Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Are you a Carrot, an Egg, or Coffee Bean?

A young woman went to her mother and told her about her life, and how things were so hard for her. She did not know how she was going to make it, and wanted to give up. She was tired of fighting and struggling. It seemed as one problem was solved a new one arose.

Her mother took her to the kitchen. She filled three pots with water. In the first pot, she placed carrots, in the second she placed eggs and in the last she placed ground coffee beans. She let them sit and boil without saying a word. In about twenty minutes she turned off the burners. She fished the carrots out and placed them in a bowl. She pulled the eggs out and placed them in a bowl. Then she ladled the coffee out and placed it in a bowl.

Turning to her daughter, she asked, "Tell me what do you see?"
"carrots, eggs, and coffee," she replied.
She brought her closer and asked her to feel the carrots.
She did and noted that they got soft. She then asked her to take
the egg and break it. After pulling off the shell, she observed the
hard-boiled egg. Finally, she asked her to smell and sip the
coffee. The daughter smiled, as she smelled and tasted it's rich
aroma. The daughter then asked, "what's the point, mother?

Her mother explained that each of these objects had faced the
same adversity-boiling water-but each reacted differently. The
carrot went in strong, hard and unrelenting. However, after
being sunjected to the boiling water, it softened and became weak. The egg has been fragile. It's thin outer shell had protected it's liquid interior. But after sitting through the boiling water, it's insides became hardened. The ground coffee beans
were unique, however. After they were in the boiling water
they had changed the water.

"Which are you?" she asked her daughter. "When trials and adversity knock on your door, how do you respond? Are you a carrot, an egg, or a coffee bean?"

Think of this: Which am I?

Am I the carrot that seems strong, but with pain and adversity, do I wilt and become soft and lose my strength?

Am I the egg that starts with a passive heart, but changes with heat? Did I have a fluid spirit, but after a death, a financial hardship or some other trial, have I become hardened and stiff? Does my shell look the same, but on the inside, am I bitter and tough with a stiff spirit and a hardened heart?

Or, am I like the coffee bean? The bean actually changes the hot water, the very circumstance that brings the pain. When the water gets hot, it releases the fragrance and flavor. If you are like the bean, when things are at their worst, you become better and change the situation around you.

When the hours are the darkest and trials are their greatest do you elevate to another level?

How do you handle adversity?
Like the CARROT, the EGG, OR the COFFEE BEAN?

After my week of *trials* I feel I am like the coffee bean.

Monday, May 29, 2006


I had grand ideas about having something really entertaining, or at least amusing to say today, but my brain does not seem to want to function.

This last week, I have been covering for my co- worker's vacation and just this morning I was telling my self that tomorrow, Tuesday, when M returns from vacation, will be a day to look forward to, at last I will be able to get some rest.

Forget about any rest tomorrow. M called me, this afternoon from an Airport back East, to say that their early morning flight had been cancelled due to bad weather. M called again later this afternoon to let me know they had finally managed to book seats on a flight Tuesday AM.
Groannnn!!! I will have another day, or perhaps two days work ahead of me before I get time off.

Memorial weekend was very busy at the spa. When you have a *Desk Diva * job as I do, I am responsible for not only making guest appointments, checking guests in and out, scheduling appointments, helping the therapists with some setup, keeping caught up on the laundry and many other small chores to numerous to mention,which help the whole operation run like a well oiled wheel, I also have to be cheerful, friendly and professional which can be a #*%#@* challenge when you are exhausted. You would be proud of me, I managed to get through the day without chewing anyone out. Now if only I can manage the same tomorrow, wish me well.
So off to bed I go, to try and get some sleep and be somewhat rested for my day tomorrow.

Mother of the Year Award

Thanks to Bob

Sunday, May 28, 2006

The Carnival Of Recipes Is Here

The carnival of recipes is up at
One happy Dog Speaks.

If you are wondering what to serve over the Memorial day holiday, you really should go on over and check out all the wonderful recipes. I am sure you will find something wonderful to serve your family and friends.

