Skip to main content


Mon Sep 08, 2014 at 07:31 AM PDT

GUSing AWOL

by Homers24

GUS (Gave Up Smoking) is a community support diary for Kossacks in the midst of quitting smoking. Any supportive comments, suggestions or positive distractions are appreciated. We avoid discussion of political issues. If you are quitting or even thinking about quitting, please -- join us! GUS Library at dKosopedia is organically evolving, and stocked with free-range information: quit-smoking links, helpful GUS diary writing tips, and the GUS buddy list.
Sorry I've been AWOL on my scheduled diaries the past few weeks. I've been on the run and to be honest the rest of the month doesn't look too good for keeping my schedule either. Its just that time of the year where I've got a lot of activities that when it comes right down to it I don't even think twice; I just go.

And to be even more honest I haven't been doing all that good on not smoking either and that's probably the last thing I want to talk about.

But I can give you an example of it.

One thing I had to get geared up for and cancelled at least a couple diaries was the Snowy Range Music Festival right outside of Relapse City with the full fledged Alibi Crew. Its an annual event over Labor Day Weekend featuring mostly the Blues and as close as you're going to get to Woodstock in Wyoming.

Its also more like two festivals in one. First there is the Snowy Range Music Festival. It consists of three different stages. Starts about 4 pm Friday night and runs (pretty much non-stop) through Sunday night. And the one question veterans of the festival never ask is who's playing. Because it doesn't matter. All of the bands and performers are going to be good, some of them great, and some the likes of which you might not have ever seen before. The music plays non-stop from about noon to about 10 pm and then after that is what they call the "after party" which might be the best show of all. Because the "after party" is more of a jam session hosted by one of the bands but open to anyone willing to get up there and blow.

Then there is the second aspect of "festival" which we call "camp Alibi" and is where we stay the rest of the time. And when I say camp I mean that literally with one major plus. It is a camp in that the Alibi Crew actually sets up tents and sleeping bags (and a cot for my old bones) and we just stay there from Thursday (when they actually set up camp) until Monday morning when we break camp with festival still ringing in our ears. But the plus side is its kind of the end of the season for the Alibi Crew and the Alibi Pub (hence the name of the Alibi  crew) and the owners of the Alibi Pub host kind of a customer appreciation end of summer party and we basically have an overstocked bar on wheels. And since I'm on such an honesty kick Camp Alibi is not one of those places where we drink responsibly. Oh no. Its more like sipping Ale, and an occasional shot of Crown Royal, with a Fireball chaser, until the term "shit-faced" comes to mind and its time to stagger off to your tent.

Then the next morning we get up and do it all over again including attending things like harmonica lessons where this year in addition to the Blues experts teaching the class they were actually handing out free harmonicas as well which I don't think you can beat at any other festivals I've been to.

Three days of that, and its not like we had to worry about crappy weather as in wind, rain, and cold temperatures. We could count on it and got it. So, when as I say as close as you can get to Woodstock in Wyoming that was true right down to the rain and the mud. But it was a small price to pay and it didn't last long before it was beautiful again.

And during those times I was seeing things like this. This is Otis Taylor Band playing in Barcelona a few months ago but I saw it live at festival. But even if you don't look at it though there's a guitar player named Taylor Scott (on the right) and the first time I saw him at festival a few years ago he was literally a kid. As in teenager. And look at him now on a world tour with Otis Taylor and Anne Harris (on the fiddle.)

http://www.youtube.com/...

But Taylor Scott was just one of the "kids" performing at festival. Another was Nic Clark who the first time I saw him he was also a kid playing with Scott in  "Another Kind of Magick." And I've had the privilege of watching these semi-local kids grow up around this festival which actually only exists because of the vision of one man, Carl Gustophsib, and what was at one time another semi local band called Blind Dog Smokin.

And out of that grows these kids until its Taylor and Nic singing about being "Just Kids."

http://www.youtube.com/...

That may be the most amazing thing about festival to me because over the years its one thing to see Dr. John, Canned Heat,  Huey Lewis and the News, Macy Gray, Travis Tritt and stars like that but it seems so much more rewarding to see their rivals develop right before my eyes. Or I should say at least in my eyes.

And then if that isn't bad enough there's always just falling in love again .... sort of at least because I ran into something as amazing as Anne Harris which led me to Gravity and Faith.

http://www.youtube.com/...

