Granddaughter’s Graduation’s…..

Last May we headed back home to Illinois for the 2 Granddaughter’s Graduation’s. Cassidy was graduating 8th grade and little Carly, Kindergarten. We decided to just drive the car and leave the Motor Home in Texas. It would be cheaper. Now what about the cat. He has never been in the car. When we were in Adventureland in Iowa, we took him home in the truck. We almost gave him a heart attack, and that was only 4 hours. Now were talking 24 hours if you drive it straight through. We couldn’t ask anyone to take care of him for several weeks, so we decided Kitty was going on a road trip. Rich said he’s never to old to learn. I bought him a soft sided zip up carrier. I laid it open for several days and he crawled in and laid in it. So maybe it will work??? But he is an old man, set in his ways. He doesn’t like change. So finally the day came.

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We put the back seats down so he had the whole back. Put his kitty litter, food and water in the back on a blanket. His carrier was in the middle so he could see between the seats. He hated when I carried him to the car, he meowed for the first half hour. Finally we went through the Border Check point at Falfurrias. We kept him in until then because you just never know what may happen their. The Border Patrol agents have dogs that sniff every car. Not that we have a reason to worry…..lol…but you never know. Then we unzipped him. He actually did wonderful. He adapted so well to the car. He roamed at first, checking everything out. But he was so good. We pretty much drove straight through stopping only to sleep a few hours. About 2 hours from home in Lincoln Illinois is a Bonanza Restaurant.

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Its an old time favorite of ours. We try to stop if the timing is right. This one is a franchise but they have kept the menu the same. They have a wonderful salad bar.

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I always get my favorite…..Sirloin Tips with grilled mushrooms and onions.….Yum Yum…Theirs nothing like it.

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Finally we arrived and little Carly was so excited to see us. She had her fairy outfit on. She went and posed in the family tree. That nite Austin had a Softball game.

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We went to Granville to watch him play. Of course we also had to visit Scott and Brandy’s bar One Paw’z Pub.

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Scott singing Karaoke

Finally Graduation came for Carly. Her year in Kindergarten is over. On to 1st Grade.

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Carly, 1st row on far right. Jacob, Carly’s cousin in right next to her.

They were using the Auditorium at Putnam Co. High for the kids. Granville has 3 classes of Kindergarten for all of Putnam Co. They were so cute. They sang songs with cute motions. Finally they gave out the diplomas by class.

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After, I gave her a bouquet of flowers. She is now ready for First Grade. Carly is our youngest grandchild. She is sure growing fast. We had a picnic for both girls. Cassidy graduated 8th and will be a Freshman in High School.

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Tammy invited friends and family and had a cake for each. Now Carly was unhappy cause she thought Cassidy’s cake was prettier. She was crying and then she tried to stop but it was so hard for her…..lol…..Finally it was all better.

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They are so cute together…...That is when their not fighting….lol… We have also gotten 2 new grand dogs. Tammy and the Kids got Jazper.

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He is a Silver Lab. Tammy said she can’t even go to the bathroom by herself. Jazper has to come with. lol. Tina, Ed and the kids got Dee Dee last fall.

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She is a small Golden Doodle. She is more laid back that Dexter was. I had a hard time calling her by her name and not Dexter. She looks just like Dex. She loves playing with her kids Miley and Austin. We also have 2 other restaurants that I usually like to eat at when were home…

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Tenderloin…..Smittys Bar in Leonore

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Taco Salad and Homemade Fries…..Igloo, in Peru

I decided to take the kids to Hobby Lobby and buy some fun stuff to do on one of our last days their. Tina said Miley wanted her toes done, so I took her first to the Nail place at the Mall.

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She picked out her polish which was a silver flake. Miley is 9 years old now going on 10. Time to start doing girly stuff with her…..We also went to Bath and Body and picked out some soaps and body splash. We had a good time smelling everything. Then we met Tina with Austin and Carly at Hobby Lobby. We ended up picking up stuff to make Slime and some other things.

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On Monday I went over to spend the day while Tina and Ed worked. We brought all our stuff outside to make the Slime. I’m sure glad we did it outside as it turned out messy with all the glitter. We needed Elmers Glue, Baking Soda, and Contact Lens solution. We also bought glitter. It was fun but the glitter blew everywhere. Before we were done they kept making different batches until the large bottle of Elmers was all gone. And it was the largest bottle they make. Later when Tina came home, we visited for quite awhile. It was very quiet in Mileys room.

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I walked in and her and Carly were putting makeup all over their faces. Such silly girls. Now I’ve mentioned all the grandkids but Cameron. He is the one that is hard to get a picture of. This is a picture of him and his friend Torri in his boat. One of the toys he bought last year.

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You know how that goes…..Men and their toys??? or is it Boys and their toys??? Its all the same. Here is another purchase. He has finally bought the truck he has always wanted.

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Its a Ford!!!!!.…But Grandpa forgave him. It is pretty. But it wasn’t pretty enough.

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He had to go buy new tires and rims. They are nice…but….I guess live and learn…..He’s Happy, and its his money. Finally it was time to head back to Harlingen. We packed up the car, prepared Kitty’s back end. But now we always bring more back so now the car is really filling up.

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Kitty had to explore all the mountains of stuff in the back of the car. He fell asleep on the mountain…..lol…

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As we traveled he was so good. He liked to sleep on the floor with his head buried under the drivers seat between Rich’s legs. When we stopped to gas up or eat, he would just stay wear he was. He never attempted to get out. We drove almost straight through all the way home. We slept for a couple of hours in the car and made it in around 24 hours. Long Long ways………………While we were in Illinois we also worked at the Summer Camp Festival for 6 days as Security Guards. We did this also last year. My next blog will be about Summer Camp..

…..Another memorable experience….