(Logo borrowed from the host site.)

The Moral Of The Story Is

Young King Arthur was ambushed and imprisoned by the monarch of a neighboring kingdom. The monarch could have killed him but was moved by Arthur's youth and ideals. So, the monarch offered him his freedom, as long as he could answer a very difficult question. Arthur would have a year to figure out the answer and, if after a year, he still had no answer, he would be put to death.

The question?.What do women really want? Such a question would perplex even the most knowledgeable man, and to young Arthur, it seemed an impossible query. But, since it was better than death, he accepted the monarch's proposition to have an answer by year's end.

He returned to his kingdom and began to poll everyone: the princess, the priests, the wise men and even the court jester. He spoke with everyone, but no one could give him a satisfactory answer

Many people advised him to consult the old witch, for only she would have the answer.

But the price would be high; as the witch was famous throughout the kingdom for the exorbitant prices she charged.

The last day of the year arrived and Arthur had no choice but to talk to the witch She agreed to answer the question, but he would have to agree to her price first.

The old witch wanted to marry Sir Lancelot, the most noble of the Knights of the Round Table and Arthur's closest friend!

Young Arthur was horrified. She was hunchbacked and hideous, had only one tooth, smelled like sewage, made obscene noises, etc. He had never encountered such a repugnant creature in all his life.

He refused to force his friend to marry her and endure such a terrible burden; but Lancelot, learning of the proposal, spoke with Arthur.

He said nothing was too big of a sacrifice compared to Arthur's life and the preservation of the Round Table.

Hence, a wedding was proclaimed and the witch answered Arthur's question thus:

What a woman really wants, she to be in charge of her own life.

Everyone in the kingdom instantly knew that the witch had uttered a great truth and that Arthur's life would be spared.

And so it was, the neighboring monarch granted Arthur his freedom and Lancelot and the witch had a wonderful wedding.

The honeymoon hour approached and Lancelot, steeling himself for a horrific experience, entered the bedroom. But, what a sight awaited him. The most beautiful woman he had ever seen lay before him on the bed. The astounded Lancelot asked what had happened

The beauty replied that since he had been so kind to her when she appeared as a witch, she would henceforth, be her horrible deformed self only half the time and the beautiful maiden the other half.

Which would he prefer? Beautiful during the day....or night?

Lancelot pondered the predicament. During the day, a beautiful woman to show off to his friends, but at night, in the privacy of his castle, an old witch? Or, would he prefer having a hideous witch during the day, but by night, a beautiful woman for him to enjoy wondrous intimate moments?

What would YOU do?

What Lancelot chose is below. BUT....make YOUR choice before you read further. OKAY?

Noble Lancelot said that he would allow HER to make the choice herself.

Upon hearing this, she announced that she would be beautiful all the time because he had respected her enough to let her be in charge of her own life.

Now....what is the moral to this story?

The moral is.....
If you don't let a woman have her own way....
Things are going to get ugly

Thanks to Raewyn

Saturday, May 27, 2006

Keep Your Paws Off My Tissue Paper

This piece of tissue paper is still in pretty good shape, considering Rocket has been pouncing on it since last Christmas.

Friday, May 26, 2006

Mandarin Orange Cake

After you have enjoyed your B-B-Q this Memorial weekend leave room for a piece of this delicious cake.

It is a moist fruity cake and very quick and easy to make.

1 box yellow cake mix
3/4 cup oil
3 eggs
1 (11oz) can mandarin oranges
(juice and all)

1 (20oz.) can crushed pineapple
1 (3.4oz.) pkg. vanilla instant pudding
1 (8oz) cool whip

Mix all ingredients for cake. Bake in 9x13 inch pan at 350F for 30-35 minutes.
Cool completely before frosting.
Mix pineapple and pudding well. Fold cool whip in.
Frost cooled cake, and refrigerate.
Serve chilled.

