Saturday, January 28, 2017

We Are in Quartzsite, AZ

We packed up and left windy and rainy Palm Springs on Wednesday to travel east to Quartzsite, AZ.  We got here a little after noon......except that with the time change, it was around 1:20 pm.  Here's the view as we approached Q.                         
I'm always amazed by the number of RVs out on BLM land, dry camping.
 We got checked in and walked the dogs before we began setting up.  It was cold and windy here, oh joy, but we got to work setting things up.  Our very dear friends, Ray & Carol got back from roaming around Q around 2 o'clock.  It was great to see them.  I can't remember just when we last got together, but I know it's been too long!  We chatted a while, then finished setting up.  Later Carol came back and we snacked on crackers and strawberry cream cheese.  Yummy.  They had dinner plans with family, so we invited them to join us for dinner on Thursday night. 
We are "dry camping" which means we have no hook ups for electricity, water or sewer dump, so we are using only disposable paper plates & cups, plastic silverware, and using bottled water to make coffee and other drinks.  We are only allowed to run the generator until 10 pm, so after that we have to shut down most everything, and go to bed early or sit in the dark!  Thursday morning we woke up to find that the furnace, which runs on propane but needs electricity (from the house batteries to start it up and run the fan) was not working and it was only 46 degrees inside..........much too cold for me!  We tried to fire up the generator, but it couldn't start either, since the batteries were DEAD.  Jim turned on the engine, and we were able to start the generator and then everything worked.  We turned on both the furnace and the electric space heaters and it still took over an hour before my toes thawed out!  After a quick breakfast, we left for the big tent with Ray & Carol for sight seeing and shopping.  We had our list of what we hoped to get.  We found some of the stuff we wanted, but not all.  We went to Silly Al's for a lunch of delicious pizza then came back here to find that the house batteries had not held any charge, as we had hoped they would after running the generator for that long.  So we drove over to RV Lifestyles and bought two new Interstate deep cycle batteries, and Jim & Ray got them installed correctly  so we now have good, strong batteries to run our furnace and refrigerator when we have to turn off the generator.  The sunsets out here are really beautiful.

 It really is amazing all the colors you can see in a sunset if you take the time to enjoy it.  I have always admired and loved the beauty of the desert here in Arizona, but I'm not sure I could stay here during the heat of the summer. Someday we will have to figure out where to settle when we decide we can't or don't want to travel anymore, but so far, we enjoy the traveling and have not decided where we will land.

Yesterday we drove out to a place our friend Fred had taken us to several years ago.  It was called the Broken Bolt Ranch and was run by a guy named Red.  It was an old collection of travel trailers that had been re-configured to be other kinds of buildings.  He had a very interesting collection of antique dolls of significant value.  There was a "country store" and a blacksmith shop and a building where they did rock tumbling and made pretty nice jewelry too.  We had to ask directions before we found the place. but we never got to go in because it is not open to the public.  One could tell by the sign which said "Prayer is a good way to get to heaven, but trespassing will get you there faster."  
 We saw this sign inside the fenced area that was the ranch.  Sadly, it's just a junkyard now.
 We asked a woman who lived in a mobile home next to the property, and she told us that Red had died 5 years ago.  She also told us that the owners were not happy when they found out Red had been giving unauthorized tours, and collecting donations, which he had pocketed for himself.  You just never know about people!  
Nearby we saw this, but it's not really a skeleton.  It looks like it was made of some kind of plastic or such, but it reminded me of what they say about Arizona, "it is hot, but it's a dry heat!!!

Last night Carol & Ray came over for burgers and fries for dinner.  It was so nice to have all our equipment working the way it usually does!  Today they headed back to their home in California.  They will be coming back out here for the FMCA Rally in Chandler, AZ.  We thought about going to that event too, but didn't book it.  There is still time if we decide we want to.  It would change ALL of our dates we have planned, but life's an adventure and we want to live it!!!!!  Today we are heading out to browse and shop at Tyson Wells.  
I sincerely hope each and everyone of you makes the most of each day you have.  Life is short, and today is a gift, that's why it's called the present.  I don't know who to credit that statement to, but I admit I do not take credit for it, but I do agree with it.  Enjoy the present, don't waste time over what is past, and I hope you will look forward to the future for all it holds.  

