Sunday, January 27, 2008

10:25 am Sunday, January 27, 2008

I’m trying to make lemonade … I really am … but after being bombarded with a dump truck full of lemons this past week I felt a bit overwhelmed! Then, as a topper to the week over night and this morning it is raining—hard with something you don’t see very often in the winter time—water running in the gutters. I suppose the old timers consider it a blessing but for a newbie to Arizona winters, I find it gray and gloomy and acutely dismal.

Starting off the week there was a fire in our RV Park last Sunday. It happened in the middle of the night and it is believed a charcoal BBQ tucked underneath the trailer at bedtime ignited a golf bag nearby and it went from there. No one was hurt but as you will see in the pictures below, the trailer burned to the ground. They are taking up a collection for the victims and doing a benefit dinner next week. The neighbor told Phil that it woke him up and when he looked outside he saw a ladies purse come flying out the window followed by the occupants out the door. Seeing the destruction and realizing how quickly it can happen left me with a queasy feeling in the pit of my stomach. As wonderful as these rolling homes are for people with gypsy blood in their veins, they can transform themselves from a comfortable, cozy home into a puff of smoke in a heartbeat. Rarely is there anything left to salvage.

Mid-week my sister, Dixie went in for another surgery on her hip. An earlier X-Ray determined that one of the screws in the original repair job was coming loose. When the surgeon opened the incision he found an infection and had to abort the repair and leave the bones without support. Through yesterday, she was still in ICU and has been immobilized in traction until the infection is eradicated and they are able to try another repair on the hip bone. After making such great progress the week before this is a major setback and understandably, Dixie is suffering from a huge case of the “D’s” … disappointment, depression, distress, downheartedness along with being seriously DISGUSTED to mention just a few! Thank you to all who have stopped by to see her, sent her wishes for a quick recovery and made all the phone calls to cheer her up. Her other sister, Robin and I appreciate you all taking the time to give her daughter, Tammy a well-earned “attaboy” for the care she is giving her mother and to let Dixie know she is in your thoughts.

The third punch I received was in a heartfelt letter that arrived from the daughter of one of my ELLISON cousins. Even though we only met once, her mother, Mary and I have corresponded over past years, sometimes more often than others and truly enjoyed examining our family tree together and sharing our life stories. Her daughter, Valorae, informed me that Mary has been placed in a nursing home with rapidly advancing dementia and she is only three years older than me. It has broken my heart and I am sincerely mourning her loss.

Beyond the obvious, the fact that I woke up each morning in fairly good health and without any aches and pains, the bright spot of the week was that my Aunt Elaine finally arrived in Yuma yesterday. After a large number of very cold weeks in Washington along with rain and even some snow, she finally got out of Dodge! Her son, Casey drove down with her and both were happy to get here and find it 70 degrees on her patio (I'm wondering if they brought this rain with them)! Unfortunately, due to civic wheels grinding slowly, her electricity will not be turned on until Monday so they are operating from extension cords plugged in at the neighbors until then. Gosh, it is good to have her here again!

Here is a quote I find very apropos this morning—from the author of Winnie the Pooh: “Memories are the key not to the past, but to the future.” A.A. Milne (1892-1983)

Burned to the ground!

The next door neighbors were not home but their trailer is also significantly damaged.

Check out the back end of the 5th wheel next door. They suffered considerable heat damage.

One of the little mysteries of this fire ... how did those propane tanks on the tongue of the trailer survive without any apparent damage?

Here is our Penny at Desert Holiday RV Park in Yuma. She is tucked in tightly between two other rigs. If either of them catch fire ... I'm afraid we would be in trouble!

Sunday, January 20, 2008

10:42 am Sunday January 20, 2008

When I published this morning ... my profile dropped to the bottom of the page ... AGAIN! I have no idea why this happens and get no satisfaction from Blogger when I try to contact them for an explanation. It has happened several times before and once I managed to fix it myself but the other times, I had to wait until my monthly archiving was finished before it came back. If anyone has any ideas or information I would be eternally grateful for your input!

Please contacted me at

9:42 am Sunday, January 20, 2008

Not much excitement in our world lately but this morning I will check in so you know I have not forsaken the blog. We are happily settled into Yuma but it would be nice if it warmed up a little. The sun heats up our tiny space during the day but the evenings and nights require our catalytic heater to stay comfortable. We’ve used more propane this winter than ever before but fortunately a mobile supplier comes by once a week. Phil reminds me we could be living where the rain and snow prevail eight months a year and although that philosophical statement is true, I continue to wish for and often vocalize my boring bleat for warmer weather as it continues to be less than 40 degrees in the mornings!

We went to Blockbusters here in Yuma to investigate their procedure for renting movies to Rvers and were happy to discover it is just a matter of a credit card and identification. Exactly as it was when we were living in a stick and brick house. Unfortunately, even with thousands of videos and CDs displayed, it seemed to me their newest titles were a bit old. We saw 3:10 to Yuma quite a while back and it was the newest film they had in stock. The coming soon—New Release board touted three titles I had never heard of so my excitement about catching up on movies we have failed to see was dampened just a bit. I did find several titles from last year that we had missed—none of which were anything to get excited about.

