Saturday, December 31, 2011

New Year's Eve

Yay - Bob & Ann got to the Ranch safely!!  Steve & Rhonda must have gotten home safely.  Linda & Al were leaving today.  Dave & I watched the Cyclone men's basketball game this afternoon and now we're seeing in the new year the same way we usually do.  We'll go to bed early and skip all the festivities!!  Every year for the last 21 has come in regardless of whether we stayed up until midnight or not!!  Sounds like we're getting old, doesn't it?!

It was 65 degrees in Des Moines today - about 57 here.  Although the wind was blowing pretty hard, so it didn't exactly feel that warm.  I have friends who said their daffodils and crocus are coming up!  Boy, are they in for a rude awakening!!  We're supposed to have a day or so of cold weather and then back into the 40s before we leave for points south!

Happy New Year to all of you!  See you next year!!  More later...

Friday, December 30, 2011


I've had a good day...however, about 3:00 it got icky!  I am really bummed.  I thought my Cyclones could beat Rutgers, but maybe there was a Yankee curse on them or something.  We just didn't play our type of was really disappointing.  Bad way to end a year.

It rained here today, but it was still mild.  Tomorrow it is supposed to be around 56 degrees - and it's December 31st!  What a nice December we've had!

Today Dave finished caulking our bathtub and he cleaned the shower doors with white vinegar.  He's so good! Then he put everything back together.  I get to use my own shower tomorrow morning - yay!!  Tomorrow he's going to work Habitat, so I'm just hanging out.  I'm hoping staying off my feet will help my knee heal!

More later...

Thursday, December 29, 2011

I'm tired of this!!

We had a beautiful day here!!  It was in the mid 50's...hard to believe that it's Dec. fact, it's still 43 aqt 7:30 PM!

I'm tired of my knee hurting!  I talked to my surgeon the other day.  He put me on ibuprofen 3x a day after meals..and it still hurts.  The ONLY time it doesn't hurt is when I'm sitting in my chair with ice on it!  I guess I need to pretend that I just had surgery and stay off of it for 3-4 days in a row...then maybe it would get better faster.  If it doesn't get better soon, I'll probably have to have a shot in the knee - yuck!  That just doesn't sound pleasant at all!!

I worked on paperwork today.  I got all of it filed so I can bring everything with me for tax season.  Sounds like fun, doesn't it?  We took things over to Bob & Ann's today so they could pack their car for the trip back to the Ranch.  They're leaving bright and early tomorrow!  I'm ready to go back too...too bad we've still got another week!  Next year we'll plan differently!

More later...

Wednesday, December 28, 2011


I had a massage today and did I ever need it!  I haven't had one since before my surgery back in November!  My shoulders were tight, my back was tight, and needless to say, my knee was tight!  I'm pretty sore tonight, but it's a good sore.  I hope I sleep well!

I'm reading The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo on my Kindle.  It's nothing like I thought it would be.  I don't know for sure what I expected, but I didn't expect intrigue!  I'm also reading Enchanted by Nora Roberts.  I'd started it before I got my Kindle, so I read it at night and "The Girl" during the day!!

Rhonda and family took off today to go back to Texas.  I hope they travel safely!

My mind is tired tonight.  I know I had several things I was pondering, but I can't think what they are!  We've got to take a little box over to Bob & Ann tomorrow, plus our plants and my Gulf photograph.  I sure hope they have room for them, but if they don't it's not a big deal.  I'll try to keep the plants alive until next year when we drive down again.  As for the picture, I could hang it up here, but I envision it in Florida with us.

More later...

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Good Day for Resting

Today was a good day for resting!  Dave and I both got a little nap in our chairs this afternoon.  I played with my Kindle for quite a while before I fell asleep.  I actually got it all set up, entered my gift cards, ordered a couple of books, and started reading one of them already!  What an easy way to read.  It's so lightweight!!  I also got online and ordered Dave a Kindle Fire.  It'll be in Florida when we get there!  I think he'll really like it! He can order his own books and we cane even share them with each other (if the author/publisher allows sharing).  Fun!!

Here are some pictures of my family taken yesterday at our family Christmas.  The first is of my three nieces - beautiful, intelligent, wonderful young women!  They are from L-R, Linda, Vicki and Rhonda.
This picture is of my "greats" - my great nephew, Kyle, his fiance (Cassie) on his great nieces in front - Cheyenne, Allison and Kaylee.
And, last but not least, this is a picture of Kaylee and Vicki "snooping" see, all of the packages are behind the tree - so I caught them trying to find packages with their names on them.  Vicki, can't you wait??
We had a really great day yesterday.  Kaylee has to be in Denver tomorrow for orientation.  She's a junior at Wartburg and her spring semester will be spent in Denver.  She is taking two classes and will be doing an internship at the Y there.  One of her classes is a required religion class and one is a writing class - based on her experiences during her stay in Colorado.  She thinks they'll be going to help various churches with homeless shelters and soup kitchens, etc.  Should be fun for her.  Her best friend/roommate is also going, so hopefully she won't get homesick.  She'll be back home about April 4th.  Linda and Al were taking her to Colorado today and tomorrow, staying in Kearney, Nebraska tonight.  Rhonda, Steve, and Cheyenne are leaving for Texas tomorrow I think.  Keep them all in your prayers for safe travels.

More later...

Monday, December 26, 2011

Lovely Day

I  can't remember the last time we went to Bob's for Christmas and only wore light jackets or sweatshirts!  Well, we did today!  It was a beautiful day!!  It was also beautiful inside.  We had a lovely day with family and a wonderful Christmas!!  It started out with turkey, ham, dressing, mashed potatoes, gravy, noodles, corn, relish tray, apple salad, cranberry salad, deviled eggs, and rolls.  (I think I forgot something, but I can't think what!!)  Then chocolate ice cream pie (or Bob's pie as we affectionately call it!), pecan pie (Dave's pie from Dear Abby's recipe), and Apple Cream pie for dessert!  PLUS, there was candy and cookies to munch on!!  Quite a spread!!  Then we started opening packages...Oh my, that took us until it was dark outside!  I'll post pictures hopefully tomorrow - I'm too tired tonight!

More later...

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Merry Christmas 2011

We had a wonderful day today!  Got up early and Bryan had fixed bacon and scrambled eggs - yum!!  Then we all went to church where Pastor David gave a great sermon!  I really miss him when we're in Florida.  His sermons are so inspiring and thought-provoking!  I can't wait for the Evangelism Commission to get his sermons on the website!  Then I'll be able to be inspired even when I'm in Florida!

After church, Bryan and I came home early.  He went to wash his car and I made a cheesy hash brown casserole that was really good, if I do say so myself!  Bob & Ann came over for dinner.  We had pork chops with a mushroom gravy, steamed baby green beans with slivered almonds, the hash brown casserole, garlic bread, and Bryan's cranberry salad.  Then for dessert, I had made a key lime pie!!  Pretty good food for Christmas.  It was beautiful here.  I don't know how warm it got, but we were outside helping Bryan load his car to go home and we didn't even have to have coats on!  It was really a nice day!

Tomorrow is our big family day.  I can hardly wait to see my nieces and my "greats"!!  We're having lunch at noon and then after the dishes are done, the festivities will begin!!  Actually, I think I should call it a marathon instead of festivities!  Unwrapping presents takes HOURS!!  It's fun though and this year we'll have another family member - Kyle's fiance, Cassie, will be joining us!

More later...

PS - Oh, I had a cute thing said to me at church today.  One lady said I could sure tell that Bryan was your son...he looks just like you!!  I didn't tell Bryan - I don't know how he'd feel about that!!  I just thanked her and told her that I was his step-mother...she said her step son looked like her too!  Funny!!  Merry Christmas!

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Christmas Eve

Today was a beautiful day here in Iowa...about 45 and abundant sunshine  The really good part is that it's supposed to be like this for another 7 days or so!  I don't mind cold as long as it's not gray and icky!  Bryan got here today and we decided to have our Christmas exchange this afternoon.  After that we went to church for Christmas eve services.

The choir did a wonderful job with their carols.  It was a beautiful service.  Rhonda wanted to go with us, which was really nice.  So we had 4 of us in our pew!!  Then after church we went to Bob & Ann's for chili and/or oyster soup.  It was a great evening.

More later...

Friday, December 23, 2011

Almost here...

I can hardly believe that Christmas is almost here!  Dave wrapped all the packages today and I got the tree up and lit.  I also got through a ton of paperwork and got the menus all figured out with Ann.  This evening I worked on a grocery list for Dave to get in the morning.  He goes to HyVee for coffee with the guys early each morning, so he can get the groceries while he's there!

