Thursday, June 22, 2017

Division Street is Closed



My water aerobics classes
had started when
I was still out of town.

I've gone everyday this week
except today.
Each member of the class
including the instructor
faced a new challenge yesterday.
Division is getting a makeover.


I don't know that it had even been
worth it.  The air was cold before
we got in.  The wind against
our wet bodies made it feel even
colder.

I guess I still had time to go
if I had not continued with this post, and
if the road is finished, but only if I
didn't have to wait for the construction
workers to direct me.


I was reminded of this commercial
When I approached the elderly lady
dressed from head to foot in fire engine
yellow - almost like the government
descending on Elliot's family in
the movie E.T.
It's a long way around and
will be late for certain should
I choose to go that way.



Probably I should go for
a walk in the park.  Perhaps
I should have gone this morning
before I took my assessment.

I am so tired all of the time.
I went outside to do some weeding
and watered the plants.
Roland asked me to plant the
cantaloupe.  That wore me out.

I was awake for a while.  Searching
for answers for assessment put
me back in a coma. As
soon as I post this to my blog
I will go in the kitchen and
do dishes and then
I will go through many boxes of
clutter to see what might be
keepable and what can be
donated for the citywide yard sale.


Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Riddle Rocks


More from The News Review – representing Douglas County





Riddle is moving forward with a plan to reopen its library and even check out books.

The smaller branches that were once part of the Douglas County Library System shut down April 1, victims of the financial crisis faced by county government. While the county’s Library Futures Task Force continues to search for a long-term solution, many cities have come to the conclusion their best bet, at least for now, is to take charge of their own libraries.

Previously, libraries had been told by the county they could reopen, but only as reading rooms. Under that model, county-owned books would remain with each branch, but would have to be read on site and couldn’t be checked out. The county would no longer provide a computer catalog.

But Riddle began looking into a way around that. It’s been investigating smaller computer catalog services it could contract with on its own, and it sought an intergovernmental agreement with the county that would allow it to provide its own catalog and resume checking out books.

Monday, the Douglas County Board of Commissioners approved Riddle’s proposal.

Rita Radford, director of library services for the Riddle City Library, said Monday she anticipates Riddle will become a model for other cities that want to reopen their libraries but aren’t satisfied with the reading room approach.

Radford said Riddle will be able to use the county’s computers, scrubbed of the county’s software, and acquire catalog software of its own. The city, which owns the library building, will provide internet and Wi-Fi service.

Radford said most of the other library branches have expressed interest in following suit. Riddle is forging ahead with the approval of its city council, which is eager to have the library reopen.

Riddle’s reopening is planned for 3 p.m. June 6, and a full slate of summer programs for kids is in the works. It includes a gardening program with Master Gardeners, story telling, music, a Peter and the Wolf musical presentation, a puppet show called “Dogs to the Rescue,” and a rock painting “extravaganza.” Family events will include a pre-solar-eclipse party and a professional magic show.

“It’s going to be a lot of fun,” Radford said.

The library has a list of about 40 volunteers, who will keep the library open five hours each Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday.

Radford is a volunteer herself, though she was formerly a paid library assistant.

“It’s a passion for me. I just love the library and I want to see it continue and be a help to the community,” she said.

Radford said she’s very thankful Riddle received the go ahead to work toward checking out books.

“The reading room is a cute little idea, but it doesn’t serve the public very well,” she said. “Very, very few people have the time to sit down and read at the library. Most of them would rather go home and read in their pajamas.”

Three libraries — Reedsport, Oakland and Sutherlin — have reopened already, and several more plan to reopen this summer. The Reedsport branch, now called the Reedsport Public Library, has also requested an agreement with the county that would allow it to check out books. At this time, though, it can’t afford the cost of a cataloging system, according to City Manager Jonathan Wright. Both Oakland and Sutherlin have begun local book collections so that some books can be checked out.

The Roseburg branch remains open until the end of the month.


