Wednesday, November 30, 2011
We were only moving from Albuquerque to Holbrook, Az today which is about 240 miles. The scenery on this drive is quite stunning, as long as you don't look at the buildings and the housing that folks live in out in this country.
There are still a lot of old ramshackle motels and gas stations that remain from the mother road era. Some of them are still used as housing for less fortunate folks and in many cases they are all boarded up and falling in on themselves.
But look at the buttes and bluffs and the desert, it is the actual backdrop for the animated scenes from the movie Cars. I expected to see a sign for the town of Radiator Springs, which is of course mythical. We stopped in the truck stop on the West side of Gallup.
The truck stop was quite busy as folks tend to fill up before entering Arizona, which has a few cents more gas tax. We filled and then slipped back to the back lot with the semi trucks that were parked while drivers caught up on their hours of rest.
It was 100 percent sunny but the wind was cold as it was barely 58 degrees. We left the door closed for our lunch, but the truck door window was open for some of the fresh air. We rested for about an hour before getting back on the road.
We arrived here at the KOA in Holbrook at 3 PM. I was all driven out, even though we had only actually traveled for about 4 hours. This KOA is a really basic campground with gravel everywhere. You can't tell where a campsite is or if it is a park road because there is no difference, all gravel! So get close to the power pedestal, and don't hang over onto your neighbors, and you are good.
The other RV park here is called "OK RV park", but we looked at it the last time we came here and it is anything but, OK.
It is forecast to be 22 degrees here tonight, so we did not hook up anything but the electric cord. We will take on water and dump in the morning. It feels really cold outside as I type this but I haven't had the nerve to look at the temp gauge.
The locals don't think it will be that cold from listening to the local news, and we hope they are correct, but also we hope this will be our last night of sub freezing temperatures. Its only 170 miles to Mesa tomorrow.......
Tuesday, November 29, 2011
So with hugs and hand shakes we were off, at the crack of 11:30. But we were headed West, and the best part of that is that in just 100 miles or so, you go into New Mexico, which is Mountain Time Zone!! So we get an hour back, which means we really left at 10:30.......well sort of like that anyway..
We are looking at bad weather toward the end of this week, and they have even mentioned SNOW! I 40 is really too far North for travel in the motorhome this time of year, so we have to get a move on to get South into the Phoenix valley.
As we drove West into New Mexico the elevation begins to climb rather rapidly. I have the Altitude as a selection on the GPS when we are going into the higher ground and watched as we climbed. At Santa Rosa, we stopped at a McDonalds and by then we were seeing 74 on our temperature gauges. We lunched with the door open which was pleasant.
As we climbed toward Clines' Corners, we lost that temperature rather quickly. It is over 7000 feet as you arrive there, and the temps were more like 51. We pressed on West for Albuquerque. You descend down into town as Albuquerque is on the Rio Grand river and my GPS read about 4900 while we were on the bridge.
Of course you immediately begin to climb again as you continue. We got off at the Flying J truck stop for some fuel. It is always a zoo, and today was no exception. If you stay on that frontage road and head West about 4 more miles you come to the American RV campground, which is where we landed as the sun began to drift over the horizon.
This is another of those concrete and asphalt cities that have not nearly enough space between you and your neighbor. But it is to be freezing again tonight so the small picnic table that is outside our door will remain vacant during our stay anyway. We are right along the frontage road of the interstate and the traffic on I 40 is roaring by so lets hope it dies down some before morning.........
After dark, we trekked back into Albuquerque to find the closest Wal Mart. This turned out to be a number of miles South of the interstate which was giving us some pause, thinking we were going to be lost, but in the end I never plugged in the GPS. I had brought it along thinking I might need it, but my manlyhood didn't allow for its use.
We are driving into some rain tomorrow which will become frozen on Thursday if we get bogged down. We hope to stay in Holbrook tomorrow night which has a forecast low of 22 degrees. That is never fun in these RVs...........
Monday, November 28, 2011
So as we pulled into the Oasis this afternoon, we noticed right off that there was a Heartland trailer with a golf cart on the back in the second row. So they are here again, but not at their site. We assume that they are visiting their daughter again, and perhaps may plan on pulling out tomorrow or the next day so we may not actually get to talk to them.
We are parked a couple of spots away, so unless they bolt out at dark thirty before we get around in the morning, perhaps we can wave hi before they leave.
Boy it was cold last night in Oklahoma City. The wind picked up and the temps went into the mid 30s. Not freezing but the wind took away the little warmth we had in the rig. We had both electric heaters running full tilt for most of the night. It was a sleep in your sweatshirt kind of a deal.
As we were leaving this morning at 10 AM it was still only 37 outside, and the hoses rolled up so stiff that it was hard to get them into compartments. The wind continued, and this time we were traveling West with the wind out of the Northwest. I went for an hour in 5th gear eating diesel fuel at about double the normal rate.
The sun did warm us up into the 50s as we were crossing Texas headed for Amarillo. But now as we head off into the evening darkness the temps are falling again rather quickly. However, tonight the wind is not as ferocious and the heater is keeping up better.
We could turn on the LP gas blower heaters, but neither of us like the noise that they make. I just looked on the weather forecast and we are slated to have 27 tonight so I had better go roll up that garden hose before bedtime.
