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December 2009

Thursday, December 31st. We had two visits with Shirl's cousin Duane this week. On Tuesday we got together at Coco's in Mesa for lunch and on Thursday Duane, Marvin, Linda and their two children came over to visit with Wilbur, Barb, Myron, Rick, Norene and little Gracie.


Friday, December 25th. Wonderful day today. The Lord's birthday. Breakfast at home with Shirl and Kerri, then over to Mari and Terry's to install their router and broadband adapter, and then to Mike and Bob's for Christmas dinner, which was wonderful - prime rib, baked potato, yams, mixed veggies and pumpkin pie or apple pie for dessert. We are back home now fully stuffed.


Wednesday, December 23rd. Yesterday was the second anniversary of Bunnie's passing. A sad day for the family. We kept busy packing and delivering Christmas food boxes to 79 families. Today we distributed a few more.


Monday, December 21st. We received a beautiful Christmas letter and CD from Mari today. She had written about her feelings for the family at Christmas and picked out a special song for each of us to put on the CD- beautiful! We are prepping for the big Christmas food box distribution tomorrow. We have over 70 requests plus we have found 32 sponsors for Adopt-a-Family this year who will be bringing Christmas cheer to those families. Shirl, Arlene, Marlin, and I will be delivering gifts and dinner tonight to the two families that were adopted by Desert Shadows Church. We stopped by Lori's yesterday for pierogis and a drink and brought Jaidyn an early Christmas gift - a stuffed animal tiger that mews and has a bottle. She liked it but preferred to play in the bowl of water that was provided for the dog - Gracie.


Saturday, December 19th. We had a great visit with the family last night over at Chip and Diane's. Pizza was great and we had some awesome dessert snacks. Mari and Shirl both took copies of the recipe for Chocolate covered saltines that taste like Heath bars. Unfortunately, neither Bob and Mike nor Lori was able to come. Mike was busy getting ready for a Christmas party for his employees. Not sure what happened to Lori but we will be seeing her tomorrow for Pierogis and Spirits. I lost my Bocce ball game yesterday so I have been eliminated from the tournament. We only have four weeks to get ready for the Desert Shadows theater group play and we are not having another practice until January 7th. Hopefully, it will all come together at the last minute. If we can pull it off, it should be very funny.


Thursday, December 17th. We went to see The Blind Side this morning. It's quite a good movie. I forgot that I was supposed to be at play practice at 1:00PM but I had already bought the tickets. After the show we stopped by Radio Shack, Office Max and Michael's Craft stores to buy some material for the church.


Wednesday, December 16th. We are going to have a Holiday get together with Lori, Craig and the rest of the family this Sunday with Pierogis and Drinks. Today was very busy at SVdP, with over 22 boxes being delivered. Bible study today was good. The new sound system worked well.


Tuesday, December 15th. Follow-up Doctor appointment for Shirl went well this morning. Church meeting at 2:00 and then off in a bus to have dinner and see the Barleen Family Opera this evening. Chip and Diane are hosting a pizza party on Friday which we are looking forward to. The gingerbread house activity fell through this year.


Saturday, December 12th. I helped Len Roose set up a microphone and amplifier system in the back auditorium this morning for use at the Bible study next week. It will make it much easier for several people to hear the Reverend better. Shirl will be saying the closing prayer at Bill Kelly's Memorial service this afternoon at the clubhouse and I will be the first lector at mass this evening. We are hosting the dance this evening at the clubhouse as well. Kind of a busy day.


Friday, December 11th. Shirl is totally back on her feet and feeling much better. We went to Cracker Barrel tonight with Myron, Barb, Arlene and Marlin for the fish fry. It seemed as though half the park was there. It was a pleasant surprise to see Wilbur there. He has recovered about 90% from his stroke and is doing very well. Afterwards, we came home and played Pinochle with Arlene and Marlin. The ladies won tonight. Yesterday, we went to Prescott for a going away party for my Forest Supervisor, Elroy. There was a good turnout and it was great to see some of my old forest service friends.


Tuesday, December 8th. Shirl got a clean bill of health today after her procedure. It was touch and go last night as to whether she would have it today. She became very dehydrated prepping for it and we had to take her to Emergency to get her stabilized. All is well now and she is resting today.


Wednesday, December 2nd. We are still out of commission with our colds. Bible study started today and the Desert Shadows players are getting ready to do another play in January.


Sunday, November 29th. Shirl and I are both down with colds for the past few days. We had two Thanksgiving dinners this week - one on Sunday with Mari, Terry and family and another on Thanksgiving day at Norene and Rick's. Wilbur had his 90th birthday on Friday and we missed the party because we were sick. Earlier in the week we delivered over 100 food boxes for Thanksgiving. We are just taking it easy today.


November 2009

Friday, November 20th. Things have become very busy around the park. Most of the snowbirds are back and there are many activities underway. I've had a good week in shuffleboard and Bocce ball. I enjoyed being Lay Leader at the church service last Sunday and we had an eventful journey with the "Red Hats" on the Phoenix light rail after service. We took the rail all the way from the Phoenix end to the end of the line in Mesa and back, stopping at George and Dragon for lunch. Very interesting ... Tonight we went to the with friends from the park.


Saturday, November 14th. One of the many things that Shirl and I have in common is our dislike for bananas. It seems that we have discovered a new one - neither of us has a green thumb. Last year we bought a poinsettia which we managed to kill before the Christmas season was over and this year we bought a pot of geraniums which had extremely nice flowers and within just a few days, all of the flowers were gone and in spite of putting Miracle Grow on the plant, we have no flowers or buds. Every other pot of geraniums in the park looks wonderful. We went to see Wilbur yesterday afternoon and he seems to be making very good progress in his recovery. This morning, we went to see the Horizon High School band participate in the state marching band finals. They did an awesome job.


Wednesday, November 11th. Veterans Day. There was a Welcome Home dinner at the clubhouse tonight. Most people are back in the park by now. We heard that Wilbur is moving to the rehab center today.


Sunday, November 8th. We got a report from Wilbur's son Denny that Wilbur is doing a little better today. He is able to raise his right arm and is in good spirits. Shirl and I went to brunch at the Black Bear this morning with Arlene and Marlin, who just returned to the park yesterday for the season. Marlin and I each had a Corona with brunch.


Saturday, November 7th. We got a call from the park office yesterday, when we got home from doing some errands, that Wilbur had taken a fall at the clubhouse and was asking for us. It turns out that he had a mild stroke that has affected the right side of his body. The medics transported him to the hospital where he is now in stable condition. We will go see him this morning at the Good Samaritan Hospital. Last night we took granddaughter Emi to see Phantom of the Opera at the Gammage Theater in Tempe. She was really surprised and enjoyed the show. This afternoon there is a memorial service for Edie at the clubhouse that we will be attending. Shirley is doing better each day although she has some bruising on her jaw line.


Thursday, November 5th. Shirley's surgery went extremely well yesterday. The tooth was extracted without damage to the jaw and she is recovering with only moderate pain.


Tuesday, November 3rd. The party on Saturday was fun. Last night Shirley and I stapled bags to get ready for the SVdP food drive later this month. Played cribbage this morning and shuffleboard this afternoon.


