Friday, February 22, 2013

More From This Week!

It has been a great week! Those who are retired may not have even realized it but Monday was a holiday for those who attend school and some who work, like Sandee. After my PT on Monday morning, Rich and I met Sandee, the boys, and their friend, Michael, at the Chandler mall for a late lunch. These boys were having a blast shopping, or rather cruising, the mall together.

While we were at the kids' Wednesday afternoon, Shelby asked her mom to get "the bear" out. I had not seen it for many years. 

Here is the sweet story about "the bear": The first time Rich came to our house, when he was working on a project at the Jacksonville plant, he brought Greg a Hot Wheels motorcycle and he brought Sandee this small bear. She took it to her room and returned a short time later with a thank you note she had typed on the toy typewriter she had gotten for Christmas; she was 7 1/2 years old. And yes, Rich still has that note too. Even though Rich and I became great friends after that and married six years later, I contend that those two were connected from the moment they met.

Thursday was packed with excitement and activity. I'll probably share more later about the first event of the morning. After that we drove around and I got more photos of the remaining snow on the Superstitions.

Midday we went to my ten week post-op appointment with the surgeon. He checked out my lack of range of motion and the swelling then read the progress report with measurements of my limitations that the physical therapist had sent him. My progress is extremely slow and my recovery will take a long time...but there is progress! By the time we had a late lunch, did laundry, and picked up some groceries the day was waning....but not over. Bill and Deanne got in and set up here at the KOA in time to come over and visit for a while.

I've spent much of this Friday organizing medical bills and reading while Rich and Bill took their first bike ride together. They covered about ten miles, including much off-road riding. When they got back, they spent a couple of hours sitting outside, drinking beer and shooting the breeze. They have been such great friends for so many years.

Lovin' Life ~~ This Life

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Snow in Apache Junction

What a day of weather. It started raining early this the ungodly hour of 8:30 or something and by 10:00 there were big fat snowflakes amongst the raindrops. The clouds were low and heavy so we couldn't see the mountains. We left about 11:00 to see if any of the roads north of us were flooding and as the clouds lifted above the Superstitions we gasped at the sight of snow all the way to the bottom of the mountains. This shot was taken at a high, clear point at the intersection of Idaho and McKellips roads.

Doesn't this just take your breath away? It surely does mine! My beloved Superstitions completely covered in snow. A friend who has lived in this area for 30 years claims this has never happened in her time here...another gift to us from the gods. The lower slopes from the center and on to the right side of this photo are densely covered with saguaro cacti...I wish we had been able to get closer shots of that but we were running out of time.

Here is another favorite shot from this morning. I love the contrast of the cactus covered desert in front of the snow covered mountains.

I had PT at 2:00 and an appointment for a haircut at 4:00 near the kids' house so we went by there after to hang out and visit with them. We headed home before 7:00 and were shocked again to discover snowy slush on the freeway and a couple of spinouts as we neared Apache Junction. At home we were treated to snow and slush. As I posted on FB, I thought we were

"going where the sun keeps shining
Thru' the pouring rain,
Going where the weather suits my clothes" [name that song]

but this weather certainly doesn't suit my shoes! And I still cannot wear normal shoes on my swollen right foot. Ah yes, when we got home this evening: snow on the table and on Rich's bike; deep slush on our patio mat...just look how deep on Rich's footprints; and snow around the tree behind our motorhome!

With little snow back home this winter, we may have seen more of it here today than if we had stayed in Illinois!

Lovin' Life ~~ And Outrageous Weather

Sunday, February 17, 2013

A Normal Weekend!

After all we have been through this winter, we finally have had a nearly normal weekend! The weather is gorgeous, Rich has recovered from a nasty cold, and my pain is okay. While I was laid up at the kids' house, Rich renewed his interest in bicycling and found that he loves riding off-road on the many desert trails in our area out here. Yesterday was the first time that I got to see him prepare and take off. He has ridden as far as thirty miles in a day but was only gone about half an hour yesterday to get back into it after being sick. Lookin' good, huh?

Shawn and Sandee brought the kids out mid-afternoon. We took a ride, viewing the Superstitions and driving along the kids' favorite roller coaster road as fast as we safely dared. I'll have to try to get photos of some of the steeply wavy roads out here.

Aren't they adorable, all clustered together at the Red Box to check out what movies are available?

While I fixed dinner, they all just hung out playing with the girls or on one of the computers. Then it was time to make up the beds and watch Madagascar 3. The five of us love the Madagascar movies!

We enjoyed a lazy Sunday morning with cinammon rolls and bacon for breakfast (no Kathy, not delicious home made ones like yours, I only wish!). Dylan told us that our friends' daughter was racing today so I called Jen and we made arrangements to go to the Gymkhana where Jordan was competing with her horse, Doc.

They had also brought another horse that is stabled with theirs that their son, Josh, sometimes rides. Somehow, I didn't get any photos of Jen, her husband, Dave, or their other son, Dustin...geesh, what a lame excuse for a photographer. Sandee met us there, the weather was perfect, the events brought back lots of childhood memories of horse shows we attended as a family, and it was great getting to visit with Jen and Dave. The kids all had a blast hanging out around the horses, riding, and playing.

And what kid doesn't love a clubhouse under the bleachers?

This weekend meant so much to me because this is the life we normally live...and getting back to our life is long overdue!

Lovin' Life ~~ And Family, And Friends, And Horses!

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Happy Valentine's Day!

