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By Wendy Thomas
Published: 02/20/24 Topics: Dog Friendly, Family, Mount Rainier WA, Packwood WA, Things To Do, Vacation Comments: 0
Allison, who works in inventory management, and Chase, who is active-duty military, are currently stationed in Port Orchard, Washington. They wanted to take a skiing vacation within Washington State. Theirs was a full house, with Allison, Chase, their two kids, two friends, and their dog, Magnolia.
Packwood Properties: What made you choose Packwood and Cowlitz Manor House?
Allison: Chase is an avid skier, and we wanted to take a ski vacation to someplace new. We’d never been there, but he wanted to try the White Pass area, and the house looked beautiful and the location seemed to be amazing. Plus, it had a hot tub.
Packwood Properties: Did you use the hot tub at all?
Allison: Oh yes. The kids took skiing lessons, so after spending a day skiing, it was great. We used the gas fire pit upstairs as well, especially when the power went out!
Packwood Properties: Oh no! Sorry about that. I hope that turned out to be okay in the end?
Allison: It was. Packwood Properties kept us up to date about when the power would come back on. We had the gas stove inside and the gas fire pit outside, so we were fine until the power came back to the street in the evening.
Packwood Properties: What was your favorite thing about the house?
Allison: We loved the front porch facing the river. We spent most of our time there. And, of course, the hot tub after skiing. We used the fire pit quite a bit. Especially with the power out! We liked how close it was to the White Pass Skiing Area, only a half hour drive. The house was big enough for all six people plus Magnolia to spread out. It was beautiful. Just like the pictures showed.
Packwood Properties: I hope we’ll be able to host you again in the future.
Allison: It was one of the better Airbnbs we’ve stayed in. We will definitely stay here again, if available!
Author: Wendy Thomas – Cowlitz Manor House, Cowlitz Manor House
Blog #: 0977 – 02/20/24
Sponsor: Cowlitz Manor House – Modern luxury with a rustic finish, surrounded by the finest examples of Western Washington's natural beauty: Welcome to the Cowlitz Manor House on the river! – (Link to Cowlitz Manor House)
By William May
Published: 12/31/20 Topics: Covid-19 Virus, Family, Gratitude, Health Comments: 0
Let us not be irreverent.
Surely, Covid changed things, but it has seldom changed them wholly and unequivocally, no matter how abrupt that may sound. During wars, life continues. After a hurricane, the population digs out. And during the flu pandemic of 1919, folks wore masks for a time, many died, and the rest carried on - as rude as that sounds.
Some parts of life always have been, are now, and always will be. Now is a good time to make a list, so we do not forget when the next life-altering event takes place. Here are just a few.
No matter the weather, rain or shine, no matter the time of year, or the time of day, in the wonderful park that sits midway between our condo and our offices, in fact directly outside my window, if the field lights are on, those crazy soccer players are out there running in circles. Maybe there are even more of them now.
Growing up we did not have soccer. Football, basketball and baseball were king. If anyone played soccer, it was unknown to me. And, if they had called it "Football", we would have been very confused. Yes, their game revolved around kicking the ball with the foot, while ours had almost nothing to do with feet.
So, somehow in the hierarchy of United States, "sports football" as the rest of the world knows it, became soccer here. It was decades before soccer became visible in the states, eventually to become reluctantly popular.
Covid also forced many to stay home and watch television. Of course, the majority of Americans love their TV and spend an average of 21 hours a week glued to the telly.
But, never did we have to admit the addiction. Now none of us can avoid admitting - we were watching TV and, yes we further must admit, we kinda like it. OK, we really love our screen drug of choice. Unless, of course, we compare it to computer screens, at which we spend twice the time on average.
The idea that everyone in the country or the world get along or will agree on everything ignores history. It has never happened and it never will. Unfortunately, the same has been true during Covid. Politicians fight about who is the most right and the most wrong.
Protestors have and will bring forward grievances, justified, very justified or not. Their desire to be heard mirrors other times over the decades and centuries when groups of people felt compelled to bring forth their causes, regardless of other considerations, such as the needs of others, including the profound affect of global sickness.
Away from the light, away from the news on websites, radio, television or newspapers, more momentous events are taking place that also show how nothing has changed.
Men and women are so in love, that they find ways to get married. As now so can men and men, women and women. That had changed before the virus.
Students still yearn to learn, even though the place has changed to their homes, the teachers appear on screens instead of in front of blackboards, and recess means running around your own yard, instead of the school yard.
Parishioners still attend church to find the guidance that they have always required. Jews need the Sabbath. Muslim's need daily prayers. Hindu's pray in their homes. Atheists and agnostics feel none of those leanings and embrace their unchanged opinions.
Unfortunately, the people who lived rude, remain that way. Those who were addicted to working, rather than enjoying, never missed a beat. Those who worship money, attended that church religiously. Some figured how to prosper during times that were financially devastating for others.
But best of all, people who were kind, remain kind or their kindness became more visible. Humble people quietly stepped forward and served the universe - retail clerks, transit workers, care givers, medical staff and even those unfairly maligned who work at rest home facilities.
