Saturday, September 29, 2007


Queen Victoria.

One afternoon, I was spending time sorting through library cards and came across Title Card carded "Queen Vicky". Unusual spelling for that name, but I pulled the card and found the old edition on the shelves. The book was a 1964 hardback edition of Queen Victoria by Elizabeth Longford, a well-known biography that gives a full account of Victoria's life right up until her death in 1901. It had been reprinted and is currently on sale on eBay.

The Queen was a faithful journalist, keeping a daily journal of her life. The book is a bit difficult to read, but it is full of political plotting and intrigue. It has been awhile since I've read a biography, but I am actually captivated.

She had seven children, one named Victoria. The Queen's pet name "Vicky" was used by her family members. A great website:

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Ah! KANSAS! ah...choo! (drats)

Is this not Kansas? Is this not the rag weed capital of the world?

Being the peak of allergy season, it's tough fighting the weeds. Even tougher when you ride and you feel like you have sand in your eyes all the time. But then, when you get home, you look across the horizon and stare at the lovely, weed-filled pasture across the street.

But, then again, the joys of living in the country... sort of!

Can't hide in the house all the time! Enjoyable ride today, pretty skies and temperature at 80 degrees. Lots of bikes out and lots of fun. Until next time, God bless!

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Where's the Sun?

Goin' to the Sun Road, Glacier National Park.

A view from the back seat... Do you think it was a sunny day? NOT! Although the skies were gray, it was a beautiful ride both across the mountain and back!


Friday, September 14, 2007

IT"S A "Girl"!

Well, after a little research and evidenced today by the number of male, ruby-throated hummingbirds "darting" after the poor thing, the little bird is a female ruby-throated hummingbird.

I was standing on the deck talking to a friend and she buzzed by several times. I think I have identified where she has her nest... She alighted on the metal ivy-trellis and watched us, just a couple of feet away. She didn't seem frightened, but I think she was curious about what we were doing, standing there talking. Whitey, our long haired white cat, was eating breakfast at our feet.

Later, Whitey tried climbing the same trellis and getting at the feeder. One sharp word from me and she was back on the ground... That darn cat. She catches robins, but no way would she catch this little lady!

Until next time!

Thursday, September 13, 2007

All in a day's work...

When we returned home from vacation and now that I am into my first "retirement week", I noticed that we have had a small hummingbird hanging around our feeder. He is not the ruby-throated hummingbird, but he is cute and comes frequently everyday. In fact, he apparently is shunned by the ruby throated bloats because once in a while they dive-bomb him when he is feeding... if it is a he. Our neighbor has umpteen feeders and has multiple hummingbirds, but we have this one little faithful one, which I make sure that I now change the nectar once a week... Here is a little picture I took today. He is nervous, the second shot is a little bleary! Enjoy! vj

This later picture is where he saw me. He is a little skittish... I have to check out what "type" of hummingbird this little fellow (or girl) might be!
look at that evil eye he gave me! I closed the curtain so he could have some peace! vj

Sunday, September 9, 2007

A Cold Day in ___ Kansas!

It was cold today; it rained last night and it was cold today. I had enough cold already this year... on vacation, we rode in cold, wet weather and I got wet. I don't know much about wearing "leathers", but I got wet, then put my rain suit on and, of course, it holds the wet leather chaps (and jeans) right up next to your already freezing legs. I had on a gortex jacket, too. It got wet. I put rain gear over that too... The gortex jacket didn't dry it; it stayed wet.

We rode all day in the wet, 48 degree weather and I stayed wet the whole day... What a bummer. I learned. When we go on vacation next year, God willing, I will stop and take off the wet stuff and put on dry stuff, then put on my rain gear. Who would have thought... And I've been riding all these years. But of course, this was the first year I had a pair of leather chaps to wear.

Today, I cleaned and conditioned my leather chaps then put them away for another year. Also polished my riding boots and put them up. I do not ride in snow. Never again. No, never.

