Archive for the ‘Southwest Missouri’ Category
So the first thing we did was put plastic down in the hallways and anywhere we ran the hose. The idea is to prevent insulation from going throughout the house if the hoses separated at a joint. We also laid plastic down under the attic door, as with a hose you are bound to push some down in to your living space.
So today we have an electrician at An Duin who is finally rewiring the house.
I’m all for do it yourself engineering but there are somethings I much prefer leaving to professionals so I know that they are adhering to local code. Saves me a lot of headaches as well.
Meanwhile once he wraps up it will be time to get dusty with one of the easiest and dirtiest things you can do to help reduce your electric bill: insulation.
We found that a big portion of our attic space was completely void of insulation when we first did our home inspection. We used a broom and kicked some of it around (reducing the overall thickness) to try to make up the difference but that was band aid. Its time to actually fix the problem.
So here is some information that may help you should you ever decide to do this.
Finally made it home. Most likely going to try to spend as much time as I can with the family this weekend so doubt you will see many updates until maybe Monday.
I will probably check in to Twitter occasionally, however. You can find me via that lil floating window to the right of this post.
So we finally got the majority of the room complete and we have steadily been filling our shelves with the boxes of books we have had in storage for what seems like eons.
One thing to keep in mind, that while this is a Library room, its also meant to act as a quasi study, a Victorian, or throwback room heralding to our former culture norms, a room that is comfortable and made for relaxing, ready and quiet reflection. We wanted it to be old looking, and old feeling from start to finish, with only a handful of modern conveniences.
With that in mind lets be off!
I feel a bit sanctimonious posting about new dogs immediately after the loss of Huck.
The problem, unfortunately is more one of a lack of blogging on my part rather than one of poor intent. I’m trying to make it a point of posting more, but where as before I felt inspired, angry at the world in some cases, and otherwise driven to add my voice to deluge of people shouting against the whiles of the world, these days I find myself more often shaking my head in disgust and walking away.
At any rate a more pleasurable topic.
As of yesterday, Sherlock, Watson and Mary arrived at An Dun. It’s hard to say whom was more excited us or the pups. Training has begun, but not in earnest. I need to acquire three cages as the ones we initially procured are not going to be sufficient in anyway. That said we are all extremely excited to have the rug rats
I need to start with a couple of hat tips. First a big shout out got to the Baxter County Arkansas Animal control whose adoption process was not only painless but enthusiastic. The only downside to their operation is it is a “kill shelter” but I also understand why they don’t feel they have a choice starting with the funding just inst there. They rely on folks like me who want a pet and who aren’t looking for something with a pedigree 90 miles long.
We want a family member, not a paper trail and the staff there was more than excited to assist us. I cant say enough about these folks who I spoke to via phone and E-mail almost on a every other day basis.
Next All Creatures Veterinary Hospital in Mountain Home, Arkansas. They not only spayed and neutered the new additions to our home, they treated them for worms, distemper, rabies and fleas. They didn’t break the bank doing it either. For someone who wants to adopt an animal the process that Baxter and All Creatures has set up is not just reasonable its a medical god send frankly as your pet has damn near everything you need before you walk out the door without costing you a fortune.
You folks are awesome.
Lastly Dr Sherman at Oak View Animal Clinic. Dr. Sherman has had the misfortune of being with us through loss. She will now get to be work with us through the good fortune of life. We like her and her staff, the fact they have different payment options in a medical area that’s cost can quickly become exorbitant is beyond helpful and the fact that she is beyond competent is frankly an added bonus.
It’s nice to have An Dun filled with the sounds of canines again.
My soon to be wife and I were driving from Buffalo, NY to Avoca, AR looking to get a new lease on life.
I hadn’t been out of the Army long and a string of bad luck, and troubles followed in my wake. I needed a change before I changed the path on which I was traveling.
My mom and her husband had just closed on a house, and were moving out of a place that they were renting, a single wide trailer. It wasn’t much but the landlord agreed to transfer the lease to us.
While cleaning the place preparing for our arrival so they could move, my mother had hit a Burger King for lunch and was eating it in her truck. It was then she heard a whining sound outside her drivers window and turned to find a Rottweiler puppy outside her door.
So began our journey.
