It’s Good To Be Home

Mom and I stuck close to home the first part of the week, knitting and talking. Various family members come and go during the day and I would walk across the road to visit with my sister and brother in law. I cooked salmon for all of us on Monday evening.

The entire family lives within a mile radius of each other–my Mom, my two siblings and their children. We can almost yell at each other from the respective houses! Visiting is easy–no long distances to travel.

Thursday morning my brother Ross deposited me at the airport in Little Rock and my long day of travel began. I always am most concerned about departure and arrival times for flights I book, seldom paying attention to the layover times. That’s going to change! I had a 3.5 hour layover in Denver and Southwest was running late giving me a 4.5 hour layover–UGH!!! The Denver airport was an absolute zoo–super crowded, noisy, chaotic!

The Cowboy and Emmi were so glad to see me as I was them! Friday I had a bad case of jet lag managing to unpack the suitcases and do some laundry but that was about it.

The Cowboy has been on a mission to eliminate the critters who keep digging under our trees. The trees are watered, the ground is soft and the critters dig. So far it’s critters 0 and the Cowboy 4!!

Dan and Louanne have been having a rough go of it lately and needed the Cowboy’s expertise–plumber and mechanic skills. As a thank you they presented him with the absolute best thank you present–

Sunday afternoon we needed a few groceries and made a run to Wilcox taking advantage of that gift card and the local Dairy Queen. That’s a great thank you present!

On Friday afternoon in Arkansas they had snow–about three inches. My niece Niki took this beautiful photo with her iPhone–it’s a winner!

Sunset in Arkansas

It’s a sunny but super windy day in Arizona. I would guess judging from the long range forecast that winter is over–lot’s of sunny, warm, dry days ahead.

Life is good.

We Take A Hike

Up front I want to apologize if in the last post I caused some of you to think I had covid with my statement about covid fatigue.  We don’t have covid but we are weary of all the ongoing covid issues.

Last Sunday the Cowboy’s cousin Pat and his daughter Julia arrived for a short visit. We so enjoyed talking to both Pat and Julia. Julia has a PhD in archeology and leads archelogy digs in Mongolia. Julia also speaks Mongolian. Her stories about that country and its people are so interesting. We enjoyed some 12 Springs beef (thanks Lonn) for dinner and I had baked a Million Dollar Pound Cake.

Monday was spent packing and cooking. Our good friend had surgery two weeks ago and is finally on the mend. We took dinner to them Monday night and shared the calories of that Million Dollar Pound Cake plus I gifted Linda and Janice some cake calories!😁

Tuesday morning I was off and running–heading for the Tucson airport. My flight from Tucson to Little Rock was just one stop–Denver–then the same plane continued on to Little Rock. I was on that plane from 11:30am until 5:30pm. In Denver the plane was unloaded and re-loaded within 30 minutes. And in that six hours I was offered two bags of party mix as food. Sure am glad I packed apples and cheese plus some of that pound cake!

My brother Ross retrieved me from the airport and we were at Mom’s house shortly–he drives fast but at least he can still drive–2021 was a rough year for him!!

Thursday we drove to the Pine Bluff area to have lunch with Mom’s group of ladies from her church. We’ve spent hours talking and knitting, knitting and talking. Mom and I are trying to make a hat and the pattern is challenging but the yarn is stunning stuff! On Friday we stopped at my nephew’s home to meet Clayton and Hannah’s new family member–Magnolia Kayte–such a sweety!! We then journeyed to Little Rock (45 minutes) for some retail therapy first visiting the new Costco store–Arkansas’s first.

Mom found things she couldn’t live without at Dillards, we had a quick lunch and came home. Sister in law Vicky provided dinner Friday night–pulled pork and all the fixings from a food truck in Sheridan–it was great! Niece Niki contributed a slaw and beans–as usual we ate well!

On Friday my one and only niece (I have three great nieces but Niki is the only niece) retrieved her Mom and me and we were off, heading for north Arkansas and the Richland Creek Wilderness Area. We were taking a hike–I walk daily, sometimes a lot but it’s been a long time since I’ve actually “hiked!” Niki is on a quest to hike somewhere at least once every month and this was her first hike in March.