We hope to make Albuquerque tomorrow..........
Sunday, November 27, 2011
So with that description, can you guess where here is? We are still several miles North of downtown Oklahoma City, and Twin Fountains is one of the nicer campgrounds that we will ever go to. It has concrete sites and blacktop roads. The main building is a log cabin that is clubhouse sized. It even has a pizza restaurant inside along with several big screen TVs.
I called ahead when we were still North of Wichita and asked if we needed a reservation, and was told no as they had lots of sites. When she asked how long we were, I explained that we were towing a trailer and had a car too. She said I needed her big site and told me not to worry.
It was about 5 PM when we pulled in, and to our surprise, we were given the long site on the East side of the pond that has the two fountains in it. Its winter, and the pond is red with Oklahoma muddy water, but the squirter things that spray up in the air are still running. The site is over 100 feet long.
This morning it was raining cats and dogs while we finished packing up the rig and Loyce put a lot of stuff into the CRV. This is new for us, as we have driven a Camry car in the past, which didn't haul nearly as much. As we left town, right on que, the rain seemed to go away.
We only stopped in Emporia for Wendy's in the truck stop and a few gallons of diesel, along with a few bathroom breaks at the toll road rest stops. It was windy, and we fought that all day long. It was to our side and behind us most of the time so it didn't drop fuel mileage much, but it blew us all over the road in gusts.
We had to wash out the water system after arriving here as it was full of the pink stuff. This is much easier when you are on full hookups. Still we had to get the water heater going and the black tank with some chemical. I filled the fresh water about half way too so we would have something to use the potty with while we were traveling.
Oklahoma doesn't have restrooms at their rest stops, so the potty is the one you have with you. It looks weird to see the pull offs with nothing but green dumpsters alongside the roads.
So we are spending the first night of our winter trip tonight, and I couldn't be any more excited........
Saturday, November 26, 2011
So while the girls played in the new basement, we were organizing our stuff to get ready to head out for this winter. I spent the morning working on loading the utility trailer. It already had the motor scooter inside but we haul a lot more stuff than that in the trailer and it all needs loaded up.
So we are busy beavers here trying to get ourselves back into the RV mode. The motorhome hasn't moved other than from storage to the house since we went to the Black Hills the first week of August. To say we are totally settled into the sticks and bricks home would be an understatement.
I can't go at this work too long without sitting down for a while, so I spent as much time in the big chair as I did outside. Perhaps tomorrow will be a better day........
Friday, November 25, 2011
We opted to bring the 10 pound spiral cut ham with the brown sugar glaze that only took about 2 or more hours, so we had to be up by about 9 AM!!! But hey at least we brought food.
We got a little crossed up as Chris and I decided that I would make the mashed potatoes, and Loyce and Melissa decided that I didn't need to go to that much work. Just out of the hospital and all. So I was up before Loyce and peeled about 10 pounds of spuds and had them in the pot ready to cook when I found out that Mel was making them too.
So, we had mashed potatoes coming out of our ears. When we were cleaning up, I mixed the bowls of potatoes together so that no one would know who's were who's. Take home left overs and have some of each, LOL. Maybe they can donate some to the food bank.........
Anyway it has been a long time since I have had that much to eat, and all on one plate mind you. And we had pumpkin pie and pecan pie with whipped topping for desert later in the afternoon.
Of course we men had to sit in the family room watching the football games and the gals had to play with the youngest baby that John and Heather graciously brought along. John is Melissa's brother and her mother and father were there too, so some of the kids had grandparents coming out of their ears.
I didn't get a count of the number of folks that sat down but it was two very large dining tables full. And the kids table as well.
Just family fun. As one of the Maxine cartoons said, I told Chris that if he didn't want so many folks to come over for dinner, all he had to do was leave the Turkey a little under cooked and sort of raw and they would all find somewhere else for next year.
He looked at me seriously, and said "Ya Right!!"
Hope you had a good celebration at your family get together as well!
Thursday, November 24, 2011
Wednesday, November 23, 2011
I have been going to the Kansas University Hospital which is KU as in Basket Ball Champions umpteen times. The Hospital is a teaching university hospital and is on the cutting edge of most things. And this procedure that I had, was right up there on that edge.
Scar tissue had formed on and in one of the little tubes that comes down from my kidney and they needed to remove it. Rather than open me back up from the front with a big incision, they used ultra sound and Xrays to put a needle into my back and into this tube. They put a plastic tube over the needle and put it into the little kidney tube. Then the needle is removed, leaving the tube.
Then they put a wire into the plastic tube. Next they remove the plastic tube and leave in the wire. Then they slip in a little bigger plastic tube and take out the wire. I was left with this tube in overnight while they drained the kidney until the fluid coming out was clear. That was Monday's procedure.
Then yesterday I went back into a bigger operating room where they used successively bigger wire and bigger tubing until they could insert a laparscope and remove the scar tissue. Then like a blood vessel in a closed artery in your heart, they inserted a plastic stint inside the kidney tube. It will stay there for a couple of months, while the whole thing heals around it.
I will have no sensation that it is even in there, but it will keep the passage open, until they decide to remove it. They will watch it with radio active dye and a camera that can see the dye.