October 2009

Saturday, October 31st. Halloween party is tonight. Shirley's costume really looks nice and I have found a gun for my gangster outfit that won't cause heart attacks among the residents. Next week is loaded with activities - Church tomorrow morning; the usual SVdP work on Monday; Cribbage and Shuffleboard on Tuesday; Hospital on Wednesday for a recertification and Thursday for communion; and Bridge on Friday. We are not looking forward to Wednesday morning because Shirl is having a molar extraction which will likely cause her to be in pain for a few days.


Wednesday, October 28th. Where has the week gone? Friends Ray, Lois, Jody and Rod dropped by yesterday and we had a really nice visit. Kerri hosted a lunch at her place for everyone. Monday and Today were both very busy at the SVdP Pantry and we are almost out of food. Shirl helped me deliver 9 food boxes today. We passed out 18 boxes in all today. We are having a Halloween Party this Saturday at the clubhouse. Shirl will be going as a dance hall girl and I will be going as a Gangster.


Thursday, October 22nd. There was a memorial service at the park yesterday for Carol Shinn, who passed away last weekend. We have lost more park people this year than ever before. Shirley helped with the hospitality activity. Last night Norene, Rick, Wilbur, Shirley and I went to dinner at the Abacus for Chinese food. It was very good with lots of leftovers to take home. Wilbur insisted on picking up the tab. He is a very generous and giving person. We came back to the house, watched a bit of the ball game and looked at all of the pictures from our trip back East.


Tuesday, October 20th. It is so sad to see the increase in the need for food boxes for the poor in this area. We have delivered almost 400 boxes in the last two months and it seems to be getting worse. This compares to a little under 300 for the same period last year. Our SVdP pantry is very low on food and we won't get another allotment until next month. Financial assistance requests are also way up and we are only able to help a few each month. On a lighter note, things are picking up here in the park. Many people have returned for the winter season and we've noticed that our days are getting fuller. We are playing bridge this morning. The park church starts this Sunday and Shirl will be the Lay Leader for the service. We are also trying to come up with our costumes for the Halloween party later this month.


Sunday, October 18th. After church last night we went to the Times Square restaurant for a very nice dinner and then on over to the band competition at North Canyon High. Austin was playing in the Horizon High band and both of Di's parents were there as well. The band looked great and won the competition in several categories.


Friday, October 16th. Yesterday we washed all of the screens, windows and the outside of our home. We were so tired from that we didn't feel like updating the web page yesterday. But today, we played bridge this morning, went to Cracker Barrel for the fish fry and then over to Chip and Di's for a game of Phase 10. Lots of fun and laughs. Di's Mom is here from Illinois.


Wednesday, October 14th. Mari and Terry had us over for Spaghetti dinner on Monday evening and we played a game of Skip-Bo. We had quite an active morning yesterday... washed screens and windows and wiped down the side of the porch, bought and installed a new shade for the east side of the porch, and had lunch at the Olive Garden.


Saturday, October 10th. Jaidyn's First Birthday! Shirl and I are going shopping this morning to buy a horse for Jaidyn (Fisher-Price one on wheels). Here's a rundown of our wonderful trip back east last week. We flew to NYC and we spent two wonderful nights and one day in the city. Highlights : Breakfast at Cluny's, Harbor Cruise, Dinner at Nick and Toni's (I must have offended the chef by asking for salt and pepper so they were brought to me loose on a plate with a sprig of rosemary in between the salt and pepper. I had to use my fingers to put it on my dinner), and South Pacific on Broadway. On Thursday, we headed for Rhode Island in Ricks EOS. Showed Shirl around my boyhood hometown and visited with Cousin Dave and Alice and Aunt Doris. On Friday, after breakfast with the folks, we headed for our friends Joe and Carol in Massachusetts via Mount Hope Bridge and Newport's Ocean drive with the unbelievable mansions. On Saturday, it was raining but we headed off for Boston with four umbrellas. We stopped on the way at Concord's and Lexington's Historical sites and then on into Boston for a wonderful wet day on the Freedom Trail. Back to Joe and Carol's for a Maine Lobster dinner - superb. On Sunday we headed for New Hampshire to see son Bill and family. Beautiful colors along the way as the foliage had peaked in upper NH. It was Ginny's birthday and there was a barbecue and cake at her place with all of the family - Bill, Sarah, Elaina, and the great grandchildren - Lexi, Ali and Evan. On Monday we went over to the Maine coast - beautiful. Returned to Joe and Carol's for two games of Hand and Foot before heading back to NYC. Rick took us to a Mexican restaurant for quesadillas and then back to hotel at the airport. Flew home on Wednesday and here we are!


Wednesday, October 7th. Just got home today from a wonderful trip back east. Details to follow.


September 2009

Monday, September 28th. We found a platform rocker out in front of a neighbor's home with a Free sign on it which we thought would be nice for the trailer. After mass yesterday we took it up to the trailer and also brought back some household items that we needed. The chair needs a bit of cleanup but looks OK. When we got back Shirl made a Peach pie. Don and Verna came over for a visit and we shared the pie. My mother would have been 99 today.


Saturday, September 26th. We took Wilbur and Tom to Cracker Barrel last night for the fish fry and all of us enjoyed it as usual. This morning, on our bike ride, we saw another coyote running through the park. They are really getting desperate for food. Don and I bartered services - he fixed the water heater and I helped get his computer connected to the internet through high speed wireless. The problem with the water heater turned out to be the heating element but we also replaced the thermostat. In the process of changing the heating element we forgot to turn off the water to the house and, wouldn't you have guessed, the water sprayed straight out and all over when the element was removed. Don got soaked. It missed me and Shirl.


Thursday, September 24th. Mari had a birthday party for Terry this evening. Instead of birthday cake, she bought three different types of pie - French Silk, Key Lime, and Apple. Nice idea. We had a few laughs while we played Taboo. Our hot water heater is malfunctioning. We're not sure why and will have someone check it out in the morning. This means cold showers to start the day!


Tuesday, September 22nd. Went to the Hand Surgeon yesterday and got a cortisone shot for my "trigger thumb". It feels a lot better today but the surgeon said that it could take 10 days before it was back to normal. Shirl and I went to see The Informant! today. Not a bad movie with some interesting twists and based on a true story. The new social activity directors for the park have arrived - Shirley and Larry are from Oregon.


Sunday, September 20th. After we went to church last night we went for dinner at Applebees and, continuing their tradition of messing up our order, they brought Shirl Fries and Crispy Chicken instead of Orange Crispy Chicken and Rice. This morning we did a little grocery shopping at Walmart. We are expecting Paul and Louise to come by to pick up their mail. The Cardinals played Jacksonville today and finally won a game.


Saturday, September 19th. We went to see the Diamondbacks play the Rockies last night. The Calvary Church choir did a fantastic job singing the Star Spangled Banner to open the festivities. We were initially sitting with the group from Calvary but unfortunately the "social activity" aisle was between us and home plate and we couldn't watch the game. After a bit we moved to the other side of the aisle and were sitting amongst a group of younger people that obviously didn't come in on the Assembly of God bus that we saw in the parking area. Everyone of them seemed to have a camera and were taking pictures of themselves and their friends and drinking a little beer. They were not rowdy but they sure were restless. The girls were falling out of their blouses. No wonder the crowd was restless. All in all it was a really good game with the DBacks winning 7-5 with home runs by Ryan Roberts and Brandon Allen with a great sliding catch by Gerrardo Parra.


