Tuesday, December 04, 2012

On December 4, 1942 at 12:35 am

Carol Wagner was born in the city of  Charleston, Kanawha County, West Virginia. Carol was the first of nine children that would be born to Gilbert Clark Wagner and Antionette Katherine Vaughn.

About 1945
About 1968 with Jennifer

Today Carol turned 70 years old. After three children, a 25 year career teaching at Indian River Community College, a heart attack,a hemorrhagic stroke, a broken hip and being around me  for over 46 years she's still the same cheerful, wonderful, positive person I married. I've never met anyone quite like Carol. In all the universe I truly believe there is no  happier person. I just can't imagine my world without her.

Still smiling after all these years

We've been talking recently, about being 70 and what it means. Age is clearly relative. We can remember at one time thinking that 50 was over the hill.  When my 90+ year old mother was living in the ACLF, she would comment that there were some *elderly* people living there as well. I guess when you're 90,  90 isn't *elderly*. What is *elderly*?  Perhaps it's when you just give up living.  We know we're not kids anymore, but we don't feel like old people either however it is that old people should feel.  Our plan is to continue our travels until we are simply no longer able to do so and then just take things from there. Our working and savings years are behind us. Going forward we do as we please, go where we want and buy what suits us. When you're 70 you're allowed to do such things.

This morning I made Carol pumpkin pancakes for breakfast; one of her favorites. For dinner we got a take-out rotisserie chicken from the Peruvian restaurant. The chicken is very good, but  mostly we went there because they have another of the Birthday Girls favorites; fried bananas. 

The girls sent a bouquet of roses and called to say hello. Jennifer sent a Care Package of great Christmas type cookies.

So happy birthday my dear.

Love, Ed

Monday, December 03, 2012

Our Colorado Casita

We're moving.

When we were on our most recent, and longest, trip we began discussing moving west.  Most of our friends live out west and the states we enjoy visiting the most tend to be there as well. My mother was our last tie to Fort Pierce; she passed away in February of this year.  We're going to miss this house and all the memories.  Suzanne, Izzy and Oliver were here a few weeks ago for one last visit to "home". Jennifer and Alex and their families are coming down for the week after Christmas for one last look. We're going to miss the beautiful back yard we created over the years. In 1999 Carol and I hand dug the Anniversary Pond as our anniversary gift to each other. Over the years we would bring home rocks and pieces of driftwood  from here and there and put them by the pond as memories of our travels. Now we look at the rocks and simply can't recall where they came from but we enjoy them nonetheless.

The Anniversary Pond

 The big oak tree out front we bought as a twig from an FFA sale shortly after we moved in.  For many years, each Christmas I would climb to the top of the tree and string dozens of lights. It became a neighborhood landmark. With time I became too old for such things.
The oak tree

 We're going to miss sitting out back in our shorts on New Years day.  We're going to miss our long time neighbor Martha Harris.  Her husband, and my friend, Byron passed away several years ago from complications related to Parkinson's disease.

We searched the MLS on-line listings for a month or so, but with Carol's special requirements, simply could not find a house that worked for us in a location we liked. Today we signed a contract to have a house built in Longmont, CO. Our casita is only a ten minute walk from where Suzanne and family live and very near two wonderful city parks.  The house should be completed in April.

Now all we need to do is dispose of 45+ years of "stuff", sell this house and take off.  We bought this house in  October, 1972 for $28,000.  Jennifer was five, Suzanne was not quite two and Alexandra wasn't yet born. I had just been transferred by Barber Lumber Company from West Palm Beach to become the manager of the Fort Pierce lumber yard. Carol was a stay-at-home mom. 

Come April, we'll start all over in our new and ,most likely, our last home. 

Saturday, December 01, 2012

A few of our favorites from over the years

 Elephant Butte State Park. New Mexico.
I was so focused on the 10' 4" clearance sign, I didn't notice the 3 tons weight limit until we had crossed the bridge. Should have sent the PA DOT a note that this bridge had been weight tested at 7 tons!!

We only had to drive about ten miles to get to our destination along the Snake River in Oregon.

This was our destination. The Snake River. A local Bubba stopped by to ask how we got the camper down there. I told him it was 4WD. He thought that was neat.

Some rest areas are rather basic.
As are some of our campsites.

Some pictures of the three of us.

 The Seven Mile Bridge near Marathon, FL
 All snuggled up.
 Gopher the Dog

 The petrified forest. Bought a new multi-colored hat.
Monument Valley

 We bought new wedding bands from a jeweler at an art show in Tubec, AZ.

 We've met some interesting people

The Silverado Ranch near Douglas, AZ

We met Paul and Terry in Oregon. Paul is 93 years old and still travels each year from OR to "Q"

Some odds and ends

Christmas with the kids. Longmont, CO.

No snow around here.

 Quartzsite "Q", AZ   The Lazy Daze group.

The day we picked up our new Lazy Daze.  April 25, 2008.

A music festival we bumped into in Ontario, Canada.  It was held at a public campground. We were the only Yanks there.

