A busy week

We went with our neighbor down to the local library this morning to meet Kurt Schrader, our (freshman democrat) US representative and hear what he had to say about recent events in Washington. He was only 15 minutes late, which was a pleasant surprise, and after a short intro and discussion of how the budget and stimulus funding would affect Oregonians, he got right to questions.

About 50 people attended and we were impressed with their knowledgeable queries and the level of politeness and respect afforded Schrader, given that most in the audience were undoubtedly Republicans who heartily disagreed with him. It helped, maybe, that he's on the agriculture committee, a vital place for a Polk County representative. Or perhaps they were reassured by his cowboy boots.

Not surprisingly, ninety percent of the discussion focused on the economy, and while we didn't hear anything new we came away feeling that possibly—just possibly, mind you—the situation might be under better control than we thought (although in one interesting comment he said he thought the US economy would never return to the level it was before this recession).

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On Tuesday we spent the day in Portland babysitting Melina who was home with a stomach bug that had kept her pretty low the day before. She was feeling much better though, and hungry, so after she ate two scrambled eggs and three small bowls of applesauce we went into her toy room and played with Lincoln logs.

"I like Lincoln logs" I said at one point. "I didn't have any when I was little."

Shocked disbelief. "Reeaally?"

"Really," I said.

"But you can ask Santa for them next Christmas," she said confidently, thus overcoming my sad lack of proper toys and satisfying herself with the solution.

And maybe I should ask. We built a nice house with windows and doors and a roof and everything. At least I thought it was a house. Melina assured me it was a playroom for the cats.