Monday, June 28, 2010

Saturday June 26, 2010-Rayford Crossing RV Resort

I slept a little later this morning because I was up so late last night sitting out with our friends, sleeping until about 5AM. I went down and drank coffee with the guys and came back home and took Stella to work. So routine...

I came back here and washed the truck. It has rained a couple of times recently, just showers, but enough to leave the truck with a layer of dirt and mud all along the sides. It doesn't take long to wash it but it's certainly hot work. It dries almost as soon as I stopped squirting water on it, but at least its clean.

I picked Stella up from work and we stopped at Marco's and had supper. This is a pretty good restaurant and although its all mexican food, all the restaurants are different. We started eating here when we had coupons and have just kept eating here. I guess the coupons really do work.

We came back home and our friends Larry and Pat came over and sat outside our house, chatting tonight. We didn't stay out too late tonight because of the flies and skeeters. It has been pleasant to sit outside because we get the early shade, being on the west side of the park and against the tree line. We like these sites and will miss them when we return in October. I'm still not sure of which site we'll be in, but it will be a good one. Melissa is working on it for me.

So long.

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Friday June 25, 2010-Rayford Crossing RV Resort

Another dull day here. I got up and had coffee as usual, and took Stella to work. We have been talking about having her drive three or four days a week, but she doesn't like driving in traffic, so we'll see how that works out.

I came back home and picked up around the trailer and swept it out. I figure that since Stella is working, this is the least that I can do. Being a house-husband isn't really all that bad. I chatted some with John today while outside. Only a few new trailers came in for the weekend, so the park is very quiet.

I went to pick up Stella from work and we decided to go out to eat pizza. Stella found a coupon in Donna's coupon book for Incredible Pizza in Conroe. We went up and it looks very similar to a Chucky Cheese, and aimed at kids, but it was surprisingly good. There was a good selection of pizzas and they were very tasty. We came back home and sat outside with our neighbors Larry and Pat until after 10 o'clock, way after my normal bedtime.

So long.

Thursday June 24, 2010-Rayford Crossing RV Resort

Today was another slow day for us. I got up and went to have coffee with the guys at the rally hall and we have a couple of new fellows. Perhaps the word is getting around. One of them, Larry, is my neighbor across the street in site 106. He is still working but will retire soon.

I took Stella to work and came back and hung out, staying inside as much as possible to stay cool. It is HOTTT down here. I get emails from Donna telling me how cool it is where they are. I'm envious and can only make plans for other times when we'll be the one in nice weather when they're not...

Nothing very interesting happened today and I went and got Stella after work and we came back home. Stella fixed us some delicious Spanish rice at home and we stayed in all evening.

See, I told you it was a slow day...

So long.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Wednesday June 23, 2010-Rayford Crossing RV Resort

Today was a very slow day around here at the Rayford Ranch...I took Stella to work and rode home through Tomball and got fuel at the Raceway station where fuel is the cheapest ($2.69). I took 21.9 gallons to go 339.4 miles for a 15.49 MPG average. All of this stop and go driving is killing my mileage. I am seriously considering letting Stella drive to work and keep the truck all day long. It will cut our miles by 1/2 daily and she has promised to drive it carefully and not run any red lights, causing an accident.

I did hear from our old friend Mike and Patrice yesterday that they have bought a used Bighorn 3500 from Lone Star RV (south). You may not remember them because they used to camp out with us a lot but then got involved in motorcycles and sold their truck and trailer. It will be like old times for them to have a trailer again. They are planning to come here for the 4th of July weekend.

Mike worked for the LaMarque Police Dept. which is where I began my law enforcement career. He quit about the time I came on board, but we later worked together for the Dickinson Police Dept. He left there after about ten years and went to work for the City of Beaumont and then moved to the City of Missouri City and I again worked for him there doing Code Enforcement.

As I said, it was a slow day around here, but another one is in the books.

So long.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Tuesday June 22, 2010-Rayford Crossing RV Resort

We woke this morning and had breakfast in the trailer, before Stella had to go to work. It worked out pretty well because after the fridge went out, Stella had fried up all the bacon, sausage and ground meats to prevent them from ruining and a package of frozen Pillsbury biscuits that we have been buying for our breakfast. Since the food had already been cooked, all she had to do was put it together, so we had a good breakfast that was quick to prepare.

I took her to the park and did the drive-through with her the first thing in the morning. There were no new trailers in, and two had left as planned, so everything was in order this morning. I dropped her off and came back home. I worked some on the October Heartland rally plans and Stella called about 1 o'clock to ask if I would move a man's trailer for him. I found out a little bit about it and agreed to move it for him. I met him at the park at 3, and he took me over to the other side of Tomball where the trailer was. It was near the Countryside RV Park that Stella and I had stayed in after our evacuation for Rita. The trailer was an older Hitchhiker fifth wheel that was in pretty poor condition. The battery was dead and we had to crank up the front landing jacks by hand, which worked up a good sweat for both of us. We checked it over before I hooked up to it, checking the tires and lights and other safety items. The lights didn't come on at first but soon one of the back tail lights came on and after pulling out, he told me that the brake lights worked too. I made my way carefully through Tomball, avoiding any traffic problems. The first issue I had was at the corner of FM 2920 and FM 2978 where we had to turn left onto 2978. An 18 wheeler truck and trailer had slipped off into the deep ditch. There was also construction at the corner, which made for a tight turn. I had to swing out very wide to make the turn and still barely missed the truck's mirror. We made it through, but it was exciting... The only other issue I had was at one of the cross-streets. The cross street was much higher than the road that we were on, and it was pretty bumpy, going over it. I was worried about the tires going over the bumpy roads, but we made it just fine. The house where he wanted the trailer taken was nice and easy to get into and park the trailer where he wanted it, and I got it placed with no problem. He paid me a little bit to move it, and I went back over to Timber Ridge and picked Stella up. We came home and had supper here. Today is Tuesday, so I had to watch my show, NCIS. Gotta get that Gibbs and Dinozo fix for the week.

