Monday, May 31, 2021

Monday, May 31, 2021

Boy, there will be a lot of headaches in this park this morning and much deserved by the rude thugs that partied and raised hell until after 3:00 am this morning.  The loud beat of drums from their music meant was so loud that Tom and I couldn’t sleep - I wonder about all of the rest of our neighbors. Quiet time in the park is 11:00 pm and Tom made a call to the office after midnight and, of course, he was only able to leave a message.  He also called the county sheriff’s office and was told that there was no noise ordinance in the county. And there we laid hearing the thumping of the base.  

The next morning I learned that they were asked to leave and to never return to the park.

Sunday, May 30, 2021

Sunday, May 30, 2021

Happy Memorial Day, the day that we remember those who have fallen while serving our country. I have only personally known two classmates who died in Vietnam.  May they Rest In Peace.

We went to the State Park again to see if the hiking trail had dried up at all. It was much better but we still had some flooded areas to find a way around, kind of messy.  We did get about a 1 3/4 mile walk in and ended up having to do a thorough check for ticks as I had 10+ on me and Tom found only a couple. Some were the common wood ticks that were very visible and others were tiny deer ticks.  Lyme disease is not very prevalent here, fingers crossed that we found them all.  Back at home, I checked Frisco thoroughly and I didn’t find a new ones but I found an old swollen one that had been feeding on him for a while. I managed to remove it cleanly and I hope it doesn’t get infected. Damn things!

I have to photo the local wildflowers.

Savannah Loop and Longhorn Loop (mirrored and blurry image)

We had dinner at the El Jarocho Mexican restaurant this evening and I believe that it was the best Mexican food I have had in a long, long time. First, the Margarita tasted like it was freshly made and not from a batched mix.  Second, the quesadilla fajita entree was served with lettuce topped with pico de Gallo and guacamole and not the usual retried beans and rice. Both of our first bites produced a positive comment - the seasoning was just right, whatever it was. 

A stop for gas and a few things at Walmart topped off the afternoon. Tomorrow will be a stick around camp, do laundry, and get ready for traveling again on Tuesday.

Saturday, May 29, 2021

Saturday, May 29, 2021

Yesterday was a day to just hang around camp all day. I took advantage of being stationary and gave my car a much-needed protective coating of wax.  There was no need to wash it in advance because of the heavy rain that we got on Thursday night.

This place has filled up for Memorial Day weekend - a steady stream of RVs arrived yesterday and there is lots of activity - dogs barking, kids playing and riding bikes, music playing, and families and friends gathered around. We sat at the picnic table and played a card game called Five Crowns and got ice cream bars from the ice cream truck. 

The weather has been beautiful the last two days - sunny blue skies and much lower humidity with temps in the low 70s.  It has dropped to the 50s at night and I had to put an extra blanket on the bed.

Friday, May 28, 2021

Friday, May 28, 2021

We tried hard to get a walk in yesterday after having breakfast at the ‘I Smell Bacon’ cafe in Eufala (a small non-descript town with a population of about 2,800). We stopped back at the trailer, changed our shoes and got Frisco and headed to Lake Eufala State Park.  The park ranger showed us where the trails were but when we walked to them, we found the field leading to the trail and the trail itself were soaking wet. No hike there.  The drive back to the RV park took us through Chekotah and we turned on a street that led to a city sports complex and found a nice trail to walk there.

The Accuweather App tells us that we are in Texanna, OK so we took a drive along Texanna road the other day to find Texanna and found no indications of a town, crossroads, or settlement. So today, we were in the area again and put Texanna as our destination on the GPS and - same thing - no town, crossroads, or even a settlement. The only thing we found was a huge electric power generator. When I got back home, I checked Wikipedia and found that it is a census-designated place in the county and that is all.  Weird!

Heavy storms were predicted and we had about an hour of heavy rain and high winds but no tornado activity, thankfully.  We were right on the edge of the storms that were tracking to the northeast.

Wednesday, May 26, 2021

Wednesday, May 26, 2021

I left Bob’s at about 9:00 yesterday morning and headed for the Little Turtle RV Park near Eufala, OK where I will meet up with Tom and do some camping for a couple of weeks.  The trip was uneventful but with several stops - I had to potty, Frisco had to potty, we didn’t find a one-stop shop, I was hungry or I was tired, so I had 5 hours of driving time and a full hour of stops.