A beautiful lake in Oregon.

A walk on the beach in Oregon.

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Balloon Fiesta-Part 2

Monnday: Last nights wine and cheese social was a big hit. Lots of excellent, and varied,  cheese dishes.

This is a racing balloon. In the evening four launched. The goal is to travel as far as possible without landing. This race is a preliminary event with the winner going to an international race later this year.

The balloon launch was delayed until about 9am because of high winds. The typical start time is about 7am. The 9am launch worked much better with Carols schedule. Once again, we walked down to the museum area for a nice view.

 The 9am launch worked well for a lot of people.

The old style Lazy Daze and the new style.

Two more people pulled in today. Todd who just picked up his new-to-him '99 LD in California. He's on his way back to Minnesota.  And Ginny Free and her wonder dog Junah; a very friendly female doberman pincher. Ginny has had a run of bad luck with her Lazy Daze but you would never guess it by talking to her. She's just as smiley and cheerful as can be.

Tonight  was desert-for- dinner night. A huge selection of mostly homemade deserts was available.
We've both put on weight recently. As soon as we get home, the diet starts.

Our last day here.
 The view out the rear window of the camper.
 One last look at the balloons.

 Our Lazy Daze friend, Lisa, pulled in  today.  These days Lisa's traveling with three dogs; all strays shes picked up here and there.
Tonight is grill night. Throw whatever you care too on the grill.


  We headed out this morning about 7am. Tonight we're in the Fair Park campground in Childress, TX. ($15/night for water/elect. No dump station) We've been here before. It's right in the center of the city park. Very nice. 34.42997  -100.20207
We had dinner at the Jakson Steak and Bar-B-Que restaurant. The brisket was as good as it gets (served, of course, with plain white bread). They have some very good sides as well. The onion rings are breaded with cornmeal. We shared the squash chips, sweet potato fries and slaw.

During the drive, the primary topic was the possible move to Colorado. We've decided to go ahead so when we get home, I'll start working on all the little repair items needed to get the house ready to sell  and we'll start sorting through a lifetime of "stuff", deciding what to pitch, what to donate and what to take to CO.

Three more long driving days ahead of us.

Sunday, October 07, 2012

Balloon Fiesta

We arrived at the BF camping area on Monday, October 1st  after staying at two casinos for a night each. On Sunday, a bunch of us enjoyed the brunch at the Sandia Casino. It was very good.
I met an interesting guy who was camping at the Sandia Casino parking lot near us. He lives in  town but brings his camper to the casino for the BF because he just enjoys the company in the parking lot. He showed me this poster.

 It's so nice meeting up with our friends. Carol and I both have a chance to socialize with someone besides each other. I think Carol in particular, enjoys the company of the other women. It must get really old hanging around with just me and the dog. 

The camping area on Monday the 1st.

 On Tuesday, we walked with John and Linda to the Murphy Mule Barn restaurant for breakfast. It's 1.2 miles each way on a nice paved walkway. Carols scooter did just fine. Carol had granola pancakes and I had huevos rancheros; one of my Mexican favorites.

More food. On Tuesday we had Linda's pulled pork supper and on Thursday Roger cooked the tri-tip roast Annie and Rick provided. We made brownies and bar-b-qued sweet potatoes for the tri-tip night. Tomorrow is the brunch.  When we get home in a few weeks, it's back to our typical healthy diet. Until then, we're eating our way through Albuquerque.
This morning we went into town, dumped the tanks at the free Giant station, did grocery shopping, picked up some of the worlds best brisket, pulled pork and turkey, at Rudy's then topped off with water. Starting tomorrow, the roads, restaurants, stores, etc.,  all around here will be jam packed.
Right now there are 11 Lazy Days here. Ten more are due in tomorrow. It's interesting seeing the new LD's. There are two 2012 models here. In a few more days, there will be 30 LD's here.
Roger, Mister "Q". is setting up a new Yahoo page for the annual Lazy Daze gathering at Quartzsite ("Q") in January.
The new Lazy Daze "Q" site

On Friday the line of campers pulling into the camping area stretched from the road to the registration area.

The camping area on Friday
Dweezil Zappa, Rick and Annies dog, let Gopher try on his shades.

 The Rudy's truck came through on Friday passing out free breakfast tacos. This is Rick and Annie with their hands full.


The balloon activities were cancelled on Saturday because of inclement weather. The night time fireworks did go on.
Ann and Jerry Marcus are here having just returned from their summer long adventure to Alaska. They drove their LD to the Arctic Circle then took the bus to Prudoe Bay.  Ann is the most amazing baker. One night she made the lemon cake she is famous for then outdid herself with a pineapple cake.

On Sunday the balloons took off. The three of us walked down past the Balloon Museum and had a prime viewing spot.

Balloons being inflated.

They go up, then they come down.

Sometimes right in the middle of a camping area.
 Sometimes on the sidewalk.

More pictures to follow on another day.
Tonight is the wine and cheese social. We don't drink the stuff but bought a bottle of wine at Trader Joe's the other day.