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Ok, So Where is Rich….lol…

Last year after we were done at Adventureland, we came back home and Rich worked the harvest season for a local farmer.  He has helped him before.  But because we arrived on Oct 1 he missed a couple of weeks.  We also had to leave early cause we needed to be in Harlingen by Nov. 1.  So we tossed the whole idea around on how he could work the whole season this year.  The best answer was for him to go up alone and I stay here.  We couldn’t both go as I am working at the theater, and I need to be here by Nov. 1 when the park officially begins the Winter Texan season, and I begin my duties.  If I had went with him for several weeks, and left the motorhome in Texas, we would have had to tie it down to the concrete patio, because of Hurricane season.  We didn’t want to do that.  I realize now after Hurricane Harvey how important that is.  Also what about the cat?  Kitty would probably have a heart attack in the car heading north.  He doesn’t like change….He’s an old man.  lol  Then how would I get Kitty back down, if I took the train back down?  So this was strictly a financial decision.  I stay in Harlingen and keep my job, and Rich drove home and works for the farmer for approximately 8 weeks till harvest is done.  So that is where he is.  He is staying at Scott and Brandys and driving the semi from the fields to the Elevator.wp-1491479408704.jpg

So Rich decided to take my Lumina as I was having problems with it.  About once a week it would not start.  I would call him to come to the Dollar Store or to the Cinemark 10 after work.  He would turn the key and ……BINGO…..It would start.  He said, “How can I fix something that we don’t know what’s broken”.  Well unfortunately he’s right.  So I learned that if it didn’t start, wait 10 minutes and it would.  Now that means I can’t buy any ice cream or popsicles, as I might end up waiting in the parking lot for 10 or more minutes for the car to start……lol…..So we decided he would drive it back and trade it.  He drove it all the way to Illinois, ……No Problem…..Went up to Canada to visit to our Canadian friends Kathy and Glen at their campground…..No Problem…Back home to Illinois…..No Problem….So one morning he decided to use my key instead of his….Guess what????  That was the answer.  He Had a Problem….It is was the coded key.  My key had problems and his did not.  Funny isn’t it.  All over a lousy key.  But before he left, we looked at the web site of a local car dealer we usually go to.  We picked out a car we liked.  I left it up to him to get a good durable car, and trusted his decision.  Well turns out my sister-in-law, Connie, liked the Lumina, so she bought it and Rich bought the Chevy Equinox that we had seen on line.

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I know I’m going to love it.  Rich has really been enjoying it.  He also decided to move up from the ANTIQUE flip phone, to a real …..SMART PHONE….I told Tammy to take him and help him out with a purchase.  He insisted he would not get one if he couldn’t pay cash.  He would NOT do the payment plan on AT&T like the rest of us do.  So Tammy took him to a place that sold refurbished phones and he bought a Motorola for $100.  He now has a new toy…..He has been busy learning.  Tammy and Cameron has taught him so many things.  He’s learning so much on his own.  I was afraid he would get frustrated and go back to the old flip phone.  I know now he won’t.  He is enjoying it.  He has it programed into the Bluetooth in the car, downloaded Pandora, and is now learning about pictures.  His Email is set up, also Google account so he can store pictures in the cloud.  So Far No Facebook.selfie

Here’s his first selfie in the car.  Cameron and him were playing one night when he first got the phone and the car.  Cameron said the were laughing so hard they had tears in their eyes.

The fields were late this year, so he is getting some other things done.  The rental house needed a few things.  We have a new tenant.  Hopefully this one works out.  We haven’t had a whole lot of good luck.  Poor Tina has to take care of them for us.  This last time I posted the house on Craigslist to rent.  Tina had immediate response and was able to rent it fast and choose who she wanted.  So much better than FB sites.  They always had young irresponsible kids wanting to rent.  He also has been doing a little work around our house.  The garage roof has some issues.  Of course he also spends time in Scott and Brandys bar.  “ONE PAWZ PUB”  Taco Mondays and Karaoke on certain Fridays.

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But they finally started a little over a week ago in the fields.  They have more corn this year than soybeans.  They have most of the soybeans done, and were started on the corn.  Now of course it had to rain off and on several days, so that puts everything on hold till the equipment can get back into the fields.  This are a couple of Richs photos with his new phone.  Its quite good.  I’m impressed.  IMG_20170928_143950732.jpg

This is the truck he is driving.  The farmer picks the corn or soybeans and loads the corn from the combine into the farm wagon.  The tractor brings the wagon to the truck on the edge of the road and fills it.  Rich drives the truck into McNabb to the elevator where they unload it.  There the elevator sends it to the dryer and also stores it for the farmer, until it is sold later and trucked to the river and loaded on a barge.  So as it stands now it might be close to Thanksgiving before he’s done.  The farmers goal is to be done by then.  That is rather late, as he was done earlier last year.

So here at the Park, the Winter Texans are beginning to arrive.  Their trickling in, but it wont be long and they will come flying in.  You’ll see many campers and Motorhomes on the highways.  They will be going all over in the Rio Grande Valley.  I gave my notice at Cinemark 10 they other day.  I only have 2 weekends to work.  Its been a good run, but the time has come to be done.  Its time to start thinking about fun things to do this winter.  I’m got many ideas already, so time to begin.  First thing we are having is a Halloween Party.  One of the girls here Paulette, loves Halloween.  Its her favorite Holiday.  So she is decorating and coming up with great ideas for a fun party.  She even found a cool Piñata..FB_IMG_1507928278949.jpg

Look whats going to be in it……….lol…………Its an Adult Piñata…..She even wants us to do Apple Bobbing????   Now just think…..Old People have false teeth…..We might have a tub full of teeth.  The apples will still be floating……hahahaha….Yea,  I’ll let ya know how that turns out….20170101_001600.jpg

I’ll close this time with a photo fromOne Pawz Pub”.  Scott and Brandy’s bar.  Remember last Christmas, Rich was down at 77 flea market by Brownsville and bought a clown skeleton???  We called it Sally.  She road on the back of the golf cart for a couple of weeks.  Well, Sally has taken up drinking at “One Pawz Bar”.  She has perched herself by a table and is looking pretty comfortable.   She brought friends also.  lol

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The Grandkids…..

This year Austin graduated KindergartenHe was really excited.

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They held the graduation in the High School Auditorium.  This was his teacher.  After the ceremony, they went to Spring Valley to the Gold Mine Restaurant that Aunt Connie works at.

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They held a little party for him.  His little Jar is cute.  Tina rolled up $1 bills and tied them like a Diploma.  Put his picture inside and a Graduation Hat on top….Great Idea for any occasion.  We weren’t able to attend it so Tina held a small Party at “Fish and Fun”.  Its a little recreation area with a fishing lake and pool area with 3 different sizes pool.  The lake is lined with houses,  house trailers and camping trailers.  It is only several miles outside McNabb and is Membership only.

