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The Celebrity Milk-Off

June 4th, 2009

We hosted a celebrity milk-off.


Minus the celebrities…





In one corner, a local family operated dairy milk wearing glass bottle, with sloped shoulders and vintage styling, charmed his opponents to death…






In the other corner, your typical mass produced plastic milk container threw out his chest and slew his opponents with his cheaper price tag.







I have been purchasing milk from a local dairy for about a year now.  





The first time I brought it home, my son Drew drank almost the entire container in one sitting.

The kid has a thing for liquid nourishment… any liquid nourishment.  I honestly fear for the day he drinks his first beer.

Drew instantly became a die-hard fan of the local dairy’s milk and could not stop exclaiming over how much better it tasted than regular milk.






Because of Drew’s enthusiasm, the other boys also jumped on the local dairy milk wagon and began to much prefer the milk from the glass bottles, to the milk from the plastic jugs.  I still buy both, as my family goes through about six gallons a week, and I can’t purchase all of that in half gallon glass bottles because honestly, at last to me, that would be insane.  But I do buy one or two glass containers a week because it really is delicious milk. 








The Country Doctor however, is very skeptical of any type of product that claims to be better tasting due to brand name, organic content, or family farm quaintness.








He is really the one who should be participating in the celebrity milk-off.

Minus the celebrities…







But we were out to prove at least to ourselves that there truly is a difference between the two types of milk.  My family had tested me on several ocassions in the presence of the CD and I always knew which milk was which.  They really do taste very different.  To me, the milk from the glass bottles is clearly better tasting.  It’s colder, creamier and lacks the strange saltiness of factory milk.






But in this taste test, the boys had to determine which milk was which (I switched the milks around each time) and they also had to decide which milk they thought was better.





Jack had a hard time making up his mind.







The other two boys knew immediately which milk was which and chose the Hildebrand Family Dairy milk as the best tasting milk.






Jack chose the commercially produced milk as his favorite milk and guessed that the commercial milk was the local dairy milk and vice versa.






Maybe all these freckles cause Jack to taste milk differently than his brothers do.







Or maybe he just likes the commercial milk better.

He can drink it with his dad.







The rest of us will drink the good stuff.

I am going to buy a new camera today.  I have been thinking about one that I saw in a Topeka camera shop a while ago and I am going to go and get it today. Yes I am.  I really am.  Here I go.  I am going.  I am going now.  I am walking out the door to go buy a new camera.  This is me leaving.  This is me going.  Goodbye.  I am going now.  I am off to buy a new camera.  I am going to count to three and then I will go.  One… two… three… Okay, I am going to count to five… one… two… three… Okay.  I am going to make a sandwich and then go…  But first I need to go to the bathroom and then I will go.  Here I go.  I am going to go buy that camera now.  I am leaving now… One… two… three…


I just can’t seem to pull the trigger on this purchase!

It is a very nice camera, one of those SLR’s types for which I have no idea what that means except for that it clearly means very complicated and absurdly expensive.  Strange how none of those words start with an S, an L, or an R.  

This fancy new camera that I am thinking about also does not take videos like my old camera does, but it will allow me to take photos with fuzzy backgrounds, because clearly this is a complete necessity to have a decent blog.

Is you’re blog suffering from shrinking stats?  

Perhaps you need more photos with fuzzy backgrounds!


Let me get this straight…

I am trading video capability on my camera for fuzzy backgrounds.  

I am trading a simple point and shoot that takes very nice shots for a huge behemoth with a set of complicated directions because it takes fuzzy backgrounds?

Now who’s the loony loony loon-o?


Should I go through with this bit of absurdity, the shop where I am possibly purchasing a camera, also offers a class that teaches you how to use the camera and hopefully how to take a photo with a fuzzy background.  I purchased my last camera at the same shop and did not take advantage of the free class because once I located the little button that you push to snap the photo, I decided the class was a ludicrous waste of time.  I wonder if I will ever get around to taking the class this time?  That fuzzy background is a pretty big pull for me.

I really do need a new camera.

I do!

No, really!

I do!

Can someone please come over and explain why I need the new camera to the Country Doctor this evening?

He is not going to understand the whole fuzzy background thing.

But the main reason I need a better camera is because we are going to London and Paris for our summer vacation!


Did I just say that out loud?

We have been watching the ticket prices for several months, hoping for a good deal, and then the talking heads and the internet spun Swine Flu into a pandemic and plane tickets hit rock bottom prices.  

It is always good to wait for world wide panic to plan your vacation.

You will save a BOO-COO of BUCKS!

Sadly, Swine Flu has not affected the price of SLR cameras.

But I need to get one anyway.  

I just do.  

It’s time.

Maybe I will have a photo with a fuzzy background up by the end of the day.

Or maybe once I arrive at the camera shop, I will balk at the expense and go to Target and buy some plastic hair accessories instead.

I imagine I will need a few of those in Paris too.

The Country Doctor and I are backroad travellers, much preferring tiny towns and forgotten farmsteads to the monotony of the major routes.





On a recent trip to visit the CD’s sister in southeast Kansas, we took a backroad and happened across the fantastic sculpture of Bob Dorris.  We slowed down as we passed his house the first time, and I snapped a few photos from the road, but no one was around to ask if we could get a little closer to the dinosaurs.


on the way back home….

We saw two people sitting on the front porch.

I frantically tugged at the CD’s shirt sleeve and said, “We have to stop! We have to talk to them! We have to see if they mind if I take some photos!”

“Okay.” he said as he pulled into their drive, stopped the car and then looked at me expectantly.

“No. Not me!” I stammered. “I am no good at talking to people! You go talk to them!” I hissed. “You’re the one that likes to ask all the questions!”

The Country Doctor sighed deeply and got out of our van.  He approached the two people who were so peacefully settled in on their porch in the cool of a beautiful spring evening and he broke their bubble of serenity.

“Hi… we were just driving by and noticed the dinosaurs and wondered if we could look around?” the CD asked.

The lady on the porch looked up from her book and quietly welcomed our family to explore her yard. She is the widow of the sculptor, Bob Dorris, who passed away two years ago. She watched us head off into her yard and then she went back to her book.

Here is a woman after my own heart I thought.

Bob Dorris, the sculptor of these paleolithic roadside wonders began to make these life sized recreations after he retired from his job as an Air Force engineer.

He used a lot of salvaged parts, but he also formed many of the parts himself.

He was not afraid to work on a very grand scale, his largest sculpture being 300 feet long.

My family walked amongst the dinosaurs marvelling at what Bob had wrought.

I did manage to ask his widow if Bob ever did any commercial work.

“No” she said, “he just built them for his own pleasure.”

I thought about the hours and hours that Bob spent on his wonderful work. The time and the money he must have invested. The pleasure that so many people derive from a drive past his farm or a walk across his yard.

And then I thought about the places that a passion for something… anything can take you.

And the places that it takes the people who enjoy the results.
Passion and inspiration… these two things…

Perpetual gifts…

They never stop bearing fruit.

It really pays to take a backroad once in a while.

There could be treasure that awaits.