Saturday, January 30, 2010

3rd -not quite Annual - Pony Hunt!

Well lookee here! Yep, yer readin' that right - count 'em - 6 BIG inches of snow, 8 if you measure snow on the sidewalk and its still comin' down! Woo-hoo! This is the most snow we've had here in 10 years. *happy beagle dance*

So....what to do on the eastern shore of Maryland when it snows? Dum-dee-dum-dee-dum *twiddle fingers*. There are no real hills to speak of and boogie boards would have to substitute for sleds anyway. What can we do? Build snowmen? N'ah, been there done that. Have a snowball fight? N'ah, its all powder, not good packing for snowballs. What can we do?

I know, let's go out to Assateague and hunt wild ponies! We'll look at the ocean covered in snow, hike through the woods hunting for ponies, we'll have a great time!

Here were the following obstacles that should have given us pause: It was 21 degrees. The winds were blowing like crazy. The snow/ice pellets were coming down ferociously hard. The roads were not salted, sanded, or really plowed. So of course we took the (normally) 45 minute drive to get out there. It took us an hour and a half to get home.

They hadn't gotten that much snow yet when we left for Assateague about 10 o'clock this morning. We forgot to double our pants. The winds cut right through them. We stopped at the Ranger's Station to update our yearly pass and asked if they knew where the herds were at, because who wants to hunt ponies in 21 degrees with high winds for hours on end?

Well, the Rangers didn't know where the ponies were but they said they had hunters in the woods, so stay on the marked trails. There were bow hunters looking for duck and gun hunters looking for dear. Oh Boy! That would add some excitement to the hunt! So after a really fast dash to look at the ocean, "yep, still there, yep, lots of snow, holy #@!t that's a cold wind!" and running back to the car, I made the executive decision to drive around looking for the ponies before venturing into the woods. Good thing too!

As it turns out, the ponies are pretty smart. They apparently decided the woods weren't a good place to be either. So they were near the bay and the roads as we went toward the west side of the island. They did not look pleased to be covered in snow and were up against stands of trees trying to stay out of the wind. Apparently there are a couple of aggressive stallions who don't want their ladies photographed. A couple came quickly and rather aggressively toward us to make us keep our distance. I've only seen that during mating season before, never in the depths of the winter.

Oh well. Here are the shots we managed to get without getting kicked, bitten or trampled. All in all, I'd say it was a successful hunt!

UPDATE: The official weather report says we've gotten as much as 8 inches!!!!!

The snow on our back deck came in at 7-7 1/4 inches.

Everyone was out in the streets acting like kids. M and I took a nice walk and ran into neighbors skiing down the street.

Ahhhh, pretty!

Okay, last update. We got just under 9 inches at our house, other people got a foot. Woo-hoo!

Friday, January 29, 2010

2 a.m. philosophical musings

So the darn cat woke me up to go outside at 1:30 a.m., and then I couldn't get back to sleep afterward. I'm running on less than 2 hours sleep right now. While lying in bed awake for hours, holding out hope that I might actually fall back asleep, I started my usual train of thought, things I have to do, things I'd like to do, things I used to do, and hey, why don't I do that anymore. One of the things I don't do anymore is write poetry. I've written literally thousands of poems and then just stopped. Probably because I had to produce so much crap just to get the occasional piece that was okay. Anyway, much like my early morning thoughts, I digress.

My mind started worrying about my daughter, who may be planning to move to Florida, and how she'll be so far away, and I won't be close enough to help her, save her if she needs saving. Then worrying what I would ever do if I lost one of my children. Then thinking about life after death, and remembering a brief conversation M and I had a couple weeks back after her 101 year old grandmother died. (I told you my thoughts were rambling.)

I said to her that I didn't really worry about where we go when we die. I figured we just went back to where we were before we were born. That got me thinking some more (not then, but at 2 a.m. today) that maybe we're asking the wrong question when we ask what happens after we die.

This whole scientific theory that matter can neither be created nor destroyed, it only changes form is mentioned a lot by people when they discuss death. We know we have physical bodies and if buried, they break down and go back into the earth to become parts of other organisms. We believe there is an electro-magnetic charge that is our soul and that it must go somewhere or become something else.

Why don't we wonder where our children came from, where we came from? If matter is neither created nor destroyed, it only changes form, we can see on a cellular level how the egg is fertilized and uses nutrients from the mother to gather form and turn into a baby. We haven't yet figured out where that electromagnetic charge comes from that sparks those cells into living. Where was that soul energy before it took up residence in that human baby?

We don't tend to think about life before life, yet we dwell on life after death. Is that odd? Yeah, I think our souls are out there, part of the greater universe, the energy of the cosmos, a creation of a God of some sort, and we come into these bodies for a short time, then return from whence we came. These are just some of the many thoughts that keep me awake when I should be sleeping.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

And so we begin again...

The Spring semester began yesterday. I begin my Tuesday/Thursday teaching schedule today, and I'm still really tired from last semester. Don't get me wrong, I am _extremely_ grateful to have any job, and thankful I have two. Also, of the jobs I have, only one is ever very stressful. They're not very physically taxing, so why do I feel like I desperately need to take a couple weeks off and I haven't even really begun this semester? I worry that I'm becoming a whiner. Maybe I should just focus on decluttering the life I have and continue to work toward not over-extending myself. I began that last semester, and it really has made a difference, but I just feel I need to do something more to de-stress and relax. I'm not sure why. Tell me about your stresses so I'll realize I don't have it anywhere near as bad as others.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Courage 101

Let's hear it for Cindy McCain, wife of former Republican Presidential Nominee, John McCain in her stance for equality in the California Proposition 8 gay marriage debate.

