Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Taking a break ...

I think I'll take a summer break here.  Wendell is not feeling well and my every thought has been with him and his well-being.  I can't seem to concentrate on anything else right now.  Perhaps I'll be more collected later in the summer.

But here's what I've been doing since I last wrote ...

As you might remember, I'm really hung up on Steve Meadows' pot head art.  We went back to his gallery in Palestine, IL recently and I came close to buying another one but settled for a necklace instead!  And lots of pictures to dream on.  Yeah, I know.  Not even close.  But the necklace does contains a message I'm trying to make my summer mantra -- "Let It Go".  My current favorite piece of jewelry!  But anyway, here's some pictures I took in his gallery ... 






We attended the Memorial Day services on the courthouse square in Spencer for the first time.  It was probably a pretty typical small-community service with short speeches, volleys of gunfire, wreath laying, etc.  They have this wonderful doughboy statue on the northwest corner of the square under the flag pole.  A highlight was a 99-year-old vet of WWII who was recognized.  Following the service there, everyone traveled the three blocks south to the river bridge and two wreaths were put into the White River in memory of those who were lost at sea during our country's wars.  It was a really great service.  After that we went to the cemetery where the wonderful old shelter there, made from geodes, is the center of the military burial area.  Just a good way to celebrate the true meaning of this holiday!  And so glad we went!!!



I have been hooking 'some' ... here's (below) the beginning of a rug that I hope to finish before winter!  (LOL!)  It will look MUCH better when I start getting background around these two big birds.  What I'm really feeling the most contented about is giving some rugs away.  I've really enjoyed seeing them go to family and friends who expressed an interest in what I do and I hope they will enjoy them for many years.  The one thing I'm still consistently working on the most is weaving!  Got the loom going again and I'll put some pictures on this fall when I have a run of woven rugs finished and knotted.  Also, so enjoying Jane S.'s "project kindness" sewing days.  I've sewn several little hospital gowns for surgery dolls and put the fringe on a few fleece throws; looking forward to seeing them off to a good cause!


Enjoyed our Jane's 50th Happy Birthday party couple weeks ago.  She's a real sweetie and you could tell how much she's loved in her community (Winchester) by how many friends, and family, turned out for this special day.  Wendell says she should run for office -- she knows everyone!  It was just a great day.



But, the porch is where I've been spending lots of my time.  And plan on being here as much as I can in the next few weeks.  Wish you were here with me!  Say a prayer for my Wendell.  God bless you and God willing I'll be back with you later in the summer ......

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

WAY too many showers ...

Keeping my feet up ......
We're flooded in here.  This is the longest we've been stranded at home, even longer than the June 2008 flood!  Freaky.  We were out to lunch, errands  and the library last Wednesday and drove through a 'little' water to do that.  That was the last time out.  Had to miss church Sunday -- bummer!

This was at the beginning of the flooding on our road; by Sunday you couldn't see the grass or the tops of the fence posts. So stunned when we drove down to look I didn't even take a picture! We thought it might have gone down but instead worse than this ...
Been busy though.  My house is the cleanest it's been for a long time.  And we've mowed the yard and got things whipped into shape outside, too -- mended fence, divided perennials, sprayed weeds, etc.  So it's not been all bad.  I've cleaned out drawers, polished furniture all over (not just the tops) and went through closets, starting Goodwill bags. 
I am getting low on meal ideas though and have only two possible dinner menus plans left!  Have plenty of main course items (meat) left, but I'm almost out of fruit and veggies; fresh is all gone as of yesterday and down to canned.  Not good!  Last night I took a half pound ground pork and half a package of tortellini and half a jar of marinara sauce, and made pasta and meat balls!  It was surprisingly good.  Used the last half package of frozen mixed veggies to go with.  Now all I have is a can of lima beans & some Chinese veggies!  On the plus side, I can make bread.  And I made a half gallon of espresso-Heath bar ice cream.  So we're good, really.  When you have ice cream & TP you have all you need to survive.  [But the bottom line is, in the future I'm keeping more staples on hand!]
Wendell had a special day April 29, receiving his Masonic 50 year award at his home lodge in Bluffton.   Adrian, Jeff & Jane were there.  It sure was an important event in his life and he so appreciated his family being with him.  I got to pin his gold award on his lapel!  Though it was raining mightily that day, it didn't dampen our enjoyment.
Wendell gets pinned!




I've been weaving this week.  We got the loom warped!  Actually, I don't think I could do the warping process by myself.  And I don't feel bad about that because Paul (my weaving mentor) says Marilyn has to help him, too.  I'm working on a t-shirt rug.  It should be very interesting; it's sort of lumpy and bumpy and bright!  I'll put some pictures on when I get some rugs complete, off the loom and knotted!
I finished a new quilt last fall and my friend Benjie quilted it while we were in AZ.  I got it bound this week, also.  (I told you I've been busy!)  Here's what it looks like, front and back.  I'm very happy with how it turned out.  Not my usual subdued colors for sure!  What do you think!?
Front ...
 
and back!
Well, gotta close and think about lunch!   But what do I have that I can prepare????  Got some boiled eggs, so I think it's going to be egg salad sandwiches on the last 3 slices of bread!  LOL! 