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Aunt Beth brought a cake and all the kids went swimming.   I bought him the pump container to fill water balloons.  They all had a good time with that.  Finally got a group picture of them all.

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This was hard.  Cameron didn’t want to cooperate….lol…and then theirs Dexter…

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Austin and Miley have both been involved in Sports this summer.  Miley will be in 3rd grade next year.  She is growing but Austin is growing faster.  Soon, if not already Austin will pass her by.

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Miley has also been involved with the Cheerleaders this year.  They did a performance at a High School game at half time.  She is so tiny and petite, and has been involved in gymnastics since she was 3.  So she can do lots of great moves.

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Here’s the whole family, including Tina, Ed and of course Dexter.  They stopped in Wisconsin Dells on their way up to Wisconsin for their annual fishing trip with Grandpa Dan Dolder. 

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Next we have little Carly.  She was 5 this year.   She is such a “Princess” and she’s so smart.

FB_IMG_1497792040882 She will enter Kindergarten this fall.  This photo is at PreSchool.

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Now this is one of my favorite pictures of her…Her hair is all natural curly and is very hard to control….Pigtails or pony tails are best..

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Her she is sticking her head out of her Mamas new car.  Tammy is in Love…..lol…..with her car….

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Next is her Big Sissy Cassidy….She is 13 this year….Now an “OFFICIAL Teenager”Cassidy went to live with her dad this year.  He lives nearby, and now she’s getting to know her other family which is a good thing.  She spends lots more time with her Grandma and Grandpa.

She comes out to her moms house a lot.  Probably almost every weekend.  So their all working it out.  It’s nice for all of them.  Teen years are tough.  Cassidy will enter 8th grade this fall….Almost High School….

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This is a favorite picture….

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Now for their Big Brother Cameron….He just had his“19th Birthday this month.  We are so proud of him.  This past year he has achieved so much.  Last year in the early spring, he dropped out of High School.  He was so far behind, he would have had to take summer classes, if not another year.  He has struggled all of high school.  He said he was going to get his GED.  We were all skeptical, but he made us all believers.  He enrolled at the Junior College.  He had to take the courses that would build his knowledge in all academic areas up to a certain level, so he could enroll in the GED Class.  He completed them and enrolled in the GED classes.  He finished in Nov and received his GED.  Then, with the help of Uncle Scott, he enrolled in CDL classes at the college and completed them in Feb this year.  Finding a job has been hard as he is only 19 and most company’s wont insure him until he is 21.  But he has found a job with the help of Aunt Tina with AG View FS Fertilizer Company.  He is doing so good and is well liked by the company and all the employees.  As you see the family has been behind him, but only because he has showed so much drive and initiative to complete his studies.  He found his goal to complete the GED and he pushed himself to succeed.  He now gets up everyday on his own, anxious to go to work.  Sometimes he leaves as early as  5:30, and works till 8.  But it is the busy season.  He has come so far this year.

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Scott and Brandy also had a big celebration in their family this year.  Brandy’s daughter Staci, has now graduated also and received her BSN in Nursing.  She will soon be taking the “BIG TEST” to obtain her license and then pick her job to begin her career.  In the mean time, she is helping out at the bar.

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One more photo is my niece Ashley’s little girl, Vivian.  She is Richs sister Connie’s Daughter.  Last year just before we left for AdventureLand, Connie held her Baby Shower.  Little Vivian is growing like a weed and is almost 1……And Guess What…….Vivian will be joined by a new little baby sister or brother this fall.  Exciting news…  The family is growing….

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This is a photo of Scott and Brandy’s Billboard for the bar….”ONE PAW’Z PUB”…..It is located on Rt. 89 at the corner of Main Street into McNabb.   Rather IMPRESSIVE isn’t it.

 

 

 

 

 

Back Home In Illinois

We are back home for a short time.  We’ll be here around 3 weeks total.  Its good to see the kids again.  We left Harlingen on Saturday afternoon and arrived Monday afternoon.  The goal was to make it to Scott and Brandy’s  bar for tacos.  They serve them only on Mondays 5-7.  20170515_174717

They are deep fried, something you can’t get in Texas.  Must be a northern thing.  Brandy puts in the meat filling, inserts toothpick.  Drop them in the fryer and immetiately open and put in lettuce, onions and tomatoes after frying…..mmmmm…..Saturday morning I had an employees meeting before we left.  I work at the Cinemark 10, 2 days a week on the weekends in the box office.  I, of course am the oldest.  Most are all kids or young adults.  It was rather interesting.  The General Manager of the theater held the meeting.  The purpose of course is to update all employees on new programs coming up for the summer, as well as safety issues, fire drill procedures, and many at risk situations.  But the think I find most interesting is the general manager is so good with these kids.  He is firm with rules, but he also builds them up, trying to get them to strive for the very best in life.  He demands respect and yet have fun at the same time.  One of the managers, Miss Ramos, has been taking the steps to climb the ladder in the company.  She has just taken a test and achieved a fabulous score.  The General Manager announced that she was 4th in the nation and is now titled “Assistant General Manager”  Everyone is called Miss or Mr.  In fact, this is something I have noticed here in the Rio Grande Valley.  Their is respect everywhere from little kids to Seniors.  You can be in a grocery store or on the phone, and everyone says, “Thank You Maam”……It is something that is taught from childhood on and still continues.   As soon as I came back home we finished packing. 20170512_145157

This little guy was hanging around on the awning.  There are zillions of these everywhere.  Kinda cute……It was so hot……Sweat was just pouring off Rich.   Finally we took off and had a rather uneventful trip home……but that’s good…

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Kitty enjoyed the ride as usual, sleeping most of the time.  He would of course also sit on his foot stool by his dad and paw at him.  He always wants Rich to pet him while driving.

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Finally crossing the Mississippi we made it into Illinois.  We seen some floods coming across Arkansas.  They were really hit bad on the White River.  The Mississippi was up but nothing out of the ordinary.  Its been so much worse.

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Brandy behind bar

We arrived in McNabb and parked at “One Pawz Pub”.  Brandy was working,  Scott showed up about a half hour later, from driving truck.  This was the first time we had seen the new progress on the bar.  Scott reconstructed a new bar and put stripe designs in it and covered it with epoxy.  This is not a good picture but it is beautiful.

