I am finding it difficult to get in the holiday mood while cohabitating with my sweetie here in Yuma, Arizona embraced by all this sunshine and 70-plus degree weather. Perhaps I could try playing holiday music or maybe rent a Christmas movie to watch (one with lots of snow) while I compose. Do you think that might work? Hmmmmm………
Here, for your review is a very condensed version of our last 12 months of living retired and loving it!
December of 2005: We were in sunny Florida. However, that month was anything but sunny or warm. A bit disappointing but we had a great time at the Kennedy Space Center and visiting my cousins Ginny and her brother, Eddie who live there year-round. Sadly, Eddie lost his wife Anita a short time later and we were so glad we were able to see her before she passed. We didn’t make it to Key West … I guess that means we have to go back. J
January 2006: We were moving faster than we really like, traveling from Florida through Alabama to Tennessee and visiting with my cousin, Sharon and her wonderful family then friends Margie and Roger. The bad weather (tornados and such) was licking at our heels but after traveling through Mississippi, we stopped in Vicksburg to visit the battlefield. I had a great, great grandfather in the Union Army who took part in that siege. Then we moved on through Louisiana to Texas where we spent another wonderful week visiting with Phil’s nieces and nephews.
February and March: We made our way through New Mexico into Arizona and settled into an RV park near Payson, to spend some time with our friend, Ardella. We experienced being snowed in (in AZ!!!) for a few days and we helped her celebrate her 67th birthday, (she considered the snowfall a wonderful gift--she was like that.)
April and May: We spent a week camped on Lake Roosevelt with Ardella and her husband, Don. Phil and Don fished every day and Ardella and I did some marathon visiting. We left them there and traveled on down the “hill” to Yuma and whiled away some wonderful hours with my two Aunts, Beverly and Elaine before they headed north, doing the “snowbird” thing. We had planned to be right behind them but Phil had a minor accident in the Wal*Mart parking lot (he ran into a light pole base) and we were delayed five weeks getting our little truck fixed.
June, July and August: Our summer was filled with family and friends. Phil was fishing with his pal, Les as much as possible and went deep-sea fishing with his son Mike; we had all of our yearly tests and doctor visits; we attended family birthday parties and went to the local rodeo at the fairgrounds as well as Shelton’s yearly Garden Tour. I made a commitment to get my genealogy affairs in order and finish my mother’s biography this winter. So far, so good, it is coming along nicely.
September: We headed south and stopped in Albany, Oregon for our Penny the Pace’s yearly checkup at McKay’s Trucking. My computer died the next day. Leaving Penny in good hands, we drove The Lone Ranger back to Shelton to see about getting it repaired (no luck-the hard drive crashed) and spent the weekend as guests of our friends Gloria and Les while they had their 2nd garage sale of the year. Got to say “See Ya next trip!” to a lot of people we would have missed otherwise. Returned to Oregon on Monday and bought a new computer at Wal*Mart (no sales tax).
October: Our round-a-bout track south went north then east along the Columbia Gorge on the Oregon side where we rendezvoused with my sister for a couple hours as she was heading west, then into Idaho where we spent some time with my cousins, Bobby in Weiser and Norma in Buhl. Bobby’s husband took Phil fishing and we explored the beautiful Snake River backcountry. Later, Norma showed us the cemeteries in Twin Falls where so many of my family are buried. Moving south, our Utah stops included visits with Phil’s uncle and cousins in Salt Lake City, and my cousins in Kaysville and nieces in St. George. We took the tour of the LDS Temple and drove east for a quick visit to the magnificent Zion Nation Park.
November: The new computer was working great; I had most of my information reloaded (thank goodness I had 99% of it backed up on CD) when we found our way to Las Vegas and visited with my cousin Buster who lives in Henderson. We went to see the Bodies Exhibition and Buster gave us an extensive tour to see the growth in the area. We arrived in Yuma on the 10th where we will spend most of the winter except for a side trip to a rally next February.
Our year in detail is here in the archives of our web log, “Backroad Chronicles”. We hope this letter finds you and yours well and happy and remember, “You only live once; but if you live it right, once is enough!” Adam Marshall
Happy Holidays to all with love and best wishes,
Julie JOY JulieJoy@aol.com and Phil firstname.lastname@example.org