Natures Laundering

I woke early this morning hearing the sound of rain on the roof. As I lay there half awake and deciding whether I should look at the clock to check the time, I was lulled back into a state of deep relaxation, my eyelids getting heavy again and thoughts of another couple of hours sleep feeling soooo! appealing. Dang, that little time keeping, irritating, responsible, part of my brain kicked in and made me take a look at the clock and reminded me I had another early start today.

I dragged out from under the warm covers, talked my stiff joints into moving with a, * you can do it, come on, one foot after another* (when you grow older, sometimes your body needs a little encouragement) and wandered out to the kitchen to brew a pot of strong coffee.

After my first cup of coffee, and a check of my emails it crossed my mind *what am I going to blog about today?* sometimes you just don't have anything in mind. It occurred to me that even though is was a wet misty day, there must be something outside in the garden that was painting a corner of the yard in color.

Sure enough, the pot of Mimulus, which have self sown from last year, are starting to come into full bloom. Mimulus are also called Monkey Flower as they are supposed to resemble a grinning monkey face, can't say I can see a monkey face.

The Hostas are glistening with rain drops, the bright green of the leaves glowing in a dark corner.

We really are happy to have the rain wash some of the pollen away as it has been particularly bad this season, and everything looks so wonderully clean and bright after a good downpour.

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

They Could be In Your Neighborhood

I live in a semi-rural area. We recently had a new neighbor call the local township administrative office to request the removal of the Deer Crossing sign on our road.

The reason:

"Too many deer are being hit by cars out here!

I don't think this is a good place for them to be crossing anymore."

From Kingman, KS.


My daughter went to a local Taco Bell and ordered a taco. She asked the person behind the counter for "minimal lettuce." He said he was sorry, but they only had iceberg.

He was a Chef?

Yep...From Kansas City!

I was at the airport, checking in at the gate when an airport employee asked,

"Has anyone put anything in your baggage without your knowledge?

To which I replied, "If it was without my knowledge, how would I know?"

He smiled knowingly and nodded, "That's why we ask."

Happened in Birmingham, Ala.

The stoplight on the corner buzzes when its safe to cross the street.

I was crossing with an intellectually challenged coworker of mine.

She asked if I knew what the buzzer was for.

I explained that it signals blind people when the light is red.

Appalled, she responded, "What on earth are blind people doing

She was a probation officer in Wichita, KS


At a good-bye luncheon for an old and dear coworker.

She was leaving the company due to "downsizing."

Our manager commented cheerfully, "This is fun. We should do this more often."

Not another word was spoken.

We all just looked at each other with that deer-in-the-headlights stare.

This was a bunch at Texas Instruments.


I work with an individual who plugged her power strip back into itself and for the sake of her own life, couldn't understand why her system would not turn on.

A deputy with the Dallas County Sheriffs office no less.


When my husband and I arrived at an automobile dealership to pick up our car, we were told the keys had been locked in it.
We went to the service department and found a mechanic working feverishly to unlock the drivers side door.
As I watched from the passenger side, I instinctively tried the door handle and discovered that it was unlocked.

"Hey," I announced to the technician, "its open!"

His reply, "I know - I already got that side."

This was at the Ford dealership in Canton, Mississippi!



They walk among us ...

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Maori tattooing

Although there is still the occasional elderly Maori woman with tattooed lips and chin, the Maori art of tattooing (moko) has long since died.

Maori kaumatu with full
face tattoo, the mana that comes with age brilliantly captured.

In Classic Maori society the male was liberally embellished, with fully tattooed decorated cheeks, chin, nose and forehead as well as buttocks and thighs. Tattooing was a sign of status and far from simply decorating the face, the Maori of rank did not acquire his 'real' face until he had been tattooed. Personal tattoo patterns were often remembered rather than facial characteristics.

Maori wahine with chin
and lip moko, wearing a feather awarua-cape

Carved figure with full
face tattoo

Tattooing was a painful process, conducted with uhi (serrated chisel) and mallet, soot being rubbed into the open wound to provide colouring. The Maori technique differed from other Polynesian tattooing in that designs were actually cut and not just pricked into the flesh.