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Patio area….it was getting dark

He has also finished his patio out back.  He made all his own bars and bar stools and painted them different bright colors.  He also made 3 octagon picnic tables and put down grass turf.  They have a Harley Davidson Bag game in the area you can’t see.  He is striving to gain a lot of bikers this summer on their poker runs.

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Tammy, Cassidy and Carly came for Tacos.  Also her boyfriend Bryan and son.  Ed, Tinas Husband showed up with Austin.  Tina was at a softball game with Miley.  Finally Cameron came in.  He was working…….”What a Nice Sound”…..lol….This past year, Cameron has made “HUGE STEPS” in his life.  He accomplished his GED, then went to Truck Driving School, obtained his CDL, and now has a seasonal job at AG Service.  He drives the chemicals out to the fields for the farmers as they plant.  He loves it.  He also has a truck driving job coming up after the season is over.  It will be a roller coaster for him as he is only going to be 19 in June.  Lots of companies can’t or don’t want to hire him because of insurance.  When he is 21 it will get better…..Just have to stay positive….Finally Connie, Richs youngest sister came and Brian.  We had a nice visit eating Tacos.  Finally drove to the house a block away before dark, parked and settled in.

Now time for a “Randy update”.  Randy has been in New Orleans and Galveston having a Grand time.  He went to a museum to check out and learn about alligators and turtles.

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Look at Randy’s COOL NEW PANTS

He’s been to many resturants checking out the hot sauces and peppers…..lol

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But he decided to eat Brownies instead…..Guess he knew it would tear up his stomach.

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So now Randy and his parents are all packed up.  They are heading on their way to Maryland.  Their having such a good time seeing the sites….

Cant wait till we see where Randy’s Adventures take him next…..

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Randy and his Mom in Galveston La.

 

 

Home for 3 Weeks & Headed South……

Its been almost a month since I wrote the last blog.  We finished at Adventureland on Oct 1.  We headed home to Illinois on Oct. 2, parking in the lot of Scott’s house.  It is half way between both girls.  Tammy is in McNabb about 3 miles south and Tina is in Granville 3 miles north.  So Good Location, but bad location for phone or internet service.  Were 90 miles from Chicago, but may as well be at the South Pole….Hardly any reception…..Complaining does no good….Believe me…I’ve tried…

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First Day of School 2016

Rich’s plan for this time at home is working for a farmer hauling grain from the field to the elevator.  This is what he did everyday except rainydays for close to 3 weeks.  I began by babysitting the grandkids, Tina’s and Ed’s kids Miley and Austin and of course Dexter.  Tina and Ed both had to leave for the week for work related projects.  Ed went to Wisc. and Tina headed to southern Illinois to learn about the new computer system at the court house that links the State Programs.  On Monday I went in at 6:30 for my Orientation….lol….When to get them up, when and where to take them to school, when the bus comes, homework and bedtime.   So this was my first week home.  All went well until the last day of school, which was Thur.  Austin had the tablet in his hand before school and I took it away.  We got everything together and I took them to school.  Even Dexter goes with, cause Tina said he wants to go and send his kids off to school…lol.    Well about an hour later, Tina text me.  She just received a text from Austin’s teacher.  He snuck the tablet into his book bag and brought it to school.   Ohhhh Geees……Strike One…..The next day was no school.  The kids sleep in bed with mom and dad, Dexter too.   They woke up in the morning but didn’t come out till late.    They were being good so why both them…..Right…..Later that afternoon just before Tina came home, the kids went outside.  Miley came inside and layed down on the floor to watch TV.   I heard Austin outside yelling but didn’t really pay attention.   Tina pulls in the drive and comes in….”Why is Austin crying, locked up in the swimming pool pen”?    Really    Miley of course was grinning.   Then Dexter is so excited to see his mom.  He was jumping all over her.  He went and got a present which I thought was underwear or socks in his mouth.   Tina starts screaming,  “I smell SHIT OMG ”  She looked at what Dexter had in his mouth that he was so proud of……Austin had “SHIT” his underwear sometime during the day and left them lay.  Dexter had picked up the underwear which was full and was chewing it….I was rolling in laughter….It was so funny…..Strike Two….

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First Day of school 2016

A few days later, I stopped by and visited.  Tina said to me, “I sure don’t know what you were doing Friday morning when the kids woke up”.     Why.   Well those sweet children had some fun.  They had the bed full of coloring books and crayons.   Now Miley being a carbon copy of her mother, thought of something really cool to do.  She took rolls of scotch tape and ran it around all the bottle lids in the bedroom.  Then she moved on to the bathroom.  All lids were taped shut.  She even took the shampoo and conditioner out of the shower and replaced them with peroxide and other things.    Hahahaha…..Good One Miley.…Then she asked if I could sit again the following Friday…..Really…You Trust Me?…..

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This is what happens when I babysit

That next Friday, Ed’s dad had just flown in for several days.  He had things to do, so I went over around 10am.  We were talking the kids came out laughing.   They had put on makeup.  Of course I had to take their picture.  Did I get in trouble for that?  No.   I got in trouble for NOT closing the doors to the cabinets.   One is always suppose to check those cabinet doors and make sure their closed for pictures.   lol.

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Carly’s 1st day of Pre-School

I also spent time at Tammy’s house.  I always like to hear her stories of her patients at Kindred Hospital.  She is a RN and always has some interesting patients.  She really loves her work.   Little Carly is now in afternoon preschool.   She is so happy to go to school and ride the bus.  She is really growing now.  She insists her hair is always done.  She has natural curly hair.

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Cassidy, 2016. So Pretty

Cassidy is 12 and is becoming quite a young lady.  Tammy and the Kids went to Boggios Orchard and took some great Pictures.

I spent the day with Cassidy and we took this picture.

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Cassidy 2016, at the Mansion

We went shopping to the Mall, of course Bath and Body.  Bought some fun stuff.  We went to her favorite restaurant, House of Hunan, Chinese buffet.

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Now Cameron is 18.  He hates his picture take, but I thought I’d put this one in again.

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Cameron loves his car but he is a typical teenager.  The cops stopped him because of no license plate light.  So did he fix it?   NO   He simply taped a Flashlight to the car…..OMG….Just don’t forget to switch it off or your batteries will run down….lol…Or is this a BERGEN THING?……lol…..It’s kind of like Rich’s saying “Why fix it before it brakes” We also had some issues with our 2 rental houses.  It called for a dumpster…..Yuck……But fortunately part of those problems were resolved before we left.  Miley had her 8th birthday.