So long.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Monday June 21, 2010-Rayford Crossing RV Resort

We are going south this morning. Stella is meeting with one of her clients in Texas City and I had called my friend Kristene to set up a lunch meeting with her and any of my other friends that could come by, so we were pretty-well set for today.

We left here about 10:30 for Alvin and lunch but the traffic was heavier than I had anticipated and it took us until a few minutes after 12 before we got to Kelly's Restaurant. Luckily for me, Kristene had gotten held up too and she was late, but she arrived a couple of minutes after we did. She said that the others that she had invited were busy today but would come by the next time we are in town. We had a nice visit with her and caught up on our friends that weren't there.

Stella had exchanged text messages with her client all morning and had learned that today was not convenient for a meeting. We will have to come back next Monday or another time to meet with her. We went to our storage building and got the small refrigerator out as well as some small items that I found and decided I needed. We are tired of our fridge problems and will take this small apartment-size refer and will use it outside for cold drinks and water when ours get fixed.

From there, we went by Eric's office in Clear Lake where Stella picked up some paperwork that she needed. She also got in a nice visit with Frances, whom she worked with at Citizen's state Bank in Dickinson.

Traffic wasn't too bad on the way home and we made it back about 6:30. We had supper and relaxed after a long day of running errands.

So long.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Sunday June 20, 2010-Rayford Crossing RV Resort

Wow, I just noticed that yesterday's post is #500! It seems like only yesterday that I began recording our adventures. We have made so many new friends on this blog. I have enjoyed writing it, although I have gotten behind several times and had to rush to catch up, but I try very hard.

Today is Father's Day, so I hope that all the other fathers have a happy day; I know I did! The only bad spot in my day was that the fridge finally gave it up and stopped working. We have already decided that we are going down to Texas City tomorrow and will go by our storage to get the small refrigerator and bring it back. Stella had to go down to the office to turn in some reports from Timber Ridge and while she was there, she spoke with Gwen about our fridge problem. Gwen allowed us to bring our cold food down to the Rayford room to put it in the fridge there. Gwen and Billy are so nice! How many other parks would let a guest do this?

When we took our things to the park refrigerator, we found that Gwen and her family were having a birthday party for Billy. Actually it was a combination birthday and Father's day party, and they invited us to stop in and have a drink with them. It was nice spending time with them and we appreciate being invited. Another big plus of staying here. It's like staying with close friends or relatives.

I later took the clothes down to the laundry for Stella to wash. It gave me some good nap time and our clothes got clean to boot. Whats not to like about this?

So long

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Saturday June 19, 2010-Rayford Crossing RV Resort

Here we are, another wonderful day in the certifiably nicest medium-size RV park in the state. We have stayed in more than 30 different parks since we retired and began living in our trailer and there is nowhere else that we'd rather stay. With the amenities and surroundings here, this place is impossible to beat. Apparently TACO, the Texas Association of Campground Owners, felt the same way because they recently bestowed their award for Best Medium Size RV park on Rayford Crossing.

Last night, Eddie and Kelly and their son Cody came in for the weekend. Stella had talked to Dee last night and they are supposed to come to the park this afternoon for a visit. Her mother
is still in the hospital here and she is stressed out and needs some time with friends. I took Stella to work and stopped off at the Valero to fill up with fuel. Since I have not been keeping track of my fuel usage, I didn't record how much it took to fill up, but I did get another good price of $2.71 per gallon.

I came back home and had a short visit with Eddie and Kelly at the office, and told them that we would see them later in the afternoon. I went back home and hung out until time to get Stella. She had a visitor, Jackie, one of the Boomers that we haven't seen in awhile. We had a nice visit with her and came on back home. When we got here, Ricky and Dee were next door at Eddie and Kelly's trailer.

We went over and after chatting with them for about 30 minutes, we decided to go eat at Sweet Bella's restaurant. It was a fine meal and we were all very full when we left. We came back home and sat outside at Eddie and Kelly's place until about 9:30. It was a nice way to end the night.

So long.

Friday June 18, 2010-Rayford Crossing RV Resort

Here are the pictures of the new office at Timber Ridge. The office is very nice but still needs a little tweaking before it's perfect but Billy is working on it every day.
Here is Stella, ready for another hard day at work at her new desk. I found out later that this desk is HEAVY!! Billy and I lifted one corner of it to slip in a small plastic floor mat for the chair to glide on.

Gwen also brought some of the items for sale over from Rayford. With the addition of the bathrooms and showers, this makes this park just about complete. I don't expect them to do too much more right away and the property is for sale.
Today was a pretty slow day for us. I took Stella to work after I had coffee with the guys. I came back home and cleaned up around the trailer a little bit and set out our new patio lights to charge them up. They look very nice and these should make a nice addition to our site. They really put out an amazing amount of light.

