This is one of those big make-up blogs.

If I didn't have any pictures to go with this blog I probably wouldn't remember what needs to be said.

October. In retrospect it has been a busy month.

We took our usual trip to Apple Annies. This year the farmers grew a corn field that included a labarinth featuring the design of the new Arizona quarter.

This year the growers put on a little presentation about growing corn. Various schools attended at different times and on this particular day at the particular time we had our class the program was put on for homeschoolers. After the corn presentation the kids all went on a hayride out to a pumpkin patch where they each selected a pumpkin.

The pumpkin patch featured a variety of pumpkin sizes so there was a "perfect" pumpkin in the eyes of each homeschooled kid.

Now that Halloween is over maybe we can cook up those pumpkins and make yummy squash dishes with it.

The local homeschool group put on a "Fine Arts" event this month. They wanted everybody to enter some sort of visual art and some kind of performing art. I took the bull by the horns to do a little family a cappela program. The kids have vast differences of tallent when it comes to singing. I'm sure this difference is based mostly upon age. I was sort of hoping that the kids would be able to perform without me; but no. They needed somebody to sort of keep them on key.

We performed the song "Break Thou the Bread of Life." It went over okay. All performers were heavy on the "amature" level. We fit right in.

Also in October we went over to the local Gila river and attempted to catch a fish. I just helped the kids with their fishing leaders and with suggesting good fishing holes. I also harped and harped and harped about being careful about casting - that nobody gets a trebble hook in the ear as a result.

I suppose the reason I'm so uptight about safe casting is because as a young fisherman myself I hooked my brother in his scalp during one of my casts. I had really gaven it a hard swing in an effort to get that hook way the heck and gone out there in the water. To this day I can feel the hard reverse torque of that pole as it probably nearly lifted my brother off the sand.

On this particular trip we thought we'd try fishing near the diverter dam that causes about half the river water to flow down a canale to irrigate the cotton fields.

No monster fish were caught but a few non-keepers were. The kids had their pictures taken with their trophies before they returned them to the river.

I should probably mention that Dakota lost her first tooth in October. She pushed it out with her tongue (which should indicate just how loose it was).

Yesterday was very busy. I made up a list of things to do. I ended up spending the whole day on #1 on the list. The main shower in the house had a broken stem on the hot water. For several months people taking a shower needed to either wrench the stub with great effort to turn the hot water on and off or they needed to use a pair of pliers. My goal was to see what kind of stem is in that manifold and get a new one along with a new set of appropriate handles.

Well the stem is different from anything I have ever seen. When I started to disassemble it the stem blew out and shot water horizontally across the tub. I ran out to the street and turned off the water.

Ok. So there were the big parts (one inch or larger), a spring and a missing grommet - probably down the drain. We could not find a replacement stem at Home Depot and, since we were never pleased with that kind of shower setup anyway we decided to replace the whole fixture.

That turned into one big job. The people who installed that shower system installed it to stay. The "water proof" panel through which the fixture protruded is held in by I-don't-know-what that is unremoveable without ripping out half the bathroom.

I got enough off to change out the plumbing. Plenty to make the shower extremely unsightly - even though it has a beautiful shower fixture now.

This project required three trips to Home Depot. I'll not go into all the gory details and I will not include a picture. It's just too horrible to look at.

One of these days it will look presentable once we decide what we are going to do in there to make it the way we like.

And "one of these days" may be sooner than anyone thinks. We are looking into adopting and with getting licensed to adopt or foster comes home inspections. We know the inspectors are looking primarily for safety and health concerns; but a half-completed shower setup couldn't look all that wonderful to an inspector.