Mother’s Day

Everyone I know either is a mother or has a mother, without exception. Some mothers are pregnant or have very small children, others are empty nesters with lots of others in between. Birth or adoption, marriage or friendship allow us to lay claim to our mothers, but they are all appreciated. Today I was blessed with a dozen roses from granddaughter Bailey. They are beautiful and smell great.

While Mother’s Day has always been a special day to me, I know that many people struggle with it. LeRoy’s parents both died when he was in very young and Mother’s and Father’s Days have always been inconsequential to him. Others are reminded again of an unhappy childhood or have recently lost their mother. This is the 10th Mother’s Day since my mother passed away and I find that on this day especially, I remember her and smile. I think she would be happy with the way her girls turned out. Daddy always got her a corsage for Mother’s day. Breakfast in bed just wasn’t his thing, I guess, although I remember doing that for her a time or two.

It has been a rainy few weeks here in Kansas, enough to cause severe flooding in many areas, but the sun is shining today and the world is washed and sparkling. I mention to LeRoy every once in awhile that it amazes me how many colors of green there are in the spring.

This past week I met with a cataract surgeon to see if I need to have cataracts removed. The consensus is yes, so I have an appointment in August to see him again and then surgery in mid-September. Everyone tells me how much crisper and brighter things appear after cataracts are removed. I’m looking forward to that!

All our college kids are finished with papers and finals and Jadelyn will be through in less than two weeks. Next school year, we won’t have any grandkids in elementary school. Jadelyn’s last junior high band concert is over and she played her contest solo on her bassoon. She did a great job.

According to the weather forecasters, the rains are over for awhile and this weeks temps may be in the 80s, which we think is glorious. We’re looking forward to seeing friends and catching up a little this week. If you don’t see us this month, we will see you down the road!

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Family

A week ago, we took pictures of the Sedgwick family after church. I have to say, it’s been a long time since we had the WHOLE family together. We always seem to be missing someone. Rob and Shelly and Avery are in Georgia, Katrina is in Oklahoma and Marc, Jordan and Rae are in Ellsworth, KS, so we always have pieces of the family. Anyway, I love this picture!

Monday night’s middle school choir concert was about the shortest on record, 15 minutes start to finish, I think. They did a very good job, though, and you could see why the group got high marks at contest. Jadelyn is on the second row right in front of the second boy from the left.

Jadelyn also had a couple of milestones outside of school this week. She wants to be an orthodontist when she completes her schooling and she got to shadow a dentist for an afternoon this week. I think she really enjoyed doing that. The other thing that day was (drumroll, please): she passed her driver’s permit exam! In Kansas, 14-year-olds can get a learner’s permit and begin 50 hours of supervised driving. Their unrestricted license comes at age 16 or 17, I think. Congratulations, Jade!

Our daughter Heidi had a birthday this week and we got the family together for Braum’s ice cream to celebrate. We really enjoy family time while we’re here!

Yesterday was a jam packed day. In the morning, we went to Jadelyn’s final Bible quiz. In the Friends church, quiz is just for 7th and 8th graders, so this is the last one for all our grandkids. We have enjoyed watching them learn the scripture and compete. Jade’s team wasn’t in the finals, so as soon as they broke for lunch, LeRoy and I and Bailey left for Ellsworth to Rae’s birthday party.

Long time readers will remember that a year ago on April 25, our first great grandchild was born at 26 weeks. Rachel Leigh (we all call her Rae) weighed 1 lb. 5 oz. and is a true miracle and answer to many, many prayers. We hadn’t seen her since November and she has changed so much! Happy birthday, sweet girl! She enjoyed her presents but the rustly paper was the real draw.

Grandma Compton’s book about baby animals was her favorite, especially the fuzzy bunny. She knew exactly where to look for that soft fluff. I loved reading it to her!

We’re starting to get things arranged in our motor home so that they are more handy and efficient. We bought a set of shelves and hung them on the wall at the end of the loveseat. The cubes are handy for storing plastic containers and ziplock bags, even my knitting. Up top we have a narrow shelf for fleecy throws for cool evenings, with room below for my iPad and the coffee pot when it’s not in use.