Because you see I still have not mastered things like taking great pictures and posting them here. Or have a mastery of excellent recipes. These are my pictures and my best recipe is this is how I measure to make sure I have not died until I am dead.

And next up (I hope I'm not offending too many people here) is hunting camp. Where I don't even know when we are really leaving nor when we will be back. Except it will have to be by at least the 23rd because then I have a babysitting gig coming up in Relapse City again.

So count me as totally unreliable and if that's a good enough reason to replace me I'd be the first to second that motion. But short of that I don't know when we will see each other again.

So you've had some experience with the effects of smoking, and want to write a GUS diary or host an open thread? Please sign up in the Butt Can (Tip Jar), and name the day and time that works for you (AM, PM, late-night, early-bird...) How to write a GUS diary the easy way.
Continue Reading

Mon Aug 25, 2014 at 08:07 AM PDT

Good GUSing Morning

by Homers24

GUS (Gave Up Smoking) is a community support diary for Kossacks in the midst of quitting smoking. Any supportive comments, suggestions or positive distractions are appreciated. We avoid discussion of political issues. If you are quitting or even thinking about quitting, please -- join us! GUS Library at dKosopedia is organically evolving, and stocked with free-range information: quit-smoking links, helpful GUS diary writing tips, and the GUS buddy list.
Wherever and however that may be in your own reality at this moment.

Because there are those two aspects. The perception (and/or spin) and the reality.

Its like when I was cowboying when I was a young teen and shared a sheep-wagon with another cowboy and even though we called ourselves cowboys we were mostly herding sheep.

And even though we had to share this sheep wagon with nothing but a wood burning stove and a gas lantern its not like we were detached from the modern world. Not at all. In fact we were actually on the grid so to speak because we had a battery operated, transistor radio. That was the internet of our day and as long as we didn't play it too many hours a day or worse forget it was even on and run down the batteries we were connected.

Except, that when we got up in the morning we might have been connected but that meant even though our big transistor radio had like 287 channels, we were connected to exactly two local AM stations and only one of them came in good enough to hear in the morning. And so every morning when we were cooking and/or eating breakfast we would hear Captain Happy start his show with. GOOD MORNING!!! AND IT IS ANOTHER BEAUTIFUL DAY IN ENCANA COUNTY!!!

Which was great until you looked outside every morning and guess what? It wasn't always a beautiful day in ECANA County. In fact sometimes it was a really crappy day in ECANA County with rain and cold and wind  and misery because it didn't matter what Captain Happy said; we were still going to have to go out into it anyway.

But when I pitched a fit to Bobby about that one morning he was not all that impressed. As Bobby pointed out Captain Happy had been saying that same thing every morning for decades and a person really had to see it on a 40 below morning with a 10 mph wind before one could actually lodge a legitimate complaint of just how far Captain Happy was detached from reality on any given morning.

Never the less its something that has always stayed with me ever since then for a couple of reasons. One being people, even people who are supposed to be in the news and/or information business, will tell you everything from wishful thinking to downright false propaganda including its a beautiful day just because they are trying to promote someplace just because they are there.

But the other is how much of our life if dependent on perception both inside and outside of us. For instance it is actually a beautiful day in ENCANA county this morning. Its bright and shiny, and we are just coming off a couple days of good soaking rain that just seemed to cleanse the country and breath new life into everything. It is in reality a beautiful day where I'm at and that is also my inner perception of the whole world.

I'm not smoking, I slept in, everyone in the family is great, I've only got a few minor chores to do today, and as Bob Dylan once wrote there are no fences facing. So I can honestly say GOOD MORNING; AND ITS A BEAUTIFUL DAY IN ENCANA COUNTY.

And I can only hope the same is true for the rest of us GUSers this morning.

So you've had some experience with the effects of smoking, and want to write a GUS diary or host an open thread? Please sign up in the Butt Can (Tip Jar), and name the day and time that works for you (AM, PM, late-night, early-bird...) How to write a GUS diary the easy way.
Continue Reading

Wed Aug 20, 2014 at 07:57 AM PDT

GUS: Where Did Summer Go?

by Homers24

   GUS (Gave Up Smoking) is a community support diary for Kossacks in the midst of quitting smoking. Any supportive comments, suggestions or positive distractions are appreciated. If you are quitting or thinking of quitting, please -- join us!  We kindly ask that politics be left out.  

