Table of Contents
The President's Corner
Education Through Sharing
Bulletin Contest Report
From The Executive Secretary
Who Are We, Really?
Jeanne Mager
Jerry Harr
Slide, Video Library
Program Competition ... Why?
CFMS Dues and Insurance

CFMS Field Trip
Earth Science
I'm A New Member
Carrizo Plan
Make a Statement be a Demonstrator
Help Prevent Home Water Damage
Scientist Discover New Element
Oil and Gas Firms Honored
It Was A Pleasure

The President's Corner

By Colleen McGann, CFMS President

Colleen McGann - CFMS President -  2006

I have been honored to be your CFMS President this year. This has been a good year for CFMS. We had a great show at Calaveras, whom I thank again, with expanded display competition and we have shows scheduled for the next two years. However, we should have shows scheduled out 5 years. Please consider hosting a CFMS show, with all the help available it is not very difficult.

I thank individual and club participation in all CFMS areas; all the committees, including club Rockhound of the year, All American competition, Bulletin competition, Junior badge program, CFMS competition, our club CFMS Directors, our CFMS representatives to AFMS, our PLAC leaders, CFMS judges at AFMS shows, working with AFMS Rules committee, our club support of Endowment and Scholarship Funds, both CFMS and AFMS. I also like to thank all our club field trip leaders, our club lapidary instructors, our volunteer instructors at CFMS earth science seminars, our members providing club programs, and AFMS for providing new programs every year from the annual program competition All these activities create the atmosphere for our clubs to build community awareness of the wonderful opportunities for family activities our clubs offer.

For all the rest of us through our clubs we can continue to explore our interests in the earth and our curiosity for how rocks and minerals are formed. I urge the clubs to continue to expand this publicity by displaying this information to bring in new members. We can wear the jewelry we make; lapidary, beading, gold and silver work, faceted gems or we can display in local libraries the minerals we have found on field trips and rocks we have carved. Our clubs have fun and interests for all age groups.

Your CFMS newsletter will continue to advise your clubs about the ongoing CFMS activities. Please make sure your club informs CFMS and AFMS early next year of your club's new officers and to whom the free monthly newsletters should get mailed. These newsletters carry vital information for our clubs you will not want to miss.

Again, I thank you for the opportunity to share my love of rocks with this wider arena. I will continue my involvement in CFMS and AFMS as a volunteer and work to make CFMS even better tomorrow than it is today.

Loretta Ogden

Education Through Sharing

By Name, Loretta Ogden

Terry Yoschak

The Roseville Rock Rollers Gem and Mineral Society, is very pleased to present the "Education thru Sharing Award" to Terry Yoschak. Terry joined the Roseville Rock Rollers Gem and Mineral Society in early 2002. Since becoming a member, Terry has taken on the tasks of Bulletin Editor, establishment of a Web site, Web Host, Treasurer of our Club, Treasurer for Gem Shows, CFMS Bulletin Aids Assistant Chair, CFMS Bulletin Aids Chair, and compiled the "All American Award Book" for the last four years.

Amazingly, Terry is still in almost all of the above positions! In the short time Terry has been with our club, she has demonstrated dedication, perseverance, professionalism, along with offering an enormous amount of personal time, for the educational benefit of all. Terry has given of herself and the Roseville Rock Rollers believe that she is very deserving of recognition for her contributions!!!

Jim Hutchings, President
Roseville Rock Rollers Gem & Mineral Society

Submitted by Florence Brady

Bulletin Contest Report

By Terry Yoschak, Bulletin Aids Chair

Terry Yoschak

The 2007 CFMS Bulletin Contest

The deadline for all entries is December 9, 2006, for bulletins and articles published from January through December, 2006.

There seems to be some confusion about entering bulletins. You must send FOUR copies of your bulletin (each with a score sheet attached) for your bulletin entry to be complete. Two copies must be from the month (issue) of April 2006 and two copies must be from another 2006 month (issue) of your choice. Exception: if you are entering for the first time in the "New Editor" category, you don't have to send April, but can choose any two months •   again, you must send two copies of each month, adding up to four copies altogether.

The rules and entry forms are available on the CFMS website. If you have any questions about entering or about filling out the forms, please contact me.

Terry Yoschak,
916-624-2956 evenings,

From The Executive Secretary

By Pat La Rue

Pat La Rue

Included at the back of this newsletter are copies of the Dues and Insurance payment form, subscription form as well as the Change of Officers form. It is essential that all clubs return the Change of Officers form so I know whom to contact in the event of an emergency as well as which three club members should receive the three complementary copies of the CFMS Newsletter.

