Tuesday, November 19, 2019

Projects Galore!

Bob and I have been so busy over the last week and a half. We attended the Manager’s Party last Tuesday with hundreds of other people. It was a beautiful evening; we sat with a group of friends and listened to the live band and had a meal and drinks. We even danced!

On Thursday I painted the bedroom a soft gray color, but the room is not finished so I’ll wait to show you pictures when it is done. Bob is painting the dressers and I will be putting up new curtains as well to bring a little color into a very white-looking room. I will show you the headboard I’ve been working on, though. We bought it at a thrift shop for $10; it was solid cherry but was a little dinged up. I painted much of it a nice turquoise color and then distressed it and added an antiquing glaze and I’m thrilled with the way it came out. I have plans to make some coordinating pillows so please don’t judge me on the sad ones you see here.
I spent much of Friday weaving up samples for the class I’ll be teaching in January. Aren’t these tiny rigid heddles cute? They are made by Handywoman and are only $7 each, making it a very affordable  way to give weaving a try.
Later on Friday I joined a painting class and had a lot of fun with my friend, Marie, who is in choir with me. I’ve signed up for another class in January and am looking forward to it.
Last spring we had the AC and furnace replaced with a split system. Unfortunately the one in my weaving room had to be located in a very awkward spot and it really bothered me, so my wonderful husband built a cabinet to cover it and center it over the door. I think it came out great, don’t you?
Today we had a bit of a setback in our projects. We were all set to install a new laminate vinyl flooring in the weaving room and when Bob ripped up part of the carpet he found that the floor is really not level. This is not good. We’ll have to see if we can have someone level it out for us before we can proceed with the floor installation. Which means the room will have to be EMPTY and there’s not a lot of places I can put my stuff. We’ll have to move everything to the living room, I guess, while the floor is being leveled. We had hoped we could just work section by section when laying the laminate but to get the floor level we can’t do it that way. Ah well...

Saturday, November 9, 2019

What’s Up?

Where has the time gone? Let’s catch up, shall we? Halloween is fairly quiet at an over-55 community, as you may imagine. No trick-or-treaters at the door! The park does put on a party for those who are interested but Bob and I aren’t really party people. We did, however, enter Auggie in the Halloween Pet Parade and he went as a taco, courtesy of his friend Tucker who gave him the costume.
Next to Auggie is another taco (or taquito, since he’s quite a bit smaller) named Willie. And they are facing off with the Mariachi band. Such fun! Auggie loves dressing up and is a real ham.

My photosensitivity lasted for over a week following my eye surgery but a follow up visit with the retinal specialist showed that my vision in that eye is gradually improving. It feels fine now and I have no restrictions on activities so I have returned to the gym. It feels good to get back on the treadmill and the bike.
While I was staying inside to avoid the sun I was able to do a little knitting and I made this gnome.
Every home needs a gnome, don’t you think? He looks good next to my Dala horse.

I had a meeting with the activities director here at the park and I was given approval to teach a band weaving class in January. I’m looking forward to it. There was a lot of interest when I demonstrated weaving last year so I hope I get some students.

Take a look at the new dishwasher Bob installed.
It’s a beauty, and works well. We are also working hard on the bedroom; I painted the walls on Thursday and Bob will be installing an updated ceiling fan and will paint the dressers. I’m still working on the design and we’ll most likely put shelves up, too. Photos to follow as it all comes together.

Activities have started and I’m busy with exercise, choir, Bible study, and Fiber Arts. It’s a good kind of busy and I’m slipping right back into a schedule. Today Bob and I went to Phoenix to a Scandinavian Festival and then to the Container Store. Afterwards we found a great little place to eat called the Green New American Restaurant.
Everything they serve is whole food plant based and it was yummy. Bob loved his Po Boy sandwich and I had an Indian rice bowl.

Until next time!

Saturday, October 26, 2019

First Week in Mesa

Well. We have had a very busy week. We arrived on Saturday the 19th and immediately started transferring food from the motorhome (parked next door) to the house. We got the refrigerator and freezer contents transferred, then the canned goods, teas/coffee, spices, and baking supplies. It took all afternoon. We made up the bed and called it done for the day.

On Sunday we moved over all of our clothes, and on Monday we got books and the craft closet. We discovered when we arrived that our AC wasn’t working, but fortunately the temperatures stayed under 85 and got cool at night so we were fine. The repairmen came on Tuesday and fixed everything so we are nice and cool.

On Monday I went to see a local retinal specialist to address my retinal wrinkle in my left eye. And I had surgery to remove the wrinkle on Thursday, so that’s behind me. The procedure wasn’t nearly as bad as I expected it to be; as I write this it is Saturday evening and my eye feels pretty good. They sure used some heavy duty dilation drops because that eye is still dilated but hopefully I’ll be able to go out in the sun in another day or two. The blurriness will take a while to resolve, though, and I have two kinds of eye drops to use four times a day. So my hopes of having the bedroom all painted this week have flown out the window. Maybe next week I’ll be able to paint.

Bob has been busy. Apart from getting the RV ready for storage he has installed a new outlet in the cabinet next to the sink in preparation for our new dishwasher (yay!) that has already been delivered. Hopefully it will be in sometime this week but we are still waiting for the cord to arrive.

So we are starting to feel settled, and hopefully next week will be much easier!

Friday, October 18, 2019

Tucson, AZ

Bob and I drove from Deming, NM to Tucson on Wednesday, entering AZ and changing time zones.
This time of year Arizona is three hours behind the east coast (where most of our family is,) so we had to adjust our internal clocks one more time. The good thing, though, is that Arizona does not change clocks so on November 3rd when the rest of the US “falls back” we won’t have to. At that time we’ll only be 2 hours behind the east coast.