      You can also click the GUS tag to view all diary posts, or access the GUS Library at dKosopedia for a great list of stop-smoking links. Check it out! GUS library.

        A message to ALL quitters. You don't have to avoid GUS if you have a failed quit.  We won't give you a bad time and we consider the failed quits as "practice" for the real quit.

        Quit Keeper widget which is an outstanding aid for those beginning the difficult path to quitting.  It lets you know how long you haven't smoked, how many cigs you haven't smoked, how much money you've saved.

       Quit Smoking Counter    h/tGDbot.  For those of you who have had a problem with Quit Keeper or want a different counter!

Ok I'm sitting here this morning not smoking (again) but now all of a sudden having to wonder; where did summer go?

Which of course isn't reality because summer is still here with the heat and everything else but on the other hand its the first day of school out where we live and to me that has always been the official end of summer ever since I was a kid. Except actually when I was a kid I considered it more like the end of the world.

And while its not quite that dramatic now it still has that sort of feel to it because my wife has worked at the school as a para-educator for more than 25 years and so I'm back to being alone all day with a few more chores to do. And some how that always sets up some minor inner conflicts for me.

Which is rather strange. On the one hand I love my wife and the companionship we have in the summer which we try to leave open and spontaneous so we can generally do what we want to do at the spur of the moment. On the other hand though I also have to admit part of me likes having the house to myself where I can do just about everything I feel like without considering anyone else. There is just a minor level of freedom for me in that.

Of course the other side of the coin is I do have a few more household chores to do on a daily basis because we more or less divide them when we are both home during the summer. But since I'm retired and home all day during the school year it only seems fair that I do more work at home since my wife is at work all day.

And I assure you (or probably more accurately many of you would assure me) it is nothing major. Just wash and put away what few dishes we have, vacuum and dust, mop the floors and clean the bathrooms, perhaps wash and dry a few selected loads of clothes (very selected because my wife doesn't trust me with much more than towels, blue jeans, and MY underwear) and do the watering in the yard, which actually seems hardest to me.

Its the watering that not only seems hardest but also most daunting. Hardest because for my wife at least the water must be set just right hitting every square inch of the lawn, the flower beds, and the garden while at the same time not watering anything else outside the yard. And daunting because it also must be watered evenly which means I have to remember I'm watering and change the water about every half hour. All that seems effortless for my wife but I swear sometimes it takes me half an hour to get the water set just right and then its time to move it again and some parts aren't watered evenly (especially if I happen to forget it, which happens sometimes). And even though my wife never says anything I believe when she gets home she can take one look and she can tell if everything has been watered just right.

All this is very trivial I know but that seems to be most all my life these days. Just a series of mostly enjoyable trivialities which certainly makes me question why I even agreed to write diaries for GUS when in my reality I don't really have much to say and am more or less just watching to river flow to paraphrase Bob Dylan.

But be that as it may I better get this one posted, and get the GUS thread open, and of course get the water started because as much as I hoped for rain it does no look like its going to save me.

Continue Reading

Mon Aug 18, 2014 at 07:51 AM PDT

That GUSing Andy Frasco

by Homers24

Its all his fault.

Ok that's a lie. I've got nobody to blame but myself. But after a slip about two weeks ago where I smoked cigarettes when my daughter had to go into the hospital I don't have an excuse this time. In fact I've got less than no excuse. I was supposed to be prepared after all the advice and tips I got after my last slip and I thought I was.

But once Andy Frasco started playing in the open air park. And once I got to dancing. And then once I got about three pale ales in me I jumped off he wagon and joined the smokers again.

I'm not smoking today and don't intend to but then I didn't intend smoke ever again so we will actually have to see what this day brings and discuss those possibilities at great length today if anybody wants to because otherwise that's all I've got.

PS Access to the GUS Library is being denied right now so I'll get the GUS thread open now and try to post the other GUS information later.