Trying to finish my Masters program and I’m working on a research proposal to pursue my doctorate.
All while holding down a job, being a husband and father and doing my stormchasing, dream home modifications. I also have an idea for a book in my head and have written a short story but have no friggin clue what the hell to do with them now. Thinking I might hit up John DuMond for advice, as all my published work is in a Sports magazine and I have never done a book before.
Any rate Some days I want to crawl under my bed.
Others I just want to sit on my porch and stare.
Recently I discovered that new SWEPCO Route 109 ruling is practically going to run through my backyard. That hasnt made my blood pressure any lower and I’m trying to see what legal options are available to me. I have filed complaints with both the Arkansas and Missouri Public Service Commission
I’m not burned out, but I am tired.
Just got to make it to May 9th without losing my cool.
Then life will slow down. For a while anyway.
I’ve been going hunting again.
I have not been in years. Up until about 1999 I was an avid hunter. But traveling as much as I did after that point made hunting a logistical nightmare and practically a impossibility.
So I quit and just did fishing instead.
I do some walking, and and some deer stand work. Nothing fancy. I’m not in to outdoor channels nor do I drool when the next camo pattern shows up in stores. I usually wear jeans when I hunt. Its more about being quiet, good and the creature not smelling you. Everything else falls in to place after that.
However truly I don’t care about the hunting. I prefer the peace.
A long time ago my grandfather gave me a piece of advice regarding the world. I have kept it near and dear, and recited it often. I have referred to it regularly and I find it on my mind a lot as of late.
There are folks out there who will take advantage of the kindness of others. To be clear this isn’t any group I am currently involved in, as I am involved in several, but rather an interpretation of our worlds state of affairs.
While a youngster in school I asked my grandfather about buying stuff for my school fundraiser. He refused and explained at the time”
“Offer sweat when required of you, blood when demanded, and money never.”
He later explained what each meant. You can volunteer your time, you can work hard and sweat to benefit society. Sweat is free. It’s easily generated. It’s your time. Blood is for wars, and defense of the things you believe in. Money however is reserved for the safety and well being of your family, and your families future. Money can be earned by those in need. Money should never be freely given. He explained it with wild life.
If you make it to easy for animals to get food, they come to expect it. Like bears raiding garbage cans. One day when they don’t find it, they’ll come demanding it from it’s source.
We’ve been pushed pretty hard here at An Dun. Critter under went surgery and that set us back on what little savings we had after doing a tremendous amount of work here at the house. In fact we don’t have any, now. My truck required some repairs to have it meet the state inspection standards, and my wife’s vehicle has another 4k in repairs I have to do to it. But I simply don’t have it.
This isn’t a beg. Or asking for money. Just me rambling some thoughts in my mind to clear my head.
I know no one currently who is not in hard times. I find myself focusing on seasons, concentrating on getting our house and land ready for winter, preparing to build a woodshed, and chop firewood. I see myself slipping back somewhat to my youth in watching the tree’s ,the skies and the land for changes of season. It’s not a unpleasant feeling. But it is a sobering one.
We have offered our time and our blood to a number of affairs over the years. It’s been enjoyable. We feel we have made a difference. But it is harder and harder to recognize that difference as more and more people come from the wood work needing assistance through the various charities we have done work in. I find myself growing disgusted with people in general.
I want to find them, shake them, and demand them: Find Work. McDonald’s pay sucks but it is work. A job is a job is a job. Take responsibility for yourself. Stop blaming the world. Handle your life. Raise yourself, and your family. At age 32 when I first moved to Arkansas versus being on unemployment, and after being a Project Manager for one of the largest telecom firms of the last decade I took a job cutting grass at a marina for barely more than minimum wage. Because it was a job, and I had a responsibility, and I had no time for the foolishness of saying a job was beneath me.
I’m currently examining taking a second job, possibly even teaching. Most likely online given my work schedule and load. But I can’t pursue it until I graduate. Thus time is not on my side at current.
