of my grill.  Just when we thought winter was over.. … ■  My desk/office reorg is taking longer that I thought – heck longer than it should.  I look at all the stuff and wonder what to do with it.  If I were smart I’d just bring a large trash bag up here and just throw it all out.  ■  Went and saw our old bass player’s new band – actually one of his new bands – Yesterday’s Children.  10 people in the band – 5 piece horn section, drums, guitarist, bassist, keyboardist and singer.  They were good.  Lots of Chicago, Buckinghams, Ides of March, etc.  Really good.  ■ 

Friday, March 20, 2015

Car working . . . new drawing order ….

My 15 year old Honda CRV032015_001 was overheating.  The temperature gauge would climb from normal to high and then go back down to normal.  I finally thought to check the coolant level for the radiator.  It was low, so I bought some, filled it up and drove the car to test it.  Yup, it seems I was just low in coolant.  An easy fix.  That’s something I’ll have to remember to check every so often.  ■  Got an order for a pen & ink of a home.  That’s a picture of it in this post. That driveway must be a PITA to shovel in winter!  ■  We’re going to Kenosha, Wisconsin this coming Sunday afternoon to see a  band our old bass player is in.  The band does a lot of Chicago, Buckinghams, etc horn music.  The band starts at 3:00 pm so I thinking we’ll leave here early enough to drive up there and have lunch at the bar before the band starts.  ■  TFB.  ‘Night.  ■

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

A Flight of Fancy . . . . .


Another bird painting completed.  This one’s a Blue Jay.  ■  The temps are coming up – spring is in the air.  The snow is melting and the dog’s feet are muddy.  We like the warm temperatures, but not the mud.  ■  Practiced with Pat this past Saturday afternoon  and will practice again tonight.  I might join him  for a few songs this Saturday night.  Songs – City of New Orleans, Lyin’ Eyes, Knockin’ On Heavens Door, Dock of the Bay, Love Is A Rose, Down By The River.  ■  Need to get my minimal recording studio set up.  Dying to record some stuff.  ■

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Sad day.

My daughter called me this afternoon and asked if her Uncle Jym had passed away.  She had seen something on facebook about him.  I don’t have a facebook account, so I have to rely on others that do.  And, yes, it seems that Jym has passed away.  No other details at this point.  We’ll probably find out more tonight via facebook.  ■ 

Saturday, February 28, 2015

Billy Galaxy–2 nights this weekend . . .

Went out to Vicky’s Place in McHenry to hear Billy Galaxy play.  Tonight (Saturday) we’re going to go hear him at The Crystal Lake Rib House.  022815_001■  Dang, but it’s cold out.  -6° right now.   Too cold for the final day of February.  ■  Zoe’s had problems with the cold in the past, but seems to be doing alright now.  Last year when it was so cold she would pick one leg up from the ground to warm it up – then put that leg down and pick up another one.  One time she even laid down in the snow – sort of gave up.  Had to yell at her to get her to get up and get inside.  We’ve, on a couple of occasions, had to go outside and kind of pull her to get her going back to the house.  She seems to handle the cold a little better this year.  ■  Having some work done upstairs next week.  Shoe molding (or moulding – the British spelling) installed, three interior door fixed, some transition strips put in, framing for our octagon windows in our master bedroom and later on redoing the kid’s bathroom.  ■■■■  more later. 

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

New card . . . . .


I’ve been working on this one for quite a few days on and off.  I think I’m done.  I’ve got no more to say.  ■  Still relatively cold out, but much warmer than it has been.  It’s 12 ° out – at least not in the negative numbers like it has been.  Makes one hope for summer.  ■  Have to go to the Coumadin clinic to get my blood checked and then on to see my Kidney doctor.  ■  After that Pat and I should practice some acoustic songs together.  ■  TFB. ■

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Seein’ Billy Galaxy . . . . .


Out to see Billy Galaxy about a week, or so ago.  Had a nice time.  Billy played at Vicky’s Place in McHenry, IL.  Good gig for him.  Maybe one of these days I’ll join him for a few songs.  ■  Holly went to Louisville for the weekend;  Aaron took off for Bloomington; it was just me and the dogs.  Made steak and watched The Outlaw Josey Wales.  Good movie. ■  TFB.  ‘Night.

Thursday, February 19, 2015

I’ve thought of posting every day, but . . .

I haven’t done it.  Bad me.  ■  It’s been cold.  That’s with a CAPITAL “C” – it’s –5 degrees right now.  Too cold.  ■  Way too cold.  It’s –5 degrees.  Too cold for me; too cold for you.   ■  TFB.  Yup.  ‘Night.  ■

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

It’s so delicious . . . . .