Wednesday, September 16th. Norene stopped by for a nice visit with Shirl on Monday. Diane hosted a great birthday party for Chip that night. Diane's Cody made the birthday cake which was excellent. Ten of us played Phase 10 until past our bedtime. Yesterday, we cleaned out the shed which took much of the morning but now we know where everything is until we forget where we put it. We counted the rabbits this morning on our ride (Senior entertainment). There were four less than the last time which means either that they were sleeping in or the coyotes got them. Lots of bicycle traffic in the park this morning. Shirl and I went over to Lori's last night to help Brody with his math homework. He seems to be getting it OK. He had some problems with math last school year.


Sunday, September 13th. We had a nice time at the dance last night. Mac put together a very nice set of dance tunes with a mix of country and pop. Kerri came over for lunch today. Shirl made a pizza casserole and strawberry shortcake, both of which were excellent. They are off on a shopping trip this afternoon while I'm starting another painting.


Saturday, September 12th. Shirl and I had breakfast with Chip this morning at Mimi's Cafe at Desert Ridge. They have a fantastic stuffed French Toast with blueberries and strawberries. This evening after mass we had Mostaccioli Siciliano and a Margarita over at the Times Square Pizzeria on Deer Valley Rd. It's the first time that we have tried that place. It was good and reasonably priced. Mac is putting on a dance at the clubhouse this evening and we will dust off our dancing shoes and give it a whirl (it may also help digest the pasta).


Friday, September 11th. How can we ever forget 8 years ago today? Sad and emotional to remember. Shirl and I played bridge this morning and she won. After, we went by Calvary to pick up our tickets for the DBacks game with the Rockies next Friday. The seats are on the lower level on the first base side.


Wednesday, September 9th (09/09/09). The potluck on Monday had more than 70 people show up and there was plenty of good food which everyone enjoyed. Yesterday, Shirl went to the hairdresser and looks even more marvelous than before if that's possible. Today Shirl came with me to the SVdP pantry for distribution of food boxes. Afterwards we went to Chick-fil-a for chicken sandwiches and an awesome strawberry milk shake. Tonight we watched the President's speech on Health Care reform. He is an articulate speaker but I have doubts about his ability to pay for much of this plan with elimination of waste in Medicare. If there's that much waste, why not clamp down on that today?


Monday, September 7th. Shirl and I went to see All About Steve after church service yesterday. It's a cute movie. There's a potluck lunch at the clubhouse at noon today. I made macaroni salad and Shirl is making dessert bars.


Sunday, September 6th. This morning Shirl and I went to the Orangewood church for their service. I was honored to sing How Great Thou Art in praise of God.


Saturday, September 5th. While we were running our errands yesterday morning we stopped at Lamar's to have an old fashioned iced cake donut and, oh no, they didn't have any. So we came home and Shirl and I had some strawberry shortcake. We got a note from Bobbie yesterday with a picture of a ring bear. The bear reminded Bobbi of Marianne's Brian who was the ring bearer at Dave and Vanna's wedding. He was very disappointed when he found out that he wasn't going to wear a bear suit at the wedding. Now Brian is all grown up and is having a wedding of his own. Kerri came with us to Cracker Barrel last night for our standing date with Tom and Wilbur. We are finally getting some very good rain. It started this morning at around 9 AM.


Friday, September 4th. Last night, for the first time in her life, Shirl had clams in her kitchen while I prepared some Clam Casinos. We took them over to Mari and Terry's and Shirl actually tried two of them. Although she wasn't going to taste them, she did and thought that they were pretty good. We may make a New Englander out of her yet. This morning while we were out for our walk, we saw a park model with water running out into the street. Since no one was around, I walked over to see that the outside faucet was spewing water out at a great rate. What seems to have happened is that during the night the wind had knocked over a broom that hit the faucet handle with enough force to turn it on. It must have been on all night because the wind died down at around 10 last night. We left the tenant a note explaining what happened so she won't think that the flood around her house was caused by a burst pipe.


Wednesday, September 2nd. The physical went well and I continue to be alive. On Tuesday night, Shirl told me that she couldn't find the Qwest phone bill which she always keeps by the calendar. We looked high and low around the house but there was no sign of it anywhere. She even went out back to check the trash and found the envelope that it came in. This morning, while I'm over at the church working, she calls me just laughing out loud because she went in to the freezer to get an oatmeal cookie and found the bill stuck to the bottom of the cookie pan.


Tuesday, September 1st. On Sunday evening we were invited to Mari's and Terry's for a Chili dinner with Strawberry Shortcake afterwards. Mari used her Grandmother Jordan's recipe and it turned out to be perfect. After dinner we watched Fred Claus. Mari's starting to get ready for Christmas. Today I have my annual physical.


August 2009

Sunday, August 30th. We had a wonderful day yesterday. We went to the Diamondbacks game early so that we could be sure to get a Louis Gonzalez (Gonzo) T-shirt, which we both got. Gonzo returned to the D-Backs in a management position in the front office. The D-Backs beat the Houston Astros 9-0, which was great. After the game Montgomery Gentry gave a one hour free concert which was thoroughly enjoyed by all. Good old redneck boys!!


Friday, August 28th. While we were out and about yesterday, we stopped at Calvary to take Mari to lunch at the Greek Pita restaurant. Very good food. This morning, Shirley and I played Bridge and both of us did very well. In the evening, we took Wilbur and Tom to the Cracker Barrel for the fish fry. We hadn't been for quite a while and the fish is as good as ever. The folks at the clubhouse were teasing me last Saturday about the fact that whenever I explain where someplace is, I refer to it in relation to a nearby restaurant. Over the years, I've eaten in most of them.


Tuesday, August 25th. Shirley and I drove over to Cotton Lane Resort this morning to do some training for the office folks. We didn't realize until we got there that Cotton Lane had doublewides as well as park models and RVs. It's a very nice park. We had lunch with Chip at the Black Bear just off of I-10 at Dysart Rd.


Sunday, August 23rd. During our "Senior Biathalon" this morning we spotted a coyote trying to run down a rabbit. We've heard of them being here in the park before but this is the first one we have actually seen. We are spending a quiet day at home today and enjoyed a steak dinner followed by some peaches and ice cream.


Saturday, August 22nd. Yesterday was Jim's birthday and I spoke with him and Karen on the phone. They were on their way or were already at Coco Beach. It's always nice hearing from them. We started out yesterday with a ride up to Prescott by the back way through Wickenburg, Yarnell, and Wilhoit. It was a "real treat" for Shirl, who doesn't particularly like curvy mountain grade roads without guard rails but she survived it just fine. On the trip up we saw several ranches with horses and some with Texas Longhorn cattle. When we got to Prescott, we stopped at Wendy's and picked up some lunch to bring over to Lynx Lake. On our arrival at the lake we were spotted by two white geese and one gray one who decided that they should waddle over to our table and share our lunch. There they were with their beaks open and their heads in the air looking for a handout. We tried to ignore them and turned away from them but one persistent goose took a few pokes at Shirl's backside. She has now been goosed by a goose - twice. Shirl finally gave them a few pieces of bread and I shepherded them back towards the lake. After lunch we went over to visit with Ken and Susy who have moved their 5th wheel back to the Lynx North Shore site, where they are hosts. We had a nice visit with them. Susy always wants us to eat something, so she provided each of us with an ice cream cone. Later we drove over to Dewey and had a great visit with Paul and Louise and had a wonderful Fish and Chips dinner at Leff-T's steak house, courtesy of Paul and Louise. On the way out of restaurant, the wind had picked up and was blowing dust and the rain started just as we were heading back home. The temperature dropped from the mid-90s to 63 with heavy rain between Dewey and I-17. As we came down into Black Canyon City, the temperature went back up to 102. All in all, a great day and we got home safely.