When I went to pick up Stella, I put some tire shine on my truck tires. Jake had washed it for me because he had gotten greasy fingerprints on the fenders, and it looked so nice that I decided to shine up the wheels and tires. Of course, when I got to Timber Ridge, a heavy shower came over and dirtied up the truck and washed off the tire shine. I should have known better than to have done something like that.
So long.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Thursday June 17, 2010-Rayford Crossing RV Resort

Here is Ian with his Dad and Mom in front of their motel in Galveston. I thought it was very nice of him to have brought them with him to visit.
Ian and his Pop. I just don't get to see enough of him.

Ian and his MeMaw.

The day's activities...

I woke this morning and went down to the rally hall to make coffee for the guys and me. This is my routine on the mornings that we get together. I go down about 6 and start the coffee and come back home to get showered and cleaned up. Then we all meet around 7 to solve the world's problems.
I came back home and ate breakfast and took Stella to work. When we got there the air conditioner had stopped working or had frozen up over night. Either way, it was warm in the office. There was nothing for me to do today, so I left. I went home via Tomball to buy fuel and sure enough, the mini gas-price war was still going on and now the Valero has diesel for $2.69 a gallon. I filled up the big tank and most of the smaller one when Stella called me to come pick her back up. She had called Gwen and was told to take the day off. I've gotta admit, it would have been miserable in that office with no a/c. I went back and got her but along the way, I stopped off at an upholstery shop to get a quote on fixing a small tear in my seat. The guy told me that most of my seat cover is actually vinyl that looks like leather, and that he can replace the damaged portions for about $275.00. Wow, I was expecting to pay much more than that! We'll have schedule something with him.
We came on back home and relaxed for the rest of the morning. It actually worked out better for us for Stella to have been sent home because Ian brought his Mom and Dad down for a couple of days to visit Galveston, so this gave us a better opportunity to go down to see him.
We took a leisurely drive down to the island with little traffic. It was a nice day to be on the highway in Houston with no traffic problems or accidents. When we got to the hotel where they were staying, we tried to call Jennifer on her cell but she didn't answer. I tried a couple more times and couldn't get her, so I went to the hotel phone and finally got in touch with her. She said they have no cell phone service in the hotel, which sucks! We finally got together so all is well. Ian was taking a nap when we got there, but soon woke and started playing. We were all hungry, so we walked across the parking lot to Tortuga's Cantina where we ate. The food was okay, but wasn't real tasty. We had a very nice visit with them and of course, Ian and I played while we ate.
We returned to the hotel and took a few photos. After hugs and handshakes and of course, a lot of loves from Ian, we left to come back home. It was another good trip, without any traffic slow-downs. It ended up as a very nice day.
So long.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Wednesday June 16, 2010-Rayford Crossing RV Resort

Today was another laid-back but very hot day here in the park. We have been getting afternoon rains and showers for the past few days but it's just enough to make it steamy after the rain has fallen.

Today I took Stella to work and when we got there, I robbed the money out of the laundry and coke machine there. There were lots and lots of quarters, I expect a couple of hundred dollars worth, since the park was closed last week and no one took the change out. I swept out the laundry to help Stella out after we did the drive-through to see any changes in the park residents. There were no changes in the park, so I was soon finished with my chores there and returned home.

Jake had called last night and told me the truck was ready, so I went over to my friend John's house to see if he would ride over to pick up the truck with me but wasn't home. He had taken his neighbor to Camperland to pick up his motorhome that had some work done there, so I told Jan, John's wife, what I needed from him and she said she would tell him when he got home. John came over a little after 3 and we went to get the truck. Jake was ready for me when we got there, so after I paid him, John followed me to drop the car off at Enterprise. I took John home and dropped him off and went to pick up Stella from work. I had called her and told her that I might be late picking her up, but I made it on time after all. She seems to like her new office but there are still a few things that need to be done before it is perfect.

We stopped off at HEB and bought a few items and came home and ate bacon and tomato sandwiches for supper. We haven't completely filled the refrigerator because the new circuit board hasn't come in and we don't fully trust the fridge. I stay in touch with Johnny and he tells me it should be in any day. I hope so, we get tired of going to the grocery store every couple of days but at least we have fresh milk and bread.

So long.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Tuesday June 15, 2010-Rayford Crossing RV Resort

I want to talk a little more on the floods in Arkansas that killed several campers. First of all, I think it is very important for all of us to have some sort of weather alert radio available, especially those of us that full-time and travel extensively. Some that I have seen require a state and county to be entered and some only a zip code. Either way, notification will be given for the area where you are for threatening weather. We use a Midland radio and it seems to work well, but the alert notice is very hard to understand.

Another big point is the areas where we go. Many times we are "out in the boonies" with bad or non-existent cell phone service or internet reception. I don't know of an internet-based alert system yet, but I'll bet there is either one available or one is being developed. Then one could use a park furnished wifi to connect to the internet and have a weather alert also. Otherwise, I guess we'll have to depend on the park to alert their guests of bad weather approaching.

Today was a pretty slow day here on the Rayford Crossing hacienda. I took Stella to work today in her new office. Gwen and Billy were there already there and working when we arrived and she started right in to work. I helped Billy a little bit, moving things from storage back into the office before I left. When I went back to pick her up, they had made amazing progress. They bought a new desk and it fit nicely in the office. I'll take some pictures when everything gets arranged and put in place. It looks really nice.

We stopped off at the 88 Buffet oriental restaurant for supper. It was very good, much better than most of the other buffets in the area. We will be back there. We came back home in time to see NCIS, my favorite show on television.