. . .. yes it is.  It’s turkey breast smoked in a low and slow grill.  It’s good.  That’s what we cooked on Sunday night. Had it for lunch today too.  ■  I’ve got to remember to refill the wood chips in my smoking bucket.  Getting down to enough for maybe one more fire.  ■  Abby is very watchful over Zoe.  When Abby wants to go out she doesn’t want to leave Zoe inside, and usually sits and waits for Zoe to get off their couch (yeah, I’m pretty sure it’s “their” couch now.)  If Abby does go out first shell wait at the top of the patio until Zoe actually makes it outside.  ■  TFB.

Thursday, February 5, 2015

It’s cold outside .. . . . . . ….



I started this post early this morning.

I know it’s winter, but it’s cold outside.  Got down to -11° last night.  It’s now a balmy -3°.  Burrrrrrr.  Have a couple of places I need to go, but no rush.  I think I can put them off until tomorrow when it’ll be a little warmer.  ■ 

Now I’m picking it up here = much later at night.  ■  Watched Young Guns I and II tonight.  Didn’t finish YG II.  They were/are good movies.  Of course I’m partial to westerns.  That’s what we watched when we were kids.  Do you remember “Wanted Dead, or Alive”, “Bonanza”, “Gunsmoke”, “Butch Cassidy and The Sundance Kid”, etc.  That’s what we grew up on.  “The Rifleman”, “The Lone Ranger”, “Roy Rodgers”, “Fury”, “Circus Boy” (ok, who remembers Circus Boy?)  I do.  And the list goes on and on.  “The Cisco Kid”, “Rawhide”, “Sky King” – ok, Sky King wasn’t  a western, but it did take place out west.  ■  I can hear Abby snoring in our room next door.  It is time-for-bed (TFB).  ‘Night.  ■

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Interesting stuff . . . . .


I’m a big reader of Reddit.  Lots of interesting stuff on there and a great site to search for information on things.  Today I happened to read a post on on their askreddit subdirectory and found out things like (shortening things up here):  Neutrogena Facial Soap out of the pump container cleans out stains on everything.  Works better than most laundry products.  Mr. Clean Magic Erasers are just melamine sponges.  Peanut butter gets gum out of your hair.  Hydrogen peroxide will clean bloodstains out of fabric. 

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

More snow . . . . .

More snow . . . . well, what do expect in February in Cary?

Yup, more snow, but it is February in Cary.  ■  Making some progress on my office – at last.  Still quite a bit to go.  ■  I ordered car mats for my CRV from WeatherTech and they arrived today.  Got to put ‘em in my car, but first I want to vacuum the front of the car where they’re going.  Pretty fast service – ordered on Saturday, Jan 31st and they arrived this afternoon – February 3rd.  It appears that they don’t make the mats until you order them.  Yeah, pretty fast service.  ■  And one more picture for Roxanne and Bob.  I know you two miss this!  ■

Monday, February 2, 2015

A lot of snow . . . . .

020215_002 As you can tell, we got a lot of snow.  Not sure how many inches, but quite a few.  They closed the schools today and garbage pickup either.  ■  Our across-the-street neighbor, Jac, has tirelessly used his snow-blower to clear not only his driveway, but also ours and our next door neighbor’s driveway as well.  Thanks, Jac■  And Holly just told me that O'Hare airport reported 19” of the white stuff.  ■  It’s rather cold out ----  7 ° (not –7), but cold enough.  It looks like a cold spell for a few days and then starting to warm up by the weekend.  ■  I’ve been in the process of updating a few pieces of software that I use to new versions.  Takes time to download and install the programs.  ■  Still working on getting my office organized, but I think I’ve lost ground over the past few days.  Not good.  It’s hard to throw things away.  ■  Need to organize my stuff for taxes. 020215_001 Should be pretty simple this year as I’ve had few orders.  I haven’t worked on my website for probably 3 years and my rankings in search engines have gone down.  That’s yet another think on my plate that needs to be done – update my website.  ■  Just about time for bed.  ‘Night.  ■

Super Bowl Party

Due to the 16 inches of snow (that’s a guess), oIMG_3523ne super bowl party was cancelled and we hosted one.  Ours was small.  Our son at 6’1’ or ‘2 was the tallest person.  Holly, maybe the smallest – no, wait – the smallest was Michael at about 22” (yet another guess.)  ■  The picture you see here is of the snack football field that Jac made.  Unbeliveable.  Goal posts out of slim jims, grass done with guacomole, yard lines with some kind of cheese, and two rows of spectators done with chips.  It was really cool.  ■  We think the Seahawks blew it with their lame pass attempt.  Why not run it?  Pass attempt opens possible interception.  Which happened.  Blame the loss on the manager.  It was not the play any of us in our family room would have called.  Bummer.  We were rooting for the Seahawks.  ■  All of our local schools are closed tomorrow.  Too much snow.  Probably a good idea as the busses on the country routes could have major problems with snow drifts.  Better safe than sorry.  ■ 

Monday, January 26, 2015

Snow, wind, and guitars …..