Wednesday, August 19th. We did our usual Senior Ironman Biathalon this morning - a one mile walk and a two and a half mile bike ride. This is our usual morning exercise. We finally managed to get a frame that fits my latest painting effort. It only took four trips to Michaels Craft store to get it right. I've also had a frustrating few days trying to sort out an American Express issue with four customer reps - Gauma Gupta, Vandan Nemma, Simple Guliani, and Sakshi Datta. I'm worn out... Wilbur gave us a watermelon this morning. When he goes to CostCo he has to buy two, so when he does that he usually gives us one. He is very generous. During my SVdP deliveries this morning, I noticed that the battery wasn't charging so I dropped the van off at Carmen's repair shop. I feared that it was the alternator. I was right. The van is back home now with a brand new one.


Saturday, August 15th. Just finishing up the Lake Pleasant Cactus painting and trying to find a frame for it has been an adventure. First of all we picked out a frame at Michaels and got it home and found it to be too small. We went back over to Michael's and found one that was too big. So we gave up for the day. Shirl had her eyes checked yesterday and her previous prescription is still good. We had the neighbors over for fried apples and ice cream last evening. We had a nice visit.


Thursday, August 13th. On Tuesday we decided to check the distances for our exercise in the morning and found them to be 1 mile for the walk and 2.5 miles for the bike ride. While we were driving around the park, we saw our friend Chris who went home and told his wife Connie that he saw us doing our exercises the easy way. We had been doing well exercising early in the week but on Wednesday after our walk, we discovered that the front tire on my bike had gone flat. We dropped the bike off for repair but didn't get it back until this afternoon. We had some fairly heavy rain this morning, so we were not able to do our normal walk either. After the hospital visits this morning we dropped by to see Edie over at the group home. Later, we went to the Newman Eye Center for a YAG Laser treatment on my left eye. The procedure went well and I can see a whole lot better now. Pretty much the same in each eye.


Sunday, August 9th. Julie and Julia is a great laugh out loud movie. We recommend it... After the movie, we had lunch with Rick and Peter at the Claim Jumper which is always a treat. Later, we convened at Chip and Diane's for a barbecue. Unfortunately, Lori was not able to make it because Brody was really sick. Diane made some tasty side dishes and a Gooey Butter cake which is very rich and tastes great. Shirl and I attended mass at St. James this morning and then went over to the Christian service at Orangewood to hear Wilbur sing a solo. If we hadn't stayed for a visit afterwards, we could have made it over to the 10:30 service at the Lutheran church to round out a hat trick. Rick and Peter are leaving today for California. We are so glad that they were able to come to Phoenix and see all of us.


Friday, August 7th. This morning we played Bridge at the clubhouse and Shirl took first place. She's becoming quite an accomplished player. Rick arrived in town this afternoon with his friend Peter and we had a small get together at Terry and Mari's this evening. It was a wonderful time and good to see Rick and meet Peter. He seems like a very nice person. Rick and Peter are touring the west for the next week or so. We are going to see Julie and Julia in the morning.


Wednesday, August 5th. We went to CostCo yesterday to make an eye appointment for Shirl and ended up buying over $100 worth of stuff. Last evening, we went to the Abacus Inn with Rick and Norene for Chinese food. My first time there and the food is very good. We had a nice time. Today I went to see an opthamologist and will have a procedure called a posterior capsulotimy to clear up a secondary cataract condition in my left eye next Thursday. Judy's funeral was today.


Sunday, August 2nd. After church last night we went to the Macaroni Grill and split their pork chop dinner, which is one their best menu items. Then we went to see Mari and Terry for a short visit to see how Mari had rearranged her home. It really looks great. This afternoon we received some very tragic news from Iowa. Shirl's cousin Duane was in an accident and his wife Judy was killed. We just had dinner with them in Pisgah when we were there in June. She was such a nice lady.


July 2009

Friday, July 31st. We spent the day relaxing at home. This afternoon I decided to try and fix the laptop one more time. After two broken bulbs and with the help of the Good Lord, the bulb is replaced and the laptop is functional again. This evening we will go to Cracker Barrel for the fish fry.


Thursday, July 30th. The Saltimbanco show was great. We both really enjoyed it. Shirl had never seen anything like it before. Terry, Mari, and the kids came over for pizza this evening. We had a nice visit. I notice that the "cash for clunkers" program is going to be suspended tomorrow because they have run out of funds after only six days. Just another example of how when the government sticks their nose into "helping" us, they mess it up. The program was supposed to last until November. Washington is applauding the CARS’ program and Senator Debbie Stabenow, Democrat of Michigan, said it was an enormous success. Our lawmakers (who seem to have a frail grasp on reality) allotted only one billion dollars for the program. This is compared to the 36 billion dollars in bonuses paid to executives of nine banks, including Bank of America and Citibank, who received a good chunk of bailout money after messing up the economy. I can hardly wait until they stick their nose into our health care.


Wednesday, July 29th. We delivered 20 food boxes today which is very likely the most that we've ever done in a single day. Some people think that the economy is getting better but it doesn't seem so around here. Tonight, Shirl and I are going to see a performance of Saltimbanco, which is the oldest of the Cirque de Soleil shows.


Monday, July 27th. We got an early call from Marge to go pick up chickens from Frys for the SVdP pantry. We picked up 15 for 88 cents a pound. Good deal! In the evening, we attended a SVdP dinner meeting at Hometown Buffet. When we came home, the air conditioner was squawking, so we went out to check. We decided to give it some WD40, which worked but I managed to fall over in the dark and ruin a pair of jeans, wrench my left shoulder and skin my knee.


Sunday, July 26th. Yesterday morning we went to the clubhouse to have some of Wilbur's donuts. There were very few people there. After evening mass, we went to Lori's for a joint birthday gathering for Cody and Brody. This morning we went to the 5 and Diner for breakfast and then I worked on replacing the ccfl bulb in my laptop. After working on it for most of the afternoon and breaking two bulbs in the process, I gave up for the evening and ordered two more bulbs. If I can't fix it this next time, I give up. Shirl and I watched The Shooter which we had both seen before but enjoyed again. Kerri had loaned it and two other DvDs to us so we have plenty of movies to watch. Later we went over to our neighbors' for some cake and ice cream. I woke up at 12:30 AM and wondered if I had ordered the right bulbs, so I sent a note to the vendor asking them to check whether I need a WXGA bulb.

Friday, July 24th. We went to mass this morning and later went to Costco for an eye exam. I should have my new glasses in about a week to 10 days. I may have to have a quick laser surgery on the left eye to remove some cloudiness. The Cactus Wren painting is frustrating me but I'm still working on it.


