We Went to Brownsville Texas today to the Charro Days Fiesta Parade….

 

Today, the weather was really cold…lol..at least for South Texas.  lol.  We had several warm days this week, it reached mid 70’s.  It felt so so good.  Larry and Cici invited us to go to Brownsville to the Charro Days Fiesta Parade.  We decided to go instead of going to Progresso.

So we also decided to go to our other friends, Cheryl and Linda, (sisters), and install their new TV on Friday instead of Saturday.  They live at Tropic Winds which is by the Airport only about a mile away.  In the summer, they  live near Spring Valley Il.  which is near our home.  They are friends of our daughter Tammys.  Cheryl bought a new flat screen tv and need Rich to install it.  We drove up to their house and Rich installed the TV above their fireplace.   We had a nice visit with them and came home after dark.

So this morning we got up and Rich fixed breakfast.  Bacon, Eggs and toast….He makes breakfast most of the time.  lol   We walked over to Cicis, and left around 10 am.  The temperature was horrible.  We wore winter coats and brought umbrellas as rain was predicted.  Brownsville was only an hour away or less.  We were able to park about 3 blocks away.   They had rows and rows of chairs lining the streets.  They went in both directions for blocks.   They were rented for $3 a chair.  Now figure that up.   A nice little tidy sum, I believe.  lol.  After we picked out our chairs, we went into the nearest restaurant and had a light lunch.  It was so cold outside already.  Finally at 12:30 the parade started.

The parade has been celebrated since 1937.  Brownsville residents and visitors dress in the traditional costumes of Mexico and honor the Mexican cowboys — the Charros — who were heroes of the borderlands.   Charro Days  celebrate what made Brownsville unique: Its location on the border with Mexico and the rich cultural heritage enjoyed by Brownsville’s residents.  Over the years, Brownsville’s sister city of Matamoros has always been a key participant with Fiestas Mexicanas. In years gone by, international bridges were open during Charro Days, allowing family and friends to share the festivities. Even today, ties between the sister cities are celebrated each year with “Hands Across the Bridge”. In this ceremony of friendship, the mayors of Brownsville and Matamoros meet to officially began the celebrations.

The parade was full of floats with Mexican music,  live musicians and dancing lady’s,  all dressed in the traditional beautiful costumes.  Full of color and glitter.

They also had 2 floats from Adult Day Care Centers, with their clients on the float dressed in costume and waving.

Their were many dancing Horses and others, just so beautiful.  Also some cowboys throwing their lassos and jumping through the loops.  Very Cool to watch…..

Several floats were from Matamoros Mexico, right across the Rio Grande. There were a huge display of Border Patrol agents.   Many of the cars and truck and Many of the agents walking the parade route.  They also had some of them on horses.

The Shriners Club were their and put on a nice display.

11040010_10203589589928013_1059076831_n

Also some Harleys were their.  Some dressers and 3 wheelers.   Really nice……So finally it was after 2:30, it was raining.  We had the umbrellas out, and we were so so cold and wet.  We decided to leave after we seen #109 float.   They were still coming down the road.  Really a long parade.  So after a stop at Harbor Freight, we arrived home around 4:30.

I would like to give you an Update on our Girls, staying in the Park.  Denim and Diamonds.   Georgina and Jami were Awarded the River Grand Valleys Best Group of the Year 2015.   They had their picture on the front page of the Winter Texan last Thursday.

We put the front page on the Bulletin Board in the Office and Congratulated them.  They have been trying so hard to build their performance and they sure are.  They have been a great success, due to some pretty hard work.  They will be performing in Branson this summer, so if you happen to go, look for them as the duo or separately.  Georgina plays at the Uptown.  We are all proud to have them staying in our park.  We will be going to Tropic Winds on March 13th, to see them again.

Well tomorrow we will go to Progresso to do a little shopping…lol..(little white pills)….lol…The weather is suppose to be back in the 70’s…..Hate these waves of cold but, still better than up north.  I watch the weather from home and just shudder……..

“Brrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr”

 

 

Advertisements

Busy Week…..Craft Sale and Table Showing our Ribbon Winning WoodCarvings….

 

This week has been a fairly busy week.  Monday at the office we had to get the invitations out for our Appreciation Dinner for today (sunday).  The owner in Arizona had decided to treat all the residents to a dinner.  Our property managers were cooking, delivering and serving the meal.  The managers here, Debbie and Rick, only had to plan, organize and have the hall ready for the food when they came.  So last Monday we had to print over 300 invitations and stuff them all in the mail boxes.   All the residents had to sign up at the activity office for the early sitting….11:30….or the later sitting…..1:30…..   All of the employees and the Workampers were required to work with the setting up of the tables and serving the meal.   So we new it would be a busy weekend.

