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Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Frozen crystals

Before we left Ella told me she wanted a “crystal thing” like in the movie Frozen.  Well today Tom took us to visit with one of his neighbors Calvin.  He is retired and has been rock hunting and collecting for over 10 years.  He has an unbelievable collection of crystals, minerals, fossils, etc. in his house.  But on the walkway to his house are a few pieces of petrified wood.  These are about 2’ in diameter and 3 or 4’ high!  Amazing.  His backyard has piles of rocks everywhere that he has either collected himself or bought from overseas.  Quite a bit of his rocks are very rare.  We spent about 2 hours listening to his stories.  He is very knowledgeable about geology.  He let me cut a couple pieces and let Cindy polish them.  They came out quite nice too.

Not far from Toms house near Surprise are fields of roses.  They grow the bushes to sell and are beautiful to see fields of red, pink, yellow, and white roses.  Today we saw the workers on these wheeled carts laying on their stomachs working on the bushes.  There was another worker who pushed these covered carts along as they needed.  I snapped this shot with my camera while we were driving past the fields.

We’ve been busy helping Tom and Darlene move from their house in Mesa to the new one.  Saturday we had a ground breaking barbecue for Tom’s bus barn he is building in the back yard.  Had about 25 people over and bbq’ed bacon stuffed burgers.  Cindy cooked gumbo and bread pudding.  Not much was left over.

Oh yeah, clumsy me tripped and split my elbow open like a watermelon.  Had to go to urgent care.  The doctor took over 2 hours to clean it, put 5 stitches, and then apply pressure for about 20 minutes so it wouldn’t bleed.  That hurt the most.  So for the next couple days I had my arm in a sling and couldn’t do anything.  But it’s much better now and I can use it.  Just need to be careful.  Get the stitches out on Monday.
That's it for now.  We plan to leave next week, probably Tuesday morning.  We'll drive over to Durango, CO for a week or so.  Then we'll start heading back to Louisiana for a month.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Bleeding moons

It was with a heavy heart that we left Paincourtville on Friday morning in the rain.  We have enjoyed our winter stopover.  It has been fun spending time with family and friends.
Thursday afternoon we went to Ellas school to watch her perform in their Easter Angel Choir.  All of the kindergarten and 1st graders had fun singing their hearts out.  Even Eva seemed to enjoy it.

We drove the first 2 hours in rain then it cleared up.  Stopped over in Beaumont for the night and met up with Rudy and Carol for dinner.  Saturday morning drove over to Kerrville, TX for a night or two.  Cindy talked with the lady at the office and scored a free night so we stayed until Tuesday morning.  We tried to rent a car Monday to sight see but there was nothing available.  But we did stop at a rest area for lunch and saw some pretty flowers:

 Oh yeah, the truck is in the shop getting repaired from a slight mishap while I was loading the RZR in the back.  The straps holding the ramps up broke and I had no choice but to gun the throttle.  Well I made it into the truck but couldn’t stop in time.  Broke the rear windshield on the truck and dented the rear panel.  So had to leave it for repairs.

We had a nice drive as I decided to drive 60 mph.  It helped the fuel mileage since I was getting 8.5 mpg.  We stopped for the night north of Tucson in a trailer park that advertised big rig rv parking.  Yeah right, the 70’ pull through was about 20’ short and I had to back out of the spot and squeeze through the turns.  Oh well, we just need to check out our stops before we pull in.  Gotta remember that.
Thursday around lunch we pulled into Tom and Darlenes new place in Wittmann, AZ.  Nice place out in the desert just west of Phoenix.  They previously lived in a nice subdivision in Mesa and once Tom retired he wanted to leave the city.  Yep, he’s out of the city.  Chickens, horses, goats, rattlesnakes, etc.  But it’s nice and quiet out here and they love it.

Tom and I went to Canyon raceway to be the pit crew for his son in law Jon.  He has a modified stock car he races.  He did well starting in 14th place and moving up to 4th place but unfortunately blew his transmission so couldn’t finish.  Oh well that’s racing.  It was fun to watch the different classes of cars race from the sprint cars to dwarf cars to stockers.

I’ve been helping Tom with a few little projects around the homestead.  They’re getting carpet put in today so we’ll help them move some furniture in tomorrow.  Last night I drove with Tom over to north of Prescott to buy an 8.5 x 20’ enclosed trailer.  We got back just in time to enjoy the blood moon.  The skies out here are incredibly clear and bright.
That's it for now.  We're just enjoying spending time with friends and enjoying the nice weather.  It's been in the mid 80's and in the 60's at night.  Really pleasant but DRY!