Continue Reading

Wed Aug 13, 2014 at 08:01 AM PDT

GUS: Wednesday Open Thread

by Homers24

GUS (Gave Up Smoking) is a community support diary for Kossacks in the midst of quitting smoking. Any supportive comments, suggestions or positive distractions are appreciated. We avoid discussion of political issues. If you are quitting or even thinking about quitting, please -- join us! GUS Library at dKosopedia is organically evolving, and stocked with free-range information: quit-smoking links, helpful GUS diary writing tips, and the GUS buddy list.
Sorry I'm late getting this open this morning and I obviously don't have a diary anyway. But what the hell. The floor is open. Let's see what the other GUSers are up this morning.
So you've had some experience with the effects of smoking, and want to write a GUS diary or host an open thread? Please sign up in the Butt Can (Tip Jar), and name the day and time that works for you (AM, PM, late-night, early-bird...) How to write a GUS diary the easy way.
Continue Reading

Tue Aug 12, 2014 at 07:47 AM PDT

GUS:Tuesday Morning Open Thread

by Homers24

GUS (Gave Up Smoking) is a community support diary for Kossacks in the midst of quitting smoking. Any supportive comments, suggestions or positive distractions are appreciated. We avoid discussion of political issues. If you are quitting or even thinking about quitting, please -- join us! GUS Library at dKosopedia is organically evolving, and stocked with free-range information: quit-smoking links, helpful GUS diary writing tips, and the GUS buddy list.
Morning GUSers. Gchaucer2  is out of town this morning so I'm just going to throw an open thread out here and see if there are any GUSers or wanna be GUSers who want to contribute.

As for me we got good news on my daughter's illness so all is good with me this morning.

So you've had some experience with the effects of smoking, and want to write a GUS diary or host an open thread? Please sign up in the Butt Can (Tip Jar), and name the day and time that works for you (AM, PM, late-night, early-bird...) How to write a GUS diary the easy way.
Continue Reading

Mon Aug 11, 2014 at 07:22 AM PDT

GUSing Again

by Homers24

GUS (Gave Up Smoking) is a community support diary for Kossacks in the midst of quitting smoking. Any supportive comments, suggestions or positive distractions are appreciated. We avoid discussion of political issues. If you are quitting or even thinking about quitting, please -- join us! GUS Library at dKosopedia is organically evolving, and stocked with free-range information: quit-smoking links, helpful GUS diary writing tips, and the GUS buddy list.
The first thing I want to say is you GUSers are amazing and thank you so much for all the support all of you gave me when I had a family emergency and resorted to smoking again. It really helped me when I needed it and now I'm back to not smoking again.

But it was pretty bad for about three days when I not only smoked again I smoked like a chimney. Just about as close to chain smoking that I've ever come and I blame it on things not going well for my daughter and we are not out of the woods yet.

It was supposed to be a fairly routine procedure to remove a cyst on one of her ovaries and was also supposed to be an out-patient procedure where should have been home by noon. But instead the procedure went bad and she started bleeding internally. They had to cut her open to stop the bleeding and she had to spend the next three days in the hospital.

My wife spent most of that time up at the hospital with our daughter while I babysat our two grandsons. And of course smoked one cigarette after another while also cussing myself for falling off the wagon after I had quit for more than five months. I could not believe I was doing that while I was actually doing it.

Anyway I'm back home now while my wife is still at our daughter's house and I'm going to make this one another short diary because I've got a lot of little chores to catch up around the house and yard. And to be honest I'm still a little worn out.

But again I want to thank the GUSers and even the idea of GUS because I'm pretty sure if I didn't have GUS to come back to I'd have just bought another pack of cigarettes this morning instead of posting this diary.

So you've had some experience with the effects of smoking, and want to write a GUS diary or host an open thread? Please sign up in the Butt Can (Tip Jar), and name the day and time that works for you (AM, PM, late-night, early-bird...) How to write a GUS diary the easy way.
Continue Reading

Wed Aug 06, 2014 at 06:35 AM PDT

GUSing Day One

by Homers24

Yeppers. That's the truth. I'm with my wife babysitting our grandsons. Their mother has to go into the hospital for tests in the morning. And I did not survive that test. Which is all I've got to say about that right now. I'm just going to auto send this one. And I'll be back in a day or two.

GUS (Gave Up Smoking) is a community support diary for Kossacks in the midst of quitting smoking. Any supportive comments, suggestions or positive distractions are appreciated. We avoid discussion of political issues. If you are quitting or even thinking about quitting, please -- join us! GUS Library at dKosopedia is organically evolving, and stocked with free-range information: quit-smoking links, helpful GUS diary writing tips, and the GUS buddy list.

