Sherman County eNews #338


  1. Finding Happiness

  2. Prager University: The Key to Unhappiness

  3. Workshops in Agriculture, Nov. 27-28

  4. Phillip Gilman

  5. James A. “Jack” Cushman 1928-2017

  6. Fire Safety Front & Center on Your Holiday Menu

  7. Oregon Employers will see Lower Unemployment Tax Rates in 2018

  8. Links: Things to Think About & Things to Do

For the beauty of the earth, For the beauty of the skies, For the love which from our birth Over and around us lies; For the wonder of each hour Of the day and of the night, Hill and vale, and tree and flower, Sun and moon, and stars of light; For the joy of ear and eye, For the heart and mind’s delight, For the mystic harmony Linking sense to sound and sight… Lord of all, to Thee we raise This our hymn of grateful praise.  ~Folliot S. Pierpoint, 1864; Conrad Kocher, 1838 The Hymn Book (Presbyterian). 

1. Finding Happiness

Everyone wants to be happy, but not everyone knows how to go about getting there. Today, let’s talk about a couple of ways to be happy.

How do you define “happiness”? Some people think happiness is getting all or most of the things they want. They always have lists of new things they want or are about to get: cars, vacations, fancy clothes, new furniture, or the latest electronic toy. With the holidays fast approaching, these lists get more definite and, occasionally, grow larger!

However, often these people are deeply discontented, for no matter how much they acquire; they never seem to have enough. A new acquisition brings them pleasure, but only for a little while. Happiness is always in the future, always appearing, and then disappearing.

Someone once said that there are two ways to be happy: the first is to have all the things you want; the second is to have the wisdom to enjoy the things you have. To this, let’s add a third: that happiness is wanting what you have. You probably have your own definition of happiness, because, really, there are as many ways to define “happiness” as there are people on the planet.

When you practice the “wisdom” way, you are able to appreciate the beauty that exists in the simplest elements of life. Even in hardship, you’ll find many reasons to feel joy on a daily basis. Sure, you’ll feel good when you acquire something new, but your real and lasting happiness will be found in relationships, in simple pleasures, in nature, and in actions that show love.

If you remember that the time to be happy is now, and the place to be happy is where you are, you will find a joy that no amount of money can buy. ~The Pacific Institute

2. Prager University: The Key to Unhappiness


3. Workshops in Agriculture, Nov. 27-28

Ag workshops!

Enroll in these three-hour non-credit workshops to enhance your skills!

November 27 & 28

Blue Mountain Community College Precision Irrigated Agriculture Facility

OSU HAREC campus

2121 S. 1st Street, Hermiston, Oregon 


Contact Jan Keough, BMCC Office of Instruction or 541-278-5969

Monday, November 27:

Practical Welding Proceses 9-12 $30

Designing Irrigation Systems 1-4 $30

Tuesday, November 28:

Understanding Soil 9-12 $30

Safety on the Farm 1-4 $30

4. Phillip Gilman

flower.rose.starPhillip Roy Gilman, age 75, a resident of The Dalles, Oregon, passed away November 8, 2017, at a local care facility. Services were held on November 13 at Spooky’s in The Dalles.


5. James A. “Jack” Cushman 1928-2017

flower.rose.starJames Alexander “Jack” Cushman was born February 20, 1928 to Virgil Eugene Cushman and Alvena (Howard) Cushman, and died on October 29, 2017. He was the brother of Howard, Betty, wife of Willard Andrew Hamlin, and Mary Ann, wife of Lewis Nelson Crocker, and grandson of Eugene Albert Cushman and Penelope Isabelle “Nellie” (Woods) Cushman. These families lived in Sherman, Gilliam, Umatilla and Jefferson counties. He was a 1949 graduate of Oregon State College, served in the U.S. Air Corps Reserve, and operated the International Harvester dealership in Moro. In 1952 he married Connie Wilson and they had two children, Jeanne Anita (1956-   ) and Michael Ray (1957-1965).

6. Fire Safety Front & Center on Your Holiday Menu

Thanksgiving.RunTurkeyWith Thanksgiving just a few days away, State Fire Marshal Jim Walker is reminding Oregonians to keep fire safety front and center when cooking and preparing holiday meals.