Bryan is coming home tomorrow and will be here to go to church with us on Christmas Eve.  He said he was planning to go home on Christmas day, after lunch some time.  So, we'll have our family Christmas on Christmas morning and then go to church.  After church Bob & Ann are coming over here for Christmas dinner.  Then Monday is our big family Christmas which will start with lunch at Bob & Ann's.  Oh my gosh, I've got a lot to do between now and Sunday at noon!!  I think I just panicked!!  

More later...

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Back in Iowa

Yes, we're back home in cold, windy, gray and brown, Iowa!!  Sounds awful, doesn't it?  It's not all bad!  It was 31 when we landed and 27 as we left Des Moines, all with a stiff wind from the north-northwest...yuck!  Tonight the wind has gone down, so it's not quite as bad as it was.

After we got home and looked in the refrigerator, we determined that Old Mother Hubbard's cupboard was bare, so Dave said, "Let's go get a tenderloin."  We went to the Recovery Room and one of their wonderful tenderloins and fries!!  Actually we each had 1/2 of a tenderloin, so guess what tomorrow's lunch is???  We came home from there and I took a nap...a 6 hour one!!!  I was pooped.  Dave was sick in the night last night, so I didn't sleep well either.  It was only 45 in our house when we got home, but it warmed up nicely while we were at the Recovery Room.  Our Tempurpedic bed was like a cement block, but when I laid down on it, I fell asleep almost immediately!!  While I napped, Dave got groceries.  Then later this afternoon, Rhonda and her family arrived from Texas.  Since they were here, we all went to the Club for supper.  It was good to see them and Cheyenne has gotten so tall!  She's 11 and a half now, and has really shot up this past year.  It was a busy night at the to see several people and wish them a Merry Christmas!

It's good to be home.  Tomorrow we've got to wrap packages and put up a tree!  As for now, it's bedtime again, so I'm going to get the flannels out and see you tomorrow.  More later...

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Going home!!

Tomorrow morning, bright and early, we're headed to the airport for our flight back to Des Moines.  We should arrive in DSM about 10:00 AM, give or take a few minutes.  I'm ready to go home, ready for Christmas, ready to see my family!  I finally got my Christmas cards out this afternoon and even got a few addressed to some of our neighbors down here.  I don't send out nearly as many as we used to, so if you don't get one from us, don't feel bad.  Mostly we send just to friends and relatives we don't see but maybe once a year. 

We had a nice surprise this morning.  Affordable Aluminum called to tell us that they were coming to put the vinyl windows in our lanai.  So, after coffee, we got busy cleaning up the lanai.  I also cleaned and vacuumed inside too.  At 11:45 I took Ron & Marsha to the airport.  Dave stayed here just in case AA came early...they didn't!  They showed up about 1:30 or so and were done by about 4:30.  OUR LANAI LOOKS WONDERFUL!!!  Love the windows, and especially like the door!  Merry Christmas to us!!  We took down the Christmas tree and put up the lighted palm tree, so when we get back down here we won't have but the front decorations to put away. 

Tonight, we're all packed and ready to go.  It's a little weird not packing any clothes.  I had a couple of Christmas presents to take home, plus some paperwork and some stuff we no longer need down here, like my Christmas stamp sets.  We should have some relatively empty suitcases when we return to Florida. 

That's it for tonight...more later...

Tuesday, December 20, 2011


This morning we went to bowling, but I didn't bowl.  My knee is still hurting, so I decided to just watch!  We all took snacks so this was kind of a Christmas party bowl!  Dave got a 148 today...good job, honey!  Tomorrow morning we'll find out if girls rule or if the guys won.  I have a feeling the guys won today. 

I had a pedicure this afternoon, so now my feet look really nice.  I think he cut my nails a little short, but they will grow out!  Regardless, they look nice.

This evening, we took our neighbors and went to this neighborhood off of BryanDairy Road to look at lights.  It was wonderful.  This is a whole neighborhood that puts out lights..then Hospice puts out maps, arrows showing which way to go, and had a spot where you can donate to Hospice.  Pretty cool fundraiser and beautiful lights!  Here are a few of the 50 or so pictures that Dave took while I drove. 

 At one house, one of Santa's helpers was passing out candy canes!
This was pretty cool - a lighted dirigible on wheels...with about 25 people on it.  They were having a wonderful time looking at the lights!
Tomorrow is coffee at the Ranch.  Then we'll come home and get things ready so we can leave the next morning.  We've got some "must-go's" in the refrigerator that we've got to do something with and we'll batten down the hatches and head out Thursday morning bright and early.  We're also taking Ann's brother and his wife to the airport tomorrow.  More later...

Monday, December 19, 2011


It's now T-2 and counting until we fly out to go home for Christmas.  We'll sure miss this wonderful weather.  We're sitting here with most of the windows open - it's just gorgeous - 66 degrees at 9:00 at night! 

Today we worked around here again.  I worked on Christmas cards and cleaned the shower and sinks in the bathroom.  I also rode my bike quite a ways today.  We had some excitement in the 'hood today.  The mobile home 2 doors down is being demolished, so we had a backhoe making lots of noise.  They got it half torn down...I'm sure they'll do the other half tomorrow.  Dave worked outside most of the day.  He moved a parlor palm, sprayed for bugs, sprayed for weeds, raked, transplanted two amaryllis and put down a bunch of mulch!  Oh, he also oiled our bikes, added baskets and a rear light to his.  I wonder what he'll find to do tomorrow!

Speaking of tomorrow, we've got bowling and bingo!!  Plus, I'm having a pedi at 1:00.  I plan to try to bowl again...  Also speaking of tomorrow, it's December 20th...that means my big brother has a birthday!  Happy birthday, Bob!  Hope you sell a BIG diamond on your special day!! 

Something else that is very interesting happened today.  Dave was talking to the lady who lives on the other side of the house being demolished.  She asked him a second time what his name seems her maiden name was Freshour and she's from Indiana!  Strange, huh??  Maury has always said that part of the family became Freshours and part Frushours when they got to Ellis Island. 

More later...

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Beautiful Sunday

This was another beautiful day!!  A "cold front" came through last night, though, so it was a little colder than it has been!  Now their cold fronts are nothing like the cold fronts that come through Iowa!!  In the cold fronts down here, it drops to the 50's over night and is 69 during the day!!  Actually it was 70 this afternoon, but it's been in the high 70's most of the time since we've been here! 

We went to church at Hope Presbyterian again today.  It was much better today...the kids had the program.  It was a cute story of Christ's birth.  It was from the viewpoint of the animals in the stable.  Cute!  Two or three of the kids had singing solos and all of them spoke.  After church we went to Walmart to get a few things.  Since my leg has been hurting so much, I was either going to stay in the car while Dave shopped, or try out one of those motorized shopping carts.  I chose the second option!  Once I figured out how to run the thing, it was a pretty good way to get around that, my knee didn't hurt from all the walking!  Betty, from here at the Ranch, came up behind me and asked me if I wanted to race - she was on a cart too! 

This evening, we had our baked potato dinner at the Ranch.  For $4, you got a HUGE potato and you could have any of several toppings - cheese, cooked onions, mushrooms, broccoli, chili, sausage gravy, salsa, chives, bacon bits - you get the picture!  Then for dessert there was chocolate - someone had put out assorted chocolates!  There was also fruit cups (left over from breakfast yesterday).  It was very good! 

Tomorrow we've got a few more things to do around here and I've got to get my Christmas cards out.  I wrote the letter today and printed the labels.  I just have to put it all together tomorrow!  Plus, I want to clean up the lanai a bit.  It's gotten kind of messy out there!  More later...

Saturday, December 17, 2011


After a great breakfast in the clubhouse, Dave and I went out searching for bedside tables and lamps.  After hitting 5 consignment shops and 4 thrift shops, we still have NO bedside tables and/or lamps!!  Anything we saw that we liked was way overpriced...and most everything else we didn't like at all!  So after several hours of shopping, we came home, went to and found out thaat we can order new things for about the same price we saw used today!  We'll be ordering when we return after the first of the year.

I finally had a chance to upload some of my pictures.  Here's Dave covering up the last of the yellow on the living room walls. The yellow was under the two layers of wallpaper that we removed. 
This is a picture of the colors we used.  They're so pretty and so different in the natural light and the evening artificial light.
 This is the dining room/kitchen finished and the living room finished:

These last two pictures are pictures I took at Lido Beach yesterday:  Dave and his first whiting and a beautiful blue heron who was waiting for throwaway fish!!  More later...

Friday, December 16, 2011

I'm Pooped

I am sooooo tired!  We went to Sarasota today so Dave and his dad could go fishing.  I went with them while Roberta went shopping with a friend.  We were at the beach from about 11:30 until 3:30!  That's a lot of sun and fresh air and both of those things make me really sleepy!  The guys caught and brought home 11 whitings!  They threw 4 other fish back - a flounder, a snake-like fish, a flying fish, and a baby whiting!!  It was a good day fishing!!  I had a pretty good day too.  I took my camera and got some pretty decent pictures of some birds - I think!  I'm too tired tonight to upload them - hopefully, I'll get them loaded sometime tomorrow.

