Showing you Oregon,one post at a time. Did you know that I post the links of many of my stories and articles on the sidebar? When you have extra time, please scroll down to see more. At the bottom of this page there are links to many other blogs that I enjoy.

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My words and photographs are copyrighted, and may not be used without permission.

~ Kathy

Sunday, September 7, 2014

Some More Pictures from the Collier Logging Museum in Chiloquin, OR

Cary and I will be heading out tomorrow to explore the Columbia River Gorge and attend another fun reunion with his former co-workers.  I'm so excited about beginning our travels, and taking lots of pictures.  We are taking the laptop, so I hope to be doing a few blog posts along the way.

In the meantime, here are some more photos of the logging museum from the 4th of July weekend this summer.  I have enough for one more post about the cookhouse exhibit, but I will save those for another time.  Here is the link for the Pioneer Village post.


~ Kathy M.

You can click on any picture to enlarge it for easier viewing.

At Oregon Gifts of Comfort and Joy, if you miss a day, you miss a lot!  All material on this post is copyrighted and not for use without my permission ...Please click here to go to my home page and see what is happening in Mayberry today.
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Friday, September 5, 2014

Returning to My Real Life:


Okay, so some of these pictures are from my cell phone and aren't of the best quality, but I like them.  The important thing here is that my life is now of the best quality.  I'm not really sure how all of this has happened, and how I got so lucky, but it has a lot to do with meeting and marrying my best friend husband, Cary.  He gives me love, support and supports my choices.  Thank you, Cary Matthews.

(I can already tell, this is going to be one of those cathartic sort of posts.  It is heading in a hundred different directions, but I am going to go with it and try to tie it all together.  I hope that you can bear with me as it does involve some complaining, or you might want to just scroll down to the pictures.  I have decided that after today, I am putting this story to rest.)

In March of 2013, I did something that changed my routine and my world.  I went to work for a local non-profit preschool/childcare center.  Early Childhood Education is something that I have done throughout my life, and it is what I went to school for.  I wanted to get back into it, without tying us down to a home daycare, which I wasn't sure that Cary would go for anyway. 

Prior to taking this job, I had a great life then too. I just didn't appreciate it as much as I do now.  I had a flexible schedule, was married to my boss, enjoyed my job and worked hard on my blog and my early Oregon history research.  I took lots of pictures, we went on little trips as often as we could, and made an adventure out of a Sunday drive.  Anything to make my blog and our lives more interesting and fun.  I cooked, clean, took care of the dogs and of us.  It was a good gig.  Then I went and changed it.

I was hired by one group of people, and within the first week on my own, most of them were gone; they got fired or quit, including the director.  It was very traumatic.  By that July, three more people were gone.  In August, one more.  This May, one more.  

On top of that, I was in the toddler room and was changing at least 20 diapers a day and dealing with some strong-willed, (and rather upset) two-year-olds.  It was not easy.  My room was also the nap room, so right after lunch I had to clean up, set up 8+ mats with sheets, pillows cases and blankets and change everybody's diapers. By myself.  See, that is the name of the game in a daycare; keep the ratios right and work the employees to death.  Pay them minimum wage so that you can try and pay the bills to keep the place open.  When I switched rooms, then I had ten kids by myself, but no diapers and no nap time.  It was worth the trade, I suppose.

My body was totally worn out from being in a physically demanding job, and I caught ever single thing going around.  On top of that, I had to play catch up with required classes and spent nearly every weekend for the first month attending them.  

I loved the kids, and the parents appreciated me, but I ran into some other issues that didn't set right with me.  There was money stolen out of my purse a couple of times.  Co-workers didn't always do their jobs.  Some spent most of their time on their smartphones instead of teaching the kids.  Working with women produces many power-trips, and I tried my best to just hold my own.  Payroll was often incorrect at first (that got changed, but I was always careful about signing my sheet after that). We were expected to work on holiday weekends for free at the fundraisers and Cary and I ended up making cash donations to those so that I didn't have to do that.   One co-worker had was way too moody and hard to predict and it was super difficult to work with her.  She was having a hard time with the situation herself.  The new supervisor worked hard and made positive changes to the center, but used scolding me through texts and in person as a means of control. That was really hard to take for me, and was the basis of most of my frustration.  She would try to throw anybody under the bus if it meant that she could look better.  