And, unfortunately, people have died and in larger numbers than ever, and far more frequently than is fair to be cut down before their time. Or they have suffered grievously at the hands of a devious, invisible devil, who causes death and destruction when its only goal is to live and grow.
And those kinds of germs have also not changed. They have been around forever and will be around again in the future. We were better prepared this time than last, and will be even better prepared next time.
Author: William May, William May
Blog #: 0798 – 12/31/20
By William May
Published: 04/20/20 Topics: Covid-19 Virus, Family, Gratitude, Health Comments: 0
Really, who the hell do they think they are?
Awakening early every morning, or even in the middle of the night. After too little sleep and too much stress, trudging to a job they love, although they admit it is difficult to love right now. How dare they go to work?
They will often spend 12-hours shifts or much longer and for days on end. Not one day off, not a moment to spend on personal things. No time with family or friends. How do they dare do that to themselves?
Some are paid very well, some paid adequately and others earn far too little. Most will receive nothing extra for the insurmountable obstacles they confront. How do they dare to work at all when others would not?
And yet, they persevere and get up and go to a job they know will be very frustrating. They know it is also rewarding, but that it will not feel that way every day. They do not dare to think about relief, at least not yet.
At the job, they will toil hour after hour, often with no time to eat or take a break. Squeezing in a bathroom break is necessary, but even that feels like wasting time. They will be confronted with thing after thing to do. Work upon work. No rest for the weary.
There will be a non-stop demand to do the difficult, the impossible and even the frightening. They won't feel up to the task all the time, but they will step up to the tasks every time. How dare they do that to themselves?
They see weeks of challenge ahead, maybe months, maybe years. They refuse to look for the finish line, because every champion runner puts one foot ahead of the other knowing it’s the only way to finish. They think about quitting, but only rarely, because quitting would make it more difficult for others. They dare not let anyone down.
As the world begins to show its gratitude for these wonderful human beings, they will still feel inadequate, because the mission is so huge and for now seemingly impossible. How dare they believe they can make it better?
These people are not necessarily glib with their words. They have no time for pontificating. They have no time to complain. They do not seek glory or even recognition. They would not dare direct any attention to themselves.
Every one of them knows the risk of physical illness, mental duress, financial hardships and family stress. They know these things, so how do they continue on? Would anyone else dare?
They dare because the task is at hand. The challenge is now. They dare not wait. They dare not fail. They will not let that happen, no matter how long it takes and no matter the personal cost. How dare they believe they are life givers?
Doctors, nurses, caregivers, counselors, therapists, pharmacists, ambulance drivers, EMTs, first-responders, administrators, janitors and every employee at every hospital, all dare to come to work - and we must all be so grateful that they do.
These people dare because they are different than most of us. Very different. Most dreamt of their career as a calling. They have always known it would be difficult, but they never dared to think it would be like this. But they did know that they could and would act in ways the rest of us cannot promise. They dare to go to work because they saves lives.
Whether you believe in God or you do not, whether you can donate to their cause or not, whether you have suffered from illness or not, it is now time to give thanks that somehow there are people like them in the world.
It is time thank them for dedication that is immense, commitment that is astounding, and for courage that is unending. How dare they?
Author: William May, Plumbob Publishing
Blog #: 0743 – 04/20/20
By Ron Lee
Published: 12/24/19 Topics: Family, Holidays Comments: 0
There could be no more Christmassy place in the entire world than at the Diamond Belle Ranch. The sky is black as night, no pollution, no jetliners overhead, not a breath of wind.
Each and every star stabs through the black blanket of night. The waning moon is but a very slight sliver of light. But along with the stars the aspens and pines are illuminated as if from a back light.
We sit on the porch. It is frigid but we are warm in the glow of the universe. Very little discussion. A great deal of wry smiling and even a few giggles.
To extend our stay out of doors hot chocolate was brewed before, spiked with a bit of coffee to stave off the drowsy as we linger in the Adirondack chairs, head tilted back wondering at the unfathomable majesty of the world above.
But the ranch itself is majestic. All year round of course, but during winter its enveloping reach can not be ignored. No neighbor lights. We have doused ours too.
Under the frozen lake, surely the fish are straining to see through the ice and up to the stars. They do sleep, but not tonight for tonight is Christmas an we can only hope the world is wrapped in the peace we enjoy here.
It is like this every year. Our custom. The privilege.
The night will not last forever. Soon we must go inside. To sleep. To dream of sugar plum fairies dancing..
Author: Ron Lee, Diamond Belle Ranch
Blog #: 0723 – 12/24/19
767 Acres wilderness guest ranch, surrounded by thousands of acres of forest service, with 44 acre private fly fishing Walker Lake. Majestic Wauconda lodge sleeps up to 23 over night guests, and up to 250 daily visitors for private weddings and groups. Nearby by but far from Spokane, Wenatchee and Seattle Tacoma. – DiamondBelleRanch.com
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