We didn't get home until about 7:30.  After the guys cleaned the fish, we decided we'd better go eat somewhere.  There's a restaurant in Maury's park called Boon Docks.  They have good sandwiches, and we can eat outside.  That was good because I don't think the guys smelled very good after fishing and cleaning fish!  It was a lovely day for being on the beach! 

More later...

Thursday, December 15, 2011


The painting is DONE in the living room - yippee!!!  We've just finished moving the furniture where we want it!  It looks really nice - unfortunately, you'll have to take my word for it because I didn't get any pictures uploaded!  We're missing a curtain rod, so we've still got some curtains to hang in the living room.  We just can't figure out where that rod went to!  Gnomes!  As Dave calls them - I call them gremlins!  Maybe it's something about being from Indiana or Iowa! 

I've figured out my way around part of Clearwater-Largo...and my way to Sarasota.  Speaking of Sarasota, we're going there again tomorrow.  The guys are going to fish...Roberta is going shopping with Betty...and I'm sitting on the beach with my camera!!  My knee is starting to feel better, so I'm not going to jeopardize it again!  Plus, I'm getting a little sick of shopping!  I sure wish Ann was here, though  I need to find some bedside tables and some lamps at thrift stores and Ann's the queen of knowing where the best bargains are!  I've only found 1 thrift store so far!

More later...

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Wacky Wednesday

Wednesdays at the Ranch are pretty laid-back.  However, today after coffee, we had our annual cookie walk, where you could buy cookies, fudge, brownies, etc. for $3.00 a pound.  They had styrofoam containers for us to put our goodies in.  We filled ours and I thought it was pretty cost us $3.00!!  Yummy goodies!  I made and took about 4 dozen cookies - chocolate chip and macadamia nut cookies.  Good!  After the cookie walk, then we had our monthly meeting.  Today we had nominations for board members.  One of the people nominated was my brother.  Since he wasn't there, they asked me to speak for him about why he'd be a good board member.  I did a good job selling his virtues, much to Bob's chagrin!!  Since there were no other nominations from the floor, the 3 nominees are automatically board members.  I guess the other board members got together today and decided that Bob would be President next year!! 

Dave got all of the wallpaper off and half of the room painted today!  Tomorrow he'll finish painting.  Then I guess he's going to lay off for a while and finish up after we return in January.  I tried to take the wallpaper border off in the bedroom, but it didn't come off so well.  I doubt that it has sizing under, it could be awful to get off!  I haven't tried the bathroom wallpaper, but I'll be glad to get it off too. 

It was so nice out today that we ate both our lunch and dinner out in the lanai.  It was 75 degrees and just perfect out there.  After dinner we went for a bike ride just to look at the Christmas lights in the park.  They're judging the lights on Friday.  There are some really pretty ones!

More later...

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Tuesday at the Ranch

Tuesdays at the Ranch are for bowling and bingo, remember??  Well, we didn't bowl because Dave is Hell-bent on getting the painting done here and I'm still limping!  He got the hallway/kitchen painted and it looks really nice...very clean and bright!  He's got over half of the living room ready to paint tomorrow.  But tomorrow we've also got coffee and a monthly meeting, plus a cookie walk in the morning...I made about 5 dozen cookies, but I'm only taking about 3.5 dozen...the rest broke!  I haven't figured out this oven yet..It's a little too hot, so I have to either turn the heat down and add time to whatever's baking, or leave the heat the way it is and shorten the baking time.  Either way, I haven't got it quite right yet!

Here's a picture of the hallway and kitchen.  I don't know that you can see the colors properly.  After the curtains are up, I'll get another picture with the flash which should give you a better look at the color. 

Here's more yellow.  We think this is just sizing...the other side of the living room has white sizing, but for some reason this side is yellow. 
This is what Dave has to paint tomorrow.  I can't wait until this mess is done!!

By the way...I didn't win at bingo tonight...:(  More later...

Monday, December 12, 2011

Double Yay!!

Not only did Dave get the wallpaper backing off of the kitchen/hallway, but we also got all of the wallpaper (2 layers of it!) off of the living room.  So we get a double yay!!  Tomorrow, since Dave's back is so sore and my knee is so sore we're not going bowling.  We'll be here working on walls.  The hallway/kitchen is ready to paint.  The living room has to have the paper backing removed and then it'll be ready to paint!  Tomorrow night, I'm going to play bingo.  Dave will probably still be painting!! 

Wednesday morning we're having a cookie walk after coffee and our park meeting, so I've got to bake some cookies tomorrow too!  This weekend is the park breakfast AND on Sunday they're having a baked potato bar.  Busy, busy!!

I ran errands today and I also got my hair cut.  Dave drew me a little map so that I could find Walmart, Lowes, Target, and Great Clips.  I got in the wrong lane and turned before I got to Walmart, but I was able to get turned back and get into their parking lot with a little effort.  Right now we're watchin The Closer.  I hope we can stay up and watch Rizzoli & Isles too. 

More later...

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Before...and After!!

Yay, yay, yay!!  The add-on room is done except for adding quarter-round around the baseboard.  Here's a picture before the floor went in.

 Now the floor is in!
 And this is today!!  All done - this is looking north.
 And this is looking south.
Here's a picture of our living room after some of the furniture is gone!  Lots more room in here.  I think I'm going to move the couch to the wall where Dave is sitting and move the chairs to where the couch is now...we'll see!
After Dave got the baseboard on and we got the furniture in the add-on room, then he went outside and cleaned out his shed.  He even washed down the walls.  He'd come in every once in a while and we cleared out closets of "stuff" that Paulie had.  We put things outside and people come by and pick them up.  We are having trouble getting rid of the dirty recliner, however.  We may have to clean it and bring it back in :(!

I made some crockpot peanut clusters today, but they didn't turn out as good as usual.  At home I have a full-sized crockpot, whereas here I have a small crockpot.  So I only made a half a recipe...I think it almost burned so next time I won't leave it on for more than an hour.  I had it on low, so I figured it would be 2 hours before it would be done.

While Dave was outside this evening, I decided to pull off wallpaper from the kitchen.  I really wanted to keep going into the living room, but I didn't.  Now I've got to decide for sure what paint I want in there because I'm sure Dave will want to get started on those walls soon!
That's all for tonight.  More later...

PS - One of the couples from the Ranch went to the boat parade that we went to last night.  They sat for a bunch of hours in the Legion to see only 9 boats!  I guess it's a good thing we finally gave up!!

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Another Woohoo!!!

Woohoo!  My pick for the Heisman - Robert Griffin III from Baylor - won!!  I'm so happy for him AND for Baylor!  That's quite an honor!!  He is, in my mind, what college football is all about!! 

Dave and I had a busy day again.  We went shopping for a microwave - the one here kept burning our popcorn!  Dave said, "Nobody or nothing messes with my popcorn and gets by with it!"  Remember when microwaves cost $350 and were as big as a dorm refrigerator??  Now you can get them for $49 and they're very compact!  We first went to Bed Bath & Beyond - microwaves there cost $100.  Then we went to Walmart a block away from BB&B where we paid $49 for one!  We also found sheers for the add-on room.  Tomorrow Dave's going to get the trim on and we'll start putting the furniture back in the room - yay!!  I'm tired of being in a mess!

Tonight we went over to Indian Shores to see Sudi & Howard and to watch a boat parade.  The parade started at 6:00 south of them, so we figured by 7:00 or so we'd see it...NOT!  Then we waited until about 7:30 - still no boats!  Finally we just went to dinner!!  We went to Sloppy Joe's in Treasure Island.  Good place and cool t-shirts!  When we left S&H's we had to go by The Pub, which is where they were giving out the prizes for the parade.  We actually saw 3-4 boats there...I was beginning to believe there wasn't such a thing as a boat parade!  Did I hear someone compare them to snipes??  Anyway, from what we could see, they were really lit up!  Thanks S&H for a lovely evening...and for the cookies & coupon! 

More later...

Friday, December 9, 2011


We've got new laminate in the add-on room - and it's beautiful!!  I'll download some pix tomorrow, but right now I'm trying to "hear" about the ISU-Iowa men's basketball game and the UNI football game! 

Today the guys - Dave, Ron and Alan - started laying our new laminate about 9:00 11:20 or so they were done!  I can't believe how fast that stuff goes down!  I went out "exploring" while they were working and on the way home I stopped to pick up pizza for the workers!  Good thing I got home early, since they were basically done when I got here. 

This afternoon, we had "happy hour" at the ranch!  There were only about 23 of us there, but it was fun.  Tonight Dave worked on painting the woodwork.  Tomorrow he's going to try to get the doorsills done and put up the woodwork.  Then tomorrow night we're going to Sudi & Howard's to watch the boat parade!!  Should be fun!!