I was told that only a few years ago the only way to take care of this problem was to go thru the complete abdominal surgery route again. Not a pleasant thought....
So while I sit here and type this, I can feel the unpleasant feeling of where the needle and tubing were inserted in my back, but I am told it will be gone in a day or two. All I had was a band aid over the place they went in, for last night, and the surgeon took that off today at noon and told me I was good to go........ Like in go home, which is where I am right now at 2 PM on Wednesday afternoon.....
I still had two days of staying in the hospital with them keeping me up all night, at least every hour on the hour for something like my vitals, or at 4 AM this morning, the phlebotomist was certain that I need to give her another vial of blood for them to test. Since I knew I was going home anyway, I just pleasantly declined to let her stick me. She wasn't a bit happy about it, but I said absolutely not!
So I was up at 4 AM for all day........
I think I will try and take a nap.......
Monday, November 21, 2011
The first day of this fun is in the books.. I was knocked out mid afternoon and had a tube put in my back. No one said this was going to be easy. The big surgery is tomorrow. I will be under a lot longer for that one.
This little smart phone is hard to type on for me so see ya later......
I decided to take my bigger recliner over to the motorhome in the pickup today and switch out the Euro Chair that came with the rig. If you aren't going anywhere too far or plan to sit in the chair for extended periods, I get along using the Euro Chair. But if you are going for all winter, its a Lazy Boy for me.
I had to go get my son Ben to help me lift it up into the motorhome as the main floor is about chest high when you are standing on the ground outside. We wiggled together and managed to get it thru the door when it was on its side. We had taken the back off, or it would never have made it.
I am certain they will put the ten pound lifting restriction back on me after tomorrow, so that had to get done now.
We also put the anode rod back in the water heater with teflon tape to seal it up. You just know it will be after dark and below freezing while I fill the water tank and heater in our first campground after we leave here. It is always below freezing as we travel to Arizona, unless we take the most Southern road which is I 10.
We took I 40 last year and had temps in the teens in Albuquerque and Holbrook. No water hose on the rig on those nights. Just plug in the electric and wait till morning. I do let the gray water go though before I take off to travel. I usually don't worry about the black unless it has been about a week.
So we are sitting here listening to the heater drone on in the basement with a space heater running as well. We have to have thanksgiving you know.
Since I need to be up at 5:30 or so in the morning, I will sign off for now..... Wish me luck......
PS: Thanks for all the well wishes that everyone has been leaving, I really appreciate the positive support. This will be my 6th surgery in the last year, so I am more than depressed about it........
Sunday, November 20, 2011
At the lake place, I found everything to be in order, but of course the water has evaporated out of all the toilets and sink traps. That is usually the first order of business, to go around and run all the sinks, showers and flush the toilets.
I checked the heat to make sure it came on and warmed up. It had that burned dust smell, so I don't think it has been started yet even though it was below freezing outside several times. We set it at 45F so it will take several days of cold to cause it to begin to run.
I went to the dock and put air into the floating boat lift. It is automatic and will air itself if it goes down, but I always add extra air until it bubbles out of the back of the floats. Back in the house I decided that since there was absolutely nothing in the big fridge I should turn it off. I did remember to dump the big Ice Cube bin first, as that would have made quite a mess. I left the doors open and put blue painters tape over the light switches.
So after turning off the water at the entrance valve I left to come home. It was almost 8 PM when I got back here to KC.
But now I will sleep better knowing that everything was OK in November. It will be more than 12 weeks now before we get back.
That all depends on when we get to leave in the first place. I guess that depends on how my body reacts to the laparoscopic surgery. And that things don't go really wrong and I get another incision. That would kill most of our plans for this year.......
Saturday, November 19, 2011
I have to have another procedure to go in and fix the surgery from September. Of course the surgeon acts like it will be no big deal, but it does require me to stay at the hospital 2 nights and I will be put under twice, and that sounds a lot like more surgery to me.
The good news is that it will be done next week as I was almost in tears that it would delay or perhaps negate the possibility of going to Arizona. I really live for my trip in the winter.........
We did swing back past the furniture store and pick up that last table later this afternoon, and I went down stairs and put it together in about 45 minutes. Since it was just like the one I did on Wednesday, I didn't even look at the directions........
Monday back at KU Medical at 8 AM.......... Bring your tooth brush........
Friday, November 18, 2011
I didn't purchase a table to go under the TV yesterday as the truck was full of packages of new wooden furniture, and I didn't want the extra weight on top of the TV. So back to Best Buy this morning. After looking at all the tables on hand and finally selecting one, the sales lady looked in the computer and decided that they did have one in the warehouse.
She disappeared for the longest time, and eventually I went to the store room door and inquired if she was still back there somewhere. And she was but wasn't finding the TV stand. She found some assistance once they finished unloading a semi truck that was rather full.
So just in the nick of time, she came out with a big box on a two wheel dolly. She led me to a cash register in the home theater section of the store that was a long ways from the register that we started at originally. She rang up the box and asked for $97. The tag on the display table said $179..... Whoa, I just kept my mouth shut, and swiped the credit card.........
She led me to the front door where the door man looked over the box and told me to go get the truck. Once in the truck, I examined the sales slip and it had a $90 discount on it for a discontinued item.. Well, what do I care if it is discontinued? It will still work as a TV stand...... My good fortune!