It’s not quite spring in Arkansas and it was a gloomy, misty day so photos aren’t what they could have been but it was such a good day spent in the company of two people I love so much. The hike was easy, one mile to a spectacular waterfall with a quirky name–Fuzzy Butt!!

Fuzzy Butt Falls
Fuzzy Butt Falls
Six Fingers Falls                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Sunday lunch at Danny and Ann’s was another eat fest–brisket, smashed potatoes, Cesar salad, green beans and leftover desserts. Ann and I took a walk mid afternoon–it’s very warm, humid and the forecast is for storms tonight–yikes!
Little brother working hard building fence. He tried to talk me into operating the skidsteer but I declined.
Blue making sure Ross is still there–that dog never leaves Ross’s side.
Mom’s tulip tree is blooming as are the daffodils.

My hat, Mom is almost finished with her hat too!

The Cowboy and Emmi are enduring wind and cooler temps in Arizona. They participated in a garage sale yesterday at Dan and Louanne’s–the Cowboy was happy with his sales. And Louanne has been feeding him well.

Life is good!

Camera Cleaning–Edited

On Monday we continued to entertain. And just let me put this statement out there–I have such severe covid fatigue as in I want covid to go away! Lonn likes to take presents home to the family and finds the gift shops in national parks have the coolest stuff–and I agree. I love to shop in our national park gift shops–for cards, little trinkets to send friends and family, etc.

The Saguaro National Park on the west side of Tucson was a zoo. The parking lot was full and there was a 20 to 30 minute wait just to get inside the gift shop/visitor center as they are limiting the number of people who enter due to covid–thus my covid fatigue!

I called the Desert Museum which if you are ever in the Tucson area is a place worth visiting. My guys did not want to walk–the Desert Museum entails lots of walking–but I knew the gift shop was within the gates and the tickets to enter are too expensive to just pay only to go to the gift shop. A very pleasant customer service person answered the phone, told me they would take our credit card info and allow us a free thirty minute pass that could be renewed for an additional thirty minutes of gift shop browsing. Considering how much Lonn spent in the gift shop it is a smart decision on the part of the Desert Museum.

We drove through the Saguaro National Park, admiring the views and all the majestic, stately saguaros–Lonn was impressed! Lunch on the patio of BJ’s Restaurant as Emmi was with us–great food and great service.

We live in a valley that is nutty–as there are massive acres of land dedicated to growing pecans and pistachios.  Our good friend Linda gave us tequila flavored pistachios for Christmas and Lonn had sampled them. On the way home from Tucson we stopped at the local pistachio farm gift shop and spent some money.

The weather in Montana the first of this week was frightful–minus 29 degrees and a foot of new snow. In spite of this forecast Lonn decided it was time to head north and he was driving away Tuesday morning. It was such a good visit and it was so nice to have the guest house.

Larry and Geri visited us a couple weeks ago driving down in their new to them motorhome. We had the best visit–not doing much except visiting, catching up and eating. We did drive down to Douglas and attempted to get the title to our new to us truck notarized without success. And we visited Larry’s niece Megan and her husband Scott on the horse property they purchased last year–very near us.  Our electrical panel is just inside the back door situated over the shoe changing bench made by the Cowboy. Geri suggested we hang a mirror over the electrical box to hide it–that was one of our Mexico purchases–and it looks great!

Our neighbor who lost her husband to covid asked me to make an apron from one of his shirts. She had an apron she had purchased made from a shirt that I could use as a pattern. I finished and delivered it Thursday–Sue was totally thrilled!

The rest of the week we’ve been puttering. The Cowboy ordered parts for his chain saw, has it running and spent some time cutting a huge log into firewood. Then he practiced some cardio exercise by splitting those logs.

I am heading to Arkansas to visit family soon and have been getting things in order so the Cowboy and Emmi can function smoothly without me.

