Tuesday, February 26, 2019

Home At Last!!!!

We arrived here last Thursday and although it wasn't raining, it WAS pretty cold and windy.  We got here and into our site by about 11 am and began setting up.  There are many things we don't set up in an RV park if we are only going to be there for a few days.  However, we plan to stay here about three months, so that meant we would get settled in!  Many of my owls came out of storage, and it's great to see them again.  We put our small refrigerator outside and hung the wind chime owls off the cover over the picnic table outside.  I will include pictures in the next blog.  It took most of that day and part of Friday to get completely settled in.  Also, we went to the office to get two months worth of mail and packages. 

We had ordered a new electric blanket because ours had died on the way here..............so nice to get that on the bed and be warm and cozy at night.  The funny part was that we set the temperature at #5 about an hour before we went to bed.....and it was MUCH too warm, so we had to turn it off for a few hours to cool down. Now we set it on #1 or #2 but no more.

On Saturday we drove to TorC.  I couldn't wait any longer to go to the A B Drive-in for a delicious Philly Cheese Steak Sandwich.  I was NOT disappointed!!!  It is still the BEST in the US.  A little messy, but still so delish!  
 This is a small family owned place and they were happy to see us back here.  After lunch we went to Wal-Mart to get a few groceries we needed, and to my delight, I found this adorable owl nightgown.  I know I didn't need it, but I couldn't resist it.
I was chatting (via text messages) with my dear friend Sherry, about our concerns about the quality of water in some of the places we stay.  Even here, the water is quite high in calcium.  I told her we have been using two Brita water filter pitchers but I wasn't sure that was enough some places.  She informed me about the Zero Water filter pitcher that she and Willie use, so I did some online research and decided that we should also get one. We looked at them while we were at Wal-Mart.  They had plenty of filters, but those would NOT fit our Brita pitchers, and the only Zero pitcher they stocked was the 10 cup size, so we bought it.  When we got home we found that it would not fit our RV refrigerator.  After filling it, we used the water in it to fill our four re-usable plastic water bottles.  Jim has two that are 24 ounce and I have two with owls on them that hold 16 ounces.  Then Jim refilled the pitcher and put it in the refrigerator outside.  We also went online to my beloved walmart.com and found a Zero water pitcher that holds 6 cups, AND it will fit in the door of our inside refrigerator, so now we are set up for high quality drinking water.  This pitcher even has a meter to test the purity of your water, so you know when you will need to replace the filter!  Many thanks to Sherry for telling me about this new-to-us water filtration pitcher.

I also ordered some new tee shirts for Millie as some of hers had shrunk (I can't believe she gained weight!).  I found a modestly priced set of four tees.  The white one says "I tried to be good, but I got bored!"  The blue one shows a ball and says "You threw it, you go get it".  The red one says "Excuse me, are you going to eat that?" And last but not least, the green one says "I don't always bark at night, but when I do, it's about nothing."  I will include pictures in my next entry.

After going out for lunch on Saturday, Pastor Ric and Mary called and wanted to take us out to dinner that night at the Arrey Cafe.  I wasn't too hungry so I just had a small crispy chicken salad.  It was also delish and the small one was plenty for me.  Thanks again Ric and Mary.

Sunday we got to go back to church in TorC, and it was wonderful to see our church family of friends.  Pastor Dudley was as cheerful as ever.  It was a delightful surprise to us to find that he was offering communion that day, and he did his entire sermon on the subject of the significance of the Last Supper and of the sacrament of communion.  I don't think I ever doubted how very important and precious this gift from Jesus to us is, but I have never heard anyone speak so eloquently or passionately about all that it represents.  If you ever felt any doubt or confusion about how very much God loves each of you, please read the Gospels about the Last Supper.  Jesus KNEW what was ahead for Him, but He did not turn away from it.  His death was more horribly painful than anything most of us could even imagine.  But He allowed Himself to be crucified so that WE can enter the Kingdom of Heaven.  I don't doubt for a minute that if He had wanted to, He could have been spared that agony, but then none of us would be saved.  As it said in John 3:16 "For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten son that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life".  How truly amazing is that??? I have never doubted this, but Pastor Dudley's sermon really explained it more deeply than I had ever heard it before.  Amen.  

I know of some people who think that this life is all there is, and I feel so sorry for them.  They think that when they die, they go into a grave and that is the end of everything, but that is NOT true.  This life IS a gift from our Heavenly Father, and that's why it's called the "present".  But it most assuredly NOT His greatest gift.  His greatest gift was His son Jesus and the promise of everlasting life AFTER death on earth.  We strive to make the most of each day we have here, but Jim and I both know that our everlasting life will be more glorious and amazing than we can begin to imagine.  

