Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Weekend in Corpus Christi

Saturday we drove to Kingsville to visit the King Ranch.  We have driven through this area every year for 7 years and vowed each time to stop "next time."  Well this year we did.

The King Ranch was founded on two Spanish land grants in the area of the Wild Horse Desert by Richard King.  He and his wife had 5 children but only the youngest, Alice, produced grandchildren, the Kleburg family.  These descendents are instrumental in running the ranch today.  The huge family home is maintained for the sole purpose of the family while visiting either for business or pleasure.

Their greatest claim to fame is the breeding and establishment of the Santa Gertrudis line of beef cattle, far superior to the Texas longhorn.  The ranch was initially called Santa Gertrudis after the creek by that name.  It was the first fresh water Richard King found after leaving Brownsville, which today is a 3 hour drive.

Today the ranch is over 850,000 acres including 75,000 acres in Bellglade FL where they grow citrus, milo (a feed grain) and sod.  They also breed and train cutting horses and have had one Triple Crown Winner in Assault in 1946.

An artesian well was discovered on the ranch in 1899 and was instrumental in its growth.  A bronze sculpture in the Visitor's Center depicts this event.

We then went to the museum which contained lots of photographs of the family and life on the ranch.  This is a Buick Eight made into a hunting car.  I am standing beside a horse blanket woven on the ranch from wool of sheep also raised there.

Next we went to the Saddle Shop where I found this longhorn as part of the decorative display.

No one was working on the handmade saddles but I did take a few photos of the work area.

The disappointing thing was that virtually every item in the shop outside of the saddles,  though marked with the "Running W" brand was made in China.  Needless to say, I didn't buy anything.

Saturday, December 28, 2013

Where Is The Sun?

Where is Al Gore and his global warming when you need him?  I have been in jeans and sweat shirts all of December!  It's enough to make me consider moving back to Florida.

Tom and Eileen arrived safely and Sunday night we went to dinner with them, Gerre and Barry before taking in the local light shows.  We had lots to see but we had to sit in the car and listen to the music over the radio when it got too cold to stand outside.

Monday our visitors did some visiting of their own with long time friends who live in the area.  That gave me a chance to continue preparing for the holiday festivities.  On Christmas Eve we went to church at 4:00.  Despite Mass in the church and the gym, it was SRO but we were able to find seats in the front rows.  At the theater, people pay higher prices for these seats but they remain empty until the end at church.  Their loss, our gain.

We opened some presents afterwards, looked at some more lights and then we all met Gerre and Barry for dinner at Fleming's.  The food was excellent but it is very noisy for a nice restaurant.  I think I prefer Perry's for better ambience.

I was up at 5:30 on Christmas Day preparing dinner and mentally getting ready for our imminent departure.  Two of our guests took ill so there were 10 of us for dinner.  Talk about food!  I am not sure where it all came from.  There was shrimp, stuffed mushrooms, cheese plate, fruit, sausage and crackers as appetizers.  Then pork, rice, sweet potatoes, green beans, cauliflower, baked apples and corn casserole for our meal.  We polished that off with pecan and pumpkin pie, cookies and candy.  We are still eating leftovers!  It was an enjoyable day and I was happy to share it with my friends.

The next day was crunch time.  I laundered the linens from the tables, put away the Christmas decorations, gathered up the last minute personal items for the RV, rechecked that I had the info I would need while gone and freshened Chris's room in anticipation of his arrival.  Meanwhile Ted and Tom were moving the trailer to the campground where Tom and Eileen were staying.  Once we got situated, Tommy, Susan, Warren, Judy, Rita and Jim all came over to see our new digs.  It was a ready made party and I was pushing leftovers!  When that didn't work we ate some for dinner.

The next morning we pulled out and drove through downtown Houston and headed SW arriving in Corpus Christi mid afternoon.  It is still cold!  Our only stop was at Buccee's for a pit stop and some coffee.  We settled in, sliced the pork thin, added BBQ sauce, cole slaw and chips for one more go at the leftovers.

