December 28, 2007

Hug your pet!

Had a bad lunch today. I was letting Abe out in the backyard when I noticed a couple of poodle like dogs running up the sidewalk in front of the house. I had never seen them before so I really didn't think anything of it. Then not more than a minute later I heard a thud followed by a dog crying. Abe of course got all upset so I put him in the truck and went out to find out what had happened. Meanwhile there was a lady walking up the alley calling out names. I asked if she was looking for two dogs and she said yes. At that point a guy in a black Lexus about a 1/3 block away said he had just hit a dog. The dog was sitting by the front drivers side tire. The lady of course went running up to it and I walked up there to help. The dog of course was terrified and hurt. The owner was in tears and the guy that hit the dog felt so bad. All he could say was that the dog ran out in the street and that there was no way he could stop in time. The dog owner shuffled the dog out of the on coming traffic area and in front of the car that hit the dog. Of course the dog was trying to bite the owner as she was trying to pick him up. She finally just grabbed him to get him in her arms. The dog swung its head around and bit the lady in the chin. Meanwhile I am trying to get cars slowed down and to pass with caution. I looked over at the corner and saw a lady and a guy in an SUV that had seen it all happen. The lady had been driving but she just sat there with her hand over her mouth and crying.

I walked with the owner to help her find her other dog as all she could say was that she had left a 14 year old in the house with two infants. I told her no problem that I would help her find her other dog. Sounded like the 14 year old had let the dogs out and not shut the gate to the backyard of their house so that is how the dogs had gotten out. Anyway the 14 year old had found the other dog and got it in the house. Another neighbor came to help out and we tried to talk to the owner as to what she needed to do next which of course was to take the dog to the vet and then get herself looked at. Not sure she would need stitches but it was not a little scratch by any means. Of course it was hard to help her as she had the dog in her arms and he was so terrified that he would not let anyone near him or the owner. I think the dog has either back, leg or hip injuries by the way he just sat there on the road.

As I left the owner was putting the dog in on the porch of her house and calling her husband. I felt so helpless. I walked back to the truck were I had placed Abe and gave him a big hug and kiss. He could tell something was wrong. Even now here at work this afternoon he has spent more time then usual laying under my chair. Not sure what will happen to the dog if it will have surgery to repair the damage or if they will have the dog put to sleep. Just a very sad ordeal.......

Don't forget to hug your pet today and everyday!

Sushi-time!


Hit Tokyo Japanese restaurant last night with the roomy (Kris), Kris's brother-in-law (David) and niece (Maren). We got the table talked into just ordering sushi for supper!..YUM! We had a green dragon (excellent-pictured above!), peanut and avocado, California roll, Philadelphia, tempura sweet potato, tempura pumpkin (very good and was very mild) and tuna avocado..of course edamomay (sp?) also. These were all great. I was very proud of Maren and Kris as they are not HUGE sushi eaters but dug right in and had a great time and even enjoyed the combination we had ordered.

The big let down of the meal was their ice cream. The waitress called it by another name but we have had green tea ice cream at other Japanese places but this was very odd. It had almost like a gelatinous coating on the outside of it. We even went so far as to describe it as melted gummy bear consistency and of course this led into jokes about the gummy bears squealing as they were melted in the pan...but I digress.... It was hard to get a bite of this desert with the little fork that looked like it came from a relish tray. The other thing is that they serve it in a size that was also surprising. It looked like a very small hockey puck maybe even a third of the size of a normal hockey puck and same shape. I had the sesame seed flavor, David and Maren had the green tea and the Kris had strawberry. The strawberry was the best and like David said of the sesame seed one is that after the first bite it was like someone hit you over the head with the sesame seed! It was intense sesame flavor. Not so sure I would order those again but we are a bit adventurous with food and that made it fun plus it gave me something to blog about today since I went all out yesterday!

December 27, 2007

Meridian Trail


I know I have posted a LOT today...record for me but I ran across this article and had to post it! This will be nice when it is done as long as it is kept up! (hope this dude is ok with me copying his article on to my blog....I left his name on it just in case!)

Above is the picture taken by me on the South Dakota side of the Meridian bridge. This bridge links Nebraska to South Dakota on Hwy 81. There is a new bridge being built (much to my dismay!) to the west of the old bridge or to the right in the picture above. The top part of the Meridian bridge is for traffic heading north into South Dakota and the bottom is for heading south into Nebraska. It used to be an lift bridge back in its day but all the weights were taken off a lot of years ago. The span between the two towers would lift up to allow river traffic to go under the bridge.

Thursday, December 27, 2007
Meridian Trail Project Awarded $170,000 Grant
By: Nathan Johnson (yankton.net)

Officials are ecstatic about the recent announcement of a grant to fund the majority of a recreational trail along the southern shore of the Missouri River.
The Nebraska Department of Roads recently announced that the Nebraska Meridian Trail project had been awarded more than $170,000 in Transportation Enhancement grant money.
The remaining cost of the estimated $213,000 project is expected to be covered by matching funds from the Lewis and Clark Natural Resource District (L&CNRD), Cedar County (Neb.) and the City of Yankton.
"It is exciting. We were finally able to accomplish phase one to get the trail started," said Tom Moser, the manager of the Hartington, Nebraska-based L&CNRD. His organization has tried to secure funding for the project during the course of three years.
The planned 10-foot wide, 6,200-linear-foot recycled crushed concrete trail will begin near the Gavins Point Dam and run parallel along Highway 121 to Aten, Neb. It is the first phase of what is being considered a four-phase project that will eventually connect the dam to the Meridian Bridge and the Corps of Discovery Welcome Center along Highway 81.
Moser said he hopes that funding can be secured for a phase per year.
"I'm real hopeful on that because, when the old Meridian Bridge gets turned over as a trail for the City of Yankton, we need someplace to go," he said. "That's going to pull a lot of weight when we go back with a funding application in subsequent years."
The total cost of the four-phase project is undetermined, Moser said.
Now that funding has been obtained for the first phase, he said an engineering and permitting process must be completed before construction commences.
Moser said he hopes that construction can begin in the spring.
It's gratifying to see entities in both Nebraska and South Dakota cooperating to accomplish something that will benefit the entire region, Moser said.
"You've got a beautiful trail going along the north side of the (Missouri) river to the dam," he said. "Wouldn't it be super to be able to get across Gavins Point Dam and come back on the Nebraska side to see something a little different?"
Moser said the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has plans to build trails that connect to the Gavins Point Dam itself, as well as the Visitors Center on Calumet Bluff.
The Discovery Bridge, which will cross the Missouri River at Yankton, is expected to be complete before the end of 2008. Once it becomes operational, the Meridian Bridge will be converted into a recreational trail. The City of Yankton is currently working on plans to make its downtown area more appealing to pedestrians and bicyclists. It is also considering plans for the wooded area it owns on the south side of the Meridian Bridge.

Drug testing passport


The professional bike racers biological passports should be ready for the 2008 season.

The passport is an individual electronic record for each rider in which the results of all blood and urine testing is collated over a period of time. It will also have results of each individual urine and blood test with markers for blood and steroid parameters.

The UCI will increase the number of test in 2008. Each rider will be subjected to 6 or 12 test depending on what article you read. In order to carry out the testing in the right conditions the UCI will have to be informed of the whereabouts and training schedule of EACH RIDER. (HHMMM....I hope Robobank and Micheal Rassmuson are reading up on this!)

After all the test have been compiled a panel of seven experts will decipher the possible variations of each riders haematological levels.

Of course this is going to cost a LOT of money but the UCI, Teams, Riders, WADA and the French Ministry of Sport are all helping to offset the cost.

I hope this works. Some people have their doubts also. The one thing is that I hope they have security in place to keep people from tampering with the passports. To me it sounds like a nightmare trying to keep track of every ones whereabouts and training rides. This coming from people that can not run a lab correctly...was that my outside voice?....SORRY.....Yes I still think Floyd Landis was innocent!

