Monday, March 08, 2021

Away I go again

All good things must come to an end, and that does include those fun-filled things we refer to as weekends. Now it is time to take our collective noses and stick them back onto that grindstone for another fun-filled week of doing what we do for a living. 

Here I go once again, getting ready to start another week out in the field with RTI. I'll be heading to the same location that I was at last week, and working the same segment. I was scheduled to go south, but that all got changed and the area was set to the residents only. Actually, we have someone who lives down there, so it's only right that they get to work their home segments. I may even have to make a stop off at Coleman's Fish Market on my way home. Michelle is wanting some good crab cakes so that may be my excuse for stopping when I come home. 

I tried to hook up with Gary last week, but to no avail as our schedules were a little bit off, I'll try to get in contact with him again this week when I am in the area. 

I'll be home later this week and Michelle will be here holding the fort down while I am away.

I hope everyone has a great day. 

Hi ho hi ho

Sunday, March 07, 2021

Sunday

Here I sit on a quiet Sunday Morning, Peanut and I are here conversing and she is educating me in the language of CATanese, I'm learning to speak it pretty fluently. I'm up watching Rocky Balboa on HBO and trying to collect my thoughts on the day. 

Well it appears like I will be heading to where I worked last week once again this coming week. I've already called my brother Gary and we're going to try to hook up while I'm up there, something that we were unable to do last week. Between me putting in long days and him having Dr's appointments, we were never really able to find time in our two schedules to get together. Hopefully this week will be different. 

I'll be spending the day planning my week out, booking my hotel and hopefully, I'll be able to get the same hotel deal as last week. It was close and well under the Government rate for the area which is what I needed. I could cross the river for half the price, but we're not approved to leave the state meaning I would be eating the cost of the hotel and that's not happening. I might even try to make a stop at Coleman's Fish Market for Crab Cakes for my wonderful wife when I return home. 

Other than that, it's a shopping and get ready for the week kind of day. 

Have a great one. 

Saturday, March 06, 2021

Saturday Morning Ramblings

Here I sit with the internationally acclaimed feline blogger Peanut and I sit putting our heads together to come up with some kind of literary masterpiece for you the readers. Look at that brain and how it's a churning original thought out of that feline mind. We're up watching Happy Gilmore and collecting our thoughts for the day. 

I was planning on traveling south to work today and most of next week however, that county's status changed to resident only, meaning only a resident can work it until the next report comes out next Friday. I will take my efforts and concentrate them to the exact same location I worked last week and do it again this upcoming week. So it is once again off to the land where my Aunt and Uncle lived until their passing and basically where my brother currently lives. I'll try to stay at the same hotel as it was a perfect location for me. It was close, on the main drag and there were many amenities (and I mean a Super WalMart) right next to me. 

So with nothing to do today as my plans have changed, what does this mean for me? Pretty much nothing, Michelle is a little bit under the weather again and may be suffering from Sciatica as she has been in a lot of pain ever since I got back into town Wednesday Night. She did clear off the treadmill yesterday, I can see it getting a workout in the very near future. Probably wouldn't hurt to get my oversized derriere in there as well. COVID has taken a toll on both of us and it's showing physically. 

The WVU Men's Basketball team is playing host to #17 Oklahoma State today at 2:00. If the Mountaineers win, this will be win #900 in Bob Huggin's illustrious coaching career. 

Have yourselves a great day, now Peanut and I will go back to telling Cat Jokes to entertain each other. 

How is cat food sold?  Usually, purr the can!

OK One last one. 

What state has a lot of cats and dogs? Petsylvania!

Friday, March 05, 2021

Big Ole Hairy Friday

Yes, it is once again that time of the week that we all look forward to when we can take time to cease the labors for the week and take a little bit of needed time out to enjoy the fruits of those labors. It is once again the dawn of another weekend and a Big Ole Hairy Friday.

A lot of things are changing down here in the valley, a place where I have lived on and off for about 23 years at three different locations. I worked down here in High School helping frame a couple of the apartments off in the distance, worked at the Valley Mart on a couple of different occasions and have spent a great part of my life down here. 

Patty ended up selling the Apartments first, then this house, the store, and her two houses a little over a year and a half or so. She left the valley about a year ago and is now happily residing in Florida as I watch what was a lifetime of building by her Dad come down in just a few short days. 

The picture you are seeing is from my backyard, the big area you see is where Patty's two beautiful houses with a nice in-ground pool in between them used to reside. The plans are to continue the UHaul business she started, as the office of now where the old Valley Mart was. They knocked down both houses, hauled everything away and now all that resides is a nice flat piece of ground. with endless possibilities. 

This is what is left of all that Wayne, Pat, Patty, Mickey and Michael had built down here. Lot's of changes in the Valley.

Have yourselves a great day, I know my view has been altered. 


Thursday, March 04, 2021

Photo Flashback Thursday



Once a week I like to take a little bit of time out, time to look at some of the 30,000+ photos that I have stored on my computer. Little lost moments in time that I either captured with a lens, scanned, or just stole from someplace on the internet. I like to find just one and post it up and recall or relive the picture to the best of my ability. Sometimes this is a pretty easy task and sometimes it's not that easy, one thing it has always been is a whole lot of fun.

This weeks pic is from the Johnny Koon Lantern Launch and Butterfly Release from a couple of years ago. Everyone was buying their tickets and Kim had a stamp to mark all her tickets. What did we win, same as I do every other year, nothing? Actually, I think we did win something for little girls and we just turned around and handed it to Kynlea. Amy and Ralph have a magical way of winning all the prizes somehow. Yes they buy a lot of tickets. but so do we and they are always lucky at the drawing. 

No complaints though, we're there to raise money for a good cause and make a few memories on the day. 