Once home, I was loading the box into the house and managed to let it get away from me and it banged rather hard on the ground. The table was glass, and I thought I had broken it. It rattled...... I opened the box right there in the front yard and found the glass........... still in tact!! I was hearing the parts card with all the hardware rattle. My heart was still fluttering as I thought I was toast......
Loyce came out and we carried the pieces down to the basement. I was kept busy for over an hour as I put part Q into hole XX and secured it with the enclosed itty bitty allen wrench. Eventually it was together. Was I ever careful with the glass shelves........
And on the tables that the furniture place assembled before they delivered last week, we kept looking at one of them trying to understand what was wrong with the finish on one of the shelves. Last night, we decided that we were looking at the bottom of the shelf because it was in up side down!
By getting down on the floor and looking up at the underside, it was finished nicely. We discussed calling and taking the table back, but it is 20 miles up there. Loyce thought she would get another table and give them the wrong one back.
But in the mean time, I began to take the 24 allen screws out of the table to see if it would come apart without breaking anything. It did! It only took about another hour to get back together right. It looks much better tonight sitting here beside my chair.....
I asked Loyce if she ever had an Erector Set when she was a kid, since we were putting so much stuff together in the last several days... She said "No, but I think one of my brothers did." I am certain that playing with that set helped me put many an item together as an adult.
We still have another table to pick up at the furniture store when it comes in supposedly tomorrow. I think I will go on strike.
Thursday, November 17, 2011
We had ordered a coffee table to go along with an end table and it was to show up today. So we had to drive back up to the speedway exit and go get in line to pick it up. Of course we couldn't just do a pickup, we had to go shop all of the big store again.
And yes that meant we had even more treasures that Loyce came away with. Now back in line to get that table, and that was when we found out that they come in a box completely in pieces. She also bought a couple of small side tables for the basement, and of course one of them was not in stock. But we did pick up the one they had. And, it was in a box in pieces as well.
While Loyce was shopping, I ended up looking for a TV for the basement, and picked one out only to find that they didn't have that either. It will be two weeks before they get more, so I just gave up. We should be gone from here by then.
But I ended up stopping at Best Buy, where they had the same TV for only a few dollars more. They would have price matched NFM, but when they found out they were out of stock the price match deal was gone. If you can't get it today over there, then our price is what it is. Then I found out that they only had 2 at Best Buy. And our Olathe store was out as well. So I paid the extra money and felt glad to just get one.
By now the back of the pickup was beginning to look a little full, so we drove home and began to load all of this into the house. The assembly procedures began after that which took quite a while as we have no experience like they do.
I did get the TV up and running in the new basement room, so now it is official that I can go down there and hide! Putting together furniture that was made in China with Chinese bolts and nuts is slow going. Their quality control on their hardware is not like US made stuff. But we need to keep the overall cost somewhat low so that means "Made in China!"
I don't think anyone will come over and turn our coffee table over to see if it has a USA stamp on the bottom........ And if they do, perhaps we need friends that are less particular!! LOL
By the way, the pressure cap for the Onan is also special order and will take several weeks to acquire so that is off our list before departure now......
Wednesday, November 16, 2011
Tuesday, November 15, 2011
So one came and went, but this time they called us, and said they were right around the corner......... Ya, right......... Then 2 came and they called again and said we were next....... And low and behold they came in about 15 more minutes.
This was the furniture company that was to deliver the new couch that replaced the one that went to the new basement. The fellows were quite nice and carried it all the way into our back sitting room next to the kitchen.
Loyce must like the new couch a bunch because she chased her beloved Biscuit off of the seat in almost a heart beat. "Get off and stay off!!!" Eww, I haven't had the nerve to go over and sit on it either, I'll get the same treatment if I know what's good for me.......... Maybe after she goes to bed.......
We also purchased a lamp to go on one of the tables, and when we opened he box, there were three lamps in it. Seems as though we had purchased a set of lamps and didn't even know it. I thought the price seemed a little high for one lamp, but then what do I know. Anyway it was late in the afternoon when we got all the stuff put together and the old carried away.
So that spent our day. Just sitting around waiting for the truck....... Well I read the internet and caught up on all those blogs that I didn't read yesterday.
Oh, and I think I wasn't clear about the diesel fuel thing yesterday, I wasn't worried about the price of fuel, but rather stations are out of fuel! The shortage reported North of here has stations running out of fuel completely and folks have to wait until they get more. I was concerned that we might get tight down here in KC and wanted to have enough in my tank to make it as far away as possible.
Since there are refineries in West Texas, I surmise the availability down there should be better....... I hope!! Or perhaps this is just a real short term deal and prices will drop as soon as everyone gets their winter heating oil barrel filled.
Anyway our tank is topped up and we have no way to store any more, nor would we want to as fuel oil is a fairly large fire risk.........
Monday, November 14, 2011
We have read yesterday that there is somewhat of a shortage of diesel fuel up in the upper Northwest. South Dakota and Nebraska seem to be the center of the problem. But it is driving up fuel prices all around here, and I was able to confirm that by going on line and looking at local fuel prices which are close or over the $4 mark.