“When friends and family gather at this festive time of year, don’t let it be marred by tragedy,” says Walker. “By following a few fire prevention tips, you can keep yourself and loved ones safe.”

From 2012 through 2016, there were more than 3,600 cooking-related fires reported in Oregon causing seven deaths, 200 injuries, and more than $33 million in property loss.

Cooking safety tips:
* Keep a close eye on your cooking; never leave cooking food unattended. If you leave the kitchen, turn off the stove or set a timer.
* Keep your cooking area clean, including stovetop, burners, oven, and exhaust fan.
* Keep anything that can catch fire – oven mitts, wooden utensils, dishtowels, and food packaging away from your stovetop.
* Wear clothing that will not dangle onto stove burners and catch fire.
* Keep pot and pan handles turned inward on the stove to avoid bumping them and spilling hot foods.
* Heat cooking oil slowly and never leave it unattended.
* Have a “kid-free zone” of at least three feet around the stove and areas where hot foods or drinks are prepared or carried.

If you have a cooking fire:
* Always keep a lid nearby to smother small grease fires. Smother the flames by carefully sliding the lid over the pan. Turn off the burner and don’t move the pan until it is completely cool.
* Never pour water on a grease fire; it can splatter the grease and spread the fire.
* In the event of a fire in your oven or microwave, turn them off and keep the doors closed.
* When in doubt, get out! Call 9-1-1 after you leave.

Make sure you have smoke alarms on every level of your home, outside each sleeping area, and in every bedroom. Test smoke alarms monthly and replace them if they are 10 years old or older.

Turkey fryer safety:
The OSFM agrees with the National Fire Protection Association in discouraging the use of outdoor gas-fueled turkey fryers that cook the turkey in hot oil. The use of deep fat turkey fryers can lead to devastating burns, other injuries, and the destruction of property.

However, if you use a fryer, the OSFM urges you to use extreme caution.

“If you’re cooking your turkey in a deep fat fryer, always do it outdoors a safe distance from buildings, deck railings, and any other flammable material, and never leave it unattended,” advises State Fire Marshal Jim Walker. “Hot oil is extremely dangerous, never use turkey fryers on a wooden deck or in your garage.”

More turkey fryer safety tips:
* Lower and raise food slowly to reduce splatter and prevent burns.
* Cover bare skin when adding or removing food from the fryer.
* Make sure to have at least two feet of space between the propane tank and the fryer burner.
* If the oil begins to smoke, immediately turn the fryer gas supply off and leave the pot uncovered to cool.

For more information on cooking safety, visit:

For more information on general home fire safety, visit:

7. Oregon Employers will see Lower Unemployment Tax Rates in 2018

Oregon.Flat.poleUnemployment tax rates for most Oregon employers will be lower in 2018. Tax rates will drop to schedule three for employers that pay into the unemployment insurance system.

Tax schedule three includes an average rate of 1.97% for the first $39,300 paid to each employee. In 2017 Oregon operated on schedule four which had an average rate of 2.26%. The specific rate each employer will pay under the new schedule depends on how much they have used the unemployment insurance system.

Oregon annually adjusts employer tax rates using eight tax schedules based on the solvency of the Unemployment Insurance Trust Fund. Movement between the eight schedules of tax rates represents part of the self-balancing aspects of Oregon’s Unemployment Insurance Trust Fund law. Each September a formula contained in state law determines how much should be collected during the next year to maintain a solvent fund. Each schedule has a range of tax rates based on an employer’s previous Unemployment Insurance experience.

The last time Oregon was on tax schedule three was in 2009. A healthy economy and strong job growth helped to contribute to the reduction.

As a result of this approach, Oregon has one of the strongest trust funds in the nation. The trust fund provides support for temporarily unemployed workers, their families, and communities while minimizing the impact on employers. This approach allows this support without having to reduce benefits to workers, increase employer taxes, or borrow from the federal government as most other states had to do for the Great Recession.

