Things are unstable. It makes me nervous. I think about "things" way too much these days. I hate it. Just a few months ago I was thinking that I was doing pretty good. That I'd gotten myself into a pretty good place, a little savings, some good interest rates on my credit cards, a new car that I could I think, I need a bigger savings account and I need to clean off those credit cards just in case!

I know I'm not in a position to change the way our economy is functioning and that too makes me nervous. I have no control over what will happen.

I'm a control freak. I don't like it when I can't change the outcome.

The yo-yo stock market baffles me. One day we're up, the next we're down. Admittedly I am not a Wall Street expert, but the whole thing is so messy and discombobulated that it makes me shiver to think about it. The trading incites panic and a panicky public is scary.

Part of me wants to start hiding money under my mattress. Maybe I should stock my pantry? Of course I realize that I panic easily and that I must try to stay rational as I watch the US dollar tank. I know my bank, which was just bought out by a larger bank, is insured by the FDIC. That's great, except the FDIC was created to secure a few banks with short terms loans. Right now they are being pushed to near capacity and the loans are going to be longer term. Freaks me out a bit.

I was in Mexico last week. Lowest exchange rate I've ever witnessed there. I've been four times, in for different years. It wasn't horrible, but it wasn't what I remember.

I'm going to mind my p's and q's and try not to think about what could happen. I have a crazy imagination that borders on unhealthy when I worry.

I will have to find other things for my brain to focus on. Maybe I'll write that book I've always wanted to...

On the move!

Harvest is almost here and that means work is gearing up for the busiest time of our year! On top of normal harvest craziness we're currently moving our entire production facility to the new winery! The place is a mad house to say the least.

While everyone is really excited about the new winery it is a bit sad to watch things slowly move out of the building and get loaded up onto trucks. The historic winery will feel a bit empty I think, I'm not sure how I feel about that, and I suspect when I come home from vacation week after next to find a completely empty space I will feel a bit lost. If you've ever read any of my other harvest blogs you know that the winery comes alive this time of year, and while I'll still get to see and be a part of some of it, it won't be a constant as it has been in years past.

I've taken some pictures in the last few days, trying to document as much as I can. They really don't do any justice to the mass force and brute strength it takes to pull some of this off. Plus a lot of it's very delicate work. I can't say enough about our crew, they amaze me day after day. I can see the stress and fatigue starting to show on their faces but they keep a good attitude no matter what.

The winery tank room last week

The tank room today

Moving a tank, two forklifts and a pallet jack at a time!

Tanks in motion

Crush pad being used for barrel storage, and the grapes that will eventually see the inside of a barrel.

Grapes are getting ripe, tanks and barrels are moving, harvest interns are arriving. It's time to make some wine people! We start picking next week and I'll keep you updated when I get home from Mexico.

Oh did I mention that I'm going to Mexico? Yeah I am, on Sunday, for a week. I will have a drink for all of you :)

toilets, turtles, harry potter and goodnight moon...

...that's a short description of my evening last night. I got to babysit the munchkins while Trish and Justin went to dinner and a movie.

When I got there I was a little surprised to see Jake running around the house sans diaper and pants. Of course it all made sense when he promptly sat down on his brand new potty. I guess he asked for it all on his own, sounds like every mom's dream to me! Thankfully before Trish left she convinced hip to put his diaper back on. Auntie's are made to spoil children rotten and change an occasional diaper, not empty out potty's!

He's just so proud of himself I had to take a picture. He doesn't quite understand what he's supposed to do once he's sitting on it, but he has so much enthusiasm it just doesn't matter at the moment.

KayLee likes the potty, but I wouldn't say she's as gung-ho as Jaker. She really just likes to ware the little cushioned seat as a bracelet. Oh course that sends Jake on a mission to "fix" his toilet. Pretty darn cute all around.

After playing with the new toilet, reading a few books, jumping on the bed, playing with a turtley awesome stuffed turtle, and trying on everyone elses shoes it was time to put them to bed, so we had bottles, and read Goodnight Moon. Of course then we had to say goodnight to everything in the house. But they went down no problems and I felt succesful! Not an easy feat with 2 year old twins.

Almost time for bed!

Once the twins we down for the count I finally got to spend some one on one time with Nathan, who had been very good while his siblings were still up and running around the house. In fact there are no pictures of him because he was being so good at entertaining himself in other parts of the house.

He and I read a chapter to Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets just before bed time. It was a whole different experience for me to read that to a child. He was so enthralled and excited. It made me want to reread the entire series though his eyes. I've missed the magic of Harry, Hermione, Ron and Hagrid!

All in all it was a good night, munchkin snuggles and one on one time with Nathan!