It will be interesting to sit back and watch!

Christmas recap

I know I am late with the Christmas recap but since I got tagged I thought I should take care of that issue first!

Christmas was great with lots of great gifts, laughs, food and not much sleep. I was happy to go back to work to get some rest!..hahaha. The funny of the weekend was a slip of the tongue so to speak by my roomies brother-in-law. We were talking about movies and the Johnny Depp movie Sweeney Todd came up. He got the first name Sweeney correct but the second word Todd came up as a female anatomy slang personal / undercarriage area that starts with a T. Pretty funny. We laughed and laughed. I was glad I didn't have a mouth full of libations or food at the time as it would have found its way all over the table. I am sure others were grateful also. I called him Sweeney the rest of the weekend.

We had snow over Christmas about 5 inches of white fluffy snow. It was really pretty coming down in big flakes but the roads were not fun coming back from the farm. I got the sidewalk and driveway, we loving call the luge, all scooped off over lunch yesterday and then the roomie helped with the upper part of the driveway and also when the plow finally came by last night we got that all scooped. That would have been nasty if we would have waited until this morning to scoop. Oh well it is done and I have to say our sidewalk and driveway look to be the best kept on the block from this snow! We do have a snow blower but I decided to scoop to work off a little of that Christmas cheer! I did notice that the fire hydrant for our area, across the street, might need some scooping so might do that at some point soon. Seems to be some nasty fires this time of year and the people who should be taking care of the fire hydrant have not so I will take care of it I guess this time.

December 26, 2007

Tagged

I have been tagged by Cycle SD dang it. Not really sure how all this works but I know I am suppose to write down 5 things that people do not know about me then I am to tag other bloggers. The problem is that the other bloggers are ones that have been tagged already!..not sure how to handle that!

1) I competed in the Junior Olympics back in the 80's throwing shot put. It was at Wake Forrest University.

2) I raced motocross when I was younger (teenager). Mini-bikes and enduro class. I race in a 100 mile race that was brutal. It was riding the same course over and over and over. I was so tired and sore by the time I got off the bike that my dad almost had to pry my hands off the handlebars. I have a few trophies for my dirt bike accomplishments.

3) I wrote some sports for the the Yankton Press and Dakotan. Just the little snippets from area schools.

4) I can run a metal lathe. I worked at the Freeman Company in Yankton for a while and ran a metal lathe and centerless grinder. The Freeman Company made parts for airplanes.

5) I competed in a bike race (back in the early 80s) at the Living History Farms in Des Moines, IA. I finished first in my class but found out later that my sister really beat me as I was following a couple guys in front of me that missed part of the course and since they missed part of the course I did also. I told the officials that but they still gave me a frozen turkey (the race was around Thanksgiving time) for my efforts. I kept asking myself as I was riding in the race..What that HELLl was I thinking? When the race was over all I could think about was how fun it was!

December 21, 2007

Happy Holidays

The holidays are coming upon us at a very rapid pace now. I am dreading the trip to the grocery store tonight..UGH! Oh well....we are picking up some libations so it will be worth the trip or at least kill the pain of the trek once we get home! This will be my last post for a few days with all the holiday events going on, I will be very busy so just wanted to say...

May you find the true meaning of Christmas this year and hold it in your heart all year long!

Travel safe and may you have a great Christmas!

Velodrome crash

December 19, 2007

Biking update

Micheal Rasmussen is going to sue his old cycle team Robobank. The Dane, who lied to the UCI (international cycling union) about his where abouts during some training ride, is saying that his team Robobank knew all along where he was training at but yet they fired him. This could get ugly. I hope everyone has paperwork or proof our it will turn into a he said they said thing. The real thing here is that he missed 2 drug testings. A missed drug testing is not good. It is almost as negative as having a positive doping blood test. We will have to see how this all plays out.

Team LPR has a few good riders for their team this year. Paolo Savodelli (former Disco rider) Danilo diLuca, Damiano Cunego and Paolo Bettini.

Where is Ivan Basso? He has been banned from the sport until October 24, 2008. In the mean time he is trying to have a positive image by riding for Intervita a non-governmental organization to benefit disadvantaged children in the southern hemisphere. Will this make him look better in the public eye?......We will have to see.

Another rider I that is fun to watch during the TDF is Tom Boonen. He is a sprinter for team Quickstep so for all you novice TDF people out there, he would not be in contention to win the TDF but he would shoot for what they call the GREEN jersey. This is the sprinters jersey. Anyway Big Tom was named Belgian Sportsman of the Year! Congrats Toms but honestly, I am not putting anyone down from Belgian but how many star athletes do they have in that country? .....hhmmm......

Trek will be the bike of choice for the Astana team this year. Like that is a BIG surprise!
With a big chunk of the team and the directer being from the old Discovery team, which was a Trek team, Trek was the logical choice to follow

December 18, 2007

Christmas lights

Last night we went out and about in town looking for the Christmas lights. We went to Brandon to see a light show set to music with all proceeds going to The Banquet. The show was ok but not even close to how good the Crooks one is. The good thing is that the donations go to a good cause. We hit Fireplace Lane, Train Lane, Penguin Lane, Churchhill Lane, Polar Bear Lane and looked at some random house decorations. I have to say that some of the lanes had a lot to be desired. Seems as though some people didn't care. A lot less people living on the lanes had not decorated than in years past. Of course there is the occasional house that is OVERCOME by Christmas. It looked like someone has puked Christmas all over their front yard. For those people...sometimes more is NOT better! I guess maybe they are trying to make up for the people that do not decorate outside.... GOD ONLY KNOWS!

December 17, 2007

Christmas firsts...............



What a month so far. We have had a lot of first for us! 1) We are done Christmas shopping (done at least a couple weeks ago)!, 2) We are done wrapping Christmas presents (we are usually wrapping the day before), 3)We put up the Christmas Tree (had not been done for a few years), 4) We ordered Christmas cards to send out!(of course we have to actually send them out to make this count!), 5) We took pictures of Abe in front of the tree and as you can tell he was REALLY happy about that!, 6) We took our gifts out to Kris's moms already in preparation for the Christmas festivities and 7) The libations are chilling in the garage at Joan's, 8) We are going to drive around with the boy (Abe) after work tonight and look at the lights (we have not done that in a few years either) Abe loves looking at the animated lights.

So, what has gotten into us? I have no idea. I think we started shopping VERY early and got things done than we had all this free time left thanks to using the quickness of internet shopping. I just cringed at the thought of going to the mall and shopping now. Think of all the energy wasted! Physical (my energy is very precious) and just all the vehicles running waiting for the lights to change to make it to the next store or driving around the parking lot to find the parking space closest to the store! I talked with some people from Yankton this weekend that said it took them a half hour to drive from the Western Mall to the Empire Mall. They ended up just going home. UGH......NASTY!

Hit the funeral home this past weekend as it was their annual remembrance of the people that have passed away that they have held services for. It was a little smaller crowd than last year but still good. They have a slideshow of the people that have passed away in the past year and also you can write down the name of a loved one and as their name is read you go up and light a candle in remembrance. I of course was doing well and then we had to sing Silent Night. I could not do it, of course I could not sing it last year either. I had tears streaming down my face. Oh well. Tears are good and all part of healing. You could really tell the people who had just lost loved ones as they really struggled during the service and then I remembered how I felt as I was in the same boat last year. Holidays are hard and there is no getting around it but with each passing year the healing continues. Kind of sad that there were two of my classmates from Yankton there. One who's dad passed away a little over a year ago and another who's dad passed away a couple months ago. It was good to talk with them, give them my condolences and get caught up after the service.

After the service I went out to my Godparents farm for supper. Very good food and of course lots of laughter! They are such great people!