Since car gas is about $3.25 that is quite a spread from gas to diesel. I managed to find a station that had $3.79 fuel so I went and got the motorhome and filled its tank to the very brim. Prices may stay the same or rise and fall before we leave, but if we have a shortage that stretches down here to KC, at least we would have enough fuel to get to Northern Texas. Oklahoma and Texas have fuel because it is pumped out of the ground there.
After filling up, I brought the coach home and began to wash it. It is rather slow going, but with some rest every now and then, I managed to work most of the afternoon and got the entire coach washed.
The sun started to go down, so I had to go put the motorhome away at the storage lot. A lot of time spent and not much gained. The water spots from the unsoftened water here at our house are all over the coach, and have replaced the white streaks from the rainwater of the last few months in storage. Is that progress? Lets hope so.......
I do know that I was very tired after the day of washing outside. So even after 8 weeks I am not up to full stamina. One day at a time.
Sunday, November 13, 2011
If you have never seen this process, it takes a lot of air. So much so that they bring a tow behind free standing jack hammer compressor. I think the fellow said it was 150 cubic feet per minute. Most of my compressors struggle with 6 cfm. It does take a lot of volume to blow out the lines in the yard.
They hook up the air line and back blow the back flow valve, once the water is secured. Then they open each zone in the system allowing the water to spray out of the sprinkler heads. We have 9 zones, so it takes a while as the water in the lines is replaced with air. This is where all the volume is required because as air comes out some heads water is still being pushed out of others. Eventually they all blow air and then it is time to go to the next zone.
I have never left KC without having this task complete. I don't trust that someone would come and complete it just because I made the appointment. They do have a port where they can run the system with a remote, as long as it is in the on position at the controller, but having them run the main box always seems better.
I did mow the yard for the last time this morning as well. This is the first time I have mowed since the surgery, and even though I use a John Deere tractor for the main portion of the job, I felt every bump and jostle. No springs on riding mowers!! I did use the walk behind Lawn Boy to trim around the plantings and house for a while, and believe me I could not have finished the job with it! Still not out of the woods that far to be sure.
The remainder of the afternoon became football games, until Loyce announced we were going out for Saturday night. We went to Red Robin where I could get my plain hamburger and some of their tasty french fries. I still need food without too much spice, since they also resected my bowel in this process. That was done last year as well, so I know it will take several months to get back to normal after that.
But I am that much closer in my goal of meeting John Brown for a Burger at Fuddruckers in Mesa. Umm, sweet potato fries!!!!
Saturday, November 12, 2011
The kids sang songs and they showed a video of solders leaving their families behind as they went off to war. Being politically correct, they left out any scenes of war activities, thank goodness. Then the kids all went into the audience and got their parents or grandparents that were veterans and we all crossed up front where the kids had to announce who we were and where we had served and our service branch.
Caden was all set to do it, but then Ema came running up when she saw us in line and didn't give him much of a chance as she grabbed the microphone and rattled off all the pertinent facts. I think that was alright with Caden, because he seemed nervous about talking in front of the whole school. But not Ema!
They played more songs and then sang America the Beautiful which was followed by Taps on two bugles.
I always have trouble with Taps, because we used to honor our fallen soldiers in Viet Nam as they were sent home, by bugling Taps under the yardarm flags in our administration circle. Often times it was a buddy of yours that they were bugling to his resting place, and that was tough! The bugle has a somber sound and the bugler often time extends the final notes in the cadence which seems to accentuate the finalness of his task.
Dah Dah Daaaaaah, Dah Dee Deeeeeee, and at the end, Dee Dah Dah, Dah Dah Deeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee! To this day the tears well up in my eyes every time I hear this eerie sound. Takes me right back, 40 years later.... Luckily the high school fellows that they had enlisted to play the song didn't know how to drag those final notes and I got thru it without loosing it completely.
Without the Principal even saying anything when Taps began, all of the service people stood at attention automatically! Folks from Iraq and Desert Storm clear back to some very elderly WWII vets. Time honored and service wide, this tradition is as firm now as it was in WWI.
I'm not sure if the kids understood how powerful these traditions can be, but they are very aware of their surroundings and the actions of their elders, so they will come to understand fairly quickly.
Other than school, we had a fairly quiet day here in Overland Park and Olathe, Kansas.
Friday, November 11, 2011
The subject of this little adventure was going to Nebraska Furniture Mart, our big warehouse style furniture store on the West side of KC, Kansas metro. Its in a big new business complex that also houses the Nascar racing track.
As you remember, we had moved her sofa that was here in the family room to the new basement yesterday, sooo.... Now we need a new one!! She had that all planned out long ago, but I was just let in on the little secret this morning.
This furniture store is larger than a football field and has two floors, so most of the time I am in there I am lost, but of course Loyce on the other hand knew exactly which door to go in and which escalator to take up to the sofa living room display area. To me, I just wanted to bolt out to the car with Biscuit!
Eventually I picked out the piece that I liked and sat down on it without saying too much. I just waited. And before long she came over and said something to me and then stopped and looked at what I was sitting on and said, "What's wrong with that one?"
I guess it is lucky that we have been together for 43 years, because we do have about the same taste in stuff. I bought her the Honda CRV and she never even went to look at it until I brought it home. She loves its color, so I got lucky.
