Friday, March 21, 2014



I learned you have to let the nanny goats have babies so they will give you milk.

In my homestead summer twin black and white baby kid goats were born. They played with us, running, jumping, like two more children.

We went to cut hay in an area where they let you cut it and haul iy away. All the children had a wonderful day. The boys worked and we all helped load the fresh cut grass. I remember a big cutting tool. It was an adventure to go a long way from the Homestead. I remember going to a small store in Upper or Lower Tonsina. I think that is the name of the area. We brought the hay home home and stacked it .... kind of in a stack off the truck in a pile. We were allowed to play on the hay stack before we got it all off.

 We had an old truck, probably a one ton, and you could climb up on the running board, up on the fender, on the hood, up on the top of the cab and slide down the hay stacked in back of the truck. It was a ball! We were all doing it. It wasn't long before the twin goats were following us up over the truck and down the hay. It was fun having animals to play with like that. The animals on the homestead were a treat for me. I was never allowed to have animals in the house or many pets growing up. That's another story.
As the kid goats grew older they played with us less and hung around the nanny goats. That is not a good situation when you are depending on the nanny's for milk. A man from a homestead down the road came by and all the children were put in the house. I remember him joking that his knife was sharp. The boy baby goat was not a baby when he left, and he would not grow up to be a Billy Goat.


My brother in law Cler built a shelter for Rowdy, our big red cow, and put clean hay in it so she could have her calf in a nice place. The state cow guys would come out and check her. That was interesting ! They would put on rubber gloves that came up to their arm pits and go in side her. They said they could tell when she was going to give birth. All I knew was she did not like it. When the hay was unloaded from the truck it was stacked near the shelter.

Got to talk about RABBITS. I learned that most animals have cycles. Some years there are lots of rabbits and 7 years later there are very few. This year there were lots of rabbits, the adults stayed up nights guarding the hay with guns from the rabbits. We hoped we had hay enough to carry the animals through the winter. The rabbits had run out of food. Men from the surrounding area would come down and help our family guard the hay. The rabbits would come in throngs, hundreds. They shot hundreds of them. They had to use a front loader to dig pits to bury them.

When Rowdy had her calf she broke out of the shelter and in to the haystack and had him there. Through the years different animals had been brought to the homestead to provide food for the family. These had been named by the children and lived to an old age. SO we were told over and over IF Rowdy's calf was a girl that was a good thing. She would continue to give milk and the dairy would get a new cow. BUT if the calf was a boy ..... his name would be VEAL CUTLETS!
More Homestead stories later

Monday, March 17, 2014

Daytona 2014 - Florida 2

We drove the route we would take to the parking lot for the race, two days before, Just to make sure our memories were working. Then we drove around the track. It is fun to see the vendors and drivers rigs all set up.

Sunday morning we left early and the traffic was not too bad. Drove to the same parking lot, # 10, where we parked last year. It is out in the country side. You get off of high way 4 and take two lane roads through horse country, past barns, county fair grounds, and plowed fields. Lot 10 is a grass and alfalfa field that has been cut down. We remarked how the recent rain had kept the dust down. Last year it was very dusty. We didn't have far to walk to catch a school bus to take us to the race track. They have a loading area set up and people to get the buses parked and you on them as fast as possible. You are off the high way, parked and on the bus as fast as you can move. They remind you to park close and lock your car. The buses drive on the sides of the roads and in the turn lanes and on the frontage roads. I counted 6 school districts.  I found my self just as excited as I was last year. This is the 500 ! 250,000 fans WOW. We had pre race pit passes and went behind the pits and saw how they were set up. Found a car from Idaho, bought tee shirts and hats, a shot glass and drinks. Walked around the infield and then across the straight away into the stands. OK we all know about the high banking on the corners, but did you know from the infield .up to the stands is an up hill  hike across the straight a way stretch between turn 4 and the finish line and turn 1. And then you have to climb a ladder to get up to the gate off the track into the stands ! Boy if the guard had not lent a hand I am not sure I would have made it. Our tickets were as good as last year, at the top of the first section and the people around us were happy to be there.