Sunday, January 8, 2017

Patience is a Virtue

Many people have trouble with being patient.  I am reminded of the cartoon of a child looking up towards heaven saying "Lord I need patience, and I need it RIGHT NOW".  We all hear about the impatience of drivers who honk their horns the instant a red light turns green if the driver in front of him doesn't move immediately.   It makes me sad because people like this are missing out on so much of what God has given to us.  We tend to sleep late, and leave for work later than we should have, so we are stressed, and risk unsafe driving practices, that could result in road rage, accidents, and sadly, sometimes homicides.  If we get up earlier, and leave early enough to allow for driving conditions, we might get to work on time, and NOT stressed out.  Then you can start your day with a smile for your co-workers.  Imagine how much better your day could go if you start it without stress!  
When was the last time you took time to stop and smell the roses, or to observe a beautiful sunset?  We saw this on Friday on our way back home from Hemet.  The sky was just glorious with colors.  God is an amazing artist, and it's really sad when we don't take time to appreciate His works.  Appreciation leads us to gratitude.  Gratitude helps us to realize just how blessed we truly are.  We should never focus on what we lack, but instead focus on what we DO have.  There will always be people who have more things than we do, but if we dwell on what we don't have, we won't enjoy all that we have been given.  Most of us have reasonably good health, family, friends and pets to love, enough food to eat, a roof over our heads, and a little money in the bank.  That puts us ahead of millions of people in the world.  There are many people who could use a little help now and then.  Maybe if you extend a helping hand to others, you will gain even more than you give.  

Next I want to talk about forgiveness.  I know too many people who have family rifts that go on for years.   This life is too short to spend it being mad at others.  Jesus taught us to love our neighbors as ourselves.  We weren't born knowing how to love anyone.  Hopefully, we learned by watching our family members show love to one another.  But we are only human, and we make mistakes, and sometimes we hurt a loved one by what we have said or done.  It takes a lot of negative energy to maintain anger over such offenses.  As I said, life is too short to waste it on hateful feelings.  We are starting into a new year, and this would be a great time to choose to forgive anyone who has hurt you.  Free yourself of the stress and strain of this anger.  Give yourself the gift of a new attitude, one of love and forgiveness.  And while you're at it, why don't you forgive yourself for the wrongs you may have done to others, and let go of the guilt you've been carrying around?  God has forgiven you, and if He can forgive you, why would you ever think you can't forgive yourself?

Life may be short, but it can be wonderful.  It can be filled with joy, and love and happiness, if you only accept the blessings God has promised us.  It's your choice.  Someone once told me that life is 10% about what happens to us, and 90% about how we choose to react to it.  I choose to cherish each day, even the difficult ones because I KNOW that God is in control, and everything will be just fine, according to His will.  That takes a lot of stress off me because I know I don't have to deal with anything by myself.  Someone once sent me an email (sorry but I can't remember who sent it, or who originally wrote it), that was written as if by God.  It said something like "I just wanted you to know that I am in charge today, and I won't need any help from you, so have a wonderful day."  That works for me.  How about you?  Have a nice day, and a great year.

Thursday, January 5, 2017

Here's Hoping Your New Year Has Been As Good as Ours

Happy New Year to One and All!  

This will probably be a shorter blog than usual, but I will try to hit the high spots of our week.
We saw this beautiful snow capped mountain last week.  So glad we weren't close to these mountains though
On December 28th Jim had a tumor removed from his right wrist.  The doctor had said it was definitely a cancer, so he treated the site before he dressed the wound.  It was hard trying not to worry while we waited for the results to come back.  Today we got the wonderful news that the tumor was a pre-cancerous keratinoma, and he will not need further treatment for it.  We could not stop grinning all morning!!!  I cried tears of relief and joy after the phone call.  Thank all of you for the prayers.  I am so grateful to our awesome God.
 Here's the kids celebrating Christmas.

We didn't go anywhere on New Year's eve.  It was raining terribly again here that day.  We had planned to go to the Family Center here for a free deejay dance party.  Instead, we stayed home with our furry kids.  I was really glad, because, as usual, people shot off fire crackers from about 9:30 pm.  Willie is always terrified of fire works.  We had to put his Thunder Shirt on for the evening.  If you are not familiar with the Thunder Shirt, it's available at PetSmart and PetCo stores.  It's made of a stretchy material and secured with velcro.  It's like a warm hug, and works wonders for Willie when he's afraid.  We did manage to stay up until 12 midnight and welcomed the New Year with a toast of Sparkling Cider!!!  

Now I want to tell you about our newest gadget which we got a couple days after Christmas.  It's called the Power Air Fryer XL.  It's really quite a nice device.  You can fry, roast, and bake in it without using any oil.  Jim wanted it to bake doughnuts in, but we did air fry French Fries, and they were really tasty.  We even air fried an 8 pound turkey breast.  It was incredible!  

Jim talked to Charles today, and he hopes to have our new table made before we leave here next week.  YAY!!!  We will be back in Palm Springs from January 12th to the 25th, then we will be going to Quartzsite, AZ for a week.  Our plans after that were on hold until we found out if Jim was going to need follow-up treatments, but now we are working on our travel plans......and we may be on the road through mid-April.  Will let you know once our plans are definite.  

Take care, and have a wonderful week.  By the way, how are you doing with your New Year's Resolutions?  I hope you made resolutions that you can keep.  Happy New Year and love to all of you.