You can't get into Heaven by being a nice, or kind, or generous person.  In fact, there is nothing you can do to EARN the right to get into Heaven.  The price has already been paid for your salvation, and all you have to do is accept Jesus as your personal Lord and Savior.  Please don't be afraid.  At one time I was very much afraid to accept Him because I didn't know what might be asked of me in return.  Much to my surprise,   I found JOY, true Joy when I knew that I was no longer alone in my daily challenges.  Jesus LOVES me.  He will never forsake me.  No matter what messes I might get myself into, He will get me through them.  When things go well, we often fail to thank Him for the blessings of the day.  When things don't go the way WE thought they should, we sometimes feel as if He let us down.  The truth is that He has a plan for us, and it's usually not what we had in mind.  Trust God because His plan is always better than whatever we wanted to do.  Have Faith, and please begin each day with an attitude of gratitude, and ask God what He wants you to do today.  

God bless you and may you always find true JOY in your walk with Jesus.

Monday, February 18, 2019

On Our Way to Arrey

There have been some problems along the way on this trip.  We left Quartzsite a day earlier than planned, on Tuesday, the 12th because we wanted to leave ahead of the rain storm expected.  We couldn't make a reservation for either of the Elks Lodges we were hoping to visit (in Tempe or in Chandler), so we tried to get into an RV park in Gila Bend.  They also don't take reservations, but one person told us that if we got there before 11:00 am we could pretty much count on getting a site.  We packed up early and got there by 10:30 but the man at the park said they had only had ONE vacancy and it had already been filled!  We were really disappointed, but we had no choice except to move on.  We called ahead and found a vacancy at the Elks lodge in Casa Grande, so that's where we went.  We had been there before, and we knew it would be dry camping, but the people there were really great.  There was only one other RV there, so we picked a site and got set up.  Unfortunately, we were NOT able to get a TV signal from that site.  The next morning the other camper left, so we packed up and moved to the site he had, and we were able to get the TV signal perfectly!  We had planned to leave there on Friday morning,but  they were going to have a Valentine's day party on Friday night, so we stayed over until Saturday morning.  They had a really nice dinner and a country music band for dancing.  It was very, very nice, and the decorations were pretty too.  
The picture on the right was the centerpiece on the tables, with a ting floating candle in it.  Very cute.

This is a drink special they called a Bubble Kiss.  It was champagne and cranberry juice, and it was quite delightful.
Here is a picture of the band that played there that night.  We had not danced in many months, and although we had a wonderful time dancing that night, the following day we felt the "agony of de-feet".
 On Saturday morning we were taking our time packing up to leave because we only had about 50 miles to go to get to the park we are in now........however, Saturday was the beginning of Casa Grande Cowboy Days, and the lodge parking lot was filling up with motorcycles and riders.  One of them advised Jim that if we wanted to leave we should hurry and go before 11 am or we would be stuck there for several more hours.  We hurried and got out of there by 10:30 am, and after stopping to get gas, we got here to this park in Marana before noon.  This park has been inundated with rain for several days, so it is rutted and muddy but we got a site that was "high and dry".  After we got here, we found out that the water is not drinkable because of high levels of nitrates, so yesterday we drove to a Wal-Mart in Tucson and bought two cases of bottled water.   We are staying here until tomorrow, because today it's snowing in Bowie, which is where we are going next.  We are trying to stay ahead of the bad weather, so we will go to Bowie on Tuesday, then on Wednesday to a park called Dream Catcher RV Park in Deming for one night.   We prefer to stay a few nights before moving on, but we would like to get to Arrey on Thursday, and get settled in before the next storm gets there.....predicted on Friday.  

Our hearts, and our prayers go out to the many people who have suffered so much with the unusually bad weather that has occurred across much of this country recently.  Power outages during freezing cold weather, flooding with buildings collapsing, and major mud slides are just a few of the problems people have had to deal with in many areas of the country.  This is a street up in 
Silent Valley. My dear friend 
Diane Hubert took this 
picture showing how bad it was last week.
The picture on the right shows the road washed out on CA highway 243 going up above Silent Valley to Idyllwild.    Many places in California have had mud slides in the areas that were on fire just a few months ago.  Last night they had to close the Grapevine because of snow and ice. The Grapevine is Interstate 5 which runs north and south through California all the way to Washington state. Travelers were stranded in their cars overnight in the cold.  We have been inconvenienced by all this rain, but we are reminded to put things in proper perspective, and pray for those who are in much worse conditions than we are.  
We are very happy that we will be in Arrey soon.  The owner/manager Janice is a dear friend to us.  She is doing things to make the park a better place to live.  She even has a beautician who comes there once a month for anyone who would like her services.
Janice looks really great, and is happy with the trim 
and blond highlights she 
got from the beautician.  
Wow!!!   It was so chilly the other day that Millie had to wear socks to keep her feet warm.  So cute!
On Valentine's Day Pastor Paul sent this to us.  It was so nice and I wanted to share it with all of you. Almost everyone I know is familiar with John 3:16, but this is such a great way to look at it.  It's easy to forget this message, so we all need to be reminded of it.  When times seem to be at their worst, God has a plan for us.  I've said it before, and most surely I will say it again:  please remember that we are where we are because this is where God wants us to be.  He has a purpose for everything that happens, so if you are confused or afraid, please don't assume everything is out of control.  Just because WE don't understand His plan does not mean He isn't in control.  Instead of being afraid, or depressed, please remember John 3:16 and know that He loves us, and He will lead us through whatever troubles we are facing today.  

