Good day everyone

I have some pretty big news. We have been working hard here to write a book about chicken coops. Yes, chicken coops. Why? When we got started with our flock, we couldn’t find much information on Building The Perfect Coop. It seems a minor issue but over the years we’ve spent a small fortune correcting those early mistakes. And now that we’re serving as mentors for other folks getting started with their flocks, we realized that they have the same questions we did. So instead of answering all those questions, one at a time, over and over again, we’ve written The Chicken Coop Manual. And now it’s available for purchase through our website.

For now, it will only be available in PDF format, full color, 81 pages in length. We’re having the file formats created to convert it into an e-book that will work on things like Kindles and Nooks. That process takes awhile but we’re hoping those versions will be ready sometime in February. We also plan to eventually offer the book in full color print format. But for now, we’ll dip our toe in the self-publishing world by offering it in PDF format while we await the e-book conversion.

For anyone on the list who are curious about possibly owning a small flock, but you weren’t sure where to start, this book is for you.

On a related note, for anyone on the list who is stuck at home with kids or animals or other caretaker duties, but who wants or needs an additional source of income, book writing and publishing may be an option to consider. I wrote this book in between all my other duties, and we’re going the self-publishing route which will keep the vast majority of any sales, coming in to our coffers rather than into a publisher’s wallet. If anyone is interested to know how I went about researching, completing and now marketing this product, please feel free to email me off-list. Or I can provide general information on-list if enough folks are interested.

My limited understanding of

someone joining the Reserves who ultimately gets deployed is if they are gainfully employed, the company has to hold an equal position for them upon return … however, I have heard stories of military personnel coming back from deployment and the only equal position is in another state.

Somewhat similar to FMLA actually… the company is only required to hold an open slot for the person out on leave but WHERE that position resides becomes the tipping point learn more here again, this is my limited experience — others more knowledgeable might want to chime in.

I think it’s a dumb idea

In fact, I think it may cause her even MORE problems. Ok, she would have protections if she was deployed(which I assume to be overseas) that they couldn’t release her when she comes back. But that doesn’t affect her status *before* a deployment. If I were an employer who was considering letting her go(because of performance, integrity issues, whatever), I’d be more inclined to let her go as soon as I found out about her joining. At that point, wouldn’t she still be considered an ‘at will’ employee? Seems that enlisting would force them into pulling the trigger a lot sooner than they might have…

We have a young acquaintance in town

whom we really like, but let’s just say this person is in her early 20’s and hasn’t experienced much of the world yet. She recently informed me that she’s going to join the Reserves. I was rather shocked, and asked why. Not that I have anything against a person deciding on military service – after all I was a Navy wife for six years. That loyalty runs deep. But something about this situation struck me as very odd. And it turns out her answer didn’t really make me feel any better. This young woman, who is afraid she’s going to lose her job soon, is under the impression that by joining the Reserves she’ll be immune from ever being fired, laid off, etc. And that’s why she’s joining. To make herself jobless-proof.

I came away from that conversation suspecting that there’s a kernel of truth in there, but there was probably more to it than that. If an employer hires someone in the Reserves, and/or a person joins the Reserves while employed, I understand that the employer must offer the person their job back after a deployment. But I suspect there are provisions in there that if the employee can’t hack the job, or if the company is downsizing in some way, there are ways the company can let go a person if they need to, even if that person is in the Reserves.

Does anyone know for sure? I like this young lady and I would hate to see her sign her name on that line of obligation, under some misunderstandings about what it will and will not do for her. Thanks all…………..

Kathryn Kerby, still a proud Navy wife even though DH#1 skipped out years ago

Wow, this is a really rather sophisticated phishing attempt

The thing that flagged this right away is that we’re not PG&E customers, but I used to be. The only giveaway that this is a phishing scam, is that if I point (but don’t click) at the “click here” link, it shows that it goes to some other unrelated website. I went to the PG&E website and lo and behold, a number of utility companies are having problems right now with scam-statements like this. They never tire of trying to find new ways to get someone when we’re not paying attention…….

Seirus XM?

I had no real luck getting a lower monthly rate. They did offer me a few free months when I told them to end my service. I decided against it because they wanted a 2 year contract at the regular rack rate after the free months.
We now use tune in radio, which is FREE. I have it free on my computer, phone and tablet and it has all the same orograms as satellite.

I wish alternative routes were possible

He has to cross two rivers. There are some side streets he could use, but he still has to get on freeways to get onto the bridges to cross the rivers. Now they’re saying that seniority has nothing to do with who will go and who will stay. Sucks cause one person volunteered and if they were going by seniority Brad would have been safe. They are using a bunch different things like the drivers work records, driving scores, etc…. Which makes no f’ing sense. So basically brad could be punished for being a good employee. His boss couldn’t even tell him if the better employee will stay or be transferred. I am so stressed. It could be another 45 days before we know. AND it doesn’t even sound like his boss is the one that is making the decision.
He says we’re not moving back to Oregon, but we may still have to move closer to Oregon and be right off the freeway to make the commute less.

We have a similar situation here

I-696 is the east-west corridor through this area. But going eastbound in the afternoon rush hour is bumper-to-bumper for most of it’s length(19 miles). With speeds not going much more than 20mph, I can’t understand why people don’t go 2 miles south and use 8-mile Rd. It’s QUICKER.

Don’t you just love it when employers mess with your life in such a manner?

Something I would suggest is he look for alternate routes to the new location. Even if they are slightly longer the savings in fuel, time and wear and tear on his nerves (and yours) could well be worth a few extra miles.
Sometimes the “surface streets”, as we call the non-highway streets here in ok, are far less congested and easier to use than the main highways. Often my guys come home a different route, veering around wrecks and go through a small town about 5 miles off the beaten path and come the country roads home. As a result they will get home a good 30 minutes to an hour faster than if they had stayed in the traffic jam. Just a thought.

We usually don’t get to see Murphy coming

That’s why he’s (or she) is called Murphy. But here he comes. Found out on Wednesday that there is a 50/50 change my hubby will be forced to transfer to another office. This new office is 34 miles away. Now I am sure most of you are thinking no big deal. BUT, here’s where Murphy comes in to play…he would have to drive through two major cities. That would make his communte terrible. To work it would take about an hour…coming home on a good day it would be 1 1/2 hours. A bad day it could be over 2 hours. Not to mention gas that would require filling up every 3 days and wear and tear on the truck. Oh and cause we live in a state with out state tax (we have sales tax) and he would be working in a state that DOES have state tax, Oregon taxes will be taken out of his check and we have to file non resident taxes at the end of the year where we will then get to pay the state of Oregon more money. In all I figure it will be about a 25% pay cut.

I looked over our budget and I have NO IDEA where in the world I am going to cut 25%.

For those of you who are praying people, please say a prayer for us. Pray that he isn’t the one who gets transferred. And if he does, he gets a new job soon….yes he already started looking. But the economy is still pretty bad here.