Learn more Here about the Maori.

Math and Stuff


Smart man + smart woman = romance
Smart man + dumb woman = affair
Dumb man + smart woman = marriage
Dumb man + dumb woman = pregnancy


Smart boss + smart employee = profit
Smart boss + dumb employee = production
Dumb boss + smart employee = promotion
Dumb boss + dumb employee = overtime


A man will pay $20 for a $10 item he needs.
A woman will pay $10 for a $20 item that she doesn't need.


A woman worries about the future until she gets a husband.
A man never worries about the future until he gets a wife.
A successful man is one who makes more money than his wife can spend.
A successful woman is one who can find such a man.


To be happy with a man, you must understand him a lot and love him a little.
To be happy with a woman, you must love her a lot and not try to understand her at all.


Married men live longer than single men do, but married men are a lot more willing to die.


A woman marries a man expecting he will change, but he doesn't.
A man marries a woman expecting that she won't change, and she does.


A woman has the last word in any argument.
Anything a man says after that is the beginning of a new argument.

Old aunts used to come up to me at weddings, poking me in the ribs and cackling, telling me, "You're next." They stopped after I started doing the same thing to them at funerals.

Gonna' Be a Long week

View from the spa desk

I am fortunate to have a three day work week, EXCEPT, when I cover for the other Desk Diva's time off. This week I will be working seven days with just Wednesday off.

There will not be any time for gardening or much else except blogging, I do feel better that the weather will be in my favor, as the forecast is for overcast and rain most of the week, who wants to garden in those conditions anyway?

I do have a wonderful setting in which to work. The spa is located right down by the water, and as you see in the photo I do have a pretty nice view. When I have caught up on all the spa chores, I can read a book, or take the phone and sit outside in the sun, if there is any.
Well, it is time to get my day started, you all have a wonderful day.

Monday, May 22, 2006

Carnival of the Recipes

Carnival of the Recipes is now available for your viewing pleasure:

The hot weather is on the way. If the thought of heating up the kitchen is not appealing, then go and check out all the slow cooker recipes over at practigal.

I plan on using my slow cooker often this summer.

Sunday, May 21, 2006

Basel Switzerland

Dragonfly has kindly sent more wonderful pictures for our viewing pleasure.

Here we have the head of the Lälle König - King. He faces the
Rhine river, and sticks out his tongue at the town folk living
on the other side of the river. Even today there are people
who never cross the bridge to the other side of the river -
the feud lives on.

These fountains have been created by a Swiss French Artist by the name of Jean Tinguely.

A postcard picture of the Tinguely fountains covered in thick ice and snow in winter.
A magnificent sight.

Thank you Dragonfly, we look forward to seeing more in the future.

Saturday, May 20, 2006


Today I got to try out my new gun at a bowling pin top match. This past week Mr.C put in a great deal of time going over the gun making it *Keewee friendly* which meant a couple of modifications to make it easier for me to use.

Mr.C also worked on *fine tuning* the magazines as they were picky on which ammo we used. It seemed some brands of ammo fed through just fine then others would hang up. We put many rounds through and were satisfied with our choice of ammo.

I must say, my new, but 40 year old, High Standard model 103 Sport King with a sharp shooter barrel, is a fine accurate weapon and is a joy to shoot. It is going to take me a while to retrain my *muscle memory* from Beretta to High standard. I may have done a little better today in the match if I had been a more familar with the Magazine release, I did fumble which cost me valuable time, however, I did manage to place 4th out of eight shooters in optical, Mr. C placed 3rd in optical and 1st in Iron sight.

Unfortuately, I also had ammo problems so Mr.C gets to do some more gunsmithing. Once all the kinks are worked out and I am comfortable with shooting the High Standard, THEN it will a whole lot more fun.

Friday, May 19, 2006

Friday's Sunset

We are fortunate to see many spectacular sunsets.

Kahlua Bread Pudding

The variations of this pudding are endless.