So you've had some experience with the effects of smoking, and want to write a GUS diary or host an open thread? Please sign up in the Butt Can (Tip Jar), and name the day and time that works for you (AM, PM, late-night, early-bird...) How to write a GUS diary the easy way.
Continue Reading

Mon Aug 04, 2014 at 07:20 AM PDT

GUSing Stroke Of Genius

by Homers24

GUS (Gave Up Smoking) is a community support diary for Kossacks in the midst of quitting smoking. Any supportive comments, suggestions or positive distractions are appreciated. We avoid discussion of political issues. If you are quitting or even thinking about quitting, please -- join us! GUS Library at dKosopedia is organically evolving, and stocked with free-range information: quit-smoking links, helpful GUS diary writing tips, and the GUS buddy list.
I've actually got a stroke of genius to report. But the problem is its just one of those little strokes of genius that if you don't catch it the second it happens you might very well  miss it. Not enough to make an actual diary of but ... you know ...it started with "free tickets."

But in this instance the ticket holders were our grandsons and the "free pass" was for the public (tax payer funded) aquatic center, which is a place we go to pretty often anyway. So sure, when grandma and I were invited to go swimming for free with our grandsons we readily agreed (steam room, sauna, hot tub) and especially since this was one of the rewards they received for graduating their summer swimming classes. A free (one time) family pass.

Ok, now I don't know how it is where you live, but where I live there is no specific definition of "family" and there are no real limits and there wasn't on these tickets either. The only limit was that the ticket holder had to have successfully passed their summer swimming lessons but as far as what constituted "family" it could be anyone up to seven people. And just with my grandsons two tickets that could have been 14 people.

Its a good thing that we just happened to get there very early. Because while there weren't all that many people there at first more and more started showing up soon after and I noticed them because instead of hiding out in the sauna I was holding my breath under water with my snorkeling youngest grandson in the big pool or swimming, floating, relaxing, and conversing with my 12 year old grandson in the deep end.

And it wasn't until I actually did sneak off to the sauna that I happened to look back on that scene from the wading pool, to the "big pool," and the "deep end," and suddenly saw the little stroke of genius that they had unleashed upon us.

The reason myself and so many others were spending all that time out there swimming with the "graduates" of their summer swimming lessons is because they could swim. And even in the case of especially those little toddlers even if they could not actually swim there was just such a world of difference between this time and the last time you saw them in the water it was absolutely remarkable. Stark ... ya know. Improvement by a league if you will. Got no idea what that really is, but its got to be a bunch. And that was the amount of improvement those "graduates" had achieved.

How cynical I thought (if you are in one of the "reddest" places on earth.) Take both your money and your taxes and use it to subsidize socialist programs like swimming lessons  for kids. And then, if that is not bad enough, trick you into violating all those  alleged anti-government freebie ideals, go to the pool and have the inescapable experience of witnessing first hand just how remarkably well it had worked.

And here's the sad part (you knew there had to be one)  and where the actual stroke of genius comes in. See, the sad part is that this is nothing new or even unique. You know no matter how much our public schools and programs are demonized they are actually by absolute  majority conducted by human beings that really do want to do the best possible job they can and they do.

Its just this time the people who ran this program managed to trick a whole lot of people into showing up in person and witnessing first hand what a difference they made.

Just a little stroke of genius I hope catches on and nobody shoots them.

So you've had some experience with the effects of smoking, and want to write a GUS diary or host an open thread? Please sign up in the Butt Can (Tip Jar), and name the day and time that works for you (AM, PM, late-night, early-bird...) How to write a GUS diary the easy way.
Continue Reading

Mon Jul 28, 2014 at 08:28 AM PDT

Open Monday Morning GUS Thread

by Homers24

Well Ok so I went to see Andy Frasco. And yes my kids are right. Andy Frasco is not just your average bar band. Andy and his band are hard-driving, fun loving, crowd pleasing, impromptu, and as musicians go far above the average you are going to see in some bar somewhere. And just let me add I saw him in a bar where men are men and sheep are nervous. A really uptight and painfully conservative crowd. Seemingly dead to the world, its beauty and triplicate notes. But Andy and his Boys still managed to win them over, one note, one song, and one set at a time.

And the rest of you might get a chance to hear Andy Frasco and his band soon. From the middle of Wyoming (no less) their next stop was Germany, and then its on to fulfilling the obligations of the record deal they just signed. So someday we might all be able to listen to Andy and his band.

Ok and now onto a corrected backdate:

In one of my earlier dairies this spring I lamented about a late frost killing all the blossoms on our apricot trees, our plumb trees, and our apple trees. And I was right about all of them except one apricot tree that somehow has managed to produce at least a couple dozen apricots. And as if to almost spite mother nature herself, man, are those apricots good. We have been really enjoying them just eating them fresh each day.