Many times I receive the form with just names and no addresses. I do not publish anyone's address who wishes to keep it private. I do however forward the information to the AFMS Central Office if it is needed to help update the AFMS Newsletter mailing list. I must point out that your address is already a matter of public record and easily obtained from more than one Internet data bases. Neither CFMS or AFMS shares its roster with outsiders; besides neither list is large enough to interest anyone seeking to buy the information. It's already out there for FREE! Don't forget to include at least one contact phone number and/or e-mail address.

Who Are We, Really?

By Elizabeth Myers, Membership Committee

It's interesting how perceptions can define our world and how others see us. Many years ago while attending a birthday party of a friend at the local Grange in rural El Dorado County, I stepped outside to get a breath of cool air. A couple of fellows from out of town, cattlemen it turned out, had the same idea and we exchanged greetings. Polite conversation followed and they asked if I lived locally and how many acres? My response we (my spouse and two children) lived just down the road on 176 acres was greeted with raucous laughter and the comment that where they come from they refer to ranches that small as backyard farmers! When they asked me what I raised in my backyard; I knew more laughter was unavoidable when I replied "dairy goats." And I was right.

Now these were young cattlemen and obviously not wise in the polite ways of the world. Their blatant projection of their preconceptions disturbed me. So, I proceeded to educate them by spouting the most recent statistical findings from UC Davis and other sources on the feed rationing, cost of production, higher yield per acre, future market growth potential and many other longwinded statistics regarding the raising of dairy goats. Their whole attitude changed, becoming more attentive and perhaps grudgingly, respective. My husband and children came out then, ready to go home. I bid the fellows farewell and as we were getting into our vehicle, one of them called out, "How many head of these dairy goats you got anyway?" I turned to face them with a gentle smile and called out, "Four."

We left them standing there mouths agape and shaking their heads as we drove away. They never learned in addition to our newly formed dairy-goat herd we also ran cattle, prize bulls and a few head of sheep on our irrigated land.

What lies behind the title Gem & Mineral Society for your club? What describes the substance of your club? Is there more to you then meets the eye? I'll bet there is.

Perhaps your club personality is progressive, alert to the changing interests of your members and active in the pursuit of ways to accommodate them. You may be a social club, fulfilling the needs of your members to socialize with people of like interests. Your club may put emphasis on competition as a means of self-improvement, or just •  cause you like to compete. I guess what I'm saying is don't let the "out-of-towners" define who you are, know yourself. Share that knowledge with potential members through your club brochures or just speaking with them. Membership isn't just about getting new members, but keeping members.

Clubs are as dynamic as their membership. Understanding the interests of the members, setting goals to meet those interests and defining and allocating the resources needed to meet your goals make for a successful club.

In Memory of Jeanne Mager

Jeanne Mager

It is with deep sorrow that I have to report that Jeanne Mager, CFMS President in 1980, passed away on Friday, October 6th 2006. Jeanne had recently undergone both heart and lung surgery and never fully recovered from this. She died in El Camino Hospital, in Mountain View, California, having never left ICU.

As CFMS President, Jeanne made it a goal to try and visit each and every federation club in Northern California and a few in the Southland. She was an avid mineral collector and accomplished jeweler, learning her craft from her mentor, former CFMS President Sharr Choate, herself a gifted jeweler and author.

Jeanne was a trophy winner in mineralogy and past president of the San Mateo Gem and Mineral Society, a member of Bay Area Mineralogists and The Crystal Gazers of San Francisco. She was a fine field collector and a good friend to many rockhounds. Jeanne leaves two grown sons, Randy(Lisa) and Brad, and two grandsons as well as her many friends. No services were held at her request but a "celebration of her life" was conducted by family and friends.

Submitted by Art Reno

In Memory of Jerry Harr

Jerry Harr

Jerry Harr passed away Sept 27, 2006. He and his wife Lois were well known dealer-demonstrators for many years. Jerry was one of the original silversmithing instructors at Zyzxx and shared his knowledge with countless students. His signature pieces were the scenic bola ties which featured miniature scenes in three dimensions. He won many awards for his work and was inducted into the Rockhound Hall of Fame in 1995. He will be missed.

Slide, Video, and CD-ROM Program Library

By Bill Gissler, CFMS Audiovisual Program Librarian

 Bill Gissler

At the November 11 Federation Directors' meeting, a list of new video and CD-Rom format programs, added to the library since publication of the 2006 Program Catalog, was distributed. Directors were requested to see that this list along with the 2006 Program Catalog get into the hands of their 2007 club program chairperson. If your 2006 Program Catalog has been lost, a copy can be obtained from Pat LaRue for $1.60 plus $0.90 postage, total $2.50. The Program Catalog with update can also be found on the CFMS website ( As new programs become available in 2007, they will be announced in the CFMS Newsletter.