Today we are driving to Kingsville to tour the King Ranch.  If the sun comes out tomorrow we hope to visit Aransass Pass, Rockport and Mustang Island.  Monday we head to Mission where it is FINALLY supposed to be sunny and in the 70s,  let's hope they are right.

Your success and happiness lies in you. Resolve to keep happy, and your joy and you shall form an invincible host against difficulties.   ~ Helen Keller

Thursday, December 19, 2013

The Parties Are Over

We have been making runs to the trailer as often as we can to get the rest of the things put away. Next  comes the loading of our personal things we will use over the next 2.5 months.  We are getting close to being done.

Saturday night we played Shanghai at Sherida and John's.  Their house is decorated from floor to ceiling in every room!  It all looks lovely and I admire people who are wiling to take the time and make the effort to do this.  After all, I did put a wreath on my door!  She had an entire island of hearty appetizers and sweets.  Ted won at his table with the men and I won at mine with the ladies.  They are going to stop asking us to sub if we keep winning.

Monday was our bunco Christmas luncheon.  Mary's tables were set so beautifully and the food was outstanding.  We had our Christmas gift exchange which is always a lot of fun.  Another thing we do is donate food to the local food pantry.  We filled the entire back of my Expedition with food and Ted drove it to church the next day.

Tuesday was the big push to get most of the stuff back into the trailer.  It is unbelievable all that we keep in there on a regular basis.  I don't know how long it would have taken us in Chanute if we did it all at once.  At least we are getting things put away neatly and with a degree of organization.

Carol and Terry invited us to dinner at the country club with John and Irene on Wednesday night.  They were having their big holiday buffet and it was the only time we had to spend together for the holidays. We saw several other friends and it was an enjoyable evening.

Tonight was our neighborhood get together and we are delghted with Wanda's progress with her chemo.  She looked and felt fantastic.  What a wonderful answer to our prayers.  I laughed until I cried when we talked about forgetting the most basic words.  It seems we all have had incidents and one was funnier than the other.

Eileen and Tom will start their trip to here tomorrow.  We expect them to arrive on Sunday.  I will be busy getting ready for their arrival, finishing up the trailer packing, a visit to the lighted musical house, church and Christmas Eve dinner at Fleming's followed by a Christmas dinner for a dozen people here at our house.

That leaves me one day to tie up loose ends and put the wreath away.  Chris doesn't want to look at the few things sitting out until March and I don't want to put Christmas decorations away just when I am digging around for my St. Pat leprauchan or the Easter Bunny!

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Our (Un)Excellent Adventure

Last Wednesday I attended our Forum Holiday Party.  It was held close to home this year which made it even nicer for me.  Afterwards, I separated all the gifts donated into piles of "one for you, one for me" until we had two equal (as best we could) piles to be loaded into vans to be taken to two local charities.

The next morning I worked at the Nursing Home Christmas party and afterwards intended to take the gifts from the night before to one of the proper places.  Judy was taking the others.  While Sandra and I were blowing up balloons, she said she would just take them since they were all in her SUV and she lives down that way and I don't.  It made sense, so I agreed.

Our Merry Melodies sang lots of Christmas Carols to entertain the folks.  It is so interesting to watch those residents that do not communicate normally mouth the words to the songs.  I had lots of fun with one lady who took great pride in singing along with me showing me that she remembered all the words.  When I looked up from bending over her wheelchair I noticed everyone standing against the walls and I was the only one standing among the residents during the performance.  One of our singers came over afterwards and thanked me for singing along.  Good thing she couldn't really hear me!

We intended to head to Chanute, KS on Saturday but the weather was really bad with the ice storm so we waited until Sunday.  Well the weather was OK by then but what was on the ground north of Dallas wasn't.  I have my doubts that there is a snow plow in NE Texas!  The road from Richardson to Sherman was all ice and overpasses were the worst.  We saw tractor trailers off the road, a Greyhound bus and numerous cars scattered hither and yon.  It took us two hours to go 7 miles at one point.  Ted did a fantastic job of driving ... considering he was pulling our RV!