Kahlua is good, as is Baileys You can also leave out the liquor and make it plain with raisens. (make up leaving out the liquor with 1/4 c. milk)

The recipe calls for a 4-5 quart slow cooker, I do not have one that size so I halved the recipe and got creative and improvised for the bowl and trivet.

The cookie cutter made a good substitute trivet, and the bowl just fit into my cooker.

1/2 (16oz.) loaf unsliced french bread
2 (12oz.) cans evaporated milk, or 3 cups half and half
1/4 cup Kahlua or your choice
3 eggs
1/3 cup sugar
1tbsp. instant coffee
1/4 tsp cinnamon

Place a metal rack or trivet in cooker. Grease an 8-9 cup baking dish that fits into your cooker.
Cut the crusts off your bread, (feed the crusts to the birds or make breadcrumbs)
Cut bread into 1 inch cubes, put into a bowl.
Place in blender or food processor, milk, Kahlua, eggs, sugar, instant coffee, and cinnamon.
Mix well.
Pour over bread, stir to blend.
Pour into greased baking dish, and cover with foil.
Add 2 cups hot water to cooker and place mold into cooker on trivet.
Cover and cook on HIGH 2-21/2 hours, or until knife inserted in center comes out clean.
Serve warm with cream or ice-cream.

I like to turn my bread pudding out onto a plate and cut into wedges.

Rocket Fuel

Rocket loves to play with this orange plastic covered piece of wire. Every once in a while it is nowhere to be seen, then Rocket will come by with it in his mouth, drops it in clear view, meows and gives us *the look*

We have figured out this *expression* means, "you throw the wire down the hallway or across the room and I will chase after it." Once in a while Rocket will delight us by picking up the wire in his mouth, bringing it back to us, and dropping it at our feet waiting for us to toss it once again.

It takes a huge amount of 'rocket fuel' - kitty food, to keep him running.

Ready for the Carnival

The theme for this week's Carnival Of The Recipes is crock pot recipes.

I love to use my slow cooker during the summer heat. Not only does the house stay cooler if I am not using the oven, I can leave the cooker to do it's job and go to work or play and come back to a meal already pepared. As I have two cookers, I can have the main course in one, and dessert in the other.

Yesterday in between watering the garden, attending a meeting and waiting for another yard of compost to be delivered for the garden, I made the recipe for the carnival.

Oh ! Boy! is this one yummy, we know for sure, as Mr. C and I both had to *taste test* it, twice. Quality control is very important, you know.

I will post the recipe later on tonight.

You all have a fabulous day.

Ulla Taylor's pavement art

Ulla Taylor has performed at Festivals and events as a pavement artist since 1987.
Her work ranges from community art at festivals creating original images of celebration... to fine handcrafted promotions and enhancements for government departments, businesses and corporations,
The street art murals are created on brick, asphalt, and concrete surfaces..

Trumpeter Swans and Beaver at Kakawa Falls La Grande Prairie AB Canada 2004

Thursday, May 18, 2006

Sven and Ole

Sven and Ole worked together and both were laid off, so they went to
the unemployment office.

Asked his occupation, Ole said, "panty stitcher. I sew the elastic onto ladies' cotton panties."

The clerk looked up. "Panty stitcher?" she thought.
Finding it classified as unskilled labor, she gave him $300 a week unemployment pay.

Sven was asked his occupation. "Diesel fitter" he replied.
Since diesel fitter was a skilled job, the clerk gave Sven $600 a week.

When Ole found out he was furious. He stormed back into the office to find out why his friend and coworker was collecting double his pay.

The clerk explained, "panty stitchers are unskilled and diesel fitters are skilled labor.

"What skill?" yelled Ole. "I sew the elastic on the panties. Sven just
puts them over his head and says, 'Yah, diesel fitter.' "

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

My visitors for Wednesday

I always find it interesting to see where people are coming from to see what's going on at Keewee's Corner and Keewee's garden.

