Tuesday, February 27, 2007

10:49 am Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Busy, busy, weekend! We had planned a “work party” at cousin Nada’s house when the phone rang then rang again. The first call came from my sister, Robin and her husband Walt. We knew they were coming (just not exactly when until the day before) and they had arrived in Yuma for the weekend. They had settled into a motel just a short distance from Aunt Elaine’s house.

The next morning we all met at Elaine’s place for a wonderful gab-session and Nada joined us. Phil and Walt went off to preview a tractor auction at the Dome Valley Tractor Museum for his nephew who is an apple farmer in eastern Washington. One of his hobbies is collecting antique farm equipment. Walt went to check out a certain model he was curious about. When Walt and Phil returned, we went out to dinner.

The next day we all got together again and had a “potluck” dinner at Elaine’s house and later that day, the phone rang again. Our good friend, Les was visiting his sister in southern California and had an appointment in Mexico for some dental work. He was on the road to Yuma and hoped we could put him up on our couch (which of course we were happy to do). When he got into town, Les came to Elaine’s and got a chance to visit with Robin and Walt and Elaine.

The next day Phil kept him company on the drive down to Los Algodones. When they got home the three of us went to Golden Corral for a wonderful lunch and Les headed back to California.

We came home and realized after three wonderful family and friend filled days, we had not taken one picture the whole weekend! Unbelievable . . .

A beautiful sunset over Mitry Lake in Arizona

Thursday, February 22, 2007

12:07 pm Thursday February 22, 2007

First, let me apologize for a couple problems with my blog that I have no way of knowing how to correct. #1. Our profile has dropped to the bottom of the page again. This is a chronic problem and so far, I do not know what triggers it. #2. When you click on our pictures now, they come up four times bigger than the screen! Again, I do not know why! Someday, Blogger will answer my e-mail and tell me how to fix it … until then, I ask for your patience.

I am an older woman living with a younger man—not a lot younger but young enough that people are surprised when they hear he retired 2 ½ years before he was eligible for social security.

Well, his “penalty” time is up, he has paid his dues and in January of 2007, his ship came in. Everyone says social security is going away and that it is not enough to live on anyway. I do not know about the first part and I will probably not live long enough to worry about it anyway but we know the second part is true. We certainly could not live on Phil’s check but boy oh boy, is it wonderful to see it magically appear in the bank statement and it will be a welcome addition to our other retirement income

We have managed just fine for the past 2 ½ years but suddenly, the mercury, instead of falling steadily is rising again! After such a long time, we can actually start fattening up the kitty each month. There is something about being able to save money that just makes life more pleasant, don’t you think?

We have been lucky and able to cover our unexpected expenses these past couple of years (and, as you all know, there has been a couple big hits to the budget) and knowing that our worm has turned is a happy thought; in a tiny little way, we feel like we have hit the lottery!

PS: The weather in Yuma is wonderful! Warm, sunny with a little breeze. Wish you were here!

Phil photographed this unusual cloud formation on his first day of fishing near Yuma. He told me, "fish were caught" when he came home. Mostly blue gills I heard later.

This ranch house has the most beautiful, freshly painted, purple fence made of adobe around the front. It was on the road into Casa Grande from the Pinal County Fairgrounds.

Sunday, February 18, 2007

10:03 am Sunday, February 18, 2007

Hello Yuma! Hello warm weather! It was 60 degrees this morning when I got up at 6:30 am … now that is more like it! I swear the night before we left Casa Grande it got down to near freezing. Phil and I were snuggled under a blanket, our quilt and a big afghan tucked under our chins to stay warm ‘cause we’re too cheap to run the furnace. Actually, the thermostat is set at 60 degrees and it did not come on but it sure felt colder than that!

I thought I was hearing things when I got up this morning. The sound of the coffee pot perking, naw … could the sound be coming from the neighbors? Phil knows I usually get up very early on Sunday morning (unless I forget what day it is~~~) so I will not miss my favorite show “Sunday Morning” on CBS and guess what? He set the timer on the coffee pot for me! What a nice surprise from my sweetie!

We attended a Fire Safety seminar at the rally. Phil came back to Penny and immediately checked our one and only fire extinguisher inside the coach beside the door. Can you believe it was dead! I am almost certain it was most likely the original extinguisher that came with this coach. Had we not gone to the seminar we probably would not have checked it. We bought three foam extinguishers from Mac (the “fire guy”) and learned he recommended FIVE extinguishers for a motorhome and toad. One in the toad (we have that), one in with the propane tank (we put in one of our new foam extinguishers); one in the bedroom (new foam one back there); and one in the kitchen (new foam one there) and a new powder extinguisher we bought yesterday for just inside the door.

We went shopping at Wal*Mart yesterday and bought each of us a pair of leather gloves in case we decide to fight any fire that might break out. Mac told us that we had three choices if a fire happens. 1. Fight the fire. 2. Get out of the coach (statistics say we will have about 20 seconds). 3. If we have to get out, we must prepare to fight our way out. He also told us it was imperative that we practice … practice … practice. So far, we have not done that part.