Woohoo!!  Indian Hills BB wins!!  Woohoo!!  ISU beats Iowa in men's basketball!  More later...

Thursday, December 8, 2011


This morning was really cold!  I didn't get up very early, but it was only 45 when I got on the computer.  I did wear shorts today, with a long-sleeved t-shirt.  It ended up being 63 out - a beautiful day!!  It was sunny all day long - in fact, it's still 63 outside!

My knee hurt really bad last night.  I guess I shopped too much!  When I woke up my knee still hurt very badly, so Dave made me sit down most of the day.  I did go out and ride my bike around the block this evening, just to loosen my knee a bit!  I'll probably take a pain pill again tonight, just to make sure I can sleep. 

Tomorrow the guys are going to work on the floor of the add-on room.  I can hardly wait to get that room put together.  Right now the queen-sized bed is standing on end and being propped up by the dining room table.  The computer desk and everything else out of that room is in the living room.  It's chaotic in here!  Ron thinks they'll get the floor done before happy hour tomorrow - yay!!!

More later...

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Long Day!!

This was a long day, but a really fun one!  We left for Sarasota at 9:00 this morning.  It's a really easy drive there!  Dave and his dad took off right away to go fishing on Lodi Beach.  They had some luck, but not enough luck - they didn't bring home enough fish for a fish fry!  They each caught 2 fish and the Mennonite guy right next to them caught 8!!  They must not be living right!  Anyway, the important thing is that they had fun fishing!  Maury said he caught a flounder and a flying fish, while Dave caught a whiting and a flying fish...a flying fish????  I guess I'll have to look that one up - I've never heard of a flying fish!  Flying pigs, yes...flying fish, no! 

While the guys were off fishing and eating their peanut butter and pickle sandwiches, Roberta and I went shopping.  We went to Beall's and then decided we'd better have lunch.  We hit a little Italian restaurant called Papa Giorgio's where we split a margharita pizza.  It was really, really good!!  We had to wait for a long time, but it was worth it...I love margharita pizza!  For those of you who've never had one, they don't have anything whatsoever to do with margharitas - they have very little tomato sauce on a relatively thin crust.  Then they have sliced tomatoes, basil, and fresh mozzarella cheese...wonderful!  After lunch, we went shopping some more - first to Dress Barn, then to SteinMart and Bed, Bath & Beyond.  We shopped until we dropped!  I found a lighted palm tree for our lanai - it was originally $119 and I got it for $59. 

It was a beautiful day to either shop or fish.  It got up to 82 degrees.  Then, about 4:15 the "cold" front came through with a misty rain and winds.  It dropped to 59 degrees in about 45 minutes.  We had left all the windows open in the house and we'd left the big coffee table and several silk poinsettias outside for people to pick up free.  We were hoping that poinsettias weren't flying around the Ranch and we were hoping that the coffee table wasn't ruined.  We didn't see any poinsettias or the table when we got back, so evidently people picked them up and took them home!!  Yay - that's a few more things disposed of!! 

More later...

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Tuesday are busy at the Ranch

Tuesdays are B days at The Ranch - bowling and bingo!  Dave and I went to bowling this morning, along with about 20 other people.  Bowling basically sucked, although I did feel more comfortable delivering the ball today....I think if I do this enough, I'll get my form back.  However, it's going to take some time...and my OWN ball and shoes!  I threw an 11 # ball today - it was too light.  I then threw a 12# ball - the thumb hole was too big so I had a hard time holding onto the ball...aarrggh!  So, my scores were horrible!! 

We came home, measured the aqua room, and then went to Floor Decor and purchased laminate for the room.  Dave and Ron moved the big couch outside and the neighbors claimed it - yay!  We moved the brown chair & ottoman outside and another person claimed it - yay!  We then moved the large coffee table outside - no one has claimed it yet - boo!  Then Dave tore out all of the carpet and padding - there's concrete under it all.  It (the concrete) really stinks!  It'll air out tomorrow while we're gone.  We're going to Sarasota tomorrow...didn't get to go today because Maury & Roberta had doctors appointments today.

Tonight, then, was bingo.  Dave stayed here and finished up cleaning out the aqua room and took the carpet & padding up to the dumpster.  I won 2 games - $48!!  I'm really feeling rich - ha!!  At least I can play 5 more weeks!!  More later...

Monday, December 5, 2011

Big Day!

This was a big day for us...we got so much done today!!  I worked on cleaning out cupboards (and washing them down) while Dave painted the rest of the yellow room!  It's NO LONGER YELLOW!!!!

Now it's a very pretty, cool aqua-ish blue!!  Dave also started pulling up the carpet, so tomorrow after bowling, we're going to a floor store to see about picking a laminate for that room.  When Dave got done painting, he came out and helped me get stuff out of the cupboards.  We got all of the upper cupboards cleaned and cleaned out.  We took 3 boxes full of "stuff" that we didn't want down to Sandy to put in the Chinese auction in January.  There's still a bunch of stuff to take to her, but we don't have boxes to put the "stuff" into!!  Hopefully we'll get more of it out of here soon!

Tomorrow we're going to go bowling...I'll see how my knee does with bowling!!  More later...

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Delightful Sunday

Today was an absolutely gorgeous day...and it was Sunday too!  A perfect day to worship the Lord!  We weren't planning to go to church today, but Dave got up, looked at the soon-to-be-aqua room and decided we could go to church.  So, we found the closest Presbyterian Church and went!  It was like being in a small, old-fashioned country church, only we're in a big town and the church building itself is new.  They had a woman pastor with one of those voices that is kind of like scraping fingernails on a blackboard!  There were 23 people in their choir...and they were awful!  There was one lady (I couldn't pick out which one) who had the strongest voice, but she was about 1/2 a step off key and all the others were somewhere else - either 1/2 step up or 1/2 step down...oh, my!  The Pastor's sermon was good - it was about John the Baptist, the people were friendly, but I just didn't like it much.  Dave thought it was fine - very homey!  I actually missed the contemporary touches that we have - praise music and a fantastic preacher!  The congregation was mostly elderly...the couple who sat behind us had been together 64 years.  She asked us at least 15 times where we were from...and told us she was from Massachusetts and her husband was from Texas!  He kept telling her, "Honey, you've asked that same question 10 times already...they're from Iowa!"

After church we went to lunch at the Columbia restaurant on the Intercoastal...a gorgeous day for sitting in the sun!!  Then on the way home, we stopped at a yard sale just to see if they had any small end tables.  It was horrible...I wouldn't have had anything they had for sale.  The furniture was chewed up and falling apart. 

Then we came home and Dave touched up his painting.  We put ceiling tiles back in half the room, moved the furniture to the painted side of the room, cleaned out the carport, and Dave started tearing wallpaper border off the other half of the room.  Tomorrow he'll paint that half and by Tuesday we should be able to put that room together.  Wednesday we're planning to go to Sarasota...Dave and his dad are going fishing!  I wonder what Roberta and I will do???  Bealls, watch out!  More later...

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Football Saturday

I can't believe that I'm in Florida and actually got to watch the Cyclone football game!  We played really well, I thought!  K-State is ranked #11 in the nation and either they didn't play like a #11-ranked team OR we are better than our record shows!  We played them pretty evenly and ended up down by 7.  I wish we could have won it!  Anyway, I'm proud to be a Cyclone!  This football season was a lot of fun - a victory over Iowa after a triple OT game, a victory over Okie State when they were ranked #2 in the nation, a victory over Texas Tech when they were ranked #17 in the nation!!  Throw in there games against Texas ranked #10, Baylor ranked #22, Oklahoma ranked #7 - what a schedule.  To be able to win 6 games with a schedule like that is wonderful!  Love those 'Clones and Coach Rhoads!!  Fun, fun, fun!!! 

Dave and I got some things done today.  We got all of the ceiling blocks painted twice, plus Dave got the wallpaper off of 2 walls, got the holes filled, and is ready to paint tomorrow!!  We also got the Christmas lights lit outside, cooked a wonderful supper, and just had a great day! 

More later...

Friday, December 2, 2011

Back home again...

We're back in Clearwater!  We left Ft Lauderdale about 9:30 this morning and got back here early this afternoon.  Dave went out to get groceries and some stuff for removing the border in the "yellow" room.  So, tomorrow, we'll start working in there.  He got the paint for the walls and for the ceiling tiles.  I'll paint the ceiling tiles while he works on the walls!  I can hardly wait to get rid of all that yellow!!

I bought us a bedspread in Ft Lauderdale, so our bedroom is now complete until we get all the other painting done.  I washed dishes when we got here and washed down walls in the kitchen.  As soon as I get a couple of big boxes, I'll start going through drawers, etc., getting rid of stuff that we're never going to use.  I guess the park has a big rummage sale sometime in January, so hopefully we'll find room to store some of the things we no longer want!