And speaking of days its been 153 days since I smoked a cigarette. And let's not kid ourselves. It could be day Zero again before the day is over. But even so I'm glad and a little proud of my five months so far.

Alright this thread is officially open so let's have at it.

So you've had some experience with the effects of smoking, and want to write a GUS diary or host an open thread? Please sign up in the Butt Can (Tip Jar), and name the day and time that works for you (AM, PM, late-night, early-bird...) How to write a GUS diary the easy way.
Continue Reading

Wed Jul 23, 2014 at 06:50 AM PDT

Another GUSing Frasco Run

by Homers24

GUS (Gave Up Smoking) is a community support diary for Kossacks in the midst of quitting smoking. Any supportive comments, suggestions or positive distractions are appreciated. We avoid discussion of political issues. If you are quitting or even thinking about quitting, please -- join us! GUS Library at dKosopedia is organically evolving, and stocked with free-range information: quit-smoking links, helpful GUS diary writing tips, and the GUS buddy list.
Sorry about being AWOL Monday but my wife and I were on another babysitting/Andy Frasco run and just couldn't get to it.

And what a run it was, even though to paraphrase Andy Frasco; it was a struggle. And I mean not smoking that is. There were even far fewer smokers around this time and yet I really had to fight the urge to smoke a cigarette most the time I was there. But by now I know I can resist those urges and I didn't want to lose all I've gained. So I managed to survive that.

But the rest of the trip was just absolutely golden.

Here was the known itinerary. Babysit Friday night for Andy Frasco. Babysit Saturday night for an engagement party. A birthday party for our youngest grandson on Sunday. Drag ourselves home Monday.

Realizing of course that none of you have probably ever heard of Andy Frasco except from my little diary blurbs his only real importance is all four of our adult children are fans of his and its become a recent family tradition for them to get together and go out to see him whenever he performs at the Alibi in Relapse City. And for that they need babysitters, which is where Grandpa and Grandma come in. We can babysit all five of them in one place and its a great night for everyone.

And you could tell because two of the five grandkids were still laughing and playing when their parent's got home which as you can imagine was pretty late. But what can I say, grandpa and grandma can be quite the push-overs when the cousins all get together so we just let them have their fun.

Which to us is what makes the three and a half hour drive down to Relapse City worth the time and trouble. But this trip also had a couple of additional bonuses because at least two of our kids also had an engagement party to attend Saturday night and then Sunday was our (now three year-old) grandson's birthday.

That actually makes for a pretty busy weekend but it did kind of leave Saturday open and that's when for all the formal planning that open space was where the miraculous happened. Its was where something amazing and unplanned was accomplished. An event that turned a relaxing summer Saturday morning into a very  collectible different day.

It started with the whole family being together drinking coffee Saturday morning and one of the aunts asking how one of our summer projects was going? Which is helping our oldest grandson learn to ride a bicycle. Its kind of embarrassing but while the kid can play any video game in the world he's 12 years-old and has never learned to ride a bike. And the way things were going with his mother, plus grandma and I trying to help him learn this summer I'd secretly given up just about all hope that he ever would learn to ride a bicycle.

But that was not alright with one of his uncles and he simply announced that would change before the sun set on that day. And it instantly went into kind of a code-red family project. Within minutes a mountain bike just my grandson's size was produced. Then my grandson was informed he was going to learn to ride it. Then his three uncles escorted him out into the street and put him on that bicycle. And between the three of them they just completely overwhelmed him and most importantly overwhelmed the fear in my grandson's head which was actually the only thing that was keeping him from riding a bicycle in the first place. And it sure didn't hurt when his uncles told him that if he could ride that mountain bike up and down the street they would buy him his own brand new one.

And even though I could hardly believe my eyes (even though I watched for about three hours straight) low and behold before that day was over my grandson was riding his brand new bicycle up and down the street all on his own. It was just magic and I think one of the best things that has happened to my grandson (both physically and mentally) in a very long time. And it came right out of the blue. None of it planned or pre-scripted and yet it was just a great accomplishment and a wonderful day.

