Mother Nature has been a bit stingy in providing rain to us here in South East Central Texas. Rainfall amounts received this year:


In. Rain


January 3.43
February 0.47
March 1.10 All occurred 1st week of month
April 0.04 Just a heavy dew
May 1.06 Received 12 May 2011
Total 6.10 Since Jan. 2011

Today’s rain is associated with a front. There is a Northeast Southwest band of rain approximately 100 miles wide moving across our part of the state in a easterly direction at 40 MPH. At that speed it didn’t around long enough to give us too much rain. We will take all we can get and be happy we received it. The drought has not been broken!

Wildfires have been a concern over most all of the state of Texas. Here locally they have not been a problem. Folks have been very careful about outdoor burning. Yesterday a fire North of Columbus started from sparks from some sort of equipment being towed on FM 109. The 5:00 PM News reported that approximately 50 acres had burned and several homes were at risk. The 10:00 PM News reported that the fire was contained, no homes lost and that fire crews would stay on site overnight putting out hot spots. The strong winds we have been experiencing make these fire hard to control. It doesn’t take long for a fire to get out of control and the only thing fire fighters can do is go into defensive mode to save lives and structures.

One inch of rain is not going to last too long but it will allow me to not have to water the garden for a couple of days. I suspect dry air will move in from the north and later tomorrow all evidence of this rain will be gone.

Until the next rain…….

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Respect for the Pledge of Allegiance

On 23 April 2011 Claire wrote in her blog about Respect. An article by the news media reported that a school district in the region changed their policy concerning students participation reciting the Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag. Apparently a couple of the school’s student decided to exercise their “right” not to stand during the pledge. The administrator of the school, after consultation with the ACLU, changed their policy and now anyone who has no respect for their country and flag does not have to stand. Why would anyone want to give up a right and privilege when our right and privileges are slowly being taken away under the guises of national security?

Below is a cartoon that carries a very powerful message.

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Question of the Day

A great deal of thought went into selecting a site for all the military bases that have been built in this country. The planners selected sites that were as remote as possible from inhabited areas so that the 24/7/365 activity of training would not disturb the local population.

As time went by the civilian population has encroached upon these bases with business, housing developments, schools, churches, recreational areas etc. Today many military bases are completely surrounded right up to the boundaries of the base. Whether this country is involved in a military conflict or not training must go on, some of it at odd hours of the day and some of it being very loud. Most of the civilian population living near a base does not understand this and are of the opinion that the military does it to antagonize them personally. Many base commanders have to routinely field complaints about the activities on their base.

This is a complaint to a military base and the response I saw in an email. It may or may not be a real complaint however it is very typical of many that I personally saw while stationed at a Naval Air Station.

The complaint:

Question of the day for Luke Air Force Base:

Whom do we thank for the morning air show? Last Wednesday, at precisely 9:11 A.M, a tight formation of four F-16 jets made a low pass over Arrowhead Mall, continuing west over Bell Road at approximately 500 feet. Imagine our good fortune!  Do the Tom Cruise-wannabes feel we need this wake-up call, or were they trying to impress the cashiers at Mervyns early bird special?

Any response would be appreciated.

The response:

Regarding ‘A wake-up call from Luke’s jets’ On June 15, at precisely 9:12 a.m . , a perfectly timed four- ship fly by of F-16s from the 63rd Fighter Squadron at Luke Air Force Base flew over the grave of Capt. Jeremy Fresques. Capt Fresques was an Air Force officer who was previously stationed at Luke Air Force Base and was killed in Iraq on May 30, Memorial Day.

At 9 a. m. on June 15, his family and friends gathered at Sunland Memorial Park in Sun City to mourn the loss of a husband, son and friend. Based on the letter writer’s recount of the fly by, and because of the jet noise, I’m sure you didn’t hear the 21-gun salute, the playing of taps, or my words to the widow and parents of Capt. Fresques as I gave them their son’s flag on behalf of the President of the United States and all those veterans and servicemen and women who understand the sacrifices they have endured..

A four-ship fly by is a display of respect the Air Force gives to those who give their lives in defense of freedom. We are professional aviators and take our jobs seriously, and on June 15 what the letter writer witnessed was four officers lining up to pay their ultimate respects.

The letter writer asks, ‘Whom do we thank for the morning air show? The 56th Fighter Wing will make the call for you, and forward your thanks to the widow and parents of Capt Fresques, and thank them for you, for it was in their honor that my pilots flew the most honorable formation of their lives.

Only 2 defining forces have ever offered to die for you….Jesus Christ and the American Soldier.
One died for your soul, the other for your freedom.

The United States is currently engaged in war in several foreign countries. With all the men and women in the military serving abroad and here at home, one would think that most everyone would be intimately aware of what it is like to be in the service or a spouse, child, parent or other close family member of a deployed service member. Actually those persons only compromise about one percent of the total population of this country. Most everyone has at one time or another been in the military or had a family member in the military or knew someone who was or is in the military. However they have not had to say goodbye to a deploying spouse, father, mother, son, daughter, sister or brother and wonder when or if they would ever see loved one again. For those of us not in that situation it is easy to forget the sacrifices being made to preserve freedom for us all. The next time you are annoyed by that low flying jet, the convoy conducting maneuvers slowing you down or want to complain about the noise from the live firing exercise, remember that those annoyances are part of what allows you to enjoy so many freedoms, even the one to complain.

I think the last paragraph in the response to the complaint says it best:

And remember only two defining forces have ever offered to die for you,

Jesus Christ

And the American Soldier



One died for your soul,



The other for your freedom.


