Wednesday, November 14, 2018

The Deck Progresses

Work on the deck has been slower than anticipated but Bob is pushing onward and it is looking good. The manufactured decking material is a bit fiddly. Plus, every few minutes a passer-by stops to comment, ask questions, or simply strike up a conversation. While it is nice to have such a friendly park, this is not exactly conducive to productivity. It’s a good thing we are retired!
As you can see, Auggie and I are already sitting on it!

The other project that is continuing is my work on my grandson’s baby blanket. I finished warping this week and have started weaving. I think it’s looking quite nice! The warp and weft is 8/4 cotton and the draft is from Tom Knisely’s book, Handwoven Blankets.
I have to say that I love this loom. I’m weaving on my Big Macomber loom as I go along I’m learning just how well it works. This is truly a workhorse of a loom and it is a joy to use. 

The park has had electrical power outages this week as workmen upgrade the electrical service. Because of the outages, Bob and I went antique shopping today to see if we could find a kitchen table  that we like better than the one we have been using. We haven’t found one yet but it was sure fun to look!

I’ll report back with more deck photos as the project progresses.

Friday, November 2, 2018

The Loom Room is Finished

Bob and I have been settling into our little park model home. There has been so much to do! We joined Costco for the first time and have been exploring what this store can do for us.  I got my flu shot there, and today got passport photos from Costco’s photo department. Apparently, this is the place with the best prices for things like that.

I checked with the Activities Department here about when the Fiber Arts group was starting up, and was told that there was no coordinator so the group was cancelled. “I’ll do it!” I immediately responded, so now I am the group coordinator. I really don’t think there’s much to do as coordinator of this group other than be the official contact person. I can handle that.

My big project so far has been the organization of my loom room. Bob and I went to Lowe’s yesterday and purchased 4 eight foot long wire shelves, plus the upright holder thingies and metal arms that hold the shelves. Bob had them up in no time, and then it was my turn. We had gone to the Container Store for bins, so all I had to do was place like things together. Here are photos of how it came out.

Bob’s plans for a deck were signed off on by the manager so that is our next big project. Hopefully it will all come together quickly so we can sit around on our deck all day. Ha! Ha! That’s not going to happen because after the deck will be the painting of the bedroom and remodeling the bathroom.

Sunday, October 21, 2018

We Made it to Mesa

After 12 days of being on the road, 3 time changes, and countless storms we finally have made it to our little park model in Mesa, AZ. We left Tucson at about 10:00 after visiting on Chuck and Linda’s deck with a morning cuppa. Even though it only takes about 90 minutes by car, the trip is a little longer by motorhome because we avoid side roads and because we don’t drive as fast. But soon we were pulling in and parked in the open site right next to our house. We were welcomed by our neighbors and friends with hugs; a few have been here all summer and are starved for new faces. The campground is so much quieter than it will be in just a few weeks when the snowbirds all return.

Then the work began! I was surprised at how little dust there was since it accumulates so quickly when we live there, but everything still needed dusting. And then everything had to come out of the coach: all food in the refrigerator and cabinets, drawers needed to be emptied, cleaning supplies, my fiber closet full of yarn, looms and loom parts, everything in the bathroom, the list goes on and on. One good thing is that I now have duplicates of kitchen drawer stuff, baking pans, cookware, and the like, so we won’t have to move those things back and forth.

We worked for hours yesterday, and when we couldn’t work anymore we just crashed. Today we hope to get the rest of it and it will be a long day. And THEN, we will be able to relax and plan our renovation projects for the winter. But the skies are blue, the weather is warm, and it’s great to be here.

Saturday, October 20, 2018

On to Tucson

Bob and I had a lovely visit with our friend Joan and her friend Geri who was visiting from California. We ate at Hacienda de la Mesilla for lunch and had a yummy meal. My portobello fajita was so good! Joan has been very busy sorting through all of her belongings in preparation for an estate sale and putting her house on the market. Such a daunting job! Her friend Ellen, who left right before we arrived, and now Geri are helping her with this task.

I ended up buying her 20” old style Schacht rigid heddle loom with Trestle II stand. I owned one of these looms years ago and have missed it. I look forward to fixing up the brake (it needs new springs,) adding new reeds, and playing with it.

All too soon Bob and I packed up again and drove out of Las Cruces. This area has gotten a lot of rain in the last week or more and the scenery looked much greener than it usually does in the fall.