A good meeting program is essential to attracting and maintaining member attendance at meetings. Some clubs plan their entire year's program schedule by submitting a list of potential programs to their membership in January for their recommendations. Getting all club members to participate in selecting and planning meeting programs improves the educational quality of programs. Audiovisual programs from the CFMS library can help you in planning your club's programs.

The audiovisual program library has over 150 slide, 120 VHS and 6 DVD video, and 6 CD-Rom programs to loan to CFMS clubs for meetings and study groups. The cost for programs are minimum to recover mailing, packaging and reproduction expenses. The library is totally run by volunteers.

Program Competition...Why?

By Marge Collins, AFMS Programs

Have you seen any good programs lately at a Club meeting?* Were any of them produced by a fellow Club member? No doubt, there was a round of applause to show appreciation for the producer's efforts.

There is a way that producers of presentations can earn more than a round of applause •   by entering Program Competition! There are "rewards and recognition" for the winners. Cash prizes defray production costs, an award certificate and pin are presented to the winners and information is published in newsletters and magazines. But more importantly, each winning program is duplicated and distributed to the seven Regional Libraries, making the winning programs available to Clubs across the country -- giving members a chance to enjoy and learn from them for many years.

*If the answer to the first question is "no", perhaps you can borrow an AFMS Winner from the MWF Program Library. There are many excellent programs available.

We admit, not all winners are equal and older programs need to be replaced. You and/or your Club could produce a presentation and enter Program Competition, perhaps to replace an older program. Why not share your interest, your enthusiasm for an aspect of our hobby •   so that others may benefit from it and you can reap the rewards? Too late for the 2006 deadline? Start now for 2007.

"Guidelines and Rules" for 2007 Program Competition are on the AFMS website along with "Tips to Develop Programs". If you want more information or have questions, contact your Regional Program Librarian or AFMS Program Competition:

c/o Marge Collins
3017 Niles-Buchanan Rd.
Buchanan MI 49107
(Attach "read receipt" to verify receipt.)

CFMS Dues and Insurance

By Richard Pankey, 1st VP

Dick Pankey

It is that time of the year again•  the time when each society is to send in their:

  • Dues, which help pay for the 3 Newsletters, the services, the representation, the workings and the support that each society receives from CFMS and AFMS.
  • Insurance payment that protects each society with liability coverage for show, field trips meetings and more.
  • The Officer Change Form so that the Federation knows who you are, where you are and how to contact you.
  • Your membership roster as of December 31. This is your roster for 2006, not your 2007 roster. These are the members who have been protected with liability insurance all year.

The dues of Membership Societies for CFMS are $1.50 annually per individual member, regardless of membership classification. The only exception is for CFMS Honorary members. Some clubs have interpreted this as meaning club or society honorary members, also. The intent of the Bylaws was to exclude CFMS Honorary members only. A change to the Bylaw was made in 2003 to add "CFMS" in front of Honorary in ARTICLE IV DUES: Section 1: to clarify any misunderstanding.

At our November 11th Directors' Meeting we announced the insurance charge would remain the same as last year at $6.00 per "active member". As defined by our insurance company (the basis for our rate) an "active member" is any member who attends one or more functions each year. This includes activities such as, but not limited to, general membership meetings, annual picnics, Christmas gathering, field trips, participation in shop or classes, etc. Any attendance and/or participation in a club activity creates liability exposure and therefore requires payment of the insurance charge. Our insurance renewal date was October 16th and the Federation has already paid the entire premium for this year.

Dues are due and payable by January 1st based on your membership list as of December 31st, which should accompany the dues payment.

Dues and insurance for 2007 are $7.50 for all classes of members and for all "active members." The dues/insurance payment form is in this Newsletter along with the Officer Change Form or they are available from your Director.

The Officer Change Form is very important to your society and to CFMS. It is contact information for your society and the information used to prepare the CFMS Society Roster. It is important to your club that this form is completely and accurately filled out so that your club information is up to date. This is the contact information that the Federation uses to notify your club, your Federation Director and your members of Federation news, events and happenings. The importance of filling this form out completely was pointed out several times at the Directors' Meeting. Too many clubs fail to provide contact information: addresses, telephone numbers and email addresses. We need more than just a PO box, especially when your mail is only picked up once or twice a month. At a minimum we need club contact information and the addresses of the 3 people that you designate to receive the CFMS Newsletter. If you don't want your officer's addresses, etc. published, please state that and Pat won't publish them in the roster. However, they need to be on file with our Executive Secretary so that CFMS can contact your club.