The Oregon Employment Department mailed notifications to businesses last week regarding their individual tax rates and encourages employers to wait until they receive their individual notice before attempting to contact the department with questions. Any employer who has not received their notice within the next couple of weeks should contact the Oregon Employment Department Unemployment Insurance Tax Section. Contact information may be found online at

8. Links: Things to Think About & Things to Do

bird.owl.limbThe Middle East’s Problems Are Really Our Problems

Prager U.: The Key to Unhappiness

Don’t be silly! Use these !!!!! sparingly!


Parents’ Choice | Children’s Media & Toy Review


Charity Navigator | Your Guide to Intelligent Giving

Healthy Forests, Healthy Communities


Healthy Forests, Healthy Communities: Pacific Northwest Region

Walden cheers House-passed tax reform; Wyden slams Senate plan


Space Weather: Interstellar Asteroid, Atmospheric Radiation Data, Photos

Treasury Dept. Blows Off Order to Recoup $8.1 Mil Wasted on Parties, Gifts, Lunches

Editorial: Ethics process is too slow

The Inconvenient Truth About Electric Vehicles



Sherman County eNews #337


  1. Folksongs of the Winter Holidays, Dec. 5

  2. Open Pickleball Court at the Wasco Gym, Nov. 29, Dec. 6, 13, 20

  3. Retired Teachers to Hear Scott McKay on Mid-Columbia Senior Center, Nov. 21

  4. Notice: Sherman County SWCD Board of Directors Meeting, Nov. 30

  5. Sherman County Holiday Bazaar, Dec. 2

  6. Special Statewide Election – January 23, 2018     

  7. Getting Un-Comfortable

  8. Historic Osborne Fire Lookout Photo Collection

  9. Links: Things to Think About & Things to Do

1. Folksongs of the Winter Holidays, Dec. 5

Logo.ShermanPub.School.Library2017Sherman County Public/School Library presents Folksongs of the Winter Holidays. Adam Miller will be performing well-known and not-so-well known traditional folk songs and carols for New Year’s, Hanukkah, Christmas and the Winter Solstice.  Please join us Tuesday, December 5 at 6:00 p.m. as we celebrate the season.


2. Open Pickleball Court at the Wasco Gym, Nov. 29, Dec. 6, 13, 20

Come join us and learn a new game.  We have installed a court in the gym at the Wasco School Events Center.  Bo and Mary Macnab will be available from 10 a.m. to noon on the following dates to help you learn the basics.  Please wear clean shoes.  We have four racquets available for beginners.





Questions?  Call Mary at 442-5450.

3. Retired Teachers to Hear Scott McKay on Mid-Columbia Senior Center, Nov. 21

Unit 20, Oregon Retired Teachers, will meet noon, Tuesday the 21st, at Bent River Restaurant.  Program will be presented by Scott McKay, Executive Director of the Mid-Columbia Senior Center.  Luncheon reservations may be made with Wilma Townsend at 541-296-4356.

4. Notice: Sherman County SWCD Board of Directors Meeting, Nov. 30

The Sherman County Soil and Water Conservation District board of directors will be holding a meeting Thursday November 30th at 8:30am. In the district office, 302 Scott Street, Moro, Oregon.

5. Sherman County Holiday Bazaar, Dec. 2

Sherman County Holiday Bazaar


Sponsored by Sherman County Fair Board

Saturday, December 2nd

10 until 3:30

Sherman County School Cafeteria

Moro, Oregon

Questions? Call Beth McCurdy 541-980-1821



6. Special Statewide Election – January 23, 2018                

ORStateFlagPlease find attached the ballot measure statement for the statewide ballot measure that will be on the January 23, 2018, Statewide Special Election ballot. This measure was referred to the people by Referendum.  This will be the only question that will appear on the ballot and will be numbered Measure 101. [Editorial note:,_Healthcare_Insurance_Premiums_Tax_for_Medicaid_Referendum_(2018)%5D

The final day to register to vote in this election is January 2.  Voter registration cards postmarked by this date or an online registration submitted no later than 11:59pm are valid. Voter registration or information updates can be done online at:    Registration cards can be obtained at any post office, Department of Motor Vehicles, and the county clerk’s office or printed from:

If you are a Military or an Overseas Voter please visit the Federal Voting Assistance Program (FVAP) webpage