So long.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Monday June 14, 2010-Rayford Crossing RV Resort

Let me begin today's entry by saying how sorry we are to hear the news of the campers that were killed in the RV park in Arkansas. This is a terrible tragedy. May God bless all of them and their families.

We had a lot to do today on our last day off. We decided to rent a car, so we would have transportation while the truck was in the shop and so Stella could go to work. Then we had to take the truck back to Jake to have the rest of the work done but first we had to go pick up Stella's computer. She had also decided to buy some more solar lights to put in our site at the Home Depot. We went to the Home Depot store near the Best Buy store where the computer was, but they were out of the light sets that she wanted We stopped off at the Enterprise Car Rentals on I-45 where we got a very small Hyundai for a couple of days. This thing is tiny but we had transportation with a good air conditioner, so all is good. Stella followed me to Jake's shop and we dropped the truck off. We stopped at the Home Depot on Research Forest on our way home and luckily for me, they had the light set that she wanted. I say luckily for me because I had discouraged her from buying them last week when we were there. We had bought two of the single lights to see how they would work and how much light they put out. If we had not been able to find these lights I would never have heard the end of it.

By the time we got home it was the middle of the afternoon, so we just hung out at home for the rest if the afternoon. At least when the truck comes back, everything will be fixed and we shouldn't have any more trouble for awhile, we hope.

So long.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Sunday June 13, 2010-Rayford Crossing RV Resort

I woke pretty early this morning and got the boys up earlier than they would have liked, but we learned that Cameron has his end of season party for his baseball team this afternoon at 2, so we need to get a move on if they want to go eat breakfast. Stella offered to make pancakes for them but they want to go out to eat. We have been seeing ads for Ryan's for their buffet breakfast, but there aren't any in north Houston within 20 miles according to their website. We decided to go to IHOP which is pretty near the park. The boys love going there and we timed it perfectly between the crowds. We had no wait when we got there and went right to our table.

After breakfast, we came back home and packed up all the boy's gear that they brought. Stella had washed their clothes a couple of days ago but they still had a huge sack of dirty clothes. I don't know how they do it. In spite of all the warnings, they forgot to pick up their tackle box but as far as we can tell, that's all they left here.

Since it was the middle of the morning on Sunday, we made a quick trip to Texas City. The traffic wasn't bad and there were no accidents on the road, so it was a pleasant trip. We got them home before noon.

We didn't stay very long at their house and came on back home to further avoid the Sunday afternoon traffic. On the way home, Stella decided to look for a new laptop computer. We stopped off at the Sam's club in Texas City but didn't find anything there, so we went to the Best Buy in League City where I had bought mine. She found one there that she liked and we decided to buy it. They offer several add-on packages, but she decided to just buy the restore disk. After we paid for everything, we learned that it would have been after 5 before it was ready. The clerk told us that we could take it to the store nearest Spring so we wouldn't have to drive so far. We made a good trip back up here and dropped the computer off at the store here. They said they would have it ready for us first thing in the morning, which was fine with us.

We came on back home and Cassie-girl was glad to see us. I still miss Ralphie but she sure makes it nice to come home to an excited puppy dog. We watched the NCIS marathon for the rest of the evening. What an exciting life we lead...

So long.

Saturday June 12, 2010-Rayford Crossing RV Resort

Well, here we are, sitting in the heat while the oil spill keeps on ruining the beaches and wildlife areas of the Gulf Coast. I don't mean to lessen the damage that is being done, but let's look at this thing realistically. Oil and gas wells have been drilled offshore for about 60 years and this is the first major incident as far as I know. I don't claim to be an expert on oil spills and leaks but I know there are more than a couple of real experts working on this problem even as we speak. I get real tired of politicians grandstanding and demanding that BP put up twenty billion dollars in an escrow account for the damages. I can't even write out twenty billion, but that's only an afternoon's work for Congress, spending that much money. So much for my BP rant.

I got up this morning and had coffee with the guys, but only Ed showed up. Cameron did come down and had part of a cup before he spilled the rest. That Boy! At least he was up and about before nine.

I went over and helped Ed and a new friend named Terry reinstall his awning. He had damaged the barrel of his awning when the canvas filled with rainwater. He had left and forgot to roll the awning in. His wife was running water over some meat to thaw it and heard a noise and went out to check, and found the awning and called Terry. By then the water had filled the sink and was running onto the floor of the trailer, so now they had two messes to clean up. We got the awning replaced after about an hour, but man, was it hot!

I came back home and cooled off (napped) in my chair while arguing with Tyler over my computer. He loves to play on it, and we have lively arguments over his time on it. Later in the afternoon, we took them to Red Robin for their supper. They love this place, but its too expensive to go to very often. We came back home and they went for another swim. This is their last night here and they wanted to get in one more swim.

So long.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Friday June 11, 2010-Rayford Crossing RV Resort

I woke to another sticky and warm morning and went down and had coffee with the guys at the rally hall. I wondered if Cameron would come down again for coffee with us, but when I got back home he and Tyler were still piled up in the bed. They slept until after 10 o'clock this morning! I guess all the fishing and swimming wore them out.

We still didn't have any wheels, but I spoke with Jake and he said he would bring the truck back here about noon. He got here right on time and showed me what he had done so far, but had not had time to get to the rest. We agreed to bring the truck back to him on Monday but it was nice to have transportation back at last.