Wednesday, July 22nd. We worked at the SVdP pantry today. We had a total of 15 food boxes deliveries or pickups. Shirl and I delivered 7. She is becoming quite the trooper. I worked a bit more on the Cactus Wren painting. It's starting to take shape.


Tuesday, July 21st. We had some early morning rain which was really a welcome event. Elaine won the bridge money this morning with over 5000 points. Chick got the pennies as loser. We had a really nice lunch at the Red Lobster... Went to the movies in the evening to see Transformers... we left after about 20 minutes and went to watch Ice Age instead. Ice Age was better... all in all a wasted evening but overall a nice day.


Monday, July 20th. Happy Birthday Michael! We had a light food box delivery day at SVdP but it sure is hot out there. I started a painting of a desert scene with a cactus wren this afternoon. We'll likely put it up with the chickadees and the cardinal. We are finally getting some rain this evening. Not a lot so far, but enough to wet the street out front.


Sunday, July 19th. Check out the funny beer commercial below. Shirl made a batch of oatmeal raisin cookies this morning - my favorite. She sent four of them over to our neighbors who are just back from a road trip. I told her that if they don't like oatmeal raisin cookies to bring them back.


Saturday, July 18th. We went shopping at 6:00 this morning at the Walmart Neighborhood store and got back in time to have coffee and donuts at the clubhouse. Kerri came over later and hung the new vertical blinds in the dining room. We had a nice lunch of chicken and wild rice, with Shirl's homemade peach pie and ice cream afterwards. Just before we left for church, Shirl went to close the new blinds and eleven slats peeled off and hit the floor. It was like watching dominoes go down - an unbelievable sight. We laughed... After church we went to Chili's for a Margarita and some Queso dip and came home and reinserted the slats for the blinds. So far, so good... The outside air temperature on the way home was 119 degrees.


Friday, July 17th. If you click on the Happier Times link below, you may notice that we've added a few items - My Beautiful America and a US Air Force link. I like to go to this page often and enjoy the stuff there. Shirl and I went to Wendy's this morning to get a free bacon and egg sandwich. Delicious... We also had a cinnamon bun. Another neat thing - for telling Wendy's how much we enjoyed the sandwich, we get a free coupon for a hamburger. Wow! We tried to repair our wobbly dining table by turning it upside down and adding more shims. It has got to be the most shimmed table in the universe. We also added red duct tape to hold the shims in place. It still wobbles but not as bad. I went to a Hershey site to get a free coupon for chocolate candy. According to the site my coupon will arrive by email in about six weeks. My goodness, that's almost as good as the $15 Target coupon that was supposed to come with the Arizona Republic subscription. I may have mentioned that we have called three times about this over the last twelve weeks and it still has not arrived. We did however get a bill to extend the subscription. I believe that we shall mention the sunless place where they can stick the next subscription bill. They should learn not to mess with senior citizens. Rick sent me three shirts for my birthday and they arrived in the mail this morning. They are all blue, nice, and very interesting, especially the paisley-like one. Rick called and we spoke about them for a few minutes. Thanks Rick! We are looking forward to seeing you next month.


Thursday, July 16th. Not very many people to visit at the hospital this morning. Later, Shirl and I went over to see Edie at the care home. She seemed pleased to see us and we had a nice visit. Barb, Shirl, Norene and Linda all went off to lunch and left me to fend for myself. Not a problem - the hot dog and potato salad were delicious. Barb is headed back to Iowa tomorrow.


Wednesday, July 15th. Shirl and I did two sessions of SVdP volunteer work this week. We delivered 4 food boxes each on Monday and today. On Monday, there were three women waiting for us at the church when we returned from our deliveries. Unfortunately, none of them spoke English. We were able to figure out that they needed a total of four food boxes, one for a family of 5 that wasn't with them. It's so sad to see the problems that people are having these days. After our session this morning, we went to Home Depot to buy some new blinds for the dining room. We had to avoid a runaway shopping cart on the way out of the parking lot. We then went out to lunch with Mari over at Anzios, which is a nice Italian restaurant that I used to frequent when I worked at Bull.


Sunday, July 12th. We had a very pleasant day yesterday. Barb, Shirl and I went to see The Proposal. It is a very funny romantic comedy and we all enjoyed it. Mari and Terry had a bad experience with their rental car yesterday and were stuck out in Surprise so I took Emi over to the Peoria Sports Complex for a Calvary Junior High event. Barb and Kerri came over for dinner and we played some cards. Very fun day... Most of the kids called to wish me a happy birthday and Paul and Louise called from Dewey to sing Happy Birthday to me.


Friday, July 10th. We took the big van up to Lynx Lake for the night last night - Shirl's first "Van Campout". We visited with Ken and Susy at the campground and played two rubbers of three handed Bridge - Shirl won. The bed was comfortable but she had a really bad night with her eye. We sat by the lake in the morning just after daybreak and because the stone benches were so cold, we decided to sit on a one piece wooden bench. When we sat down, our combined weight (mostly mine) caused the bench to tip over and deposit us on the ground. We laughed and fortunately neither of us was hurt. What with her eye and the bench mishap, we decided we would be safer in Phoenix, so we came home early.


Thursday, July 9th. Yesterday was another SVdP day and this morning was hospital visit day. I stopped by to see Edie who has been very ill. She had been over to a care home but got an infection and had to return to the hospital. We are thinking of going up to Prescott for the night tonight.


Tuesday, July 7th. Shirl bought me a foot massager at Walmart for my birthday. I've been having a problem with soreness in my right heel. The massager helps. While we were out and about, we stopped for a half donut each and a split coffee at Lamars - they have really good donuts. Ada's memorial service was held over in Sun City and we brought three of the ladies from the park with us. Paul and Louise also came down from Dewey and brought our dear friend Dorothy with them. The service was nice and afterwards we went to Rick and Norene's for a nice dinner spread and visit with the family. Ada will be sorely missed by everyone.


Monday, July 6th. Barb's plane was right on time and we went back to Kerri's for dinner. Kerri's grill has a hotter flame than ours and I almost burned the pork chops but Kerri thought of them in time to save them. This morning, I worked at the church for a few hours on SVdP activities. There were over 100 client sheets to update. June's activity was over 200 requests, almost doubled from the May requests.


Sunday, July 5th. We had a great time with the kids and grand kids yesterday. It was so good to see them after so many years. This morning we went to the 7:30 Mass and then to the 5 and Diner for breakfast. Shirl's niece Barb is flying in from Omaha this evening. We will pick her up at the airport. Then back to Kerri's for dinner.


Saturday, July 4th. Happy Birthday USA... Today we are having a barbecue at Chip and Diane's and we get to see three of Chip's children from Massachusetts. It has been too many years since I've seen them. They flew in last night from the East. It's a busy day for eating because the park is providing free hot dogs and hamburgers at noon for the residents that are here for the summer.


Thursday, July 2nd. Very sad day today. Shirl's sister Ada passed away this morning. It's actually a blessing because she has suffered so much since getting Parkinson's Disease. Now she can rest.


June 2009

Tuesday, June 30th. The clock in the motel room malfunctioned making clicking sounds and woke us up from a sound sleep so we unplugged it. Then trains went by off and on all night. What with all that we decided to leave for home at 4:00AM. The temperature was 48 in Gallup when we left. We had a McBurrito for breakfast in Holbrook and arrived home at 9:00AM. We are glad that we made the big road trip and had a great time together but we are tired out and need to rest a few days from our vacation.