This week we start a round of necessary medical appointments, beginning with the audiologist to see how I’m getting along with my hearing aids. Although I still wish I heard better sometimes, overall I’m very pleased. Our “wellness checks” are coming up when they find out if we can get ourselves to the bathroom without help and if we’re prone to falls. So far, so good! Except for passing out at the Mexican border, I haven’t had any traumatic incidents. LeRoy kept me from going down hard then. A bottle of water and some cool air and I was all good. I hope to keep it that way!

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Happy Easter from Kansas!

What a week this has been! We left the Landing in Yuma on Tuesday after shuttling everything we thought we might need in the next 7 months from the park model to the Flair, finding a place it would fit and putting it in. We’ve already discovered that there will be a considerable amount of rearranging in our future, but at least everything is here.

For all the years we’ve been traveling, the route home has been very similar. We took I-10 from Tucson to Deming, NM, where we cut off to go to T or C to see Raymond, then I-25 to where we turned to go toward Tucumcari and Highway 54. This year we didn’t need to go through T or C, so we pointed our nose toward Pie Town, because…PIE! Kathy Knapp’s Pie-O-Neer Pie Bar is only open Thursday through Saturday, so we wanted to be there on Thursday. The shop “doesn’t open until 11:30”, but when we arrived at 10:30, there were already people coming out with pies! Stan was letting people in, so we went in too! Kathy met us near the door with a big hug before she got back to work.

Pies were still coming out of the oven but the coffee was ready, so we browsed the gift shop.

Once the pies went onto the pie bar, we had to decide which one(s) we wanted for lunch. No judging, okay? Pie makes a pretty good lunch!

I chose the chocolate chess with red chilis and almonds, which was like a fudgy brownie in a pie pan, not spicy hot but flavorful. LeRoy had two, or maybe three. I lost count. We also shared bites with a lady we met at the RV park the night before, so we had lots of “tastes”. We left with two of their take and bake pies. One, called Starry Starry Night, we baked that evening and enjoyed with our friends Dave and Lois St. John in Belen. It’s name is easy to understand when you see it fresh from the oven with blueberry filling bubbling up through all those various sized stars.

The other pie we brought home will be shared with daughter Heidi’s family this evening. They’ve heard about Pie-O-Neer pies for years but never got a taste. Tonight they will get to eat the New Mexico pie, an extraordinary apple pie with toasted pine nuts and green chilis. Awesome!

Yesterday we got back to the Landing in Sedgwick and backed the Flair in, with plenty of room to spare! Breakfast at the church this morning followed by a wonderful worship service celebrating Christ, who is the Resurrection and the life have made a blessed Easter. We even had an old-school choir!

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Did we ask for warm?

Well, yeah, we did and this coming week the forecast is for us to get all of that warm we want. Tomorrow is predicted to be about 99 and if that happens, can 100 be far behind? I will have to say, though, that the low 90s today didn’t feel bad at all outside in the breeze.

Since we are leaving a dwelling behind this year when we head back to Kansas, LeRoy looked up on Google “snowbird guide to summer-izing your home in Arizona”. He had multiple sites from which to choose. Our RV friends in the Great Plains who don’t live in their rigs usually have to winterize them to protect pipes from freezing. This is a whole different ballgame, but one similarity is to leave your cabinet doors open. We won’t have utilities on during summer, so we definitely won’t leave candles in the office drawer!

One thing we aren’t too worried about surviving the Yuma heat is the cactus garden. Last year, we came home several times to find a piece of cactus lying on our patio table. Our neighbor across the street brought them and LeRoy planted them in one of the raised beds next to the fence. This winter has really agreed with them. They are all growing very well.

These will probably be our welcome committee when we come back in the fall. We’ll let Yuma weather decide when they need watered!

We’re slowly getting things in order for leaving. We have been solving various puzzles like how do I take my earrings? What can we find to fit the odd sized spaces in the bathroom medicine closets? Where will the scales fit? Where can I put my computer? Little by little we’re paring down the pantry food items and emptying the freezer. Our RV refrigerator will be a much smaller unit than the one in the park model, even smaller than the one in Liberty. Fortunately, no matter what we decide we need after we leave here, there are stores just about everywhere these days!

