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Southeast (Gulf Coast), Texas, United States

Monday, February 23, 2009

Sunday Morning at Lake Texana

The grandkids were really tired at the end of Saturday, and slept well in the Bus overnight.  We woke up to a cold morning (mid 30’s) on Sunday, but the kids were anxious to go outside and play.

They hit the playground again……..

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Matthew remembered throwing rocks in the lake on Saturday, so we collected another bag of rocks, and threw some more……………..

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Afterwards, they posed for a picture on an Oak tree limb with Grammy………

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On the way back to the Bus, we saw a bunch of buzzards resting on a dead tree…….

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To balance it out, we also spotted a red bird in a bush……….

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We packed up and left the park about noon.  Patsy and I will leave again on Thursday for a rally with the Lone Star Allegros at the Country Place Campground in Cut’n’Shoot, TX, where we will meet up with our traveling RV buddies, Manuel & Connie and Mark & Sue again.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

At Home – Spending Time with Grandkids

We arrived home from our Quartzsite trip on Sunday afternoon.  Since then, we have been busy catching up on mail, housework, and Bus cleaning.  We haven’t gotten very far on the latter….. we still have not washed it or the car!!! 

I have spent some time trying to figure out how to install the stained glass that we purchased in Quartzsite for putting in place of the venetian blinds over the kitchen sink.  So far, I have built the frame for the stained glass, and removed the blinds.  I am currently shopping for a 12v light to put in the window for night viewing.

Our daughter-in-law had her surgery on Wednesday, and did not get released from the hospital until Saturday.  We have been taking care of the grandkids since Tuesday night, and after being out of town for 6 weeks, Patsy is eating it up!!!

The kids know that we go on vacation every so often, and now they call a trip in the Bus, a vacation!!  They wanted to take a vacation, so we told them that if they behaved, we would take them for an overnight trip to Lake Texana park.  That is what we did on Saturday, and that is where I are posting this topic. 

Here are some pictures from our Saturday “vacation”.  The first one shows them on the new folding stools and plates that we bought them on our last trip.  Aubrey’s has a princess on it and Matthew’s has Spider Man on it.  They liked the stools and plates:

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Today, the park had a ranger that put on a program for the kids.  They made ‘tracks’ in paint, and got to see some caged snakes, turtles and small alligators.

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Aubrey had a lot of fun looking at sea animals in the display…………….

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Matthew had a lot of fun posing with a fake snake…..

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When the ranger saw him playing with the fake snake, she offered him a live one.  After a little coaxing, he got brave and handled it…………..

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Aubrey was a lot more reluctant to touch the live snake, but, after a while, she did………

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They also spent a lot of time at the playground……..

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They had a big day.  Tonight, we bathed and fed them, and they watched a DVD with the surround sound system……. and then fell off to sleep quickly!!!

More on Sunday!!!!

Visiting Cousins Carol and Ron!!

On the way back home, we had decided that we would visit Patsy’s cousin, Carol, and her husband Ron, if we had time.  We found that we did have time, so we called and had a plan to meet them at a Chili’s Restaurant in their hometown of Odessa, TX.  We felt lucky, all three of their sons were home this weekend.

We woke up Saturday morning in Anthony, TX, and had about a 360 mile drive to get to Odessa.  Since it was Ron’s week to work on the weekend, we made plans to meet them at about 5:00pm………… so we had plenty of time. 

We got to the Odessa Chili’s at about 3:30pm, so Patsy baked a ‘brownie’ cake and we bought some Blue Bell ice cream for dessert after dinner.  It was, however, Valentine’s Day and my birthday!!

Being Valentine’s Day and a Saturday night, the restaurant was very busy, and we had to wait about an hour to get a table for seven.  We did finally get a table, and all worked out well.  After dinner, we went to the Bus for visiting and dessert.  The following are are some pictures of our visit……..

The first is a “family” photo: L—>R;  Brent, Josh, Ron, Carol, and Shane. 

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Here are some of us waiting for a table…..

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We finally got our table…..

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Ron and Carol relaxing in the Bus……

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Ron enjoying his “first” plate of dessert…….