December 13, 2007

Baseball and Cycling...DRUG ISSUES!

It seems what we have known all along is true. American sports is riddled with people trying to cheat the system. Today the Mitchell report, documented in 409 pages, baseball players that have been linked in some way to people or other players that either sold them growth hormones or steroids. The documents even have canceled checks from individuals showing payment to these people. Some players names were taken out of an address books that were taken during raids from the suppliers homes but all have links back to the "bad people".

Come on people! Drugs give you an unfair advantage over people that have trained hard, usually all their life, or someone naturally gifted. But let's list the big one here.....DRUGS CAN KILL YOU! I know I would be VERY proud of breaking a record and then having an asterisk put by my name that says that I break the record while taking steroids. UGH. Real inspiration to all kids looking outside of one's family for a role model.

Cycling is on the right track even though some of their practices in the labs have some issues. Do people realize that professional bike racers are subjected to drug testing at anytime of day, any time of the year, any where, during racing season or not? They are. Maybe American sports powers that be should sit up and take notice as to what the cycling governing bodies are doing and even what some of the cycling teams are doing. Some of the teams are policing themselves to make sure that people are not doping. Some of the riders are also signing contracts for anti-doping with REAL STIFF fines (a years salary) and suspensions (usually a minimum of 2 years) if there is a breach of the contract.

Cycling, even though in recent years has had some real trouble, is moving forward and getting things in prospective and dealing with the issue and cleaning it up. Seems that in the past the sports that are the "American Pastime", people have turned a blind eye to.

It is time to clean ALL SPORTS UP and give our country something to be proud of!

December 12, 2007

Mr Armstrong

It seems Lance Armstrong is getting an interesting invite. The Israel consulate in NY has invited Mr Armstrong to help open a new cycle route. The planned route will run from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem to mark the Jewish states 60 years of independence next year. I sure hope he can drag himself away from the one Olsen twin to do this!...UGH!

December 11, 2007

Only in South Dakota or maybe a redneck state


I was in Yankton last weekend. We came out of the Hy-Vee grocery store and what is parked in the parking lot but a 4-wheel drive Ford Mustang. I had to take a picture of it as I had never seen anything like that before. I guess if I had lived in a more redneck southern state (sorry to all you rednecks out there) a person would have seen one but here in South Dakota? My guess is that someone had way tooooooo much time (and money) on their hands to perfect this unique machine. Not sure there is a market for them....well except for the more redneck southern states (again my apologies if you are a redneck)!

Note: This was the best picture I got of the Car / SUV/ Sedan Truck thing (whatever you want to call it) as other vehicles parked right next to it and were dwarfed by it!

December 10, 2007

Tour De France - Who is riding for what team?


It seems that a lot has happened to the cycling team dynamics over the off season. Here is a little something to get you a bit caught up but keep in mind this news changes daily it seems! Plus the opinions given here are mine and are OPINIONS ONLY!

Discovery or The Disco team
Disbanded. This was the end to an AWESOME team. I say TEAM because without the TEAM there would have been no Lance Armstrong winning a record seven tours or Alberto Contador winning one tour or even Levi making the podium. The tarnish to the team was signing Ivan Basso who later was linked to doping and is serving a suspension. Can't help but think that the whole doping debacle messed up finding another sponsor for the ol'boys in blue.

Astana
Was rocked with blood doping with Vino but he has now retired and and totally walked away from cycling. The Astana team is now a mix of mostly old Discovery riders including Levi and Alberto with leader Bruyneel. Astana also was not so kind to some of the riders from last years team. They had not been paid since August. They have been promised that they will fulfill their contract with the riders. If not then the team will have serious issues for 2008. Do you think it was the right move for some of the old Discovery riders? I am not sure. I think there will be huge issues with Levi and Alberto as Levi has been quoted as saying "I want to win the tour!" How is that going to work with Alberto (last years winner) on your team? This will be interesting to watch as it plays out.

T-Mobile
No longer a sponsor and so the old T-Mobile is now High Road. Georege Hincapi the former lieutenant for Lance will be riding for High Road this year. For George's sake I sure hope he wins the Paris Roubaix as this has been his goal since he started racing! Ulrich is fighting his doping charges yet and it sounds like a HUGE quagmire.

Robobank
Mixed up with the whole Rasmussen issue of "where was Micheal" during whatever month. Rasmussen had later said that the team knew where he was and that after all this blew up in the press during the tour he thought about killing himself. Not sure what that would have solved but a widow raising their kid alone. Micheal Boogert "Boogie Man" retired. We will miss his HUGE WHITE TEETH gleaming during this years tour.

Slipstream / Chipolte
The new kid on the block and one to watch. This is an American sponsored team run by an old 7-11 team member Vaughters that signed a lot of players at the end of last years tour. David Zabriski, David Millar, Chris Vande Velde, Julian Dean, Magnus Backstedts (former lead out guy for Thor Husvold) and others. This team will need an invite to ride in the TDF yet but with the players they have signed there should be NO QUESTION! They are also a team that does a lot of blood testing and have implemented their own testing to make sure their team is CLEAN.

These are just some of the teams out there making news but looking ahead to July, for all you non tour junkies that is when it starts, it should be a very interesting tour! Not sure who I will cheer for this year. Slipstream would be cool but OK I am going to sound like a girl here....not crazy about their uniforms! (picture at top of the entry)...I do have certain riders I like to see do well. Hincapie, Husvold (can't help it I am Norwegean), Levi, Zabriski or anyone that wins a break-away ROCKS!

Good weekend

Good weekend even though it did not go as planned. OH WELL. We drove to Bridge City Saturday in the snow for a remembrance at the local funeral home for people that had died in the past year that they have serviced and also for people in the past that they have helped. It ended up with the snow that they postponed the service until this coming weekend because of the snow...BUMMER! Well, all was not lost. My God parents, Rose, Kris and myself decided to go to Fry N Pan for supper. We had a good time talking and laughing like always. Never a dull moment when we get together that is for sure! Then it was back to the Clubhouse to stay for the night. Ends up we got around 3-4 inches and were to get 6+ inches.

I got up and scooped the driveway, sidewalk and two of the neighbors sidewalks and then we packed up except for the boy (Abe) and then hit Hy-Vee for breakfast then off to get Abe and headed out. I am always amazed at how may people drive WAY TO FAST on snow packed roads. There seemed to be a few of us hanging about the same speed but then there are others that BLAST by us. SHHHH...secretly I hope to see those people in the ditch up the road a ways but it never happened this trip. I know that is bad for me to think that but I think it would teach them a lesson. Saturday there was a bunch of them doing that and let me tell you it was white out conditions every time someone was in the passing lane. We made it home just fine but the Bravada is a mess with all the road grime.

We have been trying to loose weight in our house and boy it has not been that easy. Kris is doing AWESOME and I am slowly loosing a few pounds. We each bought a pedometer and have been charting out steps / cals /mileage. Well, at least I have. Kris is just keeping track of her steps. It has been fun to see how much a person walks in a day. Kris has been kicking my butt with that but I have a desk job and she has a physical job so there is the main reason. Anyway we both decided this morning that more exercise is needed. I guess the bike is going on the trainer and we will have to dust off the treadmill and not use it to hang wet clothes on to dry anymore. We will see. Maybe if I blog about the weight loss it might keep me motivated. We will see! I do know we have been eating a lot healthier the last three weeks and that is very positive. I have not been to the burger joints for lunch and if I do eat out it is Subway which I limit to once a week at the most.

I have to get on the bike again. When I was doing more biking I had dropped 15 pounds but I also had a goal of riding the Bike Mick. Maybe a goal needs to be set again? Something to ponder.........

December 7, 2007

Funny things mom used to say (Annabelle-isms).......

Mom always had some funny sayings and I am not sure if she would say it because she didn't hear it right the first time (she had a hearing issue) or she was saying it to get a rise out of us or what but we talked about a few of them the other night so I thought I would share them with all of you...God bless her soul....