Thursday, January 14, 2010


I don't know whether this is a condition of our decaying society or an aberration. When I first saw the video below, I remember thinking, "who the hell does she think she is?" I mean, where are you at in your head that you think the proper response to a mistake on your food order is hostility, violence and property damage of about $3,000? What kind of environment does this person live in that it's okay to do this, that this is how you handle yourself and disputes in society?

"This is Alesha McMullen, and she is not lovin' it. Jackson County Prosecutors charged 19-year-old McMullen Tuesday with first-degree property damage after a "Crime Stoppers" tip identified her as the alleged rageoholic McDonald's customer who destroyed three cash registers and a water dispenser on December 27, 2009." (Full Story)

Visit for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Music Review - Holly Williams

Okay, now technically I did a mini-music review of Holly Williams back in November. (Nov Review)after I'd heard some of her music on NPR. NPR Weekend Edition July 2009

I immediately got hooked on her "Three days in bed with a stranger." So the NPR interview got me over to YouTube to listen to some of her songs. I found so many that I liked that I put both her CDs: Here With Me and The Ones We Never Knew on my Christmas Wish List.

Santa M was very good to me this year and I received both CDs. I've been playing them continuously in my office to spare M the repetition. Although the first time we listened to The Ones We Never Knew M immediately liked it as well.

These two CDs, although Miss Williams writes most of the music herself or co-writes with people, are very different from one another. The Ones We Never Knew is more of a light rock, pop/folk type of album, whereas, Here With Me is more a "back to the basics," somewhat religious, roots of old country, type of album. You can actually hear the difference between the two CDs.

So here are a couple of my favorite songs from each CD. I actually have a number of favorite songs on each CD. First from The Ones We Never Knew is the following song: "Sometimes," I also really like "Everybody's Waiting For A Change," but couldn't find a video clip of that. You can view her original videos on YouTube or listen to them on her website (Holly Williams), but I couldn't post them here, so these videos are the next best thing.

Holly Williams

I wish I were a little girl in this life
No one could resist my little girl smile
I wish I were a baby in this love
I'd be cradled in your arms day and night

I wish I were an old man, a scholar
With the wisdom of a 1,000 men before me
I wish I were a funny dream that haunted
The people I love every time they were down

I wish I was a fine wine
I wish I were a good drug
Hey, and if I were Jesus, maybe I could heal all of us
Just like a good lover, which one do you prefer?
In a world full of vices, I wish I were a little bird

I wish I were the sunset in Verona
I'd make a beautiful picture every time I went to bed
Or maybe more the sunrise waking up to a sad man
And hey, if I were the blue skies, I'd never rain on him

I wish I was a fine wine
I wish I were a good drug
Hey, and if I were Jesus, maybe I could heal all of us
Just like a good lover, which one do you prefer?
In a world full of vices, I wish I were a little bird

I wish I were an angel in ‘52
In a blue Cadillac on the eve of the New Year
And there I would have saved him, the man who sang the blues
But maybe he is listening right now
Hopefully he's listening right now


Now, from Here With Me, this is "Without Jesus Here With Me."

Without Jesus Here With Me

I don't talk to him that much
I know I never pray enough
Oh but I don't know where I would be
Without Jesus here with me

I don't know why I'm still here
Or why I lived that Wednesday morn
They were raising hands and screaming holy
Jesus was right there with me

I gladly would have died that day to save the child who went away
But you can't trade a life like that, I guess it's part of the master plan
My sister fought, my daddy cried, my mama begged him for our lives
And I don't know where I would be
Without Jesus here with me

The preacher tried to make me learn
I memorized his favorite verse
But Hank's words they taught me everything
Thank God I saw the light for me

I gladly would have died that day to save the child who went away
But you can't trade a life like that, I guess it's part of the master plan
My sister fought my daddy cried my mama begged him for our lives
And I don't know where I would be
Without Jesus here with me

Before I knew his mercy, before I knew his grace
I was searching out the answers in a dark and hollow place
Before I felt his presence, before I saw his face I was lost
Oh I was lost

I still don't talk to him that much
I know I never pray enough
Oh but I don't where I would be without Jesus here with me

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Massanutten, Virginia

Greetings from cold, snowy Massanutten resort. Well, the conditions on the ski slopes were too icy, so M didn't get the opportunity to break a leg. We all went tubing this afternoon though and had a great time.

We went up to visit our friends C and D for the weekend. Here's my son, B, with D behind him on the tube lift.

Here's M going up on the lift as well.

Here's a view from the top of the tubing hill.

Yours truly all bundled up to protect my delicate skin from the horrible cold winds.

Here's our friend C, she was also equally concerned about protecting her face. Just a couple of burka babes I suppose.

Here's M doing her "Salahi" pose. Remember the White House crashers? M said, "did you ever notice in every picture of that woman her head is tipped unnaturally to the side." We figured somebody must have told her that she looked better from that angle. It reminds us of when my daughter's bunny got an ear infection and it twisted its head almost upside down because it didn't know which way was up.

Hope you're all having a good weekend and are keeping warm.

Friday, January 8, 2010

Snow Day!!

Well, B has a snow day at any rate. M and I still have to go in to work. Not to worry though, we plan on leaving early for a ski weekend (for M) in Massanutten. B and I plan on tubing. Have a great weekend!

Thursday, January 7, 2010


I'm sitting in my office with an electric heater aimed at my legs and arms, trying to stay warm in a very drafty 100+ year old building without insulation. I'm not looking forward to the continued cold weather they're calling for here. While looking at the CNN website, I saw this video about the snow and cold in Britain. Just thought I'd share and ask CyberKitten if he's gotten any of the white stuff. I do remember him mentioning how cold it was there.