We enjoyed 30 + laps before it started raining. The race stopped as soon as the rain started. We sat in a down pour for three hours. I know crazy - crazy. Well finely my underwear was soaked and I had had enough. If the school buses were not running we were going to take a cab back to the car. The crowd getting out of the track was awful. Pushing, shoving, the bleachers dripping, rain coming through.the cracks. I felt very short. We made our way out to the tram. It took us from the front to the back of the track. There we caught a school bus back to the parking lot. I am so glad they were running the buses, we were not the only ones leaving. The people at the gates reminded us to hang on to our tickets. They would be good when they started the race.

Our wonderful farmers field was now a swamp. We are lucky we were among the first to arrive at the lot. I was wadding in water and mud up to my ankles. Black mud, grass, rocks and trying not to get my shoes sucked off ! Our rental car was a Dodge Avenger and my traveling companion is a race car driver. That combination got us out of that quagmire. We drove out behind cars being pushed by people, trucks driving back and forth trying to find their way out. Just because you drive a big truck dose not mean you know how to drive. As we approached the road out of the lot, a driver in an Impala stopped and signaled us to go ahead. He could see we were going to make it if we didn't stop.We maneuvered around and over obstructions , shifting and keeping our momentum up and bounced up in front of the Impala. I'll bet AAA was busy that night. We were covered with mud and grass from the truck ahead of us. I saw one girl standing by her car with the rear quarter panel hanging off. Thank you Impala.

Back at the hotel it took a few hours, a tub, and lots of hot water to get me warm and in a good mood again. " do you want to go back ? Our tickets are still good." I will not print my response. They started the race after a 6 and 1/2/hour delay. They ran in the dark.The race was on TV. That was good enough for me, "hello room service ....." Can you imagine that parking lot in the dark after 3 more hours of rain .....

The next morning I began my trip south. I planed on seeing the coast of Florida down to Key West. As soon as we got south of Orlando the weather was better. Only a few hours of rain a few days later.
More later. Thanks for tuning in.

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Daytona 2014 + Florida

I leave for Orlando tomorrow. 2-19-14  Daytona !!  yay I can not wait!! I will have a few days in Orlando so I can shop and explore. I found out one of my favorite stores is there Soma Intimates.. They have closed in Salt Lake. I will see if I can find them.

Wish me luck with the weather and the airplane !! Our weatherman is saying it is going to snow here.
I confirmed all the hotels today for our stay.

I am going to miss my nieces wedding on the 20th. But I got them a nice room at a great hotel in Salt Lake.

 Thursday  2-20-14 Orlando !! 82 degrees ! The flight from Salt Lake City left on time as a cold front was moving in. It was bumpy as we climbed through it then Sunshine on top .
I sat next to a mom who with her family was returning to Ormand Beach after a week of Skiing at The Canyons . Ormond  is next to Daytona.We picked up clouds again  coming in to Orlando.

The residence Inn Marriott was nice for one night. Lake Mary Marriott was great. They upgraded us to the 10th floor,with concierge service.
 It rained cats and dogs for two days. Could not find the stores I wanted. Ate at Crabby Joe's. Found a great little ice cream parlor and had a wonderful chocolate shake.

Mobil 1 Race guys were staying and Tecking and entertaining the Stewart Racing Troops at the Lake Mary Hotel. Lots of stickers on the entrance glass, large floor mats in the lobby and check in area and a large conference / out side bar, entertainment area going for three days and nights.

Sunday, 500 day, broken clouds, ignoring the weather man. Hope Springs Eternal.

I wanted to post this from the road as I travel. I have not mastered my ipad, I am reading, and wifi is not reliable. So I am working from notes. I will edit and post daily for a while.
To be continued.