Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Day 57: A bright, but cooler day

After a "fresh" grapefruit.....one of the many that we picked and brought over from Texas.......and a couple of hot steaming cups of Fr. Roast coffee........and a cup of tea for the 1st Lady....she was off to the Line Dancing class. I lazied around and drank some more coffee.....read the news online....and before I knew it, she had returned, an hour later.

We sat and talked.......discussed the next month's plans......and then Gail was knocking on the door. And......off went the 1st Lady with Gail and several other neighborhood wives into town for lunch. They were gone a couple of hours and during that time Mac returned from a doctor's appointment and he came over carrying his coffee cup. Reminds me of......me! Carrying my cup of Fr. Roast around the rv park or any place that I go.

He and I sat and talked about the Dr.'s advice....and questions that he asked Mac. It's all about Parkinson's........and the ways it is beginning to affect him. The ladies returned before long and then we all just sat and talked......had some cake and tea/coffee......and before long the afternoon was almost gone! TALK ABOUT A RELAXING DAY!!!!!!

And.....now the two hours of American Idol over over.......and WOW.....those girls can really sing!! I have no idea who I would vote for.....if I had any really good cell service, which I don't. There are at least four that I really do like.........can't at this point in time imagine any of the guys winning. Time will tell.......

And so....another day in the desert has expired......tomorrow is the neighborhood pizza party. Gail is making ALL of the pizza's and I KNOW how good her pizza are!!!! WOW.......I've been eating them for years, each time we are together, no matter where we are she manages to get the ingredients and a stove....and voila....we are eating incredible pizzas. CAN'T WAIT!!!!

With today....AND tomorrow in mind........of course,

Life is Great.....and I hope it is for all of you, also!!!!

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Three times taller and many times older than I am.....a fantastic cactus!!!

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Saguaro Sentinels of the Sonora Desert

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Looking out towards Tucson....

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Only rocks and cacti...AND the 1st Lady

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Picacho Peak behind this old man

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How high can it go????

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1st Lady is dwarfed by the soaring Saguaro Cactus

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Day 56: EIGHT WEEKS.....and having a blast!!!

AHHHHH, but we have broken our record of being on the road for 8 weeks......set way back in 1983 when we went to Alaska. It will be at least 4-5 more weeks before we return to our stick and brick......and we'll be there for less than 8 weeks before we hit the road again.

Today????? Another fantastic day.....it reached 83 degrees today with perfect blue sky.....albeit some rather strong winds blowing dust devils around in the desert. Sooooo, after a few cups of Fr. Roast coffee this morning, we jumped into the truck and headed south to Picacho State Park. The park is surrounding Picacho Peak which is a most unusual mountain.....the shape really not much like I have ever seen before. It also rises abruptly out of the desert.......is extremely rocky and covered with several different kinds of cacti. The most predominant one is the mighty and very long living Saguaro Cactus. The Saguaro grows for 75 years before it begins to grow the "arms" out of the side of it.......and they can grow to tremendous heights during their life-time. They also have the most interesting "skeleton" when they die....I will get a picture and post it when I can find one.

Sooooo, after driving the loops in the park, we returned to one of the loops from which you can take a short hike up to the "saddle" of the mt. and can see on both sides from that viewpoint. It was only a short hike....about a mile up and the same on the return down the mountain side. Now......this is all rock and cactus.....no trees...no flowers....just a desert mountain. But, the higher we hiked the better the views of the desert became........and the more we enjoyed it.

We sat for a few minutes when we reached the end of the trail.....and then returned back to the truck. After a stop at a "gift shop" (tourist trap), we drove back to Casa Grande and with a stop at Walmart and at a local supermarket we were soon on our way back to the RV Park.

The 1st Lady and I prepared dinner for Mac and Gail........my stuffed meat loaf, a corn casserole, tossed green salad, baked potatoes, fresh french bread, and an "earthquake" cake. Of course......Mac and I needed our evening dose of the dark red medicine.....and the ladies had some chilled white vino. I ate tooooo much.....but, hell......don't I always???????????? And my waist is certainly beginning to show this winter eating binges I have enjoyed. Hibernation it has not been!!!!