The Information from your Officer Change Form is used to prepare the Society Roster. The Society Roster is your link to the Federation and its member societies; it tells us who you are, where you are, where and when you hold your meetings, to whom to send the CFMS Newsletters and how to contact you. The sooner this information is provided the sooner the new officers will start receiving their CFMS Newsletter. Update the names of the people who are to receive the AFMS Newsletter with the AFMS Office, also. It is extremely important that each society provide an email address/contact as well as a telephone number. Email is faster and less expensive. It is also very helpful to at least include email addresses for the Bulletin Editor and Field Trip Chairman.

When paging through this year's roster I was amazed at how many societies had no email address listed and several without any telephone number listed. I am contacted on occasion by interested rockhounds looking for a local club in their area but all I can tell that there is a club but no way to contact them. A lost opportunity for everyone!

Please send your dues payment, membership list and officers change form to Pat La Rue before the end of January.

California Federation of Mineralogical Societies
Annual Field Trip to
Gold Rock Ranch Area

By Bob Fitzpatrick
CFMS Field Trip Chairman •   South, 2006

 Bob Fitzpatrick

This trip is open to all rockhounds that agree to abide by the AFMS Code of Ethics, the directions of the field trip leader, and practice safe rockhounding. A Consent and Assumption of Risk Waiver of Liability form must be signed upon arriving at the campsite.

TRIP LOCATION -Gold Rock Ranch, 12 miles west of Yuma AZ on S-34 (Ogilby Road).

WHEN - December 1, 2, 3, 2006.

SPONSOR - CFMS Field Trip, South.


MATERIAL TO COLLECT - Dumortierite, Petrified Palm Wood, Kyanite and much more.

LEADER - Bob Fitzpatrick. Please notify the Ranch by 11/29/06, Talk to Bobbie the manager, (928) 919-6220 or (928) 920-0603 if you plan on attending. Feel free to call or email me if you have any questions or need more information:
Phone: (951) 845-3051

PROPOSED SCHEDULE - Each day we will be going to different collecting areas. All trips will leave at 9:00 a.m. SHARP (Arizona time) from the campgrounds. Assemble at 8:45 for details and instructions for each day's trip.

DIRECTIONS TO CAMPSITE - The ranch is located 12 miles west of Yuma on I-8, then north on S-34 (Ogilby Road). Go 9 miles on S-34, then turn left on Gold Rock Ranch Road, go 1-1/2 miles and you're there. Please check-in at the ranch office in the store.

VEHICLES - The roads to the ranch and campgrounds should be okay for most cars, trailers and motor homes. From the campsite to the collecting areas, 4wheel drive or high clearance vehicles are recommended.

TOOLS - Collecting bags and boxes, digging tools, rock hammer, eye gear, spray water bottle, etc., Be sure to bring your camp chair to sit in at night around the campfire at night.

SAFETY CONCERNS - Do not lick the rocks, use sun screen when needed, stay away from rattlesnakes, use bug spray, be aware of flash floods, be aware of things around you, team up with a buddy and don't get lost.

WEATHER - We are planning on nice weather-sunny days; cool, clear, star filled nights. But remember, it can rain this time of year so be prepared and plan ahead.

CAMPGROUNDS & FACILITIES: If you want to camp on the ranch, the fee is $20.00 per night, if we have a large group they will lower the fee to $10.00 per night, you will have the use of the restrooms, showers and much more. They have a few cabins for rent (first come first serve). If you plan on staying on the ranch please call the ranch and talk to Bobbie the manager at (928) 919-6220 or (928) 920-0603; their website is You can dry camp just outside the ranch, no water, no services, no toilets, at no cost, or if you prefer, there are motel accommodations in Yuma, AZ.

ENTERTAINMENT AND FOOD AT THE RANCH: Friday night there will entertainment at the ranch for us to enjoy, On weekends they have a Chuck wagon breakfast where you can eat before heading out on the field trips.

GENERAL INFORMATION: Please come and join us for the day or camp out with us. Bring your food, lots of water, cell-phone, walkie-talkies, GPS, first aide kit, camera, flashlight and lots of firewood. In the evenings we will all join together and have a good old time around the campfire, roasting marshmallows, telling jokes and remembering the special times we've shared with friends. Please call the ranch and let them know you are coming. I should be arriving at the ranch around noon on Friday.

