Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Turkey Preparation

My annual physical was at 8:30 this morning and it took an hour and a half! Dr. Burke is nothing if not thorough! He pronounced me healthy as a horse. Evidently my mobility problems are mostly caused by persistent nerve damage which is healing at its own slow pace. We had breakfast at the Green House Cafe, and then came home to meet Tim and Susie! We had a good visit, with ice cream and cookies to boot - kind of a nice combination!

The plumber showed up to try to fix the faucet in Dick's tub, which hasn't been working properly. We found out that the broken part isn't made any longer, and a hole will probably have to be cut in the wall to get access for replacing the old faucet.

Then it was time to cook the giblets, chop the onions, make the jello salad, and bake the pie. It's just going to be the two of us this year, but we're doing the whole bit - the turkey is just smaller, that's all. The table looks nice, and at Tom's they were selling beautiful roses for $7/dozen - who could resist that?

Tomorrow I want us to just enjoy the parades, the football, and the dinner.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Lloyd Carr

Lloyd Carr retired as Michigan head football coach this morning. He's been at the Univ. for 27 years, 13 as Head Coach. We're sorry to see him go but happy in the realization that he has many years ahead of him to enjoy living! Dick knew Lloyd when he taught and coached at Belleville many moons ago. Lloyd used to come to the annual End of the World party at Glen's sometimes. That was always memorable and fun. My best memory of Lloyd was years ago on I-75 we were heading north, and he passed us waving frantically to get our attention. He's a nice person. He helped us get our 4 seats together in the stadium - we used to have 2 and 2 separated by quite a few rows. We know that there are good things ahead for him.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

It Could Have Been Better

The only thing worse than losing to Ohio State in Columbus is losing to Ohio State at home in Michigan Stadium.

The only thing worse than losing to Ohio State at home is losing to Ohio State at home in the rain.

The only thing worse than losing to Ohio State at home in the rain is losing to Ohio State at home in the rain when the temperature is 38 degrees F.

The only thing worse than losing to Ohio State at home in the cold, cold rain is losing to Ohio State at home in the cold, cold rain and dropping your mittens into a puddle.

The only thing worse than losing to Ohio State at home in the cold, cold rain with wet, wet mittens is losing to Ohio State at home in the cold, cold rain with wet, wet mittens and having your team play so poorly.

We were cold, we were wet, we were so disappointed - it was dismal.
Here's an excerpt from a Maryland Elementary School Talent Show:
I'll bet our team could have beaten their team!

U-M Falls to Ohio State in Big Ten Championship Game
On a cold, wet afternoon at Michigan Stadium, the No. 23 Michigan football team dropped a 14-3 decision to No. 7 Ohio State on Saturday, Nov. 17, in a contest that decided the Big Ten's outright champion of 2007. The Wolverines took an early 3-0 lead on K.C. Lopata's 33-yard field goal toward the end of the first quarter, but Ohio State, behind Chris Well's 222 yards rushing, scored touchdowns in the second and third quarters and held the Wolverines to 91 net yards. Tim Jamison had three tackles for loss to pace the U-M defense.

Luckily, Resourceful Richard had packed hand warmers, ponchos and a blanket so that we were not totally drenched, we were merely soggy and dripping. When I put my head down, water from my poncho hood ran down onto my knees. Did I mention that it was cold? I was wearing four layers on top and two layers on my legs, and double socks. At 12:25 to go in the 4th quarter I was chilled through and it was only the shame of it all that prevented my leaving early.

Once it was over and we were back in the car, we luxuriated in dry layers of clothing, heated seats, and the blessed heater. Thank you, Subaru.

When we went back after the tickets on Friday morning we should have stayed home. Oh, but then we wouldn't have seen Reiko and her boys, so forget it.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Geodetic Benchmarks

The day began with a checkup for Dick at Dr. Recchia's office - an echo-cardiogram. After he passed his test, we went out to breakfast at the Omelette Shoppe - my favorite.

