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Below are the 20 most recent journal entries recorded in Jim Skipper's LiveJournal:

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Friday, September 2nd, 2016
10:10 pm
Photos of Clarrissa and Tyler's new son, Ethan, soon after his birth one month ago.
Tyler and Clarrissa needed a ride to the hospital, and we were happy to get to take them. We had to get up early to get to Angleton to pick them up and have them to the hospital in Galveston by 8:00 am. The doctor convinced Clarrissa that another C-section would be better than trying to induce a natural birth. That meant things could go on pretty quickly, and Ethan was there by 9:54 am. I had lunch with Tyler and got a sandwich for Ann, but we were so tired we went back home after lunch.

Friday, April 18th, 2014
1:17 pm
Buttered Carrots
I wondered why carrot slices from a can didn't taste like the carrots my mother made. I just assumed that it was the difference between canned and garden fresh. I had heard of buttered carrots, and it finally occurred to me that something should be added to the canned carrots. I added 1/2 cup of brown sugar, 2 tbs of margarine, and a little salt to season the margarine. The carrots taste great!
12:56 pm
Texas Longhorn at the Burton Cotton Gin Festival
Texas Longhorn

Annual "Cows for Kathy" photo.
Tuesday, February 18th, 2014
1:15 pm
Early Signs of Spring
The Arizona Ash trees usually are the first to bud in spring. Occasionally they are 'burned' by a late frost.
Arizona Ash Buds
Arizona Ash Buds
Arizona Ash Buds

I noticed that this 'wax leaf' ligustrum was also budding.
Wax Leaf Ligustrum
Monday, February 17th, 2014
6:03 pm
Early Spring Action
I bought a fresh container of gasoline, fired up the mower, and did a little early lawn trimming. However, I soon hit a little stump hidden in a clump of grass and bent the mower blade. I'll work on that tomorrow.
Saturday, January 11th, 2014
4:11 pm
So How Hot Was It Today?
The high today was 75.2 (24 degrees C). The sky was clear blue, the sun was bright, and there was a light breeze. Great for outdoor activities.
10:41 am
Just How Cold Did It Get?
Here on the upper Texas Gulf Coast my digital outdoor thermometer recorded a low of 29.5 degrees F. However, as I drove around at dawn that morning, my car inlet air temperature indicator showed temperatures of 26 to 29. My home temperature sensor may be protected from extreme conditions. It was cold enough for unprotected delicate plants to freeze. I hope they were killed.
Monday, January 6th, 2014
3:43 pm
Weather Report for the Upper Gulf Coast of Texas
A cool front came through last night. The low temperature at our house was about 30 degrees Fahrenheit. It was cold enough to freeze the water in the bird bath solid for the second time since Christmas. However, water in a metal pan on the ground had just a thin layer of ice. It was back above freezing by 9:00 a.m. and rose to about 40 in the afternoon. It's supposed to be even colder tomorrow with temperatures below freezing for up to 12 hours.
Tuesday, December 24th, 2013
9:08 am
A Quiet December?
The water in the bird bath froze solid last night. My outdoor thermometer recorded a low of only 34 degrees. It's installed under the roof overhang on the north side of the house, and that would protect it from the cold, clear sky. The structure of the house may retain a little heat and that would keep the sensor warmer. The bird bath is under the open sky and well above the warmer ground, then evaporation from the water could drop the temperature a little. I'd still like to see the true temperature recorded on the thermometer.

Was December a slow month or was it occupied with church issues?

We will attend the church Christmas program tonight and then meet our children and some of our grandchildren at our daughter and son-in-law's house afterward for a Christmas gift exchange.
Wednesday, November 27th, 2013
8:39 pm
Some of the Activities of the Day
I started the laundry first thing this morning. When it was finished I took a shopping list to Wal-Mart to get the final ingredients for the dressing (stuffing), sweet potato casserole, and broccoli salad that we're taking as our part of the Thanksgiving dinner at John and Madi's tomorrow.

When I got back I cooked a big pan of cornbread for the dressing.

I went out to see that
The sun was shining on the sea,
Shining with all his might:
He did his very best to make
The billows smooth and bright —
And this was odd, because it was
The middle of the night.
No that was the poem; we aren't that near the sea, and it wasn't the middle of the night. However, the sun WAS shinning with all his might, so I headed around the house for a 30-minute walk. There was about an inch of water still covering a low place on my trail, so I decided to shovel dirt from a nearby dirt pile to level the area. Thirty minutes of shoveling and leveling dirt burns more calories than walking anyway.

I warmed a can of chili for lunch.