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Mileys 8th Birthday Oct. 2016

Her mom bought practical this year.  She is sick of toys.  Miley wanted her room painted so, she got paint brushes, roller with pan and paint samples.  She loved it.  Halloween was coming up.  Tammy took the girls to Peoria to buy costumes.

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Carly’s Halloween 2016

Carly is Strawberry Shortcake.  So cute.

 

Austin and his Friend….Miley…

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This is some of Scott and Brandy’s cliental for Halloween at One Paw’s Pub……They don’t drink much….lol….So after almost 4 weeks, we headed out to Harlingen Texas…..Eastgate MH & RV Park.….Our winter home, also our next workamping job.  Just like last year, Rich in Maintenance and I’m an Event Coordinator.  We visited many friends while home, took care of business, visited the kids and grandkids, and away we went…….

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Southward bound…….from chilly weather wearing jackets to 90 degrees weather…..YES, we are here…..Left on Thur and arrived on Sunday…..

Harlingen Texas, the home of the Winter Texans

 

 

One Paw’z Pub-2nd Annual Pre-Harvest Throwdown & Cruise In

On Sept 10 2016,  Scotty and Brandy hosted the 2nd Annual Pre-Harvest Throwdown.  Now in McNabb this is a huge affair.  The town is a little farming community on Rt. 89, but surrounded by corn fields.  It is one of the six little towns in Putnam Co., which is also the smallest county in the state of Illinois.  Our little village only has a population of 285 as of the census of 2010.  It is down from 310 in the year 2000.  McNabb has 1 gas station, Jacks Gas, 1 little convenience store attached.  It also boasts of Grassers Hardware and Heating, Morenos on Main Resturant, and a very modern Bank.  On the corner is One Paw’z Pub, our son’s tavern.

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This is the 2nd year that Scotty and Brandy have thrown this party.  This year the Village Board agreed to close 2 blocks of Main Street to host the event.

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The car club Blood Sweat and Gears were invited.  They showed up with some amazing cars for a Cruise – In. Their was such a nice collection dating from the early 30’s to new.   Over 70 cars were there

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This was my favorite.   1969 Camaro SS.  Now in the fall of 1969, I bought a brand new Camaro from the showroom floor  at Imm and Son Chevrolet in Toluca Ill.  It had a 350 and wasn’t an SS or RS, just a basic car.  But it was this maroon color with white seats and black dash and carpeting.  My first and only new car.  You wouldn’t believe what I paid.   The new 70’s had come out, so I was able to purchase it for $500 off sticker price…….Final Cost…..$3,000……Amazing…..I was single at the time.  I remember the gas mileage was awful.  I had it in the shop several times and I think it was only getting around 12 miles to a gallon. Gas was cheap in those days.  It was only 30 cents a gallon.  We had gas wars back then.  All the stations would try to out do each other to lower prices and have the cheapest gas.  I remember the low 20’s.  Rich remembers 21 cents in Chillicothe but 16 cents in Missouri on a trip.  Unfortunately, after we were married, we traded the car for a used pick up truck…..Grrrrrrr….If we only knew then what we know today…..

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This was a pretty car.  The gold looking trim paint between the red and purple was a pearl paint that changed colors when you walked by.

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This is Brandy’s favorite car.  A practically new Camaro in a beautiful shade of green.

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The head lights are awesome looking…..Eyes are looking at You….They are actually covers that are for show.  They take them off to drive…..

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A few more of the awesome cars in the Cruise In.

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A view down Main St.  This is a site this town rarely ever sees.  A Beautiful Site to see in this little village of only 275.

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This is the view from the bank looking at One Paw’z Pub.  You can see the stage set up for the band, the small tractor display with the Grain Elevator in the background.

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Now this picture I had to include,  These 3 red Dodges all belong to the Sandberg family.  They are HUGE MOPAR fans.  Far right is John and Trudy Sandberg (parents) Cuda,  middle-Sean(oldest son) Challenger,  in front of flower pot is Ryan (youngest son) Duster.  Tracy, their daughter and husband also had cars down the street on display.  Rich worked for Sandberg Trucking for a number of years on and off.  The kids all are part of the Company now and he still drives for them sometimes when were home.  Ryan’s wife Brandy is also the Mayor of McNabb.  During this time of the Cruise In the Restaurant and One Paw’z Pub were bustling with business.  The bar was full and really had to get through to the back.  Scott and Brandy have recently put in Slot Machines.  They remodeled the apartment on the side and incorporated it into the bar and installed 4 slot machines.

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Rich said they were busy all day, sometimes even people waiting to have their chance at the machines.  Scott has also added a patio off the back now.  He is still working on it and more plans for next spring.

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At 7pm. the Band was set up and began to play.  The RADIUM CITY REBELS was a 5 piece band that played some awesome music.  Scott backed his semi with trailer across Main St. It made a Great stage for the Band.  All traffic was rerouted through the back streets.

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They played till midnight.  It was a beautiful evening.  It was a little chilly but Perfect.

My sister in law, Connie lives in a little hamlet…lol…Mt. Palatine.  Its around 4 miles as the bird flys.  She sat on her back porch and she said it sounded like the band was in her back corn field…..lol…

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It was a really fun evening.  We seen many friends.  Carol and Jim came by.  Of Course Pam, your always their for a good time.  It was so good to see all of you.  Many more, but my biggest surprise was Lynn and Dale……They were celebrating Birthdays.  but Dale had just proposed to Lynn that day….He was even on his knees I believe…..How Sweet….Congrats to you both…..They are so Happy.  Also with them was a long lost friend from work.  Cindy was a supervisor.  She also went on to a better job.  lol.  It was a great time.

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So here is Scott and Brandy, early in the evening.  Unfortunately my phone went dead later and my charger also died….lol…Always happens at the worst times……Walmart here I come…..But what a Great Nite for this little town.  It was really loud and booming with music.  I asked several days later.   Did anyone call the Mayor or board and Complain?

…..Nope, Not A One……Maybe better read the Village Board Minutes next meeting…lol….