Maori Whakatauki, or proverb

Whakatauki have a translation and a meaning. The meaning is usually based on Tikanga or history. This only gives the translation of the whakatauki.

He toa taumata rau

Bravery has many resting places

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

There is the promise of a sunscreen day

At five am, from deep slumber, I was serenaded awake by a robin outside the bedroom window. It is now seven am and he is still singing for a mate, or he is just singing for the pure joy of it, I would be lifting my voice to the heavens if I could sing like him.

With my freshly brewed mug of coffee in hand, I very quietly opened the front door, you never know what critter you may surprise right outside, and stepped out onto the front porch into the warmth of the sun.

Early this morning it was very still but the air vibrated with a chorus of trills, warbles, chirps, and peeps of birdsong.
As I stood there on the step listening to all the sounds, trying to recognise the various voices of the chorus, I was aware of a flutter of wings to my right. Turing my head very slowly so I would not startle the bird who was very close, I saw a little house wren taking straw into a nesting box we have nailed to the front of the carport.
On Sunday, as I sat in the shade, catching my breath after working in my garden, which is adjacent to the nesting box, I watched the same little wren building her nest. At first she was very nervous by my proximity but soon became comfortable and went about her business as though I was not there.

As I quietly walked around the yard, so as not to startle any critters, I came across many rabbits of all sizes chewing down the grass in the pasture. It is so fun to try and sneak up on these guys as you can get only so close before they are aware of your presence. Long eared, beady eyed bunny heads pop up out of the long grass and give you a look determining if you are friend or foe, then there are rabbits hopping in all directions to get away from danger, real or not. I guess they are not going to take any chances.

My morning adventure soon comes to a close, there are chores to be done, a work meeting to attend, a dentist visit, then the rest of the day to PLAY! WHOOHOO!

Monday, May 15, 2006

Basel Switzerland

More wonderful photos from my friend dragonfly.

Here is the famous Rhine river, which runs through Basel , Ger-
many and Holland. The Rhine bridge devides Basel into two
sections - Small Basel and Big Basel - an age old feud.

Chris de Burgh sings "Don,t pay the Ferry man, till he gets you
to the other side" but on this Ferry you will pay first before
you get on.

Click on pictures for larger view.

Sunday, May 14, 2006

Mother's Day at The Carnival

Happy Mother's Day Ladies.

If you get a minute go on over to The carnival of Recipes and check out all the wonder full recipes

Scrumptious, it's a special Mother's Day Edition of the Carnival of the Recipes!

Shawn has done a fantastic job with this week's Carnival.

Saturday, May 13, 2006

Best Laid Plans.

Our day started out being startled from sleep by the alarm clock at 5:40am. We were going to Kitsap for a steel plate challenge match. We did not get to the range.
Mr. C has the story HERE
After we arrived back home, I spent the day working in the garden moving topsoil to a new garden and getting it ready to edge with rocks.
It seemed not too long ago, I could work in the garden from dawn to dusk and would not feel tired until the end of the day. Now I need to take a break after about three hours, gee! I must be growing older!

Friday, May 12, 2006

Recipe: Rich ‘n’ Creamy Brownie Bars

Bake Mother a treat for Mother’s Day Sunday 14th
Let her know how special she is.

Rich ‘n’ Creamy Brownie Bars

1 pkg. Duncan Hines Chocolate Lover’s Double Fudge Brownie Mix
2 eggs
1/3 cup water
¼ cup oil
½ cup chopped pecans

8 oz. Cream cheese softened
2 eggs
31/2 cups powdered sugar
1 tsp. Vanilla

Preheat oven to 350F
Grease 13x9x2-inch pan

Combine brownie mix, contents of fudge packet, eggs water, and oil.
Stir with spoon until well blended.
Stir in pecans. Spread evenly in pan.

Topping: beat cream cheese until smooth, beat in eggs, powdered sugar, and vanilla.
Spread evenly over brownie.
Bake 350F for 45-50 minutes or until edges and top are golden brown and shiny.
Cool completely, refrigerate until well chilled.
Cut into bars.