We’ve had a couple chilly mornings–not Montana chilly–but cold enough that a fire in the stove felt great! And it sprinkled rain at our house and snowed on the mountains. It’s been such a dry winter we are wondering if the poppies will bloom.

My Nikon camera had an inside the lens dust spot causing some but not all photos to have a bright spot. I knew Al had taken apart his cameras and cleaned the lens but his cameras are DSLR’s. My Nikon is a CoolPix P600 point and shoot with a 60X optical zoom.  I watched a video for another Nikon similar to mine and thought maybe we could get to the lens. The Cowboy as always was game to try.

And we were successful! No more bright spot on the photos!! Thanks Al!!

Cloudy skies make for beautiful sunsets.

We Have A Visitor

Usually I start a blog post early in the week but when we are busy I sit down on Sunday and think–“what have we done this week???” This is one of those Sundays but here goes!

Our visitor–Lonn, the Cowboy’s son arrived Thursday afternoon. He hasn’t visited since 2019 so it’s been great having him here. Lonn is going to tow our cargo trailer back to Montana filled with things we no longer need at this house such as RV related items and construction tools. The Cowboy has spent time gathering all that stuff.

I’ve filled my time with exercise and some sewing. Our elderly neighbor, Joe died about a year ago from covid. His wife Sue asked me to make an apron from one of Joe’s shirts. It’s been a fun process–deciding what parts of the shirt to use as the pocket or the ties, etc.

Last Saturday we took Emmi to the veterinarian in Green Valley. The clinic has reverted to not allowing pet owners inside the building so we were in the parking lot waiting for a technician. Another car parked beside us and a woman with her beautiful chocolate cocker spaniel got out. We chatted with a the woman while both our dogs were taken inside. She had lived in Green Valley a long time and we asked her about restaurants. She is a huge chili relleno fan as is the Cowboy–that’s the only thing he ever orders in a Mexican restaurant. She named a couple restaurants in Green Valley but said the best, absolute best chili relleno she had ever eaten in her life was from a restaurant in Sonita–the Copper Brothel Brewery.

We chatted some more, her pooch was brought out and as she was loading her cocker into her crate the lady asked me, “would you like some Meyer lemons, my tree is producing well?”  Well, of course!! Oh, my–those lemons are a world away from the hard, bitter lemons we’ve been getting from the grocery stores. I made a lemon cake that was divine and I may make a lemon meringue pie. It pays to be friendly!!

We have not talked to the veterinarian but have received a voicemail and an email. Emmi’s liver enzymes are down but not completely normal as of yet.

Wednesday we were in Tucson all day again for another doctor’s appointment. It was a cool, windy, rainy day so Emmi went along. We enjoyed a nice lunch at BJ’s Brewhouse and made a quick Costco stop.

Thursday when Lonn arrived I grilled some burgers and later in the afternoon we headed to Whitewater Draw to see the sandhill cranes. The water level at the usual viewing area is significantly low and there weren’t many cranes. This area received good monsoon rains this summer but we have had less than one inch of rain all winter so far.

As we were driving away heading south, Lonn spotted a bunch of cranes out in the field. There was an open gate and a traveled path out to the birds. It appeared to us that the Arizona Fish and Game is pumping water using solar to create a wetland for the cranes–

And the cranes obviously thought it was a good idea–there were hundreds and hundreds of birds in and around the water, squawking away.

Friday we drove to Nogales, Sonora, Mexico–about two hours from our house. We parked and walked across the border. It’s been years and years since we’ve been in Nogales and is was sad to see how things have changed. Many, many of the businesses/shops/restaurants are closed. The sidewalks used to teem with people–not on Friday–there were very few people on the streets. What businesses are open projected a desperate need to make a sale. There were always poor, unfortunate beggars on the streets of Nogales but on this day the beggars were different. Most were young adults and they too projected a sad, desperate feeling. Nogales was not a pleasant experience and I doubt we go back. It’s unfortunate that Mexico has allowed the drug trade to repress its people, very sad.

They let us come back to the US!!