 

 

Labor Day Over….A Week Home

Labor  Day weekend was the last big FLING at the park for the year.  We worked all 3 days.  I worked doubles being it was the only hours you can have now.  Saturday and Sunday was 10 am. – 10 pm.  It was a long day but the weather was beautiful.  The temperature was high 70’s and low 80’s. “A PERFECT WEEKEND.”   On Labor Day Monday, the park was open 10 am – 7 pm.  The park was full of people.  It was the last day of Adventureland Bay.  The water park will be closed for the season, but the Adventureland park it self will be open weekends till the end of September.  We were busy all day and evening.  It was sad on Saturday evening to look out and realize that we wouldn’t be seeing the lights of the “Monster” in the beautiful park anymore.  The sights and sounds of the park are just magical at nite.  The beautiful colors of the twirling rides, and the reflections of the buildings and lights in the lake by …..Dragon……

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We will be closing earlier now on weekends and it will still be light. We had decided to take off the following week end and head home for a week.  The one problem was the cat.  Kitty has never road in the pickup.  Also he had no place to stay.  Tammy said he could stay their as it was his house, but she has a big dog “Chaos” and a cat “Charlie”.   But that was what we decided to do.  The nite before we went to Dairy Queen and took him for his first ride.  Kitty was curious, but we thought that was all it was.  When Rich opened the door at Dairy Queen, Kitty ran out the door.   OMG.   I panicked, and ran for him.  He went up by the building and under the picnic tables.  He was near the drive-up but their was a railing up that intimidated him.  He could have went through it but he backed away.  Finally we cornered him under the picnic table.  The next day we took off for our 4 hour drive.

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I put his soft harness on.  He again was curious.  He was nervous and kept walking around.  Finally he settled down under Richs feet while he was driving.  Half way into the trip, we decided to stop at a rest stop.  I took him out and hooked up his leash.  I kept walking towards the bushes and fields.  It was really hot and he started panting.   Took him over to the water hydrant and he wanted no part of that.  lol  Finally took him back to the truck, tried to give him some water and he wouldn’t drink.   So we headed on down the road.  …….Poor Kitty…….

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He was so tired and exhausted.  I think he was actually dehydrated and exhausted by the time we got home.  I carried him in the house and he ran for the bedroom and went under the bed.  That was the end of him for several hours.  I got his food, water and litter pan all set up and we closed the door  so he could rest alone.  I stayed at Tammys and took her bedroom that night.  He climbed in bed and was much better by morning.  In the morning we were all in the living room and Chaos ran down the hallway.

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He is part Lab and Pit Bull.  I was worried about him hurting Kitty.  Tammy ran down the hall as the dog started running and barking.  She SCREAMED…..”Mom, come get Kitty, he just got TWICE THE SIZE that he was…..lol..lol…She was worried about the dog and she was afraid Kitty of sink his claws in her dog.   Well poor Kitty just set the dog straight…..He said,  “I am BOSS, this was my house first.  Stay away from me”…..It was really funny.  Later we let her cat up from the basement.

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His name is “Charlie”.  He is a beautiful Persian.  Now Charlie was curious and wanted to play, but soon found out, Kitty does NOT PLAY.   He is an OLD MAN.  They had a few scrapes but managed to be respectful.  I kept seeing Charlie staring at him around corners and across the room.  By the time we left, Kitty was walking fairly freely through the house.  I was really amazed.

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This is “Dexter”, Tina and Ed and the kids dog.  He is a Golden Doodle who is going on 2 years old.  He is a very loveable and active dog.  He is almost like another “son”  in the house.  lol.

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Now Brandy and Scott have 2 house cats.  Both came as strays.  The yellow is “Seymour”, and the gray is “Clyde”.  lol.   Seymour has finally become lovable, but Clyde really likes to hiss at you.  So these are all the animal cousins…..lol…..

One day, Tammy went to work and forgot some papers, so Carly and I went to Peoria.  We got to tour the Kindred Hospital and seen where her momma works.   Carly loved that.  Then we went to Steak and Shake.

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Tammy said she would know just what she wanted by the pictures and she did.  We had to sit by the window by the Illinois River.  I had gotten some stuffed animals at the park for the kids so we gathered them together to give them out.  Cassidy didn’t make it, as she had went to her friends.

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They had fun.  Carly is far left, Austin, and then Miley.  Around their necks, you can see a stuffed snake.  I got Cameron a huge snake.  He has wanted to buy a real Python in an aquarium for his room.  I told him if he ever did that, I wouldn’t go in the house again.  So “Here is your snake”…..lol…..The only one I allow.

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He is a hard one to get a nice picture, but I managed to get this one uptown.  He’s doing what he does best…..driving….lol…Rich had his own agenda of fixing things.   Theirs always things to fix when we go home.  He also goes through the garage putting tools and things BACK WHERE THEY BELONG….Hmmmmm….Now why is that…..I also got a Biker Bear for Scott for the Bar.

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He was so big.  I looked at him for a long time, hanging in one of the games.   Finally I bought him.

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He was so BIG, he had to sit in the passenger seat with Rich.  I sat in the back and held him up.

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So here he is in his new home.  “One Paw’z Pub”…..McNabb, Illinois.   He’s going to be nothing but a BARFLY….lol…That weekend was also “ONE PAW’Z PUB’s”Pre Harvest Hoe Down.  Scott and the local Car Club had the Main Street blocked off.  He had a Band staged on his flat bed truck trailer.  Around 70 cars showed up for the Car Show.   Some Beauty’s’  That will be the next blog.   We left to go back on Wed. so we could have 2 days off before the weekend.  Groceries were needed and laundry to do.   And ya know we don’t have to move fast anymore, so 2 days to rest up is Wonderful.   I went back to Tammy’s that morning as we have been staying at Scotts, and put Kitty’s harness on and carried him to the car.  He was such a trooper all the way home.  I think he now realized it was ok.  He slept, although his space was not to big, but he didn’t get upset or anything.  He was fine.  We were all glad to get home.  Kitty walked in just like he was glad to be home from his vacation.   So Poor Kitty at 16 is still learning new things.  He learned how to ride in a pick up.  He learned how to live in his old house for 8 days with a dog and cat that had invaded his house.