Now Critter is experiencing adversity in her school. I have a very different interpretation of the intent by the staff. We offer our sweat, our time, and our efforts. But we don’t participate in sending money or fundraisers. We already spend a large sum for tuition. We pay our school taxes on top of that. Maybe it’s my families raising but asking for more just seems greedy. My interpretation of the adversity she is experiencing I feel is a direct result of our lack of spending. I see no other basis. I confess to being a sarcastic cynic as well, however. My wife disagrees but has no other theory to offer. However, that is why she is at the parent teacher conference this morning and I am home playing Nurse Dad. I am known to be….abrasive…when riled…and make no mistake, when it comes to my daughter I will rile easily.
In short it has been hectic around An Dun these days, and my grandfathers words have been tested. In good news, we fixed the leaks, replaced all the doors but one, repaired the foundation and have made a lot of headway. Now I fear my daughters birthday and supplying a Christmas.
They are first world problems. I do not argue this. I always keep in mind the places I have been. The things I have seen. There are others who are much worse off than us. Who would trade what little they had to be us in an instant.
But it does not make it an easy thing, just the same. In a little more than 6 months I will graduate with my Masters degree. I don’t know that I be fiscally able to continue with my current employer, and that bothers me as well. I have not shown loyalty to a single employer since my time with the Army, it could be said I have commitment issues. But I like my job, I like the company, I like the people. I just don’t know that I will be able to continue in such vein by the time my first student loan payment comes due.
As in all things, time will tell. And in that time the leaves will change, the snows will come, and the wind will blow. But in that I will be ready. The wood will be cut, the house will be warm, the roof solid. My grandfather taught me well.
The man who survived World War II, who survived the Great Depression, who lived off the land, who ate not from a store but from the woods, and drank from streams who did his best to pass on to us how to be the best people we could be, and showed us how to speak and act with intent, and integrity. It often leaves me confused in my interactions often around others who speak from the side of their mouths as to why they feel the need to do such things.
In her adversity, I try to teach Critter what was passed to me, and how to watch the seasons, the land, the leaves, and prepare. People who demand money will always be there. Vehicles always need fixing. Adversity at school is a constant. But one’s home is one sanctuary, and one’s family is a responsibility that can not be denied.
And in that, it can be said that no matter how technology driven our society becomes, how professional I may be seen to be, or business oriented, I learned my lessons from my very Appalachian oriented family well: My grandfather taught me well.
We will persevere.
So why aren’t I blogging more?
Well, honestly I’m fed up. I’m tired. I’m worn out.
With the knowledge that the Federal government is looking to do the largest land grab regulation since the aquisition of Alaska, I’m forced to ask some hard questions. Especially since it directly affects me
Is this the Union for which five generations of my family including myself, went to the Army for?
The answer is decidedly no.
The country we joined the service for did not use drones or spy on its citizens, and certainly not for profit. Something that the British citizenry are rapidly begining to dislike in their own country.
The country we served, did not lambast religious education systems of any form, especially while its own education system is continually outperformed by that same criticized system daily.
The country we served did not violate the rights of a land owner….something that I thought we straightened out in 1776, but apparently some folks have forgotten.
The country we served, encouraged people to earn their way, to make something of themselves, and to work for success not create a leach class that sucks the financial ability from all of the others. You earn it.
The country we served, did not allow others to determine thehealth care one got. It was up to the individual. You got what you could pay for. It wasn’t given. You earn it. Like everything else.
The country we served allowed anyone to go to college, provided you earned it. Not cut funding for college for soldiers who have been fighting, dying and getting injured to earn their degree versus sneaking across a border, illegally at night.
The country we served did not reward criminals, or those who knowingly broke the law.
In short I don’t know this country any more.
And I’m not sure I like it anymore either.
But sadly until folks decide to do more than “Like” a silly status on Facebook, it’s all just words.
The American people have become lazy. Sloven even. With no desire to change anything. The antipathy is a cancerous disease of self preservation that prevents any action by anybody. Instead we stand like lemmings in the room each staring at the other wondering who will make the first move.
Meanwhile the bulldozer just keeps coming.
The fact is, we embarass our forefather. We have shamed them. We are willing to let everything go, just so we can have our highspeed internet and high definition television programming. We are willing to subjugate, so that we can get a government check, a government benefit, a government handout because of all the things we could fear, the country that put a man on the moon….suddenly fears work.
Sadly, I fear this ideaology may be right….at least to some poor bastard.
