Wednesday, November 22, 2017

The Day Before Thanksgiving, So Much to be Thankful For

It has been a busy week since we last posted here, so I'll try to be brief in my reporting of it all.

We absolutely love the new oven and refrigerator.  Even though the fridge is supposed to be the same size, it seems to have more space in it.  I'm not sure if that is possible, but it seems so.  The oven is definitely 5 inches taller, so we are looking forward to roasting a 12 pound turkey in it tomorrow!  Last Saturday I baked a lemon cake in it, and it turned out perfect!  I used to have to turn the pan around half way through the baking to get both sides done......and it was never level on top.  This one was perfect, thanks to the new oven.

Here we are, set up in our site at Wilderness Lakes.  Last week I forgot to put a picture of our site in the blog, so here it is.

 Saturday  night our friends Diane & Steve came over for dinner and brought us an early Christmas gift.  They built the base stand and added the hanging flag on it.  She let us go pick the kind of solar lights we wanted for it, and we took her advice about using the center hole for seasonal flowers.  We had to order the lights from WalMart to get what we wanted, but they arrived yesterday, so we got to enjoy it last night. 
  I hope you will click on the picture so you can see how beautiful the Christmas scene on the flag is.  I am going to also include the picture I took last night, so you can see how much light the lamps provide.  The flag can be removed and replaced for the other seasons of the year.  I'm looking forward to the many different flags and flowers we can use in it.  Thank you Diane & Steve for this beautiful gift.

This just puts me in mind, once again, that we all need to begin each day with an attitude of gratitude.  Even when it may not seem to be true, we all have so many blessings to be thankful for, like our true friends and family, and loving pets.  It's so easy to forget that and feel sorry for ourselves if we focus on what other people may have that we don't have.  Most of us have all that we truly NEED and much more.  We sometimes even resent others who we perceive to have more that we think they deserve.  To feel this way only harms us because we feel bitter and spiteful.  Instead of being jealous of others, please take a moment to thank God for all you do have.  God KNOWS what you really need, and he will always provide it if you just ask Him for it.

Yesterday I was looking at our December issue of Motorhome Magazine.  In the back of it Alan Rider writes a column called "The Road Ahead".  In it he made reference to a well known phrase that we should all remember.  It simply said "Above All Else, Be Kind".  Please stop for a second and think about those five words.  The season to celebrate the birth of our precious Lord Jesus is fast approaching.  We are being bombarded with crass commercialism already, with very little mention of the true Reason for the Season.  As people begin the shopping (or have already begun it) how many people will take time to stop and be kind to someone else?  Yesterday we were in WalMart to pick up our solar lights.  A woman in a wheelchair was having trouble with her purse and packages.  I was so proud that Jim spotted the woman and spent a few minutes helping her to rearrange everything so she could continue on her way.  Others had pushed past her as if she was just another inconvenience to them.  It never hurts to be kind to others....and it will even lift your spirits when you see the smile on the face of the person you helped.  Every day offers us a choice.  We can choose to think only of ourselves, and what WE want, or we can choose to thank God for each day we are alive and ask Him how He would like for us to use this day to His Glory.  When you wake up, please think about all that you have to be thankful for, and choose to use your gifts to glorify Him by helping others who are less fortunate.  

I often speak of the need to purge because of our small space, but it also is a way to help others.  Do you have more clothes than you will ever need?  You could donate clothes to a homeless shelter or Salvation Army store.  Do you  have tons of blankets?  Animal shelters always need blankets to keep the animals warm.  And speaking of animal shelters, please think of them when you make your list of donations this year.  They need dog and cat food, animal beds and even toys, collars and leashes too.  Homeless shelters need donations of non-perishable foods too.  There are also Veterans and their families that need all the help they can get.  Donations of tooth brushes, and tooth paste, socks and underwear, warm jackets and gloves are always appreciated.  I'm sure you can go online to look for charities that are in need of whatever you can donate at this time of year.  I even saw a donation tree at WalMart asking for help for local needy families.  

Have a wonderful and blessed Thanksgiving, and please begin the Christmas season with your focus solidly on the true reason for the season.  And don't eat toooooo much tomorrow.