More later...

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Last day here for a while.

Today is our last day in Fort Lauderdale for a while.  It was a beautiful day here.  We finished our shopping so we were able to have Christmas with the grandchildren before we leave in the morning.  I hated to see Jami's face tonight.  She is very sad that we're only here for a weekend...she loves having her family around.  We'll miss her too!

Tomorrow we head back to Clearwater.  Check out from here is 10 AM so we'll be on our way about 9:45 AM!  We have to stop over at Jami's before we leave.  I borrowed a plastic cup from her cupboard - it's a Thomas the Train cup - and Danny asked me about it tonight!  He is so funny!  He told me I couldn't keep it that he needed it!! 

After that we need to fill up the car - there's $3.25 gas at the Hess station at A1A and Oakland Park, so we'll head there for gas, then go by the pretty beaches, out to 595.  More later...

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Beautiful, Beautiful Day!

Fort Lauderdale has some of the most beautiful weather and the most beautiful scenery ever!  This morning we were up very early taking Bryan to the airport.  Hopefully he got home okay.  Dave talked to him about an hour ago and he was about 50 miles from home.  He had a really good time down here with his sister and her family - and us!  He's even planning a return trip - only this time they're all coming to Clearwater! 

After we dropped Bryan off, Dave and I went shopping for gifts for the kids from us and from Maury/Roberta.  These 3 little kids are almost impossible to buy for - they want for nothing and don't really want anything!  The girls have never been into dolls, so you can't even get them Barbies!  They also have more than enough clothes...aarrrggggghhhh!  Tomorrow we're going to finish up with them, even if it kills me!!

We will pick the kids up about 4:00 again tomorrow.  That'll be our last time this year...bummer!  More later...

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Oh my...

This was a very busy day for us!  We had our appointment with the sales office at 9:00.  This appointment isn't supposed to take more than 45 minutes - ha!  That's a always takes a long time!  Bryan picked us up at 11:20!!  We decided even though it was cloudy, we wanted to eat at Shooters.  This is Bryan's last day here so he wanted Key Lime pie.  We got to Shooters and found out they no longer have Key Lime pie - they are under new management, have a new "fancy" chef, who fixes key lime broulee (not free) and their "free" dessert is now a brownie sundae.  It was good, but nothing extraordinary...and not even "Florida-like"!  Disappointment!  The sun did come out while we were there, though!

By the time we got back to Jami's it was 15 minutes until I had to pick up the girls.  The rest of the day was spent fixing supper and babysitting!  We didn't get back here until 10:00.  We have Bryan with us tonight.  We'll take him to the airport at 8 in the morning for a 10:00 flight back to reality.  We'll miss him - it's been a fun week!

More later...

Monday, November 28, 2011

Monday thoughts

We had a great day today.  Woke up to a cloudy sky and a nice breeze, but the clouds soon left and we were left with a beautiful, sunshine-y day!!  I got to be lazy this morning.  Dave went over to Jami's and left me here.  He and Bryan had some honey-do's for Jami so they've been working on those.  They came over to pick me up about noon.  So I got to just hang out all morning!! 

Here's a picture we took yesterday of the whole family.  Danny was starting to get a little perturbed by the picture taking, but other than that, it's a pretty good picture!  Today we picked the kids up early - the girls got to be car riders and they love that!  Danny was taking a nap when Bryan and Dave got there, so he wasn't quite as happy to see us!  After a little while, he got to playing Angry Birds on the IPad, which made him happier!  The kids went outside and rode their bikes for a while and when Jami got home she rode with them!  Kelly had soccer practice, so supper was in shifts.  Since it is a school night, we came home about 8:15.

Tomorrow we go to our Wyndham update at 9:00 AM, so I've got to get up a little earlier than I like!  Then back to Jami's for more honey-do's.  We'll pick up the kids early again, but we'll wait a little later to get Danny so he can get his nap done before we get there!  More later...

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Another beautiful day in Paradise!  We went to church this morning with Dad, Roberta and Bryan.  That was really nice to have family with us.  The church wasn't as full as usual, but it's a holiday weekend so I'm sure some people were traveling.  Tullian was there and gave a really good, thought-provoking sermon based on Ecclesiastes 12.  After church we went to Jami's, took some family pictures, ate lunch and then took Dad & Roberta out to I-75 to go home.  Dave and I were pooped so we came back to the condo and took naps.  Then about 6:00 Jami, Bryan and the kids came over and we made our initial trip to Razzleberry's!   The area of Atlantic where Razzleberry's is has changed.  They've widened the sidewalks, planted palm trees, and are starting on a park across the street east of the Briney Pub.  The rum raisin ice cream was still wonderful!  Kelly and Danny ate all of their ice cream - Megan never eats all of hers. 

Dave and I are just hanging out now, waiting for bedtime!!  He's reading and I'm playing!  Dad & Roberta got home safely and it was just a lovely day!  More later...

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Today was a fun day!  Kelly played soccer this morning early and since they won, they played again this afternoon.  Unfortunately, they weren't so lucky this afternoon.  They got beat this afternoon 3-0.  Even though they got beat, Kelly played really well and her coach told her to just keep doing what she's doing!  She seems to be around the ball and can pass and dribble really well.  She's also one of the top scorers but she didn't get a goal today!  It was a gorgeous day to sit out at a soccer tournament!  The rest of the day was spent just enjoying being with family! 

Yesterday on our way here we saw something that gives new meaning to roadkill!  Along the side of the road, dead, was a black bear!  We went another 5 miles or so and on the other side of the road, dead, was a wild boar!!  It was sure a lot different that seeing a dead raccoon or opossum like we normally see at home! 

Tomorrow we're getting up to go to Coral Ridge Presbyterian to hear Pastor Tullian...anyway I hope he's in the pulpit.  Every time Maury & Roberta have been with us, Tullian has been out of town.  We'll pick Bryan up because he wants to go too!  Then we'll eat lunch and Dad/Roberta will take off for Sarasota.  We've really had a good time! 

More later...

Friday, November 25, 2011

Saw Jami and the kids tonight - also Bryan.  Busy, busy - more later...

Thursday, November 24, 2011

My computer battery is low so this may really be short!!  Happy Thanksgiving to everyone.  I feel that we are truly blessed and thank God for that every day!  Today was a fun day - Dave got several things done on the to-do list and this afternoon we ate Thanksgiving dinner with our new friends in the park and our old friends, Sudi & Howard! 

Tomorrow we pick up Maury & Roberta and head for Jami's to see our family!  Bryan got there last night so we're looking forward to seeing everyone in Ft. Lauderdale!!

More later...

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Finally, we have internet access!!  We bought a router so that we could sit in the living room and "surf" but I didn't get it set up right for some reason.  I'll work on that another day!!  Today we did some shopping - we bought 2 ceiling fans, mattress pad for our new bed, the router, a new kitchen faucet because the old one was leaking big time, and, of course, some tools to use to get these different things done...oh, and a bottle of whiskey so Dave can get primed!!  The sun room needs all new mini-blinds, plus paint, so that'll be next! 

We took Bob & Ann to the airport.  Their plane was late, but at least they got out tonight...that was doubtful there for a while.  I walked probably 2-3 miles today so my leg is really hurting tonight!  Ann took my stitches out before we took them to the airport...that was a relief to get the stitches out.  Poor knee - another trauma!!

Tomorrow we're having Thanksgiving here at the Ranch.  Sudi & Howard are coming over.  The Ranch is hosting the meal for $5 and it's turkey and all the trimmings!!  Should be good!  Happy Thanksgiving to all of you!  We have so much to be thankful for.  God's blessings are wonderful!  More later...

Monday, November 21, 2011

Monday in Florida

We made it to Perry, Florida today! We drove thru HEAVY rain and thunderstorms all the way through Tennessee, but thank God, we made it safely. There were wrecks everywhere! We're about 3 hours from our holiday home, so tomorrow should be an easy day! We're hoping to get there, get unpacked, and then have lunch with Bob & Ann.
Weds we take Bob & Ann to the airport...I wish they were staying longer! Since we're just getting here, it would be fun to have some time with them before they leave. Thursday, we're planning to have Thanksgiving dinner with Sudi & Howard...I hope they've scoped out some place to go for dinner!
More later...

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Saturday, November 19th

I'm so confused!! The Cyclones played football yesterday, which should have been Saturday because we ALWAYS play on Saturday! What a game!!! Then Dave was home all day, so I thought this was Sunday!

Tomorrow we're planning to leave for points South! That is, if I feel as well as I do now! I've not used my crutches much today and I've only taken 1 pain pill. Dave's got the car mostly loaded and we're not getting to take everything we wanted to take :( ! My having to have my leg up has caused a problem with loading the car!! Oh well, we'll make do without some things!!