Have yourselves a great day. 

Tuesday, March 02, 2021

Tuesday's Tidbits

* Monday is once again behind us, I'm away from home working and Michelle is at home holding down the fort. 

* It has been 20,913 days since I was born, that is 21 years using my new and improved 991 day Calender. I prefer my calendar.

* It has been 6,134 days since I graduated from WVU with a Degree in Geography. It's still my passion and I enjoy it. 

* 4,731 days ago Michelle and I had our first date together, Pizza Hut and 10,000 BC movie that was horrible. 

* 3,960 days ago I proposed to Michelle, 4:00 in the morning but she was expecting it. 

* It was 3,482 days ago in front of our closest friends and family, Michelle and I became husband and wife at the Marilla Center, married by a chiropractor. 

* I have now lived 1,122 days longer than my Dad did and I'm still going strong.

* I have 3,984 days to go until I retire, give or take a few hundred days here or there.

* The next Backyard Brawl where we beat Pitt's ass in Football is only 550 days away. I think I started this countdown with about 2,500 days. 

* 337 more days until Phil steps to center stage again for Groundhogs Day, he's held up his prediction so far this year, it's probably snowing right now still. 

* 304 more days to go until my Goodbye 2021 Blog is posted, I'm hoping for a big year this year. 

* There are 297 more shopping days left until Christmas 2021. You still have plenty of time. 

* The next Anniversary of my 21st Birthday will be in 274 more days. 

* There are 156 days until Michelle and I head to Pittsburgh to see Reba in concert. It was postponed this March to July and now they are pushing the tour until next year. It'll be my and Michelle's 10th wedding anniversary.

* There are 156 more days to go until Michelle and I celebrate our Tenth  Wedding Anniversary together. =)

* There are only 21 days until the start of Spring 2021!!!!! My favorite season of the year!!!

* I have written 6,326 blogs in the now 16 1/2+ years since I started blogging. 

* No Drone flights this weekend, hopefully, I can get a few flights in this spring. 

* Michelle had an interview yesterday, hopefully, it went well. Don't know as of press time. 

*  We tried a place over the weekend, BC Jerk. It was really good and we'll be revisiting it in the future. 

* Hayley and Tyler have made plans for their Honeymoon, they are going to go to San Diego for 11 days. They will absolutely love it, I would move there in a heartbeat if I could afford it..lol

* The Movie Coming to America 2 is going to be available on Amazon Prime starting Friday. Kind of excited the see it. 

* Not sure if I have ever mentioned it before on my blog, but I Hate Snow. I'm so glad that it is melting

* Corona Virus, you can still track it as it is now starting to pick up steam and the numbers are increasing. 

* We're now Gold for COVID for Monongalia County, although most of the rest of the state is red you can track the state stats HERE

* I'm STILL converting some old VHS tapes to Digital Format for Trish. I really need to get back on this as I am such a procrastinator.

* Have yourselves a great day.  

* Hi ho hi ho

Monday, March 01, 2021

Happy Birthday Luke and Happy Monday

I would like to take this opportunity to make this a dual purpose blog, first and foremost I would like to with our Grandson Luke a Very Happy Birthday today. Korey, Hayley and Tyler had his birthday party yesterday at Korey's house and Michelle and I went up and enjoyed the afternoon with everyone. Luke officially turns 7 years old today, Happy Birthday Luke.

For me, I'm out on the road and traveling to a city when my Aunt Juanita and Uncle Chuck lived their lives for the next few days. I'll be up there working there for RTI today, tomorrow and Wednesday before returning Wednesday evening to my lovely wife. Been to this city many times as a kid and a few times as an Adult, and only stayed overnight there once previously when my Juanita passed away. 

I've talked to my brother Gary a few times in the last couple of days, we are going to try to hook up while I'm up in his neck of the woods. He actually lives in Wheeling and works in Weirton, so he has a little bit of a drive to go to work. Hopefully we can grab a two brothers picture while I'm up there.

I hope everyone has a great day.

Hi ho hi ho

Sunday, February 28, 2021

Sunday

Here Peanut and I sit once again in a quiet household, we're having a detailed discussion on whether Morgan Freeman or James Earl Jones is the better voice. I'm up watching some compelling documentary on HBO, or maybe it's a movie for all I know, shows you exactly how much I'm not really paying attention to it and am having an in depth conversation in the early morning hours with my cat. 

Big day for us today, we'll be heading out grocery shopping this morning and then heading out for the day to Canonsburg and Luke's Birthday Party. His birthday is actually tomorrow when he turns 7, but Hayley, Tyler and Korey are having his birthday party this afternoon. Last year pre covid they had his party at a nerf gun battlefield place that they rented out for him and a bunch of his friends to play, and they had an absolute blast last year. This year there will only be a small handful of family gathering to celebrate his 7th birthday with him. 


I have to prepare to travel tomorrow, I'll be out of town in the northern panhandle working on Monday-Wednesday. I did talk to Gary a little yesterday and told him I would be in town, I offered to take him out to DiCarlo's Pizza for dinner one evening. I know Michelle wants me to bring one home Wednesday Night when I come back. 

Have yourselves a great day. 

Saturday, February 27, 2021

Saturday Morning Ramblings

Here I sit once again in a quiet household, Peanut I think is still in bed with Michelle and I'm out here flying solo for this one. I'm watching Weird Science on HOB as I clear the sleep from my eyes and awaken for the day. 

Michelle and I had a pretty good time in Baltimore. We went down for an interview that I had yesterday, I felt pretty good about how the interview went, but we'll have to wait and see how it all turns out. It was a 2 hour interview, the first hour I met with three people and the second hour was a test on how well I understood the routing, I think I did pretty well as I approached it analytically. It was all done with paper and a pencil to see how our thought process worked. Michelle went down with me just to get away and I think she had a grand old time. We liked the part of South Baltimore that we were in, we were close to Annapolis Maryland and not too far from the Bay. 