Earth Science

By Cal Clason, Chairman

Cal Clason

Another outing at Camp Paradise has come and gone, although it is not one I care to remember. I have the impression that those who attended enjoyed the seminar. From a monetary point of view it was anything but successful. Because of confusion, uncertainty and misinformation attendance was below the level that was needed to pay the bills. Consequently, for only the second time in more than twenty years, we were forced to use our contingency fund. In the past we have been able to contribute to the General Fund to help CFMS continue its role in promoting our hobby. It was a wake up call for the Earth Sciences Committee to more closely scrutinize their commitment to any course of actions. To use one of Senator Feinstein's more illustrious comments: "we don't have a deficit, only a shortfall of income."

On to more pleasant things, we hope. Our upcoming seminar at the Desert Studies Center at Zzyzx on March 18-25, 2007 is fast approaching. As with most other things the cost are going. Fortunately we had enough advance notice of this that preventive measures were put in place so from all projections we are on safe ground for this session. Much to our regret it was a necessity to increase the registration fee to $300 per person for the week. Even at that price I feel that it is still a bargain. I cannot think of anywhere else one can get lodging or RV space, meals, training in selected areas, outstanding rock collecting, some evening entertainment, and the fellowship that is prevalent without a much greater expense.

Again this year Tom Burchard will hold forth as lapidary instructor. Margaret Kolaczyk will teach you the basics and finer points of soft stone carving. Dale Nichols is highly qualified to share his knowledge and expertise in wire wrapping. Betty Egger will show some of the things you can do with enamel and a bit of flame; there is always a fired up group of people doing a variety of silver work with the help of Maryann Anderson, assisted this by Patty Tostenson. This is her first year as an instructor, but she is immanently qualified in all phases of silverwork. Last, but not least, Francis Pedneau has been scouting new areas for some of his very productive field trips.

Eric Lindermann has again agreed to handle the catering and kitchen staffing. When things get a little slow he can liven it up rather quickly with a few songs on a banjo, and he is a master at it. We will probably have Dick Flaherty in attendance. He not only has some interesting slide presentations, but will quite often break out his guitar and do an impromptu sing-a-long while enticing everyone to join in. Along with our usual Sell-a-Rama, silent Auction, and Show & Tell it is shaping up to be a fun filled week.

To the best of my knowledge Audrey Harvey is still accepting registrations, and should all the rooms be filled, applications will be placed on stand-by status. We are very limited on the number of rooms/dormitories available. We will make every effort to accommodate all who prefer the RV lifestyle.

Come join us for a fun fulled week•  March 28-25, 2007.

I'm A New Member

From Canaveral Moonstone via Cobb-L-Stones, 9/94

I see you at the meetings
but you never say "Hello"
You're busy all the time you're there,
With those you already know.
I sit amongst the people; Yet I'm a lonesome guy;
The "New Members" are as strange as I,
and the "Old Timers" pass me by.
But darn it, you people asked me in,
And you talked of fellowship;
You could just step across the room,
But you never make the trip.
Why can't you nod and say "Hello"
Or stop to shake my hand,
Then go sit among your friends?
Now that I'd understand.
I'll be at the next meeting,
Perhaps a nice evening to spend;
Do you think you could introduce
I want to be your Friend.

Carrizo Plain Advisory Committee Appointed

Reprinted from: News.bytes, issue 238 - BLM California
Submitted by John Martin, CFMS PLAC South

John Martin

The Carrizo Plain National Monument Advisory Committee has been appointed by Secretary of the Interior Dirk Kempthorne.

The nine member committee advises the Secretary and the Bureau of Land Management on resource management issues at the monument, which sits on the border between San Luis Obispo and Kern counties. Committee members serve three-year terms and can apply for reappointment.

"The Carrizo Plain, one of America's great landscapes, is home to diverse communities of wildlife and plant species, is an area culturally important to Native Americans and is traversed by the San Andreas Fault," said Ron Huntsinger, BLM Bakersfield Field Office manager. "I look forward to the committee's advice and recommendations as we work together to manage these valuable public lands."