More later...

Friday, November 18, 2011

Better Today!

I typed something on my blog last evening, but for some reason it didn't save it. It's in the edits page, though...hmmmm?? I hope this one goes, cause if not I'm going to have to find a new blogger!!

I feel much better today. I took a pain pill at 10:00 this morning but haven't had one since. I even took a shower! I made it up the stairs last night and down them this morning. I've had ice on my knee for quite a bit of the day and now I'm watching my Cyclones play football. We're down by 10 to the Oklahoma State cowboys - the #2 ranked team in the nation! I just hope we stay close. I feel sorry for Okie State - they had a plane go down in Arkansas killing two of their women's basketball coaches. We had that happen while I was still at Iowa State. That crash killed 2 coaches and several cross country runners, plus the pilot who was a friend of the athletic department.

Dave packed some today. We're hoping to leave Sunday morning! I'd better go now. Dave is doing play by play of the ballgame for me!! More later...

Thursday, November 17, 2011


It was sure good to get home this afternoon. I sat in the backseat with my right leg up on a pillow on the seat!! We stopped once to get gas, so I was able to get out of the car and walk around with the aid of my crutches. This evening, it's a little easier to get around without the crutches. It's good to have them - I feel a lot more confident with them than without!! Hopefully tomorrow will be even better! I'm planning to go up the steps one time tonight just before bedtime. I just took some pain pills so I'm really fading fast.
More later...

Monday, November 14, 2011

Monday, Monday

Another shorts day in SE Iowa! It was in the 60's again!! Beautiful!! I had church meetings today and tonight, but got home in time to watch most of DWTS! I didn't vote tonight - I had some paperwork I was doing and wanted to finish it. Now I'm heading for bed!

We'll leave for Storm Lake about 9 in the morning, so I won't get to sleep in tomorrow!! It's about a 4.5 hour drive, but we'll want to stop for lunch and my appointment with Steve is at 2:15. Hopefully Dave remembers how to get to the hospital, because I don't! I'm sure my surgery will be early Wednesday and I'm really ready to get it over with!!

More later...

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Sunday's Thoughts

Today was a great day - it was in the 60's here. We had a really strong wind blowing in from the South, though, so it got a little chilly when you stood around. I didn't wear a coat to church though, and I really didn't need one. Don went home when we took off for church. Too bad - he would have enjoyed church today! It was come-as-you-are or casual Sunday. Even Pastor David had on jeans! It was also fill the pews Sunday and we had a really good crowd! I think we had 12 or 13 little kids up front for the young disciples sermon!! Our choir sang a hard song and sang it a capella and I think we stayed on pitch!!

After church Dave and I went Christmas shopping and were able to get my nieces presents, and got the men partially done. I sure would like some ideas for my brother and sister-in-law...hint, hint, hint!!! At least we've got a good start now!!

This evening Craig & Sue came in and brought pizza. It was good to sit around with them - it'd been way too long! Tomorrow I've got Bible Reading, a massage, Evangelism meeting, and Disciples! Hope I get everything else done too! More later...

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Super Saturday!

I enjoyed myself today! Dave and Don went to work at the Habitat house and I worked on cards. I also went shopping and got my secret sister's present. I'm going to try to deliver it tomorrow. If I get that done and get all of my items cut out for our stamp camp, then I'll be ready to go to Storm Lake for my surgery. When I get home I can get my packing done and then we'll be ready to go to C'water!! Although today was beautiful here - about 60 - it was in the 80's in C'water, so I'd rather be there!!

We went to the club tonight for dinner. Great food!! Then we came home and started watching "Open Range" with Kevin Costner and Annette Bening! Great movie!! Kevin Costner makes a great cowboy!!

While I was talking to Bob tonight, Linda called with updates on how Kaylee's team was doing in the national tournament. They won last night, but they ended up getting beat tonight in sudden death. It's too bad, when teams are that closely matched, that both teams can't advance!

Don just went up to bed, Dave's yawning and I'm about ready to crash too. Tomorrow's church and then an afternoon to get some things done while the race is on!! More later...

Friday, November 11, 2011

Friday Thoughts

Another beautiful day with abundant sunshine!! How lucky we are! We could have snow or at the very least, extremely cold!

Dave helped me this morning and we cleaned this entire house! He ran the vacuum cleaner and the steamer while I cleaned the bathrooms, the kitchen, and dusted the entire house! It looked pretty good until we fixed supper. Dave and Don have been imbibing a bit and now the floor needs swept again! They're in the living room talking, talking, talking!! It's hilarious! I couldn't possibly get a word in edgewise, so I'm in here blogging!! If they get quiet, I'm sure they'll be sleeping in their chairs!

Tomorrow Dave and Don are going to get up and fix eggs and bacon for breakfast and then they are going to work at the Habitat House. That should be lots of fun! Don's a designer and he thinks things should be done a certain way...whereas at Habitat, they just get things done, regardless! I'm glad I won't be there!!

I'm going to work on some SU stuff - Juliene and I need to get our P's & Q's going for next week's stamp camp. I'm hoping we're ready, but I'll find out in the morning! More later...

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Pretty Day

It was another pretty day here...a little chilly, but abundant sunshine!! Can't complain about that!!

I had errands to run this morning. I got them done and then called a friend and we took off for Cantril. It was a beautiful day for a drive! I was able to get everything I wanted except for a beef roast - I didn't like the looks of theirs. I got my popcorn to take to Florida with us and, of course, some chocolate for the next few days!! Coming home, I drove Mary through Libertyville and past the house where we grew up. Then I came back to O-town through Batavia. It was just a day for a drive! For some reason the Amish kids weren't in school today...there were no boots outside on the front porch and no one inside the school. There were 3 buggy-types at the school, but no horses. I wonder why they wouldn't have school today? We only saw 1 horse/buggy on the road too...and it was driven by a young boy, probably 12-13 years old. Odd...

Tomorrow Don (Dave's twin brother) is coming from Indiana. His wife is going shopping with some of the cousins (a ladies weekend) so Don's coming here. He and Dave are going to work at the Habitat house on Saturday. Tomorrow I've got to dust and run the vacuum. I sure wish I still had my cleaning lady!! Dave is finished working at Golden Furrow (for the winter) so he will help.

I talked to Bob & Ann today. Since they're already in Florida it really made me wish I was there too. It won't be long now, hopefully! More later...

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

What a day!

When I woke up this 6:00 AM :( - it had been snowing. The entire ground was covered in snow and they were calling for 1-3 inches of the white stuff. Thank goodness THAT didn't happen! By noon the snow was all gone and the sun was shining! It got up to 44 degrees, but the wind was really blowing, so it was pretty cold out. I didn't have to leave the house until 7:15 tonight when I went to choir. By then the wind had laid a bit and the moon was shining brightly! It's not an official full moon until tomorrow, but it sure is gorgeous!!

I was really tired today and still am! Yesterday's long day wore me out!! I'm planning to go to bed early, but right now I'm watching the CMA's. They're exceptionally good tonight!! Carrie Underwood is going to be tired of changing clothes! I have no clue how many outfits she's had on.

Tonight I'm pondering the Penn State fiasco and the Ottumwa election results...neither of which is good! I'm glad to see that Coach Paterno is resigning because I truly believe he had to know about all of this crap. I'm sorry, though, that he had to go out this way! All of those wins and good reputation for many, many years are now out the window. Too bad... As for the Ottumwa election, I can't believe we're going to have Flanders for Mayor. He's not what I think this town needs for a leader. I'd sure like someone young and ambitious and of outstanding character to lead our city...not Frank! As for Councilmen, I'm not excited about them either. I believe our city government is just going to be a laughing stock! What a joke!

More later...

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

City Election Day

I was at work this morning at 6:00 AM!! We had 489 voters and I'm really, really tired tonight! We were hoping to get 500, but we ended up 11 short. Our last voter came in at 8:00 PM sharp! It was a fun day because people came in steadily. We had times when we had about 10 people in line, waiting for us. Sometimes it's a hindrance using computers, but most of the time they're real lifesavers! Good crew today, too!

More later...

Monday, November 7, 2011

Church Day

Mondays seem to be church days for me. I always have Bible Reading Time at 10:30, and all of the commissions/committees that I'm on meet on Monday nights. So, I end up being at the church at least twice on Mondays. At least tonight I only had one commission meeting - Personnel!

We got home in time that I got to watch Dancing With The Stars. They're down to 5 couples and there's a definite division between #4 couple and #5 couple. It's Nancy Grace's turn to go home! Max and Hope did a beautiful job tonight!! So did JR & Karina. I think JR's going to win this. He's doing a great job dancing, plus he's got everyone all across America cheering for him. Ricki Lake and Derek are doing well too. Rob Kardashian isn't nearly as good as those other 3 either. So, tomorrow Nancy should go and then next week, Rob.