We got a late call for Ann's apple cider punch, so it was back to Wal-Mart for cider and the other ingredients that make the punch.

I'll be up early to mix and bake the casserole, and by then Ann will have the dressing ready for the oven. It will be second so that it is piping hot when we leave for John and Madi's.
Monday, September 16th, 2013
12:27 pm
It's Still Hot Here Along the Gulf Goast of Texas ...
... so I'll post the highest daytime high and the lowest night time low for the first half of September: 97.9/73.8.
Saturday, August 31st, 2013
5:51 pm
The Barracuda is still running well
We made a 30-mile circuit going through Friendswood, Alvin, and Manvel then back to central Pearland via the old Massey Highway then Bailey Rd to pass by the high schools with a loop through Independence Park.
4:12 pm
Well, Why Not Post Daytime High and Nighttime Low Again
Highest daytime temperature in the second half of August - 96.8
Lowest night time temperature - 74.1

The Chinese tallow trees are beginning to lose leaves.
Monday, August 19th, 2013
9:11 am
Just for the Record
Once again I'll post high and low temperatures - it's a habit.

Highest daytime high for the first 18 days of August: 98.4
Lowest nighttime low for the first 18 nights of August: 72.3
Tuesday, August 6th, 2013
11:49 am
Recorded Music
My favorite new music album is "A Holiday Carole" by Carole King. Her daughter, Louise Goffin, helped with the production and wrote or arranged some of the songs. My son, Louis, gave me the album for Christmas 2011. It a while to get around to playing it, but it has music that is enjoyable all year long.

One of my favorite songs on the album is "Christmas Paradise." How can you not like a Christmas song that begins:
"Snow cones in the sun, and palm trees swaying;
Down on the beach Feliz Navidad is playing."

It includes this phrase: "Aqui en el Paraiso" which doesn't look like much, but really sounds nice with the song's melody.

The song contrasts the traditional Christmas things they are missing with things that might be part of a celebration in the tropics:
"No crackling fire or chestnuts roasting,
But we got some coconuts and rum for toasting.
Don't need a snowman; we'll build castles in the sand.

My Uncle Irving and Aunt Nila Skipper gave me a record player and some of their old 78 rpm music albums one Christmas long ago. I don't think I ever bought a new 78 rpm record though. Those 78 rpm record albums where like photograph albums except that instead of pages for photos, they had paper envelope pages that held a record. I think some of them may have held six records for a total of 12 songs. One of the albums they gave me was the Bing Crosby album of music from "Holiday Inn" which preceded "White Christmas."

Album Assortment
I've seen the evolution of music albums, but have not moved on to mp3 or digital downloads.
10:57 am
Morning Activities
After my computer time with coffee, I got up to do my walking exercise and noticed that the laundry basket was full, so I put that in the washer before I went out to walk.

I've been trying to walk at least 30 minutes every day except Sunday. Today I carried my “Good” dumbbells – 15 lbs each – for half of that 30 minutes, alternating rounds.

The laundry still wasn't ready for the dryer when I got back in, so I had an early lunch – leftover beans and cornbread from supper last night. I had warmed up the can of beans and crumbled some Jimmy Dean pre-cooked sausage patties in and added some Jalapeno peppers, but it didn't seem to make much difference in the taste.

Now it's time to put the clothes in the dryer. (Clothes don't do well drying outdoors here near the Gulf Coast; they tend to mildew before they get dry.
Monday, August 5th, 2013
6:13 pm
Temperature Reports Are Getting Old
However, since the weather report says it "feels like" 103 here in Pearland, I'll mention that my temperature sensor displays 94.3. The humidity certainly is high though, and it was a little higher than 94 around 3:00.

The highest daytime high the last half of July was 99.0 and the lowest nighttime low was 74.3.

I lost the record for the first half of July when I had to change batteries. However, I believe I saw a recorded high of 100.1.

Most days I notice a high of 96 to 98.
10:21 am
Lying In Wait for Squirrels
Missy In Tree
Missy knows they'll be back.
(But it will be long after she has given up and come down from the tree.)
Saturday, August 3rd, 2013
1:03 pm
Grand Canyon Trip
Click Here to see page of pictures from the El Paso Station to Tucson.

Amtrak train and El Paso depot
Thursday, August 1st, 2013
3:42 pm
Grand Canyon Trip
I've put together another page of photographs from our Grand Canyon trip. This are from the train ride from Houston almost to El Paso.
Becky took this nice photo of the "Sunset" display sign at the Houston Amtrak Station.
Sunset Sign

Click here to view the page.
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