Now, back to the chili relleno story. Sonita, Arizona is on the way home from Nogales and we stopped at the Copper Brothel Brewery for a late lunch. The Cowboy agreed with the lady from the vet clinic–best chili relleno he had ever eaten. Lonn had a chimichanga and also declared it the best he had ever eaten. I wasn’t adventuresome and had chicken strips with fries–but my meal was also very, very good. Definitely a restaurant worth revisiting!

Saturday the guys drove that same direction but this time hauling Lonn’s dirt bike and our side by side ATV. They rode from the town of Patagonia out into the countryside down to the Mexican border and had a great time.

Emmi and I went to Sierra Vista so I could get my hair cut and pick up a small grocery order. I was also picking up a side table I found on Craigslist. Back home I had to quickly get ready for a birthday party. Our friend Linda’s birthday party was being hosted by Mo and Donnie with help from the ever helpful Janice. It was a great gathering of friends with amazing food contributed by all the attendees.

Our birthday girl!

The guys were home by 6pm and dined on leftovers sent home from the birthday party. We’ve spent the evenings chatting and listening to the grandbabies when they call to Facetime with Grandpa Lonn. They called him Saturday morning and sang happy birthday–such cute, adorable kiddos!

Sunday after a big breakfast the guys were off to find another adventure–this time riding from the house up into the Dragoons. I tried to convince Emmi to go for a walk with me while the guys were getting ready. Nope, I’m not going anywhere except into this CanAm she said–so they took her along.

Monday we are off on another adventure with Lonn–life is good!

 

Before And After

On the fifteenth of February in 2017 the Cowboy and I closed on this property where we now reside for a portion of each year. We had purchased the property sight unseen through our realtor Pam, who we trusted. She viewed the property, took detailed photos and told us “you people are nuts” but in the next breath said, “with the talents you two have, this place has huge potential.” And she was right–it did have potential and all it took was a bit of money and tons of hard, physical, back breaking work over the five years living part time in Arizona.

It was two houses separated by a four foot space but both houses were under the same roof–or what was left of the roof and situated on three acres of land. According to neighbors, the houses had been abandoned for approximately 10 years. The house was advertised as having power (very important in this area as it costs $25/foot to run power to your lot), a well which we discovered was dry, and septic system.

We had a new well drilled, spread truck loads of gravel to contain the dust and got to work.

The original house was built in 1972 and we are not sure when the smaller of the two houses was added. This smaller house was in better condition and had less roof water damage than the main house. It had a finished (mostly) kitchen with refrigerator, dishwasher and gas range as well as a complete bathroom. We decided to live in the motorhome and finish what we started to call “the guest house.” We would then live in the guest house while finishing the main house.

This was our first glimpse of the houses when we arrived. Guest house to the right, main house with brick to the left. And our “glimpses” got worse!!

As you can see, both houses had traditional peaked roofs. I’ve always wanted a southwest, Santa Fe style house–so my Cowboy with a lot of hard work created one for me. Fixing the roofs was a priority that first spring of 2017.

DSCN3942

We now have a house that looks like this–

These two photos are of the guest house kitchen in its original state. We removed that weird center cabinet/eating area.

Guest House kitchen finished
Another photo of the guest house kitchen finished

The living room area had a dropped floor of about 8 inches and some weird doors and walls–the Cowboy raised the floor, removed walls and laid tile.

Guest house living room finished

And now for the main house–it was in sad condition, no kitchen, no plumbing, horrible roof leaks, nasty carpet. It’s still hard for us to believe we created this beautiful home. We built walls to move walls, moved way too many walls, hoisted a 300 pound beam into the ceiling of the living room, laid and grouted about 3000 square feet of tile, custom built kitchen cabinets, planted trees and added a watering system, picked up and disposed of tons of junk the previous owners left, added a garage, painted endless walls and ceilings, installed some new windows, hung insulation (ugh), installed heating and air conditioning, made countless trips to Sierra Vista and Tucson for supplies, and shopped Craigslist for furnishing. We hired someone to stucco the outside of the house, to pour the outside concrete porch floors and to test the mini split heating and air conditioning units–the rest of the incredibly hard work was done by the Cowboy and me. All that hard work just adds to our immense satisfaction with the finished home.

dscn3781
This room was a bedroom and is now our dining room.
And the dining room now.

dscn3782
The main house living room before, as you can see, we vaulted the ceiling.
Main house living room now. 
Original bathroom in the main house–downright scary! And we’ve been told the previous owners were a couple with five children!! Three bedrooms and one bathroom in the main house for seven people! 