Annabelle-isms:

  • Yogurt she called yoger.
  • Discover card was her Discovery card.
  • A retaining wall she called a reclining wall.
  • "Isn't that a sore eye?" instead of Isn't that an eyesore?
  • The famous mark stores we have Wal-mark, K-mark and the mart store was Hallmart!
  • The reader meeting was the meter reading.
  • When she watched Dynasty back in the 70 it was Dyna-see to her.
  • The best are names she could not pronounce....Chuck Knobloch who was with the Twins she just called him padlock..My roomies niece Maren and of course mom always called her Myron.
  • Another one we have said over and over in fun is the reference to Harry Potter which was "What is the big deal with this Harry Porter anyway?"

12/9/07 addition

  • The color mauve she called "You know that maude color!"

There are so many others that I can not think of at this time but will add to the list as I remember them so keep checking back to this entry! If you have any that you remember her saying send them on to me and I will be sure to add them!

December 4, 2007

Christmas Celebrations Have Started!

This past weekend we headed to the Clubhouse for some Christmas celebrating. It was a great time! First off we went to Charlie's for the best pizza and then home to listen to Christmas music and talk. Saturday was met with some what strange feelings. It was our real first snow this year. Don't get me wrong, I LOVE SNOW but we ended up with some freezing rain crud, I DO NOT LIKE, on top of the snow which made it strange. A couple of us went out to scoop the sidewalk and driveway and were scooping about 3 inches of nothing but slush! Oh well. We had a fire pretty much all of Saturday which made it toasty and I also decorated a bit to get us in the Christmas spirit.


Saturday evening was wonderful! We had put on a couple kettles of soup, made some bread and had some "family" over (who brought food also) for supper followed by a play at the local theater. A Christmas Carol was showing and what a fun time that was. The cast did a great job. It is the third production we have been to at the Lewis and Clark Playhouse this year and I think this was the best we had seen although Singing in the Rain was right up there also for different reasons. Kudos to the cast for play well done. We headed back to the Clubhouse and had angel food cake and coffee to celebrate Rose turning 74 November 19th! Lots of stories and laughter was had by all.


Sunday we hit the cemetery in Obert to decorate graves for Christmas. It was so icy there that I did end up falling on my butt, oh well plenty of cushion there so nothing was hurt only my feelings! Headed back to Sioux Falls and then out to Crooks to take my roomies mom home. We made a stop in Crooks at a place that has their house all decorated for Christmas and the lights blink to music. Very amazing. They donate all the money to Make A Wish Foundation which gives a person the warm fuzzies. Very cool and you can view it here although this doesn't do it justice at all. http://www.crookschristmas.com/ This place even received national press last year.


On the way back to town we saw a falling star. Now this is REALLY amazing when you think about it. We were coming back from the farm Thanksgiving night and saw a falling star. I had not seen one in a VERY long time. We decided that it was mom saying that she is doing fine and wishing us a Happy Thanksgiving. Then Sunday night we are heading back and saw another falling star. We could not believe it! We think it was mom signaling us again that she was happy we had spent the weekend with friends and family and had a great time with lots of laughter.
I guess you can read into it all you want but it is just odd that coming back from two different events involving family and friends that we had seen the falling stars...AMAZING.


I guess the bight light of one's soul shines on..............

November 28, 2007

BLACK FRIDAY!

Well, hope you had a great Thanksgiving holiday! Mine was great. Went out to the farm to my roomies mom's place. We had great food. You know the usual turkey, stuffing, sweet potatoes, cranberries, and the worlds best mashed potatoes!...haha..I only say that as it was my virgin run making mashed potatoes. They were pretty good of course so was the rest of the meal. Kris was in charge of carving up turkey or should I say giving it some sort of after death torture, poor old bird. Just kidding you did a great job Skip!

After the meal we sat around and chatted which is always fun. I of course had get in my few plays on words and jokes so it was a good day....then came black Friday!

I decided to do the black Friday thing since I have never in my life done this. For some odd reason I woke up at 4:30am Friday morning and was drawn to the ads on the counter in the kitchen. I went through the paces of making notes as the where I was going and what I was looking for and the times the stores opened. I thought I had a great game plan and would out smart the regular Black Friday Shoppers! I pull out of the driveway at 5:30am and start on my adventure. I hit the first store...Office Max. They had a Zune player there that was pretty cheap and so I thought it would be good to download pictures to. I was the 12th person in line. I am feeling GREAT. It is a bit cold but I am excited until this lady walks up and asked, "what time does this store open?" Of course I am ready to say 6:00am but the lady in front of me says "7:00am!" I had to double check my notes. Rookie mistake....I was to be at STAPLES not OFFICE MAX! So I get in the trusty Sidekick and head out to Staples. By this time it is 5:45am and the line at Staples is LONG! I have no idea what number I was in line but it was an amazing event to say the least. I am hanging there all bundled up when I hear people behind me talking about what they have encountered from previous years. This one lady said she was after a foosball table last year at Walmart. They get in the store and she makes a dash for the foosball table while her friend gets the cart to haul it out. I guess in all the frenzy there was only one table left so this lady sat on the table waiting for her friend to bring the cart! She even told one lady that she could have the table if she could get her off of it! I could not believe it! Ok, so we are still standing in line waiting for them to open the store. Then some people tried to cut in line and the WHOLE CROWD yelled at them! I WAS AMAZED! Then the ladies behind me plotted out their strategy. The one said "Ok, now you are going to the checkout counter while I go and get the item right?" Can you believe it? These chicks were seasoned professionally Black Friday Girls. Well, long story short, I was after the 4GB memory card and by the time I got in the store people were pushing and shoving and the cards were gone. No big deal. I decided to head back to Office Max before Staples emptied out. I hit the parking lot and look to be around the 70th in line. Not what I had hoped but it was ok. I ended up talking to some nice people in line. They were after the same thing I was which was not good. The had said they were at Toys R Us earlier that morning when it opened and it was a mess. I guess the police were called for some unruly man that took all the call tag slips for the Zune and walked out the door thinking he would come back and pay later. He would pay alright! The Office Max line was a bit different and I quickly learned new tactics. I found out that sometimes it is best to scope out the inventory through the windows to see exactly if you can spot what you are going to purchase there. I did this a few times. Then to my surprise they opened the doors. Everyone was so EXCITED then I heard them yell out something and people raising their arms in the air so our group did the same. I have no idea what it was for but we were jumping to get attention. It didn't happen. I figured out that they brought out some call tags and the people in the front of the line got pretty much what they wanted by the time they got back to us the Zunes were gone........DANG IT! The guy behind me said that Walmart had them also for about the same price so off I went...AGAIN...they were sold out. OH WELL. I have to say that it was an adventure. I have never seen anything like it before in my life. Glad there wasn't any REAL violence and I did get a DVD player for the basement at the Clubhouse for $30 so that was good...WOW! I have to have a better game plan for next year...LOOK OUT BLACK FRIDAY SHOPPERS, I AM CREATING A BATTLE PLAN FOR NEXT YEAR!

Hit the Parade of Lights...OOPS...AVERA Parade of Lights on Friday night. It was a great time as always!

FUN HOLIDAY.........

November 20, 2007

Done shopping yet?

I am pretty much DONE, yes, DONE shopping. Only a couple more presents to get and those will be easy ones. Of course there is the getting everything wrapped part which seems to wait until a couple weeks before Christmas...why?...I don't know. Maybe it is the fear of wrapping something and then finding out it has not been crossed off a list and that someone else purchased it and so it would need to be returned...could be...just not sure, but anyway it will get done in time for the unwrapping event and that is the important part. You know I spend a lot of time making sure that every present gets at least one piece of Abe's fur wrapped with it but people do not care, they just rip off the paper anyway. Of course there are always those people that take the paper off perfectly and fold the paper as if they will use it another year. Regifting the wrapping paper? I think not. I am a ripper, not a paper saver! There is another individual that I will not mention his name, but he lives in Pierre, that wraps each present with three pieces of tape, YES, THREE PIECES OF TAPE! I get even by taping his box shut with duct tape...hahaha...take that! It is always a fun time!

