Some say the world will end with fire.

Others say with ice.

From what I've tasted of desire

I hold with those that favor fire.

But if I had to perish twice,

I think I know enough of hate,

To say that for destruction ice,

Is also great and would suffice.

Robert Frost


"Good things come to those who wait, but, only the things LEFT by those who hustle." - Unknown (at least by me)

"Life is wonderful, without it you are dead." - Hy "Pete" Peterson - Park City and Kenecott Miner

"Don't worry about those people in your past---there is a reason they are not in your present." - Unknown

"Life's tough - it's even tougher if you're stupid." - John Wayne

"The only place success comes before work is in the dictionary!" - Vince Lombardi

"If you aren’t living on the edge, you’re probably taking up too much space.” ~ Attributed to Jim Whittaker by Doug ‘Swani’ Swantner, Alaska Smokejumper and Air Attack Base Manager (Ret.)

About Me

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I am married and have seven children and twenty grandchildren. I retired January 1, 2010 after working 39+ years for the Forest Service...NEW CHAPTER IN MY LIFE HAS BEGUN!

Saturday, May 29, 2010

NO CLAIM!!!! ;-)

I just got off the roof and was able to put the two shingles that blew off back in place and nail them. I also glued the whole bunch back together with roofing caulk at the bottom of each shingle. Then I glued them back to the roof with the same stuff. I was able to glue all of the shingles that have blown loose at the bottom back to the shingle below and all in all have that part of the roof back together.

We took a ride around the valley during the wind storm to look at the damage that was occurring---we hardly had any by comparison. We were way lucky that the wind stopped when it did or we'd have had a terrible problem.


Friday, May 28, 2010


The wind started blowing today before 9:00 a.m. As the day went on the wind blew harder and harder. By mid-afternoon there was a lot of damage in the valley. The McDonalds sign blew down mashing three cars and injuring a child laying in the backseat of one of them. Houses all over the valley have had roof damage from shingles blowing off the house. We have our very first environmental damage to our house or place of abode that we have ever had (in 40+ years). Right now it is hard to tell how bad it is but I have picked up two shingles that have blown off and there are several others sticking in the air. If the wind continues to blow this hard they will be on the ground soon too.

I can repair around three or four shingles but if it gets worse than that then we are looking at having to remove and replace them---glad we have insurance---hope we never have to use it. Right now I think I can fix the damage and re-seal the bottom line of shingles so this doesn't happen again. I don't dare get on the roof with the wind we have or I would have re-sealed the shingles before we lost any. The winds are steady at 40 with gusts to nearly 70 mph. I had trouble walking in a parking lot and I wasn't about to try walking on a roof in that.

Time will tell how much more damage we incur---hopefully we are finished losing shingles and it will be an easy repair---HOPEFULLY!!!

Tuesday, May 25, 2010


We are in the process of replacing the doors in our house. Many of them are broken and they don't make doors like ours anymore. When I went to see what I had to do to get new doors the guy at home depot told me all the things I would have to do. I decided I wasn't doing it but would hire it done.

I got a friend to do it for us---he came in and measured all the doors and they all had to be specially made because they are not standard size doors anymore--ours are 1/4 inch narrower than todays standard.

There were two choices of doors, solid and hollow core, with solid costing a little more money but being much better doors. We ordered solid core doors. They came and they were all hollow core...which means there was an error in the manufacturing ...the order was placed right by my friend and by the store where he ordered them from. This just goes to show that our law is correct---everything that can go wrong already has---and will again. After much discussion and cussin' we decided to go ahead and put in the doors that were delivered rather than wait an additional six weeks for new ones to be manufactured.

As they started mounting the doors they determined that one was completely the wrong measurement and would have to be returned but the rest were OK. Saturday they mounted five and Sunday they mounted five and yesterday they mounted one. That leaves one to mount and one to remanufacture and mount. It has taken a lot of time to make the little changes to the doors and door latches that didn't come out to exactly match what was in the measurements for our door frames.

I have watched this process carefully and there isn't a single thing they are doing that I couldn't do---but it would drive me absolutely crazy to have to do all the little things they are doing to make each door fit. I cannot understand how you can order something with exact measurements and get something different back and the manufacturer to think they have done a good job. I am soooo glad I hired my friend to do the job.

Saturday, May 22, 2010


We went to the ward breakfast this morning even though we had a carpenter coming to hang the new doors inside our house. We left a note on the front door telling him to come in and that we'd be back in a few minutes.

We got to the breakfast while they were still cooking the sausage so we got to visit a while with some of the folks that we see at church but never get to talk to. It was nice---but it was really cold (39 degrees) so we tried to sit in the sun. The three little boys (from our primary class) sitting across the table ran to sit by me and eat their breakfast. The one in the middle told his mother that I was his best friend. I was touched and really glad that we had taken care of the important stuff FIRST.

After we were home a while the carpenter and his son showed up to start on the doors. If we hadn't gone to breakfast all we would have accomplished would have been waiting for them to show up. That is the thing we do best is wait for someone to show up.


