Friday, December 01, 2006

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Snow city *happy dance*

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Snow monsters yesterday

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View from the patio yesterday

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Thursday, November 30, 2006

Our Condition is...

This afternoon while zipping down the highway at a whopping 40mph, I managed to snap these pics to show driving conditions. Actually, the pictures don't really show how bad the roads really were. There is a nasty layer of ice all over the pavement... I think maybe the one photo kind of shows that ;)

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Blizzard warning today. (deja vu-I'm in Ohio again?)

Let it Snow, Let it Sleet, Let it Rain...

Our first winter storm of the season is upon us. Last night little spits of rain and sleet were coming down but this morning it was loud spits of sleet. The wind is blowing something fierce and its blistery cold! I toyed with the idea of whether to try to make it to work or not. My favorite weather guy and the OHP were all over the tv telling people to stay home and not to get out on the roads. After a few phone calls, I decided to try to make it to the office, but leave about an hour later... so hopefully the typical morning traffic would already be at work - if they were even going to work.

I made it without mishap - some other misfortunate people did not. I saw a few semi's, cars and trucks off the side of the highway. From what I hear, its supposed to get really bad this afternoon. We'll see how long I stick it out here.

What I saw when I opened the door this morning.... ice.

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Cat Tales

This past weekend, sis and fam visited out of town and TBC and I agreed to feed the menagerie while they were gone. It currently consists of two rambunctious dogs, Ho Kitty, three half-grown kittens from her first batch and the five survivors from her latest litter who are currently confined to the bathroom nursery. TBC did the actual labor involved and Friday evening he brought their only ‘daughter’ back to enjoy a slumber party reunion with her two full brothers, Oreo and Snickers. When she wasn’t licking my bare feet she was biting my hands and her constant, restless movement resulted in me having a heck of a time snapping this slate blur of frenzied activity. I think she’s a strong candidate for kitty Ritalin. As you can see, she’s a real cutie but I’m sure she is now scarred for life after her horrendous experience with us. No doubt she tearfully related her forced overnighter at her relatives’ house with faltering meows. It seems dear Snickers thought she was quite fetching in her soft, gray-striped, fluffy coat and took quite the fancy to her, avidly pursuing her with lustful overtures which she bravely deflected. His virtuous brother, Oreo, did not mimic Snicker’s wayward behavior but treated his sis with the respect their familial relationship deserved. Though certain this predicament would rear its head (hehe) in the near future, I’m wondering if Mr. Amorous hit pussy puberty sooner than expected. After observing his relentless pursuit of, er, tail, I foresee somber snipping in his near future.

Ways Blogging is Like Sex

11. At first, you’re just blogging once every week or two, but it’s not long before you’re doing it a couple of times a day.

10. A lot of kids fool around with blogs in high school but the serious blogging doesn’t start until college.

9. People really only have one good entry at a time, but will often fake multiple entries because they think it makes their readers happy.

8. It hurts when you’ve blogged and the next day your readers pretend like it never happened.

7. You know better than to blog when you’re drunk, but it’s just more fun, even if you do it with topics you wouldn’t have touched when you were sober.

6. The day after you’ve blogged drunk, you’ve got a lot of explaining to do to your regular readers.

5. Men blog like they’ve got an audience, but women like to keep it intimate.

4. You have to vary your technique once in a while, otherwise your readers will lose interest and you’ll drift apart.

3. When you first start to blog, you don’t ever have any long term readers but all you can ever think about is blogging. After a while, you do find some regular readers, but then blogging becomes a chore and you start to feel guilty if it’s been a while.

2. Most people blog at night, in the privacy of their own homes, but there’s always some jackass strutting around bragging that he prefers to blog in the office at lunch or at the local park.

1. Everyone knows that if he ever did in fact blog in his office or in the park, he was alone and just blogging into his palm.

Monday, November 27, 2006

Gimme More!

You can see a few more Farm pictures here.

Green Acres We Are There!!!

On Thanksgiving we all packed up and headed to Cousin Tonya's house. She, the hubby and two darling kiddos live way out in timbuktu country side clear on the other side of the state. We cityfied folks had a grand ol time gettin' down and gettin' dirty. Sheri and I climbed into the cow pit and manhandled manuer (sp?) - cow poop.
We climbed on top of the huge bails of hay and ran across them. They are alot bigger than you think... and from the top they are even bigger!
Richard took his turn. Actually, we made him go first to make sure it was safe... before we got up there to mess around. All the kids had been playing on them all day...
Another Glamour Shot of us two standing high on the bails.
Us perched on the fence looking out over the countryside. I'll get more pictures posted and notice my hair is always a mess. Sheri's can blow and it's still picture perfect... I, on the otherhand, always appear to be eating mine.

Sunday, November 26, 2006

Follow the Yellow Brick Road

I’ve always been crazy about old pathways (and apparently I’m not alone) as they are filled with romance and mystique. I love to scrutinize where a road begins, or sadly, where it finishes its vital course. Route 66 played an enormous part in the history of American highways and much has been written about “The Mother Road.”

Two of my favorite personal reminisces are of Highway 12 on the Outer Banks. Parts of it are forever washing away and as the landscape plays hide and seek with the encroaching sand, the vista changes with each passing storm. Abrupt curves in the otherwise straight road tell the tale of the constant fight to keep the highway one step ahead of the hungry ocean. The bends are the result of rerouting the road after erosion and storms gobbled up dunes and pavement.