Also on Saturday, yesterday, was also the craft sale.  I wanted to have a table and display my bricks.  So all week I have been busy finishing the ones I had started.  I ended up with around 12 of them. I also experimented with putting gems around 2 clay flowerpot rims and grouted them.  They turned out really nice.  Friday the wind started up and became stronger and stronger.  The wind was over 30 miles an hour sustained, with gust over 40.   We have had a 12 x 12 awning by the trailer.  It has blown over so many times.   We keep putting it back up.  the frame around the top was so bent out of shape, Rich got 2 lengths of PVC pipe to support it.  It has been strapped down on all 4 corners.  All my craft stuff has been under the canopy along with my tables.   Well Friday nite it finally bite the dust…..Hahaha….Its last Hurrah…..I came home from the store and 1 leg had been twisted off of the frame….I put it back and readjusted the straps.  Several hours later 2 legs gave out…..Now it was barely standing on 2 legs…..So at last we let it rest…..lol….Down it came….Its life is at an end….Oh Well…

So Saturday morning I climbed under to get the rest of my bricks out and found that 2 had hit the concrete.   One survived but the other has some shattered pieces.   Now I will have to do some repair work.  So I brought all my bricks up to the hall for the craft sale and had a good time….I sold 4.  That is really pretty good as the sale was only for 2 hours.

We also had a display table of the Eastgate Woodcarvers.  We had a Woodcarvers Show in town several weeks ago, and our club entered 4 items and we all won Blue Ribbons…..EVEN ME…..lol….Imagine that.

I had made a set of intertwining hearts….In the Picture you can see the block of wood I started with and then the finished hearts.  The next picture is Chip carving on a cross, also another beginner.

Then Roxy an established carver has a heart Hair Pin, and a Whale riding a wave…

Next we have the best piece….A Woodpecker on a tree stump…Carved by Al Lingreen our Teacher.   He Won Peoples Choice…..

Heres some other items carved by Barb….I love her Duck Pond, and her paint brushes

So today is Sunday and it was the Appreciation Dinner.  I had wanted to decorate as no one seems to do much of that.   What is the cheapest thing to do?   Of Course Balloons.   lol…….  Debbie bought a big bag of balloons to blow up.  I blew most of them up at home and brought 2 huge garbage bags filled up with balloons on the golf cart up to the hall.  Lynn the Activity girl, met me at the office at 9 so we could get them ready.   We tied them in clusters of 2 apiece to a piece of  yarn to make streamers.   Church was in the hall till 10 am. so after they were done we put balloons at all the windows, at the serving window …..in the entry way….inside and out….lol…..Looked rather nice….Well the Dinner went well……It went off like clock work…..We served Sloppy Joes, Baked Beans, pickles, chips, and cake.  In between the 2 sittings, we had to wash down the tables and set up silverware and cake again.  We served over 300 people….We had the Karaoke couple from the park playing music and singing.. ..Everyone had a good time.    We all cleaned up, put the tables and chairs back in place. and was home before 4:30…..But so so tired  After it was all over, I realized, I didn’t even take any pictures….I was to busy.  Darn………So tomorrow we have the DAY OFF………….YEaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa….

So that was our week…..lol…

We were in a Restaurant last week and seen this Beautiful Table and Flower Arrangement….I thought it was just so SO BEAUTIFUL…..

11006174_10203502293345653_1287235434_n

Something you don’t see up North……………..

 

Boat Trip from Padre Island to Port of Brownsville, Ship Scrapping Yard….

 

 

Today, Rich and I went with Cici and Larry, back to Padre Island again.  This time we are going to take a 4 hour boat ride down to Brownsville, to the Boat Scrapping Yard.  We have been hearing all about this boat ride and about the Navy boats in the yards for Scrapping.  The aircraft carrier that just arrived in January, was the USS. Constellation.

We arrived around 11:15….Their was this cute little shop in Port Isabel with all kinds of Wooden Pelicans outside.  Cici needed one…lol…”YES  needed one”….for the latest craft project.  We stopped and us girls went in…lol…Cici found a really cute Pelican and I found some Bamboo wind chimes really cheap.   I needed some more.  I have nice neighbors. They like chimes….lol…at least so far…. We arrived at the boat dock around 11:45.  We bought our tickets and finally boarded our boat.