Yesterday was Rose's 74th birthday! She is out in the Carolina's with her family to celebrate Thanksgiving. Shout out to you Rose......HAPPY BIRTHDAY!

In a couple weeks we will head to the Clubhouse for a Christmas of sorts celebration! We have tickets to A Christmas Carol being presented by the Lewis and Clark Theater Company in Yankton. I think we have 8 people going to the play and of course we will consume food and beverages before the play. Should be a fun evening with family, friends and laughter!

For all you people not done shopping.....WHAT ARE YOU WAITING FOR?....GET IT DONE SO YOU CAN ENJOY THE HOLIDAYS WITH LESS STRESS!!

November 15, 2007

Other Clatter..........

Happy Thursday EVERYONE!
Not much going on today. Hitting the Crow for some grub and socializing over lunch time.
We are almost done Christmas shopping! YEAH! I think this is pretty darn early for us to almost be done. We have three gifts to finish yup and then of course there is the wrapping of the gifts. I would like to get this done ASAP so we can enjoy the Holiday season but we will see what all shakes out!

This weekend should be busy. Kris's sister and brother-in-law will be in town so we will hit breakfast someplace and then do some shopping with them and then they are off to a play. We will catch up with them later that evening. Should be a good time.

I suppose we should decorate for Christmas this year or at least put up the tree. We have not done this for a few years. So should just bite the bullet and get in the spirit! Speaking of spirit we had a great Pinot Noir the other night. Erath from Oregon. Very good and mellow with a little longer finish but very good. Maybe open a bottle of wine, spin some Christmas music and put the tree up....sounds like a plan.

In other clatter...Abe, our dog, will be 4 years old on December 4th! We can not believe it! Seems like yesterday this little guy that looked like someone put him in the dryer on the fluff cycle arrived in our lives. He is the best dog anyone could have!

November 9, 2007

WOW...It's November!

I can't believe it is NOVEMBER already! Where did this year go?

One of my friends dad passed away a few days ago. They were no that close and he was not really part of her life but still hard since you only have one dad. I am so proud of them going to a "party" for him next week in Florida. Shows how much you have grown as a person bud! LOVE YOU GUYS!

We went to my home church this past Sunday for the remembrance for the people that have passed away from that congregation in the past year. Very cool service. Good to get back to Church with great people! Saw a lot of people I have not seen in awhile which was really nice also then over to the Godparents for a wonderful meal! One of my "family" members had placed three roses on the church organ in honor of mom....they were so pretty! I am sure mom was very happy for us to be there together.

So the anniversary of mom's death lands on Thanksgiving Day this year. WOW, hard to believe it was a year ago already. Sometimes it seems like it was just yesterday, sometimes it feels like a long time ago and sometimes it is so surreal. I do miss her so very much. I have been thinking about how different our lives were last year at this time. Lots of road miles back and forth to visit mom, take her to appointments / treatments, and just to be with her. How did other things in my life get done last fall? I have no idea. I think a lot of us were on auto-pilot and just going through the motions. We were so drained mentally and physically. Thank GOD for great friends.

Looking back I am so very thankful for having a great, understanding, funny, giving, caring, wonderful mother. Not a lot of people are blessed with a parent like that! Laying in a hospital bed fighting her cancer and found it in her heart to SING to put a smile on our / my face! Not a lot of moms around like that anymore in this fast pace world! She was truly one in a million. I guess it is appropriate for the anniversary of her death to be on thanksgiving this year. I give thanks for having the best mom a person could have and that in the face of death she still found it in her heart to give and ease the pain of others around her. Love you mom!

October 8, 2007

PROST


Hit the Ice House this past weekend at Yankton. If you have never been there it is rated as one of America's best bars from Esquire Magazine. Now there are better bars out there but really what makes a "best" bar? Is it getting dressed up and heading out to the local bar with your friends and feeling up tight at the people looking at you or if you happen to spill a drink on the floor or what ever? Is it the latest in interior design elements that adorn the establishment to give it that feng shui? HELL NO! It is a place were you can come as you are and have a good time and not feel out of place and just kick back and have fun. That is what the Ice house is about. You get your bucket of beer and hang outside on the loading dock or the benches or inside and just have fun. The only thing we did forget was our koozie...of course all the regulars walked up with their koozies in hand. One Koozie I saw even was reinforced with duct tape..SWEET!! I guess we will know for the next time....bring you koozie and stay a while!
Another establishment we went to was Ben's Brewing Company. Ben put on an Oktoberfest and boy was it fun. He has been busy brewing beer White Whale Ale and Smutty Bear Nut Brown Ale. The Smutty Bear was to be like Newcastle and is not bad but Newcastle is a bit smoother but the White Whale was very good even though our table ended up getting the first few pints out of a new keg and so they were a bit cloudy but still tasted good. The highlight of the night was the polka band they had playing in the corner. Turns out I knew one of the members and so we had fun with him. He is a great sax player! Another friend decided that she was going to try and sing "In Heaven there is no Beer" to every polka song the band played! What a fun time. We headed back to the Clubhouse and celebrated with friends my Godparents 52 anniversary with DQ ice cream cake!
Semi-sad note..........by now everyone knows the Cubs were swept for their post season bid. I guess I look at it positively. They made the playoffs and there are a lot of teams that didn't make it that far. Sure I would have LOVED for them to go further but when the pitching and hitting don't go well you get eliminated in a hurry. I am a forever Cubs fan and even though they didn't make it past the first round of the playoffs you still have to love the CUBBIES!
PROST!

October 3, 2007

Last weekend........


First off...WAY TO GO CUBS!!! 2007 NL Central Division Champs! I only hope they can step it up a notch and play good ball. Seems at times they are good at pitching..THEN NOT...then good at offence..THEN NOT! I think the team has the potential to go all the way if things click right but then I assume all faithful fans of their own teams feel that way! We will see.......anyway.....GO CUBS!

We were in Deadwood last weekend for the Festival of the Book. It is a conference of sorts that bring together writers and inspiring writers to a common event to share ideas and resources. We listened to Ivan Doig and of course I am not much of a book reader so it was ok listening to him. His latest book they basically tore it apart as to the dynamics of the characters. Of course since I have not read the book and probably will not read the book I kind of zoned out during the talk. Kris's brother-in-law was a presenter at another session and that was GREAT! Way to go STUDDLY JAY! I had decided I wanted to listen to a couple from Rapid City that do adventure cycling and have written a few books about their adventures. I am so glad I went. You didn't really need to be a cyclist to listen to them. It was really about setting goals and reaching them. They were very fun to listen to and they do all sorts of talks for schools to inspire people to get out and see the world. (http://www.imagesoftheworld.com/) I had to buy a couple of their books and did talk one on one to them about their biking. Very nice and interesting people. To be that free at times would be GREAT!

It was also Kris's sisters birthday last weekend. It was not just another birthday but her 50th birthday! We had fun with that. Between Jay (her husband) and myself we told a lot of people about the event. There were fun moments of the special day from the crowd at the Bullock hotel bar, Bully's, singing happy birthday to her to buying Liz a slippery nipple shot at Saloon no 10. I guess there are two word that a lady, who had been sitting at the bar a bit to long, told us as we were leaving Bully's that sum up that evening..."PPPPARRRTY DOWWWN!" Great food and fun was had by all of us last weekend! We did see an Irish Wolfhound in the front yard of one of the houses by the Franklin Hotel...very sweet dog.....the picture above says it all!