Friday, May 21, 2010


MJ flew in this morning for an eye doctor and a dentist appointment while she is still under our insurance. She arrived at 9:35 and flew out at 12:05. She thinks the Dr. fixed here eyes from her alergies and came out of the dentist with no cavities so guess we done good. We probably got to visit with her a total of an hour. It was good to see her though.

Thursday, May 20, 2010


My inheritance grew over the weekend of closing out my grandmother's old house. I got a bucket full of antique marbles. We bought the two bottles this week and cleaned them up. I thought for a while I was going to be able to get them all into one bottle but there were too many. I am happy to have them.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010


When our kids were little and we would get home to my families house I would tease the nephews and nieces until they would cry. I would keep that up until they would finally come to me and be good so I wouldn't tease them anymore.

My oldest brother's second son told him I was his half uncle. He asked him why and he told him it was because he only liked me half of the time. He's had a hard time living that down and I still introduce myself to his family as the half uncle. Here is a picture of me hanging one of his cousins on Grandma's clothesline. I hung them all this day by their belts or belt loops on the bolt for the eye hook that the clothes line wire was attached to---and then just walked away.

I did eventually go take them down---some cried but most laughed---especially after they saw the first one get taken down. Then the fear factor was gone.


While waiting for our youngest daughter's second session at graduation I was sitting on a chair at my oldest daughter's house. After sitting there for a considerable amount of time I nodded off. I awoke to the room full of people laughing.

While I was sleeping I was snoring (quite loudly I understand) and my granddaughter was sitting across from me on the couch. When I would snore she would growl, trying to get the same sound to the growl as my snoring. When I woke up she was giggling with everyone else laughing at her attempt to copy her Grandpa.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010


We buried a very good man today. He was a retired Utah Highway Patrol Trooper and they showed up in force today to escort him to his final resting place. We couldn't get a picture of all the patrol cars and motorcycles but he was well escorted as you can see from the pictures we did get. I was lucky to have him for a neighbor for the past eight years. I have shed a lot of tears thinking about him today and hope all is well with his family.

He broke his leg just below the hip a little over five months ago and never really recovered, when the leg was nearly healed they discovered he had bone cancer and it had spread all though his body. He lost the battle to it.

I believe that if you looked up integrity in the dictionary his picture would be there as the definition. He was a great guy. I am going to miss him very badly. I loved visiting with him about gardening and about things on the mountain.



We finished up all of the relocations in Grandma's house and all the stuff is ready to move. After we finished it up we went back to the motel--cleaned up---checked out and headed for home.

The trip home wasn't near as much fun as the trip going. We were tired, sore, and miserable. We did some laughing but not near as much as we did going. It was still a good trip and I am glad that all of the moving from the house is about finished.


Sunday, May 16, 2010


This weekend my older brother and the brother just younger than me went into Idaho to take care of my mother's old house since she passed away in December. We stopped at the State track meet for 1A-5A schools enroute since my younger brother helps coach the track team. It was awesome. Every five minutes there was another event being run. 1A started then 2 then 3, then 4 then 5; and then they would start another event as soon as they could get the kids lined up.

I have a new pair of sunglasses that tells you what your exposure for the day is to ultraviolet rays---at the end of the meet my exposure was five bars which is as high as it goes---so when we stopped for the night we bought some aloe vera lotion and smeared it over all the exposed spots. Today the heat is all gone---thank goodness.

Today we got started early and drove the rest of the way to our destination. We spent the day clearing things out and determining what went to the museum and what went to other places including DI. It was amazing how much we got done. Tomorrow we have to tear down a bed, move it and two dressers into the kitchen for later loading for delivery to one of us, and delivering the rest of the stuff to the museum. It was a really good day---REALLY.GOOD. Two of my daughters drove over to visit for a little while so that was really nice too---and we took advantage of the boyfriend that brought a friend with them and had them help move the FISHER stove---you know---the one that weighs about 1000 pounds. We got it done nicely.

OK here is the funny part---I don't get along all that great with these two brothers---I was really worried about coming along with no alternate method of transportation because I would have bet a lot of money we wouldn't still be working together to get through this. Yesterday on the trip up we talked about old times together and shared memories from the past. We laughed until we were all sore in the mid section and then someone else would tell another story and we'd laugh again. It was a good trip and we have all had a lot of fun---maybe this will help fix the break---maybe not.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010


Yesterday I called for a plumbing company to repair two sending units (I finally thought of the name them---it is solenoids) on our sprinkler system. They looked at it yesterday and said they would fix it on a day when the weather was warmer with no wind. This morning Inklings and I were heading out to the store to get some milk. When I backed into the road I noticed a repair truck parked along the side of our house. We pulled the car back into the garage and I went to see what was going on.

The repair guy was one of the owners kids and was about 20 or 21 years old. He had replaced one solenoid and repaired the leak in the pipe to the other one and was nearly done. I thought it was pretty amazing that they had sent this kid out to repair the sprinkler when it was 15 degrees colder and lots windier than yesterday. Guess that is the price you pay to be a child of the owner. I was amazed at how fast he did it and how good the job looked. He told me "I am one of the __Co.__ Kids and we didn't have any choice. We had to learn about plumbing."

