Friday, January 27, 2023

More Google Memories Than I Can Remember With Uncle Mooch


Above are the latest Google memories to show up in my incoming email. I remain perplexed as to how Google has these memories that do not exist on my computer. Today I discovered that when I click on the image in the email the link goes to way more memories, allegedly from today.

In the upper left that would be my Dad, with sister Nancy in front of Dad, brother Jake on the ground, looking for something and me on the far right under a straw hat. The other kids are cousins-- Jeff, next to me, Patty in front of her mom, Audrey, with Vicki between Patty and Nancy. Jeff, Patty and Vicki were the Van Weerdhuizens. Next to Audrey, that would be John Vanweerdhuizen. My best guess is we were camping somewhere on the Washington Pacific coast, most likely Copalis, our go to location on the coast before Ocean Shores State Park opened a few years later.

At the upper right location would be the parental unit of David, Theo and Ruby, my little sister, Michele, who came along a few years after that photo with the VanWeerdhuizens was taken. I believe in the photo Michele is about to ride her decorated bike in the Burlington Berry Dairy Days Parade.

Under Michele that would be little brother, Jake, in his little league uniform. Under Jake that would be from a few years prior to Michele arriving, with sister Nancy, Jake and me sitting in front of a float we pulled in the Berry Dairy Days Parade.

And, I think that black and white photo is Uncle Mel, with a cow.

Continuing on, other photos I found in the Google Memories trove...


Another Berry Dairy Days Parade float, with sister Nancy, sitting all lady-like on her throne, waiting for her brothers to pull her through the parade.


That would be me with a decorated Berry Dairy Days Parade entry. I have zero memory of riding my bike in the parade. This would have taken place before Mom and Dad started having fun making parade floats.


Now, this one is a good memory. Dad is holding our newly arrived baby sister Jackie, with sister Nancy on one side of Jake, and me on the other side. This looks to be on a Washington Pacific beach.


And now, a year or two later, Jackie is walking, and in her Sunday best, likely to go to church. 


Above that would be Jake and me pulling Grandpa Porter on a wagon. I assume this happened somewhere in the Lynden zone. Grandpa Porter was a veterinarian.


I do not remember me and Jake being dressed alike. Mom must have thought this was cute. It looks like we are on a Washington ferry. Which ferry, and which ferry route, I have no clue.


That would be me that Dad has a hand on, with Jake sitting. My best guess is we were heading to Eastern Washington, over Stevens Pass, which would make that a Wenatchee River waterfall. 

On the right, that would be Dad's youngest brother, Uncle Mooch, who some call Uncle Gerry. Uncle Mooch one day got married to Aunt Jane. I have zero recollection of going to that wedding.

When we first met Aunt Jane we got severely scolded for calling Uncle Mooch Uncle Mooch. We only partly called Uncle Mooch Uncle Mooch due to his propensity to mooch things, like a french fry or cookie, but the main reason we called Uncle Mooch Uncle Mooch was due to the fact that me and my siblings were big fans of Disney movies.

And our favorite Disney character, played by Kevin Corcoran, was Moochie.

Here is a Wikipedia blurb about Kevin Corcoran...

Kevin Anthony "Moochie" Corcoran was an American child actor, director and producer. He appeared in numerous Disney projects between 1957 and 1963, leading him to be honored as a Disney Legend in 2006. His nickname, Moochie, established him as an irrepressible character in film.

Eventually Aunt Jane got used to us calling her first husband, Uncle Mooch...

Thursday, January 26, 2023

Not Too Chilly Walkabout At Sikes Lake


It was back to the rocky shore of Sikes Lake I ventured on this 4th Thursday of 2023. As you can see, a totally clear blue sky has returned after that recent cloudy frigid icy unpleasantness.

The temperature was not exactly balmy, at 46 degrees, when I went for my semi-daily walkabout. 

Even though there appear to be ripples on the lake, I detected no chilling wind blowing on me.

As you can see, via the photo documentation, even though it was not too cool, I still layered on a few layers of outerwear, including the cap with a skunk on it that someone sent me for Christmas.

I currently am not understanding how the current beard fad has lasted so long. Having that on ones face gets a bit annoying. 

But, the beard thing does somewhat help me look my age, instead of the baby face I am known for...

Wednesday, January 25, 2023

Lucy Park Blue Gaiter Walk While Not Falling On Black Ice


The temperature had reached a relatively balmy 39 degrees, on this 4th Wednesday of 2023, when I drove to Lucy Park to stretch my legs, which had become somewhat atrophied due to being snowbound for most of yesterday. 

Snow fell all day long yesterday. The white stuff began sticking around 4 o'clock in the afternoon.

A little after 5 I decided to check the mailbox, and if it was not too slippery, then to drive to Walmart, which I did, without incident, except for big snowflakes slamming into the windshield.

As you can see, via the Lucy Park photo documentation, most of the snow has melted.