  • The News-Review Editorial Board
  • May 11, 2017

Unwilling to see their libraries die, community members and city leaders in those towns were ready to reopen virtually the day their libraries closed down. They had dozens of volunteers signed up to staff their libraries. In Sutherlin, for example, where the library shutdown lasted a single day, a team of 50 volunteers has signed up to keep the library open as many hours as before closure. While they aren’t checking out the county-owned books, they’ve collected several hundred of their own that they are checking out. Reedsport plans to put its own regional district up for a vote this November. Riddle, which plans a June reopening, and Reedsport are working on obtaining catalog systems so they can check out the county-owned books at their branches. These cities have become examples that others, including Roseburg, should seriously consider following.

Libraries in some communities remain closed, awaiting some action from the county. It’s their patrons who have suffered from that miscalculation, and if Roseburg doesn’t move very quickly, their library patrons will suffer as well. A community without a library is a poorer, and ultimately a dumber one. Roseburg owes it to its citizens to give them what they voted for — a library whose doors remain open. We hope to see a solid plan for how to do that emerge as soon as possible.



Sutherlin, Oakland and Reedsport have been more proactive. They’ve opened their libraries again as reading rooms, by using all-volunteer staffing, and Riddle this week gained permission from the county to pursue obtaining its own cataloging system so it could check out books once it reopens in June.



Sutherlin, Oakland and Reedsport libraries have already reopened, with intergovernmental agreements (IGAs) signed with the county. The IGAs are necessary because while all the cities outside Roseburg own their library buildings, the county owns the books. Sutherlin is open the same hours as before the branch closures, with volunteer staffing, while Oakland is open on Fridays. Reedsport has even gathered enough money to keep a paid librarian, at least for the next three months.

Yoncalla has signed an IGA to reopen as a “reading room plus,” as has Riddle. The “plus” allows these libraries to check out books if they acquire their own catalog systems. Riddle plans to reopen at 3 p.m. June 6. Glendale is close to getting an IGA signed. It plans to reopen in the summer, and have a bookworm mascot, and a summer reading program. It’s short on volunteers and money, but plans to publicize its grand opening with a poster campaign and a Fourth of July parade float. Myrtle Creek has an active group of 50 volunteers and has formed a nonprofit to raise funds. It hopes to have the library reopened by July 1.

Winston and Canyonville do not yet have plans to reopen their libraries. Winston leaders are concerned about a shortage of volunteers.

Drain has scheduled two community meetings at 7 p.m. May 25 and 2 p.m. June 3 at the Drain Civic Center, 205 West A Ave. to determine what residents want to do about the library. The city has had offers of financial donations, but is short on volunteers.



         Riddle had their grand-opening and library kick off the day that Jeanie passed away.  Jenna and I had gone to the library on the first as she had a dentist appointment and we were already in the area anyway. She signed up for the summer reading program though she is already doing one through school and will be doing one through Myrtle Creek.  I was told I could sign up for a library card but that it would cost eight dollars (as we don’t reside in Riddle) We’d like to incorporate Myrtle Creek, Canyonville and Riddle to operate together and thought I would weigh it out. 

Roland told me to go ahead and get a card so that I could check out some audio books to listen to on the road.  I wish he had gone to pick them out himself.  He always ends up making an audio book purchase as I don’t do well with selection – not that there was much to choose from.  Mostly Nora Roberts collection which I just didn’t think he’d be interested in. 

Myrtle Creek's summer kick off does not start until July 3.  At this point we don't even know where that will be as the city has not made a commitment for location.  But I will save that for another post.  Oh, we’re not done.  There is and will be more.


Tuesday, June 20, 2017

The Drive To and Return


                As mentioned in this post,  I thought Highway 140 was quite beautiful at some parts and quite scary at others.  The idea of a 50 foot drop and no guard rails is rather creepy.  But that is the way Roland wanted to go - and he was driving.

                I thought 140 seemed scarier driving north than it did driving south - which is ironic, as the drop is on the south/west side.  The drive didn't seem quite as long, either.  But Denise and I had taken I5 through Medford because she wanted to see the temple.  I just  had Roland go by way of Highway 138 to Highway 97 where you can choose to go north up through Bend and over through Boise, or you can drive down south to Lake View and Winnemucca.  

                The Nevada route is only about 30 minutes faster than going through Idaho - provided there isn't any construction or other barriers that might interfere with the normal route, but going south requires a lot more traction and winding - which I somehow didn't believe our car could handle.  But it did.  There were many who'd been praying for our safety and we made good timing, I think.