 

We were really far back in line, so we just stayed on the main floor instead of going to the top.  It really was the best place to be cause we was able to watch our chef cook our dinner.  The sky was cloudy but it was still a pretty day.  Seen a dolphin but they weren’t very active.  As we cruised towards Brownsville, the cook started the dinner.  In the middle of the boat, he had a propane turkey fryer.  He filled it with water, then put in a huge spice packet.  He added the juice of at least 3 lemons.

Once the water started boiling he put in 5 large ziplock bags of sliced potatoes and some onions.  Later he floated 4 huge bags of corn, and then 4 huge bags of sliced up Brats, then he put everything separately in large stainless serving pans.  After he took out the potatoes, he dumped in huge bags of shrimp and boiled them….

All of this was being done as we cruised through the Port area.

10984881_10203513522426373_1166931340_n

Check out this plate….Potatoes, Brats, Corn, Bun, and Huge Shrimp…We had all the trimmings….seafood sauce or ketchup…whatever needed…and               All the drinks you wanted during the trip…… soda, water or beer….”Lots of beer”..

As we were heading down the channel towards Brownsville the first thing we came upon was the Shrimp Boat Basin….Port of Brownsville is the Shrimp Capital of the world.  The Basin holds around 250 shrimp boats and neighboring Port Isabel has 200 boats.

Most boats are out to sea for 50 to 60 days at a time during peak fishing season.  A boat holds 10,000-20,000 galloons of diesel fuel.  One of the boats in the picture had sunk and was tied to the one next to it.  lol.  Many of them had fallen into derelict stages.   You could see parts of the harbor that were taken care of and parts that was falling apart with time.  We left the basin and went on down to the shipyard.

They looked like huge ships in the distance, like………….. Ghost Ships…………..  But as you cruised closer, you could see they were just huge rusted, empty hulls of steel.  Some still in one piece, many being dismantled and ripped apart piece by piece from bow to stern.  We passed 2 old cruise ships, 1 half ripped apart already. So so sad.  I looked to see if I could find out the names of them but couldn’t, but can you imagine all the good times the people had on them.  The music , the food and the gaiety that rang through their halls.   And above all, if they could talk………The ports that they had visited.

10984765_10203513507666004_2003487718_n

Some cargo ships, but the most impressive was the 3 aircraft carriers.

This is a close up of one of the carriers as it is being ripped apart.  You can see the interior doors that use to hustle and bustle with officers.  It is so sad that these vast ships cannot be saved somehow.  Their is so much history that has happened on these decks.   So many men have lost their lives and so many still live to remember the times on board.  Do a look up on Google on these 3 carriers and you will see some of the events in history that they served in.  Just amazing.

The Port of Brownsville is home to five of the nations largest Ship-breaking companies.  Navy officials recently awarded the nation’s largest ship-breaking contract to a Brownsville company, commissioned to dismantle the USS Constellation which just arrived in January of this year .  This is the third big military ship-breaking contract to come to the port this year.

10979189_10203513522706380_1357098768_n

 The USS Forrestal, the U.S. Navy’s first supercarrier, arrived in Brownsville in February 2014, and  The USS Saratoga, a Lexington-class aircraft carrier, arrived on September 12th 2014. 

When the ships are taken out of commission, they are stripped down of all mechanics and valuables .   They have to be towed to Brownsville and arrive as just a shell of steel.  The companys strip anything else that may be of value and sell it.  They have an Ebay site as well as a local store.  The steel is cut up and recycled to be used again.  There are many more ships in navel graveyards waiting for this same last trip of Death………

 

11009030_10203513523066389_779817559_n

He took us all around the ships and then headed back up the channel.

PortBrownsvilleAerial-300x240

The channel is 17 miles long with a depth of 42 feet.  It is also the largest oil platform production site in America.

We cruised on back up to Port Isabel and cruised around their oil platform.

This platform has been towed in from the ocean for repairs.  The ship is now obsolete and is not used anymore.  It is being stored their for only $6000 a month.  The guide said its been their for around 7 years.  lol  Must be pocket change for them.

10994702_10203513518786282_808746093_n

Then we entered an area where the beautiful homes were located on coves.  Each home had a dock at its back door…..Now how awesome is that…and Expensive?….lol….Finally we headed across the bay to Padre Island.

10917734_10203513516826233_1548247362_n

He made one more stop.  Cruised into the boat channel under the large span of the Causeway Bridge.  Two days after 9/11, a barge hit the bridge and took out a span…..It was kept low profile as it was a bad time in the country and it might be thought of as another attack….but it just was an awful accident. They had the bridge repaired with in several months.