Picture courtesy Duncan Hines

A Thought For Friday

Life is like a blanket too short. You pull it up and your toes rebel, you yank it down and shivers meander about your shoulder; but cheerful folks manage to draw their knees up and pass a very comfortable night. ~Marion Howard

Thursday, May 11, 2006

Office assistant

Rocket' jumps up on the paper cutter anytime someone walks past the door to the Den as he knows he will be petted if they see him there.

A taste of texture and color

I enjoy exploring the textures, shapes and colors of the plants in my garden with my camera as well as my eyes.

I have, for your viewing pleasure more pictures in my garden blog.

Thursday Eye Teaser

Praying rocks.

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Spring Fever

This from my friend Hostagirl.

We both have spring fever,
just like many others of you out there.

She dug the plot on Monday.
The soil was rich and fine,
She forgot to thaw out dinner
So we went out to dine...

She planted roses Tuesday
She says they are a must,
They really are quite lovely,
But she quite forgot to dust...

On Wednesday it was daises
They opened up with the sun,
All whites and pinks and yellows
But the laundry wasn't done...

The poppies came on Thursday
A bright and cheery red,
I guess she really was engrossed
She never made the bed...

It was violets on Friday
In colors she adores,
It never bothered her at all
All the crumbs upon the floors...

I hired a maid on Saturday
My week is now complete,
My wife can garden all she wants
The house will still be neat!

It's nearly lunchtime Sunday
And I cannot find the maid,
Oh NO! I don't believe it!
She's out there WITH THE SPADE!!!
author unknown

collage from Dave's collages

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

Napier earthquake

On February 3, 1931 the peaceful tranquillity of New Zealand’s Hawkes Bay region was shattered when the area was struck by the worst earthquake in New Zealand’s history. At 10:46 am on that summer’s day, the quake hit with a magnitude of 7.9 on the Richter scale. The epicentre of the quake was situated some 15 to 20 kilometers north of the two main centers in the region, Napier and Hastings. The quake lasted for two and a half minutes. The death toll was 258, 162 being in Napier, 93 in Hastings and 3 in the small township of Wairoa.

A fire swept through both towns immediately after the quake. The fire apparently started in a chemist’s shop in Napier, which was in close proximity to flammable liquids. The flames spread quickly and had, within hours, bridged the distance between Napier and Hastings. The Fire Department in Napier was at a loss to control the blaze as a result of losing their water supply. The water supply in Hastings, however, was still operable, allowing them to fight back against the fire. Still the flames spread and had soon spread further to the nearby township of Ahuriri.

The force of the earthquake destroyed many of the city’s famous landmarks. Chunks of the coastline were dislodged and thrown into the sea. Napier’s Bluff Hill, a popular tourist spot, was completely destroyed and thrown into the waters below. The upward thrust of the quake also managed to empty the waters of the Ahuriri Lagoon, a wide stretch of water a few kilometres from Napier. The result of this was that 9,000 acres of dry land were made available in a matter of minutes.

The long term effects on the Napier landscape were quite substantial. The whole area tilted upwards by about seven feet. 2230 hectares were raised to sea level. Most of the major buildings in the city were completely destroyed. Roads and communications acsoss the whole area were cut. It just so happened, however, that the Royal Navy Ship, HMS Veronica, was docked at the Port of Napier. So, it was by way of the Ship’s radio that the rest of New Zealand was notified of the calamity. People were afraid to enter their homes for days and found accommodations at the local Motor Camp or on the beach. Their were about 150 aftershocks in the 24 hours after the main shock. Over the next two weeks, there would be 525 such aftershocks.