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This is his new thing to learn.   How to go outside in a pen and not wander.  Now this is a problem.  He doesn’t understand yet.  He walks in circles and thinks he should be out under the motorhome……Not a Good Place for Him……

 

 

Home With The Family

We were home about 3 weeks.  We parked in the drive of our house, which of course is Tammy’s now.  They were all so happy to see us.  That weekend Scott and Brandy had Karaoke at the bar, One Paw’z Pub.  We went up and had a good time.  They had a nice crowd.

20160422_225117.jpg  Scott usually sings one song and he did again.  Brandy and Scott surely enjoy a good party. During this time, he also finished pouring concrete for his new patio out back.  His back room is also finished and he has finally installed his 4 slot machines.  You can already hear the sounds of “Ching ching ching”……

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Slots are all run by the wonderful State of Illinois Government of course.  The following weekend was McNabb Garage Sale day on Saturday.  We, or I should say Tammy cleaned out more of our stuff from the garage.  She did most of the work…lol..

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.She included lots of her stuff, kids clothes and all.  We had a pretty good day.  Sun was out, sprinkled a bit but not bad.

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On Mothers Day, we all got together and finally we Hung up the Piñata from Mexico…..SPIDERMAN…. We bought him in Progresso Mexico.  Can you see us carrying him all the way across the border?….lol…He rode in the bedroom all the way home.  He was to big to put under the bed….lol…Every morning, you woke up to those 2 eyes looking at you from the corner…..We bought all kinds of Mexican candy.  It turned out some of it wasn’t that good but the grandkids had a great time.  They kept going into the bedroom and ask…”Is the candy in him yet?”….

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After we ate, we filled him with candy and hung him from the tree.

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All the little ones had several turns.  Poor Spiderman lost his legs first, and one by one his hands came off…..Finally all the candy came out flying to the ground.  They kids flew to the ground and started gathering the candy.  They made the strangest faces after they ate it….Some candy was good,  some was not so good.  We couldn’t really read the wrappers….lol…

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Miley 7

 

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Austin 5

 

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Cassidy 12

 

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Carly 4

 

We also brought back some fun hats and bracelets for the girls, and a kite for Austin

20160425_170921.jpg.  Cameron, who is almost 18 doesn’t like his picture taken.  He managed to stay out of the way.  lol.  Until it came time to take pictures in the family tree.  This is a tree right in front of the house.  A perfect tree to climb when your a little kid.  We started taking pictures with the kids, and they named it “The Family Tree”.

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These are the grandkids today, even Cameron.  Poor little Carly was crying and trying to be still….She was saying  “Please, would somebody take my picture”….Poor little thing.  She didn’t have any shoes on….Now if you notice, Austin was running around all day in his underware….He hates his pants and shorts…It was a good fun filled day…..Also while we were here, Tammys family had all their eyes tested.  Cameron got contacts this time and Cassidy got her first pair of glasses.

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Very  pretty, Cassidy

Also Miley learned to ride her bike.   She has been making her dad go round, round and around the block in the evening…..lol..

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She is so Happy….Her wings are spreading farther….During this time, I did alittle babysitting and Rich drove the sand truck for Scott a couple of days and the grain truck for the neighbor across the street.  I was able to visit with a number of friends in Toluca, and had dinner in town with some of my favorite work friends.  We also had dinner with 2 of our favorite couples from our FMCA camping club.  I was fun to visit everyone again.

The last affair we had was my niece Ashley’s Baby Shower.

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This is Connie, my sister in law, Rich’s youngest sister, and her daughter Ashley.  This is Ashley’s first baby and the first Grandchild for Connie and Brian. and also for Matts parents.  They are all so excited.  Connie planned this fabulous shower and found out she is a really crafty person.  She made so many things.   The Theme was” Cute as a Button”

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This was the Spring Valley Boat Club.  All fresh flowers on the tables.  Burlap pieces were placed down the center of the tables with buttons on them. All place settings had little cups and a little diaper filled with nuts and mints.  So Pretty

 

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The Head Table….The cutest  baby scale with a Giraffe sitting on it….

 

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Connie took twigs from her trees and hung little baby socks, headbands on the little trees.  So so cute…These were the center pieces on each table.

 

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Tina made this Awesome Harley Davidson motorcycle made out of disposable diapers.  More fresh flowers and baby blocks glued together

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Just look at all this detail.   Connie was at the florist, and glued buttons in the center of each flower.  Not one flower was left “Unbuttoned”….lol…

 

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Amazing amount of presents….On the other wall, it was full of diapers…

 

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Desserts galore…..Matts Mom planned most of the food……And I might add the food table was so full of so much wonderful foods, we could have easily served 200.  No one left hungry or without having their sweet tooth fulfilled that day.

 

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So so creative.  I must say, it was probably the most beautiful Baby Shower I have ever attended.  Connie has Discovered “PINTERST”   Look out Brian, your house has been taken over….lol…

So now, Ashley and Matt just play the waiting game.  Their little baby girl, is due in June.  That is NOT FAR AWAY…..but for Mommy and Daddy and Grandmas and Grandpas, it will be an “ETERNITY”…..

 

Heading Home…Houston Flood….

The time has finally come.  Would you believe we have been in Texas 8 months….Wow….We left last Aug. for Gate Guarding in the oil fields, did that for 2 months.  What adventures we had their.  Now we have just completed our time at Eastgate as Workampers again.   It’s really not work, it is visiting, talking, and making many new friends.

20160417_162420Pulling off our pad, getting ready to hook up the truck….

So yesterday we packed up and left.  We had been doing a little all week. We still had a lot to do.  We work best at the last minute.  Then we visited and said our goodbyes….Had to stop at Alice and Toms,  their from Maryland.  What good friends they have become.  Rich returned tools to Gary and Marge and said our good byes.  Then up to the office to get the rest of my things.  On to Debbie and Rick to turn in all our keys.  Next, really good friends Roberta and Ken…..Then on to the Hall, their was John and Sandy , Glen and Kathy, our new Canadian friends…..and of course Jean and Eugene…..Finally Off we went….

20160417_163908Alice and Tom from Baltimore Maryland, made signs….Be….Safe….

 

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Spider-Man is Watching Over  Us……..We Will Be Safe…..lol

It was before 5pm.  Everyone said, Stay another nite……But then the Good byes would start all over again….lol….A huge storm was coming, so we decided to head east.  Over to Houston and east to Louisiana, and then turn north on 55.  All the way home….