The boys spent much of the afternoon in the pool again with their friend Joseph. Both of them were sunburned after they spent so much time outdoors. We had talked to our friends Francis and Valle who live here in the park about going to Mel's Country Kitchen for supper. We left here a little after 4 and made it to the restaurant without any problems with traffic. The restaurant is near Timber Ridge, so when our meal was over, we drove through the park to check the work on the new office. The building is in and in place and they have started working on the wrap-around porch. It should be finished in the next day or so, so Stella can go back to work.

We came back home and the boys went swimming again. Thats one of the great things about Rayford, they can have a good time without a lot of supervision from us. I do go down and check on them occasionally, but they enjoy running around and playing. We enjoy it here because we have so many friends here and it seems like home.

So long.

Thursday June 10, 2010-Rayford Crossing RV Resort

Today was a very laid back day around here. I went down and made coffee for the guys, so that was an enjoyable way to start the morning. Since we don't have a truck today, we are very limited with anything to do today. Cameron woke earlier than Tyler and while I was drinking coffee, I noticed him riding his bike near the rally hall. When I got home, Stella said he had come down to drink coffee with me and the guys but he never came over to ask for some.

Cam and Tyler spent most of the day either fishing or swimming. They made a new friend named Joseph who is visiting the park with his family. They spent a lot of time with him today and stayed outside, which made it nice for me. I didn't have to fight either of them over my computer.That smarty pants Tyler made a comment about me spending all day in my chair, but I reminded him that I had come down to the pool twice in the afternoon to check on them. Granted, I didn't spend a lot of time outside (it's HOT!!) but I did get out a few times.

Stella fixed us some of her soup for supper, and the boys ate when they came in from the pool. Of course, as soon as they finished eating, they went back down to the pool. They're probably growing webs between their toes, they spend so much time in the water. At least they're having fun.

So long.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Wednesday June 9, 2010-Rayford Crossing RV Resort

We woke to cloudy skies that threatened rain much of the day today. The good thing is that it held the temperatures to the upper 80's instead of the mid-upper 90's. Its still very hot but we didn't have the sun beating down on us all day long.

Stella fixed us some breakfast this morning and the boys and I went outside. I went for a walk in the morning and Cam rode his bike along with me. Tyler came back inside and took his familiar place in my recliner with my computer in his lap.

Stella went down to wash our clothes in the laundry and about 12:30, Cameron and I took the truck over to Jake's Automotive to get it worked on. Jake had told me that he had a loaner truck that I could use, but it was gone when we got there. I gave him a list of the items that I wanted him to look at and he brought us back home. He promised to have some of the work done by Friday afternoon, when we will need the truck back. Jake is a good guy and I trust him, but judging by the number of vehicles in his shop, he is soon going to need help in running his business.

We came back home and hung out inside, out of the heat for awhile. The boys decided to go swimming, so Stella and I stayed in the trailer until time to eat supper. I walked down and asked them if they were ready to get out and eat, but they said they will come down when they are ready to eat, which is fine with us. They don't have a chance to swim in a nice pool when they are at home, so I let them play. There were other kids in the pool with them to play with, so they will be fine.

Cam decided to go fishing tonight, so Stella cut up some lunchmeat for him to use as bait. He came back home about 8:30 and said he had caught some fish, but of course, they are catch and release, so he didn't keep any of them. Most of the fish in the pond here are tiny and have been caught many times and released.

It was another nice and peaceful night at Rayford.

So long.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Tuesday June 8, 2010-Rayford Crossing RV Resort

Those lazy boys slept late again this morning. When they finally struggled out of the covers we all ate some cereal for breakfast and I went out and ran some errands. I went to the hardware store and bought some nuts to repair the couch. Apparently the boys squirming around in the bed makes the legs wiggle and the nuts had fallen off the screws holding the legs on, so I bought some more nuts to fix it. When I got done there, I went to Ripley's Automotive to have the dash checked on the truck. When I got there and explained what I wanted done, they again referred me to Jake's Automotive for work on a diesel. I called Jake and made an appointment with him to set up an appointment for tomorrow for him to get started on the work.

While I was at Ripley's it started to rain hard. The wind was blowing and before we knew it, we were in the middle of a storm! When it slacked up a bit, I got back in the truck and came back home. Of course the TV had gone out in the storm, so the boys were mad. I told them that there was nothing I could do about the storm having knocked out the park's Direct TV connection, but they were bored. I told them to go to the pool when the cloud cleared up. During the high winds, one of the premium sites had the umbrella blow away and the glass table top shattered. This was the site where our friends Warren and Judy stay in the winter. also during the storm the power had gone off and the fridge shows to be running on propane but the power is back on, so there is something seriously wrong with the unit. Johnny is supposed to be out tomorrow to check on it, so maybe he will find out what's wrong.

The boys went for their swim when the weather cleared up and Stella and I stayed in the house, thankful for the peace and quiet for a little while. When they finished swimming, we went down and played a few games of ping pong and came back home and ate some leftover sugar-free cobbler. The boys had ice cream and I must confess that I had some too, but it was sooo good!

Stella made her goulash for supper and we had a nice evening in the trailer. Being Tuesday, I watched NCIS and when it was over, I went and laid down and read a new book that I had bought yesterday at Sam's. Cameron came in and crawled in bed with PePaw and we told stories until he got sleepy. He likes sleeping with me until MeMaw comes to bed and he gets into his own bed. It's hard to beat this life of few worries and the grandsons staying with us. LIFE IS GOOD!

So long.