Currently the plan is to leave April 16 but since we have several stops we’d like to make along the way, there’s no destination date just yet. We’ll get there when we get there. Until then, see you down the road!

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From our house

After I wrote last week, we finally received our certificate of occupancy from the county! I don’t know that we’ll frame it, but it is nice to have it. Probably not gonna be in a conspicuous place as it says, but we will be able to show it should push come to shove.

More work went on inside the motor home last week, mostly decorative. Sometime back, LeRoy took down the accordion-style bedroom and bathroom doors and replaced them with curtains. The others were wide enough that his shoulders hit both sides, not conducive to speedy movement from one room to another, especially in the dark! Because the curtains provide privacy, we added a clear shower curtain to make the bathroom not seem so cramped. There’s only so much you can do, though! We’re stocking up on little trays that will fit in the bathroom storage to hold all the necessary stuff and still be able to pull them out. We’re gearing up for a few months in about half the space we had in Liberty, so everything has to be convenient.

Back home, we had word last week that Benjamin’s enlistment into the Air National Guard is now scheduled for tomorrow! Wish we could be there to see it!

Yesterday was the big moving day for granddaughter Jordan, her husband Marc and of course, Rae.

Marc is the new lead pastor at a church in Ellsworth, KS. Speaking from VAST experience, moving is decidedly not fun, but I think having family and friends provide strong arms and good company really helps. Their new house is unusual, to say the least. I can hardly wait to see it! The outside is very 1886, but the inside is decidedly 2019.

I imagine Heidi and Tim “may” have shed a few tears when they headed for home in Sedgwick last night. I remember when they moved from Wichita for their first pastorate and I know I cried a little? Comptons are only a couple of hours up the road, though, so it will soon become a familiar drive.

We’re in the home stretch here in Yuma. Our current plan, subject to change, is to be packed and ready to leave on April 17. If we miss you this season, we’ll see you all down the road!

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Progress!

REAL progress! When our new dwelling was being set in place in December, LeRoy and I jokingly said we wondered if it would be finished by the time we were ready to leave for the season in April. By last week, March hit it’s mid-point and it was no longer a joke! We really wondered! BUT this week we began “officially” living in our park model here in Yuma. The inspector came on Thursday and signed off on our permits, both the setting of the house and erecting the awning. Then the contractor came by on Friday and we paid his bill, making it official. We love our house! Wish you all could come see it.

When we first bought this property, there were two decks, one for each RV hookup. LeRoy has moved and/or taken them down more times than he’d like! The big one had to come down after heĀ  moved it to the wall because RVs parked next to it couldn’t open their door. Not a good situation! The one next to where Liberty was parked had to be moved for all the projects that went on moving utilities. When we though the park model would go on that side, he cut it in two pieces and stacked it at the back of the lot where it stayed until a short time ago. Now it is back together where we can see it from our living room. It needs sealing again but there are other priorities.

Inside the house, we haven’t had a headboard for our bed, just the bedframe. When we drink coffee in bed in the mornings, each time one of us gets up or scoots down, the bed slides away from the wall. We had talked about a headboard and I suggested one like LeRoy had made for our bed in Wichita, made from a length of picket fence. That one was whitewashed, I think. Since our walls are white here, that wouldn’t have worked very well. As a result of watching way too much HGTV, we had learned about burning wood to bring out the grain so LeRoy did that and then put on a couple of coats of polyurethane. You can see the result here.

 

Since the house is very much to our liking now, it was time to think about getting ready for spring travel. The Flair is beginning to look more liveable. LeRoy took out the dinette so typical of RVs and replaced it with a love seat with storage beneath it, giving us an extra foot or so of usable space. (Pictures of that later.) It also made the ugly carpet even more apparent. As a result of his success with the headboard, we decided to try that on the floor of the motor home and it’s looking good. No polyurethane yet but it looks good. The remainder of the carpet may come out at a later date.

In the meantime, I’ve been working on armrest covers for the passenger and driver seats. The other ones, in addition to being a 1996 mauve/green combination, were worn out. I bought a tan microsuede bedskirt at a garage sale several weeks ago and this weekend I took it apart to use the fabric. First order of business was pattern making.

then making a fabric template to pin fit and make changes, but the finished projects looked pretty good.