Tomorrow the sun will shine and at 9:00 A.M. I start my new job as a substitute librarian!

Saturday, September 8, 2007

Thoughtful fae.
I finally had a chance, after all these days (almost 3 weeks) after my retirement, to open the cards I received from the reception. People are very sweet and I will miss them; I am thankful my friends were with me to celebrate. I am truly blessed.

Friday, September 7, 2007

Rules of Kansas (sent to me by a friend, reposted because it's good.)

Rules of Kansas

1. Pull your droopy pants up. You look like an idiot. (Or somebody will pull them up for you!)

2. Let's get this straight; it's called a "gravel road." I drive a pickup truck because I want to. No matter how slow you drive, you're going to get dust on your Lexus. Drive it or get out of the way. (Be sure you know how to change a flat. Cell phones don't work in this county - Wabaunsee - so you can't call AAA.)

3. They are cattle. That's what they smell like to you. They smell like money to us. Get over it. Don't like it? I-70 goes east and west, & I-35 goes north and south. Pick one. (Don't hit one in Wabaunsee County, you are liable even if it was on the highway!)

4. So you have a $60,000 car. We're impressed. We have $250,000 combines that are driven only 3 weeks a year.

5. So every person in every pickup waves. It's called being friendly. Try to understand the concept.

6. If that cell phone rings while a bunch of ducks are coming in, we WILL shoot it out of your hand. You better hope you don't have it up to your ear at the time. (If it happens while we're hunting deer, the next ring you hear...)

7. Yeah, we eat catfish & crawfish. You really want sushi & caviar? It's available at the corner bait shop. (at 1/4 the cost)

8. The "Opener" refers to the first day of deer season. It's a religious holiday held the closest Saturday to the first of November. (And the Methodist Church in Eskridge, Kansas has a pancake feed -- all day!)

9. We open doors for women. That is applied to all women, regardless of age.

10. No, there's no "vegetarian special" on the menu. Order steak. Or you can order the Chef's Salad and pick off the 2 pounds of ham & turkey. (That is IF you can find someone who serves a salad!)

11. When we fill out a table, there are three main dishes: meats, vegetables, and breads. We use three spices: salt, pepper, and real Picante Sauce!! Oh, yeah....We don't care what you folks in Cincinnati call that stuff you eat...IT AIN'T REAL CHILI!! Chili was born and bred in Kansas...and real chili never met a tomato!

12. You bring "coke" into my house, it better be brown, wet, and served over ice. You bring "Mary Jane" into my house, she better be cute, know how to shoot, drive a truck, and have long hair. (And you better open the door for her...)

15. Colleges? Try Kansas State University, University of Kansas, Wichita State University, or Fort Hays State University or Pittsburg State University. They come outta there with an education plus a love for God and country, and they still wave at passing pickups when they come for the holidays. (Emporia State was not listed....)

16. We have lots of folks in the Army, (Go BIG RED 1) Navy, Air Force, and Marines, so "Don't Mess with Kansas". If you do, you will get whipped by the best.

Kansas is the greatest state ever!! If you are from Kansas, you are one bad hombre!!!

Please note that the comments in parenthesis are my own! vj

Tuesday, September 4, 2007

Home Sweet Home

Home is where the heart is! Finally, we are back! It seemed like forever, but the memories are great. This morning I need to go to the vet to pick up the outside kitty from her vet, as she was kenneled.

She arrived in September 2000, the day before we left on our first motorcycle trip with the Topeka OZ Harley Owners Group (HOG). She appeared on our back deck, scrawny and rough, beaten up by some other cat and starved. Of course my dear husband fed her, thinking (HA!) that she would be gone by the time we returned two weeks later... She became the neighborhood kitty, so to speak, and eventually bonded with my husband. Now, after all these years, I make sure she is cared for (at the vet's boarding kennel) while we are out of town and has her shots updated. She is pretty special and will come to my husband when he whistles! She also likes to visit our inside cats, but hates being in the house for any length of time!

Have a great and wonderful day! God bless!