My doctor in Shelton was most likely happy to receive my latest blood work via FAX as all my numbers were good and my A1c was 6.5 (diabetic in good control). We are still waiting for my Aunt Elaine to arrive—hopefully around the end of the month and we are looking forward to our five-day Gypsy Journal Rally at the Pinal County Fairgrounds in Casa Grande, Feb 10th. My project (scanning ALL my photos and genealogical documents into my computer) is coming right along. We bought an external hard drive and are backing up my work weekly. The hard drive goes to the Lone Ranger after each download so my eggs are not all in one basket.
Sister Dixie update: She is up on the walker and getting in and out of bed by herself! Fabulous progress and we praise her for all her hard work that is beginning to pay off!
While in Albany the spring of 2006 while we were waiting for Penny the Pace to get all her yearly work done, we spent some time exploring the Oregon Coast. The weather was less than perfect and consequently, our pictures left a lot to be desired. Here are some picture postcards of that extraordinarily beautiful place that we purchased for your enjoyment.

Sea stacks and wildflowers at Bandon.

photo by: Larry Geddis

A fantastic wave curl at Cape Kiwanda.

photo by: Craig Tuttle.

Sunset over the needles at Cannon Beach.

photo by: Steve Terrill

Sunday, January 13, 2008

9:11 am Sunday, January 13, 2007

What is that old saying … Some days are diamonds and some days are coal? We had a diamond day last week!

Many years ago, when I was a very young woman I married a man who had children from a previous marriage. The oldest was a nine year old daughter they had named Roxanna Marie. Roxy as she was called was beautiful and bubbly, a delightful child and I fell in love with her at first sight. Well, as things sometime happen, her father and I divorced and later when I was getting married again, she and her mother (we had become friends through the kids in addition to a similar divorce) were invited to the wedding. Now at almost 15, she gave me the greatest compliment I have ever gotten by coming up to me after the ceremony and tearfully asking me, “Will you still be my mother?”

Well, she has a loving, exceedingly satisfactory birth mother that has been in the picture since day one and so inevitably, over the past 41 years as our lives have followed different paths, our visits have been somewhat erratic. However, we have always stayed in touch to some degree (Christmas cards then e-mail, etc.). When I met Phil we discovered he had owned the restaurant and bar in the small town where she lived and they had known each other for some time. We were amazed at how small our world really was!

Guess what? It had gotten smaller yet! In answer to my Christmas greeting via e-mail this past December, Roxy sent me a response. In it, she brought me up to date and reported that just this last summer her husband had taken an early retirement; they had sold their home in Washington State and relocated to Yuma! Wow! What a wonderful surprise! They purchased a very charming home in the foothills and have settled in to Yuma like natives for year-round living and they love it. We now have even more family to visit while we spend some of our winter months in the sunshine.

Sister Dixie report: At the last check-in, she is reporting another milestone … she is sitting up in the wheelchair for several hours at a time now with less pain than before. Our sister, Robin from California has arrived in WA and will be monitoring the progress and keeping me informed until she goes back to CA the end of January. Robin also hopes to give Dixie’s daughter, Tammy a break in the ever present vigilance that is necessary for quality care in a nursing facility.

A very candid shot of my stepdaughter, Roxy who came to visit us before we all went to our favorite restaurant, The Happy Chef in old town Yuma.

Newly retired, and new resident of Yuma, Arizona, Roxy's husband, Marv.

Sunday, January 06, 2008

10:24 am Sunday, January 6, 2008

Just one of the numerous benefits of being retired is not having a need to know what day of the week it is. However, that said—I must add sometimes it gets me into trouble—like today. I forgot it was Sunday (the day I post in my blog) … that means I am late getting up and consequently, because we need to be someplace at 11 am, my blog post is going to be short and sweet today! Sorry about that!

This morning, I received an e-mail from another Blogger asking if I wanted to exchange links. He complimented me on my blog and gave me the URL to his blog. This isn’t the first time I’ve received this sort of an offer and I have always been distrustful of these invitations. But, without thinking and throwing caution to the wind, I went to his site and then my computer locked up. Oh, oh! I held my breath (and uttered a few unladylike expletives) as it took over a half hour to get his blog, AOL and all the other programs closed in order to restart my computer. My “control-alt-delete” keys got a workout. Another lesson learned or should I say “relearned.” Be suspicious of all your e-mails unless you know for sure who it is from! I was lucky this morning but that may not always be the case.

A quick note on my sister, Dixie. She has been moved from the hospital and is now in a nursing home, rehab center. Yesterday, for the first time since her fall, I had a long telephone visit with her and she told me she is making progress. Tiny, baby-step progress but steps forward just the same! Good news …