I arrived and Tom met me at the entrance and led me to our site. The park is nice and big with lots of amenities. We managed to get a walk in after our dinner at Watts BBQ, in between the rain drops.  It seems as if there is a huge cloud overhead as the ground is soaked and soggy everywhere, just as it was in Missouri.

Lake Eufala

Because of the recent signs of anxiety that Frisco has been showing, I got a prescription for Trazodone for him to help calm him down.  I gave it to him the day before I traveled and then cut the dose for the travel days. I don’t think I will give it to him again as it calmed him down but he sure didn’t sleep - awake both full days of driving.

I forgot to mention that I heard from the manager at Penelope 35 Apartments and I am number one on the list and they have an apartment available for me.  She is willing to hold it for me so I can give the required notice to vacate my current apartment. I accepted it and sent my 60 day notice to the Winslow. I will be moving the end of July - dang, I hope it’s the last one. Five different moves in the last five years hasn’t been fun.

Monday, May 24, 2021

Monday, May 24, 2021

I realized Friday morning that I had overlooked the fact that my tires on the car were due for a rotation and I just happened to be able to get it into Costco that day - so they are ready for the road trip now.

I had a sleepover with the girls on Friday night so Ben and Jill could go out for dinner together. They were very well behaved and we had a fun time, having pizza, watching a movie and then getting ready for bed. I left pretty early the next morning as I had to get ready for my trip.

When I cleaned up my car on Saturday afternoon, I noticed an oil spot on the ground where I park, so I took it back to Valvolene to make sure there were no leaks - all is good, it was probably from the AC and all systems are go.

On Sunday morning, I was on the road at 7:00 am and pulled into Bob’s driveway at 3:00 pm. The drive was easy and uneventful with about a half hour of fairly heavy rain at the Minnesota/Iowa border.  

It was so good to get hugs from Bob and Penny and catch up on the last year and a half - Thanksgiving, 2019 was the last time we saw each other and we had lots of catching up to do. We had a delicious dinner with salad from Penny’s garden.

Today was a busy one and we were on the go the entire day. We packed sandwiches and headed out to Lake Lotawana for a boat ride. We no more than left the dock when we were pelted with huge raindrops until we got to the other side of the lake and then we had a break so Bob could cast his fishing pole a few times. It wasn’t long and there was another huge gray cloud overhead, so we gave up on having a boat ride.

Bob & Penny

Ashley and Amber’s Lake House

My nieces, Stella and Ashley and her son Oliver came by this afternoon for a short visit and it was sure nice to see them again.

Ashley and Oliver - he loves Gigi’s garden.

The best news of the day came this evening when I learned that my niece, Monica and her husband Loren are expecting their first child in November.  I am so happy for them!  This is their announcement:

Thursday, May 20, 2021

Thursday, May 20

It’s been a busy week, mostly checking off items on my list for my upcoming road trip. First was an oil change and then I had to get some short pants as I’m heading to OK, AR, and MO where it is warmer and more humid than here. My first stop was Kohl’s where I learned that masks are now optional but encouraged and the dressing rooms were not open. I then headed to the outlet mall and was able to find some good sales and pants that fit well at Chico’s. Today, I realized that my car is also due for a tire rotation and I managed to get an appointment for tomorrow morning.

I’ve gotten a couple of good walks in but the last two days have been rainy. Today, every time Mavis and I went out for a walk it started to rain, so I probably haven’t even got 2 miles in today.

We went to the monthly birthday party in the club room this afternoon and I met a couple more residents that I hadn’t met before. It’s nice to sit and chat with several people, although very few come to the events. 

Sunday, May 16, 2021

Sunday, May 16, 2021

This week’s big event was a two-hour drive to Ladysmith, WI for a meet up with Jim and Sue who also drove about the same distance. We met at the Pickled Gill on the north side of town and had some lunch - a delicious Blue Gill fish fry. The reviews of the fish were excellent so I had to try it and it lived up to its name. After lunch and a lengthy conversation, we went to the Flambeau Reclaimed Mine for a hike and more conversation. After all, it has been two years since we have seen each other, but have talked several times since then. A lot has happened and we had a lot to talk about.  