I just love that this, my 700th blog post, coincides with Valentine's Day!

Our theme this year was S'Mores. I got this idea from one of the blogs I follow and the kids liked it too. We assembled them yesterday afternoon for Dylan and Shelby to take to school today.

We gathered all the ingredients: graham crackers, Hershey bars, and heart-shaped marshmallows. Shelby used all pink marshmallows in hers because Dylan only wanted white ones for his. Sandee had made the cards and printed them a couple of weeks ago when we started planning this.

Here are the kids with their finished S'More goodies bags.

They don't really celebrate Valentine's Day in Junior High but I want to share this great photo of Jackson with Dexter on this day of love too!

Happy Valentine's Day to Each & Every One of You!

Lovin' Life ~~ Lovin' Love!

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Transitioning Home

There have been some major changes. For example, I had the rental company pick up the wheelchair as soon as I felt comfortable walking with just the walker.

Saturday, February 2, 2013

As you see in the second photo, I was able to walk to the football field with just the walker. In the first photo, Dylan had just snapped the football and you see Jackson, in the black sport glasses, running.

Shelby had gone to a birthday party where her folks picked her up on the way to our meeting with another family for lunch at a nearby restaurant.

Another victory for the Saints...they remain undeated!

Sunday, February 3, 2013

We went to Sandee's and Shawn's friends' home for a Super Bowl Party. The food and the company couldn't be beat! We're so fortunate to be welcomed by all their friends.

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Shelby was feeling sick on Monday afternoon so came home early and then stayed home sick on Tuesday. Can you tell that by that afternoon she had perked up quite a bit? We were just hanging out, making the head and the foot of the hospital bed go up and down and singing silly songs like I'm a Little Teapot then finding the songs on the internet with our smart phones.

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

We never did make it here to eat all last winter but I have had carryout sandwiches from there twice while laid up at Sandee's. Before going to my physical therapy on Wednesday, we finally had breakfast there. The food was great and the grounds are lovely. Just look at that huge Tamarisk tree Rich is standing by in the outdoor dining area.

Thursday, February 7, 2013

The Running Club at the kids' elementary school participated in a meet with other district schools so Shelby's Cheer group was there guessed it...cheer them on! Dylan came along just for the fun of it.

In both photos below, Shelby is in the front row, third from the right.

While we were at the park, Shawn called to say that he had two tickets to that night's hockey game and asked if Rich wanted to take Dylan. He didn't have to ask twice! He brought the tickets to the park then had to drive back up to Phoenix or Scottsdale to a late meeting. After taking Shelby and me home, Rich and Dylan were thrilled to go watch the Phoenix Coyotes host the Chicago Blackhawks!

Saturday, February 9, 2013

Any morning is better when it starts with fresh-baked muffins by Shelby, our sweet baker! There were both chocolate chip and berry muffins.

The conditions were tough for watching the game on this day. It was very cold and very windy...we were all miserable. This was Sandee's first Saturday to work since starting at the library and even though I know she hated missing their game, I think she got the best deal that day! We froze sitting out there. I seem to catch this shot most often...again Dylan had just snapped the ball to Michael; Jackson and TJ are in motion.

Here is a shot of Jackson just one second before he crossed the goal line for a touchdown...finally, I caught a shot of a touchdown!

Shelby, Rich, and I went to WalMart then picked up lunch to take home for everybody. After we ate, I finished packing and Rich loaded the car. I said my goodbyes and WE went home. I have to be very careful getting into and out of the motorhome but I can manage. This was the first time I had been inside our little home since the morning of December 12th...oh my.

After unpacking and getting settled and spending time with our oh-so-excited girls we took a ride. The sunsets out here are phenomenal; just look at the fiery red glow on my beloved Superstition Mountains.

Driving a little longer, the sun had dropped to this. That is rain we were seeing in the distance.

Sunday, February 10, 2013

As soon as it warmed up a bit outside on this beautiful morning, we joined our neighbors gathered at Pam and Donnie's. It is so good to be home!

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

As we headed out mid-morning to run some errands and have lunch, we saw this and drove to a great vantage point for photos. I don't always remember to share photos of the many other mountains that we also enjoy viewing since I am always raving about my beloved Superstition Mountains. The mountains in the background of this photo which are dusted with snow are the Mazatzal Mountains which include those known as Four Peaks which are at the top right side of the photo. The snow clearly illustrated the layers of mountains in this area which is just north of us.

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Rich has been sick for a couple of days with yesterday being the worst. Dylan and Shelby got out of school at 11:30 so we went over there to spend the afternoon with them and do a couple loads of laundry.

They were greeted by The Girls and Dexter when they got home. Shelby had already made it past the dogs before I got to the door with the camera.

Rich had arranged for the hospital bed to be picked up this afternoon since I am managing so well at the motorhome. He had never tried out the bed so he took it for a spin before they came to get it. Bella joined him, which gave her a safe place to view Dexter and Dora going at each other...those two are like oil and water.

After the bed was gone, Shelby pulled out the big dog that my cousin, Kathy, made for the boys. Yes, that would be Kathy the Baker, there is no end to that girl's talents. She made two of these when they were very little but only one made the move to Arizona nearly nine years ago. Shelby didn't even know until today that Kathy made it and she is now even more in awe of her first cousin twice removed.(I think I have that right this time!).

We stayed to visit with Jackson a bit after he got home from school but had to leave before Sandee was off work because Rich was really tiring by then.

Lovin' Life ~~ Happy to Be Progressing!