We have politically corrected ourself in to oblivion. We can’t accept an apology and move on with our lives. We have to have blood for some social injustice while our government trashed our other social rights behind our backs.
We have become a nation of television, sound byte fed attention defecit children with no desire or care for the larger picture if it doesn’t meet some latest fad thats been identified as Good for the Children ™.
And frankly, it all makes me want to vomit.
So will I be blogging with any regularity?
Possibly. Maybe. Doubtful.
But I moved into the boondocks for peace and quiet.
I don’t intend to be spied on by a government that I once worked for under some silly notion of “Greater Good.”
Do your damn job more effeciently and stop passing laws to make it harder to put the bad guys behind bars or in the ground. Novel concept. The fact that Nidal Hasan is still breathing air in the same time zone I am is proof enough that this country has lost its marbles, and its balls.
But thats too hard. Its much easier to pass the buck than it is to be responsible. Everyones worried about some bullshit legacy or history book consideration. Everyone ants to be a star.
And nobody wants to do their fucking job.
By now, the media has updated everyone on the events of the weekend. I wanted to share a thought this morning with one of the groups of people I work to try to keep appraised on the side, and whom I thought could appreciate the scenario.
If you own a weather radio or read the NOAA updates, you have probably heard or read the end tag “Spotter Activation will not be needed” at the end of a report. Or the ever worrisome “Spotter Activation will be needed at…..” and wondered what it all meant.
Those are the lines that put me and other spotter/chasers in to action each night on a alert level. Without muddying the waters I get called for other items but those lines are a “Heads up!” alert for all the spotter organizations in an area to be ready, we think it is serious. These individuals, groups, and teams- all volunteers, will spring in to action and spend their day, evening and often nights trying to keep the various NWS offices appraised with scientific data, visual cues, and imagery to help us send alerts, balloons, and warnings to the national media and direct systems like weather radios.
The price was heavy in keeping folks appraised over the weekend. Three men whom I have had the pleasure of working with since my start in the weather industry Paul Samaras, Tim Samaras and Carl Young residents of Colorado and California, died while trying to plant a measuring device in front of the Canadian County tornado. http://newswatch.nationalgeographic.com/2013/06/02/the-stunning-tornado-videos-of-storm-chaser-tim-samaras-who-has-died/
It is one reason I seldom directly chase anymore. The storms are getting more unpredictable in the last 2 years (from my perspective anyway), and the influx of what we call “storm lice” or folks who are not professional storm chasers but throw themselves in front of storms recklessly because they think it fun, or cool has increased three fold. So you no longer are simply concerned with just a storm, but with endangerment of those around you. It’s a nightmare scenario, personally. However, I do chase, and did that night from Tulsa, through Bella Vista, Exeter, Cassville and in to Springfield and past in to Marshfield. We were spread too thin, with too many storms, and too little chasers.
I know how many folks will react, pointing out that storm chasers take risks. I wanted to say that Tim did not take risks. Tim was as cautions as they come. The storm made a hard jog north as Tim tried to place instrumentation in its path and his safety zone became a danger zone. One, that with a tornado that spun up as rapidly as this one did, he could not escape. Even with 4 weather centers, and over 12 people watching the storm, and the radar, myself included, none of us could contact Tim fast enough to have him change course…the storm moved that fast.
These were folks I have shared coffee with, talked with, swapped E-mails with and spoke with. They were not nameless entities on a computer or celebrities on a TV screen. What they did saved countless lives in other places and their information that night went directly to NWS Norman to call for the cover of at least 3 cities before they were struck. In any occupation, you have the risk takers…from snowboarding to boating. I just wanted to set the record straight that they was none of these, as they were good people trying to do something good to help others.
Moreover, the fact of the matter is the casualty rate was much lower than it could have been in OKC, people were prepared despite the mass chaos and dangerous storm going through a heavily populated metropolitan area. All of that is directly because of people like Tim, Paul and Carl. Because of them, we could coordinate, identify damage, and send out warnings to the places that needed them. We received measurements, visual identification, pictures, video, and calculations. None of which we would have without boots on the ground in a dangerous environment.
