My nephew, Steve Moore has had an interesting year and a half. March of 2021 found Steve in a position that no active person ever wants to find themselves…with an injured hand. For Steve this was especially bad, because he likes to do so many projects with his hands, and to suddenly find himself sidelined was devastating. Nevertheless, Steve turned his attention to doing whatever was necessary to find his way back to being able to use his hand again. Really, it’s a good thing that occupational therapy is time consuming, because occupational therapy is a lot of work, and if you want to get back to full use of your hands, you have to work hard and commit to the program. Steve did that and now he’s back.

While Steve was unable to do the wood for his father-in-law, LJ Cook last summer, he has been able to get back at it this year. The vibrations from the saw really gave him a lot of trouble last year, but this year has been much better. He has built up the strength to almost 100%, and while the vibrations still bother him, it’s not enough to not run the saw. I’m sure that LJ is happy about that too. Getting and cutting up wood is a big job, and every hand is a big help.

Steve loves doing projects around the home he and his wife, my niece, Machelle Moore share. Earlier this spring he did some work on the front of the house. This has been an ongoing project. The cement work was done about 5 years ago, and just they then had to wait to do anymore digging so the cement was well cured. They then had to move about 16 sprinklers, before they hand dug the front and side part of the cement area. They didn’t want to take a chance on cracking the cement by using equipment for the dig, so they did it all by hand. The plan was to move the rock out to the sidewalk all along, but it’s a big job, and they had to get motivated for it. This summer was the year. Maybe the time of sitting around made him want to get back to it. Anyway, it was time, and Steve tackled it and now it’s way better than what Machelle had envisioned. It’s amazing how much things like that came make you feel a sense of pride of ownership.

Steve is a good man to have around, as his in-laws, Debbie and LJ Cook, have found. He is the kind of guy who will drop everything to help someone out when they need it. Plus, he likes to build things, and he has a real knack for it. The raised gardens he built for his in-laws, have made their gardening so much easier on their backs, and the fact that they are beautiful is a definite plus too. Steve stepped in to help Debbie and LJ with their freezer defrost project this past week too. That is a really hard job, and it’s always nice to have an extra set of hands. I know that Debbie and LJ really appreciated it. Steve is just a great guy to have around, and he has been a huge blessing to the Cook family. Today is Steve’s birthday. Happy birthday Steve!! Have a great day!! We love you!!

Fall Colors IIFall Colors IIILast Sunday, while on a trip to Hot Springs, South Dakota to hike the Mickelson Trail, Bob and I found ourselves sidelined due to rain. We sat around the hotel for several hours…until Bob decided that he had cabin fever. So we decided to go for a drive. I had driven this road on my trip to Wisconsin with my mom and sister, Cheryl. The road took us out the east side of Hot Springs, and then toward Rapid City. We went a ways and then turned toward Custer. The drive was beautiful with all the fall colors. It would eventually connect us with Custer State Park, but since we weren’t going to the Needles or the Wildlife Loop, we didn’t have to pay the fee.

As I said, the drive was nice, even in the rain and the scenery was beautiful, but one thing we started to notice…over and over, was a lot of turkeys. It felt like we had stumbled upon Turkey Central. They were in the farmers fields, by the side of the road, and even walking down the road. And they weren’t one bit afraid of our car either. In fact, they completely ignored us and our car. They moved only when they wanted to move. It occurs to me that these turkeys are quite used to all this traffic, and they might even like it. It also occurs to me that these turkeys are most likely bound for Thanksgiving and Christmas tables in the area. As we drove, we slowly went beyond all the turkeys, but it was too late by then, because I had already decided that we had just traveled through Turkey Central. It was as if they owned that stretch of road…or at least thought they did.

Fall Colors ITurkey CentralThe rest of our drive was fairly void of wildlife, and I went back to looking at the beautiful colors. My only wish would be that our area might have a few more red fall colors than it currently has…and that there might be a few more of the various kinds of wildlife. We did happen to see a few buffalo, but they were on someone’s ranch, so I suppose they aren’t wild…not that I intend to find out. For me, the turkeys were really the highlight of the drive. They just acted so bold and brave…never even taking notice of us at all. I think it was a very interesting drive through Turkey Central, indeed.

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