Anyway she picked a couple of small tables, and one of them I had already seen and liked. So we went to the checkouts and arranged the payment. We did decide to upgrade the sofa to the next more expensive one, because I began to look at the upholstery carefully and decided that it was a fairly cheap grade. So I had to get her back over to look at the next more expensive model. It was a tad darker, and then she changed one of her tables too. The salesman was hating us by about then.
This seemed to kill a lot of the afternoon, and when we got home, I had a door that needed cut off to go over the new carpet. I had to dig out the table saw in our messy garage. That turned into a cleaning and straightening project. And in the end, I couldn't get the fence close enough to the blade to just skim off 3/8ths of an inch, so out came the skill saw and I cut it off by hand.
If I had started that way to begin with the cleaning project would have been a lot shorter. But now we have the doors back on to cover the storage areas, so it is looking more finished.
We received a call from the store that they had all the pieces here in KC and that they would be out on Monday. They had a big sign outside that said "Free Delivery Special", but that didn't apply to our purchase for some reason, but I didn't even bother to listen to the why part. I just hate stores that advertise things that turn out to not be how it will work out when you get there.
I could go after the stuff with the utility trailer, but then how would I get it into the house? And the utility trailer has the big scooter in it ready to go to Arizona, so it would be a big pain. I guess the $60 fee to get it delivered isn't so bad after all.
Happy Veterans Day (Remembrance Day) to all of our past service members! I served in Viet Nam in 1969 at the height of the troop numbers in Country. Nixon became president that year and began pulling out the troops, and our unit came up for removal before Christmas, even though we were scheduled to stay until March of the following year. After that, I never thought that Nixon was such a bad fellow..........
Thursday, November 10, 2011
She was five last week, and that doesn't seem possible!!! Anyway I took some bad pictures with the cell phone but I will include them anyway.........
She was busy blowing out the flame on the giant 5 candle while her sister Ema (center) and cousin Clare look on.
This was the cake before we cut a bunch of the top row off so everyone got a piece. She had both Grandmas there too, so she had a pile of presents to open up, but she was almost more interested in going and riding another kiddy ride and spending her tokens.
Since it is a school night, we adjourned about 8 PM and headed back for our respective homes.
We were awakened this morning with the carpet layers calling about 7 AM saying they were coming right over to get started on our floor. We both tossed on some clothes and got ready for their arrival.
I had moved all the chairs and a table out of the room the night before, but they wanted the bar fridge moved away too. They rolled up the cord and put it in the small bedroom that I had tiled several weeks ago.
These fellows worked as fast as they could go and took no breaks. First the tack strips with concrete nails were installed all around the room. Then the metal strips in all the doorways were put in with bigger nails that they hammer drilled into the floor.
One of the guys began carrying down the pad rolls, while the main guy was cutting it in sections and gluing it down. Next came the carpet itself. It was in three rolls, and they struggled to get the big roll around the corner at the bottom of the stairs.
By about 11 they were vacuuming the newly installed and finished room. 76 yards installed.
Loyce needed a sofa moved and a hutch, so she offered to pay some extra cash money if they would help us. Lets see, tax free spending money, why sure we'll help. The sofa is a sleeper with the bed that pulls out and weighs a ton. We took the cushions off and the mattress out but still it is way more than we could handle even if I hadn't had surgery 8 weeks ago.
We spent most of the afternoon moving smaller stuff into the new room and trying to get the space incorporated into our living area. Until now, we have always been waiting for yet another tradesman to come and install something else, but now it seems like it belongs to us!
And For Sandy and others......
I posted this picture of Abby and Biscuit back in July as she was sitting under a very determined Biscuit that wouldn't get out of her car seat, for those that missed it I will repost it again.
Wednesday, November 9, 2011
I left the house to go over to storage about 11 AM, and pulled in behind the motorhome with the pickup. You know the drill in the storage places, move the motorhome and park the truck on the exact spot that you have rented, and then drive to the gate.
Of course the gate code number entry box is down low to the ground for cars, so you have to get out of the motorhome and walk across in front of the vehicle and enter the code by crouching down to its level. Then you have to run as fast as you can back to the door and wait while the steps extend, scurrying up into the coach. Jump in the seat with your foot on the brake, and try to get the electronic push button shift to engage drive. About that time the gate starts to close and you have to try and beat it the second time. With my recent surgery, I just waited at the gate for someone to come along and open it for me. About 10 minutes was all.
It was already noon by the time I got back to the house with the coach which made me late already. Loyce was still at her doctors appointment, so there went my ride. I drove straight to Freightliner service in Olathe, calling my oldest son Chris in the process to see if he could pick me up.
I did make it about 1:15, where I learned that the appointment was just set as PM which meant sometime after lunch, and the ticket writer said " your about right!" Chris came about 1:30 and retrieved me from the dirty truck garage. They have no waiting area at all just a counter that you can lean against.
It was still raining and the parking lot is all gravel (Mud). Biscuit was with me since I didn't want to leave her all alone all day, so grand daughter Abby got to hold Biscuit in her car seat again like she always does. That is such a gas to see, because Biscuit is as big as Abby. Bif Cut, Bif cut she screams endlessly. She's three..