I'll close with these pictures from the yard.  Spring has sprung!


The first rose of summer ...
and the chives are blooming already!








Friday, April 21, 2017

April showers ...

It's been a while since I've written but it's been a busy time.  That's my excuse!  Got the flower beds cleaned and "preened".  Last week I got the yard d├ęcor (which I'm discarding more and more of each year) out of the garden shed and dispersed amongst the flower beds and the potting table.  Still have the big whirly-gig to put out yet.  That job will need some assistance from W.  He's mowed already of course; he got a new zero-turn mower.  I think it's the first new mower he's ever had; everything else has been purchased used.  He really likes his new mower!  (I don't think I'll learn how to drive this one ... LOL!)


As I was working that day, I saw this squiggly arrangement on the wall that's next to the basement door!  Yikes!  I hate snakes but this was sort of interesting ... the smaller one had his tail draped around the middle of the larger one.  I just let them alone; they weren't hurting me and obviously I wasn't bothering them.  HOWEVER, early this week W. whacked two smaller snakes which were hanging around on the front deck, way too close to our screened porch!  They don't need to be up there!  (I don't know what I'd do if he wasn't around to kill snakes, set mouse traps, and get spiders ...)




We've had some amazing sunsets here lately.  I'm sharing a couple.  I think there's something about sunsets that attract everyone, don't you?  Doesn't the Bible say something like, the skies proclaim the work of His hands?  I believe it!  But man-made things are awesome, too.  Earlier this week we were in Bloomfield for dinner and as we walked back to our car, we heard the train whistle blow.  I said, 'I'll bet I can get to the trestle before the train does!'  And I did. 
 
Here's a couple pictures I took.  We've been fortunate to see a few trains cross the trestle in the 20 years we've lived here and it never ceases to interest me!  (BTW ... they put out one of those 'little lending libraries' at the trestle overlook parking area and I found a neat old book on crafts!  Two birds ...)  And we met the nicest young couple there with their two little girls.  They came from Linton!  They've lived here all their lives and never saw a train go over the trestle so that was neat, sharing that with them.  Then, sadly, just as the train left the trestle this young couple came whirling in and they were very unhappy to have just missed it; they, too, had never seen a train cross this magnificent trestle!  All in all, it was a good day ...

 

We drove out to Goose Pond last week and saw rafts and rafts of pelicans (pictured below)!  When they fly you can see specks of black at the tips of their wings; beautiful in flight.  Also lots of ducks of several species, and plovers and sandpipers, as well as tons of red-wing black birds!  We saw the eagles nest that's on the Pleasantville Road but didn't see the eagles.  Hadn't been through Pleasantville recently and it was interesting to take note of their old high school gym, still standing and in use as a special-occasion rental facility.  It's a quiet little town; no businesses & just a few homes.


Well, I'll close with a photo of my favorite tree near the edge of the woods, taken from the deck just outside our front door.  Wish we had more dogwoods!  I love them.  Take care of yourself and enjoy this lovely spring weather!  And remember, these spring rains are good for the earth and good for us!
 

Sunday, March 12, 2017

Home again, home again, jiggety jig ...

     We're back.  Got home late Wednesday afternoon and by late Thursday we were unpacked, laundry caught up, house whipped back into shape, and feeling like "it's over (sniff, sniff)."
     But, I wanted to share some pictures I took on the way home.  Biggest thing for me was finally seeing the Grand Canyon.  That's been on my bucket list for years.  And we finally got there!  Along with some other beautiful spots on the way home.  About the Grand Canyon ... here's the words that describe how I felt while there:________,________, ________, & ________!!! Hey!  There are no words!  It was truly indescribable. 
     The day we were there snow was on the ground and we started out in long pants, winter coats, hats, gloves, etc.  It was mid-morning when we arrived.  By the time we left the park in late afternoon we were in our shirt sleeves.  All the time it was clear and sunny.  It was a BEAUTIFUL day!  And the cold did not keep the people away.  One of my FB friends said, you probably had the place to yourselves from the pictures with snow on the ground.  NOT!  There were plenty of people to go around! 
     But, anyway, here's some pictures from our trip home.  (Usually we take about 4 days/3 nights to go to AZ but this year we were out 8 days/7 nights.  So we experienced more than usual.)
My first view of the Grand Canyon!

Here we are at Mather Point.