Monday June 7, 2010-Rayford Crossing RV Resort

Here is Tyler, being guarded in bed by Cassie. Cam has already gotten up but Tyler likes to sleep in. I don't blame him because it is his summer break and he needs his rest.

Here they are in their normal daytime positions. Cameron is in Stella's chair on my computer and Tyler is at the table on Stella's computer. They spend a lot of time in these positions when they visit.
Today is our first full day with the boys this summer. They sleep in until 8 o'clock or so, but their bed isn't in our way so we can make the coffee and breakfast and not have them in our way, unlike our old trailer that covered the entire living room floor.
We took the boys with us to run some errands. We went to the bank and opened a Heartland account for our rallies. This way, we can keep the money separate from our household account and track where we've spent the money. We went by Timber Ridge to show them where Stella works and for us to look around the park. We found one new trailer in the park, but since we don't know who has checked in, we can only assume that it is recorded and they paid for the site. The old office is gone but the new one hasn't been moved in yet. I believe it will be in tomorrow with the utilities to be hooked up later in the week.
We went back to Parkway Chevrolet to look further at the '09 truck that I found. They did an appraisal on my truck but their offer came back way lower than we had expected-about half of what we expected to get for the truck. I had already looked up our truck on the Kelly Blue Book website to determine a value, but when Helen, our saleslady, came back with their offer, negotiations pretty well stopped. I really don't understand the deal with General Motors. They have several 2009 trucks that will be two model years old in just a couple of months and they don't want to deal on them. It's no wonder they're bankrupt. They dropped the factory rebates and discounts, then try to steal my trade-in. I understand that they have to make a reasonable profit, but I don't want to get the company out of debt with my purchase. I went home and checked the NADA website and came up with similar figures for our trade in and called Helen back to tell her. We'll see if she calls back with another offer.
We came on back home from there, stopping off at a Valero station to buy fuel. I had found this place that is apparently in a local price war with a Citgo down the street, and has diesel fuel for $2.71 per gallon, by far the best price in the area. The cut-off on the machine was $250.00 and I didn't swipe my card again to fill it completely but the big tank took 82 gallons to fill, and I put an additional 9 gallons in the small tank, so I am near full and have plenty of fuel to run around for a few days aboard.
We went to Sam's club and bought some food to restock after the fiasco with the refrigerator. The boys helped us pick out things that they like, so we're also stocked up with their foods. We couldn't buy everything we needed at Sam's so we stopped by the house and dropped off the goodies that we bought there and went to Kroger to finish shopping. I wasn't feeling well because of a low blood sugar, so I stayed in the truck and ate a small candy bar to raise my sugar level and soon was all better.
The boys were hungry so we took everything home and went to the Chick-Fillet for supper. The food there is pretty good but they have very good milk shakes. Stella ordered one and I drank just a few sips of it, but stayed with water for my own drink. Trying to be a good boy...
We came on back home and hung out here in the park for the rest of the night. The boys went down to the pool to swim and had a good time in the pool. There are few people in the park, so they had the pool to themselves. They came back home, tired and ready for bed soon after. It had been a full day of fun for them.
So long.

Monday, June 7, 2010

Sunday June 6, 2010-Rayford Crossing RV Resort

Here's our old house in Dickinson after the remodeling is finished and the house is for sale. We just wish we had made the decision to sell it sooner.

This morning, we woke pretty late and began to eat our breakfast in the trailer. Tommy called and invited us to eat lunch with them at Cheddars and of course, we did. They came up and picked us up and after a short visit here, we took off for the restaurant. We were there just a few minutes after they opened but we didn't have a very long wait. I think this place would be just as busy if it were twice the size. The food is very good and reasonably priced. They brought us home and we sat inside, out of the heat for a few minutes before they left to go back home.

I had volunteered to help the park out by picking up the trash this afternoon. Chuy is off on Sunday and normally either Billy or Nick picks up the trash, but they were gone for the weekend and I told them I'd pick it up. They told me not to start until after noon, so everyone would have a chance to get moved out and the trash all put out for pickup. I went and got the golf cart and came and picked up Stella. I let her drive the cart and I walked the park-getting my exercise-and got all the trash bags picked up. It wasn't a bad job, but it was HOT!! I broke a sweat as soon as I came outside, but the job didn't last all that long. We were glad to pay a little bit back to Billy and Gwen for everything they have done for us over the years.

While we were eating at Cheddars, Cameron had called me. Not wanting to interrupt our lunch, I told him I'd call him back. After getting back home and relaxing for awhile, I called him back. He asked me to come pick him up on Monday and Tyler on Wednesday. It seems that he wants to come on up and Tyler wants to go to Moody Gardens with the day care at the Karate school. After some discussion, it was decided that we would come on down this afternoon and get them and Tyler would blow off his trip. We went on down pretty soon after hanging up the phone. We ran through a heavy rainstorm in the way down which slowed us down but we made it back home by 8 o'clock. We stopped by our old house (pictured above) and because the boys were hungry, we picked up some sandwiches on the way home. It didn't appear to have rained here at the park at all.

Its good to get the boys up here with us again. They will have a good time here and we will enjoy having them with us.

So long.

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Saturday June 5, 2010-Rayford Crossing RV Resort

Another lazy but hot Saturday morning here...I went down and had coffee with Andy and Ed this morning. This will be Andy's last coffee here until the fall when they return. He is the last of the Winter Texans to leave and we will miss him.