On my way out of town, heading home, I hadn’t even gotten out of the city limits when this guy crossed my path. What a sight!

Norah was having a sleepover with me this weekend, so I went to pick her up yesterday afternoon and we had a great afternoon and evening. They are all so mellow and cooperative on their own - get the three together and the sibling rivalry comes into play. 

We made brownies this morning to take to her house for dessert, walked Frisco, met Mavis in the park and walked with her, played Frisbee, played Barbies, made roses out of clay, and had lots of snacks.  When I took her home, the house was all a flutter of activity: I drank a congratulatory beer with Ben (he just accepted a new job offer), their friend Mary Ann and Poppy arrived for a visit, and Lois and Dennis brought Charlotte home from her sleepover at their house. Ben and Jill thanked us for giving them the opportunity to have some one-on-one time with Camille - something they don’t get to appreciate on a regular basis. Now that the COVID threat is decreased, we can give them more of those opportunities in the future. 

Wednesday, May 12, 2021

Wednesday, May 12, 2021

Wow! It’s been over a week since I last wrote, guess my life has been pretty calm and laid back and there isn’t a lot to write about. Our weather has been nice but it has stayed cool, in the 60° range until today when we hit 70°. The days have been sunny and nice though. Spring plants are sprouting up, the flowering trees are in bloom, and there are colorful bursts of tulips and daffodils scattered here and there.

Mother’s Day was nice, starting with a phone call from Pat and finishing up with a walk in the park with Camille (she had a sleepover on Saturday night), and a trip to the playground with Ben and the girls. We played basketball, frisbee, and softball for a couple of hours and it was fun but it tired me out.

This week, there has been a Resident’s meeting where we finalized our list of improvements that we would like to see the management take: safety issues, security issues, unauthorized people entering the building, and handicapped access were the primary issues.  They will be presented to management by several volunteers.  We also had a presentation on Tuesday by the local police department and it was nice to hear what they had to say. First - West St Paul is a very safe and low crime city (once the retail theft (nearby Robert Street gets hit hard) statistics are removed. They gave us some suggestions about what we could do to improve the security and safety of our building such as not allowing piggy back entries to either the building entrances or the garage.  It was suggested that management increase the number of cameras in the building and have them monitored by the security staff and also that they put signage outside the building stating that cameras are in use to discourage bad guys from entering.  All in all, I felt it was a beneficial meeting.

I finished crocheting Norah’s summery cardigan and delivered it to her this week.  It turned out cute!

The pattern/my finished product

Tuesday, May 4, 2021

Monday, May 3, 2021

Tom had a nice weather day for his last day here and we walked to Thompson Park in the morning and spent the rest of the day doing laundry and getting ready for his departure. I took him to the airport around 5:00 and heard from him around 8:30 that he had arrived.  We had a nice time while he was here, too bad the weather wasn’t better. I guess it was typical for Minnesota though.

Mavis joined me for dinner on Friday night as I had 2 steaks thawed out as she is still recovering from a recent surgery - probably not feeling much like cooking. I know that top sirloin can be tough but the flavor is usually good and these sirloins were tough.  I’m going to stick to tenderloin and ribeye in the future.

The girls had dress-up day on Friday and Ben shared this photo. I immediately recognized Charlotte’s shirt as one that had belonged to me back in the 70s and I had passed it on to Ben. It brought back memories of my hippie dippy days. 

The cost of groceries has sure increased - Tom and I both spent about $140 this week and I saw a clip on the news last night about the increased cost of groceries.  I spend almost as much on groceries for myself as what I used to spend for both Mike and I.  I know there are ways that I could save some $$$ but I just go about buying whatever I want.

It is Garage Sale season again! Frisco and I spent a couple of hours driving around and stopping at sales on Saturday morning.  I bought a ‘string of pearls’ plant and a ceramic planter pot. My collection of plants is growing. 

I caught up on phone calls on Sunday and did some research for RV Parks for Tom and I in early June.  Every campground at every National, State, and County Park that I checked was fully booked on every weekend.  I have a feeling that this was caused by the increase in RV sales during Covid, as RV Travel has reported that an additional 500,000 plus RVs were sold last year. Also, I think people panicked and booked as many reservations as they could, just in case.  It will be interesting to see how things go for for Tom this summer - I hope to meet up with him at least a couple of times.