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and enjoying his second plate of dessert……

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The three sons…….. Shane, a spring candidate for a Business Degree, Brent, a spring candidate for a Music degree, and Josh, a musician with a successful band.  Click here to check out Josh’s band!!

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While we ate, we parked the Bus in a nearby Sam’s store, where another motorhome was parked for the night.  We considered spending the night, but since we finished up at about 9:00pm, Patsy and I decided to hit the road for a couple of hours.

On Sunday morning, we woke up at a rest area on I-10 with about 350 miles to get home.  After we got on the road, we got a phone call from our DIL, and found out that our granddaughter, Aubrey, age 3, was at a cheerleading competition in San Marcos, TX. 

We changed our route a little, and met our Son, DIL, and grandkids in Shertz, TX at a Rudy’s BBQ for lunch, and the kids rode home with us in the Bus.  That’s the great thing about the motorhome life…… flexible travel!!

Heading Back to Texas

When the rally was over on Friday morning, Patsy and I hooked up the car, and headed back to Texas.  Our DIL is scheduled for major surgery on Wednesday, and we had volunteered to keep our grandkids during the ordeal.

On the last night of the rally, we visited Nick and Terry in their Bus.  They started with a used bus and gutted it, and with Miss Terry doing most of the work, they converted it into their ‘home on wheels’.  You can read more about it here.  Here are an outside and inside picture of the bus.

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We spent most of the day driving, but we did stop in Tucson, AZ to visit a Camping World Store, where we purchased a folding aluminum table for the Bus, and to shop one last time at a Trader Joe’s to get some specialty food items. 

Here are some pictures of the scenery on the way out of Arizona and through New Mexico.

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We drove until late Friday night and made it to the Flying J at Anthony, TX (close to El Paso) by 7:00pm.  After filling with fuel, we spent the night at the Texas Welcome Center at the Texas border.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

2009 Western Gypsy Gathering


We arrived at the Pinal County Fairgrounds in Casa Grande, AZ, site of the Gypsy Gathering on Saturday….. two days early, because we volunteered to be on the parking crew. 

When we arrived, it was sunny, dry and about 80 degrees.   The “campground” is a large sand/gravel parking area where they lay out 15amp power lines and water hoses in a straight line, with the intent that RVs will park on both sides of the utilities. 

Saturday night, it rained about an inch, and the parking lot became a big muddy field with some dry islands.  This was where we were supposed to park ‘happy’ campers starting on Sunday morning.  To make matters worse, they had a ‘Gourd Festival’ at the fairgrounds on Friday through Sunday, and many of them were in the ‘campground’!  The fairgrounds had double booked both events on Sunday!!!

So, Mark, Manuel and I worked with about 4 other ‘parkers’ and ended up putting 95 rigs on the grounds on Sunday.  We parked anther 60 or so on Monday.  Here are some pictures………….

Of course, our rigs were the first that we parked!!

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Beginning at 2:30pm on Monday, we started attending seminars and entertainment.  Patsy, Connie and Sue were asked to volunteer to assist with setting up the seminar rooms each morning, and they did. 

Part of the entertainment was dancing lessons at night.  Here are some pictures of Manuel &Connie and Mark & Sue working at it……

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Another “entertaining” event was the pizza party and ‘Cactus Queen’ contest on Wednesday night.  We got free tickets for the pizza party for our “parking duties”, and enjoyed it. 

The Cactus Queen contest was six old guys that should have known better (no, Mark and I did not enter, but we did think that our buddy, Ralph, would have made a great contestant!!). 

Here are some pictures of the ‘Queens’ with the first one being Joel Bucham, an RV’er that we met in Puerto Penasco.  He and his wife/girlfriend stopped to visit one night at the invitation of Bob and Linda Klyne, and they had left their Beaver motorhome at Organ Pipe NP, and were going to ‘tent’ on the beach.  He eventually won the title!!!  He is shown being interviewed by Nick Russell, the rally coordinator.



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Here is Joel with his wife……

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And here is “Joelene” being hit on by Mark who wants to make him/her his wife!!!!….


Tonight is the final activities at the rally, and tomorrow morning Patsy and I will hit the road for home in Texas.  Mark & Sue and Manuel & Connie will spend more time in Arizona.