Chris got me back to our house about 2 PM, where Loyce was home. She had to go over to the elementary school to be with Abby's older sister Claire for daisy scouts, so she announced that we were leaving in about 20 minutes. This is where it gets kind of dicey, because Chris just left me off.
So we rode back over to Chris' house, but I did get a Wendy's burger in the process. By now it was 3:15. At about 4 we suspected that the coach should be done, so he drove me back over to Freightliner. Now the garage is less than a mile from his house so this isn't a big deal. Still raining like cats and dogs, I just jumped out and he left.
That was when I found out that the brake light switch warranty recall repair had gone badly and they didn't have the oil change service even started. They offered me one of the office chairs where a fellow was home sick, and I just hung around for another hour.
In the meantime, Loyce, Chris and Mel had made Potato soup and I learned that supper was back at Mel's kitchen. Loyce just watched this process, as I think Chris was acting as head chef. Anyway I drove the motorhome back to Chris' house after paying the $275 bill. They changed both fuel filters, which adds another $50 to the total.
By now it was totally dark and still raining that misty windy 40 degree rain. I ran over several curbs in the process. I just can't see in the mirrors at night to negotiate the turns like in the daytime.
After eating, I was still worried about the rainy darkness, and politely excused myself to drive back over to the storage place, where I lucked out when someone had just opened the gate. It was almost 8 PM when I got home with the pickup. 9 hours later...........
And people wonder why I do these things myself..................
Tuesday, November 8, 2011
So this morning it was my time to go back to the root doctor and catch him up. If I need prescriptions or other things while we are away, it is a whole lot easier if he has seen me a couple of months ago. I seemed to pass his inspection but of course he had to change my prescriptions all around....... What else is new?
Our weather here turned off all rainy, because it seemed to warm up a bit and a warm front hit cool air and then the rain came. The afternoon turned cloudy, foggy, and kind of steamy even though it never was much more than 60 degrees.
As I headed over to Wendy's in the middle afternoon and then Wal Mart to look for some fleece pull over shirts, the windows were steamed. I ate the sandwich in the car, and that didn't help with the drippy effect.
Wal Mart didn't have what I was looking for and I ended up going to several more Wal Marts in the area. Eventually I found what I was looking for, but that took the rest of the afternoon. Living in a big city, we are lucky to have 5 Wal Marts within a few miles of our home.
With the time change, it was almost dark by the time I got back home. I really seem to be depressed about the dark after the time goes back to standard time. It must be a psychological thing, but it is real. I'm sure I will get used to it in a few days.
Now it is late at night, but the lightening is flashing rapidly and the rain is pouring down outside. Perhaps it is quite alright that we are here in the warm sticks and bricks house rather than our RV tonight.
Monday, November 7, 2011
Read the book, gasp! Oh, its been so long since I used it the battery has gone flat. So fairly early this morning I was over at Wal Mart looking for a replacement. Nope not in the pharmacy where they sell the machines. Nope not in Jewelry where they sell those flat type of watch batteries. Nope not in electronics, but the fellow there did tell me to go to the photo department several aisles over.
And even then I had to sort thru bunches of cards and thought I was out of luck but right there in the middle of the rack was the peg with the one I needed. I did get back out of there fairly quick, as I went to the tobacco checkout counter that is listed as 10 items or less.
But other that that trip, I never left the house all day. I had the Nascar race running most of the afternoon, and browsed the internet and browsed. I'm not sure I ever napped. Oh, I know I got started making homemade noodles for Chicken and Noodles. My grandma made them and so did my mom, so I know how, when I get so inclined.
That kept me busy for a couple of hours off and on. But Chicken and Noodles is a really good comfort food so I enjoyed the results.
Of course it seems like it is the middle of the night as I write this, but the clock only says 10 PM. Gonna take a while to get used to this time change stuff...........
Sunday, November 6, 2011
But we haven't had a single call again looking for Gerald, or trying to get a loan. Perhaps it is a weekend thing and they will be back on Monday, but the call blocker is waiting.
Of course today was Saturday and watching the Hawkeye football game occupied the middle of my day, and the Hawks won........... Barely! They played Michigan and after a couple of turnovers on the Wolverine's part, the Hawks were ahead. Michigan mounted a comeback in the 4th quarter and were not to be denied. They were still in a goal line stand with 2 seconds left that could have tied the game, but somehow they passed incomplete and Iowa won.
I get so tense during these big games that it just drains me for the rest of the afternoon. I watched other games, but didn't seem to care much. A lot of aimless TV.
Tonight is the time change, and as you know I collect watches, so I have been sitting here changing the time on oodles of watches. Messing around with each one making sure it still works. I think I am now ready for the time to change. But hey, I need to change all the clocks in the stove and microwave and cars and............
Saturday, November 5, 2011
These are almost always far Eastern voices like they are from India or one of those countries, and they are in a room full of callers talking all at once in the background. 4 or 5 calls a day began to reach my phone and now they don't hang up. They keep talking to you and you can't hang up on them either because they somehow hold your phone on the line.
I have called T-Mobile, my carrier and they claim they know nothing about this. At first I thought it was individuals looking for me (Gerald) to make them a loan to buy a car. The phone numbers are random from area codes all over the country. But then after several calls today, I began to get repeat numbers.