Heading to the Clubhouse this weekend for Oktoberfest! Should be fun...my only fear is that during the first annual Ribfest in Yankton they ran out of ribs...I hope since this is the first Oktoberfest they do not run out of BEER! If they do we have plenty in Beergina to help get us through I am sure. It is also my godparents anniversary on the 5th. They have been married 52 years! CONGRATS LUTHER AND JOAN! We plan on raising our glasses a few times for them!

September 17, 2007

Quliters show and other things

I never thought I would be attending a quilters show and if you know me well at all you would have NEVER guessed that either, but I did! My roomy's sister is a GREAT quilter. She had entered 7 quilts in the state quilters guild show this past weekend and all but one quilt won ribbons! (sorry Jay!) GREAT JOB LIZ!

We did have fun just sitting around and talking, laughing, joking and having a few libations.

On the way home from Huron we stopped at a melon stand and purchased some squash and a water melon. Of course on the drive through Mitchell we stopped at Cabela's. I found a shirt to purchase but was looking for a winter coat and had no luck...oh well.

We got home and watched Butterfly Effect and Invincible. They were both good shows. Hit he sack early. We didn't sleep all that well in Huron. Felt like we were sleeping on concrete with our heads on a slice of bread. Slept good last night in my own bed although it was REALLY quite in the house without Abe there. He was still at the kennel. I picked him up today over lunch and found out he was naughty. He chewed up his dog bed! He has never done anything like that before! I guess he really wanted to go to the quilt show also!

Friday I had my return to the Dr for my ankle. Still is sore but have a different brace I have to wear for 3 more weeks. I have new exercises to do and then I have a return visit to him in 6 weeks if things are not going well by then I am guessing I will see a surgeon. So I am still in limbo with it for now.

September 11, 2007

Ribfest

Hit Bridge City (Yankton) this past weekend for the first annual Rockin Ribfest. We had a good time but no ribs were to be had. They ran out! I was a little bummed as I do enjoy a good rib gnawing but oh well the company was good and so was the beverages and also it was Kris's birthday. We had a couple toast to her 49th birthday which we didn't "rib" her about at all. We ended up at Ben's Brewing Company for talk, laughter and libations. After a few beverages it was back to the clubhouse for birthday cake. YUM-O. VERY GOOD STUFF!

I read that they think they had 4,000 people at the ribfest which is great. I also know that they have figured out were they had issues and will fix it for next year! I hope so the potential is SO THERE to liven up Yankton in the fall!

Oh, ya the Rockin part of the Ribfest was that they featured local bands. They were pretty good from what we could hear.

Mark your calendars for next year as an event to attend!!!

September 6, 2007

September 6th Ramblings

It has been a bit since I last blogged..SORRY! I have been busy at work and of course this darn ankle thing has not been that fun either. I have a REALLY BAD WHEEL is the best way to say it. I hobbled on the ankle for almost two weeks before I went in to see the doctor. Of course it is badly sprained and so he put me in a boot for three weeks. If we can not get it stable like he wants then it is reconstruction time or I guess that would be maybe a retread for a bad wheel. The very least will be a scope to clean it up and take care of a bone spur from a previous ankle break. Anyway not a fun thing. The boot is HOT, CLUMSY and of course my so called friends have come up with all sorts of names for me now.....Bootsey is the one that has stuck it seems. We did however dress up the boot a bit by applying CUBS stickers. One is the current logo and the other is a logo from 1908. They look pretty cool! (Thanks Kris)

Work has been wild the last couple of weeks. Lots of projects that need my estimating expertise (haha) so that has kept me busy.

Went to Yankton last weekend and did make it to and from to the pool without hurting another appendage which is always great. I took the boot off and did some walking in the pool. It felt good but the pool was a bit cool as it was all shaded but that was ok we were the only ones there and that was fun. Did a few things at the Clubhouse to organize more. On the way home we went to the cemetery where mom, dad and my grandparents are buried. Everything looked good there. I changed out the one vase with some fall type flowers. September 2 would have been my mom and dad's anniversary. I am sure they had a great time dancing up a storm since they are together now. I sure do miss mom. Kris and I talked about this as we left the cemetery. How it seems like only yesterday that she died but yet it seems so long ago. There are times that I just wait to see her walk around a corner at the house and say "Where have you girls been!" I know in my head and heart that this will not happen and I know in my heart that she is in a better place but still the pain of missing her is there and I suspect will be for some time.

This weekend we are heading back down to the Clubhouse. Yankton is having it's first Ribfest so that will be fun and also it is Kris's 49th birthday on Saturday so we are going to the community play Fools on Friday night and having a fun party weekend.

I guess I better get to picking my fantasy football team for the weekend. UGH! I need to do better this year as there are a few people out there who have a goal to beat me. I think I need to get serious about my picks!

August 13, 2007

The pool is finally open!

The pool at the "Clubhouse" is finally open! I know some of you are saying WTF why now since it is the middle of August! The pool was down all last year with issues and they were finally taken care of this summer. It took them some times to get the right people to do the job and let me say WOW! It is REALLY NICE. I think the last time I was at the pool with some friends was YEARS ago and it was not in the best of shape. Now it is AWESOME. They fixed the pipe, mudjacked the bottom, sandblasted I think I had heard five layers of paint off of it and then repainted it. We had a blast there this past weekend and now they have scheduled adult swim time from 9p-11p every night. So of course we had to try out the adult swim time also but I fell in a hole and messed up my ankle so that was a major bummer but we still had a great time.

So now with the ankle thing my golfing and biking will need to be delayed...DANG IT! Oh well, I will survive.

Heading to Riverboat Days this coming weekend so more pool time (I will watch for holes this time) and relaxation!

August 7, 2007

Emotions

I have not been on the bike yet....I golfed bad last Sunday......so things are going great so far!..hahaha

It was the PanCan golf tournament this past weekend. We (our team) ended up in 2nd place in the first flight so that was good but I golfed terrible. The last two times I have been out it has been bad. Not sure what is going on there.

It was great to see some old friends golfing but I also met some new ones. I got to spend some time with those WILD ladies from ladies night that are always done golfing before we are. What a hoot they are. That was fun and they can take a joke pretty well.

Peg is now a 6 year pancreatic cancer survivor! Amazing that she was only given two months to live by an area doctor. There was also a 10 year survivor there that brought people down from Minneapolis to golf. That is pretty cool to see. KEEP UP THE GREAT WORK PEGGY!

The down side of the tournament. I guess I had not even thought that this would bother me but it did. As we came up to each hole there would be a sponsor of the hole and sometimes a survivor's name or someones name that fought the fight and lost. Even though my mom did not have pancreatic cancer it still hit home. It was about this time last year that was kind of the beginning of the end of my mom's life. She had all of her bottom teeth pulled because there was a tumor growing in her jaw bone and down into her neck area. Then a couple days after she was home she broke her arm trying to get up from the recliner. Maybe subconsciously I had been thinking of this all along and it came to light after reading some of the names on the signs. I really do not know. I feel very selfish of the fact that my mom didn't survive her cancer and other cancer patients have but I also know that mom fought really hard and was ready to be well again with Gods help. I do not wish bad on anyone it is just me wishing mom was still here. I am glad for those families of survivors that they are able to share current things with them and it is not just a memory. I guess maybe some of this is that when you loose someone so close to you that you have emotions that hit when you least expect it. It sure did that day for me.

God Speed to those who continue to fight cancer and win!!

August 2, 2007

Cubs, Golf, Bridge, Biking.....

Happy August 2nd! The Cubs started the day tied for the lead in the NL Central!...YEAH! They are currently not playing so well so not sure if they will share first place by the end of the day.
Oh well..they have been playing really well. Their July record was 17-9 and overall they are 56-49 so doing very well.