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Latest Happenings

Really not much, still no rain. Woke up this morning and we had no electricity. Called Bluebonnet Electric and their machine said they knew of our outage and that they expected power would be restored in two and a half hours. They said that it was a major outage. Power was restored in one and a half hours, we were pleasantly surprised.

A week ago four refineries on the Houston Ship Channel experienced major power outages and had to go into emergency shut downs and burn offs. Causes of the power outage was salt accumulation on the insulators of the power lines. The salt provided a path for electricity to short to ground and pop all the circuit breakers. Rain normally washes this salt away however with this drought the salt just builds up until the sparks fly.

Our reason for power outage was similar except we had dust accumulations instead of salt and high humidity in the early morning hours. Again rain normally removes this dust but what rain? There were a few utility poles burning around the area according to the local media.

Rain is forecast for the next three days, 30 to 40 percent chance. I’m not betting the farm that it will rain though! This weather system will probably move past us to the north as all the other. We all hope that when it moves further East it won’t be a repeat of the destruction that occurred a couple of days ago. Tornado’s are one of Mother Natures most powerful phenomena. I have had the pleasure of experiencing the fury of a tornado, the date was 5 June 1950 2:10 PM. Everything starts out as a normal thunderstorm, suddenly a roar starts, becomes deafening, all hell breaks for ten seconds, the roar fade and its back to whatever is left of normal. All of this happens in 60 seconds or less. At the beginning of the 60 seconds you had a house, at the end of the 60 seconds you may have a foundation if you are lucky. The only other thing that could cause as much damage in the same short time is a large bomb. It is something you will not forget.

The Garden: It is still there and need a soaking from the well twice a week. Even with the water the plants look kind of droopy in the heat of the day. I added six tomato and one pepper plants. Will stop with that unless the moisture situation changes soon.

We had our fist mess of green beans and beets last week. The turnips, Claire’s favorite, are just about ready. The english peas have a few pods but the plants are prone to get mildew in warm weather. Don’t think they will produce much.

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We are worried about ‘the cow’ when it is all about the ‘Ice Cream’

The internet is home to many, many websites that report the goings on in congress and the oval office in our nation’s capital. A recent article I read had to do with our country’s huge and growing fiscal deficit. It was typical biased prose (can’t recall which way the wind was blowing that day) written by a well known columnist. This website allowed readers to write and post comments about the article. Very few of the comments have any substance to them however every once in a while someone has something to say that is worth reading.

Here is what the commenter said:

The most eye-opening civics lesson I ever had was while teaching
third grade this year….

The presidential election was heating up and
some of the children showed an interest. I decided we would have
an election for a class president. We would choose our nominees.
They would make a campaign speech and the class would vote.

To simplify the process, candidates were nominated by the other
class members. We discussed what kinds of characteristics these
students should have. We got many nominations and from those,
Jamie and Olivia were picked to run for the top spot.

The class had done a great job in their selections.
Both candidates were good kids. I thought Jamie might have an
advantage because he got lots of parental support. I had never
seen Olivia’s mother.

The day arrived when they were to make their speeches.
Jamie went first. He had specific ideas about how to make our
class a better place. He ended by promising to do his very best.

Everyone applauded and he sat down.

Now is was Olivia’s turn to speak. Her speech was concise. She
said, “If you will vote for me, I will give you ice cream.” She sat

The class went wild. “Yes! Yes! We want ice cream.” She surely
would say more. She did not have to.

A discussion followed. How did she plan to pay for the ice cream?
She wasn’t sure.

Would her parents buy it or would the class pay for it.
She didn’t know.

The class really didn’t care. All they were thinking about was ice
cream. Jamie was forgotten…Olivia won by a landslide.

Every time Barack Obama opened his mouth he offered ice cream
and 52 percent of the people reacted like nine year olds. They want
ice cream.

The other 48 percent know they’re going to have to feed the cow and
clean up the mess.”

This is the ice cream Obama promised us!

Remember, the government cannot give anything to anyone —
that they have not first taken away from someone else. “”

Did you vote for the ice cream?

I do not know if this is a true story or if it is fiction. What I am certain of is that Olivia has an excellent chance of becoming President of this country when she grows up—and it will make no difference which political party she aligns herself with!!!!

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A Very Touching Story

This is a very touching story and very hard to read.  Be prepared!

It is story about two brothers that were separated at birth. Last year on Easter they were united.

It is a story about life and death, a cruel twist of fate.

It’s certain to touch your heart and soul.

Happy Easter!

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Tough Year


2010 was a tough year, but I made it!!!

Ragged Rooster


The economy is so bad that:

I got a pre-declined credit card in the mail.

I ordered a burger at McDonald’s and the kid behind the counter asked,  “Can you afford fries with that?”

CEO’s are now playing miniature golf.

If the bank returns your check marked  “Insufficient Funds,” you need to call them and ask if they meant you or them .

Hot Wheels and Matchbox stocks are trading higher than GM.

McDonald’s is selling the 1/4 ouncer.

Parents in  Beverly Hills  fired their nannies and had to learn their children’s names.

A truckload of Americans was caught sneaking into  Mexico .

Motel Six won’t leave the light on anymore.

Exxon-Mobil laid off 25 Congressmen.

Congress says they are looking into this Bernard Madoff scandal. Oh Great!!   The guy who made $50 Billion disappear is being investigated by the people who made $1.5 Trillion disappear!

And, finally…

I was so depressed last night thinking about the economy, wars, jobs, my savings, Social Security, retirement funds, etc.,  I called the Suicide Lifeline. I got a call center in Pakistan , and when I told them I was suicidal, they got all excited, and asked if I could drive a truck.

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