Monday, June 29th. We spent the weekend in Denver with Dave and Denise and met Sheyla, her husband Ted, Tory, Evan, and the two dogs Lizzie and Griz. Denise's daughter Heather came over with her son Brendon for a visit too. We had a great time and ate too much. Dave and Denise bought us a great Chinese dinner last night, including some plum wine which we had never had before. It was really good. We left Denver this morning at 7:45 AM and arrived in Gallup, NM at about 5:45PM. Our hotel is right next to the railroad tracks. We went to dinner at Applebees and of course Applebees is on the other side of the tracks. You guessed it - a train came through just as we were about to cross the tracks. We are heading for home in the morning.


Friday, June 26th. Where has the week gone? We stayed with Bobbie and Warren until Wednesday morning. They beat us into the ground playing Hand and Foot each day. Wednesday morning we drove to Logan and saw a great religious museum and then we had lunch at ADA J's Feed Bunk. We then went down to Barb and Myron's home in Pisgah. We had a nice visit with them and played some Cribbage. We at least won a few games there. This morning we drove down to Omaha to see Shirl's good friend Kay. Tomorrow we will drive to Denver to see Shirl's son Dave and family.


Monday, June 22nd. Bobbie and Warren took us on a tour of the Loess Hills in the morning. We saw the old Mann school and went to the ranger station. Very interesting how the soil of the Loess hills was formed. In the afternoon they beat us soundly at Hand and Foot again.


Sunday, June 21st. Great breakfast with Larry and Marianne in the morning. They have a 19 year old goldfish named Kirby. We'll talk more about him later. He has a very interesting story. We drove over towards Warren and Bobbie's and arrived in the early afternoon. We stopped at the Dennison Walmart because we hadn't been to one in a while. We bought various medications including a foot pad for my heel. Bobbie had prepared some goulash which I absolutely love. We played a few games of Hand and Foot and they wiped us out.


Saturday, June 20th. We drove up to Sheffield, IL to visit with Marv and Phyllis Polte but on the way, IL Rte 40 was closed because of flooding, so we started out on the detour but every time the GPS told us to take a turn, the road was closed. Finally after a few phone calls to the Poltes, we found our way to their home and had a short but nice visit. We then drove over to visit Shirl's niece Marianne and her husband Larry in Panora, IA. We had a nice dinner and played cards(Baseball). Marianne won.


Friday, June 19th. Chip and Diane's wedding day. In the morning, we played some more pinochle games and this time Liz and Shirl won five out of seven - so, they are catching up. We drove up to Morton and checked into the Travelodge. Hit some rain and hail on the way from Springfield. We hated to say goodbye to our friends Liz and Larry. They were great hosts. The wedding was wonderful and they are a very happy couple. Diane's dad had everyone over to the local country club for a great dinner after the ceremony. We had a nice time visiting with Chip, Diane and Chip's friends Lynn and Seth, who came over from Indianapolis.


Thursday, June 18th. Larry and I beat Shirl and Liz 19 out of 20 games of pinochle. Of course we didn't want to rub it in, but ... We drove out to New Salem in late morning and enjoyed the reproduction of the village where Lincoln lived before coming to Springfield. It was nice but extremely humid. Larry had a pair of needle nose pliers and was able to extract the CD adapter from the cassette player so now we have rectified a few of the problems that we had on our first day out. Liz and Larry took us out for dinner at the Texas Roadhouse as a wedding gift and we played cribbage for awhile afterwards. Liz and Shirl won - a lot.


Wednesday, June 17th. Today we visited the Lincoln Tomb, his home, the Old State Capitol, and the Lincoln Library and Museum. It was a really enjoyable day. We also found a hubcap replacement for the van. In the evening, after we went to Steak and Shake for dinner, we watched Defiance.


Tuesday, June 16th. We woke this morning to a severe thunderstorm warning in the Lebanon area, so we decided to hit the road quickly. When I was carrying the stuff to the car, I managed to pull off the rest of the Styrofoam on the cooler, so it's a total goner. As we started out we noticed the darkest clouds either of us had ever seen and the winds were severe. We hit rain almost immediately and it was coming down in sheets. The weather channel on the CB notified us that there was a severe weather alert with wind gusts up to 60MPH on I-44 between mile 127 and 175 as we rolled along at mile marker 136 - oops. Fortunately, we made it through with no incident other than poor visibility and an occasional wind gust. It stopped raining after a while so we stopped at a Jack in the Box for a burrito and when we came out it was raining in sheets again, so we got soaked on the way back to the car. There was an umbrella in the car but we forgot to bring it in. Here we were traveling on Historic Route 66 equipped with a CB, two cell phones, a road atlas, a GPS, a laptop and a bible. I'm driving and Shirl's praying. We had rain most of the way to Springfield, IL but we made it and it was good to see our friends Larry and Liz again. We arrived at around 11:00AM and had an enjoyable remainder of the day playing cards and watching The Reader.


Monday, June 15th. We started out from Amarillo with a continental breakfast at the Super 8 and continued on to Groom, TX, where we stopped to view the enormous cross there. They also have the Stations of the Cross done in life-sized bronze statues. It's very moving to see it. Shirl managed to break apart the $1.98 Wal-Mart Styrofoam cooler by pulling a big chunk out of it when moving it around. She didn't like it much anyway because it squeaked when it rubbed against anything. We stopped early today in Lebanon, MO because we were both very tired. The room was a lot smaller than the one we had in Amarillo. There was only one lamp by the bed, so we decided to move a floor lamp from the other side of the room to Shirl's side. It only had a 75 watt bulb, so we moved the 100 watt bulb from the wall lamp on the far wall, put the 75 watt on my side, which only had a 60 watt and put the 60 on the far wall. The other problem was that there were then three things to plug in by the bed (the two lamps and the clock radio) but only two plugs. Fortunately, I had a surge protector plug to solve the problem. Tomorrow we will be on the final leg of the first part of our journey when we stop in Springfield, IL to see our friends Larry and Liz.


Sunday, June 14th. We were anxious to get started on our trip, so of course neither of us was able to sleep past 12:30AM this morning. We finally got back to sleep around 2:30 and didn't get started until 5:45AM. We had a beautiful ride up to Payson and had breakfast there at the Beeline Diner. On the next leg of the journey, the CB antenna managed to fall off the roof -- twice. We also lost a hubcap from the right front wheel and I managed to jam the cassette CD adapter into the radio so that we can't get it out. It's a good thing that I prayed for the Lord to keep us safe on our trip today. Who knows what would have happened if I hadn't asked Him for help. We stopped in Amarillo for the night and ate the ham sandwiches that we had made. On both of our sandwiches, one slice of bread was dried out and the other slice was soggy... go figure.