Then the fun began - we did Rathergohiking's 9-stage multi-cache (Geodetic Benchmarks) which involves driving around Traverse City! What could be better! It was a very enjoyable adventure on a beautiful, though very windy, day.

Afterwards, we went shopping at Toys R Us for a baby shower for a very special baby! How much fun is that? We haven't been anywhere near a Toys R Us for about 2 years - so we got some surprises for Ethan and Jet, too.

At home, we began winterizing the Golf Car (Minnehaha) by putting stabil in the gas tank and driving it around. Our neighbor even had the nerve to turn down a ride!

Our TiVo is still on the fritz - we've ordered an adapter which will use our Airport instead of our phone line. Let's hope that's the solution.

Monday, November 12, 2007

We've Found a Cache in All of Michigan !

Dick figured out how to log the 83 Counties of Michigan cache - evidently you get credit for three - the Upper, the Lower, and the whole State. Here's Dick's log:

11/12/2007 You found Linda's Cache all of Michigan
We won't repeat the stories we related in our other posts. We began Geocaching in June of '03 with no goals in mind other than to explore the various facets of the game. Our first find was a micro. On our second outing we discovered a virtual as well as the true ammo can in the woods. We placed our first cache, a multi involving Round Barns in October. When he logged it, ABX Guy informed us about Reverse Caches. In January of 2004 we attended the "Convergence", our first event cache.
Our first Geocaching "goal" was to average one find a day for the first year. In order to do that we farmed the reverse cache pages and logged a few from home or after a short drive. They kept us on the lookout for unusual features. Of course we kept after the local caches as well. We learned to love the challenge of Whitard's Al Quacka and puzzle caches. While pursuing an Al Quacka cache that spring, we met the Dino Duo and formed a friendship that has expanded beyond caching.
In July of '05, we met Dar and Linda of Photo Bug 2. He told us of a cache where you got credit if you found caches in each of Michigan's 83 counties. We saw it as an interesting concept but could not comprehend how one would tabulate finds on a county by county basis.
I guess we just stumbled onto our next goal which was to reach 1000. We were at 998 and decided to do two events in one day, on June 6 2006, just days before our 3rd caching anniversary, we attended "Go Get Outdoors" at Interlochen State Park followed by "Something Twisted This Way Comes" which was put on by Sandrich.
This past spring, we stumbled upon the website "It's not about the numbers" and figured out how to load our finds. The result was a map that showed what we had to do. Our next goal was clear, color our map a solid blue. In the fall, when we saw that the Wolverines had 6 home games in the first 7 weeks, we decided to rent an apartment in Ann Arbor and save the 500 mile round trips. Living down there gave us the time to finish off our Lower Peninsula counties. One final northern run in October and we were finished. The only challenge left was to provide our information to Linda. With some help and coaching we got that job done but I'd rather hike a couple of miles to find a cache.
We have thoroughly enjoyed our first four years of this activity. We have met some great people and enjoyed their stories. We are constantly being impressed at the time and creative effort that some folks put into their cache containers and placements. We have been taken down some exciting roads, some we probably should not have attempted but what the heck. We have accumulated some scratches and dents, even put a few on the cachemobile, but nothing serious. Best of all, we've had fun! Lots of stories, lots of laughs. Our thanks go out to all those who've placed tupperware out there for us to find and to those we've met and shared good times with along the way.
What's next? Well there are 50 states and the District of Columbia. We've got 16 down, only 35 to go.

Here are our Stats from the website "It's Not About The Numbers":
Stats for basswoodbend
Total: 1539 finds on 1537 unique caches (List Multiple Finds)

Total days since first find: 1614 - Overall find Rate: 0.95/day, 6.68/week

Total days with a find: 431 (Every 3.7 days or 26.7% of your total days) - Average finds per caching day: 3.57

Best day: 4/08/06 - 26 finds

Most consecutive days with a find: 10 from 3/03/07 to 3/12/07

Longest caching drought: 44 days from 6/18/07 to 7/31/07

Average total cache difficulty: 1.61 - Average total terrain rating: 1.52

Average physical cache difficulty: 1.68 - Average physical terrain rating: 1.58 (Traditional, Multi, Unknown, Project APE, Letterbox)

