Posts Tagged With: Owl Pellets


Thanksgiving is a unique American holiday. A time to take stock, reflect on the good things in life and…a time to take goofy pictures.

A pomegranate almost the size of Owen’s head. It has dried, cracked and shrunk some since it was picked from their backyard tree.

It is November and crisp enough outside for sweaters. These guys never want to wear long pants or shoes unless they are visiting the snow. They are all legs.

My daughter is mentoring a Brazilian PHD student. Stuffed Turkey isn’t new to him, but Thanksgiving is. Each person at the table shares what we have to be thankful for on  this day.   I may rant about politics, but this is the greatest country on earth and I’m thankful for that.

Everyone gives a hand with the dinner.

After dinner the desserts: apple crisp, pear tart, pumpkin pie, and walnut pie. Son-in-law is the artistic pie baker. Equally fit for pilgrims and kings.

Then a walk in the park. And, if you walk with three biologists, you have to inspect what an owl ate for Thanksgiving. Little bones, feathers and a small skull are evidence in the owl pellet.

Marciel came here almost four months ago with no English. In Brazil, he had only played cards a couple of times. He did not know how to shuffle. No trump games or bidding. He learned three new card games, trump, bidding, betting. A new dice game. He then bested Doug seven games in a row too much howling on Doug’s part. We relished Doug’s loss and shouts of anguish at being bested.

The two grandma’s look like they’ve been sucking too long on a wine bottle. Goofy pictures are part of the deal, doncha know. We think we are a normal family, whatever normal is.



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The road West of Reno had over a mile of narrow passage for roadwork and I was grateful that Jim was driving. The Sierra’s are beautiful, the weather was balmy and nice for the last stretch to home.
There is a song with these words: Far away places with strange sounding names,
Calling, calling, me!
The strange soundings names disappeared as we entered more familiar territory on Highway 80. It occurred to me that what is familiar to me is just as exotic to someone else, like Sparks, Dutch Flat, Heather Glen, Blue Canyon, and flumes.

The flumes hug the hillsides on the Western slope of the Sierras. Whenever we have out of state visitors, they are quite curious about the flumes. I’ve seen them in the wintertime around Truckee with icicles five and six feet long.

The snowshed is also visible in several different places. The sheds cover the train to make passage possible in the winter.

Another familiar sight, logging trucks with skinny logs these days. We saw one in Colorado as well.

My last stop before home?  Pick up my Prius from my daughter’s house and visit with family. Grandsons Theo and Owen have two new family members, Lyra and Luna. Named for a star and moon.

I visited a couple hours before heading up to Murphys in the foothills above Sacramento.

The boys are now earning their spending money by collecting and selling owl pellets. Its a bit hard to relate to a Lemonade Stand, or walking the dog. But, science classes use them and they are glad to get them. The world is an ever changing place.

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