Even the ocotillos are green

Before long we were in Tucson, AZ where we parked in an RV resort for the night near our friends, Chuck and Linda. We had a great visit with them all afternoon and evening, and went out to dinner with them at Sweet Tomatoes in Tucson. All too soon, however, our “jet lag,” or “road lag” caught up with us. I’m not sure what you call it, but we have changed time zones 3 times now in a little over a week and it’s really hard on our bodies. I feel hungry all the time and tired most of the time. We’ll adjust but we’ve never done a road trip like this so quickly. In some ways I think it’s harder than flying and adjusting 3 hours all at once.

So today is the day we arrive in Mesa! We are very excited to finally make it there. There’s so much to do today and tomorrow: first the drive, then cleaning the house from top to bottom, moving all our things from the motorhome to the house, unpacking and putting things away, then cleaning the rig and taking it to the storage place for the winter. All this has to be done by Monday morning because we have reserved the site next to us for two nights.

We’ll get it done.

Thursday, October 18, 2018

Land of Enchantment

Bob and I have come to a realization that we have seen rain every day in the last 10 out of 11 days. A few snow flakes, too, truth be told. In Vega, TX we saw a brief flurry and we did at our next stop as well, neither accumulating at all. On Tuesday we passed from Texas into one of our favorite states, New Mexico, the Land of Enchantment.
We easily found the town of Vaughn, NM, our planned stop for the night, but were a little confused as to where the RV park was. There are two campgrounds in town but both looked like they had been closed for years with no other RVs present. We chose the one with a slightly better layout and settled in for the night, leaving the campground fee in an envelope in a drop box by the office door. It was a pleasant surprise to find a pretty strong free Wi-Fi signal in the campground, and it was a pretty quiet night.

On Wednesday we saw a bit of sun for part of the trip and enjoyed the NM scenery as we rolled along.
The pretty little town of Carrizozo

We passed White Sands National Monument as the clouds moved back in.

Having spent a winter here a couple of years back, we felt like we were coming home.
We are now tucked up into our campground in Las Cruces and are excited to be visiting with our friend Joan today. Joan has bought a home in Florida and is in the process of readying her Las Cruces home for sale.

Tuesday, October 16, 2018

Vega, TX

We left OKC on Monday morning with the wind blowing the storms away and soon were treated to blue skies. We’ve been through Oklahoma twice before, both times in the Spring, and had to dodge tornadoes each time. This time we got to appreciate Oklahoma’s beauty.

Before long we had passed into a Texas and the landscape changed from farmland to wilder cattle country.
We arrived in Vega mid afternoon and settled in. It is still cold, and the campground owner told be that winters here are “awful.” He was an interesting man with lots of stories about his cats and about the woman who lost her arm trying to keep her female dog from being assaulted by a pack of male dogs. Suddenly he interrupted himself. “Do you like peppers?” he asked me. I said I did and he pointed to some jalapeƱos on the counter and told me to take some. I replied I could use one or two and he said, “How about five? I picked them this morning, the last of the season, right before that sleet hit.”

I guess I’ll be making salsa!

Monday, October 15, 2018

Oklahoma City

Bob and I took a much needed break from daily driving to linger in Oklahoma City for an extra day. What a nice feeling to be able to lounge in the morning rather than to pack up and go. There is a reason for our hurry, however. Having waited around to be a part of our grandson’s birth (and with no regrets at having done so!) we now are facing the possibility of winter weather as we cross the lower plains states and travel across the mountains of New Mexico. We want to be back in Mesa before it becomes much more difficult to travel. When we awoke this morning the temperature was a cool 36 degrees and the wind made it feel even colder.

Yesterday was fun-day, though, and we visited the National Park Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum here in OKC.
This is the largest cowboy museum in the world and features iconic Western artists such as Remington and Russell, a Native American Gallery, a replica frontier town, a rodeo gallery, and a gallery dedicated to cowboys in film. Here are some of my favorite images.
The original and largest copy of the sculpture, The End of the Trail, by James Earle Fraser
Grand Canyon, Kaibab Trail by Clark Hulings, 1873
Abraham Lincoln was considered a “western” president, signing the Homestead Act in May of 1862, the College Land Grant Act of July, 1862, and the Railroad Land Grant Acts of 1862 and 1864.
Prosperity Junction depicts a late 18th century western town at dusk.
ThIs triptych is one of six painted by Wilson Hurley which are the largest in the world.
This sculpture is called Canyon Princess, by Gerald Balciar
Today we are back on the road and headed for Vega, Texas for the night. The tape that Bob put on the side view mirror is not working very well but since it is a mirror with two sections he is able to use the bottom mirror and get by until a better fix can be found.