We reached Durant OK and found the casino campground covered in about 3 inches of ice.  We sort of slid into our spot.  Ted hooked up the electric, fired up the propane furnace and we ate our lunch leftovers for dinner.  We were on our way to pick up our new 2014 Mobile Suites 5th wheel and had emptied the old trailer to minimize time switching things out.  This was supposed to be a quick trip up and back!  So we found ourselves stuck with no extra blankets, no space heater if the propane ran out and only some canned food.  We were afraid to unhook for fear of not being able to back up to hook up to leave.

The campground between our spot and the office.

We knew we were not going anywhere on Monday so we thought we would call the casino shuttle and go to eat at the casino.  Wrong!  The shuttles were not running.  Lucky for us the manager of the KOA campground took us in his SUV to the casino, came back to pick us up and even took us to the Valero to pick up a few things to tide us over.  Our other problem was we had no water because the hose would freeze and Ted had winterized our tanks.  I was unable to negotiate the ice so Ted had to keep walking me to the office to the bathroom!  Fun! 

Tuesday Ted spread about 100 lbs. of de-icer in the path we needed to leave the campground.  Major roads were cleared but getting to them could have been tricky.  When we tried to leave, the wheels just spun!  So he put de-icer around our tires and we were able to get a running start and didn't stop until we were on the cleared road.

The trip into Kansas was uneventful and we were able to do the paperwork and pay for our purchase in just a few minutes.  Then we spent about two hours going over the unit and moving some things we had with us.

We chose to spend the night in a motel and the next morning spent three hours finishing up learning the ins and outs of the trailer, moved our dishes and were on our way.  We spent Wednesday night back in Durant and the ice was gone!  I did write KOA praising their manager for going Above and Beyond for us.

Here are some photos of the inside.  The refrigerator blows my mind.  It is bigger and fancier than mine at home!  The improvements are Independent suspension, body paint, bigger TV that stows behind the fireplace and raises up to watch, a way fancier kitchen, beautiful storage in the bedroom.  So far we are really pleased.

On the right is a fireplace you can't see and the space above is where the 46 inch TV comes up.

Behind those mirrored doors is a cedar lined walk in closet.

We arrived home mid-afternoon and parked the RV at the storage facility.  It is so dirty on the outside!  We are busy this next week but when Tom and Eileen arrive we will join them at the campground where Ted will wash it and I will put away the rest of our things that are sitting in a bedroom and the garage right now.

Thank you, Santa!  And praise to our Savior for the blessings he has bestowed on us.  

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Just Coasting 'Til Christmas

We had a lovely Thanksgiving at Irene and John's.  John's son and his family were there as well as another couple, Wayne and Pam, that we are friends with.  The 11 of us enjoyed a terrific meal and then the adults played cards.  Ted was with three women, I was with three men!  Not sure how that happened.  Anyway, I had terrific cards, got a Shanghai on the last hand and won with just 8 points for the entire set.

We stopped at Ulta on the way home and bought the sale items.  It was a long wait to check out but parking and crowds were no problem.

We joined Sherida, John, Gerre and Barry for dinner prior to seeing the play It's A Wonderful Life on Friday evening.  We learned this classic did not become popular as a holiday movie until the early 70s.  We all thought it was an instant Christmas hit.  Not so.

Our weather has improved and we are back in the 70s but another storm is heading this way and cold temps and wintry mix north of us is predicted for the weekend.  Then things warm up again.  Crazy weather!

I did my minimal decorating- sideboard in the breakfast area, front porch and my Texas Christmas tree.  That's it folks!  Chris will be back in residence as we head out 12/27 and putting decorations away before I go just isn't on my radar!  The stable was made circa 1930 by my grandfather out of a wooden Werk's Tag Soap box.  The tree was a departing gift from my best friend when we left Florida for Texas.  

Ted headed back to Dallas and I finished up packing the boxes that need to be shipped.  I need one more box and thought I could use the one I was expecting from UPS yesterday, but it never arrived.  Their records indicate it was delivered just before 7:00 last night but we were both home, the doorbell did not ring and there is no box!  I sent an email to Customer Service so we will see what today brings. 