Golfing just totally SUCKED last night. I lost I think four balls. We teed off on the last hole and then were told of the collapse of the Minneapolis I35W bridge and were just dumb founded than as we walked up to our ball for the second shot they blew the horn to get everyone off the course as there was a storm approaching. I never even added up my score it was so bad....I hope I got that out of my system for Sundays tournament. Sunday is the PanCan Tournament and is always VERY FUN.

Sad note-the collapse of the I-35 bridge in Minneapolis is very tragic. I have been over this bridge before as has a lot of people that live or have traveled to Minneapolis. My heart goes out to those whose loved ones are still missing. I hope that everyone that I know in the Minneapolis area are safe and not affected by this.


Good news-we are going to get a few people to ride the Margarita Ride in Vermillion. I had good intentions of riding the other night but chose to hit a few golf balls instead (like that helped). This riding issue will need to be rectified so that training can start for this ride SOON. I am planning on doing the 30 mile ride so not a lot of training needs to be done but just getting your butt used to sitting on the saddle for a few hours is the key.

July 31, 2007

CUBS

Forgot to say anything about my CUBS! They are doing really well even though they lost last night to the Phillies! They are only one game back from leading the NL Central after being at least 14 back at one time! I think they are 16-9 for the month of July! That is just AWESOME! For once I think they are doing things right. I hope with the trading deadline near they do not mess with the team much. Sometimes good chemistry is better than a BIG NAME player!

I am sure that my mom had something to do with getting them all fired up! She LOVED HER CUBS. I am sure that Lou has had quite the earful from her telling him right where they lost the games they did! To add to that I am sure my dad was enjoying a nice cold Old Style beer with Harry Carrey and both of them getting a chuckle out of my mom chewing Lou's ear!!!

GO CUBBIES!!!

Back into biking and help for my golf game!

Now that the Tour De France is over and my life gets back to allowing me to do things in the evenings I think I will hop back on the bike again. I think me and a few friends are going to do the Margarita Ride in Vermillion in September. I have heard great things about the ride and that it is fun also. How could it be a miss with margs and Mexican food at the end of the ride? Ya, that is what I thought also. The ride is 15, 30 or 50 miles long. I am opting for the 30 mile ride. This is a place to start. We will see how much training I can get in between now and then.
I wonder if there will be random drug testing for this event?.....hahaha....bring it on!

This weekend is the the PanCan golf tournament in Brandon. I am a three year participant and it is always a GREAT TIME and of course all proceeds go to a great cause. My golfing has not been that great but better than last year. I just have not golfed as much this year so given that I plan on hitting the driving range and also do some putting and chipping a couple times this week to help that part of my game. We will see!

I will report on my progress!

July 30, 2007

Tour is over.....good or bad

The Tour De France is finally over. I am just waiting for the next thing to happen in the world of cycling...who will be caught for doping next? My hope is no one will be that stupid to challenge the system.

Americans:
I believe that Floyd Landis did not dope and that it was the shoddy practice of the lab that is at fault. Why would anyone take a synthetic testosterone when the are going to give it their all to win a stage knowing full well that the stage winner ALWAYS gets tested? From what I have also read that taking the synthetic testosterone for one day would do nothing for the individual anyway. He had been tested during other stages of the 2006 tour and was negative. Where the French jealous of another American winning their beloved Tour?

I believe that Lance Armstrong never doped. He was the most tested athlete in the world and never tested positive ONCE. I also believe what he went through fighting cancer that he would never dope to risk his health.

I believe that Tyler Hamilton doped. There is no way that someone elses red blood cells can get into your blood system unless you have had a transfusion. He has been banned once for doping and then a few months ago he is in trouble again.

I believe that Greg Lemond has a lot of sour grapes toward the other Americans that have done well in the tour and loves to point fingers at everyone so he looks good. I don't care if he doped or not as he is just full of himself and puts other riders down that are MUCH better than he ever thought of being.

Other Countries:
Seems like Jan Ulrich is looking to be implicated as his Swiss bank account information will be release and shows large payments to questionable people that have been implicated to doping.

The Confidis rider that tested positive during one of the stages this year must have been guilty as he never even asked for the second test (sample B as they call it). This guy was in 50-something place so I guess the doping really helped him didn't it!?

Alexander Vinokuroff (sp?) I believe was doping. He is like the Tyler Hamilton story. Somewhere he had a blood transfusion of some sort. Although at least he did have a bit of a humor in a not so funny subject. They (interviewer) said it would be like taking a pint of blood from you father and transfusing it into yourself. Vino said, "No, because if it were my father, I would have tested positive for vodka!"

The Chicken (Micheal Rassmuson) who wore the yellow jersey for a good part of the tour being kicked out and dropped from his team for missed anti-drug testing. He missed one test in May and one in June (cyclist are tested year round at any given time and have to submit paperwork as to where they can be found at any time so they can be tested). These missed testings were all known before the tour started then all of a sudden he is out of the tour after being in Yellow for days? There is more to the story than what he had let on to his team and so I think he undermined the rules of the team by putting them on the line. He said he was in Mexico when he was really in Italy training part of the time. This I think diminished the trust he had with his team and thus they were forced to let him go. From things I have read he should not even been allowed to ride in the tour with his missed drug testings. They had ample time to make that judgement as if he should ride or not. They let him ride then I think the media got a hold of it and exploited it more thus putting pressure on the team sponsor to make a decision that should have been made before the tour....but then they were not given the real truth from the rider were they?

The real sad thing is that there are people on the teams (Yes, cycling is a team sport!!) that might not have doped but their team pulled out of the race because an implicated rider was on their team. We can not assume that guilt by association is true, sometimes, but not always. These few people have trained hard and sacrificed a lot for their passion to be taken out by one selfish act by another teammate.

This selfish act of doping hurts EVERYONE! You have teams looking for new sponsors for next year. Now potential sponsors will think twice about having their name associated with the mess that cycling is in. You have every clean rider out there defending themselves every time they have a great ride in a race...it all goes on and on and on. I do feel that I think the last couple of years this year included has done better at cracking down on the "BAD" people in cycling and are really trying to clean up the sport.

THE good part of the tour:
Discovery Channel cycle team had a great showing! Placing three riders in the top ten.
Taking the Yellow Jersey (Tour winner) The white Jersey (Best young rider) The Team title
and two stage wins! Not taking away from the Lance era but I think this was by far the best Discovery Team EVER! Goerge Hincappie has lead the Yellow Jersey eight times to a tour victory. That is amazing! Levi Liepheimer has been a great biker for a while but I think his team had not been so strong. He comes over to Discovery which is a Strong team and he gets third place in the GC (general classification)!

Kudos to Tom Boonen on winning the green jersey (points leader). He had an awesome race and of course he is very outspoken about doping and even stated that there should be a lifetime ban for Vino for his doping.

I was bummed that Thor Husvold only won one stage. From what I understand he had been battling a bug during the tour. He came to stage 20 and finishing 2nd and 5th in the points I believe.

All in all I will still watch cycling. I love the dynamics and I truly believe there are clean good cyclist out there!!

ROLL ON.............

July 11, 2007

The Tour Goes Scan-da-hovian



I got dressed this morning not really thinking about my attire. I pulled on my navy blue shorts and red polo shirt as it is golf night tonight. I then thought about how I would not be able to adorn my usual Footjoy hat as it is orange and would not be cool with the red and navy. So I dug out the old navy blue Epcot hat with the Norway flag and put my ball marker on the bill.


So I get to work and I'm watching the Tour De France flash updates on my computer. The usual break aways happen, then they are reeled in by the pelaton and then the sprinters get into position. Lots of battling that goes on when this happens. Today it was Norway's Thor Hushvold, the big Scandinavian sprinter, that won the stage. I was VERY HAPPY! Could it be that Thor won from eating all that lefsa and lutafish over the past year or was it because my choice of attire is the colors of the Norwegian flag and of course my Norway hat..........I guess we will never know!!