Approximate cache-to-cache distance: 41205.91 miles (66314.48 kilometres) (Excludes locationless and known traveling caches)

Active Caches: 1028 of the caches you've found are still active (66.9%)

Average log size: 76.2 words - Biggest log: 511 words - Shortest log: 0 word - Number of one-word logs: 1

More stats:

Milestone Cache Date Found Days Since Previous Milestone
1 Lone Pine Micro (Log) 6/15/03
100 The Queen City (Log) 11/03/03 141
200 Old Historic Log Cabins (Log) 1/25/04 83
300 Clio Veteran's Memorial Park (Log) 5/06/04 101
400 Micro Adventure (Log) 8/17/04 103
500 Old Friends (Log) 1/09/05 145
600 Boughey (Log) 5/07/05 117
700 Nate & Kaye's Cache (Log) 8/23/05 108
800 Life's a beach in Lake City (Log) 12/03/05 102
900 Toll Gate (Log) 4/08/06 125
1000 Something Twisted This Way Comes... (Log) 6/10/06 63
1100 MLT -- Hatton (Log) 10/08/06 120
1200 The House That Barney Built (Log) 3/06/07 149
1300 Hanging around Hayes Twp Park (Log) 6/10/07 95
1400 Podunk Michigan (Log) 9/18/07 100
1500 Stockade (1815-1817) (Log) 10/10/07 22
Based on your overall rate of 0.95 finds per day, you'll find number 1600 around 1/17/08 and the big 2000 around 3/13/09. However, over the past few months, your find rate has actually been 2.23 finds per day. Based on that, you'll find number 1600 around 12/11/07 and your 2000th around 6/07/08.

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Maize and Blue Face-full

A football game was played Saturday afternoon over in Madison. Two well-known Big Ten teams played. A lot of people probably really enjoyed that game. I won't mention any names (roger). The Michigan team really got a spanking of the worst kind. They took it on the chin. They didn't need to send out for apples, because the Badgers handed them their lunch. It was dismal, if you're Faithful. It was the kind of game that you knew intuitively that you were going to lose, but then again, hope springs eternal. Oh well.

Michigan Handed First Conference Defeat at Wisconsin
MADISON, Wis. -- The No. 13-ranked University of Michigan football team was unable to remain unbeaten in Big Ten play, suffering a 37-21 loss at Wisconsin Saturday (Nov. 10) before 82,352 fans at Camp Randall Stadium. The Wolverines (8-3, 6-1 Big Ten) played without the services of senior tailback Mike Hart (Syracuse, N.Y./Onondaga Central HS), and senior quarterback Chad Henne (Wyomissing, Pa./Wilson HS) left after the first two offensive possessions.

Junior wide receiver Mario Manningham (Warren, Ohio/Warren G. Harding HS) led the offense with his NCAA-leading sixth consecutive 100-yard receiving game, catching three passes for 113 yards and two touchdowns. He has scored receiving touchdowns in six straight games, and his 97-yard touchdown catch in the fourth quarter is the longest offensive play in school history.

Freshman quarterback Ryan Mallett (Texarkana, Ark./Texarkana [Texas] HS) completed 11-of-36 passes for 245 yards and matched his career high with three passing touchdowns. Senior wide receiver Adrian Arrington (Cedar Rapids, Iowa/Washington HS) caught a team-best seven passes for 101 yards and one touchdown.

Junior nose tackle Terrance Taylor (Muskegon, Mich./Muskegon HS) led the defense with a career-high nine tackles. Senior safety Jamar Adams (Charlotte, N.C./Butler HS) also chipped in nine stops in the game.

It fell to Michigan State to uphold the honor of the State of Michigan by whaling on Purdue in a most determined fashion. Way to Go Green.