So we finally left….fueled up at the edge of town and went on our way.  We stopped the other side of Victoria, in a rest area for the nite.  We were 2 hours from Houston.  The big storm came finally.  It was forecast to extend from the Rio Grande Valley up to Dallas and past to Oklahoma, and heading east.  It would dump up to 12″ of rain.  It sure did. The news from Houston in the morning, was more like 12 – 20 “…..Streets were underwater, they closed the schools and told everyone to stay home if they could.

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Calls came in, people needed rescued.  Eventually  1200 people had been rescued and 6 people died.  Most of them was from driving into the flooded waters.  This was the worst flash flooding since Tropical Storm Allison in 2001.

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We watched the weather on the Weather Channel App.  Finally we found a break and we took Interstate 10  all the way through Houston.  It was a good ride for us.  But when we went through, we could see many of the city streets below the interstate flooded.  Cars were sitting in the middle.  Flashers were on and in a few cases, the police or ambulances were their to help them.  We only had 2 places  where 1 lane was closed because they were full of water.  A friend, (Thank You Tammy Bellamy Bybee) gave us the website for Texas Road Closures, so we felt safe enough to drive through.

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As we watched tv newscast the next morning, a news reporter was down by an under pass reporting on the flood.  Right behind him this man drove right into the water.  He got out of the car and the reporter still with the camera on him and his mike in hand, swam into the water and helped him to safety.  Crazy to be caught on video.  He was so lucky.

We made it through Texas finally, and stayed just north of New Orleans at the I 55 Junction.  Headed north the next day , all the way through St. Louis.  We timed it so we could stop at our favorite restaurant in Lincoln Illinois.  One of the old original Bonanza Steak House restaurants.  Love their buffet.  I always order their sirloin tips…loaded with mushrooms and onions….mmmmmmmmmmmm…

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We try to stop every time we go through.   It is a 3rd generation home owned restaurant.  It was built in the 70’s and is one of the few left in Illinois.  We left Harlingen on Sunday and pulled into the drive Thursday Afternoon.  Stopped up at the One Paw’z Pub, (Scott & Brandy’s Tavern)….Spent time their, unhooked the truck, and homeward bound.

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Sunday Afternoon around 4:30 PM……..

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Thursday Afternoon around 4:30 PM…..A Beer on the bar…..One Paw’z Pub…..

 

Home Again….Spring is Here……Flowers and Trees are Blooming…

We finally returned home over a week ago.  The weather was so chilly, at least for us.  We stopped first at Scotts new Bar he purchased……..”One Paw,z Pub”…..

Scott and Brandy bought the only bar in McNabb, known as Kathys before.   They took over on April 1st.   They will continue to serve lunch Monday-Saturday, with a daily special and have lengthened their hours to 1 or 2 on weekends.   They have added 2 more TVs, and Scott made some new tables.  A new Digital Juke Box and working on Gaming machines.   Yes he wants to serve the summer bikers on their poker runs.  He has some really cool ideas on Advertising……

He has signs painted on his trailors.   lol   On FB, he says where he is working for the day and if anyone takes his picture at the job site, they can redeem it for a …..“FREE BEER”……lol.  Before we left the bar,  Tammy came in with Cassidy and Carly, Ed arrived, but Tina was working, and Scott got off early and came in.   Of course Brandy was bartending.   So after a nice visit, we went the rest of the way home…..lol….2 blocks…. The girls were having a garage sale in Granville on Friday and Saturday.  It was Granville Townwide.   I went over Friday with my winter coat on.  Saturday was so rainy, they closed up early.  So this last Saturday was McNabb Townwide.

I got everything ready with the help of Tammy and Tina, and they brought all their stuff over.  We advertised on Facebook sites and opened on Friday.  The weather was beautiful.  The temperature was in the low 70s and the sun was shinning beautiful.  We made almost $500 between the 3 of us.   A pretty good days haul.  We decided to do it again at Tammys soon.  So we loaded it all back up into the enclosed trailor to take it into Spring Valley.  The little kids had fun.

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Tina was selling this swing at her house, but Austin and cousin Carly had fun for awhile.  Austin loves his dinosaurs, and Carly loves Barbies.  If you notice, look at Austins forehead…..lol….he wrote on it….haha….those 2 can get in so much mischief… 11208768_10203995698560475_1193875662_n Miley was clowning around with a little baby hat.  lol   She’s so cute with her teeth missing. I also met my new Grand Dog. 11216127_10203995565077138_1212409048_n

“Dexter”.  

He was born the end of November.  Tina adopted him up in Jan.  This is his little bed he came home in.   He could lay down and spread out.   lol  Well not no more.   He has sure grown.  He had his appointment that day at the vets….Ouch…No babies for him.   She even ordered him pain pills, but I don’t think he needed them.  He was just as active as before.   He loves to play ….ALL THE TIME…. As we sat their, I realized the yard was becoming full of spring flowers and smells.   Rich had cut the grass already the day after we got home, and Scott had cut it once before.  As you looked around you could see the tulips and daffodils opening.

11210212_10204004406378165_564352646_n The lilacs are opening also.   The aroma of the lilacs is so wonderful and refreshing.  As the wind blew the smells of lilac came floating in the air, along with the little petals of the lilacs came floating to the ground. 11212223_10204007317930952_1703601785_n I have a beautiful redbud tree also, at the corner of our lot.  We planted it many years ago.  We went into the woods and found a little sapling of a tree and brought it home.  Here it is today.  Just gorgeous.  With all the rain we have had the grass is a beautiful green, but it also just keeps growing.   So now we continue to work on this house.  So much more stuff to get rid of.   I was planning on staying in the MH.  I wasn’t thinking of the fact, we couldn’t use the bathroom facilities, cause we aren’t hooked up.  Sure don’t want to fill up the holding tanks.   So we are staying in the house.  The trouble with that, is the kitchen has been totally cleaned out.  Everytime we cook anything, it takes trips out to the MH to get things.   lol.   All our clothes are out their to.  But onward we go…..Our Goal…..Just Get Rid of all the Excess…… 11195410_10203963685360165_602001647_n So here sits the beast…..sitting in the driveway….On May 19th, my half brother from Albuquerque, New Mexico, is coming for the first time ever.   Were going to have him stay in the MH.  Best bed we have….lol…He has always wanted to come east,

 So it will be an exciting 2 weeks for us.