Today I've got a few errands to run since we were gone the last couple of days. I think Michelle and I are going to take a trip to JC Penney's, I need some new jeans and she had an interview on Monday and wants to get some new clothes for that. 

We also have some making up to do with Peanut, Kiwi and Sophie for leaving them all alone for a little over a day. They were fed and taken care of, they just wanted a little human interaction. 

Have yourselves a great day. 


Friday, February 26, 2021

Big Ole Hairy Friday from Baltimore

Yes, it is once again that time of the week that we all look forward to when we can take time to cease the labors for the week and take a little bit of needed time out to enjoy the fruits of those labors. It is once again the dawn of another weekend and a Big Ole Hairy Friday. 

Michelle and I are not downtown, we are on the outskirts of even where I am interviewing later this morning, we're actually staying in a town called Gambrills, Maryland. We stayed last night to somewhat attempt to familiarize ourselves with the area. I did bring my lovely wife down as well, since this would be a decision that affected both of us if it were to come to fruition. 

As of press time we are planning on returning to Morgantown this afternoon after the interview, provided we don't have to stay and start looking for places which we may do anyways. 

I hope everyone has a great day, wish my to knock it out of the park on this interview.

Thursday, February 25, 2021

Photo Flashback Thursday



Once a week I like to take a little bit of time out, time to look at some of the 30,000+ photos that I have stored on my computer. Little lost moments in time that I either captured with a lens, scanned, or just stole from someplace on the internet. I like to find just one and post it up and recall or relive the picture to the best of my ability. Sometimes this is a pretty easy task and sometimes it's not that easy, one thing it has always been is a whole lot of fun.

This weeks pic kind of has a double meaning, one for the obvious photo flashback from when Michelle and I went to Baltimore a day before our cruise to run around downtown. I grabbed this pic that I believe was closer to the Inner Harbor than it was Camden Yards. Michelle was proudly wearing her Pirates shirt and telling the people of Baltimore what we thought of their baseball team. 

The second meaning, Michelle and I are off to Baltimore today. I have an interview tomorrow in Millersville Md, just south of Baltimore at 10:00 AM. This would be for an on-site position that I actually had to submit a copy of my college transcripts to as part of the application process. It's a very good paying job and I think I have my pay range that I'm targeting and it seems within their range. It's a little more expensive to live there, so I have taken that into consideration of my assessment. 

Have yourselves a great day. 

Tuesday, February 23, 2021

Tuesday's Tidbits

* Monday is once again behind us, I'm not traveling for RTI this week but will be next week, good time for a Tidbits. 

* It has been 20,906 days since I was born, that is 21 years using my new and improved 991 day Calender. I prefer my calendar.

* It has been 6,127 days since I graduated from WVU with a Degree in Geography. It's still my passion and I enjoy it. 

* 4,724 days ago Michelle and I had our first date together, Pizza Hut and 10,000 BC movie that was horrible. 

* 3,953 days ago I proposed to Michelle, 4:00 in the morning but she was expecting it. 

* It was 3,475 days ago in front of our closest friends and family, Michelle and I became husband and wife at the Marilla Center, married by a chiropractor. 

* I have now lived 1,115 days longer than my Dad did and I'm still going strong.

* I have 3,991 days to go until I retire, give or take a few hundred days here or there.

* The next Backyard Brawl where we beat Pitt's ass in Football is only 557 days away. I think I started this countdown with about 2,500 days. 

* 344 more days until Phil steps to center stage again for Groundhogs Day, he's held up his prediction so far this year, it's probably snowing right now still. 

* 311 more days to go until my Goodbye 2021 Blog is posted, I'm hoping for a big year this year. 

* There are 304 more shopping days left until Christmas 2021. 

* The next Anniversary of my 21st Birthday will be in 281 more days. 

* There are 163 days until Michelle and I head to Pittsburgh to see Reba in concert. It was postponed this March to July and now they are pushing the tour until next year. It'll be my and Michelle's 10th wedding anniversary.

* There are 163 more days to go until Michelle and I celebrate our Tenth  Wedding Anniversary together. =)

* There are only 28 days until the start of Spring 2021!!!!! My favorite season of the year!!!

* I have written 6,319 blogs in the now 16 1/2+ years since I started blogging. 

* No Drone flights this weekend, hopefully, I can get a few flights in this spring. 

* Back to working for RTI, but it'll be next week before I get back out into the field. Could have went this week but I have a couple events coming up this week both include me traveling. 

*  Michelle has been feeling much better, not sure if she had COVID but we isolated her for 10 days and I think all is well. Better safe than sorry. 

* I'll be taking a trip to Baltimore later this week, keep your fingers crossed. 

* Michelle and I will be traveling to Canonsburg on Sunday for Luke's Birthday Party.   

* Not sure if I have ever mentioned it before on my blog, but I Hate Snow. Don't even like it a little bit.  

* Corona Virus, you can still track it as it is now starting to pick up steam and the numbers are increasing. 

* We're now Gold for COVID for Monongalia County, although most of the rest of the state is red you can track the state stats HERE

* I'm STILL converting some old VHS tapes to Digital Format for Trish. I really need to get back on this as I am such a procrastinator.

* Have yourselves a great day.  

Monday, February 22, 2021

Monday

 All good things must come to an end, and that includes the fun-filled things everyone refers to as the weekend. Now it is time to take them noses and stick them back onto the grindstone for another fun-filled week of doing what it is we do for a living and possibly changing the world to make it a better place.