Friday, June 12th. This is hard to believe but when we went over to the church to fill out the mysterious last form on Tuesday, we waited for 20 minutes and the deacon never showed up to administer the "quiz". I left a couple of messages on his voice mail and after waiting 20 minutes for him, we left. The next morning, he showed up while we were working at SVdP and told us that he had fallen asleep and missed our appointment. OK... so then, Shirl and I individually had to go to a back meeting room and swear on a Jerusalem bible that we would tell the truth about the questions we were being asked. So -- we swore... The questions were not very hard, like when were you baptized, et cetera. We finally got that over with. We did get to go through a dress rehearsal for the wedding and finally on Thursday morning, yesterday, we got married - again. The service was actually very nice. Afterwards, we were supposed to sign a certificate stating that we were married but the paper wasn't ready because the person that had it wasn't at work yet. We are still waiting to hear about when we have to go back to sign the papers. This whole process has been very long and degrading. Maybe it will finally be over when we sign the paper.


Tuesday, June 9th. We started off the day with a nice brisk walk around the park after Wilbur stopped by to drop off the Onawa paper. After breakfast we headed over to Discount Tire to get a new set for the upcoming trip. The people over at Precision Tire suggested that the old tires had dry rot, which is a common malady for tires here in Arizona. We had taken the van to Precision to get an oil change and to make sure that the belts and hoses were OK. They were. Anyway, we'll feel safer on the trip now. After the tire shop, we dropped off some cleaning and stopped for a nice old fashioned sour cream donut at Lamar's Donut Shop. They have the best donuts around here. Then we came home and started work on the garage sale table that we use for dining. We had previously shimmed all of the drop leaves but the whole center post was wobbling. We scoured around for some shims and found some. We now have some seventeen or so shims sticking out in various points under the table. We do have a very nice dining room table but enjoy the adventure of shimming the garage sale table. This whole problem started during a Ladies Bridge game when one of the ladies leaned on the table and the shims started falling on the floor and the cards started sliding toward the edge of the table. Thank goodness that the water glasses were on TV trays. After we finally got the table nice and steady, we played some Honeymoon Bridge and after a while Shirl said “Look at the Floor”. There on the floor were two shims that had fallen out, so the adventure continues.
Between the shimming and the Bridge we went to see My Life in Ruins. It's a cute movie but wont win any academy awards.

The highlight of this evening will be a visit to the church to fill out more forms for the validation of our marriage. This makes the 6th interview with someone from the church to try to sort this out. It's a good thing that the church didn't exist when Adam and Eve were around or they would never have started the human race.
We have a 7th meeting tomorrow to finalize the ceremony and we think that we will redo our vows on Thursday - we hope!


Saturday, June 6th. We spent a nice evening with Mike and Bob last night watching Last Chance Harvey. They are leaving for a week in Ohio. This morning we had breakfast with Chip at Cracker Barrel. That's always a good time. After breakfast, we cleaned up the "big" van and went to see the movie Up. Great movie, both of us really enjoyed it. This evening we went to mass and then for dinner at the Outback. There's a dance at the clubhouse tonight that we will be attending as well.


Friday, June 5th. We had a great time over to Lori's last night. Jaidyn is getting so big and cute. She's is crawling everywhere and very intent on capturing our glasses. Brody is out of school for the summer and is determined to do enough reading to get a free ticket to a Diamondbacks game. We played bridge this morning and I won first place. First time in a long time. Tonight we are headed for Mike and Bob's to have Chinese food and watch a movie. Tomorrow morning, it's breakfast with Chip and off to see the movie Up.


Tuesday, June 2nd. Yesterday was a busy day for the St. Vincent de Paul conference. We processed 22 clients. Things are really rough in the economy here. We went over to see Shirl's sister Ada in the afternoon. It was her 91st birthday. While we were there, many of the rest of the family stopped by to wish her well. Sons, grandchildren and great grandchildren all were there.
Last night we stayed home and watched The Constant Gardener. It's a sad story about countries and businesses exploiting the poor and sick in Africa. We are going out to breakfast this morning with the Rooses and the Ulricks. They will both be leaving Desert Shadows this week. This afternoon, we will get two new tires for the Chevy van.


March, April and May 2009

Saturday, May 30th. We went up to the clubhouse for donuts this morning. Unfortunately, Safeway messed up the order that the donut ladies had made and we got some stale old-fashioneds. You could taste the grease. Afterwards, we took a trip out to find the dump, so we could drop off Kerri's old dryer. We went to the old Skunk Creek site first and found out that it is permanently closed. There was a sign on the gate explaining that we needed to go up the east frontage road of I-17 to get to the new site. We went as far as Jomax Rd and thought that we went too far, so we turned back. Then we decided that we had not gone far enough, so we went back around and fortunately we were following a pickup with a tarp covered trailer and we figured that he was heading for the dump, so we followed him. Before you know it, we were in a convoy of trucks, all towing tarp covered trailers (except for us), and so we knew that we were headed in the right direction. We got there and dropped the dryer off in a big building with about 30 other dryers. Next time we'll know where to go. After the dump, we swung back around to see Ada and Kerri at the group home. Kerri had done a real nice job on Ada's hair and also did her toenails and fingernails. Ada will turn 91 on Monday.


Friday, May 29th. We did get to see Angels and Demons yesterday. The plot was a little farfetched but the action was exciting. We had a busy day today. We played Bridge in the morning with Chick finishing in second place. That's the first time in over a month that Chick didn't finish close to last. After Bridge, we met Mari for lunch at Chili's. They have excellent tortilla chips and salsa. Went down to B and B appliances and picked up a refurbished dryer for Kerri. We stopped by Rick and Norene's to get a dolly for the dryer. Rick went with us to install the dryer but we needed an exhaust kit, so we went to Ace Hardware to pick one up and then back to Kerri's to install it. On the way to Ace, we stopped by St James to make an appointment with Father Robert for next Thursday. Afterwards, we took Wilbur to the Cracker Barrel to have the Friday night fish fry. It's a nice time for all of us.


Thursday, May 28th. Shirl and I are going over to Kerri's this morning while a repairman is fixing her dryer and bathroom overhead light. If we get done early enough, we will go to the movies this afternoon to see Angels and Demons.


Monday, May 25th. Memorial Day. There's a potluck up at the clubhouse this noon. Shirley is playing bridge with the ladies this morning and I will meet her there.


Sunday, May 24th. Shirley and I are having a quiet weekend. On Friday, we went to Emi's graduation and then on to Mary Coyle's for a treat. Yesterday, for the first time in about a year, we stayed in for the evening. We normally go to church at 4:00 and then out for dinner and a margarita. Today, we are going to the 7:30 AM mass and have no specific plans for the rest of the day.


Friday, May 22nd. Emi graduated from Valley Academy this evening and we went to Mary Coyle's afterward for ice cream. Lots of fun.


Thursday, May 21st. Today was a difficult day. We all missed Bunnie on her birthday. She left us too soon but is always with us in our hearts.


Wednesday, May 20th. Another St Vincent de Paul day today. We are low on funds but did put out about 10 food boxes this morning. We are in the process of having our marriage validated in the catholic church and are making a bit of progress. We have an appointment with a counselor tomorrow to get one step closer. Such bureaucracy. Emi's graduation from 8th grade is scheduled for Friday night and we are excited about going. Afterward, we will all go to Mary Coyle's for ice cream.


Sunday, May 17th. We had a nice visit with Jim and a great day yesterday with the family. Star Trek was very good and we had a wonderful evening at Mari and Terry's with some good food and reminiscing about things that happened when the kids were growing up.


Friday, May 15th. Jim is in town and we hope to see him this evening and tomorrow. We are planning to see Star Trek and have a barbecue tomorrow.