                Jeanie passed away on the 6th and our plan was to leave on the 7th.  It was Jenna's final week of school and she'd been planning on dressing up for each day.  She'd been looking forward to her final week of school this year and to watch her 8th grade friends graduate.  She cried when Roland told her that she would not return to school.  


                I was appalled at Jenna's behavior - obviously thinking more about the inconvenience of her own plans than for thinking about her brother and the grief that he may be suffering.  Death is rarely convenient for any of us.  I did talk Roland into allowing her to go to school one last time.  We still needed to go to Roseburg to get a rental car and bring it back to the house in order to pack it up.  There is ALWAYS a delay when Roland plans things.  Wednesday was an early day, and we could check her out even earlier if we needed to.  There was no sense for ALL of us to go to Roseburg, and I didn't want to watch Jenna idling any time that she could have spent at school.




                We had made arrangements to pick the car up between 8:00 and 8:30.  We were contacted by the rental company just before we left the house.  We were told the car would not be available until later and that they would contact us.  We had planned to go to Roseburg on some other errands - the delay of the rental would make things easier - I thought.  Roland could do all the driving and we wouldn't have to worry about the second car. 

                The rental company never called back, and so we decided to just go there.  There had been five people waiting for rental cars.  All the cars that were supposed to be available were still out - all the cars that were on the lot that looked like they might be available had expired tags.  We had tried other options, but are actually limited in Roseburg and didn't want to gamble on driving another 90 miles to a larger city if we might encounter the same problem with another rental car company. We still didn't have a car when Jenna returned home from school and so said a major prayer and ended up taking our own.

                The GPS was taking us through Sutherlin, but I knew we could get through on 138 which was in the opposite direction.  We probably wasted a half hour driving back and forth before we finally got on route.  Our daughter-in-law, Carrie, commented that our disability of getting out of Oregon sounded like the makings for a sitcom.

                Roland said he would return through Boise and Bend. 

  
                We passed many orange barrells. 


No workers or slowdowns - probably due to the wind - except for after crossing the border from Idaho into Oregon.  Loose gravel caused us to slow down.   Tar was being poured ahead.  There was actually a utility truck  with its flashing lights that led the cars in either direction - I think it was at least a mile long.  I'm not exaggerating.  It wasn't bad.  It had been the only slow down of the entire trip. 

                Once we got to Hines, we stopped at a Dairy Queen to have lunch.

Monday, June 19, 2017

Reasons to Hate June

               Two years ago this month, we were contacted by a property rental with availability.  I have a friend who had said she'd be driving to Newport the following day.  I talked her into leaving a day early so that I could ride with her and she could take me to my destination. 

                Two years ago we parted ways.  After securing the rental, Denise dropped me off at the gas station where I planned - and eventually did catch a bus.  I was somewhere between Boise and Salt Lake June 6, 2015 when my brother called to let me know of my Uncle's passing.

                Facebook memories have provided memories of the trip and of Uncle Ross's passing.  My daughter-in-law Jeanie passed away exactly two years later.  She is the third child of her mom and dad to pass away within the last eight years.  Her brother and sister had each been 32 when they passed.  Jeanie would have been 34.  All three children died in June.

                After the funeral, Jeanie's mom had invited everyone to their house for "refreshments" - it was more like a potluck meal.  Jeanie's dad announced that Jeanie's mom might have to leave as her father is in the hospital with cancer and was taking a turn for the worst (although leaving your mortal body is sometimes really not the worst - though that is often how it's expressed) but she was still there when it came time for us to leave.

                Roland's sister and husband grilled Jeanie's parents to make certain that Biff would be alright.  They seemed satisfied which I was grateful because it helped back up my own thoughts which I had tried to relate to Roland (I am much better at sorting my thoughts out on paper than verbally in my head).  We came home without Biff or Ally - which is fine.  I truly believe that Biff needs his space right now that Roland unintentionally might not allow.  Biff has to cope at his own pace - not anybody elses.  His in-laws have at least been through this before.