And so......my enlarging and very saggy hulk is sitting here in my recliner and wishing I had not eaten all of that wonderful food. Oh well...........I'll walk and bike an extra hour tomorrow!!!!

Much cooler weather is arriving tomorrow......and so my shorts will be put away for a couple of days. But........it makes no difference, does it......because......

Life is GREAT.....and I hope it is for all of you, also!!!
(Remember: If you don't think BIG.....nothing BIG will ever happen)

Monday, February 26, 2007

Lighting the heater for the patio....

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Bags of omelets-to-be


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Stirring the omelet bags

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FOOD...FOOD....and more FOOD!!


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Preparing the eggs and other ingredients....


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Eating more and more and more......


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UMMMM......soooo good!

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ALMOST toooo full to chat!!!

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Day 55: WOW.....a breakfast that lasts and lasts.....

OMG........after rising and getting some food items ready, the 1st Lady and I went over to Jan's park model.....she is a member of the "group" that hang out together on South Indiana Street here at the Sunscape RV Park. This was the morning of the BIG "Omelet in a Bag" breakfast.....and by the time everyone had gathered at 9am....there were 21 of us there. Now......you are asking about an "omelet in a bag"?????

There were two large pots of boiling water ready when we arrived......and everyone who came brought eggs and items to go into omelets. Soooo, we cracked the number of eggs we wanted in our own personal omelet, put the eggs into a plastic bag that could be sealed and then "massaged" the eggs.....yep, we had to squish them around until they were runny. THEN......we added all of the items we wanted in our omelet.....me? I added bacon bits, tomatoes, mushrooms, green peppers, and some salt/pepper. Then sealing up the bag I took it over to the boiling water....OH...I first wrote my name on the bag.....and then submerged it in the pot of water. Checking the time, I knew that it would only be 15 minutes and my omelet would be ready to eat.

Ok......sooooo, moving to the other table, I scooped up some incredibly delicious potatoes that had been cooked with cheese and sour cream, and who knows what else......WONDERFUL!!!! Then it was over to the other table and I got some hot biscuits and gravy.....WOW......soooooo damn good!!! And.....as my omelet cooked in the pot of boiling water........I ate and ate and ate , trying as many of the great breakfast preparations as I could. THEN.........the time was up and I pulled out MY bag and opening it, it was a perfect omelet with all of the extra goodies that I dumped into the bag INSIDE the egg omelet!!!!! WOW..........it was great!!!!! AND.......soooooo easy to make that fantastic Omelet in a Bag!!!! TRY IT!!!

By late morning.....after returning to TheHowserHouse.....I couldn't move my HUGE hulk. It was already easy to see that I wouldn't be eating for the rest of the day.....hahahaha!! Soooooo much food seemed to relocate into my insides..........sooooooo good, but sooooooo filling!!!

THEN.......I talked with my rv dealer, Walnut Ridge RV in New Castle, IN.....and confirmed that they WERE going to replace my "holey" bug infested table and chairs in the dining room. Recalling them, I asked how they wanted me to ship the infested items to them.......and after a call from my dealer to Forest River(the company that makes Cedar Creek RV's), they relayed the info to me to just "trash them"!! Sooooo, I got out my heavy mallet and began destroying the chairs, taking the screws out of the table post which had it screwed into the floor, and soon everything was broken wood. I then loaded it up and took it to the trash bin area on the northin end of the park....and threw EVERYTHING away!!! I had destroyed as much as I could so that no one would try to salvage it from the dumpster and wind up with bugs inside their RV.

My new ones will be shipped to me.....but probably will have to be sent to Missouri....as by the time they arrive at the dealer's, we will be on the road to Vegas, Grand Canyon, and Santa Fe., and then home.

The afternoon was spent riding our bikes for an hour......and then reading on the patio while I managed to sip down some of my dark red medicine........a wonderful way to relax and enjoy another BEAUTIFUL DAY!!!! By dinner time.....I was STILL stuffed from the breakfast this morning.