The following council members were reappointed to new terms:

  • Dale Kuhnle, Santa Margarita, a rancher representing those authorized to graze livestock.
  • Neil Havlik, PhD (Chairman), San Luis Obispo, natural resources manager for the city of San Luis Obispo representing the public-at-large.
  • Ellen Cypher, PhD, Bakersfield, a plant ecologist and research ecologist with the Endangered Species Recovery Program representing the public-at-large.
  • Michael Khus-Zarate, Fresno, an educator and member of the Carrizo Plain Native American Advisory Council.
  • Raymond Watson, Bakersfield, a member of the Kern County Board of Supervisors, District 4.
New members appointed to the council are:

  • Jim Patterson, Atascadero, a member of the San Luis Obispo County Board of Supervisors, District 5.
  • Carl Twisselman, McKittrick, a rancher and member of the BLM Central California Resource Advisory Committee.
  • Raymond Hatch, Taft, former mayor of Taft representing the public-at-large.
  • Robert Pavlik, San Luis Obispo, environmental planner representing the public-at-large.
For more information on the monument, contact:
Johna Hurl,
assistant monument mgr. at the Bureau of Land Management,
Bakersfield Field Office,
3801 Pegasus Drive,
Bakersfield, CA 93308,
telephone (661) 391-6093,
or e-mail,
or go to Internet website

Make a statement, Be a Demonstrator

By Diana Paradis

It has been a few months since I first put out the call for SKILLED ARTISANS to sign up for the Demonstrator's Directory. A few talented people have signed up to be listed in the Directory, but I feel that the overall response could have been much better!

People helping people is not a new or foreign idea. The Demonstrator's Directory is based upon this idea. When a person lists their name in the Directory as a demonstrator they are making a statement. They are stating that they care about keeping lapidary, and related skills, alive by spreading their knowledge among others. They are stating that by teaching a skill they can be ambassadors between clubs, spreading comradeship and good will. They are stating that they care about what happens to each and every club in the CFMS, large or small.

For those of you that need to be mentally refreshed, the Demonstrator's Directory is a list of skilled people, young and old, male and female, that are willing to share their skill and knowledge with other clubs. To share this skill a person could (1) travel to another club with a presentation of "this is how its done, you can do it too (2) come to your club shop, or classes, to demonstrate and teach hands on (3) give open demonstrations at a rock show or event.

To make the Demonstrator's Directory a success it is time for everyone to think about what role they can play in its future. Whether you are a skilled artisan, someone wanting to learn a skill, or a club wanting to expand its knowledge I need to hear from you. I need instructors, I need clubs who want demonstrations, and I need input from those who have helpful suggestions. The Directory will benefit everyone in the CFMS for decades to come, be a part of its success.


Diana Paradis
P.O. Box 1923,
Vacaville CA 95696,
(707) 447-5271, or

Instructor's forms can be found online at the CFMS site or obtained from your Federation Director.

Help Prevent Home Water Damage

By Bill and Izzie Burns

Bill & Izzie Burns

When we returned from the AFMS Convention and Show, we were met with water damage caused by a broken refrigerator ice maker line. The house had water everywhere, mold and mildew in the carpet and walls, warped parquet floor, etc. Two months later repair work is still not complete. State Farm Insurance is being very helpful so I'd like to share what they recommend to reduce water claims. Anyone of these could prevent much stress.

  • Turn off the water supply to the washing machine after each use.
  • During freezing conditions, allow water faucets to drip and keep cabinet doors open; insulate pipes that are exposed and accessible.
  • Have the roof inspected for wear and replace as needed.
  • Inspect the water heater for signs of leaking or corrosion regularly.
  • Know where and how to turn off water to the house.
  • Inspect washing machine hoses, supply line, ice makers, dishwashers, and other appliances that use water.
  • Turn off water at the main line when you are going to be away from the house for an extended period of time.
  • When going on a vacation, ask a neighbor, friend or relative to check your home several times while you are away.
  • If your city has a Neighborhood Vacation Protection Plan which checks the outside of your house frequently, sign up for it.

We now have a copper ice maker line and when we are away from home for some time, we will give a neighbor a key to check our house and will sign up for the Monterey Park Vacation Protection Plan.

Safety for the Holiday Season
(to me, it's still the Christmas Season)

By Chuck McKie, Safety Chairman
From The American Red Cross Safety Bulletin Fall 2003

Chuck McKie

Holiday Stress Busters

The holidays are supposed to be a time of warmth, joy and excitement. And for many people, they are. Still, the anxiety of having too much to do in too little time, the pressure of unrealistic expectations and the tendency to overeat and overspend can easily overshadow holiday happiness.

You're familiar with the symptoms of stress•  a pounding heart, increased perspiration, tight neck and shoulder muscles, anxiety and fear. But you may not know how to prevent or relieve these symptoms. How can you handle stressors you can't change? The stress busters below are just a sampling of techniques you can use to reduce stress. Try some of these to help you cope with daily stress.

