Category Archives: Wow!

Baby Beanies!

Gold Canyon, Arizona

Oh my goodness!

I just got a wonderful thank you email and photos from a Boise hospital for the baby hats I’ve been knitting.

While Dean and Lil were visiting, Lil offered to transport 50 hats back to Boise and give them to a friend whose daughter works in the NICU (neonatal intensive care unit).

She sent me pictures of one of the hats on a newborn baby girl!

Made me  smile and made my day!

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I’m off to knit some more…

$1.8 Million View

Gold Canyon, Arizona

We are sandwiched in between several luxury motor homes, but one stands out above the rest.

It’s made by Newell. All pricing for coaches made by Newell begins at $1.5 million.

As near as I can tell from snooping around, our neighbours’ model retails for $1.8 million.

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So that means we have a nearly $2 million view with just that one motor home.

We haven’t met the owners yet. They haven’t been here much. But I’m hoping to get a tour of the insides.

Here are some photos of random insides of some Newell coaches.

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I’m in Love with Simon

El Mirage, Arizona

There’s a new man in my life, and his name is Simon.

I just met him for the first time yesterday, but it was love at first sight! At least on my side…

Here’s a picture of Simon.

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Simon is “The Perfect, Portable, Practical Pickleball Partner”. (If you remove “Pickleball” from the tag line, Simon sounds like a vibrator. 🙂 )

Carol and I went to a training at our resort yesterday and were introduced to Simon for specific practice drills.

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What a blast!

Simon is the best! He pitches lobs, dinks, and drops to us so we can perfect our shots.

I felt like a nearly professional athlete as I played against Simon.

Too much fun!

Sailor’s Delight

Gold Canyon, Arizona

Prettiest sunset we’ve seen here last night.

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Red sky at morning, sailors take warning;

Red sky at night, sailors’ delight.

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Alas, these pictures don’t do the scene justice. The blue in the sky was almost smurf turf blue in intensity. And the orange was much brighter. Maybe it’s a foreshadowing of Boise State University winning the Fiesta Bowl later this week. Go Broncos! 🙂

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I wondered where the warning vs delight saying came from. According to Wikipedia,

In the Bible at Matthew 16:2-3, Jesus is quoted as saying:

When it is evening, you say, “It will be fair weather; for the sky is red.”
And in the morning, “It will be stormy today, for the sky is red and threatening.”

With the intense colors we saw last night, Phoenix sailors must be super delighted.

Home(r) Improvements

Gold Canyon, Arizona

Rich had been waiting for us to get to a spot where we’re going to stay for a bit to do some home improvements on Homer.

One of those improvements was to install special screens that block sunlight and heat. We ordered a set of three for the front and side windows. Unfortunately it took a month to get the screens.

So we’ve been living in what feels like a tunnel to try to block the Arizona heat and light.

We close the front side windows and lower the sunblocking shade on the front window.

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They work relatively well to block the heat, but they also block out vision–we can’t see out.

Makes living in Homer a bit claustrophobic. (Not this kind… The other kind. 🙂 )

claustrophobiaRich put the screens on this weekend. What a huge difference they make! We can look outside all day long!

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During the day, people can’t see in but at night they can so we will close the shades at night.

But first thing in the morning, we will open up and see the world again. Nice…

Sophie loves them almost as much as I do. 

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Now when she’s driving us crazy, we can say, “What is it?” And she’ll leave us alone to go check out what’s happening on our street… 🙂

A few more photos of Homer’s insides for those who are curious.

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Beep Beep

Gold Canyon, Arizona

We went to Winco and Costco yesterday to stock up for the week and to buy a few special things for Thanksgiving.

We got to Costco at 9:59 a.m. The parking lot was nearly full even though the store didn’t open until 10:00 a.m. It is good that so many of us are stimulating the American economy… 🙂

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After our groceries run, Rich took Sophie for a hike and I went for a jog. I had the best time of all three of us…

Sophie stopped walking shortly into their hike. She kept licking her lips, but Rich couldn’t see anything. It wasn’t until I got home later that we found the problem: a cacti needle stuck into her tongue. Ouch!

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While Rich and Sophie were having troubles, I was enjoying a nice jog. I ran across the highway and jogged through the subdivision. There were enough trees to create a hint of shade on the roads.

The houses all look virtually the same: same stucco color, same tile roof, same landscape touch… So the only way to tell them apart is either the yard art or the contents of their garage.

20140421192029347280000000-oTowards the end of my run, I was rewarded with a roadrunner sighting!

No, not this kind of roadrunner.

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This kind!

Rich really wants to see a javelina while we are here. A roadrunner was first on my wildlife wish list. Color me bird happy!

Oh Mohs

Gold Canyon, Arizona

I spent yesterday morning at a doctor’s office getting a small basal cell carcinoma removed from the side of my forehead.

It was a minor procedure for the most common kind of skin cancer. The procedure, called MOHS (named after the doctor who invented it), is a micrographic surgery that most effectively removes the cancer with the least amount of invasion.

The doctor removes a section of skin and subcutaneous tissue which is then immediately tested to make sure that no cancer is at the boundaries of the removed section. If cancer is at the edge, a subsequent procedure is done and tested. This is repeated until no cancer is at the edge. The patient waits in a room until the pathology report comes back perfect.