This evening.....the sky is clear as a bell with thousands of stars visible......and as it always seems......

LIFE IS GREAT.....and I hope it is for all of you, also!

Sunday, February 25, 2007

1st Lady looking at........jewelry, of course!!

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Entrance to "Filly's"...the sign is serious!!!

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GREAT conversation, chicken, and 40 years of friendship!!!!

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Enjoying the great Arizona sunshine

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Day 54: Mesa Swap Meet Shopping........

Ahhh.......do you get a bit tired of me talking about this FANTASTIC weather out here??? Huh??? I BET YOU DO!!!!! I'm damn sure I would if I was sitting somewhere right now reading this and the cold, wet winds were blowing against the windows and the crunch of ice and snow could be heard by the cars slipping down the street. SORRRRYYYYY!! But...it has been another incredibly gorgeous day......and we love them!!!! (try to visualize the bright blue sky above the browns and beiges of the desert, the bluish/purple craggy mountains in the distance, with the temps in the low 70's and little, if any, wind)

After a couple of cups of Fr Roast coffee, we jumped into the truck, went around the corner, and picked up Mac and Gail for our trip up to Mesa and the HUGE Swap Meet which is only open Friday thru Sunday. It is difficult to describe how LARGE this place is........acres of parking for the hundreds and hundreds of vehicles, and four long, long shed like structures filled on both sides of the walking aisle with 1600 stalls and booths selling everything from dried mangoes and soy nuts to huge southwestern items that would necessitate a mansion to house.

So, you ask.....what did we buy???? I bought a new wallet......a good buy for only $6.00, a knife sharpner, and I believe we will return next weekend to purchase an area rug for TheHowserHouse den. We found the one we wanted but we thought it would be toooooo wide to fit between the heating vents on the floor. Soooo, we decided to return and re-measure it one more time. I really do believe that it will work.....it will only hang over each vent about 1/2"....which leaves PLENTY of room for the heat to enter the room without causing any damage to the furnace. We also purchased four drink coasters of a sandstone and southwestern design that do not jump up and hit you in the face.......very monochromatic like the desert we see each day. Can't you tell that we are the "last of the big spenders"???

After about three hours at this most interesting place to shop, we were hungry!!! And....so after several cell phone calls to get the correct driving instructions from friends back down in Casa Grande, we found "Filly's"......a large western watering hole that serves wonderful chicken!!! Well....when we arrived all parking spaces were filled, the extra lot was filled, and the street was lined on both sides by cars and pickups. Loud country-western music was blaring loudly from the rear of the building where a couple of hundred people were sitting at long tables, eating, having some cold beer, and dancing to live music. Among these people were many in western dress including chaps.....and everyone having a great time under the tall and very, very old saguaro cacti. A bit farther back were many horses tethered to a rail........standing there patiently as their riders enjoyed the bright sun and the cool long necks and doing the country two-step.

As there was no place to sit, we entered from the front of the cafe/bar and sat close to the back entrance so we could watch the crowd and enjoy the music. The food was really good, the Corona that I consumed quickly was cold and thirst-quenching.....and we enjoyed an hour on a Sunday afternoon in an Arizona watering hole.

Returning to Sunscape RV Park and TheHowserHouse........we carried all of our purchased inside.....all three items. And.....now as I write this I am being constantly interrupted as my attention turns to the Oscar presentations. This is a great show........soooo different than many, many of these shows. LOVE the shadow figures as they roll out behind the screen and form various shapes and figures..........soooooo creative!!!!!!!!! IF you didn't see this.......well, that is toooo bad......it is super!

It has been another great day.......relaxing but filled with sights, aromas, and sounds that make Life soooo enjoyable......and because of all of these things.....

LIFE IS GREAT.....and I hope it is for all of you, also!!!!!

Saturday, February 24, 2007

1st Lady on a ride in the desert.....beautiful mts. in the background!

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"King Ken" telling a tall tale......

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All eyes/ears on the story being told....haha!

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The fire feels really GREAT!!

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