Category Archives: Uncategorized

Joshua trees!

I love the sight of Joshua trees. When we first moved here, Mike and I were both enchanted with them and, almost 31 years later, we still are. A drive through the desert with Joshuas surrounding us is our idea of time well spent.

joshua tree1

joshua tree2

Joshua trees are formally called Yucca Brevifolia. Early settlers thought they were palm trees, but studies of the trees pointed to them being in the lily family. Recent DNA testing found them to be in the Yucca family. Whatever classification they fall under, they are a very unique plant with VERY SHARP leaves (been pricked a few times myself – OUCH) and some awesome, surreal shapes.

compass roses 031

And here is our Joshua tree:

joshua tree in front

Something we should all know.

A World of Words

So there’s a proposition — Proposition 37 — on the ballot in California that would make the state the first in the nation to require the labeling of food products containing genetically modified organisms (GMOs). When you turn on the TV here in the Golden State, you’d think these extra few words on our instant coffee, granola, canned soup, or soy milk containers are going to bankrupt poor food producers and send millions of people into instant poverty.

All of a sudden, the airwaves are swamped with doctors, researchers, farmers, and fake university professors predicting the demise of civilization were the poor people of California to be subjected to this truly radical concept of knowing what’s in their food. Apparently, the cost of adding a few more words to the ingredient list on the packaging is going to be so astronomical that each of our grocery bills is going to…

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Titanic remembered through geocaching

Yesterday a blogging friend, Al from Thoughts of Houdini, posted about this year being the 100th anniversary of the Titanic sinking, and that jogged my memory about a virtual cache we found in Hawaii a few years ago, GC584A – That Sinking Feeling.

Lucy Parrish was a survivor of the Titanic disaster. When she died in 1930 she was buried in Oahu Cemetery in Honolulu. See that white square in the upper corner of her headstone? Someone named Michael B. Romero placed that on her headstone. I’ve googled him several times to find out who he is and why he did that, but have never found anything. Geocaching quite often takes us places we would have never known existed (this beautiful cemetery being one of them) and shows us things we would have never known about (such as this memorial plaque for Lucy Parrish… or even her grave). Click on the photo below for a larger, clearer image of the plaque.

Mike, being a history buff, was very excited by this find and he stills mentions it from time to time. I’m not much for history, but even I was excited about it.

A few months ago I discovered a beautiful Titanic geocoin that I knew HAD to be in our collection, and it’s always a hit at geocaching meet & greet events. Here’s our gorgeous geocoin, made by geocacher mo pirate in honor of the 100th anniversary of the Titanic disaster:

If any geocachers see this post and want to discover this beautiful geocoin, please do. I left the number visible on purpose because it has its own logo, like the photo on the right.

more information:

kathy fiscus

Kathy Fiscus – August 21, 1945 – April 8, 1949

Kathy Fiscus is the little girl I’m named after. Kathy was three years old when she fell down a well in San Marino, California on April 8, 1949. Friends, neighbors and strangers worked for more than 48 hours to rescue her, but when they finally reached her it was discovered that she had most likely died within a short time after the fall. Her rescue attempt was the first live television & radio coverage of an event, with  KTLA reporter Stan Chambers (shown in the center of the photo below holding a microphone) there throughout the ordeal.

My mom was so upset by Kathy’s death that she decided that if she ever had a little girl she’d name her Kathy. Three years later I was born… and mom named me Kathy, just as she had said she would. I wonder how many other little girls were named Kathy in honor of her?

After Kathy’s death the well was capped and the field where it’s located is now part of  San Marino High School.

Among the tributes to Kathy was a song written and recorded by Jimmie Osborne titled The Death of Little Kathy Fiscus, which sold over a million copies. You can hear it here on YouTube.

Find A Grave Memorial Page for Kathy

roy’s flags

While going through mom & Roy’s things a while back, I discovered two flags from his military days in Irumagawa, Japan. The flags are made of silk and they’re absolutely gorgeous. I’m so happy he kept them. Roy would never talk about his military days so I had no idea he had these until after he was gone. I would have loved to hear his stories.

Roy E. Robinson - 1719th Signal Service Company Wing, Irumagawa, Japan

Commemorate Landing Japan flag


Nice little 10-second rolling quake. No damage at our house, just a wee bit of dizziness for me, and all the wind chimes in the house started ringing.

The news says it’s centered near Salton Sea and at the moment it’s rated 5.4.

happy thanksgiving

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone! I’m watching the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade from NYC, pecan pie bars are in the oven, the yam casserole is awaiting its turn to be baked and the zucchini bread is already done. Our son called a while ago (he’s in New Jersey with his wife’s family) to wish us Happy Thanksgiving. All’s right in my world.


NovaEarly yesterday morning Nova lost his battle with what we are sure was feline leukemia. His gums turned white in the past week (a sign of FLIV) and after days of steadily declining he was gone.

Born on our bed on February 19, 1998, he was 11 and a half years old. A large cat, he was our “big baby” with a meow that sounded like a wistful “hello” and would melt your heart.

We’ll miss him.