However, there were stretches of black ice on the paved trails.

I came upon a fellow walker who engaged me in conversation to warn about the black ice, because he had slipped and fallen on black ice on the Circle Trail running alongside the Wichita River.

The falling fellow told me he was 80 years old and had been walking daily for decades. He did not look 80 years old.

Excessive walking must be youthifying.

I was heavily insulated from the outer world chill today. Had on my fur lined sweatpants, and the blue gaiter some kind soul gifted me with at Christmas, worrying I had trouble keeping warm in the frigid Texas climate.

Here is photo documentation of the multi-layers of warmth providers, including the blue gaiter.


I look like I am prepared to rob a bank. After a couple miles I removed the gaiter. It was overheating me.

It is now a couple hours past noon. The clouds have mostly disappeared, with the return of mostly blue sky...

Tuesday, January 24, 2023

Snowbound With Google Sibling & Nephew Memories


Yesterday Google Remembered All My Jones Cousins. I put that blog post on Facebook and it seemed the only thing anyone noticed was my extremely stylish hair mop.

Today the Google Memories went back a decade from the previous day's memories. As you can see, brother Jake was decades ahead of the future, wearing a red MAGA cap way back then, standing next to his big brother, who at that point in time did not have an extremely stylish hair mop.

Dad is behind me, holding baby sister, Jackie. To the right of Jake, next to Cousin Linda in orange pants is Jackie's big sister, Nancy, on one of the rare occasions at which Nancy wore a dress.

Next we time travel a few decades into the future...


All my favorite nephews (at that point in time, two more nephews, and a niece to arrive in a couple more decades) from left to right, that is Joey smiling at you. In front of Joey that is Jeremy. Behind Jeremy is the oldest of the four, Jason, currently the proud papa of Spencer Jack, who is currently older than Jason is in this photo. And on the right, looking the opposite direction from his little brother, Jeremy, is Christopher, often referred to as CJ, because Jay is his middle name. Jeremy is often referred to as JR, because Ryan is his middle name.

CJ and JR currently live in Arizona, JR in Chandler, CJ in Scottsdale. Joey and Jason both live in the old home zone of the Skagit Valley, in Washington.

That is it for Google memories on this snowbound 4th Tuesday of 2023...

UPDATE: Incoming text message from J.R. Jeremy's mother, sister Jackie, informing that that is not Jeremy, but, instead is Jeremy's cousin, Kevin Slotemaker-Jones, currently all grown up and living in San Francisco, California.

Winter Returns To Wichita Falls With Snow


Winter has returned to North Texas.

Above you are looking at the early morning view from my kitchen window. Rain has been precipitating for several hours.

The temperature is scheduled to get lower and lower as the hours pass, getting below freezing around noon, with the rain turning to snow, accumulating possibly 4 inches of the white slippery stuff.

Below is a screen shot of today's rain/snow prediction for Wichita Falls.


I likely will not be getting any outdoor endorphin inducing aerobic stimulation today. If I drive to an indoor endorphin aerobic stimulation location it will need to be before noon. I do not like driving on ice...

Monday, January 23, 2023

Google Remembers All My Jones Cousins


Among the photos in today's Google MEMORIES FROM THIS DAY, was the photo you see above. All my Slotemaker-Jones cousins together, surrounding Grandma Slotemaker-Jones.

I think this was at a park in Bellingham. It must have been a extremely special occasion, because I see my three Australian cousins are on the picture. Carol, Danny and Steve.

It looks like my current Arizona sister, Jackie, is holding my youngest sister, Michele.

Everyone in this photo is still alive, except for Grandma Slotemaker-Jones, and Cousin Scott, at the back row, far right, next to his sister, Cousin Linda.

Another photo from today's Google MEMORIES FROM THIS DAY...


Above you are looking at the oldest generation of Slotemaker-Jones. Over half are no longer with us. Uncle Mooch, at the upper left, next to my Dad, is the only one in that row still among the living. On the other side of Dad is Uncle Ivan, and next to Uncle Ivan is Uncle Mel.

In the lower row, only Grandma Slotemaker-Jone, is no longer with us. On the left of Grandma Slotemaker-Jones is Aunt Arlene, my Dad's oldest sister, currently residing in Ocean Shores, Washington. On the other side of Grandma Slotemaker-Jones is Aunt Ruth, formerly residing in Australia, currently residing in Sugarcreek, Ohio.

That's all of my memories for today...

Sunday, January 22, 2023

Chilly Pre-Football Game Pizza Party Lucy Park Walk


On this 4th Sunday of 2023, with the temperature in the 40s, it was to Lucy Park I ventured for some frisky nature communing. 

You would not think it to be the case, looking at the photo documentation, but there were a lot of people at Lucy Park today engaging in various activities.

Including one group having themselves a mighty fine time having a chilly picnic.

Snow is currently on the weather menu for Tuesday. I hope no flakes arrive.