Friday, February 16, 2007

7:55 pm Friday February 16, 2007

The Gypsy Gathering Rally at the Pinal County Fairgrounds in Casa Grande is over. It was a lot of fun and Nick, our host has penciled in another rally in February of 2008. He will let us all know about it through his bi-monthly newspaper for RVers, called The Gypsy Journal. I'm sure we will attend if it actually happens.

We attended several seminars including: All about Awnings by Russ Maxwell; Fire Safety by Mac McCoy (excellent!); Highway History & Back Road Mystery (Nick wrote this great book and put excerpts in the Gypsy Journal) by Nick Russell; RVing the Heartland of America (I LOVED this one) by Dave Baleria and The Frugal RVer ( I read this book by Nick as well) by Nick Russell. We also joined in the pizza party and watched the Cactus Queen beauty contest. We went to one early morning coffee and donuts gathering. Finally after three nights of door prizes it paid off when last night we won a free night at Picacho Peak RV Park (between Casa Grande and Yuma) and one free year of The Gypsy Journal! There were hundreds of wonderful door prizes and lots of happy winners. There was also a White Elephant Auction where many people, for very little money got some great bargains.

One of our regular readers Bill introduced himself and his wife, Diane. That was fun to put a face to the name after he contacted us over a year ago when we were both in Florida and has followed our blog ever since. Bill is also a datastorm user and you can check out his website at: www.sacnoth.com/

A beautiful sunset at the Pinal County Fairgrounds.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007


10:39 am Wednesday February 14, 2007

Phil climbed up on the roof to try and capture some of the 185 rigs that are here for the rally.

Blue skies in the northeast peeking out from behind the clouds. That is the wonder of Arizona. The weather changes quickly and cloudy skies don't stick around very long.

Stormy skies toward the southeast over the Gypsy Journal Gathering Rally.

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

10:33 am Tuesday Feb 13, 2007

A really poor quality picture taken the first day. This is just the left side of a huge building full of the Gypsy Gathering Rally participants. The middle and right side were equally as full. We met all the vendors and Nick handed out dozens of door prizes. As usual, we didn't win anything ~~

For more info on the rally check out Nick's blog:


Two RVing kittys outside on their leashes. They were super friendly and perfectly happy to be tethered to their home on wheels.

Monday, February 12, 2007

10:22 am February 12, 2007

We are checked in, set up and ready and willing to participate.

Phil is out walking around trying to find out the plan.

So far, we have not received an agenda … maybe they will not have one.

This is our first rally so everything is new and my ”control” issue is rearing it’s ugly head.

I am going to try to relax and just take each moment as it comes.

No work (which for me is writing), no pressure, no time tables … I’ll let you know what happens

There is the "Internet Anywhere" van. It belongs to our friends, Bill and Janet who installed our datastorm (satellite internet) system. Check them out at: www.internetanywhere.us

Participants lined up to check in and get their parking pass and name tags in front of the Gypsy Journal Bus owned by Nick and Miss Terry-our fearless leaders for this rally.

There is our Penny-all set up and ready to join in the fun! It clouded up and rained on us last night but the sky is clear and blue this morning.

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

11:31 am Tuesday, February 6, 2007

Here is Phil polishing the last section of our Penny the Pace's skin. He waxed her by hand all the way around, she feels s-o-o-o good and looks beautiful. Our pretty lady will certainly hold her own among the newer big rigs when we arrive at the rally this weekend!
Notice that "cold-blooded" Phil is wearing shorts and sandals ... yes, that means our southern Arizona weather is warm again!

Monday, February 05, 2007

9:16 am Monday February 5, 2007

I am still having difficulty loading pictures on the blog. My picture program has stopped working for me so I uninstalled it. Now, I am using the “add image” feature on my Blogger website. It is V-E-R-Y slow and consequently I hesitate to upload more than a couple pictures at a time. Does anyone know of a FREE program online that will replace my old favorite, “HELLO”? I have done a Google search without much luck.

On Saturday, we drove the “Apache Trail.” At the west end, it begins at Apache Junction, AZ and travels east ending at Roosevelt Lake. This is the lake where we camped for a week last spring with our friends, Don and Ardella and Phil enjoyed some excellent fishing time. It is a beautiful drive that crosses the Tonto National Forest. Only 46 miles long but there were some white-knuckle spots for me as it dropped 1,000 feet in elevation over a 15-17 percent grade at Fish Creek Hill.

The restaurant, general store and museum at Tortilla Flat were crowded which was a surprise mid-way in the drive. We had to slow way down and creep through the block long tourist trap jammed with people and cars. This part of the road is unpaved and primarily one lane but the view of Fish Creek Gorge is spectacular from this area. Since there are warnings about the dangers and it is not recommended for big RVs, we were surprised and puzzled by how many 5th wheels and motorhomes we saw in the campgrounds along the way. So many brave people—we would never take Penny the Pace up (or down) that road!

Around and around and down we go!

Tortilla Flat.