Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Freezing Rain, More Deer, and Christmas Tree Instructions.

Cold and Wet Morning
The Deer Show us how to run in Mud.
Winter is coming,  as the pelting balls of Ice demonstrated this morning.  I should be thankful that it was not snow or rain.   And that it quit just before we ran this morning.   Still,   the ground was spongy and muddy,  causing Cheryl and my bike to struggle.  I would say that the temp has fallen as well.   Looks like the Turkey Trot will be a cold one.

The Four Deer of The Apocalypse! 

While running this morning,  we kicked up the "harem" of the local buck.   5 does ran down the entire trail ahead of us,  demonstrating that they can handle the mud better than we can.
Catching up on stockings.

Cheryl will soon be buried!

We just finished the stockings and are now relaxing.   It is difficult to unwind after a tough day....  but the Holiday is upon us and can't wait to enjoy it.

New -ish Tree!
Not a lot of parts???
Yesterday,  I set up the Christmas tree.    I had some extra time and I figured I may not have the luxury after black Friday.   We purchased this tree last year at 75% off  after Christmas sales.  We have held on to it all this time.   I can't remember the last time I set up a Christmas tree. But looking at the instructions,  I appeared I could follow this one without reading too much.   Lucky me!
The Instructions seem easy...

I think there is a part missing...
Isn't Technology wonderful!   I used to have to unwrap each branch and set out the colors.... which had rubbed off after the first use.   And then fit it together like a jig saw puzzle.  Not so with this one!

Found it!   Done!
Cheryl is impressed.
Hiro is Impressed...  But he is not going to Climb it.
One...Two....Three... Four!  Done!   In the Corner where the lamp used to be.   The toughest part was moving the end table and lamp!  Cheryl likes it a lot.   I think Hiro does too.

Hiro with the "Climbing Cats"

Funny.  The cat does not want to climb in it as he once did when he was a kitten I guess without the evil influence of Rashi and Red,   he must think the tree is rather boring.   ( It was Red that loved to climb trees, after all)

So tomorrow I will be blogging from Des Moines, as Cheryl prepares to run off that Turkey Dinner we are not going to eat.

 That is correct,  we are skipping out on Thanksgiving this year.   We don't need the extra poundage that over-indulgence provides, and we already got our Family obligations out of the way.  I'm thinking they will probably be happy with two less people there anyway.   Most of the extended family have to do two Thanksgivings  with both families.   This might sound cold and dark,  But I'm almost relieved my family is no longer around!   (That is a Joke!   We always had a ball during Thanksgiving!)   But Too much Family on one day can really take a toll on your sanity.   Just my opinion.
"So if the Turkey was bad.... 

Last Year's Thanksgiving....
Hope everyone else is planning to have an awesome Thanksgiving.   We used to go Hunting in the morning on Thanksgiving day and then pig out  when we got home. ( Dad and Larry ( Dad's Friend) Actually got a Deer! Hunting  on one Thanksgiving day!  )  We would be so Famished when we finally got home ( usually around 4:30 PM)  that we would have eaten the plates!  Mom was not the best cook,  But she could definitely do Thanksgiving.   Ah the Memories!   Too bad I don't hunt nor can I eat like that anymore.   One of the down sides of age I guess.     Thanks for stopping in.

Monday, November 20, 2017

Kinda Busy With Stockings....

Lots of stockings.
 Well the stocking rush is on... It appears anyway.   Several days of 20+ stockings and Cheryl has to score for the next two days.   This makes time a precious commodity.   Any day over 20 stockings is pretty much a full day of sewing.   Add in the conversations and custom orders and the holidays that are rapidly approaching.    Looks like blogging will become more and more challenging. 
Cheryl printing labels
And again....

Running in the cold.
Running as Starfleet Commander

Cheryl has been trying to run a little each morning to keep her sanity.   I think it helps both of us.    I get to use my new bike....which is always fun.  The weather has been abrupt this last week.  Cheryl was able to wear shorts this morning.... otherwise we both nearly froze over the last three days.   Funny how the temps can go from 24 degrees to nearly fifty within 24 hours.   I've seen it in Alaska and Minnesota before,  but I never seem to get used to it. 
Running in shorts this morning.
Big Buck and Doe. 