Others that will miss him will be the fish in the local ponds and streams. He is a very avid fisherman and spends much of his day "wetting a hook" and trying to coax the fish to bite it. He must be on a catch and release program because I've never seen any of his catches nor have I heard of him giving fish away, so they must swim away after being caught.

Andy bought a neat little gadget, a floating bobber with a wireless depth finder. He can cast it out and it gives him the depth of the water and also "paints" a picture of any fish below it. It has a screen, one that goes on the rod handle and another model with a wrist band. What will they think of next....

I came back home and ate breakfast with Stella this morning. She is off the the next several days because they are moving her office building out and putting in another office/bathhouse. It should be in by the end of next week, so she'll be back on duty then.

We decided that we needed to level the trailer better, I'm sure that you remember that I moved it over here into this site by myself and it seemed level at the time, but it was off just a bit, so we decided to straighten it out today. It really didn't take very long but I had to disconnect all the utilities and move the steps away from the trailer and backed it up a couple of feet and added some more blocks to make it level again.

When we got through with that project, I decided that since I have the platform in the back of the truck, I would use this to stand on to wash down the front of the trailer. There were many baked-on bugs all over the front and I have gotten tired of looking at it. With arthritis in my shoulders, it's very hard for me to exert the pressure necessary to scrub with a long handled brush, so I can use the platform to scrape the bugs off the trailer. It was much easier to get done now, but I made it a breeze to get them off by using some leftover Streak-X samples that I had laying around. I had gotten these samples a couple of years ago from the company to use as gifts at one of my Heartland rallies and had forgotten how easy it makes bug removal. It took very little effort and the front of the trailer is sparkling clean.

I came back inside to recover from the heat and got a call from my brother Phil. He, his wife Carol and their son Matthew were up here on the north side of Houston and wanted to drop by. They were on their way up to do some shopping, so I told them to come on by. Stella and I both took quick showers and changed clothes, and after another telephone call, decided to just meet them for lunch. They wanted mexican food, so we took them to the Casa Imperial, one of our favorite restaurants. We had a good meal there and came back here to relax and catch up with the family.

Carol is a cancer victim and it is good to see her out and about and eating well. She is about mid way through with her treatment, and she looks great. We stayed here for about two hours and it was interesting to see the way Matthew and Cassie played in the floor. Matthew isn't a kid any more and will a junior in high school. My, my how time flies! It seems like only yesterday that they brought him home from the hospital. Closer to home is Cameron who will be in the fifth grade next year and Tyler, who will be in the eighth! Wow, where did the time go?

So long.

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Friday June 4, 2010-Rayford Crossing RV Resort

We woke to the same old-same old weather. Hot and muggy with a small chance of rain. Actually it has rained a small amount this week, but it just makes it steamy. I took Stella to work and did the morning routine for her. She wants me to come back this afternoon to help her get things boxed up in preparation for the office move.

Cameron called last night and asked if they can come to the park this weekend to spend some time with us. Yeah, right! they want to come to hang out with the other kids in the park and swim in the pool. It's just incidental that we are here too.

I did come back over to Timber Ridge this afternoon, but the only things that I needed to box up took me less than 30 minutes to get done, so I spent some time sitting in the truck reading my book. I found an empty site that was shaded and sat there, running the air conditioner only when necessary. I have a theory that it is good for the body to sweat, but with this heat, it doesn't take long to work up a very body-cleansing sweat. I sat outside as long as I could and went into the office to sit in one of the uncomfortable folding chairs there for awhile. I'm not complaining about the chairs because they aren't there for comfort, but for guests that are checking in.

On the way home, we heard from Cameron again. It seems that he is coming down with strep throat and will need to stay home until Monday to see how he is doing, so I won't have to go down and get them tomorrow after all.

We met our neighbors, Chuck and Robbie and sat outside with them for awhile tonight. The skeeters got pretty bad and we called it a night. We are in the best sites in the park for evening socializing. We have the afternoon shade, which makes it nice to sit out in the evening.

So long.

Friday, June 4, 2010

Thursday June 3, 2020-Rayford Crossing RV Resort

Today was a pretty slow day for us again. I took Stella to work and then went to see my old friend Dave Allen, the Building Official for the city of Tomball. It was good to see him again and we had a nice visit in his office. He took me to lunch at a barbecue restaurant in Tomball and on the way, pointed out some of the new buildings that have been built in town. As the Building Official, he has to do the plan reviews for every building built in the city, then after approval, he and his inspectors oversee the erection process and then inspect the building before it is approved for use. He has a very important job, but he is one of the best and most knowledgeable that I have known.

I came back home and finalized our plans for the trip with the boys this summer. I began making reservations, but was very surprised to learn of the up-charges for the two extra people. I don't see how it costs a park $3.00 per day extra for the two boys but we have to pay it. It's a rip off but we've gotta pay it!

I forgot to mention to you about the @#$& fridge. I told you yesterday that it quit working last night, remember? Well, when I came back from coffee, I opened the door to the freezer and hit the button and it came back on! This is both good and bad news for us. Johnny has already told me that he can't do any diagnostics when it's running, but now we don't have to worry about putting things into the ice chest. I called him anyway and told him what it is doing and he suggested stopping by the next time he is in the park and will take a look at it and see if he can figure anything out. Here's hoping...

We stopped at Pancho's for supper tonight. Stella found a coupon in Donna's book for a buy one-get one free deal, so we took advantage. The food seems to have improved at Pancho's but it's still less than sterling quality mexican food. At least it filled us up.