And the master bath now–I wanted no glass doors or shower curtains to keep clean–the Cowboy delivered.

And this was what was left of the kitchen in the main house–

There was no working plumbing in the main house, the Cowboy had to jack hammer the concrete to move the bathroom and kitchen plumbing to the right places as we had moved walls. I had a magazine article describing a kitchen I loved–big windows, all drawers in the lower cabinets, no upper cabinets. We basically stuck with the design from the article with the exception of installing upper cabinets on the side of the kitchen without windows. I think the kitchen is my favorite room in the whole house, maybe–I love the porch too and the dining room, and the living room!!

These cabinets on the porch were obtained with another day of hard, back breaking work. The Cowboy saw the cabinets advertised on Craigslist for free–if someone would remove them from their location. It literally took us all day long to get those cabinets out of that house. We brought them home and the Cowboy remodeled the cabinets to make them fit our space–they add so much to the porch room.

So–that’s a lot of words and a lot of photos. And while we love our house and are so pleased with how it now looks it’s not something either of us wants to ever do again.

More Craigslist Treasures

My husband ranks right up there with my father and brother as one of the most hard working men I’ve ever known. I’ve been without a washing machine for about a week. Usually a load of laundry is done every couple days in our house. The laundry basket is full. But I wasn’t complaining or saying a word–we were waiting for plumbing parts.

Monday we had to be in Tucson all day–doctor’s appointment and a Craigslist buying expedition for art work. Our walls need something and we were successful.

Tuesday the hard working Cowboy went to work and he worked all day long, not even taking his usual after lunch break to examine the backs of his eyelids. By 6pm a load of laundry was in the washer. He re-plumbed the hot water tank, created a carpet covered platform for the front load washer and dryer, installed that heavy washer/dryer and made a hundred trips from laundry room out to the garage. By evening he was exhausted!

And he’s continued to work in that laundry room every day this week! He installed a shelf in that room and in a bedroom closet. Thursday and Friday he really went back to work–the laundry room sink and shelving were delivered. The sink required lots of plumbing parts the Cowboy didn’t have in his stash which required a trip to the hardware store. The local hardware store had what we needed.

And by midafternoon Friday, we had a laundry room sink. I’ve always bathed Emmi by putting her in the guest room bathtub and kneeling beside the tub. Hard on my bad knee, bad hip and makes my back hurt. Now I can stand and bathe the little munchkin in the sink–I am so excited!–doesn’t take much to excite me these days!

Installing the metal shelving was a different matter.

The shelving is being returned, the Cowboy managed to cobble together the box to re-pack it. The Amazon seller has a non working customer service number. Amazon refused to post the negative review I wrote about the non working telephone number and the damaged shelving saying it didn’t fit their review criteria. We’ve ordered more shelving and needless to say, I’m not finished with Amazon in this matter.

Dang it’s been cold in southeastern Arizona! We’ve had two mornings of 15 degrees lately!! And high temps have been below 50 degrees with a chilly wind. By mid week we will be back up in the mid 60’s, still freezing at night but warming up in the day time!

Friday evening the gang dined with us–Dan and Louanne, Linda and Janice. We had spaghetti and homemade bread–comfort food I say. Brownies and homemade ice cream for dessert.

Saturday afternoon we gathered at Linda’s with other friends to celebrate Janice’s birthday. Everyone contributed an appetizer and the afternoon was spent eating and enjoying the company. We had such a good time!

