Dogwood Ramblings

Here we go again.  The administration in D.C. has now mandated that in a few years all new vehicles must give us 55 miles to the gallon.  According to the New York Times (a fish wrap paper), this will add a minimum of $8,000 to each vehicle and this administration says it will save fuel consumers $2,000 per year.  Of course, in order for the auto industry to survive this, the vehicles will be much lighter weight and that makes them more susceptible to ravages of an accident.

The conundrum here is that in Europe they have vehicles already giving 70+ MPG and those vehicles are not allowed to be shipped here, not allowed to be in our auto market.  Why?  Well, that would reduce the amount of fuels used in this nation, fuels upon which there are staggering taxes (Federal at $.13 per gallon), taxes that support our infrastructure, our road maintenance.  This administration can scream to the high heavens about us going “green” but in the end, it all goes back to $$$$.  I’ve never seen an accounting of how fuel tax dollars are used.  Have you?

Our background and circumstances may have influenced who we are, but, we are responsible for who we become.

Last Tuesday evening we had a birthday party here for Reanna as she turned 11 years old.  She was pleased with her gifts, the German chocolate cake with candles as well as with the meal Ron and I put together at the last minute.  We had fried chicken, enchiladas, spaghetti, lasagna, corn on the cob, mixed vegetables, and garlic toast.  This may sound a strange concoction but, it was delicious, a potluck of sorts.  This was also a surprise for Arlene and Rex when they got home from work.

As expected, my driveway has become a popular turn around for cars and even business vans such as Fed Ex, Century Link, etc., and of course, various vehicles that have seen something at Randy Dugan’s auto place and need to go back for a better look.  The difference now is they speed the whole way as if hoping I won’t see them doing it.  I suppose I’d be in deep doo-doo if I put some nails out there.

We in this nation are truly spoiled.  I am one of the spoiled.  Last Wednesday morning I lost phone service and the Internet.  Repair man finally arrived here Thursday afternoon and got me back up and running.  Apparently the problem was on a pole down by AK from some prior lightning in the area.  I didn’t pout (don’t think I did), didn’t cry, but I doggone sure was frustrated.  I did manage to inform the Century Link repairman that I had seen him using my driveway as I thanked him profusely for doing this job.

Rain!  Blessed rain! It rained most of Friday and of course, before sunrise, while Ivan was unloading some big round bales from a truck out of Oklahoma over at Randy’s place, making for a muddy mess.  It was good to get back to the house and launder every stitch of clothing, including shoes, and having a nice cup of coffee.  Then later on, Arlene showed up to help me put together a big mailing for the church, bless her heart.

So, after Mass on Sunday I stopped to pick up a few things that I’d forgotten last Thursday.  I spent at least 15 minutes by the toothpaste and finally found Listerine toothpaste that is manufactured in this country.  On to the pasta area and I finally found Barilla brand spaghetti that is made in this country – most packages state “distributed by xxx” with no information where it was produced.  There was a little bit of luck in the fruit and veggies area with potatoes from Colorado and greens from California.  So many packagers of items think they are fooling us (and they are fooling most of us!) by having products saying distributed by some American company.  Please do your homework and buy American.  Have you ever seen pictures of the humongous ships from China, loaded with semi-trailers of items for our markets?  There are so many vehicles out there these days that are obviously not American and when you think you have found one, the engine or some other part comes from Canada or Europe.  If you buy these, you are part of our economic problems.  If you have electronics most of your repair parts, etc. are not manufactured here.  It seems we are supporting the world, like it or not.

I did pick up a huge pork roast (American grown) that is now in the crock pot – to become pulled pork and pork verde.  There should be many meals out of that roast as much of it will go into the freezer.

Regina called from Oregon.  Justin starts school on Sept. 12th.  They are looking to get some calves as they have a bit of pasture there.  Mike Schultz has been at Eva Wymer’s former place nearly every day as he remodels the home.  He has brought in a trailer to attach to the house and it is big enough for two bedrooms and an office – and looks like it will attach nicely to the west side of the house.  A lot of shooting was going on at Eva White’s place on Sunday and my newest stray was quivering in fear.

It is time to do some mowing as the crabgrass is really coming on.  Hopefully the fescue will come on shortly.  At least, it is green out there even though the trees are starting to yellow.

Good advice:  Either you control your attitude or it controls you.

Until next week, be well and may God bless you.

From the Desk of Jamey Herd –

Pleasant Ridge Baptist Church by Jamey Herd: What a blessing the rain was this past week. We received about 3 ½ inches here on Dogwood hill. We need more to put water in the ponds. This fell so softly and slow I am not sure it helped the water situation any. But have you noticed how the pastures and lawns have greened up and the grass grew over night it seems like.

We had a good service and a good Sunday school lesson with a lot of good discussion on the scriptures. Prayer request went out to Alice and Ray Holt, Mark Barnes, and several others. Mark is improving at last report. Pastor Carl brought a good sermon on “Jesus’s blood being shed for our sins”. Leveta, Chris and Brenda had 8 in children’s church.

After all the years I have lived here, I never thought to ask the old timers how Pleasant Ridge and Dogwood got their names. I ask Joan Workman about this and she doesn’t know how Pleasant Ridge got its name. She said that many years ago Ruby Williams told how Dogwood got its name. It was named by one of the Painters that was the post master. I am not sure if there was a post office in Dogwood. Have you seen Depew on a map of this area and wondered where it was. I’ve heard it mentioned during storm warnings on the TV and radio. Depew was a post office and was located just on the east side of our property where the white two story house is that sits on the sharp curve of 14 highway.

Depew is a populated place located in Douglas County at latitude 37.023 and longitude -92.863.The elevation is 1,585 feet. Depew appears on the Dogwood U.S. Geological Survey Map. Douglas County is in the Central Time Zone (UTC -6 hours).” This was taken from an internet search.

The county road went south at that curve and went down and across Swan Creek to Ongo. That county road was abandoned for the one at the county line before we moved here in the 60’s. There is a small cemetery on that old road called the Wright cemetery. Even though you have to get permission to get down to that cemetery the caretakers of the property keep the cemetery cleaned and mowed. The one room school house for this area was named Pleasant Hope Dogwood School. They just recently had their school reunion at the Bruner community building.

That is my news and history lesson for this week. God Bless and stay safe if out traveling.