North Carolina Highway 12, which provides access to the Outer Banks and connects its communities, is another line in the sand. The state has spent tens of millions of dollars rebuilding, relocating and trying to protect the highway only to have sections of it continually washed away by the sea. Critics say it is an exercise in futility and a waste of state and federal tax dollars. To some, Highway 12 is a symbol, not only of the problem on the Outer Banks, but on most of the state’s barrier islands.

I also fondly remember the eastward development of Highway 64 back when the extension only got as far as east of Rocky Mount. As the years past, it morphed from a sleepy two-lane ribbon of pavement winding through every small town to a bustling four-lane bypass marching toward the welcoming beach.

It is only proper and fitting that I remain completely fascinated with these most famous stretches of ancient construction…

Hadrian's Wall
(Latin: Vallum Hadriani) was a stone and turf fortification built by the Roman Empire across the width of Great Britain to prevent military raids by the tribes of Scotland to the north, to improve economic stability and provide peaceful conditions in the Roman province of Britannia to the south, to physically mark the frontier of the Empire, and to separate the unruly Selgovae tribe in the north from the Brigantes in the south and discourage them from uniting. The wall was the northern border of the Empire in Britain for much of the Roman Empire's rule, and also the most heavily fortified border in the Empire. In addition to its use as a military fortification, it is thought that the gates through the wall would also have served as customs posts to allow trade taxation.

Sections of Hadrian's Wall remain near Greenhead and along the route, though other large sections have been dismantled over the years to use the stones for various nearby construction projects.

Hadrian's Wall was 80 Roman miles long, its width and height dependent on the construction materials which were available nearby. It extended from the west from Wallsend on the River Tyne to the shore of the Solway Firth. TheA69 and B6318 roads follow the course of the wall as it starts in Newcastle upon Tyne to Carlisle, then on round the northern coast of Cumbria. The Wall is entirely in England and south of the border with Scotland by 15 kilometres (9 mi) in the west and 110 kilometres (68 mi) in the east.

In the months after Hadrian's death in 138, the new emperor, essentially abandoned the wall, though leaving it occupied in a support role, and began building a new wall in Scotland proper, about 160 kilometres (100 mi) north, the Antonine Wall. Antonine was unable to conquer the northern tribes and so when Marcus Aurelius became emperor, he abandoned the Antonine Wall and occupied Hadrian's Wall once again in 164. It remained occupied by Roman troops until their withdrawal from Britain. In the late 4th century, barbarian invasions, economic decline, and military coups loosened the Empire's hold on Britain. By 410, the Roman administration and its legions were gone, and Britain was left to look to its own defenses and government. The garrisons, by now probably made up mostly of local Britons who had nowhere else to go, probably lingered on in some form for generations. Archaeology is beginning to reveal that some parts of the Wall remained occupied well into the 5th century. But in time the wall was abandoned and fell into ruin. Over the centuries a large proportion of the stone was reused in other local building which continued until the 20th century. A significant portion of the wall still exists, particularly the mid-section, and for much of its length the wall can be followed on foot.

Appian Way

In ancient times, Roman roads were considered monuments. Over a period of centuries, the Romans built an efficient network that ultimately stretched for over 50,000 miles in an area than now belongs to more than 30 countries. The first important via publica, or highway as it would be called today, was the Via Appia, or Appian Way. Known as the queen of roads, it linked Rome with Brundisium, the port city that was the gateway to the East. This road took its name from Appius Claudius Caecus, the Roman official who started building it about 312 B.C.E.

Roman roads were carefully designed and were built to be solid, useful, and beautiful, with a destination by means of the shortest possible route, which explains why many have long straight stretches. Often, though, the roads had to follow the natural contours of the terrain. Where possible, in hilly and mountainous areas, Roman engineers built their roads halfway up the slopes, along the sunny side of the mountain. For road users, this position minimized any inconvenience that might be caused by adverse weather conditions. Roman roads, then, have proved to be extraordinary and lasting monuments that one may still view today.

And who can forget that mythical trail from childhood, the glorious Yellow Brick Road? Whatever the goal, it’s about the journey, not necessarily the destination. Here’s to wanderlust and adventure!! ;)

It's Never Easy

As I previously mentioned, Richard and I avoided the public on Friday and opted to stay home and work around the house. After a few mishaps:

me stepping on a light, breaking it, picking up the string to put a new bulb in and it shocking the @#$! out of me (they were still plugged in); hanging lights all around the house only to come up about 4 feet short of finishing; readjusting half the lights to try to come up with the extra 4 feet; deciding 'screw it... we'll go buy more lights' and plugging them in where we stopped (to test the lights); finding that the outside outlet doesnt work; rerouting the extension cord thru the garage to test the lights; then finding about 1/3 of the string that shocked the @#$! out of me doesn't work and it's on the highest peak over the garage

We proudly displayed our lights on Friday night with a black space where the 1/3 of the string wasn't working, and then on Saturday, Richard and my dad replaced the bad string, added lights to finish out the house and checked out the outlet that isn't working. We now have working and completed christmas lights.