That's the Colorado River you can see WAY down there!
     The Grand Canyon was our second day out, then the third day we went through Monument Valley and 4-Corners.  I've always wanted to go to 4-Corners and stand in 4 states at one time.  Let me just say that the 4-Corners Monument was disappointing to me because there were four rows of booths -- one in each state -- of Native American tourist crap there.  It was like putting slot machines in a cathedral.  That's how I felt about it.
Obviously Monument Valley was far more beautiful before the native people started putting shacks and trailers all over the place.  That's what the little dots of color are in this picture.  And they were everywhere, almost ruining the beauty of the place.  You had to get off the highway to see the rock formations free of civilization.  Over and over we'd say to each other "Too many people."

My favorite shot of Monument Valley ... there was virtually no traffic and I stood out on the highway for a long time, getting several shots.
Here's what 4-Corners looks like when you first come into the monument part of it.  The rows of booths along each quadrant are native Americans selling trinkets.

Here's Wendell standing in all 4 states at one time! UT, CO, NM, AZ!
Here's a couple pics I took In Utah ...

Here's a balancing rock just outside Mexican Hat, UT.  It's supposed to be the namesake of the town.
The Twin Rocks Trading Post was built up against the bluffs in ----- Bluff, UT!  Very interesting place to visit.
We saw some other interesting stuff.  Here's a few more pictures ...
Can you see those black spots in the center of this picture?  That's cattle, grazing on this very sharp slope.  That terraced area is overburden of a mine!  I thought I'd seen cattle in some out of the way places out there, but this was crazy.  And it was right in the middle of Miami, AZ!  (see the traffic light?)

A beautiful saguaro cactus in the Roosevelt Lake area of AZ.

The bridge over Lake Roosevelt, taken from the dam overlook.

These two pictures are taken at the NRA Whittington Center near Raton, NM.  What a place!  We just stumbled onto it; didn't plan on going.  But W. truly enjoyed it and we wish we had had more time to spend there -- they have a museum, reference library, meeting room, gift shop, shooting ranges, cabins, you name it.  All this on the old Santa Fe Trail.   
     After we left NM we decided to go east through Kansas instead of Oklahoma!  Big mistake!  Talk about the middle of no where!  Yikes!  Two days of nothingness.  (I hope no one reading this is from KS but I have to tell you, that is one big boring state!)  At least now I can say I've seen a lot of Kansas .....
     Then, of course, we finished the last two days as we usually do.  Stayed overnight in Springfield MO and went to Bass Pro the next day and spent the a.m. there, then took off for Sikeston, where we stayed overnight and had dinner at Lamberts, home of throwed rolls.  It was great.  But all good things must come to an end.


     Now, it's back to reality.  We had a great winter.  Sierra Vista was a great place to visit and there was lots to do.  We kept very busy and enjoyed ourselves immensely.  The question now is: Where to next winter?!
 

Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Last days, last looks ...

And ... time's up!  Today we're packing.  I did the last load of laundry and I've got the dishwasher running.

Last week was sort of trying.  Monday both Wendell & I had senior moments.  Not good.  Let's just say that that particular Monday was extremely Monday-ish!  Then on Tuesday night some low-life stole our entire TuffBox out of the bed of the truck.  (Of course we have $500 deductible so it's on us ...)  There was just a lot of miscellaneous stuff in there but my biggest disappointment was loosing two items I had just purchased in Tubac the week prior!  ARGH!  Wendell biggest loss was his tool box full of hand tools.  That will be greatly missed if we have some sort of mishap on the way home.  It was sort of funny filling out the police report; the officer wanted to know exactly what was in there and he was very thorough!  We came up with as much as we could off the top of our heads but of course now we're remembering stuff we failed to report.  Just not a good week.  We're putting that behind us but hoping that's not some sort of portend of things to come ... we have quite a drive ahead of us.

Thought I'd put some pictures on here of what we did the past week or so.  Then I might add some pictures of the interior of this lovely condo.  It's been a great place to stay!





These pictures were taken at Tubac ... that was a lovely day. It's a real "touristy" town but very interesting with the old Persidio, art galleries, shops and restaurants.
This was a lovely phenomenon we saw in the dessert. It wasn't quite a rainbow but all the colors of the rainbow were there in one spot.
Met my brother Don and his wife, Nancy, last week for lunch in Patagonia at The Velvet Elvis.  Really good place to eat, and here's a picture of the name sake ...


On the way home from Patagonia we went by this really neat wood corral ...
Just last Saturday we finally got over to Bisbee for their weekly farmer's market.  We sure wish we had checked it out earlier!  They have lots of tents in a great area and the music (group pictured here under a tree) was excellent.  We just may come back and stay in Bisbee next year ...


On the grounds of Ft. Huachuca they have regular "burns" where they burn the grasses and underbrush.  They did this one late last week.  We had wanted to go back through Garden Canyon but when we saw they were burning there we decided to not return.  It would have looked and smelled unpleasant ...  That's miles from us but looks like it's closer.

Well, that's all from AZ for this year.  Wish us luck on our journey home!