We love to stop and visit with our friends Chuck and Linda who winter in Tucson and we’ve been having so much fun. While Bob and Chuck focused on a building project, Linda and I spent Thursday making the rounds of fabric, cross stitch, and yarn shops. I was able to get supplies for several projects that I’ll work on this winter.
This sign was in one of the yarn shops and gave me a chuckle.

On Friday we attempted to go see the largest steam locomotive ever to come to Tucson but the line of cars to drive past it were so long that we gave up and went to lunch.
We heard from someone who parked and tried to walk in to see the train that pedestrians were being turned away. Bummer. But we did find a great little Mexican restaurant for lunch and later went to a yard sale that had hundreds of items for sale. Can’t beat that with a stick!

Linda and I worked on finishing the assembly of her temperature blanket and now she only has to crochet an edge around it.

Tomorrow Bob and I will arrive in Mesa, this ending our transcontinental trip west. There will be lots to do for a few days to settle in but then we’ll be able to relax and start enjoying our Arizona winter.

Tuesday, October 15, 2019

To Deming, NM and Palomas, MX

Bob and I left Santa Fe Monday morning, driving through some beautiful New Mexican landscapes to get to Deming. At one point there was desert to our right and the lush green valley watered by the Rio Grande to our left.
I never tire of looking at the mountains of New Mexico.

Deming itself is not the most picturesque area of the state but it’s a good spot to stay if you are planning to visit your dentist in Mexico. Here we are only about 45 minutes to the border. This time we bypassed the $5 parking and found the free lot right next to it. The US Customs agent had told us about this lot when we were here last time. You have to drive behind the $5 lot, then follow signs to the free lot around the corner. It really wasn’t much farther to walk, either.

Once through the building at the border (you simply walk through, no need to show passports) you will see the Pink Store ahead on your left.
Turn left right before the Pink Store and you see the dentist on your right.
Easy peasy! Bob had his teeth cleaned for $40 and I had a cleaning, x-rays, and a filling for $160. I’ll need a new crown in the spring when we come through again.

We had lunch at the restaurant in the Pink Store and had fun shopping around. Then we headed back to the States, walking through Customs. This time of year there were no lines for Customs at all but in the winter there can be lines.

On Wednesday we head to Tucson where we’ll spend three days with our friends Chuck and Linda.

Sunday, October 13, 2019

Thursday to Sunday in Santa Fe, NM

Bob and I have been busy here in Santa Fe the last few days. On Thursday we went to the Plaza to walk around. Unfortunately the Palace of the Governors was being renovated so we couldn’t walk through it this time (we did take the tour three years ago and it was wonderful) but there was so much to see that it didn’t ruin our day.
This area is full of shops and restaurants and we enjoyed walking around and talking with people.

On Friday the weather was a bit cooler and we decided to stay in. Bob replaced our water pump because it was not pumping properly, and then spent a lot of time adjusting it so that our water temperature would not fluctuate during a shower. Success! It’s so good to be married to a handy guy.

I worked for hours on my current cross stitch project, the skirt of a half doll pincushion. Here’s the doll part and what I’ve done on the skirt.
I’d hoped to finish it before we got to Mesa but it may have to wait until we get settled.

On Saturday Santa Fe has a farmers market by the railroad tracks. We visited it three years ago but it has grown since then. We were lucky to find a parking spot, it was so crowded. There were musicians  playing music and all kinds of vendors were selling fruits and vegetables, yarn, handmade craft items,  and honey. A fellow was roasting hot peppers and it was interesting to see how he did it.There were even some folks from the local Raptor Center with an owl and a hawk.

On Sunday Bob and I went to the Museum of Spanish Colonial Art.the only museum in the country dedicated to exhibiting and interpreting the art of the Spanish colonial period with a focus on New Mexico.

It’s a small museum, set in a Spanish-Pueblo Revival-style building, and boasts over 3700 pieces.
We were amazed at the art created by children in the children’s room.
This Nativity was carved by Roberto Barela, age 14, from Rancho de Taos, NM.

Outside the museum there is a Mexican colonial house built in 1780, constructed with 300 pound Mexican pine planks using mortise and tenon joinery. The carvings on it were amazing.
Tomorrow we head to Deming, NM.

Wednesday, October 9, 2019

Santa Fe, NM

So what have we been up to? Our drive from Questa to Santa Fe was along a beautiful road that followed the Rio Grande. New Mexico is one of our favorite states to visit because of the amazing scenery that greets you at every turn.

On Tuesday Bob and I made the rounds of some of the many antique stores in Santa Fe. When we were here three years ago there were four antique shops and now there are more than a dozen. We found a light fixture for our little house in Mesa and a small piece of jewelry for me.

On Wednesday we revisited one of our favorite museums here: the International Folk Museum, which is the largest museum of its kind in the world. The weather couldn’t have been nicer, too.
We were amazed at how many new exhibits there were, as well as some of our favorite pieces.
Huichol yarn painting, which is made by coating a piece of plywood with beeswax. Yarn is then pressed into place. Above the yarn painting is a row of cut tin pieces.
I love the vibrant colors in this Navajo rug
Christening, by Ocotlan de Morelos, a diorama that contains a myriad of ceramic figures becoming smaller in scale towards the back.
A gender, aka a Javanese metallophone
An exhibit featuring the works of Alexander Girard was fascinating and included hand printed fabrics and wallpapers
The Trash Loom by Aymar Ccopacatty. This giant loom uses shrink wrap as warp and plastic shopping bags as weft, and was designed to spotlight the throwaway society in which we live.

We came away from the museum with so many ideas of future projects. It was truly inspirational.