I had a little of an online conversation with someone yesterday, he was telling me that his own nephew is in middle school and does not know how to tell time on a normal face, non-digital clock. Blaming teachers and the school system, was a skillset my Grandparents had taught me before I even entered kindergarten, much less grade school or Middle School. It got me thinking how could anyone allow this to happen, so I can't say I would either. 

With that being said, there are numerous online classes that you can take, many are even free to take. Coursera is a really good website to help us develop or learn new skill sets, a lot of the courses are free and many even offer course certificates that can be linked to a Linkedin profile. If for no other reason than just to learn a new skillset, do yourself and your kids a favor and look at the Coursera site. You'll thank me someday. 

Well Michelle got to see one of her baby Giraffes that she watches be born yesterday. Autumn at Greenville South Carolina was one that gave birth yesterday. This is not the main one she watches, that is Johari who is due to pop about anytime as well. So our day was watching Giraffe Hoo Haas...lol

Have yourselves a great day.  

Sunday, February 21, 2021

Sunday

Once again here Peanut and I sit in a quiet household, we're here discussing thermonuclear fusion and who was better Buggs Bunny or Daffy Duck. No there is no limit to our man to feline early morning discussions. We're up watching something on another on HBO and collecting our thoughts for the day.

Michelle seemed to have a decent day yesterday, she and Chris went up to East Liverpool Friday evening and returned last night. They had to get some things in order with her Dad's estate and they stopped in to visit her Grandmother GiGi at the nursing home. 

Today's plans are simple, go and do our weekly grocery shopping and come home and perform the weekly chores that we do every week. Change the kitter litter genie bag, change Kiwi's bedding, take all the trash out and put the new groceries away as well as sort our meds for the upcoming week. Basically, we're going to relax. 

I thought I was going to have to travel for RTI tomorrow, but it's not looking that way since no one had contacted me. They run a report every Friday to see what areas are eligible to be worked, and I have heard nothing back since Friday's report was run. The bad weather may have had something to do with that as one of the areas is basically an area that got the most snow recently. 

Have yourselves a great day and a great Sunday. 

Saturday, February 20, 2021

Saturday Morning Ramblings

Here Peanut and I sit alone on a very quiet Saturday morning, we're both up partying like old-aged rock stars getting ready to get our day on, but only after a few hours of sleep. We're up watching the movie swingers on HBO and putting our collective heads together to bring you our thoughts on the day. 

Michelle and her sister Chris left yesterday to go to East Liverpool-Calcutta Ohio to take care of a few things with her Dad's estate. Danni will be joining them today for a sister's day so to speak. They are all actually getting together to take of their Dad's estate and attempt to stop in and see their Mom before they head home later today. 

Me, Peanut, Kiwi and Sophie have been partying it up all night, Kiwi providing all the music, Peanut did all the night's Comedy and Sophie did her normal geriatric stuff of telling us younguns to quiet down. Peanut did tell a few good ones like What is a cat's favorite movie? The Sound of Mewsic! What's a cat's favorite game to play with a mouse? Catch! She was killing it all night long on the microphone to say the least. 

My plans for the day are not too much the same as they are every day as of late, not too much of anything. I don't know about anyone else. but I'm starting to get tired of being bored. At least when I was contact tracing I was occupied. I guess I shouldn't complain and use the downtime to relax a little more. 

I hope everyone has a great day but Peanut wants to tell one more joke on a partying shot before we close this blog out. 

What's a cat's favorite dessert? Chocolate mouse!

Friday, February 19, 2021

Big Ole Hairy Friday

Yes, it is once again that time of the week that we all look forward to when we can take time to cease the labors for the week and take a little bit of needed time out to enjoy the fruits of those labors. It is once again the dawn of another weekend and a Big Ole Hairy Friday.

Well, I was supposed to be in Eastern Maryland yesterday for an interview, but that has been put off until next week at this time. Inclimate weather was the reason for the postponement. Not banking too heavily on this one, but we'll have to wait and see. It will be my first in-person interview since the whole covid thing started. 

So what are my plans for now that my certification is all done. Well possibly go out and work for RTI some next week, only problem is that none of the segments are anywhere close to Morgantown meaning I may have to travel and stay overnight to work if the area is still open. They run an analysis every Friday to see where COVID numbers are low enough to do in-person visits. My only opportunities right now are in the two panhandles. 

I did our Sam's shopping yesterday and will run out and dry laundry later this morning, and that's probably going to be my highlight for the day and that's about it for me. 

Have yourselves a great day. 

Thursday, February 18, 2021

Photo Flashback Thursday



Once a week I like to take a little bit of time out, time to look at some of the 30,000+ photos that I have stored on my computer. Little lost moments in time that I either captured with a lens, scanned, or just stole from someplace on the internet. I like to find just one and post it up and recall or relive the picture to the best of my ability. Sometimes this is a pretty easy task and sometimes it's not that easy, one thing it has always been is a whole lot of fun.

This weeks pic goes back to a time when my Dad was between hospital stays when we had him in ICU for a few weeks and didn't know what his future held him going back in and eventually succumbing in the ICU. 

In between those two Hospital stays, we got a reprieve with the man, a chance to get everyone together one more time for one of his cookouts, although I seem to recall my brother-in-law George doing all the cooking. Dad had just purchased his RV and was the only trip that he had ever driven it. Albeit it was from East Gate to Krepps Park, but he did get to use it this one time before he passed. 

I do have to say this is almost a little tough of a picture to look at. Jean had just had her debilitating stroke and had pretty much went blind and Dad was swollen and just wasn't the guy we had known. I guess looking back we did have the opportunity to have that one last picnic that he always loved to have before we said our final farewells. 

Have yourselves a great day. 