                Biff didn't know that it is proper to ask others to participate with the funeral - assigning them pall bearer or for prayer or whatever.  Randy, Tony and Roland all fulfilled their roles without question.  None of them knew they were involved until they saw their names on the program. 

                We listened to a program on the way home.  The speaker was relating an experience where a man had been away from his family for three years.  "Three years is a long time"  Jeanie and Biff were married three years ago in April.  "Three years is not a very long time".



Sunday, June 18, 2017

It was so Windy, it blew off Jack's eyes


                I don't dislike Jack-in-the-Box but I can't say I'm an avid fan of their food.  Jack-in-the-Box does not exist in Salt Lake, and so the only time I've been is while vacationing on the west coast and it just happens to be convenient.  We've been to the one in Roseburg a few times, but not very often, which makes me wonder how it is we had even ended up with three antenna balls.  Jenna and Roland like them because it somehow makes our car easier to spot.  Well, I don't have radar eyes and if it is smaller than the tire, it is not big enough for my non-observant eyes to spot.
                The wind blew each day during our trip except for the Friday we went to Wheeler Farm.  That day was hot.  I suppose if I had a choice, I would take the wind.  I don't guess it would have mattered.  I would have probably felt comatose either way.  Roland says it takes 10 days to acclimatized.  I'd forgotten about the adjustment we had gone through during those first couple of weeks after we had arrived in Oregon.  Must just have an effect on older people however.  Jenna's body certainly didn't seem to notice.

                It just feels so weird to me that after having lived in a state for over 50 years that I would need a longer time to adjust to being there than my vacation time would allow.  Who would have believed I'd be wiped out so quickly?  In addition to dry throats and fatigue, I was experiencing heat rash.  That was a new one for me.

                Our first day on the road landed us in the small town of Lake View.  The wind was blowing really hard. 
I asked the waitress if it was normal.  She seemed a little freaked about it when she answered,

                "NO!  Not even in March.  That's when we get the most wind.  But nothing like this!"

                I don't think it was windy when we'd gone through Nevada.  But it wasn't as hot as I think of Nevada as normally being. Although it was windy in Salt Lake, it wasn't as windy as it had been during our travel.  Especially on the return back to Oregon.  Once the rain stopped, Roland was hanging onto the wheel trying to keep the car on the road.  I asked him if he felt like he was driving through the eye of the storm.  He said yes.
          Tractor Trailers (another name for Semi-Trucks or 18wheelers; a name I actually never understood until watching them moving with the wind) would pass us by and the "trailer" part would be swinging all over the road.


               I saw a green mile sign that was bent in half (couldn't even read how far apart what towns they were as the information was upside down)


                I think the face of our first Jack antenna  ball we had just faded in the sun.  But Roland claims that the wind blew them off sometime during our travels. 

Saturday, June 17, 2017

In an Instant . . . Plans Change

Biff works as a security guard
He gets bored patrolling and
calls us often.
Just a week and a half ago
he mentioned an upcoming weekend getaway.

His in-laws were planning on taking him,
his wife, and the Spending Time in the pool
with Jeanie and Ally.
He had made arrangements for
getting the time off from work.

He was home when Jeanie fell.
He couldn't get to her quickly enough.
The autopsy showed that she had
a clot in her lung.
Perhaps that is what caused her
to fall.

We had planned to visit with family members
in Utah the second week in August.
We have two granddaughters turning two
that month.
Carrie had called Jeanie on a Monday to ask
if she wanted to celebrate the girls' birthdays
at the same time
before our return to Oregon.
The following Monday we were all at
Jeanie's funeral.

Biff held Ally over the casket for
one final view.
Ally held out her arms and called, "Mommy"
one last time.
I watched Ally watch the lid being closed
over her mother.




Friday, June 16, 2017

Libraries; News Review Rocks


"As a result of declining timber receipt and dwindling reserve funds the Board is tasked with making very difficult decisions to ensure that basic public safety needs and other essential services for the community are met." stated County Commissioner Chris Boice.

Those are the last words found on the Douglas County Library home page.  The web page may appear to offer more  options, but they are no longer linked to anything.  It's a dead page.