Sunday the Cowboy completed another work bench for the garage and retrieved Dan and Louanne’s “bikes”–a small Honda motorcycle and a scooter Dan likes to ride around town. Both were having issues so the mechanic Cowboy went to the rescue. Louanne’s was a quick fix, not sure about Dan’s yet. I puttered–exercised, washed clothes, visited with our neighbor Sue who dropped off a sewing project she wants me to do, and even napped a bit.

Life is good.

 

No More Ugly Yellow

Snow on the Dragoons

The ladies took a day off. Louanne and I were headed to Tucson early Monday morning. Driving to our first stop we were sure we were going to be in Phoenix soon! The Saddlebrook community is in far, far northeast Tucson and we were looking at some chairs I found on Craigslist–yep, more chairs. Louanne needs a recliner in a small room and didn’t want a huge, cushy recliner. Me to the rescue. Sunday morning I found these recliners and here begins the funny story!

I sent the link to Louanne, she loved them and I was willing to take one of them. Next I called the owner–nope, she had someone coming to see the chairs at 11am and those potential buyers were sure they would take the chairs. Dang it! But the owner would call if the people did not take the chairs.

Sunday morning while browsing Craigslist I spotted two more chairs that were simply stunning and said to the Cowboy, “I would love to have these chairs but we are kind of over stocked with chairs right now.” He agreed.

The owner of the two recliners called and said, “the people took the chairs.” And began to tell me she sold them way too cheaply, she made a mistake when creating the listing pricing the chairs as both instead of a price for each.” She told me the price and I said, “but wait a minute, I saw your ad for a much higher price of $…..” The owner said, “oh, that price is for the two recliners.”

She had two sets of chairs listed on Craigslist, the buyers purchased the chairs I would have loved to have but we are chair over stocked. The recliners were still for sale. Good grief! We all had a good laugh, Louanne and I drove to Saddlebrook on Monday and purchased the two recliners.

What’s not to love about dining outside on a patio in late January. We had a delicious meal at Eclectic Cafe. We made a Costco stop and spent a bit of time but not much money in Home Goods. One last stop at Sprouts for more of the amazing Toby’s salad dressings and we were headed for Sunsites.

Dan and Louanne had a tiny potted Christmas tree this year and as they did last year brought it out to us for planting. We’ve kept it in the garage, bringing it in and out into the sun each day. Tuesday it went into the ground in the spot where there had been an apple tree that bit the dust this summer. Our luck with apple trees is not good!

And–the most exciting news–we no longer have an ugly yellow laundry room. Thursday we moved the stacked washer/dryer out and Friday I painted the room. The tile is laid, new to us washer/dryer purchased, laundry sink and shelves ordered–we are going to have a nice laundry room.

The only photo I could find showing the ugly yellow of the laundry room.

Saturday morning early the stacked washer/dryer went to a new home and Sunday morning a chair and ottoman I had in our Congress, AZ house went to a new home.

In the midst of painting I almost had a catastrophe!! Thank goodness for Kimberly-Clark back table covers–they are water proof and evidently paint proof.

The USFS doing one of its prescribed burns on the back side of the Dragoons.

And today–almost five years to the day the last tile was laid and the last batch of grouting was finished. Done! It’s such a good feeling!

Watching TV the other night I got off track with sleeve knitting and had to rip out several rows–ugh! Sunday afternoon we went over to Louanne and Dan’s to help them with a couple projects–they have new smart TVs and Dan wanted to know how to cast YouTube from laptop to TV–done. And Louanne needed help with an email problem–done. And the Cowboy was conned into painting an arrow on both sides of a for sale sign Louanne was going to use on a couple lots they have for sale.

 

A This And That Kind Of Week

Last Sunday evening we dined at Dan and Louanne’s. Dan roasted a pre-seasoned tri tip he had purchased at Costco–it was simply amazing!! All the food was so good! As I’ve said before, we do dine well in this community!

It’s been a week of this and that so I thought I would share photos of some completed projects:

The bench the Cowboy built–placed by the back door for shoe removal.