Not only are they burning my phone minutes, I have spent a lot of time on the phone with T-Mobile trying to resolve what to do about it. Their only suggestion is to change my phone number. I've had it for 10 years, so changing it now seems like leaving all my old friends behind.
So in desperation I typed the phone numbers into google. That brought up WhoCallsMe dot com which has responses from all the other folks that have been called from these numbers. Sometimes it is an auto loan, and others claim to be an attorney doing collections. The callers threaten to have the police come and arrest you. We don't have debtors prison here in the US so that isn't going to happen.
I looked up 7 different numbers that have called looking for Gerald Coffie, and in every case it is this same group from India that is badgering folks. Its some kind of a scam to get your social security number and other pertinent facts so they can steal your identity.
This afternoon I downloaded an App on my android phone called mobile manager that will block unwanted calls from specific numbers. It will block everything that isn't in your contact list if you want, but I do get outside calls that are for us, so that seems too drastic.
I loaded all the numbers that the auto finance folks have been using into the blocker, and so far I am now call free. But it is only a matter of time that they use a new number I don't have blocked. Every time they call now, that new number will get blocked.
So beware of calls for auto loans. Collection agents, and the like. Now days they are probably phony, and their origin is usually outside of the US. The phone company says they can't do a thing about it!
Friday, November 4, 2011
Thursday, November 3, 2011
It is now fairly late at night and I have forgotten about today for a while, but still just thinking about it seems to cause me to go grrrr. But lets see if I can just report the facts as they happened.
Remember that I need the overflow tank for my Onan generator that I found cracked the other day? So I drove out to Olathe Ford RV in Gardner, Ks as they are listed as the closest dealer. I waited at the parts counter for a while until a lady decided to help me.
I asked for the coolant recovery tank for a 6 KW diesel Onan. She had a chart of the models and I pointed to the specific model on her chart HDKAH. She seemed perplexed. She said they just order parts from the Cumins dealer up in North Kansas City. Now what is it that you want?
She didn't like my model number even though it was directly off of her hard plastic chart that they look up oil and air filters from. She told me I was wrong. She asked me again, "What is it you need?" Eventually after looking at the computer for a while she declared that there was no such thing in the generator.
"You need to go get your model number straightened out and find out what the part is called before I can help you!" and with that she sat down at her desk with her back to me and started calling someone on the telephone. At first I thought she might be calling Cumins, but no it was a completely unrelated matter for someone else. She was just done helping me.
I have never been able to do business with these folks very well, but they are our only game in town here locally. My younger son purchased his RV here, and my older son took his in for repairs, and they ripped the steps off of his 5ver because they forgot to fold them up and caught them on a concrete post. They still haven't made that right. I'm not sure what I expected by going out there in the first place. I guess I should have known better, so it is all my fault to begin with.....
Anyway, I drove back here about 15 miles and the windows were all steamed over most of the way on the inside............
Wednesday, November 2, 2011
But then it is the first day of November, and winter is a lot closer than any of us want to admit to. This week end is the time change and things will really seem dark and dingy once it is dark when we are eating supper.
But the definite highlight of our day, was late in the afternoon, when Lynette and Mac of Mac and Nette's Retirement Adventures, stopped by our house here in KC. In fairness, we knew that they were coming because they called last night and said they would be in town doing Doctor visits and such.
We hadn't seen this fine couple since we inadvertently stumbled on to them last fall in Amarillo, Texas. They spent the winter in Yuma, and we spent it in Mesa, so even though we were both in Arizona we seemed miles apart. Well, we both read each other's blogs so not that many miles.
Some how we ended up down in the new basement room which has no carpet and very sparse furniture, but that didn't seem to matter as we were all talking a mile a minute catching up on all the stories that we needed the rest of the details on.
When you read the blogs, you only get a small snippet of the facts and happenings, and that causes almost more questions than answers. So it becomes what about this and what about that. Three hours just disappeared. We needed to let them get back on the road because it is over an hour back to Garnet where they are parked in their old home town. But it was almost 8 PM before they left. Sorry about that, but it seemed like old home week.
Since we haven't been able to do much in the way of RVing due to my health issues, we seem to be completely out of the loop, so perhaps we pry a bunch of info all at once, but then I know we enjoyed their thoughtfulness to stop by.
So that was the end of our day but a delightful surprise!
Tuesday, November 1, 2011
This is Halloween, and Loyce likes to have all the kids and grandkids come over here for Halloween, so she was cleaning and getting the house ready for that all day, and I have learned to keep myself small during these times.
Now obviously I can't change my rotund size, but by keeping myself small, I mean sitting over here in the corner and not making a mess anywhere... Just speak when spoken to and otherwise stay out of the way.
Fast forward until tonight, when we had the extra large bucket of Original finger licking good chicken with all the fixins. Both sons and their wives and five grandkids polished it all off. The kids and parents canvased our neighborhood for all the goodies available, and then they were back about 8PM devouring it as fast as possible.
The sugar highs set in and the younger ones began to cry and not listen to their parents. So the party was over just as fast as it started. Tomorrow is a school day! I meant to take some pictures of the costume get ups, but I'm still not moving fast enough to catch younguns when they are on a sugar high.
Anyway Loyce thinks Halloween is one of here special times of the year, and we will never ever leave before the first of November. Never!