I did work the Senior's Christmas luncheon yesterday.  About 200 were in attendance.  I always see our old friend Joanne who attends.  She and her husband were camping friends until he had a stroke.  She is now walking with a cane.  They played bingo, had lunch and were entertained by a singer.  He had a thick Cajun accent and a bad sound system which made hearing difficult.  He was having a hard time getting the audience to sing along because they couldn't understand him.  We all decided to form a chorus line to sing and dance to help him out which the audience enjoyed very much.  I never knew I could follow so many impromptu dance steps!  What a fun time we all had.  

I brought home a dozen tablecloths that are all laundered and on hangers ready to go back already.  Tonight is our holiday party and I will hand off the tablecloths to Linda so they have them for next time.  After the party I will load up half the donated toys for delivery tomorrow to the Assistance Ministries.  Sandy and I are both working at the nursing home in the morning and will leave from there to deliver the toys.  

By Friday I will be ready to put my feet up.  I am just hoping that box shows up and I can use it to mail that one last gift box!

Wednesday, November 27, 2013


Nothing much to report here.  Ted went to Dallas last week on business and I worked at a huge funeral luncheon at church.  I did my Christmas shopping, some at the mall and some on the computer, and as soon as two packages arrive I can pack it all up and send it off and I'm done!   I made our Christmas cards using amazingmail.com and they will mail them out in about two weeks.  Decorations will be minimal.  Only Tom and Eileen will be here and she is on the same page with me on decorating.

It turned very cold and rainy for several days and I just stayed home doing laundry and stuff.  I don't think I left the house for three straight days at one point.  That may be a record.  Today dawned with blue sky and sunshine but in the 30s!  Enough is enough.  We are due to get our 70s back by next week thank goodness.

I am making a pumpkin pie and sweet potatoes to take to Irene's tomorrow.  We are playing cards after dinner and we may try to get into Ulta after 8 pm for some hair care products on sale.  I won't fight crowds so if it is too busy, I will just skip it.

I have a busy schedule next week and Ted has to return to Dallas.  Hopefully, we will have a more exciting post next time.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013


I was trying to make one post using photos from the I-Pad and the camera and it wouldn't let me, i.e., I don't know how!  So here is the rest of the story.

Sunday Ted and I went to our old parish for early Mass.  Kelly said the girls could go to evening Mass when they got home.  We were delighted to see our old next door neighbors, a family from the next street, the church secretary, the education director and the past president of St. Ann's Council of Catholic Women.  Lots of hugs going around.  It was nice to be welcomed back.

The girls were up getting ready and packing up when we got back.  Their two day whirlwind trip to Florida was coming to a close.  We met the rest at Spice Restaurant on Lake Eola in downtown Orlando for brunch.  The weather was perfect and we sat outside in beautiful foliage surroundings watching the swan boats on the lake.  

There was an unusual visitor at the outdoor tables.  A kangaroo!  We thought maybe it was a wallaby but the owner said no.

Then it was off to the airport for Sheetal, Cassie and Ally.  Kara and Bill returned to Disney and after the airport run we headed to Larry's to fix dinner for and meet the best man and his wife.  Cooking in a bachelor's kitchen is not fun.  Two oven mitts but no other potholders, no baking dishes, no matching dishes, etc.  We made do and ended up with a pretty good dinner and a nice visit.  I made a list of kitchen items Kristin needs to add to her registry!  Her kitchen is only slightly better equipped than his.  

Larry's house is beautiful with 4 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms and a pool.  Kristin will have no problem making this her home because she will be able to use most of her decorative items since there aren't many.  He does have a signed and numbered Andy Warhol print that caught Ted's eye right away.

I was exhausted by the time we got home and wasn't up for long.  Kristin came back home with the hair dryer but she doesn't have a curling iron so I decided to get my hair done as soon as I could get an appointment.

