Friday, February 20, 2015

Cats of Arkansas

ssshhhh... do not mention the tail. She's very sensitive about her sad little rat-tail.
No laughing!
Charlie, with his cat-sitter.
Yeeesss, Charlie, your people will be home soon.
This is the barfiest cat in the universe. Beware when walking to the bathroom in the night with the lights off. In the morning be sure to watch for fresh hazards. This comes with sound effects, too.
Snoopy again!
Snoopy is a very fine cat. Foods can be left out on the countertop without any fear of molestation from her. She simply cannot get up there unless they leave the kitchen stool nearby. She's not much better at jumping down, either - I saw her getting down from the card table and nearly miss the chair just a cat-height away. She is pouting now because Dad and I laughed. We will not be forgiven until dinnertime.
Bruno is large and can easily make it onto the countertop so we think we know who was tasting the muffins while we were out searching for lunch yesterday. As you can see, he is too large for the cat-tree and hangs over both sides when he lays down. Bruno likes to go out on the sun porch for a closer look at the birds and squirrels bustling about the birdfeeder. But then he remembers it's cold out there.

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Snow day

Got up in the morning, and the yard was all white.
The birds were happy to be fed.

D started in on clearing the driveway, but there's a thick layer of ice at the bottom. Guess he'll be spending another night.
One thing we did need: half&half for all the coffee we were planning on drinking. And some wine for dinner, yeah. So Dad & I schlepped about 4 and a half miles to Walmart & back for these items. The only bad part of the road was where it had been scraped down to the ice so you could slip on it.

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Day with Darrell

 All days start out with cat petting.
Exceptionally, this day continued with a hike around Hobbs state park.

The lake views were few & far between from our chosen trailhead. Pretty new lake, since it still had lots of tree trunks standing.

Down at a lakeside campsite, we found an abandoned pot next to the firepit. Hand-made. The lid did not fit at all. Some dad is saying - oh, dang, must have lost that out camping. Will you make me another one, please?
Do have the Islander burger with grilled pineapple. Do think again before having The Later Years (Elvis reference) with peanut butter and banana and a couple more items that do not really belong on a burger. Onion rings also a yes. And just go ahead and admit that the battered & deep fried green beans are not really a vegetable but just a scaffolding for sauce.

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

George Washington Carver National Monument

Went to Rogers to see my brother, and took a day trip up to Missouri to see the GW Carver National Monument. Not many cars in the lot! But certainly worth a visit.
It was not Monday, so they were not closed.
Classic Missouri farmhouse. This is the Carver house from the mid-19th century.
Yep, taking your picture.
Guess I need to clean the lens again.
Leaving the visitors center they told us of a restaurant we could find by going down the road about 3 miles and turning left: the Undercliff. We missed the turn and just continued on in the direction back to Rogers, thinking we'd just stop wherever on the way. Rounded a turn, and there it was. From the porch there's a great view of the railroad tracks and the endless train hauling coal. It was a long enough train I actually got tired of watching it go by, and went in for a nice chili dog with onion rings & a beer.

Hasenpfeffer was mentioned somehow, and Mom did not believe we could score a rabbit just like that, in the middle of nowhere.
But we did. Darrell knows the right place for bunny, and we walked out with the last one. Assorted parts, that is. Good ones, too.
To accompany our bun, we thought we'd make spaetzle. Only, Mom is gluten-free, so we thought we'd experiment with potato flour. It's the eggs that stick the starch together, right, with a bit of milk to thin the batter out? Just toss it in there instead of wheat flour and then adjust as necessary.
That did take some adjusting.
Then we thought we'd pan-fry the spaetzle bits for a minute, as much to reheat them as to give some kind of form and texture to the stuff. That was also interesting. Tasted like potatos.

Monday, February 16, 2015

A walk around Panther Bay

That's not Panther Bay, it's just the stream that separates the library grounds from the U of Arkansas in Mountain Home.
 One of the bridges across the lake. Formed by yet another dam across the White River, this is one of those lakes that has arms going for miles, and you just have to put a bridge across it or you'll go miles and miles to go around.
 Bald eagle nest. They're home (see that little white head spot?), but they're not posing today.
 Parents in their binocular harnesses.
 Boat docks pretty empty this time of year.
 Geese going somewhere. Seems late to go south & early to go north. Perhaps they are flying west.
Eagles still not doing much but having a late morning at the nest. Time for us to go.

Saturday, February 14, 2015

Home improvement

Piece of the garage spontaneously jumped ship this morning. That is the approved story, according to official sources.
 And one,
 and two,
and just like new.
Or, at least, like it was before.

Tuesday, February 10, 2015


Vacation time!
 Gorgeous day to drive around St Louis, isn't it? No bothersome sun, no tedious snow. Let's go look at that arch thing they're so proud of here. Exit here, keep right, go left, right again, here's the exit to the parking lot... er... no, it's the bridge across to Illinois.
 We didn't really mean to go to Illinois. I mean, what's over there? The road just went there on it's own.
We did get to look back, though, and see that the entire Arch park area was ripped up and under redesign. No going there today, or indeed until spring.
So here we are in Illinois. Might as well see the Cahokia Mounds. The guy at the gas station said to go left, follow 255 north to exit 24, and go left. The other guy at the gas station said just follow his car. People can be so nice sometimes.

 No, those are not hills, they are sacred Native American ceremonial sites. They are closed on Mondays or I would have learned all about them. You can still walk around a bit, in the biting wind.
Dad was going to park in the nearest spot, in the handicapped row. Why not? The visitors center is closed. Nobody else is here. But we said to park farther on. Good thing we did, because the cops in their suv finished their donuts and decided to check out the lone car at the Mounds while we were out walking.
We have an actual mission today, which is one reason we dinked about St Louis for so long. Barbecue. There is a barbecue joint in Cuba that we really like, and we are betting it will not be closed just on the pretext it's Monday.
 We hope it is still there.
 We hope we will be able to find it.
 We pray for guidance and direction in this crazy world.
 We worry we will run out of gas.
But even the state highway system is on our side.
 We are saved!

 Mom & Dad are happy. I'm happy.
The Missouri Hicks people are happy.
It is a good day.