Tonight I am having a football game watching pizza party. I expect to be seeing the San Francisco 49ers soundly trounce the Dallas Cowboys...

Friday, January 20, 2023

Fast Friday Walking Wichita Bluff Nature Area


It was to the east entry to the Wichita Bluff Nature Area I ventured on this third Friday of 2023, to commune with nature via fast walking up and down semi-steep bluffs.

That is the Wichita River looking reddish-brown in the center left of the photo, dwarfed by the super tall dried grass-like vegetation which takes up most of the photo.

The temperature was slightly above 60 by the time I was in the outer world. So, I was not in fur-lined sweatpants. Instead, was back in short pants of the cargo short type. So, a semi return to summer today.

There seems to be a noticeable increase in the number of fellow nature communers at the various locations I commune with nature. I don't know if this increase is New Year Resolution related, or just people wanting to be outside enjoying the semi summer-like weather.

Thursday, January 19, 2023

Keeping Warm At Lucy Park In Fur-Lined Sweat Pants


As photo documented above, it was to Lucy Park I drove today to commune with nature, on this third Thursday of 2023.

I was last at Lucy Park on Monday, Martin Luther King Day. That day was warm. Upper 70s. That return to summer lasted til Wednesday morning. Late in the afternoon on Tuesday I was able to go on a real long bike ride without getting cold.

And then winter returned.

It was barely 50 when I arrived at Lucy Park this morning.

I was attired in insulating winter wear, including the lined sweat pants a kind soul sent me for Christmas, worrying that I was not keeping warm enough.


The above photo is those aforementioned lined sweat pants, without me in them. I think it would be difficult to get cold wearing these.

The current 15 day forecast has us getting into February without a return to near zero temperatures. It was in February, two years ago, that the infamous Texas blackout happened, with the temperature near zero.

I really do not want another near zero experience. Or snow. Or an Ice Storm.

I have become an elderly fuddy duddy...

Tuesday, January 17, 2023

Visiting What Should Be Deception Pass National Park


A couple days ago I saw on MSN an article titled 10 State Parks That Are Even Better Than National Parks, Experts Say.

I have been to just about every National Park west of the Mississippi River. Along with a lot of various state's State Park.

It came as no shock to me that these supposed experts on this serious issue had Deception Pass State Park as their #3 on the list.

Deception Pass State Park is the largest State Park in Washington. About to get even bigger due to addition acreage acquisition.

For those reading this in Fort Worth, who have odd ideas about what an island is. That is Whidbey Island you see in the left, Fidalgo Island on the right. From this vantage point one would be seeing multiple real islands of various sizes, surrounded by real water.

Deception Pass Bridge was built in one year, during the Great Depression. Built over deep, fast moving saltwater. An extreme tide change at the Deception Pass location is an awesome sight to see. Water moving so fast boats can not navigate against the current.

Fort Worth spent over seven years to build three simple bridges over dry land, to connect the Fort Worth mainland to an imaginary island.

A few days ago, in Fort Worth's Bridgey McBridgeface Bridge Name Nonsense Boondoggle, we blogged about the bizarre effort to name those pitiful three Fort Worth bridges.

There has never been an effort to rename Deception Pass Bridge anything other than Deception Pass Bridge. And that bridge is an actual iconic bridge recognized as a symbol of the Pacific Northwest.

The blurb accompanying the MSN article sort of explained well what makes Deception Pass State Park so special...

Deception Pass State Park (Washington)
Taking up two islands in Northwest Washington, Deception Pass State Park "is absolutely stunning," Jessica Schmit, of the travel blog Uprooted Traveler, tells Best Life.

"The park is located along the waterway that connects the Strait of Juan de Fuca to Skagit Bay and thus, offers dramatic cliffs, views of turquoise waters, and craggy beaches," she says.

According to the park's website, you can explore 77,000 feet of saltwater shoreline and 33,900 feet of freshwater shoreline—the latter thanks to the park's three lakes. Getting from one island to the other is also made simple via the Canoe Pass and Deception Pass bridges, which create "a gateway for exploration," the website states.

Deception Pass is the most visited state park in Washington, and that may very well be because of all that it has to offer. "There are plenty of activities in the park—hiking, boating, and even whale watching—I've spotted orcas the last two times I've gone hiking there!" Schmit shares
____________________

That first sentence is a tad dicey. Deception Pass State Park does not take up two islands. The park does not cover all of Whidbey Island and Fidalgo Island, just the north end of Whidbey and the south end of Fidalgo.

The only island the park totally takes up is the island the bridge crosses between the Canoe Pass span and the Deception Pass span.

Deception Pass State Park was likely my most frequent go to place when I lived in the neighborhood. On my last visit before moving to Texas, at the Rosario Beach area of the park, I saw a HUGE whale slowing moving along the shore, just a few feet out. Biggest whale I'd ever seen...