Monday we went to lunch at the Swamp House Grill on the St. John's River then decided to ride through the campground.  It has always been too tight for us to use but lo and behold they had used part of their storage area to put in a half dozen super sites that we will fit into.  They are not wide side to side but we would have a concrete patio surrounded by some low growing greenery.  We booked a spot for February and cancelled the one we had in Orange City.  We had stopped by to see that and it is all dirt, no asphalt or gravel.  We are just down the road from Kristin now.  We will have lots to do when we return in getting her moved and the house ready for sale.

Tuesday was a lazy day as we prepared to leave.  I had my hair done first thing by my old hairdresser.  Kristin was at work and we eventually let ourselves out and headed to the airport.  It was an easy flight home and I was glad to be back.  We are so used to staying in our RV that being away without it produces what I believe most others experience all the time while traveling.  People ask us if we are glad to be home but a trip in the RV with our home with us doesn't produce that sentiment.  It is hard to explain.

So now we move on to the holidays!

To be grateful is to recognize the love of God in everything He has given us...and He has given us everything. Every breath we draw is a gift of His love, every moment of existence is a grace, for it brings with it immense graces from Him.

 Thomas Merton quotes  

Bob Jackson Show and Heading Home

After the shower on Saturday, we all went down to Disney to the Port Orleans Resort.  There are two sides, French Quarter and Riverside, but we were headed to the Roost River Lounge in the Riverside portion.  Bob Jackson has two shows and we wanted to get a good location for his 8:30 show.  We took three tables in the front and then had a drink.  Some went to the food court and brought their purchases back, others ordered from the somewhat limited appetizer menu in the lounge.  I was not hungry and just had my one glass of Riesling.

A bit before the show Bob came out to meet his audience.  He picked up on our two engaged couples Larry & Kristin and Bill & Kara, but somewhere along the way they became Mike and Tara!  He remembered Ted and "the two girls from Michigan" Cassie and Ally.

His show is ragtime piano playing and audience participation.  He would invite people up and then call for Larry & Kristin, Mike & Tara, the girls from Michigan to come up to join him.  I don't think he did one participation portion without inviting them all up.  Poor Larry even got a part where he had to run up and down in front of the bar for some reason, holding his fingers around his eyes like binoculars.

The show was an hour and a half and the most fun we have had in a long time.  We all joined in doing the hokey pokey, conga line, YMCA, Rockettes kicking line up, etc.  Bob is one heck of an entertainer.

I would recommend this show to anyone visiting Disney.  It is family friendly and fun for young and old alike.  There is no cover charge and prices are not bad.  My glass of Riesling was $9, in line with the standard Disney upcharge for what you get.  But it was worth it!!!

Bob with Ally looking on.

Bill, Kara and Cassie turning themselves around during the Hokey Pokey.

Larry getting ready for his "binocular run."

Kristin, Cassie, Kara, Ally, Me, Sheetal getting ready to do the famous Rockette kick.  Right!

Ted, Larry and Bill doing YMCA

Monday, November 18, 2013

Spectacular Saturday

Friday we picked up Cassie, Ally and Sheetal at the airport before joining Larry's aunt and sister for dinner.  The girls stayed with us while Kristin and Sheetal stayed at Larry's.   Saturday was busy getting everyone ready, all the gifts and prizes to Aunt Maureen's and helping get things set up for the shower. Eileen drove us and Tom rode with Ted to pick up the catering a bit later so it would arrive for lunch.  Kara and Bill flew in that morning and met up with us.   The men sat on the patio watching football while the shower went on.

Attendees minus Laura and Gisele who had to leave early.

The Bride and Maid of Honor

The Bride and Groom

Kara, Kristin, me, Cassie and Ally

Lovely home on a beautiful lake.  

Paintings by Larry's aunt

It was a huge success and I was so blessed to have two sisters, two daughters and two granddaughters in attendance.  Larry's family could not have been more  gracious and we are so grateful to them for opening their home.

But we had all of Saturday evening to continue celebrating.  We went to River Roost Lounge at Port Orleans Riverside at Disney to see the Bob Jackson show.  I need to download some photos so I will leave you with our group photo with Bob and you'll have to wait to see the rest next time! 

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Busy, busy Week!

