Just a brief update for the beginning of 2009. No new progress on the house to report, due mostly to the weather here in Flagstaff. We started getting snow about two weeks before Christmas and we've had fresh stuff every week or so since then. It is unusual in Flag for the snow to stick around for any extended period because it warms up so much in the afternoons when the sun is out. However, because storms have been regular and frequent for the past month or so, lots of the snow is still around. We are anxious to start placing more bales but cannot do so when there is snow and ice on the slab. We need to have a good thaw and then enough time to squeegee the moisture off the slab in order to start placing more bales. The weather folks just "canceled" a storm advisory for this weekend, so we're hoping we might be able to get a little done at that time.
In the meantime, Therese has taken a new job. She will be working in customer service at Southwest Windpower, a manufacturer of wind generators based here in Flagstaff. She'll start full time on January 12.
We've also acquired two new dogs (stay tuned for pictures at a later date). They are eleven year old Siberian Huskies, previously owned by David, who recently passed away from cancer. Adam got a call from David's ex-wife last Friday asking us to consider taking the dogs because it was literally David's last wish that his dogs be well taken care of and that they stay together. Apparently, Adam's reputation as a former sled dog owner in Alaska precedes him. Adam had met David on a couple of occasions through a mutual friend, Dwight, with whom Adam went to school at Northern Arizona University, here in Flagstaff, in the 1970's (Adam and Dwight have stayed in touch after we relocated here in 2004). Adam called Tammy (David's ex-wife) back on Saturday morning to tell her we would take the dogs and she asked if he could come to the hospital right away to tell David in person that he was willing to take the dogs, because David was waiting to be "unplugged" until he saw Adam in person. Adam did so and the doctors literally removed life support from David immediately thereafter. Adam went out and got the dogs the same day and they've quickly become welcome additions to the family. It helps that they are strictly outdoor dogs, as we have very little room in the doublewide trailer for two additional beings of any size. Hoss, the male, is a 70 pound Siberian and his sister, Sobaka, is about 45 pounds. Sobaka means "dog" in Russian, so that was a quick route to Therese's heart. They are a little skittish of the kids, having never been around kids previously. But they are clearly good-natured dogs and in the two times they have escaped their pen since coming to live here (with the help of Lola and Rojo, the two long term canine members of the family), they have willingly stuck around the neighborhood. Adam and the kids hope to harness them and hook them up to the sled(s) that came with them this weekend, so that will be when the pictures will apply. Stay tuned! In the absence of news on the construction project, this may just become our family website!