Saturday, June 17, 2017

Yard Entertainment - Appointment Week - Movie

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Auburndale, FL  Hi 87  Lo 72

It's been a quiet week but there's always excitement if you look for it. I was watching out the window for the alligator that people have said is up at our end of the lake. I noticed two birds protecting their little one from something in the grass. I wasn't sure what it was but the birds were puffing up their feathers and making all kinds of sounds.  Jim went out to investigate.  (Click on the pictures to enlarge).

This is no tiny snake. It's a Cotton Mouth Water Moccasin poisonous snake

Jim went for a broom the only thing we have (that will soon change) to get the snake back into the canal. It started for the house, he tackled it enough to get it going the other direction and back in the canal. When he went to the neighbors it was gone by the time he got back. We're hoping it's not going to end up in the car or on the doorstep at some point.

We had our yearly doctor appointments for this year. Both of us had our eyes checked. Jim is doing well and got a contact for reading for one eye and already has a contact for distance. He's doing quite well with the differences, He's happy not to have to carry readers everywhere he goes. I tried a year to do that with the cataract surgery, but just never could see well. We both have had our physicals and I'm fine and will wait for the blood work for Jim.

We went to see the movie Megan Leavy. She was in the Marines and was a dog handler. She was honored with Purple Heart when her dog and her were in a bomb explosion. The full story here.  It's a great movie and for the family.

It's been raining and storming. We had a flock of birds swoop near our canal and just stood still facing the wind till it died down. It was really neat looking.

My latest crochet project is a few more turtles. I'm working on a full camping scene.

We'll see you next Saturday.

Saturday, June 10, 2017

RVers Visit - Birthday - Rain

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Auburndale, FL  Hi 87  Lo 72

Our friends, Hank and Selene,  our friends from  North Carolina are fulltime RV'ers and let us know they were an hour north of us this week. We're home most of the time and told them to come on over. They wanted to see our place then we went out to lunch. We had a great visit. We'll see them again this winter.  (Click on the pictures to enlarge).

Every year I look forward to my birthday. This is year 14 to have my lobster dinner. Last year we found Boston Feast which has a big buffet of seafood. I asked the server if there's a limit on how many  lobsters I can eat and she said no. There's a guy that comes in about every three months and eats 100 lobsters. I ate three lobsters and at least six crab legs. The seafood comes from Nova Scotia.  They also had octopus salad which was very good. Needless to say I was quite full when I left.

Octopus salad with shrimp

I should have just taken the whole thing.

I love crab legs almost just as much.

In February and March I got caught up with  the Animal Adventure Park in NY with a giraffe having a baby. In April, the giraffe named April had her baby. They still have the cam up and I watch them on Friday thru Sunday evenings along with thousands of other people  The little one grows up so  fast in a week. Taj is the baby's name and plays with mom's tail, or romps around the room. It's so cute. Jim bought me this T-shirt.

It reads, I suffer from OGD,  (Obsessive Giraffe Disorder).  Yep, very true.

The other thing I really wanted was a wine cooler. I collected wine from all over the country while in the RV and I hate taking room in the refrigerator for wine. Now I have a cold bottle any time.

It's been a great week and a great birthday. We've had rain every day since June 1, and we're getting slowly out of the drought in this area. The little turtles are in the canal beside us which will at some point bring in the alligator from the other side of the lake. I'm watching closely. I hope to get a picture when I see it.

This is the canal and sunset this week.

Saturday, June 3, 2017

Memorial Day - ID Card - Lapghans

                                                            Chatroom chat for anyone 8:30 eastern time

Auburndale, FL   Hi 85 Lo 72 -  It's summer, it's hot and humid and the afternoon rains have begun.  Life in Florida in the summer time.

The first day back from Illinois was all the normal to do list of laundry, putting everything away, checking around the house to be sure there was no storm damage etc.  All was fine and we settled into the normal clubhouse event routine. Tuesday is shuffleboard, Wednesday morning is the meeting for the week. It doesn't change and there's only about 100 people or less that are still in the park, but the coffee and donuts are great and so is the friend chat time. Wednesday afternoon is hand and foot card game for the women. Thursday is crafts at 1:00pm. We're making mats for the military overseas and that will be ongoing for awhile. Friday morning is shuffleboard again. It's all the things to do but sometimes we have other plans or appointments. We'll throw in a movie once in awhile.

Memorial day we had a get together in the clubhouse.  (Click on the pictures to enlarge).

The table with pictures of service from the residents.

The dessert is always popular.