Stress Buster #1: Relaxation Breathing
Sit down at your desk. Close your eyes. Breathe slowly through your nose, thinking in. Now let the air escape, thinking out. Focus on pleasant thoughts while slowly breathing in and out. Imagine the next breath you take carrying relaxation over your face, scalp and the sides of your head. Your next breath carries relaxation to your shoulders, then to the upper arms, forearms, hands, chest, stomach, hips, knees, calves, ankles and feet. Do this for about five minutes.

Stress Buster #2: Muscle Relaxation
Choose a muscle and tense it for about 10 seconds. Then release it for 15-20 seconds. Do this with each major muscle group in your entire body. Notice how relaxed your muscle groups become.

Stress Buster #3: Imagery
Sit down. Close your eyes. Imagine the beach at sunset, a walk in the woods on a bright fall day, sitting by the fireplace with snow falling outside, or any other scene that brings a sense of peace and relaxation. Do this for about five minutes.

Stress Buster #4: Shoulder Shrugs and Squeezes
Sit down and slowly raise your shoulders toward your ears. Hold for a few seconds. Slowly bring your shoulders down. Relax. Repeat three times. Next, put your hands up. Push your arms back, squeezing your shoulder blades. Hold for a few seconds. Relax. Repeat three times.

Stress Buster #5: Exercise
Take a brisk walk, or if your doctor approves, participate in something more vigorous, such as jogging, swimming or another aerobic activity. Try doing this every day or at least three times every week. Being physically fit helps you to better cope with stress. Without a doubt, exercise is one of the most effective ways to reduce stress and tension. Exercise releases natural brain chemicals called endorphins. These chemicals make you feel calm and relaxed.

Stress Buster #6: Time Management
Make a list of everything you want to do today. Prioritize your list and complete the most important tasks that require the most energy and resources first. Delegate as much as possible. Avoid anything that wastes your time. And ask for help when you need it.

To learn the facts on the causes of stress and how to develop stress-reduction strategies for work and personal lives, contact your local Red Cross chapter about our one-hour Managing Stress training module.

Don't Take a Holiday from Safety

As temperatures fall and visions of sugar plums dance in the heads of many, the American Red Cross urges families not to take a "holiday" from safety. Christmas trees and candles, symbols of the joyous season, can also prove dangerous, and supplemental home heating equipment such as space heaters are a major cause of fire. According to the National Fire Protection Association, a home fire is reported to a fire department in the United States every 1•   minutes, and someone dies in a home fire every 2•   hours. In addition, cold weather is a contributor to seasonal emergencies because it can cause illnesses such as frostbite and hypothermia.

"Many of the fires and cold weather-related emergencies that occur during this time of the year can be avoided," says Connie Harvey, Red Cross national health and safety expert. "As always with emergencies such as these, prevention and preparedness are key."

Harvey offers the following tips to help keep families safe this season:

  1. Dress appropriately before going outdoors. "The air temperature does not have to be below freezing for someone to experience cold emergencies such as hypothermia and frostbite. Wind speed can create dangerously cold conditions even when the temperature is not that low," she points out.
  2. Recognize the symptoms of cold weather illnesses such as hypothermia and frostbite. Symptoms of hypothermia include confusion, dizziness, exhaustion and severe shivering. Warning signs of frostbite include gray, white or yellow skin discoloration. "Both are serious, so if any of these conditions are present, seek medical attention immediately," Harvey says.
  3. Keep Christmas trees fresh. Place your tree away from heat sources and exits; water it daily. Make sure your artificial tree is fire-retardant.
  4. Be careful with candles and decorate only with flame-retardant or non-combustible materials - Keep candles away from combustible materials. Don't leave children unattended in a room with lit candles. Keep candles, matches and lighters out of the reach of children. Never display lighted candles in windows or near exits.
  5. Inspect fireplaces and wood stoves. Have your chimney connections and flues inspected by a professional and cleaned if necessary prior to the start of the heating season. "Burn only wood-never burn paper, including discarded gift wrap, or pine boughs, and if you plan to hang stockings on your fireplace, do not use the fireplace for fires," cautions Harvey.
  6. Check smoke alarms - Make sure alarms are working properly and that new batteries are installed.
  7. Be aware of overuse of electrical outlets - Don't overload your electrical outlets. Be careful of extension cords that present hazardous walkways.
  8. Have one or more working fire extinguishers in your home - Get training from the fire department in how to use them.
  9. Be sure your car is prepared. "Before hitting the road, let someone know your route, final destination and expected arrival time," says Harvey. It is also a good idea to have a disaster supplies kit for the car that includes: a flashlight with fresh batteries, battery-powered radio and extra batteries, blankets or sleeping bags, booster cables, a fire extinguisher, bottled water and non-perishable high-energy foods (granola bars, raisins and peanut butter), a compass, road maps, shovel, tire repair kit and pump, flares, extra clothing, a sack of sand or cat litter (for tire traction), tow rope, knife and first aid kit with a manual.
  10. Enroll in a first aid, CPR and AED course. Although these tips can help prevent an emergency, it is also important to be prepared should an emergency situation arise. To enroll in a first aid, CPR or AED course, contact your local American Red Cross.