We had a terrific flight on Southwest to Orlando.  This airline knows how to do it right.  No charge for the first bag so no one is dragging the kitchen sink aboard.  Orderly boarding in increments.  Up, up and away on time.  We had a real salesman at Hertz who woukd have doubled our costs if we would have let him.  Did we want to rent a Sun Pass, GPS, car seat, pay for gas, take out insurance, etc.  Nope!  We are good to go.  It was 8:00 by the time we made it to Kristin's.

Wednesday we had our laundry list of errands.  I needed to buy prizes for the shower games and lots of wrapping paper.  I had 10 gifts that had been delivered to Larry's to wrap and then 8 prizes to wrap once they were purchased.  Meanwhile we were pulling anchors out of the walls and patching them where Kristin has moved things from here to Larry's.  For dinner we met up at Terra Mia for dinner.  The shower was being catered from there so they wanted us to try it.  We were pretty tired when we got home but we watched the DVR of Survivor before hitting the hay.

We were out of the house by 8:15 Thursday to deliver the cats to the groomer.  They are long hair Persians so cat hair is a nightmare.  They also had been hacking the proverbial hairballs so they were going to get the lion cut.  

We proceeded to Larry's and took off with another list of errands.  We dropped off fake pearls for the waist decoration on the wedding dress cupcakes for the shower.  I had emailed a photo to Larry who took it to Publix to see if they could duplicate it.  They asked for a decoration for the waist.  I found an  old  Mardi Gras necklace, cut it apart and tied the ends to keep the pearls on.  After a washing, they were ready to go.  They finished it off with shimmery sprinkles and it was a hit!

Next we had to deliver witness statements, baptismal certificates and pre-Cana documentation to St. Stephen's Church.  That was a quick visit but productive in that our questions concerning what they need to do regarding readings, songs, participants, etc. were answered.  They seem to be on course with all of that.

Next up was tuxedo measurement time for Ted and Larry.  It was fun sitting back and watching men pick and  choose while getting measured.  Usually men are sitting watching women model what they are trying on.  

We stopped at Terra Mia's larger restaurant to order the food for Saturday.  They told us we would have to pick it up at the one we ate at because they don't open until 5:00 on Saturdays.  Kristin thought only the larger one did the catering.  Whatever!  They called and made all arrangements for us.

Finally we went to pick up the cats.  Oh my!  We didn't know if we should laugh or cry.   Mango was growling at Maisy because he didn't recognize her.  Good thing he doesn't have a mirror!

I must say that the cat hair flying around has diminished considerably.

We ate dinner at the restaurant where the rehearsal dinner will be.  It is a sports bar in downtown Orlando on a trendy street near the Church Street Station area frequented by the younger set.  With 60 expected, we chose to keep it casual and fun.  The food was really good so we thought so far, so good.

Friday was the big day for food tasting at The Citrus Club.  It is as lovely as we remembered it and the service was impeccable.  We chose 5 appetizers to try and settled on 3.  We had 2 salads and chose our favorite.  We each had a different entrĂ©e and chose 2 of  those plus one that was not available that day.  We were 3 for 3 on restaurant choices. 

We went to Larry's and eventually met up with his Aunt Irene and sister Maureen.  They are such a wonderful family.   They think the world of Larry and are quite taken with Kristin.  They both are bringing lots of support to this marriage.  Saturday was the big day and I will share that next time.

To be fully seen by somebody, then, and be loved anyhow - this is a human offering that can border on the miraculous.

~ Elizabeth Gilbert

Friday, November 8, 2013

Free Time

We came home Monday after an enjoyable and productive week out in the RV.  We love spending time with Tommy and Susan.  It has been since The National in Nashville in 2012 that we have been with the Dallas folks.  And to add to that, the rig was washed and waxed, the rugs were cleaned and my cabinets were rearranged so hopefully no more broken dishes.  We are ready to roll.

We had planned a trip to Florida awhile back and since I didn't know if we were traveling in the RV which takes the most time, by car which takes a bit less or flying, I kept this past week open.  That gave me Monday and Tuesday to put away what we brought home, to go through the mail and do "paperwork."  Wednesday I did laundry all day.  I swear somone puts their clothes in with ours.  Two people shouldn't produce so much dirty laundry.  I think it's the same guy who alters our clothes while they are hanging in the closet and makes mine smaller and Ted's bigger!