Tuesday, February 16, 2021

Tuesday's Tidbits

* President's Day is now behind us, time to get back at it on a wonderful Tuesday. Kiwi and Peanut are both telling me it would be a great time to do a tidbits. 

* It has been 20,899 days since I was born, that is 21 years using my new and improved 991 day Calender. I prefer my calendar.

* It has been 6,120 days since I graduated from WVU with a Degree in Geography. Seems like only yesterday, but wow has campus changed since I was there. 

* 4,717 days ago Michelle and I had our first date together, Pizza Hut and 10,000 BCD movie. 

* 3,946 days ago I proposed to Michelle, 4:00 in the morning but she was expecting it. 

* It was 3,468 days ago in front of our closest friends and family, Michelle and I became husband and wife at the Marilla Center, married by a chiropractor. 

* I have now lived 1,108 days longer than my Dad did and I'm still going strong.

* I have 3,998 days to go until I retire, give or take a few hundred days here or there.

* The next Backyard Brawl where we beat Pitt's ass in Football is only 564 days away. I think I started this countdown with about 2,500 days. 

* 351 more days until Phil steps to center stage again for Groundhogs Day, he's held up his prediction so far this year, it's probably snowing right now still. 

* 318 more days to go until my Goodbye 2021 Blog is posted, I'm hoping for a big year this year. 

* There are 311 more shopping days left until Christmas 2021. 

* The next Anniversary of my 21st Birthday will be in 288 more days. 

* There are 170 days until Michelle and I head to Pittsburgh to see Reba in concert. It was postponed this March to July and now they are pushing the tour until next year. It'll be my and Michelle's 10th wedding anniversary.

* There are 170 more days to go until Michelle and I celebrate our Tenth  Wedding Anniversary together. =)

* There are only 35 days until the start of Spring 2021!!!!! My favorite season of the year. Wait, that's six more weeks of Winter....what the heck. 

* I have written 6,312 blogs in the now 16 1/2+ years since I started blogging. 

* No Drone flights this weekend, hopefully, I can get a few flights in this spring. 

* Back to working for RTI, I do my yearly training and certification today all from the comforts of home.

*  Pearl needed a new battery this past weekend, the one I bought had a three-year warranty and it's been a month shy of four years, so I had to buy a new one. 

* I might be doing some fieldwork for RTI in the very near future, but it may involve overnight stays. 

* Not sure if I have ever mentioned it before on my blog, but I Hate Snow. Don't even like it a little bit.  

* Corona Virus, you can still track it as it is now starting to pick up steam and the numbers are increasing. 

* We're now Gold for COVID for Monongalia County, although most of the rest of the state is red you can track the state stats HERE

* I'm STILL converting some old VHS tapes to Digital Format for Trish. I really need to get back on this as I am such a procrastinator.

* Have yourselves a great day.  

Monday, February 15, 2021

Presidents Day

The traditional weekend is now once again over with, if you are lucky enough to work for some kind of Government, today is President's Day a Federal Holiday which means you get to extend your weekend one more day. 

What else doe it being Presidents Day mean? Banks are probably going to be closed as will Post Offices and any Federal Offices. They are the lucky ones that get to have this day as a Holiday and get paid to stay home. 

I begin my RTI certification tomorrow, this is the yearly thing that I used to go to either St Louis or Raleigh NC for to do fieldwork for the NSDUH study. I have all my supplies and everything, just need to take time sorting them and go through this training and recertification. 

Have yourselves a great day. 

Sunday, February 14, 2021

Sunday

Here Peanut and I sit yet once again in a quiet household, I think we have come to terms on her contract and she likes to be around me now when I'm writing with renewed faith. I'm up watching something on HBO that I'm not really paying attention to. Michelle is fast asleep in her recliner and I'm getting ready to lay back down after I share my thoughts with everyone. 

First and foremost, today is Valentine's Day and I would like to wish a very happy Valentine's Day to my lovely wife, who is still a little bit under the weather. She has not been feeling good the past few days and has been resting. Nothing changes the simple fact that she is still the love of my life and I'm lucky to have her as my Sequestered Valentine. 

I'll be running out today and doing the week's shopping since she is a little under the weather. I might even get out a little earlier than normal today since I'm usually up before her. I'll get an early start hopefully and we can spend the rest of the day together. 

With football season completely over with, now I'm going to have to find something else to do with my Sunday's. 

I will start to recertify to work for RTI this week, I'm scheduled to be in my session Tuesday afternoon. This will replace my trip to St Louis as the entire project has changed due to COVID. I'll learn about all of those changes on Tuesday. 

Have yourselves a great day. 

Saturday, February 13, 2021

Saturday Morning Ramblings

Flatts Elementary 
Here Peanut and I sit in on an early Saturday morning, I'm not sure if she has ended her labor strike just yet, but she's out here. I'm up a little early watching Xmen first class and ready to head back to bed. 

I happened to come across this picture yesterday on a Facebook group. Now the time period is just before I started attending, but this is my grade school (Flatts Elementary) while we were doing our Halloween Parade, something we did every year. We would get in our costumes and parade around the playground like we were special, which we were. 

I started first grade there in the fall of 1970 before I went to 5th and 6th Grade at Chestnut Ridge (all the same school with same Principal, Cafeteria, etc) which still stands today as a bed and breakfast. Someone estimated this picture was from around 1969 or so, so it predates me and I can say that is probably accurate. I see the old basketball court in the background where we used to play kickball, you kicked the ball directly over the other backboard and it was an automatic (our word for Home Run). 

I think the trailer where Dad and Jean used to live at the time of when Gary was born was on the right hand side of the picture, the red and white trailer. It was somewhat in the right location, but their trailer may have been a few trailers down. The edge of the basketball court was pretty much the edge of the property is and that may be more behind where Duncan Donuts (Hardees) was built as opposed to the Burger Chef (Wings Ole) where they did live behind. I would need a broader picture to either confirm or deny it, right color but maybe not the exact same lot. 