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I have no idea what my results look like because I’m all bandaged up, but I’m guessing it’s similar to this photo except my hole is further up my forehead.

recon-5The cool thing is that I might get a black eye! This depends on if the blood pools under my eye. If it does, I’ll post an update. 🙂

Here’s my face the morning after.

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The bad thing is that I’m not supposed to exercise for a week. A WEEK!

I might have to locate an infrared sauna and sit in it so that I can sweat. There’s something so cleansing about a great sweat session…

They’re What?

Boise, Idaho

While I’m up in Boise, Rich is still down in Phoenix getting to know the neighbors better.

Our south side neighbors, Mike and Julie,  were away visiting a new grandbaby. Now they are back and have been very helpful.

The RV resort provides trash pickup twice a week which is great, but we don’t have an outside trash can to store the daily bags. So Rich was  tying a large bag up on Homer’s ladder and then putting it out for pickup on the assigned days.

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But there were holes chewed into the bags, and we couldn’t figure out what caused them. All dogs are on a leash, and we never saw any cats roaming around.

One night Sophie got me up as she barked at something that was walking around outside. All I could hear was something clipping along the cement. I thought it was an animal’s toenails, but now I know it was hooves.

Rich mentioned to Mike that something tried to get into the garbage.

Mike calmly said, “That would be a javelina.”

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I have heard of javelinas, but I had no clue what they looked like or where they lived. Once again, Google to the rescue…

Here are a few javelina characteristics:

  • Peppered black, gray and brown hair with a faint white collar around the shoulders
  • 40-60 pounds and about 19 inches tall
  • Young born year-round, most often from November to March
  • Live an average of 7.5 years
  • Very poor eyesight, may appear to be charging when actually trying to escape
  • Keen sense of smell
  • Eat primarily plants, including cacti, succulent plants, bulbs, tubers, beans and seeds; sometimes eat insects, garbage and grubs

Guess I’ll be a bit more careful while walking Sophie around the park at night from now on…

Oh and thankfully Mike has lent us a garbage can for the rest of our stay so the javelinas won’t be feasting on our trash. 🙂

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A Stitch in Time

Boise, Idaho

Got lucky and stumbled along into another quilt show the other day. This one was in Boise, and it was fabulous!

Three of the quilts were judged good enough to apply to the national show in Houston, Texas. That’s an amazing feat!

I would have voted for this to be Best in Show. This quilt is three dimensional in that the sheep and many of the flowers pop out of the quilt’s base fabric.

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Here’s a closeup of the lower right panel showing the applique and embroidery done to create the flowers.

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Here’s a closeup of the middle panel. The sheep is about a half an inch thick, made with a heavy wool thread.

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Here is another one of the quilts that received special honors. It didn’t photograph particularly well, but it’s of twelve different panels of an tightly woven fabric that was then machine emroideried with gold silk thread. The mono-chromed golden colors make it even more effective.

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I thought this quilt should have been selected fort the national   show. It’s all hand appliqued trapunto which means that every single different color of fabric is hand-stitched to the base fabric with tiny stitches almost underneath the piece and then stuffed with a small bit of extra padding from the back.

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The quilt is of twelve different birds.  Here’s a closeup of the hummingbird that’s made up of over two dozen fabric pieces. Simply amazing.

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Even the machine quilting was uniquely done. If you look closely at the base fabric at the left of this picture, you can just see a hummingbird quilted in relief. 0928141327And now some random quilts and why I photographed them…

This quilt immediately made me think of Melissa because she loves bold colors and all things concentric….
0928141317Although I usually don’t like pastels, this quilt made me realize that they are, in fact, quite pretty. 
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I love the free-form feeling of this quilt.

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The quilter designed her own pattern, and I discovered a bit more about how she made it when I took a closeup. It is a series of rectangles sewed into panels.

0928141320This quilt was made by teenage girls who live in a group home. Once a month they meet with volunteers who teach them sewing and quilting skills with donated fabric. I loved the angularity of the quilt design and the way they quilted the top with decorative stitches.

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I’ve always loved landscaped quilts, and this one appealed to me because of the simplicity and the use of batik fabrics.
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And the best part of the show? I found some great new supplies to help me get started on my own quilts… 🙂

One Busy Bull

Cooke City, Montana

We drove into Yellowstone this afternoon and took a route new to us.

We drove from where we are staying near Cooke City, aka The Coolest Small City in America. (Not sure why it’s considered the coolest small city. Perhaps it’s the 7500 elevation that keeps it chilly all year. Maybe it’s because buffalo graze just off Main Street.)

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Staying near the northeast entrance of the park is perfect for wildlife lovers because it’s a hop, skip, and a jump to the Lamar Valley. More about the Lamar Valley tomorrow…

We continued on into the Mammoth area in the hopes of seeing some elk. We weren’t disappointed.

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There was a herd of about 25 cows and one lone (and very busy) bull.

0917141706Hundreds of homo sapiens, including us :-), stopped to gawk.

We were fascinated by the elks’ behavior. The cows kept trying to wander off, and the bull kept getting the wandering cows back to the safety of the herd.

Here he is squealing at two cows as he pushes them back to the herd area.

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Rich asked the park ranger (who was herding all of us homo sapiens 🙂 ) if there were any other bulls. He said that there had been but that the biggest bull chased all of the others off.

I didn’t realize that bulls had so many other duties in addition to what I assumed was their only duty.