I have been working hard on our Oregon Independent Aggregate Association (OIAA) stuff. They put me in charge of the website www.oraggregate.com and of the newsletter. I am a volunteer, but then so is everybody else at OIAA. I enjoy it, but it takes a lot of my time. That is in addition to my own blog on MSHA (the Mine Safety Health Administration, which is under the Dept. of Labor). MSHA has been doing this abuse of power thing and charging mine operators high fines. All the money they collect for things like peeing in the woods (I am not kidding you), goes into the general fund. Now MSHA is increasing their enforcement and their fines (up to $85,000 to $220,000 per episode). So, there is a grassroots movement across the nation to help get them back to being normal and fair. OIAA is one of those groups, and Cary is on the Board of Directors. This is our way of being politically active, and of trying to keep our gravel pit in business.
In trying to figure out what was going on and how things worked, I created a blog about preparing for an MSHA inspection last spring. (I swear, if I had known about blogging when I was in college, I would have made each big paper that I wrote a blog.) That website has grown into a major resource page, and, I'm not kidding you, there are people from all over the world reading that blog. Check out the cluster map on the bottom of the sidebar on that website if you don't believe me. I am not going to even tell my brother that there are 5 people in Russia following me on that site. If you want to check it out, here is the website address: www.lrmincmsha.blogspot.com
All that work takes me away from here, my beloved home base, where I get to be creative. I am still writing and thinking when I am doing the OIAA stuff, but it is more factual than fun or feelings. Except for the newsletter. This week was my first newsletter, and I had to do a lot of updates to our computer to be able to use Word 2007. Oh, man is it cool. I hadn't even used Word forever, and I am having so much fun. The newsletter should be sent out today and also be posted on the OIAA website at www.oraggregate.com.
Other News for the Diary:
The A-Frame behind us has been rented, to someone we know. Nobody has lived there for 4 or so years, so it will be different. I hope that they are not too nosy when we start using the hot tub again. Or too loud.
My Dad and Jill are moving back to Arizona for good, and that makes me sad. But, Jill is giving me her mom's old sewing machine, and that makes me happy.
I have to go in for a colonoscopy tomorrow. Just routine, because I'm getting older. I think I am more worried about the IV than anything else ... I've never even had one of those. Today I am on a clear liquid diet. Yesterday I was in Bi Mart, and for some reason started telling this older lady about my upcoming event. She was so nice. She told me that she had colon cancer in 1991 and so she has to have a colonoscopy every once in a while, but not to worry about it; the stuff you have to drink is the worst part. Then she told me that she had one breast removed also, but that God wasn't finished with her being here yet. That lady just radiated God's love. I gave her a big hug and told her thank you, that she was making me feel so much better. When I told her that I had never even had an IV, she broke into a big smile and said, "Oh, honey, well, bless your heart! She reminded me of my Grandma Johnson when she said that. We both knew that I was lucky to have never been sick enough to go into the hospital and get an IV. (I had my girls in the hospital, but didn't need an IV. I never did like the idea of Demerol during childbirth.)
That nice lady at Bi-Mart reminded me to be an encourager to others. So, I took the Grandmas next door corned beef and cabbage last night. It was really good stuff, if I do say so myself. The Grandmas were happy.
I am reading "Because of Winn Dixie". It is exactly like the movie. I love it when the movie people stick to the book. ("The Princess Bride" did that too.) Gloria Dump told Opal to not judge people because of their past, but take a look at how they are doing right now. That helped me a lot to change my attitude about my new neighbors. People really trying to make a fresh start should get a second chance.
I bought new sheets for our bed yesterday. Blue. I don't know if they have deep pockets or not, and I hope they fit. We will soon find out.
One last thing, I found a new reality show that I really like. "Billy the Exterminator". It is so funny! Watch it if you get a chance.
Have a great day!