So that brings us to day, no plans for the day. Michelle has been feeling a little under the weather the past couple of days, so we are going to take it easy. It could very well be a day filled with movies, naps and playing around on the internet. 

Have yourselves a great day. 

Friday, February 12, 2021

Big Ole Hairy Friday

Yes, it is once again that time of the week that we all look forward to when we can take time to cease the labors for the week and take a little bit of needed time out to enjoy the fruits of those labors. It is once again the dawn of another weekend and a Big Ole Hairy Friday.

We got a little bit of bad news yesterday, the older of our once long time neighbor dogs has crossed the rainbow bridge to the other side. Lilly, the big sister of Rocky has left this world for the next. Ashley sent Michelle a text message yesterday informing us of the bad news. Lilly and Rocky's daily routine used to be to run around the house to our door, before they even went and relieved themselves, to get the treats we used to give them on a daily basis. Seeing the two of them run on in used to just warm my heart. We've missed them since they moved south, but their memories will live forever. Lilly even made it to one of the old Krepps Park Picnics Jean and Mick used to throw for a few springs in a row as seen in the pic. 

We did get lucky and scored a 5 pack of Clorox wipes from Sam's Club yesterday. You can find them on places like Amazon, but at 300-400% markup of their normal retail price. We had some Lysol wipes and I have a refillable bottle of spray Clorox that actually contains bleach, but we have not been able to buy Clorox wipes like this since before the pandemic. Looks like they had a few skids of it and I grabbed one of the few remaining packs and it was 1 pack per customer limit. 

Well there was some good news yesterday and I know a few people have been asking and wondering about it. The WVU Men's Football team has released their 2021 schedule for this upcoming fall. Former Big East rival Virginia Tech makes a return trip to Morgantown for the first time in some years. Finally, an opponent that we as a fanbase love to hate coming back into Morgantown. Just wait till Pitt and Penn State make their trips here in the next few years. The Backyard Brawl needs to be renewed annually in my opinion. 

Have yourselves a great day and the start of a weekend, looks like we are all pretty much stuck at home with all of the snow we have received and there is even more coming. 

Thursday, February 11, 2021

Photo Flashback Thursday




Once a week I like to take a little bit of time out, time to look at some of the 30,000+ photos that I have stored on my computer. Little lost moments in time that I either captured with a lens, scanned, or just stole from someplace on the internet. I like to find just one and post it up and recall or relive the picture to the best of my ability. Sometimes this is a pretty easy task and sometimes it's not that easy, one thing it has always been is a whole lot of fun.

This week's picture goes back to I would guess the summer of 1977. I'm looking awful sportish in my little league baseball cap, cut off shorts and my knee-high tube socks being held up by rubber bands. This was a very significant day in my life, but I have no idea why we took a picture of me and my then stepbrother Marty together. We were about the same age, but there was another reason we were all there. 

I remember this past Thanksgiving sitting on that great wall you see behind us, I was sitting with my niece Brittany and we were waiting for everyone to show up so that we could all go bowling that evening. I remember pointing to about where I am standing and asking Brittany if she knew anything about that spot. She did not. 

Now here is the irony of this picture, this was the very first time I can remember meeting my sister Kim who is only one year younger than me (or 35 years older depending on how old you believe I am). I also met my sister Terri close to there just about 3-4 years earlier. From where we are standing (and yes I measured it on google earth) I met my Sister Terri 195' (68 yards) from there. 

Pam and Gary I had known since birth, but my two sisters where I shared the same mother and father I didn't meet until I was 9 or 10 years old for Terri and 13 years old for Kim. Don't get me wrong I don't mind a picture of a stepbrother that this was our only meeting, but I think I would have rather of had a picture with my sisters. 

Have yourselves a great day. 

Tuesday, February 09, 2021

Tuesday's Tidbits

* It's two days since the Super Bowl and Tom Brady still has his 7 Super Bowl wins, why not just do a tidbits. 

* It has been 20,892 days since I was born, that is 21 years using my new and improved 991 day Calender. I prefer my calendar.

* It has been 6,113 days since I graduated from WVU with a Degree in Geography. Seems like only yesterday, but wow has campus changed since I was there. 

* 4,710 days ago Michelle and I had our first date together, Pizza Hut and 10,000 BCD movie. 

* 3,939 days ago I proposed to Michelle, 4:00 in the morning in the back yard, right where she feeds deer, squirrels, chipmunks, turkeys, and a large variety of birds on a daily basis. 

* It was 3,461 days ago in front of our closest friends and family, Michelle and I became husband and wife at the Marilla Center, married by a chiropractor. 

* I have now lived 1,101 days longer than my Dad did and I'm still going strong. 1101 was also my childhood street address. 

* I have 4,005 days to go until I retire, give or take a few hundred days here or there.

* The next Backyard Brawl where we beat Pitt's ass in Football is only 571 days away. I think I started this countdown with about 2,500 days. 

* 358 more days until Phil steps to center stage again for Groundhogs Day, he's held up his prediction so far this year, it's probably snowing right now. 

* 325 more days to go until my Goodbye 2021 Blog is posted, I'm hoping for a big year this year. 

* There are 319 more shopping days left until Christmas 2021. 

* The next Anniversary of my 21st Birthday will be in 295 more days. 

* There are 178 days until Michelle and I head to Pittsburgh to see Reba in concert. It was postponed this March to July and now they are pushing the tour until next year. It'll be my and Michelle's 10th wedding anniversary.