Have a good day, and keep the Faith.  Stay warm and dry.  Watch out for the dangers of this bad weather, and if you have friends, family or neighbors that are shut-ins, please check on them to make sure they are OK.  Thank you and  good bye until next time.  Be happy!  😊😊😊

Tuesday, February 5, 2019

Still in Quartzsite, Arizona

I'm sorry it has been so long since I last posted to this blog, but it seems like there is always so much to do here in Quartzsite.  It has been pretty chilly much of the time since we arrived here, so I thought this cartoon suited to be here.  We had a wonderful and productive time in Palm Desert, getting the oil changed on all the vehicles and a new battery for the RV.   
These are a couple of colorful RVs we saw in Palm Desert while we were there.  

Our drive out to Quartzsite was uneventful, which is just how we like it!  We have a nice site and got set up without any problems.  We noticed that many campers here have a tall free-standing antenna that gives them several channels of TV viewing, so we asked them about it.  We ended up buying one which stands 22 feet tall (the pole is in 5 foot segments so we can take it down for storage and travel).  With it, we get about 10 channels on the TV in the bedroom, including the local news and weather!  The front TV has our satellite programming from California.  The next question will be will it work when we get set up in New Mexico????

 Sadly, the morning after we arrived here, I was informed that my beloved sister Donna had passed away in her sleep the day before.
This is the last picture I have of her.  It was taken a couple weeks before she died.  We took Donna and George out to lunch at a cute little place in Beaumont to celebrate their 56 wedding anniversary.  In this day and age, a marriage lasting that long is quite an amazing accomplishment.  There aren't many who can commit to each other, and honor each other like that.  I loved her dearly and will miss her terribly, but I am happy that she is in Heaven with our Lord Jesus, and with mom and dad.  In her last months she had been having hallucinations and delusions that were very upsetting to her.  George was kind and patient with her, and he took wonderful care of her.  I am very thankful that she had him all these years.  Rest in Peace Donna.

 Since being here we have visited all of the vendors on Main Street,and those in the Tyson Wells Marketplace and during the RV Show week, we shopped in the Big Tent.  Naturally I got myself some more owls!  I got some owl jewelry and a very beautiful owl spinner.  
On Main Street we saw these:
The bear is a local attraction in a store that sells silver and turquoise jewelry.  And the world's largest belt buckle is in front of the same store.  
In Tyson Wells we saw this little camper:
 It stood beside its owners space where he was selling his wares.  And of course Jim had to stop to visit his little buddy again this year.

This jewelry seller wanted to make sure nobody got any ideas about stealing his merchandise.
In all we did have a nice time shopping and chatting with vendors.

Much to my amazement and total delight, our dear friends Diane & Jim Hubert decided to drive out here to spend a day with us.  They brought their adorable little Chihuahuas, Lucy and Daisy with them, and our furry kids were happy to see their little friends.  We were having such a great time together after one day and night that I persuaded them to stay a second night with us.  It was a fantastic visit and we are so blessed to have such wonderful friends.  They made it back to Silent Valley safely on Saturday, despite the rainstorm with terrible winds.  Praise God for their safe travels.  Their visit was the highlight of our month here!

This week we are "taking care of business" and getting ready to begin our travels east.  We had hoped to spend a couple days at the Tempe Elks lodge, but they are pretty full, so we might have to dry camp at the Elks in Chandler before we move on to Marana to stay at a campsite there for five days.  After that we will spend three nights in a campground in Bowie, then on to Arrey.  

We had expected, in a few more years, to be retiring to a permanent site in the RV Park in Arrey, but now it looks like that will not be our future after all.  Last night the owner of that park was chatting with me by text messages.  She said that she is filling up with people who want to make the park their permanent home.  Her park is almost full and still has people on a waiting list for a permanent site.  She said there are several other parks in the area that can accommodate us when we are ready to stop traveling.  So I guess we will spend our time in Arrey looking for a new retirement home.  I was pretty upset about it last night, but then I remembered that the Lord is and always will be in charge.  All things happen for a reason, and we must trust that everything will be as it should be.  Praise God we will find out where He wants us to be.

That's all for today, so I will close now and wish you all the very best God has in store for you.  Remember that you are where you are supposed to be and all things work according to His great plan for us.