This was the caption on November 30, 2016 Charlotte Herbert wrote the following letter to the News Review Editor:

 Stop the talk, vote for the library

          " How can anyone think library supporters have not thoroughly explored ALL funding solutions? Library staff and supporters have been thinking about alternative funding for 20 years. Ever since 1996, when repeated budget cuts made our libraries fall below minimum standards.
            "Can we use volunteers? Josephine County now funds and operates its four branches by relying on many volunteers. This is so unworkable that both staff and volunteers are now planning a May 2017 ballot measure like ours. Can cities pay more? Not one city has stepped forward in the past five years to help Douglas County run the library. Can't donors step in? We have donors, but they do not fund operations, just "extras," like new books.
            "The Save Our Libraries Committee has boxes of research on libraries and how to fund them. They've done countless interviews. They've held countless public meetings . . ."

           To add to that concern, this was posted on November 19, 2016:     
                     "Once upon a time, we were so dedicated to improving our community that we as a county banded together to form a single library system. It was well funded and fully staffed by professional librarians. The branches were open often enough that people could visit them regularly. And a beautiful new library was built to house the Roseburg branch, in part thanks to generous donations from the Ford family.
            "It was emblematic of a time when we looked forward, planned for the future, invested in our kids, valued learning.

            "It’s a good story, yes? But it may turn out to have a very unhappy ending. The voters’ rejection of a library district this month, we may well be facing the demise of the Douglas County Library System.

            "Since you are reading this editorial right now, we assume you are generally in favor of literacy." 


On November 30, 2016 Carisa Cegavske, Senior Staff Writer for The News Review wrote:

            "There were tears from a Glide teacher who said she “just can’t believe people failed” a library district measure earlier this month, and cheers for the father of a home-schooled girl who raised money for the library through a bake sale."
            It's not that voters were opposed to keeping libraries opened so much as it was against paying even more in taxes.  Evidently the city of Sutherlin had already opted out before the bill was proposed.  Property taxes were/are too high before the bill.   

          There was talk about Reedsport possibly joining forces with Coos County, which seemed to make sense in my mind.  It always appeared to be disjointed whenever I looked at the map





          It actually takes less time for us to get to Coos Bay than to Reedsport - not that I've ever been to Reedsport.  I was told that it is over a two hour drive. 


by KCBY Tuesday, March 28th 2017
“The Reedsport library is one of the most important places in Reedsport.” [says Reedport's librarian Sue Cousineau]


Cousineau is also optimistic.


“The Reedsport library will be here one way or another because the people in this area care so much about their library.”

Cousineau will stay on through April to help volunteers set up their reading room. Then, after 13 years running the Reedsport Library, she’ll be out of a job.
 I provided a link for this next article in this post       



MYRTLE CREEK — The Myrtle Creek branch of the Douglas County Library System closed its doors Thursday.

In its final hours, library patrons read and talked, used the computers and collected books, as a documentary film crew from San Francisco’s Serendipity Films moved around them, gathering stories for a film on the history of the American public library and the challenges those libraries face today.
And the challenges in Myrtle Creek and Douglas County are very, very real. The county government, strapped for cash, announced it would be unable to fund the county libraries through the end of the year. A November ballot measure that would have created a library district tax to keep the libraries opened was rejected by voters. Subsequently, the closure dates were announced — April 1 for the 10 rural branches and May 31 for the main branch in Roseburg. A task force has been convened to seek a long-term funding solution.

Meanwhile, library boards, city councilors and a host of book-loving volunteers are scrambling to fill the breach in Myrtle Creek and other cities around the county.

There’s been a library in Myrtle Creek in some form for 105 years, and quite a few town residents say they have no intention of giving it up. Already, 35 volunteers have signed up to work shifts at the library and they plan to reopen it on July 1.

On Thursday, the prevailing mood at the library was sadness.

Karen Rivera, mother of 12-year-old Jaime Rivera, wiped away tears as she talked about what the loss meant to her and her daughter. It was hard enough adjusting to a small library open only part-time after they moved here from Salt Lake City a couple years ago. She and Jaime were reading the book “Zillah and Me” together Thursday. They’ve been reading together since Jaime was born.

“I’m really bummed,” Karen Rivera said. “The library offered a way for us to get together, to feed our minds. We’ve always been a poor family, and being able to go to the library programs has given our family something to do for free.”