Cameron called and told us that he made A's and B's on his final report card and now will be going into the 5th grade. Tyler also made good grades and will be going into the 8th grade! Wow, where does the time go? It seems like only yesterday that I was carrying those two little boys around, showing them off. Time does indeed fly! Cam asked if they can come stay with us, so I'll go pick them up either Saturday or Sunday. My life changes so much when they are here, but I like having them around.

So long.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Wednesday June 2, 2010-Rayford Crossing RV Resort

Today I got up and made coffee for the guys and sure enough, John showed up with Andy. He said he has been sick for the last few days, so it was good to see him again. I had missed seeing him walking his little dog, so I knew something must be wrong.

I took Stella to work and called an old friend of mine that is the Building Official for the city of Tomball and made arrangements to eat lunch with tomorrow. I'll go to his office and meet him there. Then I went to look at some trucks at Parkway Chevrolet. They have several new '09 Chevy 3500's and one demo unit to look at.

I came back home and did some research on the trucks that I looked at. I think they may be a good deal, but it all depends on what the dealer tells me and the price he offers. We'll see how this works out.

Nick brought some boxes over to take to Stella at Timber Ridge. They will be moving into their new building later in the week, so now she can start packing things up. I helped her out this morning by going over to the laundry and robbing the change out of the machines. Wow, there are a lot of quarters in there. she later told me there was almost $190. Lots of clean clothes...

We went back by Parkway Chevrolet and looked at the trucks again. The saleslady that waited on me was busy and couldn't come out, but she called me later and apologized. She is going to work up some more figures for us and we'll see what happens.

Donna had given us a coupon book for restaurants in this area, so we took advantage of it and went to Marco's Mexican restaurant. There used to be one in the Clear Lake area that we went to all the time but it closed, so it was nice to go back to one. The food was good and we enjoyed it, and really enjoyed the two meals for the price of one.

When we got home, guess what we discovered? Yep, you're right again. The dang refrigerator has stopped working again! Johnny will be getting a call tomorrow for sure. This is getting silly.

So long.

Tuesday June 1, 2010-Rayford Crossing RV Resort

Since the fridge is now working again, Stella got up this morning and put everything away from the ice chest back into the refrigerator. This is getting old! I called Johnny at the RV service and left him a message that the thing is working again. He has already told me that he can't do any diagnostics if its working, so it is pointless for him to come out. We'll see how long it lasts this time.

Me and some of the guys are having coffee again in the rally hall, so I went down and made it up for us and came back home to shower and clean up. Although I expected a few guys to show up, only Andy came down this morning, so we had plenty of coffee.

I came home and ate breakfast before I took Stella to work. When we got there we made a drive around the park to see what differences there were this morning but there was only one new rig in the park. Of course she got everything straightened out shortly and under control like I knew she would. I came home and worked on our summer trip with the boys. Now I just have to talk to Kim about when she needs the boys back to get them ready for school and I can make the reservations. I'm looking forward to a fun trip with them and it will be their first trip to the Rockies. It should be a lot cooler there to boot, so we'll all get some relief from this heat.

So long.

Monday May 31, 2010-Rayford Crossing RV Resort

Happy Memorial Day to all the veterans and current armed services personnel on duty throughout the world. Thank you for your service and may God Bless you and the United States.

Since the fridge is out, Stella decided to cook up all the meat so it wouldn't spoil. She spend most of the day cooking but the trailer sure smelled good! She must have fried up two pounds of bacon, and we made use of it by eating bacon, lettuce and tomato sandwiches. Very tasty!!

We didn't do too much today and tried our best to stay out of the heat. Most of the park guests left today so the place is pretty empty. There are a few folks still here but nothing like the weekend.

Now guess what? Yep, the fridge started working on it's own this evening. The temperature fell overnight and it seems to be working now. We're holding our breath to see how long it holds out.

So long.

Sunday May 30, 2010-Rayford Crossing RV Resort

Another hot day here at Rayford! Tommy and Susan are leaving this morning so we walked down to tell them goodbye. We took our coffee cups with us and of course, Tommy gave us refills when we got there. I took my BP travel mug that I got from a seminar I went to when I worked in Manvel that was put on by the pipelines and refineries in Brazoria county. The seminar is held once a year at the fairgrounds and is very instructive about first responder's reactions to emergencies at pipelines and refineries. I remember back in the day when I began my career in law enforcement, we were sent out to investigate anything coming from the plants; smells, noises etc. I'm glad that someone finally realized that it is very dangerous to send in unequipped or under equipped people to check out life threatening spills, leaks and very flammable situations. At least now they send the fire department with breathing apparatus and sniffers to tell them when there is danger.

After telling them goodbye, we came back home and guess what? You're right, the dang refrigerator quit working again. How did you know that? We can't figure out why it just quits but it does. And of course, it quit in the middle of the holiday weekend. I called my friend Johnny at Northwest RV Repair in Tomball. He told me to call him back on Tuesday but that after long weekends, it's very busy but he will work me in. He is the one I used to work on the fridge back in October when it quit working. We'll see what he finds this time.

As I said before, it was another hot day, so we stayed inside most of the day and out of the heat. Late in the afternoon I went to the office and bought a couple of bags of ice to salvage as much as we can from the fridge. We had just begun to fill it back up last week but it wasn't as full as it could have been. We took out most of the stuff in the refrigerator but it is still cold inside, so hopefully we won't lose anything.

So long.