After LeRoy wrestled them into place, they look like they belong.

Lest anyone think all we’ve been doing is working, last weekend was a road trip for us. Back in 1966 when LeRoy was in the Army, we lived in Killeen, TX and attended the Nazarene Church there. We met Eldon and Sharon Orrell there and quickly became fast friends. Sharon had a “real” job as a school teacher, but we were all broke together. We got paid once a month and often by the end of the month, the cupboards were pretty bare. We could pool what we had and have a good meal together, then play Rook. (Heaven forbid that we play with actual playing cards! Lightening would have struck us!) Anyway, Eldon and Sharon live in Kingman, AZ now, just a few hours away and we went to see them. When we walked in on Saturday afternoon, LeRoy and Eldon went off to Eldon’s man space and Sharon and I sat in the living room and talked…and talked…and talked. We were still catching up when it was time to leave on Monday morning!

On down the road, we stopped in Quartzsite for lunch with fellow volunteers from Golden Bell. Two couples from Kansas, one from California and us, the vagabonds. We enjoyed hugs and visiting for a couple of hours before heading for home. We sure missed Max Reser and other volunteers, but we talked about all of them! Hope their ears were burning.

 

It won’t be long until we are headed back toward Kansas and will get to see family there, but I’m especially looking forward to seeing this sweet little one. Rae will be 11 months old tomorrow. What a miracle baby she is! She, along with her parents, will be living in Ellsworth, KS by the time we get back there. I think she’s thinking “Are you sure I’m supposed to be sitting here?”

See you down the road!

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Company

What an enjoyable week we’ve had! Not only has the weather been back into the temperatures we expect in an Arizona winter,we’ve also had company. I remember when a friend of ours moved from Wichita to Sedgwick, the distance of about 20 miles, she told me that it seemed to be farther from Wichita to Sedgwick than the other way. Her friends were reluctant to drive “that far” for a visit but thought nothing of asking her to come to their house. Moving to Yuma for the winter is a lot farther from friends than that 20 mile drive, but while we would drive to Tucson or another distant town to see friends, few are so inclined to come see us here. This week was different.
Our friends Phil and Pat Cox from Arkansas are in Green Valley visiting her daughter and they called this week to see if they could drive over to visit us! Our answer was YES, of course! Now that we have both a park model and an RV, we even have overnight guest space. We showed them Yuma, including our favorite fish taco stand, a driving tour past miles of vegetable fields (did we ever tell you that Yuma is the winter lettuce capital of the world?) and took them to Martha’s Gardens, a date farm and store where we made sure they had a date shake. Our neighbors were gathering for breakfast at AmVets the next morning, so we took Coxes with us and joined them. Good food, good prices and good company.
neighbors
After Phil and Pat left for home, we had another welcome visitor. We first met Lindsay Tempro when she was a student nurse working as summer staff at Golden Bell camp in the summer of 2014. She and her fellow “camp nurse” set up a table right outside the gift shop to provide campers their morning or noon or evening medications and when they were between patients, one or both would come into the gift shop just to talk when I was working there. Occasionally they both came over to the bus and visited us, so we got pretty well acquainted. In January, Lindsay sent me a message and said that she had a contract as a traveling nurse in Phoenix for a few months and Malia was helping her drive out. We weren’t able to get together while Malia was here, but Lindsay drove down Thursday to see us. It was like having one of our grandkids drop in for a visit! We went to Da Boyz pizza/Italian restaurant in downtown Yuma, in an old Kress store building.
da boys selfie
We also took her across the state line into California to show her the enormous Imperial sand dunes. And took time for another selfie back home!
lindsay
We sent her on her way Friday afternoon with the leftover pizza from the night before and instructions to stop at Dateland (milemarker 67) for a date shake. Are you sensing a pattern here? We love our date shakes and I think we’ve become pushers!
We closed the week out by picking up a few tubs of clothing from Jessie’s Closet to be washed and resorted. More volunteer hours for Jonah’s Eagle Scout project!

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