Orange and Gray

My apologies for not writing last week and for not even saying all was OK. I had a friend up with his two boys last Sunday, so we were busy having fun most of the day and even into the evening hours Sunday. Monday and Tuesday got away from me and by the time Wednesday came, I figured I would just wait. I had been updating the forecasts, so I just figured everyone would know I was still alive and kicking, but that was just too much figuring on my part!

So all is well with me and the rest of the Dee’s. We have all been busy with a variety of things. Some of them outdoors and some of them indoors, as Mother Nature has been up to her old tricks in the past 2 weeks, with some days very nice and others very poor. It will be interesting to see if this one will be one that is remembered by most locals up here. I know the frequent cloudy, cold and rainy days have certainly been the subject of conversation for most of the summer, although there have not been any records or “extreme” weather events up this way this summer, so the lack of drama may just allow it to fade away into the dark spots of our memory banks. We’ll have to let time make that decision.

The friend that was up visiting last week also brought up his dog. It is a golden lab and although it is around 3 years old, it had not been exposed to the water enough to know it could swim. I think that anyone that has owned a water dog like a lab knows that they do not need to be taught how to swim, they just need the proper opportunity to make the discovery that they can swim all on their own. So one of the objectives was to get this dog, Bauer, together with Huck and Millie and take them all to the beach with the hopes that Bauer would start swimming.

It did not take too long at all. Bauer was tentative of the water at first, not wanting to go in past the bottom of his belly. While Huck and Millie did not know that they were a form of instructor, I could see that Bauer was seeing them swim and starting to think that it might be possible for him. We tossed some sticks into the water and the dogs were getting kind of competitive about retrieving them. That helped Bauer at least go in to where the water was deeper than he could stand in, but Huck and Millie were still able to get to the stick before him, so we separated Bauer from my two and Bauer got the stick tossed in just far enough where he could not stand, but only had to grab the stick and turn around and then he could stand again. Once that process started, it probably only too a few more tosses and Bauer was swimming like a pro. So mission accomplished, there is now another lab in the world that will be very difficult to keep out of any water that he sees! Gotta love a lab.

While the swimming lessons were going on, Gracie and the two boys found their mark playing on the beach, building forts and such. It was nice to see Gracie be able to hang with some boys that were 4 years older than her and not annoy them. Not that she as any kind of tendency to annoy others, but and 8 year old girl is not the type of kid that most 12 year old boys want to hang out with. A ton of credit also goes out to the boys for being so nice and open to playing with her.

After the beach, we headed home and Gracie got ready to go to a friends birthday party with Nora. Us boys got ready for a SxS ride. The plan was to head up the spine of the peninsula and take the new ORV trail that was put in from the main trail down to Eagle Harbor. The only problem was, I was in snowmobile mode and ended up turning on the snowmobile trail that goes down to Eagle River. So we kept on it and headed over to Eagle Harbor, had a nice meal and then headed back. I was hoping to take the new trail on the way home, but must have missed the turn, or been given some wrong info on where it came into Eagle Harbor, because we did not find it and just ended up taking an alternative way back to the main trail and then back home.

In addition to his two boys, his dog and other various sundries, my buddy also brought with him his drone. He picked his up after mine and picked up a higher end unit. It is from the same company as mine, but is probably around half the size and also fold up so that is is not much bigger that a thick book. It’s called the Mavic and would be the next model that I go to if the need arises. So far, my time at the controls of the drone I have has been rather meager, so no need to upgrade just yet. However, I still have TONS of places up here that I want to take it to fly and share the sites with you all, so the interest has not dropped, just the time involved to make myself confident enough in my abilities to fly it in the spots I want to go.

With that in mind, I did charge up the batteries in mine late this week and took it out for a flight at our house yesterday. No footage, as it would have been rather boring and repetitive, as I was mostly just doing some drills to help me get better at flying it. In just the 20 minutes I flew it, I could feel my abilities improve and I just need to keep up with flying it so that my abilities do not go backwards. Nora and Grace were watching me fly and Nora wanted to give it a try, so I handed her the controller. Nora is a very cautious person by nature, so I had little worry that she would crash it badly on her first flight. What did surprise me was how well she flew it on her first try. A couple of close calls, but not a single crash. Perhaps she will get the bug and want to fly and that will be the reason to pick up a Mavic!

As mentioned, the weather the past 2 weeks has stuck to the same playbook it has been in all summer. That is nice most of the time, but then toss in 2 to 3 days of not nice weather. Interestingly enough, most of the foul weather days have been centered on Thursday. I have found that the weather can have a tendency to repeat itself in 7 day intervals. This week was no different, with some showers moving in late in the day on Wednesday and then Thursday being filled with rain, which finally dissipated as we went through Friday morning.

We did not use the pool all this week, so we did not have the heater going and by Friday morning, the temp of the water stood at a “balmy” 69 degrees. Balmy compared to Lake Superior, but way too cold for this guy to spend any time in, unless he has to! With the forecast calling for upper 70’s and low 80’s and sunshine for the weekend, I fired up the heater and filled the boiler with wood. As I looked over and saw the smoke billowing from the chimney of the boiler I also noticed a splash of autumn color in one of the trees behind the boiler and could not help but think that autumn is on its way. The forecast for the weekend did pan out and we hit the mid 70’s yesterday and the low 80’s today. The pool had warmed to a true balmy temp of 86 by noon today, so the girls and I took advantage of the warm air and water and had a good time in the pool. The days are certainly numbered for the pool now, but it will for sure stay up through next weekend, as some of Nora’s family is headed up and bringing one of Gracie’s cousins that is a year or two younger than her, so the two of them will for sure want to swim.

In my last entry I talked about the final summer work project I was going to get going on. I also commented on how I was not going to push myself to get it done in a hurry and I sure have lived up to that promise so far! I did get all my drawings done and this past week was able to take off the siding on where the little addition will go. Since that picture was taken, I have moved and stacked all the siding to use again. Grace and I have also set up string lines to represent the walls. The next step is to dig some holes for the footings, pour the footings and then get going on the hammer swiping and saw swinging…or something to that nature. The weather looks to be quite good for that type of fun this week, so perhaps some decent progress will be made.

Not much else going on up here. Just a couple more weeks and autumn will be here. The typical early, pre-season activity has already started behind the scenes at I am planning to roll out a few new things before the snow flies, so exciting times!

Good night from the Keweenaw..