Scientists Discover New Element: Administerium

Original source not known, via Conglomerate, 3/92

The heaviest element known to science was recently discovered by university physicists. The element, initially named Administerium (Ad) has no protons or electrons which means that its atomic number is zero. However, it does have on neutron, 125 assistants to the neutron, 75 vice neutrons and 111 assistants to the neutrons, giving it an atomic mass of 312. The 312 particles are held together in the nucleus by a force which involves the continuous exchange of meson-like particles call memos. Since it has no electrons, Administerium is inert. However, it can be detected chemically because it impedes every reaction in which it is present. One discoverer noted that it extended one split-second reaction into a two-day continuum.

Administerium has a half life of 18 months to 2 years. At the end of this time, it does not actually decay but rather undergoes some sort of reorganization in which the assistants to the newutron the assistants to the vice neutrons seem to exchange places. Early studies indicate that its mass actually increases after each reorganization.

According to one researcher, Administerium seems to occur naturally in the atmosphere on university campuses and in large corporate and government centers, usually near well appointed and maintained office buildings. Researchers have not yet identified any useful benefit or need the element might fulfill.

Oil and Gas Firms Honored

By John Martin PGMC - P.L.A.C. South

John Martin

Not all Petroleum companies do bad things for the environment or destroy the land they have under lease while trying to keep us and the rest of the world moving. The article below is from the BLM California News Bites, Issue 254 - 10/24/06. More information on this and other BLM Information can be found at

Three Oil and Gas Firms Honored by BLM
Three firms were presented with awards by the Bureau of Land Management today at the biennial Oil and Gas Conference in Bakersfield in recognition of their efforts to protect the environment while operating federal oil and gas leases.

Plains Exploration and Production Company, Los Angeles, received the Oil and Gas Operator of the Year Award on Public Lands for habitat conservation and wildlife protection measures. "While operating 18 federal leases in California, you have demonstrated that operations can be conducted in a manner which is sensitive to environmental concerns," BLM State Director Mike Pool said in the award letter.

Plains Exploration also was recently recognized by BLM Director Kathleen Clarke with the 2006 award for Habitat Conservation Through the Use of Best Management Practices. The habitat conservation plan developed by Plains set aside 1,250 acres to compensate for impacts to endangered species habitat. Chevron Corp., Bakersfield, received the State Director's Award for their environmental work on 13 federal leases. "For the past three years, your staff has worked closely with BLM on the Lost Hills Water Flood Expansion project, which has involved drilling approximately 50 wells," Pool said in the award letter. "Several proposed locations were moved to less environmentally sensitive areas and were designed to disturb the smallest area possible."

Matris Exploration Company, The Woodlands, Texas, received the 2006 Special Conservation Achievement Award. Matris began operating its first leases in California this year. The leases are located in the Kettleman Hills and contain important endangered species habitat.

Matris purchased compensation lands, oriented well pads to avoid wildlife burrows, conducted training for field staff and employed biologists to monitor activities and prevent take of blunt-nosed leopard lizards. "You've gone beyond BLM's requirements and taken additional actions to mitigate impacts from your drilling operation," Pool said in the letter.

Bakersfield Field Office, 3801 Pegasus Dr.,
Bakersfield, CA 93308

It Was A Pleasure

By Pat La Rue

Pat La Rue

I enjoyed the opportunity to serve again as the editor of the CFMS Newsletter for the past year. I hope you have enjoyed receiving the bulletin as much as I enjoyed producing it for you. I have always considered editing newsletters to be my favorite job and would be willing to consider the challenge again in the future if asked.

This is my last issue and I'm passing the challenge of producing this newsletter to C J Quitoriano, the newly elected 2nd Vice President. Please support her with your articles and input as much as you supported me this past year. The deadline remains the 5th of each month.

Her contact information is on page 2. She will accept your articles electronically or by snail mail. Electronic mail is probably preferred because it minimizes the amount of retyping required. She can open Word and Wordperfect files without a problem. Please do not send your articles to me. I would forward them but if I am away from my office and not checking e-mail during that time it could cause unnecessary delay and possibly result in your article not being received in time for publication.

As Executive Secretary, I maintain the mailing list so any change of address should come to me, not C J.