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

It's November and the Nights are Getting Cooler

We left Palm Springs last week on Sunday, and spent three days at the Elks in Yucaipa.  The folks were very friendly and it's a pretty lodge, with a cool picture of an elk in the bar area.  We came in for their Monday Night Tacos, but I must admit, not as good as Taco Night at Garden Grove lodge.  Somebody should teach them how it gets done right!  The next day George and Donna took us to their favorite restaurant for lunch.  I tried their Philly Cheese Steak sandwich.  The best Philly sandwich I've ever had was at the A & B Drive-in we went to in T or C, New Mexico, and their reputation is still intact!  I can't wait to get back there in February to enjoy them again!

We got to Wilderness Lakes last Wednesday, and our new gel foam mattress was here to pick up.  We got a great pull-through site and hurried to get all set up.  When we were done, we pulled the sheets and old mattress off the bed and set up the new one.  They said it might take up to 48 hours for it to fully expand, so we expected to have to sleep out on the couch, but that was not the case.  It expanded right away and we were able to sleep on it that same night.  We had to get Millie a taller set of steps so she can get up onto the bed, but both dogs love it!  I can't tell you how great it is to sleep on this new mattress.  Our friend Greg hauled away the old one, and we gave him the 2 inch thick memory foam topper we had used for about a year.  So everybody wins!
Tony came over the next day, for a three day stay.  He installed the new white sink and taller faucet in our bathroom.  Jim had installed the new polished oak toilet seat and chrome towel ring.  All good.
I have ordered a new chrome soap dish for bars of soap, and a beautiful sea shell style dispenser for liquid soap.  Also ordered new hand towels and a new rug for in the bathroom.  It's going to look really amazing when it all gets here.

On Monday Brad came to install the new stove/oven and refrigerator in our kitchen.  I guess nothing ever goes exactly as planned.  First he got here three hours late, and the stove was too big for the opening from the old stove, so he had to cut down 5 inches to make it fit in.  This also required moving the fuse box farther away, which required extending each of the wires about 8 extra inches!  He couldn't bring the refrigerator in through the door, so he said he would come back with a helper to bring it in through the front door on Tuesday.  They ended up taking the house door off completely to get it inside.  Then the doors on the fridge opened on the wrong side, so they both had to be relocated on the other side, beside the stove.  They couldn't get the fridge door to close, so they ended up taking it off again, before finding the problem and fixing it.  We discovered the stove sat 3/4 inch farther out than the old one had, so he said he would put a wood strip in on each side....... to make it look better, and he left.  I called our buddy Greg who came over and looked at it.  He said all that needed to be done was to remove the stove, cut 3/4 inch out of the counter behind the stove and push it in so it fits flush with the front of the counter!  Today he did just that and it is wonderful.  Now my kitchen is perfect.  I have a bigger oven and could even roast a 10 pound turkey in it, maybe even a 12 pounder!  Finally I will be able to bake angel food cake again!  It even has a broiler in it.  I am so delighted with what Greg has done.  And when we do get the new convection/microwave oven, he will build us a shelf for it above the stove.
It's so pleasing to finally have a kitchen as workable as we had in our house.  
And it's great to have friends like Greg who help us out when things don't go as well as we had hoped.  We will be mostly eating hot dogs and beans until the new kitchen stuff is paid for, but we will be cooking them in style!  
Now we have to get caught up on the more mundane tasks, like laundry and house cleaning, but all is well.  Our dear friends Almeta and Rueben left today to spend a few days with their daughter and son-in-law here in Menifee before leaving to go spend six weeks with the other daughter and her family up in West Hills.  We will miss them terribly, but we wish them a safe and wonderful trip and a marvelous and blessed Thanksgiving and Christmas with their loved ones.  

We have so very much to be thankful for this year, as usual.  First, our health is pretty good, and Jim is doing well after his first surgery.  The second operation will be on December 15th, so he will be well and recovering before Christmas.  Tony will be here with the dogs when we go up to Loma Linda VA hospital that day, and for a couple days after.  I was hoping he would join us for Thanksgiving, but he is spending it with his lady, Jan.  Second, our pets are in good health and as playful and loving as ever.  Third, our home is in good shape and we still love living and traveling in it.  And most of all, we are so very, very thankful because we know and love our savior Jesus Christ, who loves us and watches over us each and every day.  When things don't go the way we had hoped they would, we KNOW our Heavenly Father is in control, and all is well.  We know we are where we are supposed to be, and we take great comfort in His love and protection.  I hope each of you has asked Jesus to be your personal Lord and Savior, and will know the true joy that brings, a joy nothing else can offer to you.  Have a wonderful day and a very joyous Thanksgiving and Christmas ahead, but I will write again before that.  Bye for now.