Tar and Abby

Friday, January 31, 2014

Fox on the job

Friend, recently moved to the foothills around Denver, finally got a picture of the fox who has her yard and deck as part of its daily route.

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Is that the sun?

Showed up for a brief period yesterday after an all day effort at clearing the fog and low clouds. Two windmills are on the right hand side of the picture.

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

go Seahawks!

The real version of the real seahawk - an Osprey. 
Hoping for do-able weather for the players, Broncos and all the fans.

Dear Georgia, we feel your pain.

Restrictions Eastbound:

Chains required on all vehicles except all wheel drive, Oversize Vehicles Prohibited.

Restrictions Westbound:

Chains required on all vehicles except all wheel drive, Oversize Vehicles Prohibited.

Otoh, We have the equipment, experience and a eagle eye on all our passes (some of which are routinely shut down over the winter). This is routine for the PNW. Next adventure avalanche control!
Sure hope things unsnarl down South soon.

Monday, January 27, 2014

Just one of those things that boogle your mind...

Flatulent cows start fire at German dairy farm - police

BERLIN Mon Jan 27, 2014 2:22pm EST
(Reuters) - Methane gas from 90 flatulent cows exploded in a German farm shed on Monday, damaging the roof and injuring one of the animals, police said.
High levels of the gas had built up in the structure in the central German town of Rasdorf, then "a static electric charge caused the gas to explode with flashes of flames," the force said in a statement.
One cow was treated for burns, a police spokesman added.

Hard earned snowglobe advice

What we have learned:
Do not believe everything you read on Pinterest. I could spot the trees tinting the water green after looking closely at the pictures of those cute green flocked trees.
There is no tree, or treatment, that will keep a tree from losing its color and all its texture. You are left with brown wire.
Little plastic ornaments work well.
I have yet to find a little plastic tree that meets my requirements - pretty and not kelly green.
Don't believe waterproof glue statements. Waaaay down in the tiny font they will state 'not for items left under the waterline'.
Aquarium silicone works best.
It has to dry 48 hours. 
Use enough glitter to settle on the bottom around the snowman. I like a crystal version with different subtle colors - mine is called multi-crystal glitter mix. My SIL said it was nice to watch the various colors flash as the 'snow' settled.
While I love the wavy lines in the jar on the left, bought at a craftstore, but it makes the snowman hard to see. The jar on the right is a commercial food jar. I changed the commercial jar to put the snowman on the bottom. Just to tricksy to put him in the water/glycerin mix upside down and now get the stuff everywhere. Glycerin is slimy. So now the snowman stands on the bottom of the jar.
Put in distilled water first to help mix all the components and fill most of the globe.
Add glycerin - too much glycerin and the snow stays up a long time and your subject will get bored waiting for it to settle. Just a small glug of glycerin on the right does the trick. Sorry do not have precise measurements of glug...  Glycerin is supposed to be available at your local pharmacy but mine did not carry it. They suggested Amazon. I got a nice sized container for $14.35.
Wait a couple days for everything to settle out before you declare a fail.

Sunday, January 26, 2014


We are a combination of three cities, each with its own government. The next town to us, just about 3 blocks over is now allowed to have chickens!!!
Abby so wants chickens to train, march in formation, obey her every command and leave tasty chicken poop for her to consume.
Tar thinks they would be fun to run thru and scatter like bowling pins.
They are each hoping for escapee chickens to show up in the neighborhood.

Thursday, January 23, 2014

this is a really, really bad idea!

They sent 600 ants to the space station for kids to observe for a school project.

ANTS! NEVER stay where you put them.

Right now I am battling ants who decided to come in and live behind the
There are all sorts of remedies but many would not do well slurped up by the world's biggest
Labrador. Finally decided cayenne pepper in the track of the slider where they were coming in.

No, no, no, no I told the dogs as they taste tested it. Once.

Did it work on the ants?

The next morning the ants were doing a conga line dance across the cayenne pepper.

I  broke down bought traps and taped them down. The ants wander around with absolutely
no interest in the Invitation to Death traps beckoning them.

Finally I made myself comfy, got the snozzle of the vacuum ready and vacced them up
as they exited the back of the dishwasher (I attempted to block the area with cream cheese (don't
ask) mixed with cayenne pepper. They ate it. So I am left with physical attack.

I haven't had so much *fun* since The Snake Incident

story about the potential disaster here

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Once again I forgot

to save the plant tags. Or, at least, write them down. Have no idea if these little deciduous-looking
trees will survive the winter. Bought them locally and like them a lot. The gnomes and I are in a wait and see period.

Sunday, January 19, 2014

This just stuns me

I'm of an age where I remember riding in a car past Tacoma, Washington and watching pitch black smoke pour into the sky from smokestacks. I remember particulate matter fall from the sky from the papermill in our town. Each parking lot had a car wash to drive thru on your way home from work.

As a country we fixed all that.

Why is China figuring this all our decades later?

"Giant digital billboard screens in Beijing have recently been used to display sunrises on mornings when the city’s air pollution is so severe that it blots out the rising sun. These photos were taken on January 16, 2014, when PM2.5 particulate air pollution spiked to 671 micrograms per cubic meter—the World Health Organization considers 25 micrograms to be the maximum safe level. "

Friday, January 17, 2014

Okay. Time for Spring.

We got gardening catalogs coming.
Taunting us.

Thursday, January 16, 2014

calming bottle with glitter

My friend and I brainstormed how this could work for the boys she works with.
A plastic water bottle seemed a good choice and having the boys make them so there is some ownership. (Middle school age)
After four tries I came up with this -
a combo of 1/3 glycerin and 2/3 warm water
and large surface glitter works best - stays up the longest. 
Contrasting glitters are pretty and visible.
The boys can choose when to glue on the top, so they can fiddle with it, but eventually it must be glued (to stop accidents around computers).

When life gets overwhelming, give the bottle a good shake and watch the glitter swirl.

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

sigh, another glitter/jar/water fail

A friend, who works in a classroom for behaviorally challenged boys, posted a picture of a 'calming jar' and joked that her classroom and all of the adults could benefit from it. (In reality it could become a missile pitched thru a window.)
The description was for a crying and frustrated child to shake the jar and be calmed by the falling glitter. The directions used glitter glue, regular glitter and warm water to dissolve the glue. So I did. Two hours later it looks like this...
I feel like pitching a fit and whining and being crabby.

Saturday, January 11, 2014

Seahawks Earthquake

The stadium and crowd are so loud that they set off seismic monitors.
And it was raining. And windy. Everything that is delightful about Seattle.
Graphic courtesy of the Pacific Northwest Seismic Network.

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Back to school

With a new version of the beard....

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Thursday, January 2, 2014

Abby's continuing campaign

to be a lap dog.
At least while Youngest is home.

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

The Mad Scientists

Have made a calendar. This is December 2014. Zinc Oxide under a very strong microscope.