* There are 178 more days to go until Michelle and I celebrate our Tenth  Wedding Anniversary together. =)

* There are only 42 days until the start of Spring 2021!!!!! My favorite season of the year. Wait, that's six more weeks of Winter....what the heck. 

* I have written 6,305 blogs in the now 16 1/2+ years since I started blogging. 

* No Drone flights this weekend, hopefully, I can get a few flights in this spring. 

* Back to working for RTI, I did all the things I needed to do before Thursday for next weeks zoom training. A lot of changes have come down the pike, something tells me they will get big numbers this year. 

*  The Super Bowl was a great game, I really thought it would be much closer than it was. I did have a hunch Tampa Bay would win, but all signs pointed to Kansas City who I am sure will be back in it next year. 

* It looks like I will start training for fieldwork for RTI  next Tuesday. Not sure if we will be released to work, but it's on a county-by-county basis. Something tells me that since I'm in the last training session, Monongalia County might still be on hold. 

* Not sure if I have ever mentioned it before on my blog, but I Hate Snow. Don't even like it a little bit.  

* Corona Virus, you can still track it as it is now starting to pick up steam and the numbers are increasing. 

* We're now Gold for COVID for Monongalia County, although most of the rest of the state is red you can track the state stats HERE

* I'm STILL converting some old VHS tapes to Digital Format for Trish. I really need to get back on this as I am such a procrastinator.

* Have yourselves a great day.  

Monday, February 08, 2021

Monday

All good things must come to an end, and that includes not only our fun-filled weekends but also our NFL season as last night's Super Bowl was the culmination of not only College but Professional Football as well. We'll have to wait until this fall to see any football again, but unlike football it is the start of another fun-filled work week where we can make this a better world. 

Did see something quite large yesterday afternoon in the back yard, Michelle was getting ready to go outside and I saw her with the Binoculars looking up into a tree. She immediately told me to come here so I could see what she could see. What did I see, a very large Turkey Vulture sitting on top of one of the trees in the back yard. I've seen theme around here, especially when I've driven to Canaan, but I haven't seen too many around here much less in my back yard. They have a wingspan as large as 6', a few years ago we were driving to Canaan and almost had one fly into the passenger window of the car, and definitely got Michelle's attention. 

So what is on my agenda for the day, I'll update my computer and start of few of the online courses that I need to complete for my certification with RTI today. I have about a day or a day and a half worth of stuff that I have to have completed by Thursday and I'll just probably concentrate and knock them all out today. 

Have yourselves a great day today, make a difference in this world and most importantly stay safe while traveling as there is some adverse weather coming our way. 

Sunday, February 07, 2021

Super Bowl Sunday

Here I sit in a quiet household yet once again, Peanut must still be striking as I'm out here flying solo again. I'm actually up watching Saturday Night Live and getting ready to take my butt back to bed. 

OK Football fans, for those of you who love Football and the NFL, today is Super Bowl Sunday. The defending champion Kansas City Chiefs will be trying to defend their title against a team that will be playing at home for the first time in Super Bowl History, the Tom Brady lead Tampa Bay Bucs. This is Tom Brady's 10th Super Bowl appearance as a starting quarterback, that's pretty much unfathomable and almost Hollywood scripted, but this is his 10th Super Bowl. This could very well be a historic game of passing the torch from one great to the next as Patrick Mahomes (KC's QB) is just that good. I will definitely be watching this evening. 

We have wings thawing out, we have cheese sticks we're going to make and we're talking about getting a cheese ball, this is Super Bowl Sunday and that is pretty much our typical Super Bowl Menu. I think we have done wings every year since we first moved here. If memory serves me correctly, this will be our 12th Super Bowl here. 

Agenda for the day, going shopping this morning and then coming home and doing our chores and that's pretty much going to be it. Maybe watch a movie or two before the late afternoon/ early evening festivities kick-off. The kickoff is at 6:30 this evening, don't miss it. Kansas City is a 3 point favorite, but Tampa Bay is playing at home which I believe is a first. 

Have yourselves a great day, not making any predictions, just looking for a memorable game between two legends. Have a great day. 




Saturday, February 06, 2021

Saturday Morning Ramblings

Here I sit once again in a quiet household on a quiet Saturday morning. I'm up way too early to be up for the day and have some movie playing on HBO in the background. Peanut is fast asleep somewhere and I'm about to lay back down after I suck down an alka seltzer. 

The good news for the day, this is actually my first weekend, and more importantly my first Saturday off since before Christmas, December 12th to be specific. All of those weeks of contact tracing are over with and we're getting ready to gear up for the NSDUH project that pays RTI's bills. 

What's going on around town on this day, well the WVU Men's Basketball team begins a 6 game stretch today starting with the University of Kansas where our next 6 opponents are ranked in the AP top 25, the last 4 of those 6 games will be against teams in the Top 10. Talk about an absolutely brutal stretch, but we have already played 4 top 10 teams so far this season. Bob Huggins and these Mountaineers aren't ducking or hiding from anyone. 

I think Michelle plans on making a trip to Rural King sometime today to get some food for her 4 legged friends and then a trip to go and see her sister Chris. 

Have yourselves a great day. 



Friday, February 05, 2021

Big Ole Hairy Friday

Yes, it is once again that time of the week that we all look forward to when we can take time to cease the labors for the week and take a little bit of needed time out to enjoy the fruits of those labors. It is once again the dawn of another weekend and a Big Ole Hairy Friday.

No plans for the weekend other than to watch some random football game Sunday Night. It is Super Bowl weekend and we already jumped ahead and bought our wings for Sunday night, a tradition Michelle and I have had for some time is to eat wings during the Super Bowl. There have been years past when it was hard to find them on the grocery store, but we jumped ahead of that yesterday and have ours in hand. 