We had a beautiful day again today. I even had my window here by my computer open early this morning! When I came home from church at noon, I opened the sun roof on the car. You've got to be happy when it's November 7th and it's in the 60's outside!!

Tomorrow I work the polls again - so I have to be at work at 6:00 AM! More later...

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Sunday, Sunday

I love Sundays! It's a day when we get to see our church family and worship with them. Today's sermon was about the love of money, because it was Stewardship Sunday. Pastor David presented our church's need for money in a different way than I've ever heard...he talked about giving to bring others to Christ, not just to make our "budget". We had a new young couple at church today...he's a teacher at Evans. They have 1 little girl and another baby on the way. It's so good to have young couples in our church again...the sound of little ones talking during church is music to our ears!!

I am still re-living my weekend. After church I came home and went to bed. I am so tired and my knee is killing me!! I slept until 3-something. I sure hope I can sleep tonight!! I wanted to point out something in this picture. Look how short I am!! I never knew that Tony (far right) was so tall. I knew that Guy (behind me) and Tim (2nd from right) were really tall, but I'm still surprised at how short I am!!! I hadn't seen any of these 4 guys since about 1978 or so. Guy lives in Cape Girardeau, Dave (to my left) lives in Northern Iowa, Tim lives in Denver, and Tony lives in Atlanta! Soooo much fun!!
Today was a gorgeous day! In fact it's still 49 degrees outside - must have been 65 or so today! This week, however, they're calling for rain, colder temps, and possibly snow! Yuck! More later...

Saturday, November 5, 2011

What a fun weekend!!

We got back home from spending yesterday and today in Ames! We went up for the 2011 Football Letterwinners' game and reunion events. I had a blast!! We took our friend, Nan, with us so that Dave wouldn't have to just sit at the game and various events alone. As it turned out, I sat with them the entire game...most of the guys were in the same section we were. Friday night was a reception for about 3 hours, then today we had a tailgate tent and the game. It was beautiful sitting out at a game. Our seats were on the east side, so we had the sun in our faces all day...we also had a stiff wind, so my face feels windburned! We won the game - it wasn't pretty, but a win is a win!! Lots of fun!! I put about 100 pictures on my Facebook page, which seemed to take forever, but I got them done at least!

Right now I'm watch the ISU women's volleyball team play Kansas. Man, these ladies are good! They're making Kansas look horrible!

I'm exhausted; Dave's asleep in his chair! I think I'll just go to bed!! Go Clones!!

More later...

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Dreary then Nice!

This morning started out really, really dreary. I had to go have blood taken for my approaching surgery and when I went to the hospital, it was raining sideways!! At least it wasn't that 4-lettered "s" word!! By noon it had stopped raining and the sun was actually turned out to be a beautiful fall day! So I went from a coat this morning to just a sweatshirt this afternoon!

Tomorrow I've got PEO and a Dr. C appointment...then we're GOING TO AMES!! I can hardly wait. This is my weekend to enjoy some of my old football players! We're taking our friend, Nan too. She loves going to Cyclone games but doesn't want to go by Dave won't have to sit alone while I'm off socializing!

More later...

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Such a Change!!

Wow!! What a change in weather!! Yesterday it was in the 70's and right now it's 39 degrees, raining buckets and buckets, and the wind is really howling! Unfortunately, the "S" word is in the forecast for tonight and tomorrow...hopefully, little or no accumulation! I took these pictures yesterday and am I ever glad! The leaves were falling rapidly today! These are pictures of the maple tree in our front yard. It has been simply beautiful this year...usually it loses its leaves early, but not this year! Yesterday the sun was shining on it just right - the leaves looked almost transparent. While I was out taking pictures, I took a couple of shots of the last blooms of summer/fall! The mums around town are fantastic - huge mounds of delicious color!

Isn't this next one a fantastic shot - love the way the sun is shining on the leaves!!

This little bee was just working away!!

Today was a great day to stay inside. I even made autumn stew today! I'm trying to clean out the refrigerator. If I get it all used up, Dave'll have no choice but to take me out to eat, right???
More later...

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Gorgeous Day!

Today was a gorgeous day!! It was supposed to be in the 70's today and I'm sure it got there! Tomorrow, however, is another story...rain, a high in the low 50's AND possibly rain mixed with snow - yuck!! I'm glad I got outside to enjoy the day today! Poor Kaylee's soccer team plays tomorrow night in Waverly. So, you know if it's going to be that bad here, it'll be even worse in Waverly because it's so far north of here!

I was able to get our motel room and tickets for the Letterwinners' events this weekend, including the game. Right now the forecast is calling for 60 and cloudy. That won't be so bad to sit out in, although I think I heard that it's to be very windy too!

I got some of the cards we made on Sunday afternoon scanned today - I used my new scanner! It's lots faster than my old one!! This first card is one of my favorites. First of all I love this stamp set and I really like the blues she used. They are new in colors, both of them. The little round thing on the left of the card is a shake the card and the snowflakes (mica) are loose in there. Cool! All products in all of these cards are from Stampin' Up!!
This is the only card that I got done in less than 10 minutes. That's because it comes basically as it appears - without the sentiment. You stamp the sentiment on the little label and stick it on with dimensionals. Viola! You have a card. It's truly that simple!
This last card is done with a background of More Mustard. The Garden Green and the Early Expresso are layered behind the designer paper squares which have been corner-rounded on two sides. The squares are made with the 1 1/4" and 1" punches. The flowers are made with the Boho Blossoms punch, I believe, and are fastened together with a brad. The sentiment is from Day of Gratitude. Love this card!!
I went to give blood today and, since I'm having surgery soon, they wouldn't take my donation. So now I'm scheduled to give blood on 12/27 when I'm back for Christmas. I did, however, get my flu shot...and you know what, this shot hasn't hurt at all! That's a first because usually flu shots make my arm hot and achy!

More later...

Monday, October 31, 2011

A Run-Around Day!

Today was one of those days when I didn't get anything done here at home - I had errands to run and I ran around ALL DAY!! This morning I went to Bible Reading Time. We had wonderful discussions today - we're only in the 6th chapter of Mark. We don't get through but about 10 verses at the most each Monday. Next time we'll be talking about the beheading of John the Baptist that Mark inserted in the middle of Jesus' sending the disciples out into the world to preach the Gospel.

After BRT, I went to WalMart - a big knee hurt really badly after that shopping experience. My printer quit yesterday, and my electric toothbrush hasn't been working but sporadically for the last week. Those were the reasons for my shopping trip. I got a new printer/scanner/copier for $49 - and it's an HP! I hope it lasts as long as my last one did!! My toothbrush was $79!! Weird, huh??!

I was able to come home for about 30 minutes, slam down a light lunch, and leave again for my appointment with Dr. Hill in Fairfield. I sure missed Sudi & Howard! If they hadn't left for parts South, I could have had lunch with them!! I got home about 4:15 and had to get my knee straightened out for a while. Then the doorbell rang with our little neighbor boys trick-or-treating!! Travis, who's 3, said trick or treat. I asked him what that meant and he said, "It means you're supposed to give us some candy!" Dave didn't get home until about 7:15, but he got to see the next 3 little goblins. We only had 5 this year!

Tomorrow I have to make a bunch of phone calls and try to get caught up on some paperwork - yuck! More later...

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Great Sunday

I was was not Stewardship Sunday, so we didn't hear about money...that's next Sunday!! Today was Reformation Sunday, so we heard about Martin Luther and his efforts to reform the church. We need to change in order to stay vibrant and to attract new members, or we'll become like the OLD churches...still beautiful church buildings but only about 10-15 people attending!

This afternoon, Juliene and I went to Fairfield for a 10-10-10 party (make 10 cards, 10 minutes each, for $10). First of all, let me tell you that it took us more than 10 minutes per card!! The party started at 2:00 and we left there at 6:00, AND we neither one cut out the flowers that were to go on one card!! They are really cool cards, however, so we're glad we went!!

Tomorrow's another busy day. I have Bible Reading Time in the morning and an appointment with Dr. Hill in the afternoon. Sometime in between or after or something, I need to buy some Halloween candy for the little ghosts and goblins tomorrow night. We never have many, but we do have some little kids in the 'hood now, so I'd better be prepared! I also need to go to WalMart, but I doubt I'll get that done tomorrow.

We're planning to go to Ames for the ballgame this weekend, so I need to get tickets and rooms! I've got to get off this computer and get some things done!! More later...

Saturday, October 29, 2011


I sure liked the way the Cyclone-Texas Tech game came out!! Tech didn't act like a top 20 team tonight! I'd say we dominated!! It was really fun to be able to watch it - thanks FSN for broadcasting it!!