And the porch–really it’s an enclosed room with large windows and a windowed door but it’s a great place to sit in the afternoon with the sun turning everything warm and golden. The leather chairs and ottomans are the ones we purchased from the Tucson Craigslist. The other chair and the tables came from a local garage sale. The office chair is the Cowboy’s favorite computer chair. The ceiling is painted blue–a contractor friend in Montana paints the ceiling of porches blue to keep out the evil spirits. I Googled “painting a porch ceiling blue” and found these reasons–

  1. The shade of blue used on many southern ceilings is often called “haint blue”. This light blue-green color is especially popular in southern coastal cities like Charleston, SC or Savannah, GA because of the historically haunted nature of these cities. The blue color was meant to ward off “haints” or evil spirits who might want to harm the house or the family inside.
  2. Many people argue that painting your porch ceiling blue actually keeps insects away. While not necessarily rooted in science, there are a few possible explanations for that theory. Older blue paints were often made with lye, which is a known insect repellent, and to keep the paint looking new, a new coat had to be applied every few years, thus refreshing the insect repellent. Another theory is that the blue color mimics the color of the sky and tricks insects into not making their nest there.
  3. While blue paint on a porch ceiling can’t literally extend the amount of daylight you get, it can provide that feeling. The light blue color reflects light, so your space will seem brighter even during the twilight hours. Additionally, you can use less artificial light to brighten up the space at night. This practice was really popular in the Victorian era, and you can still see the blue color used in many Victorian homes today.  From AndersonandRodgers.com

Tuesday we had a bit of rain making the outside world smell so clean and fresh.

The fog left behind from the rain made the hills look as if they were islands in the sea.

This hawk was facing the other way when I first saw him then the resident owls at our neighbor’s hooted. His head swiveled in the direction of the “hoots” and I could just hear him thinking–maybe I should depart this post!

Emmi has had a couple spa days–she gets so agitated when I’m clipping her hair that I try to complete the new haircut in a couple days instead of making her stand for so long. She is all nice and spiffy now.

The laundry remodel continues–the new drywall is in the ceiling and the cement board has been laid on one side of the room.

Friday we made a trip to Sierra Vista to purchase a couple items we found on Craigslist–Leki hiking poles and a Pfaff Tiptronic sewing machine. I had a pair of Leki poles and accidently left one in a motorhome we sold. Plus having a set in both homes was my goal–success, at a great price. I have a Pfaff Tiptronic in Montana and it’s a workhorse sewing machine–even hems denim. The Pfaff sewing machine I have here we purchased on Craigslist in Montana several years ago. It’s not one of Pfaff’s better machine and when the Cowboy saw the Tiptronic pop up on Craigslist off we went. Groceries plus lunch and we were on our way back home.

It rained again overnight with not much accumulation. Snow on the mountains. Sunday afternoon I joined the ladies at Linda’s to play Rummikub–a game that has evidently been around a long time. It’s fun and we have a good time.

It’s been a good week–I think!

That Didn’t Take Long

Sunday evening we had the best time! I outdid myself in the cooking department–even if I do say so! Smoked tri-tips, twice baked potatoes, Caesar salad with homemade dressing (that was divine!), and an apple sharlotka cake for dessert. It was the usual six of us–our safe clan–Louanne and Dan, Linda and Janice. We ate, laughed, talked and repeated. We had so much fun!

Monday we took a drive–I drove this time and we bounced and bumped along some extremely rocky roads when my navigator decided we needed to take the “scenic route.” We were in the area of Fort Bowie–a NPS maintained site. We didn’t stop at the Fort as the Cowboy wasn’t in the mood for walking the required 1.5 miles into the site. Louanne and I will have to do that one. But the scenery was stunning! We drove out into the BLM Indian Bread Rocks site–huge rocks, lots of boondockers, windy and chilly.

Our plan had been to eat at the steakhouse/bar in Bowie where we’ve eaten once before. Nope, closed and for sale–another covid causality! Next choice was the steakhouse in Willcox–nope, closed on Monday. We finally landed at a favorite Mexican restaurant–way too chilly to sit outside. There were only two other diners present as it was 2pm in the afternoon.