“Being able to borrow books from the library to gain information, that was awesome,” Jaime said. “Now this is going to be ripped away from us, and it sucks.”

This wasn’t Marilyn Brouillard’s first rodeo, though. Brouillard, longtime volunteer and incidentally the mayor’s wife, lived in Redding, California, almost 30 years ago when the Shasta County Library System closed down.

Back then, her son checked out a collection of books beginning with the words “The Last.” On Thursday, Brouillard copied his example.

She checked out 10 books with titles like “The Last Star,” “The Last Sin Eater,” “The Last Battle,” and “The Last Apocalypse.”

She doesn’t know if she’ll get to read them all before the final book return date of April 25.

“I just never thought I’d go through this a second time,” she said.

 She said she’s impressed, though, by the number of people who have signed up to volunteer.

Myrtle Creek Librarian Hannah Merrill is out of a job, but said she tried her best to make the library’s last day a happy one for the people who love it. She said she plans to return to school to get an English degree, and would like to become a fiction editor.

“I’ve always had a love for books,” she said.

Connie Earp wondered where the children would go. The library is a source of knowledge for them, she said, and she loves watching their little faces light up during story time.

To have that disappear, she said, “it’s just the saddest thing.”

Five-year-old Jameson Bury clutched a book about dinosaurs as his mother wondered what they’d do until the library reopened with an all-volunteer staff in July. His mother said she visits the library every week with Jameson and his little brother.

“I can’t read library books for story time any more,” Jameson said. Asked if that made him feel sad, he nodded.

“I’m really depressed about it,” Melissa Bury said. “They’ve grown up with this library. It’s someplace we really love to come.”

          Carissa had already left when the Myrtle Creek Library board members held their final meeting (see here)

          On April 30, 2017 News Review gave us this story headline:


WINCHESTER — Umpqua Community College is inviting the public to visit its library. As Douglas County commissioners move forward with plans to close the county’s sole remaining library in Roseburg, UCC wants the community to know its library is still an option for people who love books.

“We just want the public to know they still have a place to go and check out books,” McGeehon said.

The library is open from 7:30 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Thursday, and 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Fridays. The library is not open on weekends. For more information, call 541-440-4640.

HBO put out this news segment video: 



          Some cities have been working at creating a library or at least offering a reading room strictly staffed by volunteers.  The city of Riddle has continued to fund their building.  As Jenna had a dentist appointment in Riddle about a week before we went out of town, we stopped by and she signed up for their summer reading program - even though Myrtle Creek will also be sponsoring a reading program in addition to Coffenberry Middle School. 

Thursday, June 15, 2017

Wheeler Farm


        I grew up in the Midvale East 4th ward (Church boundary) and each year the members would drive to storm mountain for an annual bbq dinner and ward party.  There were always a variety of activities offered to each age group - though the teenagers (for the most part) would forego any planned activity and try their hand at hiking to Doughnut Falls - and often succeeding.






         Before Kayla was born, the location had changed from Big Cottonwood Canyon to Wheeler Farm - which actually was a shorter drive and more family oriented, but not totally a big hit with the teenagers.  We hadn't taken into account that Wheeler Farm was a safer and more practical area overall.

  
I have seen this photo attached to two blogs; I don't 
know who to give credit to for taking it. I think it's
a great representation but I will remove the picture
if the artist asks me to.  

        I think I appreciated it more after I became a mother.  I have many scrapbook pages of Jenna and Wheeler Farm all from different years.  Her most favorite thing to visit was (and I think still is) the farm equipment.






         On Friday, Randy had suggested that spend some time there as it is free and it would perhaps help Biff to cope and move on.  It was the only overly warm day we had this last week.  It was the only day when the wind wasn't blowing. 

  




        Tony and Rochelle had been unwilling or unable to meet us as her brother was getting married the following day and then moving out to Pennsylvania.  Bittersweet memories of when Tony and Rochelle moved to Texas right after they were married. 
in addition to the tractors, Jenna has always had her picture
taken as she looks through window in the clubhouse
closeup of her and the two nieces who accompanied us


There were many things I hadn't seen before including this; 
Jenna was in Granite School District the entire time we lived in Utah