June 9, 2004

I started writing this yesterday and it was so boring, I couldn't stand to write it any more, much less subject you wonderful folks to reading it. 

There isn't much to report, so I'll likely just be rambling.  The weekend was lovely overall.  On Saturday, Eric worked in the morning and I cleaned house and otherwise relaxed. On Sunday, I stocked us up on groceries for the first time in weeks.  We've mostly just been getting enough to get by on for a few days at a time.  Now, we're pretty week set for the month with just a few stops for milk, bread, etc.

I walked to the post office on Monday because new books were in to review and they were too big for the mailbox.  The boys were good on the walk but about half way, I seriously doubted my own sanity for doing this AGAIN.  I took a different route there, but the same route back as before.  My feet were killing me yesterday morning.  Not enough motrin before and after, I'm thinking.  They are all better now. I'll be so glad when I've lost enough weight that they don't hurt any more.  I've heard lots of testimonials of people whose heel spurs when away when they dropped a lot of weight.

Can't wait for the new exercise ball!  I miss it.  Mine finally died for good.  I tried to use it on Saturday and ended up with a strained arm/pec muscle.  It throbbed for most of the day and I thought I was having a heart attack until I figured out what it was (thanks to Eric).  After that, I've gone with the walking and biking (exercise, not regular, that's coming) to give the shoulder a rest.  There haven't really been any noticeable changes yet, but I'm plugging long, figuring it can't hurt and must be doing SOMETHING somewhere!

I am convinced that my postal team (a mother and daughter who deliver the mail in this area) don't deliver every day that they're supposed to.  It happened a week or so ago and then yesterday, I had my mail out at 11am (mail runs around 3pm), flag up and it's still there.  I know that I have Netflix movies coming and they should have arrived yesterday.  Oh, the joy of country living!  My trash bill payment is the item in the mailbox, too!

So now that we've covered that riveting information...  zzzzz

Eric's new passion has surfaced very suddenly.  It seems he fancies himself a gold panner.  A little (and I mean requiring very little) investigating reveals that there is still a great bit of gold being hauled out of these mountains, which were the main focus for the gold rush in 1800's.  Grizzly Flats was a bustling town back then (it has since burned to the ground 3 times, so little remains of the old west) and the population was far greater than it is now (about 1189 or so).  History info is here:


The history is not only still rich, even after the fires and structural loss, but it's everywhere and very nearly palpable.  There are places here where time ceases to exist.  Eric found one such place the other day.  He took the boys to the river, which around here, when you talk about "the river," it's the Consumnes River.  They found a nice little spot where Eric could pan and the kids could play.  They started talking to another family there who told them about a different place.  They had nothing better to do, so went to check it out.  It was a wonderland with a natural waterfall, large granite rock to dive off of, crystal clear waters (COLD water, though) and no sign of civilization even though they were just barely off the beaten path.  There was silence except for the waterfall. 

After enjoying that place for a while (Eric's words were "I could not have created this place even in my imagination"), he decided on Monday to investigate a mineral mining claim.  Mining claims are still big business here and most people who aren't locals don't know they even exist any more.  He went to the Bureau of Land Management and learned a good bit about mining claims.  For one thing, one mining claim covers 20 acres of federally owned land.  If you stake a mining claim over that land, you essentially "own" the federal land and can build on it, mortgage it, etc.  You can do anything except keep other people from using it recreationally.  You CAN, however, shoot people who take gold or other minerals from your 20 acres.  To stake a mining claim costs just over $100 per year.  Any gold or other minerals mined from that area are then yours, whether it is mined from the earth or panned from the river.  Eric learned from the BLM that there is only ONE (1) 20 acre parcel left in this area. 

Guess where it is?

You got it.  It's the exact area that Eric and the boys went to that was beyond his imagination.  From where the river runs, then ten acres on either side.  Eric went there last night to post his claim signs and a old man was there who used to mine and pan that very place.  He told Eric no one had worked the area in more than 15 years and that there was plenty of gold in the river and gold and quartz (as in crystal as in remember I'm a Witch, cha cha, cha) all through the hills.  So Eric is very happy and the claim made a great Father's Day present.  We couldn't afford it by a long shot, but he wanted it so much that I had to find a way to make room for it.  He didn't ask and didn't expect it, but I knew I had to make it happen.  David (my son) has vowed that if he has to search thrift shops all over Sacramento, he WILL find Eric a Jed Clampett hat.

So yeah, my sweetheart is a goldminin' man.  :)  I love how passionate he is about things.  His enthusiasm lets me live by proxy without getting so tired out.  (ha ha)  Here are pictures of his claim (these are all thumbnails, so click if you want a larger picture):

Also, as promised, pictures of Delena's wonderful haircut!  Isn't she amazingly gorgeous!

I also want to mention that I had to wait for the camera to DRY OUT before I could download these pictures.  Eric was shocked it wasn't working and said, "It was only in the river for a little bit!"  [Insert puzzled look here]  God, I love him.

That's all for today!  Laundry calls!

Now get that picture of Eric driving up to this house with me in my rocking chair tied on top of the car out of your head!

Have a great night.  See you tomorrow!





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