I ran the tests for the sprinklers and all is well except I have one leak in the main line in the back yard--I'll fix that tomorrow after the ground has dried up a little from the sprinkling and flooding that it got today.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010


We have lived in this house for over eight years. This is the ninth spring. Never before have I had anything go wrong with the sprinkler system. Today I went out and turned on the main line. After that I checked each sending unit to make sure they worked properly....nope two of them have broken pipes leaving them. I wondered why now...and in checking I found that I never got the water turned completely off last winter so it leaked into the pipelines all winter (way to go dufus). With water near the sending units they froze and broke the line---and maybe the entire sending unit---we'll see.

A few minutes ago I called a plumbing service to fix it for me. There is no way I know enough about repairing it to do it myself. I could put it in the first time and be alright but to have to repair something in an existing line--with very little room to work---is way beyond my capabilities. Now if they come and just take the entire thing out, make the repairs and replace it in the line I am going to feel really stupid. REALLY.REALLY.STUPID.

The lady that took my call said they would call me when they return from lunch---between 1 and 2 sometime---guess I'll just sit by the phone until they call---maybe I really do need to get another cell phone.

Monday, May 10, 2010


My youngest daughter MJ graduated from college Summa Cum Laude Saturday, May 8, 2010. She made it through college in three years. I am proud of her.

Thursday, May 6, 2010


For this story to have any meaning you need a little background. I am about 5'7" and at the time this happened I probably weighed 145 pounds. The other guy in the story is about 6'2" and at the time probably weighed about 275 pounds.

For years this big guy and I had this little messing around thing going on where he would rough me up a little and I'd tell him "KEEP MESSING AROUND AND I'M GONNA HURT YOU---BAD." Then everyone associated with whatever group we were with would laugh--almost uncontrollably---because of the size difference.

I went over to assist with a wild fire that the adjoining district on a different forest was managing for resource benefit so it was a fire that you take action on where it gets outside of the parameters and let it burn where it is inside them. There were a couple of fingers that were outside and were being put out to get the fire back where they wanted it. We met on a ridge overlooking the fire with two Fire Management Officers (FMO), an Assistant Fire Management Officer (AFMO)[this big guy], the District Ranger for the area where the fire was and me (a District Ranger who was visiting another District Ranger's turf with a somewhat questionable invitation).

As soon as we got out of the rigs the roughing up---and keep it up and I'll hurt you started. It went on for a few minutes and I reached out and grabbed this guys right thumb and twisted it a little. There were two loud pops that everyone in the group heard and this big guy turned white as a ghost. I knew as soon as it happened that I had broken his thumb badly. I did---it was broken above the first joint in one place and just below the second joint in another. I was heart sick---I knew the break was serious and tried to stabilize it so it didn't get any worse with adhesive tape. Any way he worked through the rest of the shift supervising the suppression effort and went to the doctor that night after he got home. The doctor set the thumb and put a hand cast on then told him to be careful with the cast and not do any heavy work with that hand. The next afternoon we were all back on the ridge and there were some visitors from the RO there for the discussion.

He told everyone there not mess around with me 'cause I would hurt them real bad and then he held up his hand cast that was broken all to pieces from working and told them that I had done that to him the night before. Somewhere in that discussion his Ranger made the comment that she couldn't believe I had done that to him because she had always thought we were friends. (Which we are).

Anyway today he and his boss (one of the FMO's) stopped by the house to see me. I walked out to the vehicle to see who it was and he reached out of the passenger door and shook hands with me with a plastic hand. We laughed at that pretty hard. When he shook hands with my wife he shook with a really limp hand and said "Please don't break my thumb." He also told her that I had blessed him with "the ability to forecast any storm 24 hours before it arrived" due to the break. We all laughed but that was one really bad horse play accident that I wish I had never been associated with.

I am certainly glad that we have all remained good friends through all of that too.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010


Sgt. Aguilar enroute to his final resting place in American Fork, Utah. He was one of our Sheriff's Office Deputies. He was killed when he was hit by another car while he was helping with an accident. He turned 36 the day before he was killed. He leaves behind a wife and five children ages 1-15. My heart goes out to his family. I can't look at the procession photos without having tears in my eyes. There wasn't a dry eye on the funeral procession route. People lined the street and waved American flags as the procession passed.

Sunday, May 2, 2010


The running of the 136th Kentucky Derby was held May 1. It was a spectacular race on a soupy wet track. The winner, Super Saver, was ridden along the rail to the winners circle by Calvin Borel (the winning jockey in '07, 09, and now 10). It was a great run for the roses.

Gene Fullerton, a race fan, won a contest where they gave him $100,000 to bet on a winner for the derby. He couldn't just take the money---he had to bet it on a horse to win---and just one horse. He bet it on Super Saver (I can't imagine betting $100,000 on a horse race---even if it was someone elses money). The results---he walked away from the Derby with $900,000. Don't know what that is after taxes but it was a pretty good race for him no matter what the taxes are.

Now on to the Triple Crown---can Super Saver do it---NOPE. And that's my $0.02 on the matter.