 

Finally we headed back to Dock.  What a GREAT AFTERNOON it had been.  We didn’t have a very good seat to hear the guide on the PA system.  Actually I don’t think anyone did.   Something they need to fix.   We missed a lot of the details, but never the less. I took 118 photos….wow…Its hard to narrow them done to just a few.

10979318_10203512452519626_187379430_n

10967841_10203513520826333_2039703_n

Great Trip.        Great Food.       Wonderful Crew.      Good Company.

 

 

 

Schlitterbahn and Mario…lol..Another Great Evening….& My New Love Seat…

Last nite Rich and I and Cici and Larry took off for South Padre Island.  When Mario had been at East Gate we bought tickets for his Dinner show at Schlitterbahn Resort.  So we left at 4:30 and arrived around 5:30.   Rich and I had been their before scouting it out.  So we drove into to the park.   It is an outdoor Water Park, but is closed down till summer.  It also has a Restaurant and an outdoor entertainment center.  We thought that was were it was as the Restaurant is Open.  A Golf cart Taxi service was their to take the people from the parking lot to the Restaurant.  Then we found out we were at the wrong place.  lol.  Next door is an Indoor Water Park at the Schlitterbahn Resort.  So back in the truck we went.  Larry found a place to park right in front.   And guess who he parked in front of………MARIO…………

10994716_10203486624273936_378274606_n

He loves to play a lot of the oldies from the Rat Pack Days……Frank Sinatra…….hence, his liscence plate.     Rat Pck    

 

We were seated at a table up front with 4 other people.  I might add, they had a Great sense of Humor….We did a lot of visiting and laughing together.  On the menu we had our choice of Garden Salad or Caesar Salad……Chicken Alfredo, Chopped Sirloin, or a Shrimp meal, and then a Brownie with whipped cream for dessert.   It was very filling.   Now our friends were just finishing their meal, and we were the last ones to be served.  I think actually we were forgotten about several times.   Rich and Cici were drinking Margaritas, so they were served some FREE ones…..lol….by the time the evening was over, Rich had 7….and Cici had 3….Good Times….

Mario put on a Great Show as he did before.  I did a Blog on him several blogs ago so I won’t bore you with lots of info this time.  He did some new songs and material as well as some of the same.  It lasted till 9:30….

During the break, Cici and I went Exploring….lol…Gift Shop Stop.   and then the Indoor Water Park.  It is open on weekends and part of it is open to guests at the Resort.  There had been someone swimming when we first came.  If you look close, you will see bar stools where you can sit in the water and be served from the bar….Really cool…So pretty at nite.

They had an Indoor Carousel and some other rides for kids….Now Cici took this pic of me…..For some reason, I look like a Little Person……hahah…..

Also her is a picture of their really cool picnic tables….rugged and beautiful….and a shot of the bar looking toward the wave pool area…..We made it back from our little exploring trip just in time for the show to begin after the break….lol….After the show was done, Mario came by and talked with us a bit.  We had a waitress try to take a picture of us all, but the phone ….DIED…… Oh Well…It was a fun evening, but late……Work in the morning…..lol…but not till 9 am….not bad hours we have.

Also want to tell you about my New Love Seat.  This RV has had the most ….UNCOMFORTABLE….Leather Love Seat.   It is a Futon.  It looks nice but it is not for flopping down and rolling into a ball and watching tv.  I HATE sticking to leather.  It had a short seat depth.  I always sit sideways and put my feet at the other end….My feet kept falling off and I…… STICK…..Ugggggg……………

10961895_10203460424178950_2017652758_n

Last Saturday, we were driving around town and came upon a Second Hand Store.   Now it wasn’t really a store, more like an old storage building with a sign out front.  We decided to go in,……OH MY……We were greeted by the store owner lady.  “Come on In” she said….It was a little room …one lane walking area….In that room was her, the momma….grandma holding a baby, and 5 year old little girl, and a boy about 12…..I think they all just lived their….She said we could look around and back by the corner was another door.   We could go on back and look around…….Well of course, back we went……Through the door…..It reminded me of on those doors people go in…….and never come out…….lol…….Surprisingly their was a dim light.  Stuff everywhere.  No Organization…..furniture….stuff from close outs I guess.  One wall of I think at least 50 toilets seats still in pkgs…..lol…..This was nothing but an OLD old warehouse full of STUFF…..Their was another room off to the side….We wedged our way over to it.  Their was this Love seat that looked rather nice, but it was dark in side.   The husband now arrived.  I asked about it.  He opened the slidding board warehouse door to get some light….lol…..No Light bulbs I guess….Their was a matching sofa.  It was in excellent shape….surprisingly….lol….$199 for both, but he would deal….$99 for just the Love Seat.   lol    I think NOT….Finally made a deal with him…..$65 for trade with mine and delivery…..He would help put it through the door…..lol….My biggest worry…