I am going to start training for my yearly certification for RTI probably early next week. There is an update I have to do to the equipment and I think 5 online pieces of training that I have to do before my virtual training and certification through a zoom call in a week or so. Not sure If I will have any segments to work this quarter, but they want is all to be ready in case there. are. 

I do have to replace the battery in Pearl. It's fine in warmer weather, but when it gets cold it just lacks the cold-cranking amps that she needs to turn the car over. In ten years, this will be the second time I've had to change the batter in Pearl, so I guess it is probably due to being changed as they don't last forever. 

Have yourselves a great day today and get ready for a good game on Sunday. 

Thursday, February 04, 2021

Photo Flashback Thursday



Once a week I like to take a little bit of time out, time to look at some of the 30,000+ photos that I have stored on my computer. Little lost moments in time that I either captured with a lens, scanned, or just stole from someplace on the internet. I like to find just one and post it up and recall or relive the picture to the best of my ability. Sometimes this is a pretty easy task and sometimes it's not that easy, one thing it has always been is a whole lot of fun.

This week's pic goes back to a time when the Pittsburgh Pirates and the Pittsburgh Steelers were both Champions. This image was taken early in my Sophomore year of high school (1979-80) and yours truly actually had a full head of hair. Grandma Hall was still alive and kicking and we were living at the old house beside where Starbucks here in Van Voorhis. 

This picture was taken the only year I did not play or attempt to play football and it was also about a year before I even started wrestling. 

It's hard to believe that this picture was taken over 40 years ago, it a little over 14 years ago with my new and improved 991 day Calender. =)

Have yourselves great day today.

Tuesday, February 02, 2021

Phil's Prediction

Phil, the great Groundhog from Punxutawney who is the seer of seers, the prognosticators of prognosticators has spoken to his handler. The language is known as Grounhogeze, a language only a few of us speak has informed his master handler of his prediction for 2021.

The little SOB saw his shadow. 

Groundhog Stew, with Bacon and Natural Wild Rice

Marinate the woodchuck, brown it, braise in stock, remove meat from the bones, then sweat some diced vegetables, add back the meat and cooking liquid, along with some rice, season it up, and voila. Have some good bread around, you're going to want to wipe the bowl clean.
Prep Time12 hrs
Cook Time30 mins
Course: Main Course, Soup
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Groundhog, Small game, Stew, Woodchuck
 
Servings: 

Ingredients

  • One roughly 2-3 lb groundhog skinned, gutted, rinsed and quartered (see photo above)

Marinade

  • 3 cups dry white wine
  • 1 bulb of garlic cloves lightly crushed with the back of a knife
  • 1 large sprig rosemary leaves torn off the branch
  • a small handful of fresh thyme sprigs roughly 6-7
  • 2 fresh bay leaves optional
  • Kosher salt and pepper
  • 1/4 cup blended olive oil or neutral vegetable oil

For the Groundhog Stew

  • 3 cups mixed vegetables diced 1/4 inch (I used a mix of carrots, potatoes, onion, celery and fennel)
  • 1 large tomato
  • 3 qts chicken stock preferably homemade
  • 4 ounces smoked pork belly or slab bacon diced 1/4 inch
  • 1/4 cup wild rice flour for dredging the woodchuck, optional
  • 1/2 tablespoon garlic minced
  • 1/4 cup dry sherry
  • 1/2 cup wood parched / natural wild rice or 1 cup cooked wild rice
  • 1 ear of sweet corn
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • Tobasco to taste, optional
  • Sliced scallions 1/4 inch, tender white and green parts only, optional

Instructions

Marinating

  • The night before hand, trim the groundhog pieces of as much visible fat as possible, then season liberally with salt and pepper, toss with the garlic cl0ves, oil, thyme, bay leaves, and rosemary. Put the seasoned groundhog pieces in a wide dish or casserole and pour over the wine. Allow the woodchuck to sit overnight or at least for 4-5 hours, turn it around in the juices now and then if you have time.
  • Cut the corn from the cob, then cut the cobb into 2 inch slices and reserve both separately.
  • To prepare the stew, render out the fat from the bacon in a wide 10 inch braising pan, remove the bacon and reserve, leave the fat in the pan.

Browning and Building the Stew

  • Remove the groundhog pieces from their marinade, pat dry and remove any rogue herbs or pieces of garlic. Toss with the wild rice flour, then brown on medium high heat in the bacon fat. Pour off the spent fat from the pan, deglaze the pan with the sherry, reduce by half, then add the stock, corn cob, cover the pan and reduce the heat to a gentle simmer. If you have time, skim the albumen and fat that rise to the surface of the pan occasionally as it makes a cleaner tasting stew. Simmer the groundhog gently for 1.5 hours, or until the meat can be picked from the bones.
  • Meanwhile, cook the wild rice in the chicken stock until just done, then strain out the rice and lay out on a plate or cookie sheet to cool. Reserve the wild rice liquid to add to the stew. It adds really good flavor, and that's why you're cooking the rice in chicken stock in the first place.
  • Remove the woodchuck pieces and cool, then pick the meat from the bones, give it a rough chop, and reserve. You should have about 2.5 cups of meat.
  • Remove the stock from the pan and reserve then strain it. You should have about 1 qts of liquid.
  • Wipe the pan, then melt the butter and add the diced vegetables and the garlic. Sweat the mixture until it's well cooked, and the vegetables are soft, about 15 minutes, then add the reserved woodchuck liquid, wild rice liquid and simmer for 15 minutes more.
  • Finally, add the woodchuck meat, corn kernels, and wild rice. Season the stew with salt to taste, then serve immediately with some Tobasco on the side. If not serving, chill immediately, transfer to a labeled, dated container and reserve until needed.