Back home I got a good start on that pesky sweater sleeve and am now feeling comfortable with the process. For Christmas the Cowboy gifted me this set of really short stainless steel ChiaoGoo circular knitting needles. When I started using the set I was concerned that my arthritic hands would not be able to hang onto those little short needles. I am having no problems with the needles and I love how easy it makes knitting narrow circumferences in the round.

I’m thinking a new camera may be in my future–my Nikon has a spot on the lens which causes light spots to appear on subjects in certain lighting–you can see the light spot on the sleeve of the sweater.

The Cowboy is in the process of making a bench. In Montana we have a mudroom entry way and he built a beautiful bench for sitting down to remove your shoes. I wanted a smaller bench for the back door entry way into this house–he is delivering!

Remember in a blog post several weeks ago I said the laundry room was the last of the projects for this house remodel and that it could wait, it wasn’t a priority?? On Wednesday the Cowboy started demolition on one half the laundry room–he will mud the drywall and lay the tile floor. When that’s finished we will move the stackable washer/dryer which came with this house out and complete the room. There is also a hot water heater in that room that will have to be moved. So–that didn’t take long!

Friday we made a run to Sierra Vista–Walmart pickup order and a quick dash into Home Depot. We went through the drive through at Culvers and ate in the truck–covid is getting so old!!

Saturday we went to a garage sale where the Cowboy scored some steel fence posts (I don’t like the sound of that!) and grinding wheels. We made a dump run and went down to the Mustang Mall–our only gas station/convenience store and it’s 10 miles one way–to get gas and real tortillas (actually from Mexico).

Fog or funk from the two large dairies over in that valley??

 

 

Garage Door Opener, Knitting, Friends

We both are so enjoying being finished with this house/project/restoration. One of us seems to remark almost daily, “it feels so good to be finished!” The Cowboy created a cabinet that goes over the master bath toilet that will hide the pump for the mini split heating/air conditioning unit plus provide a bit of storage. I need to paint that cabinet and some doors but compared to what we were doing it seems like a vacation!

The Cowboy now has a working garage door opener from a box of parts! That was a heavy, insulated garage door we hauled to Arizona from Montana. The door was salvaged along with several others from a building being demolished on the ranch where Lonn lives. The other salvaged doors are still in our barn in Montana. We built the garage the first spring we owned this place in 2017 and we’ve been lifting that heavy door by hand–now it has an opener! YEA!

I’ve finished the body of my sweater and now on to the much dreaded sleeves. So far I think I have “picked up and knitted” then “ripped out” the stitches around the armhole to start the sleeve a total of FIVE times! I am “wearing out” the yarn!

Thursday we drove to Sierra Vista–a Home Depot run for cabinet paint, a light fixture for the guest house and miscellaneous items. Our Walmart grocery order was without issues and we so enjoyed sitting in the sun in our shirt sleeves having lunch at Culvers on an early January day.

We sat outside Thursday evening on our porch and watched the sun go down–still in our shirt sleeves–what a beautiful day!

In 2012 when we stayed in Cedar Key, Florida for two months we met Jerry and Wanda from Mississippi. Jerry wrote a blog, Eggs Rolling–he and Wanda do their traveling in a Casita. They have visited us in Montana and we’ve stayed in touch through blog reading and Facebook. Jerry doesn’t write the blog any longer and we had no idea they were in Arizona until last night I saw on Facebook they had been at the Cochise Stronghold. Well, the Stronghold is just up the road from us. I commented on their post and sent them an email. Friday afternoon they stopped by to visit and see our finished project. It was so good to visit with them again and hear those southern voices!

Friday I dropped by our great little library to reserve a book I wanted to read. The county and our librarian are once again restricting the number of people who can be in the library at one time and everyone must wear a mask. Arizona’s covid numbers have skyrocketed and we are again thinking twice about going to restaurants and any other place where people are not masking.

We’ve had a couple gray, cool, breezy days and a bit of rain is in the forecast. We will see if the weather man is correct!

But cloudy days do make for beautiful sunsets–

Life is good!