It was so wonderful I managed to keep a smile on my face for another night of cartoons and kids movies while we babysat for all the grandkids on Saturday night. Which turned out to be another long one even though the grandchildren were actually asleep fairly early. But we let them make a camp in the living room right in front of the TV and they fell off to sleep without even knowing it. With the only problem being I have no idea how their TV works and so we were stuck with whatever the kids had on and were too chicken to try and change it for fear of waking them up for hours.

By the time the birthday party for the three year-old came around on Sunday while grandma and grandpa were glad to be there, and neither of us would have willing admitted it, we were both just about partied out. But fortunately for us this turned out to be a great little birthday party instead of some big production and was more relaxing then it was work.

But all told it did take a toll on us by the time we managed to drag our way home Monday, and I keep saying "drag" because my legs were still sore from having to prove grandpa was not lying when I told my grandsons once you learn to ride a bike, even if you haven't ridden one for decades, you never forget how. Which was a foolish thing to say because it was immediately followed with; "Oh yeah. Prove it." And I was right. Even after not riding a bike for decades I still remembered how. I had just forgotten how sore that could make me. But even that soreness kind of made me smile because it reminded me of the magic of the weekend.

So that's how its going for me. How's it going for any other GUSers in range this morning?

So you've had some experience with the effects of smoking, and want to write a GUS diary or host an open thread? Please sign up in the Butt Can (Tip Jar), and name the day and time that works for you (AM, PM, late-night, early-bird...) How to write a GUS diary the easy way.
Continue Reading

Mon Jul 14, 2014 at 07:05 AM PDT

GUSing Hummingbirds

by Homers24

GUS (Gave Up Smoking) is a community support diary for Kossacks in the midst of quitting smoking. Any supportive comments, suggestions or positive distractions are appreciated. We avoid discussion of political issues. If you are quitting or even thinking about quitting, please -- join us! GUS Library at dKosopedia is organically evolving, and stocked with free-range information: quit-smoking links, helpful GUS diary writing tips, and the GUS buddy list.
Its been kind of a strange summer around here. Because its actually rained a lot more times than usual and when it does rain it seems to rain a lot more. We are in the rain zone where a two inch rain means the rain drops hit the ground two inches apart. And six inch rains are not uncommon.

The temperatures have also been kind of a mix. We've had plenty of 90+ degree days but not as many as usual and then we've had breaks where its been relatively cool with temperatures down in the low 70's maybe even 60's. And that's strange for us.

Or at least it occurred to me it was strange the other morning when I was looking at a dark grey overcast sky, about 70 degrees, and real live ground soaking drizzling rain. In July. That was just amazing to me and a really welcome and beautiful thing to behold. And I was just reclining in my chair, sipping my coffee, and soaking it up. In fact I even volunteered it was my day to water the lawn's and garden just so my wife doesn't have to do it ALL the time.

I honestly didn't think it could get much better than that and then all of a sudden a Hummingbird showed up at the feeder and I was literally shocked to see it. I mean we've got a red liquid feeder and of course we have Hummingbirds show up but its always kind of a rare and pleasantly surprising visit when one of them flutters in. And I was shocked to see one on such a cloudy and drizzly day.

So perhaps you can appreciate how amazed I was to see at least two or three (it gets really hard trying to count Hummingbirds) more come darting and fluttering in. And just utterly stunned when one of them, a color I've never seen before, just perched on top of the iron hook the feeder hangs off of and sort of took up residence there. That one in fact seemed to actually lay claim to the feeder and appeared to be trying to intimidate all the others.

All this on a dark, cool, and drizzling morning. It went on for more than an hour, and I was sitting there watching it with binoculars. All total, counting the number of Hummingbirds, and the amount of time I actually got to see each one of them I did more Hummingbird watching in a little over an hour that morning than I've probably done in my whole life.

And while I love learning new things and observing things I've never seen before that made no sense to me at all. Why on a dark, cool and drizzly morning like that? We've had more than our share of nice, sunny, calm mornings lately and we are lucky if one Hummingbird drops by. But take the one strange seemingly bad morning and suddenly they are out in force.

So not knowing myself, before I have to embark on some sort of research mission, I thought I would try to take the easy way out and see if any GUSers know anything about this Hummingbird behavior and/or have seen it before?

So you've had some experience with the effects of smoking, and want to write a GUS diary or host an open thread? Please sign up in the Butt Can (Tip Jar), and name the day and time that works for you (AM, PM, late-night, early-bird...) How to write a GUS diary the easy way.
Continue Reading
You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.

RSS

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site