Voters’ pamphlets will be mailed to every household between December 27 and 29. Ballots will be mailed by January 9. It’s important to update your voter registration if you have moved or changed your mailing address. The Postal Service cannot forward ballots. An absentee ballot can be requested if you will be away from home and would like to receive your ballot at a different address. To obtain an absentee ballot request form, please contact the clerk’s office or print one at home:

Your voted ballot must be received on or before 8:00pm on Election Day or it will not be counted. Postmarks do not count. The ballot return envelope can be stamped and mailed or dropped off at any official county drop site across the state. If a voter casts their ballot after the Wednesday before an election, the ballot should be left at an official drop box site to ensure it’s counted.  Our white drop boxes are labeled “Official Sherman County Ballot Drop Site” and are located near the following offices:

Rufus City Maintenance Building – 400 Main Street – To the right of the city drop box

Wasco City Hall – 1017 Clark Street – Located just uphill from the stop sign between the sidewalk and street

Grass Valley City Hall – 109 SW Mill Street – To the left of the city drop box

Sherman County Courthouse – 500 Court Street, Moro – In the clerk’s office

Please call the Sherman County Clerk’s Office at 541-565-3606 if: you do not receive a ballot; you make a mistake on your ballot; your ballot is damaged or destroyed; you lose your ballot; you need an absentee ballot; you have any other ballot or voting problems; you are in need of further assistance.  Please be sure to sign your ballot return envelope.

7. Getting Un-Comfortable

It has been said that people can get used to almost anything. If it happens gradually over time and in small enough increments, this seems to be true. And, when you become used to things being a certain way, you develop what is called a comfort zone around them. When you are in your comfort zone, you don’t really have to think too much about it.

If you are used to cleaning up your house every day because you like things neat and tidy, it will put you out of your comfort zone to wake up in the morning and see a sink full of dirty dishes. You will generally make sure that doesn’t happen or spend your time ignoring your kitchen. If, on the other hand, you are used to seeing a sink full of dirty dishes every morning when you get up, it won’t bother you at all.

If you are expecting company though, the things you have gotten used to and comfortable with may suddenly become very un-comfortable.  “That’s okay for me,” you may think, “but I don’t want my company to see it like that.” Do you know people who go on crash diets before a school reunion or other special event? This is the same type of thing.

Take a look at your life. Are there things you have gotten used to, bit by bit, that surprise you a little now? Give up the facade for company! You are worthy of the same consideration and the same high standards you display for others. What are the things in your life that you have gotten used to, things that are not to your standards? It is time to make a comfort zone change!

Do it for yourself – because you deserve it! ~The Pacific Institute

8. Historic Osborne Fire Lookout Photo Collection

tree.evergreen–The Nature Conservancy |

Each photo in this collection was taken with a photo-recording transit designed by W.B. Osborne, the Regional Forest Inspector during the project, and custom built by Leupold – Volpel & Company of Portland Oregon. The camera rotated as each photo was taken minimizing lens distortion across the photo. The photos were recorded on 14 -1/4″ by 5 – 1/2″ negatives, three sets of contact prints were made for each photo. Along the top edge of the photo the azimuth (compass bearing) was recorded directly onto the film. Vertical angles measurement was recorded along the left and right edges of the print. Also, recorded were the date, location and elevation of each photo. There were three standard photo setups taken at each lookout: the north view (60 and 180 degrees) taken around noon, the south-east view (60 to 180 degrees) taken around 3:00 PM, the South-west view (180 to 300 degrees) taken around 9:00 AM. Many of the photos taken during and after 1934 used infrared sensitive film which reduced the effects of atmospheric haze on the images. The foliage of trees in infrared photos appear very bright because plants strongly reflect infrared light.

9. Links: Things to Think About & Things to Do

Bird.Black.EnvelopeHistoric Osborne Fire Lookout Photo Collection

Prager U. – What’s the truth about the first Thanksgiving?

The English language can be illogical

 “The standard of good behavior for the continuance in office … is certainly one of the most valuable of the modern improvements in the practice of government.” —Alexander Hamilton (1788)

The Economics of Food, Farming, Natural Resources and Rural America

Map Shows How Much Land the Government Owns In Every State

Public, private land boundaries blur in rural Central Oregon