Thursday, May 14th. Shirl and I went for a walk and to church this morning. We took a bike ride this afternoon. It's real quiet in the park now that most people have left - it's HOT too.


Monday, May 11th. Shirley went to the doctor today for her eye problem. We thought it was getting better but it still tears up. The doctor thinks it's and allergy and is treating it as such. I worked at the church this morning. So many people need financial help and we just don't have the resources.


Sunday, May 10th. Mari, Terry and the kids came over and brought some flowers and a card to Shirley. Shirl's daughter Kerri came over for dinner this evening to celebrate Mothers Day. She brought a nice coconut cream pie from Marie Callendars - yum. We had a quiet day at home. It's been over 100 degrees for the past few days, so it's good to stay inside. Mothers Day. Bunnie was always a great mother and we honor her this special day. We will always have her with us in our hearts.
Of all the earthly things God gives,
There's one above all others:
It is the precious, priceless gift
Of loving Christian mothers.


Saturday, May 9th. Had breakfast with Chip this morning up at Cracker Barrel. Most of the winter visitors have left the park so things have quieted down for the summer. This evening after mass, we went to the Outback for coconut shrimp and margaritas. yum...


Thursday, May 7th. Shirley's eye infection is almost healed and she is feeling better. We are getting excited about Jim's visit next week and look forward to spending some time with him.


Monday, May 4th. Working at SVdP this morning. Shirley has an eye infection and will see the doctor this morning.


Sunday, May 3rd. Tomorrow is our one month anniversary and today we are staying at home to relax. Our wedding was wonderful. We had many of our family and friends in attendance. Several people have told us that it was the most enjoyable wedding that they have ever been to. The people here at Desert Shadows are so generous. We had asked for no gifts nor cards but that if they cared to, contributions could be made to the American Cancer Society. Over $612 was donated on our behalf. We also received over $200 in gift cards and have been enjoying those for the past month. Last evening we went to the Macaroni Grill using one of our gift cards and had shared their pork chop dinner - it was great.


Monday, April 27th. Went to Prescott for the day.


Saturday, April 25th. John C Lincoln sponsored a volunteer lunch at Embassy Suites. Later we went to a Diamondbacks game.


Tuesday, April 21st. We played cards with Liz and Larry Ryner.


Sunday, April 5th. We returned from Boulders and went to Lori's for additional time with Rick before he went back to New York.


Saturday, April 4th. Our Wedding Day. We had a wonderful informal ceremony at the clubhouse with Pastor Paul Hayes presiding. We had over 200 people at the wedding. Everyone loved it. We went to see sister Ada at the care center after the ceremony and we told her we needed to leave to go to Boulders for our honeymoon. She said, "Don't let me stop you".


Friday, April 3rd. Deb arrived on Thursday, Rick and Dave came in on Friday. Mari and Terry had us over to their home for family members to get acquainted. We had a great time.


Friday, March 27th. We are so happy that Rick and all of Shirley's children (Debbie, Kerri, and Dave) will be here for the wedding. We are still hoping that Jim and Karen will be able to make it too.


Tuesday, March 24th. We met with Pastor Paul from Calvary this afternoon and have set the wedding date for April 4th here at Desert Shadows. Now we will have a hectic time getting ready. We both want to have all of our children here for the happy event.


Monday, March 23rd. Shirley has accepted my proposal and we will be married soon. We are both very happy and look forward to our life together.


Monday, March 16th. Shirley and I just got back from a trip to Florida to visit Jim and Karen and her daughter Deb and husband John. We had a wonderful time. Jim did a fantastic job of getting us to and from Orlando by way of Milwaukee. We got to view the Discovery shuttle launch from Jim's back yard on Sunday.


Sunday, March 8th. We are both excited about our upcoming trip to Florida to see Jim and Karen as well as Shirl's Deb and John. Last night we had a great band at the clubhouse and danced until our legs were sore.


Wednesday, March 4th. We went on a bus trip to Organ Stop Pizza in Mesa today. The organ is an awesome piece of equipment. The pizza was OK.


Monday, March 2nd. It's warming up in Phoenix. Temperature is close to 90 degrees today.


February 2009

Sunday, February 22nd. Yesterday, Shirley and I went with Terry and Mari to the Renaissance Festival. We had a great time. This was Shirley's first time to the Festival and she didn't know what to expect. We saw many acts but the best of the day was "Hey Nunny Nunny". Two nuns doing a comedy routine.


Wednesday, February 18th. Last night was the first of two nights for the Desert Shadows Talent Show. Mike and Bob came for the show. Unfortunately, Mari, Terry, and the grand kids were not able to come. We had a great time doing our Foster Brooks and Dean Martin skit. We get to do it again tonight for the final show.


Saturday, February 14th. Rick went to Schenectady to represent the family at Bonnie's funeral. We are all so glad that he did that. He sent us a long email about the visit and some photos that brought back lots of memories to all of us here in Phoenix.


Thursday, February 12th. Shirley and I went to an Iowa Reunion get together at the Old Country Buffet in Peoria today. This is a yearly event and there was a good group of people there. Good food and lots of fun. This afternoon we played cribbage at the clubhouse.


Monday, February 9th. We received from very sad news on Sunday. Our niece Bonnie passed away on Saturday evening after a long battle with cancer. It's a horrible disease. Too many members of our family have left us because of it.


Saturday, February 7th. We were supposed to have breakfast with Chip this morning but he had other plans, so we went to a Pancake breakfast at the clubhouse. There was a man there who had been stationed at Fort Devens and as we were reminiscing, he asked me if I remembered Kimball's Ice Cream. It's a small world.


Tuesday, February 3rd. Shirley's friends Bobbie and Warren are here for the week, visiting from Iowa. Yesterday we took them on a trip to Fort Verde, Montezuma's Castle, Jerome, and Prescott. A long and tiring but fun day. This morning, Wilbur took us all to breakfast at Cracker Barrel.


January 2009

Wednesday, January 21st. We celebrated Shirley's birthday on Monday at The Golden Corral in Glendale with her daughter Kerri and four other family members. This week we've had several practice sessions with the Barbershop Sextet that I'll be singing with in the Talent Show next month in addition to the Airline Pilot skit. We'll be singing "Oh Baby Mine". This afternoon I'll be over at the church delivering food boxes.


Saturday, January 17th. Shirley and I went over to Mike's and Bob's last night after having fish fry at Cracker Barrel and watched Eagle Eye. Pretty good movie and good company. Today, we went to see Gran Torino with Clint Eastwood. Great movie. Shirley and I are getting ready to do a skit in the Desert Shadows Talent Show next month. We're doing a Foster Brooks skit about being an airline pilot. I've also been asked to sing "Oh Baby Mine" with a group of men during the same show.


Thursday, January 15th. What can I say? I've been very neglectful in updating the site. I am well and busy. This month, Shirley and I went to Emi's 14th birthday party on the 10th, I sang a solo (How Great Thou Art)at the Desert Shadows church on the 4th and appeared in a play on the 13th. The play is called "The Little Red Schoolhouse", a comedy about a one room school. I'm still involved with SVdP twice per week and play cards twice a week as well. Next month, Shirley and I will be in a talent show playing an old Foster Brooks skit from the Dean Martin show.



2008

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