Nice map of the wind in the USA.  Would have loved to have had this when I took a meteorology course in college.  40 years too late.  ■  012615_002I’m in the process of cleaning and organizing my office.  It’s taking longer than I had thought.  One of the steps was to see if I could get all of my guitars, basses, ukes, etc in my office closet.  Nope, but close.  ■  It’s snowing out, but it appears that we’ll only get about an inch.  That’ll be nice.  I really don’t want to have to get out my neighbor’s snow blower.  If it’s only an inch and not heavy then I can do it with a shovel.  ■  Got to go for a blood test tomorrow for the doctor.  So fasting is the order for the rest of the night.  ■ 

Friday, January 23, 2015

Last attempt at people . . . .


This is my last attempt at painting people.  It was a cute photo of our neighbor feeding her grandson, so I thought I’d give it a shot.  ■  It’s almost 4:00 am and I’m up; on my pc blogging with Zoe in my office wanting more biscuits.  And she’s vocal about it…making noises to get my attention; looking at me with pleading eyes.  Ok, I just gave her another biscuit.  ■  The upcoming new version of Windows (Windows 10) along with holography is sounding pretty neat.  Technology moves very quickly.  I wish I were going to be around for the next 50 years to see it.  ■  Band practice was cancelled last night due to illness of one of our members.  ■  Today will be office cleaning/organization day.  I’m going to try and get all of my guitars to fit in my office closet.  I don’t think it’s going to work, but I’m going to try.  I’m also setting up a space to do music recording.  ■  Time either to get back to bed, or feed the dogs and then get back to bed.  ■  Goodnight/good morning . . .. .

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Yet another attempt at painting people . . .


Getting proportions right is always difficult – maybe impossible for me. Or at least impossible at this point.  Practice, practice, practice.  ■  Band practice tonight.  I’ve got to attempt to organize the basement practice area.  To say it’s a disaster is understating its condition.  ■ 

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Maggie Byrd & I playing lapsteel . . . . .


This is my third painting.  It’s Maggie Byrd and I playing lapsteel in our dining room turned into a temporary relaxing reading/playing lapsteel room.  I worked for hours and hours on this.  A true labor of love.  ■  Took my car and dropped it off to get a whole new exhaust system put on.  $1200 for it, but at least it’s cheaper than a car payment.  ■  Tomorrow the band gets together again for another go at it.  I’ve got massive cleaning/organizing to do down the basement before we can practice.  ■ 

Rosemary . . . . .


My attempt at drawing Rosemary out in the snow.  This is probably the best face I’ve done.  Faces are hard to do and get right.  ■  My car is having $1200 worth of work done on it tomorrow.  At least it’s less expensive than having a car payment.  ■ 

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Digital painting . . . . .


I thought this year – ok, last year (Christmas, 2014) that I’d attempt some digital painting.  I’ve done my Abby & Zoe cards, but never tried to do something serious.  I’m terrible at people/faces, etc., but painting something digitally gives one the opportunity to erase, or paint over areas with ease.  Even though you’re painting over ‘mistakes’, it doesn’t mean that you’re not going to make mistakes with your ‘corrections’.  Kudos to the folks that can really paint and have the painting of the person actually look like that person.  That’s really tough.  At any rate I did a total of five paintings.  The one above is the first one and it’s of Rosemary and Maggie Byrd – their first time in snow.  The green tennis ball (yes, it’s a tennis ball) is for Beau, their dog who has a never ending game of “throw the ball and I’ll bring it back.”  ■  I’ll post the other four in my posts here over the next few days.  ■

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Headaches . . . . .

I still get headaches everyday.  Not bad, but they’re there everyday.  I’m reading a blog post about someone who gets HEADACHES every day, but really bad headaches.  Mine are not even noticeable compared to his.  Here’s the link to the article:

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

First post of the new year - 2015


First post of the new year is one of the grandchildren and Grandma taken a few days after Christmas, 2014.  It’s a tad blurry – sorry for the potatoe-quality.  ■  It’s coooold out.  6 ° right now.  Wednesday and Thursday it’ll hit –10 and –14 degrees.  Burrrrr.  ■  Trying to get my office back  in some kind of organized shape.  It needs help.  ■  Short post, but it’s late and it’s time for bed.  ‘Night.  ■