I spent a lot of my own money for my rooms, but for the most part I was okay with that.  I wasn't okay with having to buy my own markers and the notebooks for portfolios.  In all that time, I wasn't given a raise.  There I was, with my 4-year degree, at first making a dollar more an hour than the young girls with no formal education.  But, as minimum wage goes up each year in Oregon, they got raises when a new person got hired so that they could make more than the new person.  I was supposed to be "rich" and not "need" the money so I never got one.  I was told once that making $11 or $12 per hour in this field was simply an outlandish wage.  Really???  It was really hard to find somebody to take my job, come to find out.

Why in the world would I put all of this on my blog, you may wonder?  Because:

For a year-and-a-half, Cary had to listen to me debrief every night for hours.  Finally he would say, stop, that is enough, I can't listen to it anymore!  My kids, my Mom, my friends ... anybody who called me had to listen to me go on and on.  Sorry about that, you guys.  It was just not a good fit, and I tried so hard to make it work.  The whole situation reminds me of my second marriage.

The only thing that kept me sane was decorating my room.  It was really pretty before I transferred into the preschool class in December.  The next room turned out nice too, and I posted about it last month.  Here are a few pictures of my first room back then.  It just makes me feel better to see what I did and how even when I was frustrated, the kids did benefit from having me there.  I left so much of my stuff at the center when I quit.  I left things better than I found them.

So, what did I do?  I finally left.  I walked away (after serving five weeks of my two month notice).  When I hit my wall, it is over.  For good.  Am I responding in anger?  I am responding with frustration, I will admit to that.  If people from that place read this post, maybe they will change a few things in the future.  Or, maybe not.

However ...

Now, I am back home, back where I belong.  The house is clean, dinners are being made, I am back to blogging, and I started writing my first book yesterday!  I am so excited.  I am back in balance and am putting my energy to something that only I can do.  Others can replace me as a preschool teacher, but only I can do this other stuff the way that I will do it.

Thanks for reading this post.  I just had to get some stuff off of my chest.  I will never work for a private daycare again.  I might eventually open my own home daycare, where I get to do things my way and get paid well for my efforts.  Or, I might work for Head Start sometime in the future, where they pay well and I can receive benefits.

But I really hope that I can stay "retired" for awhile and maybe even make some money as an author.  Wouldn't that be nice?  In the meantime, I will continue to work hard at whatever comes my way and be very grateful for my life.  I am so glad that I got the chance to return to it.

I hope that you all have a wonderful weekend! 


Kathy M.

Oh, here is the link to the post with the pictures of my second room if you want to take a look:  "New Beginnings"


 At Oregon Gifts of Comfort and Joy, if you miss a day, you miss a lot!  All material on this post is copyrighted and not for use without my permission ...Please click here to go to my home page and see what is happening in Mayberry today.  
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Sunday, August 31, 2014

Pioneer Village at Collier State Park, Chiloquin OR:

The Collier Logging Museum is located on Hwy 97 near Chiloquin, Oregon.  It is a huge outdoor display showing the living history of logging in Oregon.  It is free (though they do accept donations) and is well worth the stop.  The kids will love it!  We didn't stay that long, and though I took a lot of pictures, I missed some displays on the back side.

Nestled up along side of Spring Creek, there is a Pioneer Village.  Log cabins and buildings have been relocated to this spot from other areas in Oregon.  Folks have worked so hard on this, and I love this sort of thing so I took a lot of photos.  The buildings were locked and were dark inside, so I didn't know what the camera was going to pick up as I put the camera up to the windows.

Here is the village.  You can enlarge the pictures by clicking on them so that the plaques are easier to read.


1. Banta Log Cabin


2. Redden Log Cabin


3. Sheepherder's Cabin



4. Bear Flat Store


5. Sawbones Log Cabin


6.  Gilchrist Log Cabin


 7.  Homesteader's Log Cabin


8.  Explorer's Cabin

(This one might not be accurate.)

So, there you go.  Here is a link to the museum's website: Collier Logging Museum

If you enjoyed this post, you might also like to check out this post that I did several years ago: Ft. Rock Village Museum Post.  It is of the museum at Ft. Rock, where they also brought in old buildings from Oregon and set up a little town.  

Please come back again soon!


~ Kathy M. 


 At Oregon Gifts of Comfort and Joy, if you miss a day, you miss a lot!  All material on this post is copyrighted and not for use without my permission ...Please click here to go to my home page and see what is happening in Mayberry today.  Protected by Copyscape Duplicate Content Check

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