Today I worked at the Children's Festival here where we live.  Over 3000 children are bussed in to see the programs and visit the exhibits.  It is like herding cats.  The teachers and chaporones do a great job of keeping their classes together but we had 5 buses from one school for a total of a couple hundred kids we were responsible for.  Each school is different and volunteers are assigned accordingly.  We lucked out in that our children remained in the same spot for all activities including lunch.  This may have been because we had an additional mini busload of special needs children including wheelchairs.

Once we got them settled, handled bathroom and first aid directions, determined where to send the special needs for diaper changes, and brought chairs into the handicapped area for those teachers, we were able to sit back and enjoy the shows.  At lunch we distributed trash bags and gathered that up.  After the final show one of our group took the special needs to their bus while the remaining three of us kept almost 300 people together, out of their seats and funneled to the same aisle, down the steps, across the plaza, out the gate and around the corner to the 5 waiting buses.  All the time walking next to another school and keeping them in their correct line.  I was doing the middle and did a lot of back and forth along the line to accomplish tnis.

My last two duties were to hold up a bus so a special needs bus could get into the correct school district bus line and take a jacket back to first aid that we got for a Down's Syndrome little girl who was cold.  I have to mention the patience and dedication of the special ed teachers as well as all of the teachers.  I know I would have been a terrible teacher.  I just don't have the patience.  They seem to take all that exuberance and noise in stride.  God bless them.

We have turned one of our guest rooms over to Chris.  He now has the closet and chest of drawers in one guest room so he can move in and out easily.  He even has a hamper.  We have a very aggressive travel schedule in 2014 and we all agreed this will work best. 

Hair, nails, church, cards, more cards and packing will occupy my weekend and Monday.   We fly to Orlando on Tuesday for Kristin's wedding shower.  We also are tasting rehearsal and reception food, meeting Larry's family, getting Ted's tux, getting my dress hemmed, etc.  My two granddaughters are flying in and another daughter is coming also.  We are taking them all to a show at Port Orleans at Disney on Saturday night.  They are only there for two days so we want to see they have a good time in that short window.

Next time I will have some photos from Florida!

Saturday, November 2, 2013

A Week's Vacation

We knew we would be coming and going this week but that didn't detract from our week with Tommy and Susan and the Dallas HitchHikers.  The ladies were attending classes at the quilt show and Susan was working so there was plenty of time to do whatever. 

I made chicken soup for dinner on Wednesday while Ted was gone and we shared it with Tommy and Susan.  We ate inside because everything outside was wet from the rain.  Ted was tired after getting up two days in a row at 5 am so it was an early night.

Thursday was the start of the rally and we had breakfast in the rally room at 9.  It was my day to play Shanghai so at noon I headed there.  And I won, coming in second.  I hurried home because there was a potluck at 5:30 and I had sweet potatoes to bake.  There is always too much food but it is always really good.  The gals taught me a new card game, 2500.  Now I will have to teach the others I play cards with.  I don't know how I did that first time playing but I know I didn't win.

Friday we attended church after spending 45 minutes in traffic for a 10 minute trip.  Apparently there was a wreck at the interchange we had to go through.  Ted made a pulled pork shoulder and we ate lunch outside with Tommy and Susan.  At 5:30 we had to meet the other group at the Mexican restaurant.  I wasn't the least bit hungry but they sent one of the fellows to tell us they had arrived from downtown and to come over, so we went.  I ordered a half quesadilla from the appetizer menu and managed to eat that.  We gathered in the rally room afterwards until it started to rain again when everyone headed home.  

Today we were invited to lunch at Tommy and Susan's for taco soup.  Our friends Dee and Ricky came by and ate with us but couldn't stay long.  Then Tommy decided we needed to go look at motorhomes!  They certainly are beautiful but just don't have the warmth and coziness of our 5th wheel.  I think we have one more unit in our future but I'm not sure just when or what it will be.