So back home we went.  First he took out the Passenger seat.   Now the Leather Love Seat.  It was screwed into the slide.  Oh boy, what a job.  First took off the back…Then the Seat…..Then found 9 screws that were at least 5″ long….some came out easy…some hard….some not at all…So Rich finally RIPPED it out….Got it out the door, and the guy pulls up with the new Love Seat.   Rich and him brought it in and it actually fit beautifully through the door.  So It all worked out
10934319_10203464424158947_966393601_n

Im loving it…It is so soft…We had to work on the legs some as it is on the slide and we needed to put blocks on the front to build it up even.  But it is perfect for me….I can bounce and curl up and watch tv and nap at the same time….lol…

10967042_10203486628034030_699172566_n

One final picture…..As Cici and I were walking around these beautiful bottles caught our eye.   They were sitting on the bar…..Gorgeous aren’t they…..

 

Our Girls At East Gate RV Park….Denim and Diamonds

 

Tonite was such a fun nite….Our Girls from the park, Denim and Diamonds performed.  They performed music from the 30’s 40’s 50’s and 60’s.

10958782_10203456196073250_566696687_n

The duo is comprised of Georgina Holiday and Jami Asselin.  The came to our park in December wanting to bring in their Coleman popup camper, after the 1st of the year.  They were new to the Winter Texan circuit and was trying to add some more performances to their tour of the Winter Texan Parks.  Debbie and Rick were kind enough to give them a spot as close to the shower room as possible and in between 2 other campers to give them protection from the wind.  Jami arrived with her husband first and Georgina arrived later.  We’ve have all felt so bad for them staying many cold nites in a pop up.  They say it is plenty warm but the conveniences are just not their as we have in our RVs.  They have spent plenty of time in the halls practicing and we have gotten to know them.  The are so full of fun, and excitement.  I think most all of us admire their determination to follow their dream. We were so excited to finally see their show.

10841290_10203455847584538_27492180_n

We had our friends from Tropic Winds come, Cheryl and Linda, and they brought their neighbors, who were actually from Norway.   Cheryl and Linda are actually from back home.  Seatonville.  They are good friends with our daughter Tammy.  They use to work with her.  We arrived early and got front row seats.  Finally at 7 the show started.  They sang a lot of the oldies.  OMG.  What a voice they both had.

 

Georgiana sang most of the songs and Jami sang harmony.  They Jami sang some of her own.  They sang oldies from Patti Page, Brenda Lee, and Anne Murray.  Jami did some wonderful Tanya Tucker. 

At one point they went out and picked on our neighbor Mike and brought him up on stage.  They tried to get him to dance….lol….He had a problem getting the beat…lol…But we all got a GOOD LAUGH ,…..even his wife LauriBeth…

We had a short break and continued on with the show.  The girls kept encouraging dancing.  Finally they called out to the line dancers to come up and they did a song line dancing.

10955163_10205370153668287_8960396074241548187_n

And they the most Embarrassing thing happened.  “They Came After Me”……They made me come up and stage and sit on a stool….I put on sunglasses and they put a feather Boa around my neck….So so embarrassed…lol…Finally they starting singing and wanted me to sing the chorus.  Hahaha….I don’t even remember what it was, other than it was some kind of Doo Wop  song……Finally at last it was over….Whew….back to my seat I went…..

They sang to the Veterans, Anniversary’s and to all the February Birthdays.  The most moving song for me was their Rendition of “Wings Beneath My Wings”  So beautiful.  The show was finally over and time to go home.  It was a Grand Show.  The audience LOVE THEM….It was a full 2 hours of fun and Entertainment.

These girls come from Branson.  Georgina performs regularly at Jack B. Goodes, Uptown Café along with Mario, who was here 2 weeks ago.  She will be performing next summer in a Tribute to Anne Murray and Jackson Brown, along with her husband.  She has been awarded the BEST FEMALE ARTIST 2 years in a row in Branson.   Now that is an Honor.

Jami also has been performing in Branson on Stage.  She has been performing since she was 8 years old.  She loves to sing Tanya Tucker.  She has a CD that was on the Charts for 3 weeks.  She may be starring with Georgina this summer at the Uptown Café.

10966544_10203455849824594_824465965_n

So if your ever in Branson…….Look up these Girls…..They are so Talented….You won’t be sorry…..

Another week over……Another week closer to summer…..Could be 80 by Sunday….So they say….

But after awhile ,  Should you really trust the weatherman?