After the Big Game, which left us Black and Blue, Gary and Donna (CoyChev) and Shawn and Meesa (Koda) came over for ice cream and cookies. It was a good idea to get our minds off football !! We discussed caching, caches, placing caches, finding caches, cache history, personal history, job-seeking, recipes, geocaching politics (now there's a hot topic), elderly mothers, cool parents, geocoins, path tags and I don't know what all. It was a good way to end the day.

Friday, November 09, 2007

Cousin Jenny's

We met Tim and Susie (DinoDuo) at Cousin Jenny's for lunch. It's a fun place - especially when the lunch crowd clears out! The pasties there are much better than what you get in the UP - the yooper pasties tend to be a little bit dry. These were really good, and they serve lots of gravy on the side, which I appreciated. Dick and I decided that the Cornish pasties that we got in Cornwall were even better, though! We gave Tim and Susie the 3,000th Find coin that Dick ordered and had engraved. It turned out really well, and I think they liked it.

The 3 of them went geocaching after lunch, but I came home and played on the computer! Everybody needs a hobby :)

Saturday, November 03, 2007

The State Game

Another momentous Michigan=Michigan State football game is now history. It was a hard-fought nail-biter of a game. State led for a long time, but Michigan somehow pulled a victory out of the hat. Wow - it was exciting! This from mgoblue:

Henne's Four TD Passes Power Football Past Spartans
In the 100th meeting between Michigan and Michigan State on the gridiron, U-M quarterback Chad Henne threw four touchdown passes, including the game-winner to Mario Manningham with 2:28 left in the contest, to lead the 15th-ranked Wolverines to a 28-24 victory Saturday, Nov. 3, in East Lansing, Mich. Michigan trailed 24-14 with less than seven minutes to play, but Henne engineered scoring drives of 79 and 65 yards for the comeback win. Jamar Adams and Obi Ezeh paced the defense with 14 and 13 tackles, respectively

Both Henne and Hart played with injuries. I remember the day when college kids sat out the games when they were injured. Now it seems that they just get taped up or something and play anyway. Michael sat out for most of the second half. I think Chad sat out for one or two plays. I certainly hope that neither of them is permanently damaged in any way. Sure, it's great to win the football game, but it shouldn't be necessary for these young men to sacrifice their well-being for a victory.

Friday, November 02, 2007

The Week That Was

Watching the Minnesota game was just about as much fun you can have when you're chilly and a little bit wet! The team played very well in the last 3 quarters after getting off to a rocky start.

Big days from Brandon Minor and Mario Manningham helped the No. 19 Michigan football team overcome an early deficit to retain the Little Brown Jug with a 34-10 win over Minnesota on Saturday, Oct. 27, in Michigan Stadium. Minor rushed for a career-high 157 yards and one touchdown, while Manningham went over 100 yards receiving for the fourth game in a row, catching five balls for 162 yards and a TD. Carlos Brown added 132 yards and two TDs on the ground, and Ryan Mallett threw for a career-best 233 yards.

The headline for this article on mgoblue was Minor, Manningham Manuever Michigan Past Minnesota - I'm thinking that they really scratched their heads trying to come up with another word that started with M! Justin and Heather were there, and they're going to use our Ohio State tickets too. They're great seatmates.

We had a great weekend staying with Sniders - it's always fun hearing about their kids and grandkids, not to mention planning our cruise to Scandinavia in May!

Dick has been busy in the yard, getting it ready for winter....blowing and mowing, fertilizing, putting covers on the outdoor furniture, winterizing the tractors and stuff, and trying to get the pontoon boat repaired and winterized.

I'm cleaning out my room one drawer at a time - sending stuff to Goodwill, ordering Christmas gifts and new shoes, having back spasms and spending a whole day in bed on muscle relaxers, and trying out new recipes. One recipe was a disaster, one was quite good, and one was for pea soup with barley and ham. (It would have been better with kielbasa.)

Tom survived the fires in San Diego - just one of his colleagues lost his home, and Cymer wasn't damaged - so things could have been much worse. I think the fires are all contained by now.

Tomorrow's game with Mich. State is at 3:30 p.m. I think it could go either way depending on who is hurt, suspended, or benched. You never can tell. Go Blue.