CONGRATS THOR!!!!

July 10, 2007

RESPECT

Today is a sad day. Our city is burying one of its sons. He was killed by small arms fire in Iraq. His funeral is this morning at the local arena.

Driving to work I noticed a lot of the flags flying high and not at half staff as the governor ordered. I took it upon myself to call seven local businesses around the arena to lower their flags in honor of Staff Sgt (Green Beret) Robb Rolfing. I did not know this young man or any of his family but out of respect and the ultimate sacrifice he and his family have given to this country, I felt it was my duty to call these businesses and tell them to lower their flag in his honor. It seemed like a lot of the businesses were surprised by my request to lower their flag and I even got transferred four times at one hotel chain (Sheraton) in order to leave a message on the managers voice mail! I guess no one could take this on themselves and do the RIGHT thing especially since they are right next door to the arena.

Have we become so numb that the death of a soldier is no big deal anymore? COME ON PEOPLE! Even though some of us do not agree with what is going on over in Iraq, we are still obligated to treat our soldiers with respect. They put their life on the line every second of every day so that we remain a free country. How many of you can say that? I know that fighting for our country is not for everyone, not even me, but we need to treat every soldier with RESPECT and lower a flag in their honor when they have paid the ultimate price for us.

Peace...........

June 26, 2007

Ramblings.............

I am tired of the HEAT and HUMIDITY! Not sure what it is out there today but it is nasty! We had to leave the A/C on all night last night and it was like walking into a sauna this morning outside. Abe is not a HUGE fan of the heat either he gets mopey...as do I it seems.

On a lighter note we closed on the "Clubhouse" last week. Me and five other friends went in on a townhouse (my mom's old place) together and now we have a vacation home an hour and fifteen minutes away. We are all very excited to make it our own and look forward to the time that all of us including our extended family there can celebrate our ownership!

Since retiring from softball, I have been talked into playing one tournament a year. It is the 35 and older state women's softball tournament in Pierre. We have won back to back titles and are hoping to "three peat in the Heat" this year but it is not looking so good. We are all getting older and having more aches and pains and other things going on that we are short players this year. Not sure we will be able to field a team but we will see. Two of the players are going to hit the games tonight hard to find more players so we will see. It is usually NASTY HOT the weekend of this tournament. Last year it was 104 and the year before 107 and windy. It was like playing softball in a blast furnace. NOT FUN! We did however come home with lots of BEER. Yes it was way to HOT to drink beer if you can believe that.

The Sioux Falls Parks Department FINALLY finished the bike trail around Sioux Falls. There was about a 2 mile stretch that was still dirt but now is black top and was opened yesterday. It will be a nice addition. The only problem is that they are raising the dike system around the diversion ditch in some areas so you still can not actually make the loop all the way around without detours. In the future they will be adding onto the trails and that is aways good.

June 8, 2007

Bicycle Lift in Trondheim, Norway

If they had one of these on EVERY mountain stage on the Tour De France, I might want to ride it!!!

It has been a while!...SORRY!

I guess it has been a bit since I last typed about my life. Not really all that much is happening just kind of going through the motions the last few weeks it seems. The weather has been crappy so no ladies night at BVGC the last two weeks so we decided to sit and drink last Wednesday night. Got to love the Rockets (2-pitcher container filled with beer with a tapper) at the Keg!!! Good time was had by all.

Last night a couple of our friends were having a garage sale so I tried to trade a 6 pack of bud light for a Harley but no go I guess. We also dropped off a bunch of books at another friends house for her to read...you will be busy for a bit there bud....that was enough books for the rest of my life to read although I am on a roll. I have finished one book and 7/8 ths done with my second one..wait for it, wait for it..THIS YEAR!!! Of course they are about the Tour De France and Lance Armstrong.

Heading to the clubhouse for the weekend. Should be fun. Going to a community play Saturday night. Will be fun to kick back, relax drink Old Style and watch the Cubs!!

Peace out............

May 31, 2007

May 9, 2007


April 25, 2007

Cubs Ramblings


AGAIN.....Mark Prior is out for the season after having exploratory shoulder surgery yesterday....AND....AGAIN...Kerry Wood is on the disabled list with tendinitis. When will the Cubs learn to cut their losses on these two guys? It is amazing to me that they are still Cubs as fast as we go through players at times. I guess the point can be made that the organization has invested a lot of money in these two and they are trying to get their money out of them.....to what point? I am so VERY tired of this....TRADE THEM AND MOVE ON!!!

Ron Santo the beloved Cubs 3rd baseman ---that should be in the Hall of Fame--has been missed from the last few games, has been in the hospital with an irregular heartbeat. Sounds like he is home now and is doing better and to rejoin the Cubs broadcast soon.
GET WELL MR SANTO!!!

April 23, 2007

Similar, but different!

This past weekend we went to my hometown of Yankton, SD. We had a great time. I was antique hunting. My mom left me some GREAT dishes that have been in the family. I thought the best way to display them was to maybe try and find an old china cabinet similar to my grandparents. Their cabinet was nothing fancy since they were just very simple folk. I have been on the hunt for this for awhile but have not been able to find what I was looking for. I then decided that the amount of dishes I do have would not have fit into the size cabinet that my grandparents had so I was looking for something similar, but different! I found what I was looking for and I should have it in 2-3 weeks. Not much to do to it as it was already refinished. I only have to replace the wood shelves so that is not a big deal....the bonus find was parts to a old wood desk. It is the two tower (vertical) drawer sections and the middle drawer so I will only need the desk top to complete the set. I can get a door from my work place to finish it off and have a new to ME computer desk!!! I CAN'T WAIT!

The other fun thing was that we spent some time with one of my mom's friends. We met at a bar and had a couple drinks with her. She is an awesome lady that I proudly call family!!! The bar we went to is a non-smoking beer and wine bar named Hugh Glass. Great little place with lots of variety of wine and beer. They even have the nectar of the God's on tap...Newcastle Brown Ale!!! Might have to hit that place this summer as they also have an outdoor patio.

It was a great weekend even though it ended with LOTS of rain!!!

April 19, 2007

April 18, 2007

Going to miss the snow?...Abe is!!


It seems that Abe is bonding with the last bit of snow in the front yard. I was raking the front yard and decided he needed to be out with me. He usually lays in the shade on the driveway but not this past sunday...he wanted to lay in the last snow of the year. He is such a goof but a GOOD BOY!!!!

April 17, 2007

Bad week and it is only Tuesday!!!

Well, this has been a nasty week so far!!!

I feel so bad for all the students / families / faculty at V-Tech. How can someone kill another person let alone 32 and hopefully no more will die? I mean come on. If you want to do the selfish act and kill yourself then go ahead and do it but leave everyone else out of it. What could this have possibly accomplished? Furthermore the media takes all of this and RUNS with it. Why do we need to know the shooters name? Isn't this just fueling the fire for others to try and make so called "history" to get their name in print and try to one up this nasty carnage?

I am in the construction industry and what this will do to our industry is make more money for the security and hardware companies. Don't get me wrong I am all for our company and others making money but this just seems so wrong somehow..........

I am also so very tired of the media trying to point fingers at V-Tech about how they should have locked the campus down. I think this adds fuel to the suing fire that Americans love to pounce on. No one could have predicted the massacre was going to happen based on what happened from the first two murders. V-Tech I am sure would not put it's students in harms way if they could help it......where is a crystal ball when you need one!!

Continuing on with the bad news this week.............
Rest in peace Morals!!! (friends cat)
Rest in peace Frank!! (family friend)
Get well Arla!! (friends mom)
Get well Molly!! (friends dog)
Thoughts and Prayers to Valoy (brother died)
Thoughts and prayers to Monica (mom entered hospice)

I HOPE THAT IS IT FOR THE WEEK!!! ONLY GOOD NEWS I HOPE!!!