We have more storms coming this week. Starting tomorrow night most likely and again at the end of the week. As we measure the back build I’ll let you know what’s coming. Right now, count on hail, and high winds. And Spotters being in the field
Nestled within the Seven Valley region of Southwest Missouri, lies the home that was voted to be called An Dun.
It’s a work in progress. We’re still unpacking in fact, a slow and tedious process with our work and school schedules.
Since procuring the home place, we have painted the entire interior of the house. I have also discovered a lot of water damage that I have been working feverishly to repair. New doors. New carpet. New fridge.
Current vote tallies are as follows.
An Leargaidh The Slopes 2 Votes
An Dun Hill Fort 2 Votes
Monadh Liath Grey Mountains 1 vote
Cair Ceann Tulaich Fort of the hillock 1 Vote
And lets not forget an honorary mention for Caisleán Critter
Don’t forget to check here for the full list.
Vote tallies will end the morning of Saturday April 20th.
As for me? I’m trying to maintain decorum. Of course inside I’m screaming. 5 and a half hours and it will be all over.
So here’s something to set the mood. Caoineadh Cu Chlainn, probably one of the prettiest songs I know of, as performed by Bill Whelan and played on a Uilleann Pipe.
For Dr. Burton of MSU
I’ve done a lot of things with my website over the past several years. When I first started at Techography.com back in 1995 we wrote tech articles in layman’s terms for people. There are a lot less laymen today than there were in those days and the need for what we did I think is not as great. We slowly have veered away from it and split the sites in to two sites with different focuses reflective of ourselves as we have grown older as well, one with a more tech face (that we really haven’t focused on or bothered with any degree of dedication whatsoever in probably 5 or 6 years) and this one which is mostly my playground.
When we first moved to southwest Missouri, I was exploring the backside of our property and came across huge boulders, the size of vehicles. At least one set that runs along the ridge that we live on, is almost the length if not surpassing the weight of, my home. Combined with the inability of grass to grow (but weeds can, hey they’re green!) in the amazingly rocky soil we named our home An Creagan, a Gaelic word that means “Rocky Place” or “Stony Place”.
We are looking to buy a home, and we have made an offer on it. We feel comfortable in saying it will be accepted. For us a home needs a good name, something that its residents can be proud of, to lay claim to it. It helps to instill a since of pride and ownership. It doesn’t have to be plastered on the outside or raised over the drive, but can be just something to reference between us and friends. It gives a home a personality. Many folks I have met through the years call their places The Ponderossa, or simply The Home Place. One being from a old west television show and the other just country simplicity. But we all identify to the word “Home”, we just give Home a less common name, if that makes sense.
The new one differs only in a few ways from our current place. For one its not a mobile home but a real house. It’s also not as high up. It is on a hill top, but you have to go down in to the valley interior, and it’s actually on a knoll in the center of the valley that An Creagan over look’s. So it has elevation, but the ridges come up around it blocking the view that my current home has. It’s on a grassy and tree lined knoll between the ridges.
Also it has no great stone boulders on the property. And while the dirt is certainly as rocky, the previous owners of the house spent a good deal of money on topsoil so that it has good rich earth surrounding the place.
I am considering naming this place something else, should all go well and we manage to obtain it. We will be retaining An Creagan and moving my mother in to it (supplying her a home as every good son should) so it feels wrong to strip a name from a place that has so gallantly held it for so long.
For the new place, as it is centered in the valley I am considering a few names but none have leaped out at me.Then i figured I’d let ya’ll do some picking for me.
In Gaelic there literally dozens of words for Hills, and grove and those words are combined to form descriptions of specific places. So a bhuidhe or yellow and neach or that place becomes buidheanach or yellow place. But typically names don’t stop there. They usually designate further quantifiers like shape, size, and other descriptors giving it three words or more. A hill might also get named after a famous soldier – saighdear
Here’s a few examples and let me know of any you like or come up with your own:
- Daire or Oak grove, as the new house has several live oaks surrounding it.
- Cnoc da Darach or Hill of Oak
- Cnoc sa Poll or Mountain in the hole (Since the house is on a hill top, thats in the Valley’s lower regions)
- Saighdear caillte or Lost Soldier
- Saighdiúirí An chuid eile or Soldiers Rest
If you don’t like these dig around. There a few resources on the internet and Google translate isn’t bad. Or hell just drop a comment and I’ll translate it for you. My Gaelic isn’t phenomenal but its passable.