So Tom Brady is out with a knee injury that will require surgery. A crushing blow to Patriot fans, and many Fantasy Football owners, my Scottie included – on both counts. It’s not the end of the world, in fact if any athlete is motivated to return in the best shape ever, it’s Brady. It’s also football, not a life changing event for me, but still a hard pill to swallow. We spend a lot of time watching and cheering Brady and the Pats. I’m hopeful for Cassell who stepped in like a champ and brought us a victory. I’m confident the other players, who work so well as a team will continue to do so, but it’s still sad news for a player who commits fully.

I’ve been reading a lot of coverage on this and the poor sportsmanship of some people is beyond me. Apparently at the ESPN Sport Zone in Manhattan, the entire bar cheered when he went down. When it became obvious that it was a serious injury message boards all over the internet praised the KC player who took him out, and laughed and joked about Brady all while chanting that he deserved it. Say what?

Now I know football is a rough sport. Heck the injured list after yesterday’s games grew quite a bit, but no one deserves to have a career threatening injury. There are teams I hate, for example the NY Yankees, but I would never cheer Jeter or Damon going out of the game with a horrible injury. I don’t like the Giants or the Colts, but you don’t hear me wishing a fractured leg for either Manning boy. I will admit that on occasion I’ve wished for Peyton to get a thump and a bruise on his forehead just because I’m so sick of seeing it in every commercial, but I don’t wish him pain and I certainly wouldn’t want him to suffer and scream on the field. And I wouldn’t gloat to fans of those teams that I was going to take the championship. Some of the things I’ve been reading are pretty vile. Realizing I’m a tad bit sensitive to the whole mess I think I need to step away from it, I’m just really disheartened that people would actually wish harm on a player so their team can benefit.

And then there are things that put everything in perspective. While we were bemoaning our fates as football fans, our good friends were making the choice to put down a beloved dog. Marble was a super cool wolf/Sheppard mix and I had the pleasure of baby sitting him on a few occasions. Unfortunately he had deteriorated with age and it was time to end his suffering. It’s such a horrible choice to make and I know that selfishly a pet owner wants to hold onto this family member who has brought countless hours of joy into a home. On the other hand, you love that pet enough to know that they are suffering and you have the power to relive that.

I know that Marble is in dog heaven chasing after opossums and squirrels and eating all the potato chips and chicken he can find. I only hope that his owner, Bruce, finds some comfort in the days to come. Personally I would be a wreck if I had to put Olivia down. There is a special level of comfort that a fluffy dog or cat provides. It’s a connection not shared with other humans, and I know that connection runs very deep for owners.

* sigh *

If only we could just start Sunday over and end up with a better outcome for everyone.

Marble 1995-2008

Are you ready for some football??

It's that time of year!

Season starts today! Giants are playing...we hate them. Sunday is the fun day!

From now until Februaury I'll be spending my Sundays, and some Mondays sitting on a couch, hat and t-shirt on, stuffing my face with all sorts of horrible finger foods, and yelling at the TV! I love this time of year!

Growing up I was a baseball fan. I didn't learn to love football until I married a football fan and sat through game, after game, after game. I finally got tired of not knowing what was going on so over the last few years I've paid attention and adopted Scott's team. I guess I could have picked my childhood team the 49ers but we already argue about politics so adding football to the mix didn't seem prudent.

I'm now a proud Patriot fan! I just got lucky that they are so good now. When Scott picked them as a kid, more then fifteen years ago he picked them because they weren't the Seahawks. He suffered with them through many not so good seasons. But now we have the good stuff...

* happy sigh * I am so ready for this! I even have a new shirt on the way. It will be here just in time for next weekends game. Which should be awesome. Pat's are playing. Steelers are playing. Chargers are playing. Dolphins are playing. Not each other, but that's who all our friends root for and we plan to be very loud at what ever sports bar we make it to.

Teddy Bruschi I heart you! Tom Brady you're not so bad yourself! Go Pats!

We Love Labor Day Weekend

Scott and I had an rare weekend. Usually we're running around town, busy with friends or family, but this weekend we were the only people in town so we decided to take some mini adventures of our own.

Day 1 - Hood River
We loooooove Hood River. If we could live there I think we would. Maybe someday we'll retire there.

Scott windsurfed for a few hours and then we walked around the town.

Hitting the road!
Scott sailing with the wildlife

Day 2 - Oregon State Fair

I love fairs! I adore them. I used to go to fairs in Wisconsin and Illinois when I was little and I loved the animals, the food, the shows, all of it. So this year when Scott agreed to take me I was ecstatic! I had the mandatory corn dog, some curly fries, and a bag of cotton candy that I just finished eating today. We got rained on, but the storm passed and it was back to exploring! There were so many sweet bunnies, and the cows are so fun. I miss spending time with animals like that.

We watched some kids try to ride sheep. Hilarious! Poor kids, they were doomed from the start, but it was great entertainment for the adults. It reminded me of the baby pigs they would race in Wisconsin. They named them Tammy Faye Bacon and Arnold Swartzenhogger....hee hee

I can't wait to go back next year!!

The aerial tram
Sweet BunnyFried goodness....mmmmmm