Running over the Horizen

See you later..
This morning,  We managed to see the buck that was leaving all those tracks on the Kewash Trail.   He jumped up with a Doe right next to the trail,  but by the time I got the camera out,  he was in the middle of the soybean field.   At least I was able to capture his silhouette. I'm estimating a decent 8-10 pointer.

Hopefully we can stay caught up...
26 stockings for today....so far.   I just finished the names and Cheryl is currently scoring for ETS....so I'm not sure how much she will be willing to accomplish tonight.    She has the Turkey Trot on Thursday,   which means we will be in Des Moines Wednesday evening.    Hopefully we will not fall too far behind  in the stocking world.   Fingers crossed. 

Thursday, November 16, 2017

Subie Mile Stone; Farewell Giant Bike; Hello, New Trek Bike!

A Mile Stone!  

Yeah Subaru!
Hooray for Subie!   Japanese engineering done in the USA at its finest!   I remember when my Dad bragged that he "Might" get the Oldsmobile Delta 88 over 250,000 miles. ( He did I think.  three engines, two transmissions,  and loads of other parts missing)   I guess 250,000 miles was a HUGE achievement for cars back in the '80's.  Now,  with foreign cars ramping up the standard.... things tend to last longer.
Japan and US Team Work in Action!

Still,  Japanese vehicles lasting that long seems more common.  This will be the third Subaru to get over that many miles.   Cheryl does not want me to chat about this much.... Superstition  and all..  But I thought it would be worth noting on the blog.  Go Go Subaru!

Twisted Chain 

In addition to that,   My bike has finally bought the farm....  Coming from Iowa,  that might not seem like a bad thing...  But this is.  The chain kept slipping off the rear gear box.   I could see that the chain was twisted.   I thought I could patch it up quickly, ( All you need is a pair of pliers and a strong twisting action....  What could go wrong?)  but all I did was break it permanently.  Goodbye bike chain...  forever!

Quick fix!  What could go wrong?
No problems!    I was going to take it into the shop later anyway.   I guess I would simply move that visit up a few weeks.  The Problem was the diagnosis:  "Your bike is a goner!"

Looks like a new bike!   I like Blue.
Costs as much as fixing the Old one.
The guy could fix it up...but it would cost as much as a new one.   AND the very frame of the bike was rubbing against the car rack... causing the frame of the bike to weaken.   They would have to replace the gears, brakes, chain, and front tire.  Basically everything that could be replaced...and put it on a broken frame.  What good is that?!?!

My first choice. 
Disk brakes!
So,  A month before Christmas,  I had to pick out a new bike.   I should also note that this was happening : "Before we have very much money".   The stockings are selling,  but there is not that "comfortable pile of cash" in the bank that allows discretionary spending.  (When is there ever?)

Better Gears and 29" tires.   And I like Green.  
$75.00 more than the Blue one. 
Thankfully, I got Cheryl's permission.    I even sent her pictures of the bike I had in mind.    I could have bought a similar  bike for $350.00...  and I considered it.   But the bike that had many of the things I wanted, costs an additional $75.00.  ( And it was on SALE!)  Cheryl graciously said I should buy the one I want.    29 inch wheels ( as opposed to 26 inch)  and Disk brakes instead of rims.  I have yet to take it out and ride around on it... but I have high hopes.

Cheryl in warm weather.
Cheryl in cold.   See the grumpy?
The Cold weather has moved in and Cheryl has had to change her running attire as a result.   She is not very happy about running in heavy gear.   The week is supposed to warm up again later.    I had to chase her around in the Subie this morning...  And tomorrow is her day off of running.   I won't get to ride around on the bike until Saturday.   I can't wait!   I'm sure Cheryl can't either.

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

The Allenbrite Theme Song.