I know this because I, in turn, received a scathing E-mail from Mr Lager about those damn “unfactual bloggers”.
I’m not surprised. She’s good at that sort of thing and I have a lot of respect for her. I’m also not surprised at getting E-mails from a campaign that I A) am not following B) didn’t ask to receive E-mails from and C) have not even the remotest interest in the candidate in question.
I’ve been rooting for Pete Kinder ever since he forked over his own money to fight the healthcare law. That takes balls in my book, and his stance on illegal immigration is well known in these parts. Besides that, frankly I’d take Barney the Purple Dragon over Claire McCaskill.
I will openly admit to knowing very little about Brad Lager and frankly what I do know I don’t care for. Don’t take anything I say at value. I am a “nonfactual blogger” according to Mr. Lager.
Go view his voting record yourself.
My pet peeve? In 2006 Lager voted against restricting the use of Eminent Domain.
And then he voted to expand it’s use to take help the government take our properties away from us.
He voted to expand abortion laws.
He voted to keep criminals out of prison.
But you don’t have to take my word for it. It’s all right there in black and white.
Just remember I’m not factual, and neither are any other bloggers out here. For the record, while Kinder isn’t spotless his record is much more solidly in my decision process frankly.
Frankly I didn’t have a dog in this hunt, and haven’t written one whit about it until i saw that “unfactual blogger” bit. It really torques my jaws when I see these silly half-assed lawyers degrade folks who are at the fore front of grass root operations.
You can see our retort to Mr Lager and his fine staff after the jump.
When ever I can I like to publish communications for my local representatives. With no further adieu here is our semi regular contribution from David Sater
The legislative session is wrapping up in this final week of session. Going in to the last day of session, the House and Senate passed just over 70 bills with one day to go. That is 70 out of over 1,000 bills filed. I sometimes wonder about working months on a piece of legislation and then in the last two weeks, one Senator or one person in Leadership in the House decide to table your bill. But, it is always better to error on the side of caution than to pass something that might be more harmful than good.
A piece of legislation that was of great concern to local businesses and county government was House Bill 1329. A month or so ago, a judge decided that county and local sales tax on vehicles and boats purchased out of state could not be collected when the car or boat was titled at the license bureau. These taxes have been collected for more years than I can remember. Already, car and boat dealers from out of state are advertising the savings a Missouri resident would get if they purchased the vehicle or boat from their out of state dealership. This bill would simply reinstate the sales tax that has been in existence for many, many years. Without this, Barry County may not have any local car or auto dealerships in the future. It also places a huge hole in the County`s budget of over $20,000 per month. The bill has passed the House and Senate, but we do not know what the Governor is going to do. He has made comments about a possible veto.
There’s good news and bad news on my individual legislative efforts. This “good news/bad news” scenario affects all legislators. I was able to get my small grain dealer bill through, which changes the amount a grain producer can purchase and produce from $100,000 per year to 50,000 bushels. This was needed because the price of corn has increased the last few years from less than $2.00 a bushel to over $6.00 a bushel. This bill will help our local small grain dealer in Exeter.
I was one out of two on pharmacy bills. My success was changing the statutes to allow pharmacies in Missouri to purchase prescription drugs from out of state pharmacies. Previously, the out of state pharmacies had to be licensed by Missouri. Now they do not, because credentialing in all states is basically the same. This enables the free market to work to transfer drugs from one pharmacy to another. This happens when a pharmacy has one patient on an expensive drug and the patient moves away or has their regimen changed to another drug. The pharmacy is then stuck with a product that might be very expensive. The bad news is that my pro-life/pro-business bill that simply stated that a pharmacy has the right to stock whatever product they want without governmental interference did not make it through the Senate. We will get it done next year.
There was some fear this year that funding for the Missouri Veterans Homes would be cut. We found some money by giving them the casino admission fees they originally received prior to 1998. Under this provision, our veterans homes will receive an additional $30 million dollars which is enough money to keep our homes open and viable for years to come. This will now be a steady funding stream.
Contact me anytime by calling me at my home in Cassville (417/847-4661) or my Capitol office (573/751-1480). Thanks for letting me serve.