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Friday, May 22, 2009

Bass Lake Volunteer Fire Dept. BBQ Sunday

The Bass Lake Volunteer Fire Department annual Memorial Day BBQ is this Sunday, May 24th, at the Bass Lake Fire Department on Road 274 (next to the Government Center). Stop by from 11 am to 3pm for great food and drink. All proceeds from food sales benefit the volunteer fire department.

Annual Memorial Day Breakfast May 23rd

Joing the Amvets Post 1997 for their Annual Memorial Day Breakfast, Saturday morning at the Ole Kettle Restaurant beginning at 10am. Guest speakers and souvenirs. Space is limited so reserve your seats now!! Call Dave Wolin at 559-658-2281.

Coarsegold Peddler's Fair Begins Today

The Coarsegold Antique and Collectible Show begins today, going through the weekend and wrapping up Monday, May 25th. Take advantage of free admission and great on-site parking. Browse arts & crafts, collectibles and antiques. Lots of great food and refreshements. The Coarsegold Peddler's Fair is fun for the entire family!! Don't miss it!!

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Remember Them This Weekend

As the weather gradually grows warmer and another Memorial Day swiftly approaches, thoughts of barbecues and picnics begin to surface in our minds.

Many of us look forward with anticipation to the three-day weekend, taking advantage of the extra day off to do some traveling, or simply to catch up on some much needed relaxation. But more often than not, we forget what Memorial Day really means, and very rarely do we ask ourselves why we celebrate Memorial Day. Of course, those of you who have served in the armed forces or have family members who have done so are well aware of the history and meaning of Memorial Day, some of you painfully so. The media often makes a small comment in regards to why we celebrate Memorial Day, and newspapers often publish a small article, but otherwise the general consensus is that Memorial Day is a time for warm-weather fun and happy celebrations.

This is simply to remind those of you who need reminding that Memorial Day was originally not so much a celebration as it was a day of solemnity, a day of respect and remembrance for those who have served their country and have died doing so. Regardless of whether you support the current war or not, or even the previous wars throughout history, the fact remains that hundreds of thousands of soldiers went to war for the United States of America. They fought hard and they fought well, and they fought for reasons that may or may not have been righteous. But they pledged themselves to the cause, because they believed in the United States, and they believed in themselves as a soldier.

And they died for it.

Memorial Day was first established in 1868 in order to honor the soldiers who had fallen during the Civil War. It was initially only recognized by first New York and then the remainder of the northern states, and wasn't followed by the south until after World War I. While many states at that time typically had their own specific days of remembrance, (and some still do), Memorial Day became has become the national standard.

Unfortunately, over the years, many Americans, especially those who have been untouched by war and the strife it causes, have forgotten what Memorial Day truly means, despite the fact that "memorial" being the very title of the holiday is a pretty significant clue.

Many of my relatives served in WWII but I really never could comprehend or understand the sacrifices that they made until my husband and I attended the WWII Memorial Dedication in Washington DC. Thousands of veterans and their families flew to DC to attend the ceremony. We were honored enough to meet a Medal of Honor recipient on our flight from Denver to DC. It was truly awe inspiring to witness the respect, admiration and generosity bestowed upon these people throughout the week-long festivities. I can remember watching the ceremony at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier and crying my eyes out along with the hundreds of other people in attendance. The day of the actual dedication ceremony we sat among thousands of veterans and their families and the feeling of unity and patriotism was overwelming. It made my heart swell with joy and pride that I was blessed enough to attend such a historic event.

So, this weekend, take a few moments to remember why we celebrate Memorial Day. If you have a veteran in your family give him or her a call and thank them for everything that they have done for our country.

Monday, May 18, 2009

What Type of Hummingbird Are You?

What Type of Hummingbird Are You? Seem like an odd question to ask? Bear with me.

Yesterday was a day of relaxation. My husand and I spent some time splashing around the pool and lounging in the sun, enjoying the peace and quiet of the day. There was a pleasant breeze and I could smell the roses. Bella (my lab) joined in the fun by taking a dip in the pool and then commandeering a lounge chair for herself to dry off.

While soaking in some sun I became fascinated by the frantic activity of the hummingbirds at their feeders and I began to make some mental notes on their behavior. We have two feeders hanging from a large oak tree, with about 20 to 30 hummingbirds all fighting over who gets them. (The fact that they fight at all is hilarious. One or two hummingbirds consuming an entire feeder of nectar would be like my husband and I drinking the swimming pool!!) There is plenty for all but yet they quarrel and chase one another around, exerting so much energy that they have to fly up to a branch to take a rest from time to time.

I came to the conclusion that the hummingbirds fit into three categories.

The first category is the Alphas. The Alphas sit on a branch above the feeders and chase away any other birds that come near, including other species of birds who are simply flying through and minding their own business. They spend so much time fighting and quarreling with other birds that they have no time to take advantage of the nectar that is available to them.

The second category is the Conspirators. The Conspirators get together in a group and send one volunteer to divert the Alpha's attention. While the Alphas are busy chasing the diverters the other Conspirators feed frantically until the Alpha returns to her post.

The third category are the Producer's. The Producer's don't bother getting involved with all of the fighting and quarreling going on around them and they show very little interest in the feeders. Instead, they fly calmly from flower to flower in the yard (roses, petunias, jasmine, gardenia, sunflowers, daisies, lavendar, etc), taking their time and getting much more out of their actions than all of the Alpha's and Conspirators combined. They don't become focused on one flower; they tap all resources provided to them in their environment to fill their needs.

Simple and effective and no drama involved.

I jokingly told my husband that their behavior reminded me of working in Real Estate. People working on commission based income can generally be placed into one of the above categories. Of course, this is not limited to Real Estate. This behavior is being played out in sales offices around the world even as I write this article.

Every office has someone who wants all the business for themselves and will not hesitate to step on a co-worker to get it. Every office has a group of Conspirator's or pot stirrers as I like to call them. They are so busy forming cliches, conspiring amongst themselves, worrying about what everyone else in the office is doing and trying to figure out how to get more of the nectar that they ignore all of the resources around them. And then there are the Producers, the people that don't involve themselves in the office drama and gossip. They use their time and resources to make productive phone calls, emails and contacts all day. The producers are generally the one's that show up early, leave late and are always working on another project or deal.

I tend to think of myself as a Producer but I must admit that at times I have been sucked into the Conspirator's web. Once you are there it is difficult to extricate yourself without ticking someone off or hurting someones feelings.

I have made a point to avoid Alpha's. There is simply no good that ever comes from a relationship with an Alpha . Everything always is in the Alpha's favor and if it isn't, YOU end up being the bad guy. When I find myself in an Alpha's territory I smile and remain friendly, but always remember to watch my back.

So, what type of hummingbird are you? Not such a silly question after all, is it?

Possible Thunderstorms This Afternoon

With moisture streaming across California this morning we may get some thunderstorm activity this afternoon. Believe it or not, heavy downpours are expected with the storm activity. Forestry and CDF will be on alert for any brush fires caused by lightning.