Ham and chicken sandwiches, baked beans and potato chips.

The kitchen help.

Overall view of the party.

We're not allowed to have balloons go into the air, so we used bubbles to remember those that lost their lives in war. The residents blew bubbles to the playing of taps.

It was touching and we're glad to be a part of the Memorial.

The craft club has been working on military mats made of grocery bags since October,  but also a few have made lap afghans for the wheelchair patients at the VA hospital.

This is double sided, showing both sides.

Same with this one, double sided.

Gail showing her lap afghan.

My military ID expired this week so we went to MacDill AFB to get a new one. Our appointment was at 2:00 but we dropped off the afghans at the VA hospital, then went to the BX for lunch. Some players from the Tampa Bay Buccaneers football team were there to  sign autographs . This guy was going thru the lunch area.

I'm back to crocheting and I did get a Pansy done. Another flower for the craft bazaar.

On the way home we got into a rain storm on highway I-4. We didn't drive over 45 mph, took us awhile to get home. We have a busy week ahead of us. See you next Saturday.

Saturday, May 27, 2017

Grandson's Graduation

O'Fallon, IL    Hi 75 Lo 50  for the week we were in Illinois.

Our grandson's Kyle and Kendall both had their graduation ceremonies this past week in OFallon, Illinois. Kendall graduated from eighth grade, and Kyle graduated from high school. O'Fallon is one of the few places we've seen that has a graduation ceremony for 8th grade changing districts.

We flew on Allegiant Airlines from St. Petersburg/Clearwater into Belleville, Il, which is next to Scott AFB and less than 10 miles from our family's house. We picked up our rental car, an Infinity SUV to drive for the week. I can't say either of us was impressed with the Infinity, but it was a free upgrade from the compact we signed up for, so we're not complaining.

Our other son Rick came down from Chicago with youngest grandson Jack to be with us for the weekend. Jack is a soccer player so the kids played basketball and soccer in the back yard.

Playing with several balls, one or two always go into the neighbor's yard.

Sunday was the graduation party for both boys. Angie, our daughter in law, did a great job with decorations, including a board with pictures of Kyle from his past school years. (Click on pictures to enlarge)


Kendall with cookie basketball court. A friend of theirs made the cookies. Kendall is a basketball player.

A few pictures of the party.

All three grand kids, Kendall, Jack and Kyle

There were 225 graduates at Kendall's ceremony on Tuesday evening. Here's Kendall getting his 8th grade graduation certificate.

Kendall, Dee, Jim

Frank, Kendall, Angie, Kyle

Kyle's high school graduation was today (Saturday), We couldn't stay through this weekend, so we watched it streamed live on the internet this morning. It's great that we could still see it.

Screen shot of Kyle getting his diploma, from the internet live feed.

The end when they throw their hats in the air.

The rest of the week we stayed busy. We had lunch with Steve, one of Jim's good friends from his working days in the Air Force.


On Thursday we went to downtown St Louis for a tour of Busch Stadium, home of the St. Louis Cardinals. It's a beautiful setting with the arch in the background.

View from the radio announcers' booth.

Some overall pictures of club areas and around the stadium.

These pictures show the evolution of the Cardinals' "bird on the bat" emblem.

Kyle and Kendall

Notice the seats under the Cardinal Nation sign. That grandstand is on a building in "Ball park Village" across the street, and they sell tickets to watch the game from the rooftop.

Jim in the Cardinals dugout. He was like a kid in a candy store!

Kyle, Frank, Kendall, and Jim

Statue of Stan "The Man" Musial is in front of the stadium. The greatest Cardinal of them all.

Jim got to try on a 2006 Championship ring.

Jim's favorite Cardinal is Ozzie Smith, who retired in 1996. There were several game-used bats you can handle, and Jim chose Ozzie's.

The central atrium at Ballpark Village, across the street from the stadium, where you can eat and watch the game on a huge screen.

We took a drive along the riverfront in front of the Arch. The water level of the Mississippi River is very high. These steps normally go down to the wharf where you can park. It's all under water.

They are renovating the whole area around the Arch grounds, including the museum.

Our return flight left Belleville around 6 pm. I thought I'd have a great view of the St. Louis area but it was too cloudy.

Each end of the very small Mid-America Airport terminal, which has only one gate.

The airport terminal, as we were climbing into the air.

I watched where we were from the GPS on the phone. This is over Tennessee.

Sunset just before we landed in St. Petersburg, Fl

Coming in for a landing

This concludes another trip. See you next Saturday.