I enjoyed my day today. I didn't do much because my knee was really hurting. I turned down a chance to go to Libertyville to see Allison in the Halloween parade. Dave told me he was coming home after lunch. He thought he'd just work until noon - he didn't! He worked Habitat all day Thursday, Friday and, as it ended up, today. So I watched football. I love it when there are Big 12 games on TV! I had to turn from the OU game, though. I don't like Bobby Stoops' yelling at everyone! He practically undressed one of his players for making a mistake and causing a penalty! Geez, Coach, he's only human!! I mean, he was screaming at this kid! I don't like that!

This evening I helped Dave by typing up PM&I sheets for his display board for church tomorrow. Tomorrow is Stewardship Sunday, which means we're going to be hearing about money! I missed choir Wednesday night so I can't even remember what we're singing. I'll go early and refresh my memory. Dave and I are also doing the "visual" lesson at church tomorrow, which involves speaking a few lines and pounding nails into a door...

More later...

Friday, October 28, 2011

Is this Friday or Saturday??

I'm so confused on what day of the week it is! Dave has taken Thursday and Friday off to work on the Habitat house. The kids from Wartburg are here working, so he wanted to be there with them telling them what jobs to do. So, since Dave works Habitat on Saturday only...I've had 2 Saturdays this week!!

Today I got to go to stamp club. We worked on stencils today, which is something I've only done once...and I found out I did that all wrong!! So now, I'll try stenciling again - now that I know what I'm doing. There's just so much you can do with these stemcils. Today we not only added dimension to them by adding a gesso-type material, we also added glitter AND just pigment color to them, using a piece of fabric screen to add dimension. Very interesting techniques. I must say that our three projects are really nice. I'm anxious to make them into cards. When I get that done, I'll get them scanned so you can see them!

This evening, I went with Dave to have dinner with the group from Wartburg. Our friend, Larry, made his famous cream-can dinner! The kids seemed to really like it. This year, we had biology majors, education majors, an art major, and a couple of bio-chem majors. One of the biology majors is from Nigeria and the rest of the students were from Iowa. Fun evening!!

More later...

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Love fall!

I really love fall! I like the crisp air and the beauty of the trees. We've really been blessed this year...the trees are still pretty here and it's almost November! Usually by now we've had those cold fall rains and winds that make the leaves drop quickly. There are some advantages to drought!

Today I just took it easy. I put things away in my studio. After a stamp camp, it takes me a day or two to get everything sorted out and put away. I also finished up a medallion card. I had to have a little help on how to construct these medallions, but once I was told, it was easy...and logical! Tomorrow morning is the PMS stamp club at the church. We're going to work on using stencils so I'm really looking forward to learning a new technique. There are loads of supplies on the supply list, though. I feel like I loaded up my entire studio...and kitchen!!

Tonight Dave and I went to Sudi's for a '66 reunion wrap-up meeting. It was fun to see some classmates again. We're looking forward to our 50th reunion in 2016!!

More later...

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Change in the weather!

Yesterday it was 80 degrees and today we were lucky if we got to 56!! Big difference in temps. The oak leaves are beautiful - we always think the maple leaves are the prettiest, but not this year. The oak leaves around the cemetery are the most beautiful orange, with brown around the edges! Pictures don't begin to do them justice!

Today was a Stampin' Up kind of day! After an early start to my day - the UPS guy called at 7:40 this morning!! - I got up and got my shower taken so that he could deliver my new laptop! Then the rest of the day was devoted to SU! Juliene and I met to determine what we would do at our next stamp camp on November 17th. We decided on the cards and then we decided what all we needed to order. Then the hardest part of all - we worked on the financial part of the business. I got the orders done about 8:30 tonight. I even stayed home from choir and worked on all the paperwork. I'm trying to put together a worksheet (or spreadsheet) of what all I've spent and what is supplies for classes, etc. I am not very confident at these things so it takes me a while to do anything like this.

I talked to Dr. F's office this morning. My surgery is actually scheduled for November 16th, not the 15th. I'll see him at the Clinic on the 15th, then get fixed up the next day.

Dave's playing with my new laptop and I'm in here playing with this computer!! More later...

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Long, long day!

It's been a really long day. I had to be in Fairfield at 7:30 this morning for an MRI on my knee. Thank goodness it was my knee, because that MRI tube is really small around! I almost got claustrophobic even with my head and shoulders out of it. Anyway, I got that done and then I just had to wait for the we came back to O-town. Loren's funeral was at 10:00. What a beautiful's so nice when the officiant (in this case their minister) actually knows the deceased. She really did a great job "remembering" Loren! It was obvious that she knew him well! Today was his Loren's birthday...he would have been 85. Dave and I both went to the funeral and then I dropped Dave off so he could go to work while I went to the cemetery and to the luncheon. I'm glad I went to both. Craig and Sue were both very appreciative, but understood Dave's need to be at work.

About 4:00 this afternoon I called the Dr's office again (I'd called about 2:00 and they didn't have the results of my MRI yet). This time Dr. Hill's nurse told me there was no fracture, just arthritis and fluid buildup in the joint. I was pretty much shocked. I hung up and within a minute or two the phone rang. It was his nurse again...she told me that she had given me results of the xray, the MRI results weren't there yet. In the meantime, she had called for the results of the MRI and found out that I have a partial tear of the medial meniscus. When Dave found out, he called Dr. Steve and my surgery is scheduled for Nov. 15th. I guess we won't be going to Florida on Nov. 10th after all! I've got to call his office in the morning and get all the details worked out as far as time, etc. We'll go to Storm Lake on the 14th and stay with Steve then surgery the next day...hopefully very early in the morning. He may make us stay overnight on the 15th and then home on the 16th. I wish he was going to be in Iowa sooner, but he just left for Texas and the 15th is the earliest he can do the surgery. I guess I should have done this 2 months ago...I'd be healed by now! Hindsight is 20-20!!!

More later...

Monday, October 24, 2011

Beautiful Monday!

We had another beautiful day in SE Iowa! About 3:00 it was 73 degrees and 74 in Clearwater, Florida! Not bad for the end of October!! The forecast calls for one more day of this!!

I had a very, very busy day today. I had 5 ladies here this morning for a stamp camp. It was scheduled for 2 hours, but it lasted for 3.5!! It was a ton of fun, though! The ladies seemed to really like the cards and everyone enjoyed themselves!! I was tired though, because I stood up the whole I went upstairs at least 5 times during the 3 hours for things I'd forgotten!!

After class, I took off for Fairfield! Lunch with Sudi and then, an appointment with Dr. Hill! He ordered an x-ray of my knee, which is required before I can have an MRI on my knee. So, I had an xray before I left Fairfield. I have my MRI tomorrow morning at 7:30 in Fairfield!! That means I've got to get up waaaaaayyy early! As it turns out, Dave is going with me. We have to be at Loren's funeral at 10:00 back in O-town. I hope we're not late! His visitation tonight was crowded. We stood in line for about 45-50 minutes before getting to Craig & Sue.

I watched DWTS tonight. I feel sorry for Hope and Max. I feel like the judges are really picking on her and it kind of made Max angry...well, not "kind of" but really made him angry. I think the judges could be a little diplomatic sometimes. I also think they judge Max's and Derek's partners a little harder than the rest. Tomorrow Chaz should exit the ballroom. He just can't possibly compete with the's either him or Nancy Grace, although she did pretty well tonight.

More later...

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Gorgeous Sunday

We had such a beautiful day today! We had the doors and windows wide open on October 23rd - that's unheard of! I think it was 73 or so...and tomorrow is supposed to be beautiful too! We went to church this morning, as usual. Our choir sang a song called Elijah Rock a capella. I thought the alto part was really hard. We hit our notes every time in practice and then when we had to sing it for real, we missed our G! I couldn't believe that we were so far off. The congregation seemed to really like the song, could see it on their faces. David's sermon was about Elijah...he's been doing a series on him for a while. Today's text was from I Kings 20, the last 5-7 verses. Very interesting series!

After lunch, Dave took his nap while I watched the Nascar race. I thought it was a boring race - I am not a fan of restrictor plate races! There was one horrific wreck - I just knew that guy would be hurt, but he wasn't...he walked away! After Dave woke up, he helped me clean up the house and then we went to Carl Willhoit's visitation. Carl fell getting out of the combine (he was 86 I think) and didn't recover from the head trauma. He was such a nice man. We waited in line almost an hour to see the family.

Tomorrow I have a stamp class here at my house at 9:00 AM...what was I thinking??? I am not a morning person, but I'll need to be tomorrow. Then at 2:00 I have an appointment with Dr. Hill about my knee. Then at 5:00 we will go to Loren's visitation. Loren's funeral is Tuesday morning, so we'll be back at Reese's for that. That's another sad one! He was burning off some waterways and was either overcome by smoke or had a heart attack. We heard today that Loren and Carl were in high school together. They'll both be missed!

More later...