We tried to see Rita and Jim's new Mobile Suites but they were out and about somewhere.  So we stopped at Judy and Warren's to talk to them about the Mobile Suites they are picking up in February.  HitchHiker is out of production and Mobile Suites or Excel top our list.  But like I said, we have no timetable for replacing our 2008 HitchHiker.

We returned and watched college football until 6 pm when we met the group again at a local historic restaurant.  We came back and played cards. This time I came in second.  Not bad for only my second time.

We went to church at 7:30 Sunday morning since our bodies believed it was 8:30.  Fall back is a lot easier than spring forward.  We decided to stay one extra day because Ted had the RV washed and waxed by a company.  Also there was a Welcome Back Winter Texans party in the afternoon.  Once the washing was underway, Ted left to shoot and I called the kids and then took a nap.

We attended the gathering to welcome back all those who call this place home during the winter.  Of course we are friends with many of them.  We had an opportunity to talk with Gwen the owner.  It seems she was given the impression we were going to buy a motorhome!   That Tommy!!

We did get to see Rita and Jim's rig.  We toured the Mobile Suites factory in Howe, IN in 2009.  Ted was impressed with the fit and finish at that time.  I guess you'll know when we know if we are going to bite the bullet one more time.  I at least wrote the check for this one without getting a sick migraine!

We head home tomorrow.  I think the RV will stay put until December but then who knows what could come up?

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

The Green, Green Grass of Home

We have had an inordinate amount of rain since our return and it is as green as springtime around here.  I usually stop my grass cutting every week around the first of November but I may need to continue it a bit longer.  We have it cut every other week over the winter.  The grass isn't really growing but it can get messy with pine needles and such so it is nice to get the yard tidied up at least every other week.

Friday we decided to vote early and then ride to the campground to change our reservation to Monday from Wednesday.  Gwen and Melissa in the office were delighted to see us, and us them!  It has been awhile since we've camped here.  Afterwards we stopped by Tommy and Susan's site and ended up visiting so long we ate supper at Red Robin because it was too late to fire up the grill at home.

When I checked my email that evening I had an email from the county court clerk saying my service was not needed and thanked me!  Now it was easier to plan for our week.

Saturday we went to church at 5:00 and then came home to put on our costumes for the party we were invited to.  We were going to be Amish farmers but I never found suspenders so we opted to go as Hawaiian tourists.  Ted wore yellow shorts with a yellow and blue Aloha shirt with a lei.  I wore a white caftan with pink and lavender flowers, a lei and a flower in my hair.  It wasn't too original since Dick and Jeanette had on their Aloha outfits too!

Here are some of the ladies and gents.

We had Cleopatra.

And Davy Crockett.

The winners of the costume contest.



We had a fun time with our friends.  Jeanette's kids came as Scooby Doo and the teens who ran with him as well as a butterfly and a tiger.  Great costumes.

Sunday I went to the grocery to prepare for our week out in the RV and Ted went shooting.  On Monday we split up and he went for fuel and to hook up while I drove my car over to the campground.  We arrived together (great timing!) and got set up.  Tommy was there to meet us as well as Harley from the Dallas group.

We visited some, had dinner and watched Dancing With The Stars later that evening.  Tuesday Ted had to go to the Chronicle and I went to Junior Forum to help prepare the Holiday Party invitations for bulk mailing.  I arrived back way before Ted and visited with Tommy, Nick and Fallon for the afternoon.

When Ted returned he said he had to get dressed, turned around and went back down to dinner with his fellow employees who were in town.  And he had to go back down this morning and has just returned at 4:30.  He is not used to putting in such long two day periods.

Today I cleaned the carpets and rearranged my cabinets to avoid the disaster we had when all my corning ware flew out and broke.  I made chicken soup and we are having Tommy and Susan over for dinner after eveyrone has their nap.

Tomorrow Ted is home and we have a rally breakfast at 9:00, I play cards at noon and then a potluck at 5:30.  I hope I get back in time to get my sweet potatoes peeled and baked in time for dinner!  Our week is going by quickly.

Happy Halloween everyone!