Napier City has truly proved to be a phoenix rising from the ashes. Architects were brought into the city to plan a new city with a new look. Out went the staid Victorian look of former times and in came a modern new art deco style. The newest styles of the 1930’s were incorporated in the building designs, from Stripped Classical to Spanish Mission. But it was the Art Deco look that prevailed. The city’s brand new look was accentuated with by rows of palm trees and the unique Norfolk Island pine. Napier has since become famous as a little piece of European design down under.
pictures from

Tuesday Chuckle

Monday, May 08, 2006

Introducing ----Dragonfly

A couple of weeks ago I started receiving comments on my blog from Dragonfly. I was intrigued. There was something about the comments and the name Dragonfly. I had to know more about this person and where they were from.

After a few days, and comments back and forth on Keewee's corner I asked Dragonfly if they had a blog. No they did not.

To shorten the story, Dragonfly and I emailed each other sharing information. I discovered that Dragonfly lived in Switzerland and thought it would be interesting to have her as my guest blogger on Keewee’s corner if she was willing, and I am happy to say, she said yes.

Today I was excited to receive photos and descriptions from dragonfly which I am posting for your viewing pleasure.

Thank you Dragonfly.

From where we live in Basel, it’s a short walk downtown, this
picture shows a music shop and above - the "garden", which is
quite unique due to lack of garden space.

click on pictures for larger view

In the Heart of town we have the Rathaus - Government building,
striking in colour, with very old paintings on the walls.

There will be more wonderful pictures from Dragonfly in the future.

Sunday, May 07, 2006

The Carnival Of Recipes

Carnival of the Recipes is now available for your viewing pleasure:

This from The Common Room

"I can tell its spring for most of us, because we have plenty of delicious looking fruity goodness, not to mention the lamb, oh, the lamb, and the asparagus of sweet greenity, and much other deliciousness to please the palate of the most discriminating. Please try to take a look at all of them- many included photographs, interesting tidbits of information, and notices about contests, foodie events, and just Neat Stuff. I love the recipe carnival. It's better than a new cookbook every week because it's free, and unlike my cookbooks, I can never set the recipe carnival down on a hot burner and scorch it. All the participants have done a great job sharing a little bit of themselves with the rest of us."

Home from the range

The weather kept many shooters at home. There were seven iron sight shooters and six optical sight shooters. I shoot optical.

I am all bundled up against the cold wind and the few spots of rain, gritting my teeth and trying for that *pling* sound as lead hits steel. I am shooting a Beretta U22 Neos, probably for the last time at a match as the new gun Mr. C has bought for me will be here within the next few days.

I then have to practice everyday this week getting used to the feel of the new gun and the different positions of the magazine and slide release and the safety, as next weekend there is a match at the Kitsap range, and I prefer to look as though I know what I am doing.

There were quite a lot of *pling* sounds, but not as many as I was wanting to hear. Dang! I really wanted to shoot better than I did, but Mr. C reminded me that when the weather is crummy, just the better shooters seem to turn up at a match, so I was shooting against the best. I was fifth out of six shooters.

Mr. C did well, with first place in iron sight and first place in optical. We start out at 10 yards with 4 inch steel plates, then move back four stations with larger plates at each one.
We did have a fun time and I look forward to shooting my new gun soon.

Off to the range

Goodmorning all, this morning Mr.C and I are heading up the Island to Coupeville for a steel hanging plate match. I must say I am not all that enthusiastic. the weather has changed, and it is cold and windy with a light rain Blaaaah!
Mr. C has put a new sight on my Beretta and I am not used to it, so that will be a challenge. He does have another gun with a sight I am familiar with,I could use, so I will decide when we get to the range. I am also tired so it will make for an interesting day.
I will take my camera to get a few photos and post a report later on today.

Friday, May 05, 2006


The weather is warming up, it is time to sit outdoors with your friends and enjoy a drink, snacks and good conversation.

2 (8 oz.) pkgs. cream cheese, softened
1/2 c. salad dressing or mayo.
1/3 c. Parmesan cheese
10 crisply cooked bacon slices, crumbled
1/4 c. chopped green onion

Combine cream cheese and salad dressing, mixing until well blended. Add remaining ingredients; mix well. Chill. Form into cheese balls and decorate by rolling in chopped nuts before serving.