I thought about titling this post "Cheryl's Theme song".   But we are a team... even though I consider myself the "dumb one".   Well,   "Different kind of smart"  is the line from the song I like.  I think that describes me perfectly.

   We just finished 25 stockings and Cheryl continues to work packing things up and answering questions.   As for me,   I'm the court secretary...taking down all the notes and cataloging the activities of the day.   A Big responsibility?    I doubt it.   But what else am I going to do?

Other than stockings,  not much else going on.   The sun has set already and answering questions can take several hours... 

It was warmer this morning,   so Cheryl was able to run in shorts.   She was happy about that,  although she did have to cut the run a little shorter since we had the mountain of stockings.

Not sure what else to say about the season so far.  I'm not sure if I should be happy for sales or terrified.   As Always, I'm sure I will have a better look  after the season is over and we can look in the bank account.     Thanks for stopping in and enjoy the song.

Monday, November 13, 2017

Running in Mist and Frost.

Misty Day.
And cold!
 A foggy morning this morning.   Most of the fog is gone now, but a little still lingers.   With temps down around 25 degrees,  the frost build-up on the Subie was noticeable.   I forgot that I left my bike on the back and, as a result....I had to scrape off the frost from my bar-mitts and seat.   Making the bike ride just a little bit colder.
Cheryl runs in a frosty wonderland.

Watch out for Tractor Crossings!
The good thing about foggy days is the total lack of wind.    Without wind,  the cold is almost tolerable.   Cheryl even overheated around mile 4.  To me, it felt like I was in a McDonald's Cooler the entire time.   At least I was dressed appropriately.

Frost that looks like Thorns!

Even on the trees!  So fragile.
Another rare item was the frost.   I have not sen frost like this since I was above the Arctic Circle.   The ice crystals formed these thorn-like structures that gave the illusion of snow, even though there was no snow on the ground.   By the time Cheryl turned around,  the ice had melted and the effect was gone.   Such a wonderful and fleeting moment we were able to experience and capture on film. 

Cheryl chases  the Tracks.

Looks like it is a heavy one. 
As with Iowa City,  Cheryl rarely runs alone.   Although the type of runner changes when we go out to Kewash.   Today,  She was running with Deer...  We never really saw the deer,  but judging from its tracks....  it was heavy!   Since there was only one set,  I would think that it was a buck.   (Probably because that is all I have been thinking about lately)
A rather large Buck Rub... Who's could it be?

A Doe looking for Casanova .
We did manage to see a large doe in the corn,  but she was no where near that area.   In fact,   I found a rather large rub near her area;   that suggests she was looking for this monster as well. Ah,  to be in Iowa and in Love....

Subies Tire Fixed!
Reggie,the Local Tire Guy

I got the tire fixed while Cheryl started scoring.  Looks like it will be an "off stocking" day because she has to score a full 8 hours.    I will see if I can get ahead for tomorrow with what I can.

Reggie's Trophy.
Reggie is a champ when it comes to changing tires.   No appointment necessary.  Simply drop in and he fixes it.   My suspicions were confirmed as he pulled out a nice sizable nail out of the rear tire.   Fifteen minutes and fifteen bucks and I was on my way.    Speaking of Bucks,  Check out Reggie's Trophy.   About the same size as the one we saw two days ago.
Car hits Deer, Or in our case,  Deer hits Car!

 Even the news paper warns against the sudden craziness of the deer.  I guess that is what Hormones will do to you.  Interesting stat:  Iowa ranks #2 in the nation for Car/Deer  accidents!  That is a surprising stat.  I'm surprised Michigan is tied at #8...  ( with Minnesota)  But the rankings change from year to year.  I'm not surprised they break into the top 10.
Iowa is #2!  Yeah!  I think....

Cheryl scores.  Eth Blogs....
So the tire is fixed,  Cheryl is scoring, and the frost has melted away.   Looks like I'll be trying to occupy my time today with something meaningful.   I'm not sure what that is at the moment,  but looks like I will have some time to figure it out.   Thanks for stopping in.


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