The Cabin down Below

****I have no clue why my photos won’t center and quite honestly, I don’t care. I have no WIFI and am running off my phone hotspot and transferring the pics from phone to laptop was not fun.****

01/28/2022 Holy cannoli, where has this month gone? It’s not been my favorite so I’ll be glad when it goes the hell away. Far away.

We did have a great snowstorm and the boys had an absolute blast playing in it. We got about 6″ total, the boys weren’t sure what to think at first but once they started running they were snow dogs. I picked snowballs (thinking of you Cathilee) out of their toes every time we came in. The great thing was no more mud. Except after the snow melted we had 3 days of absolute downpours. The mud was atrocious.

Bill was working in the shop insulating the ceiling and I was bored as hell, filling my Amazon shopping cart.

Up on the hill
So many cool shapes
It was a snowy morning
They could be sled dogs, especially Max
Searching for deer poop
It was such a fun experience for the dogs.

During all the snow, Bill wasn’t feeling very good, felt like he was coming down with something. By the 30th he was pretty much down for the count. On Jan. 3rd (my bday) he got tested for Covid and was positive. They told him to go home and rest, drink liquids, etc. Here we are stuck in a tin can, weather is 10 degrees, furnace was not working but we had space heaters. After about a week he was so miserable he went back to the hospital, they told him the same thing, didn’t test him at all. He came back home and went back to bed. I was forcing fluids, had him on black seed oil, Vit D and C and Quercitin with Zinc and Ivermectin, I too was taking the same. I wasn’t feeling great either and was so worried who would care for the dogs if I got sick.

On the 12th I said, we’re going to the hospital. It’s 8 min away. I called the ER while we were sitting outside of the entrance and told them what was going on, they Covid tested him then checked his Oxygen levels and they were low enough that they put him in a wheelchair and wheeled him off. They said they would call me. I, of course, had 3 dogs with me and Highway was in his crate in Walt. We waited and waited. I decided to go home and wait for the call. The Dr. called me and said he had covid pneumonia. F%#k. We are not vaccinated and don’t come at me with any of that, our bodies, our choice. We still stand by our decision. FYI: Many of the nurses at the hospital are NOT vaccinated. They do not require it at this small hospital. Our bodies, our choice. He was being admitted. I of course was a nervous wreck.

The day after Bill was admitted I was feeling really awful, totally worn out. My sweet friend Andee and her husband Joel drove up from Tennessee and brought me all kinds of food and an air mister that sanitizes the air. They took my propane tanks, got them filled for me, helped me load the other 3 dog crates in Walt, and headed back home.

I called my Doc to be seen and he said to go get tested and they would call me with results. I was back in Walt with the dogs when they called and said I was negative and to come in to see the Doctor. I went in, he checked me and sent me for a CBC. I got the blood work done and went back to the Dr. office. He came in and said my bloodwork was excellent, as good as a teenager. They gave me a Vitamin B shot and sent me home.

That night and the next day I was having chest pains. The Dr said go to the ER. I get to the ER, call them, they come and test me, negative again. So they took me in for a chest Xray, ECG and bloodwork. Bloodwork was once again fine, my heart was healthy and lungs were clear. The ER Doc asked me if I was stressed. I told him what was going on and he gave me a scrip for an anti-anxiety med that I still have not filled. I guess knowing I wasn’t having a heart attack calmed me enough that the pains went away. Odd what the mind can manifest.

I’m back at good old Walt, using space heaters to stay warm and the water stopped. No running water. I thought it would thaw in a day when it warmed up. No such luck. I called my neighbor and he came up and did everything he could, still no water. Not a good situation. After a few days, I said screw this $hit and called the only motel in town. They said they accepted pets, $15.00 for each pet. I didn’t mention 4. I loaded what I thought we would need, dog food, warm clothes, leashes, my pillow, blankets to cover the beds and set off to the motel. I went into registration to check in, I looked like a fishwife, covered in dog hair, don’t recall when I last washed or combed my hair. I told them I had called about a room with pets. They asked how many and, being me, I can’t lie. I said 4. She said “Oh we can’t have 4 dogs in a room.” I said I would rent 2 rooms. She said no. I started to cry and told her my situation, I offered her a $500.00 dollar deposit. I promised her my dogs were well behaved, they would chew nothing nor go to the bathroom in the room. She took pity on me, bless her, and charged me a ridiculous amount for 3 nights. I had somewhere warm with running water. The IGA grocery was right next door. I ran there to get some take-out deli chicken and a few other things. When I was in line at the deli I looked down and realized I had a damn dog leash wrapped around my neck and it had a green poop bag (empty) tied to the handle. I just didn’t care.

While I was moving the dogs into the room, and not knowing this beforehand, when the door closes, it locks. I was locked out. I ran to the office and got a key, by then the owner was giving me the “LOOK.” I set stuff on the floor as I was moving in and Gringo ate most of my chicken. Damn dogs.

Once I was settled I couldn’t get the TV to come on. Not having cable since 2003, I was looking forward to it. The box was on but not the TV. I called the owner and he said he would be down so I hustled all 4 dogs into the car before they terrified him. He got the TV on and mumbled something as he left, not sure but I think he called me a pain in the ass. I let the dogs back in and sat down and cried.

That night we got 6 more inches of snow. Luckily there was a big field between the 1* motel from hell and the Cumberland River.

It was nice to let the boys run.
The motel from hell.
The Nordstrom’s of Kentucky. There is one on every corner.

I ran into the Dollar General to get some juice and dog treats, I was covered in dog hair, my hair was a rats nest, I had on no bra. I totally looked homeless. The customer in front of me knew the clerk and they were chatting as I was impatiently waiting. The clerk said he could play lead guitar but he wasn’t great. The customer left, called the clerk, Bobby, by name and said to call. As I was checking out, the clerk asked me IF I WANTED TO BE IN A MUSIC VIDEO. Was it to portray the homeless in Portland or the down and out destitute souls in LA? I laughed and said, no thanks. Really, why does this shit happen to me?

My friend from high school, Sandra, messaged to see how Bill was and suggested a VRBO. I thought nobody would rent to someone with 4 dogs. But I looked anyhow, searching for places that accepted pets. I found 3 and messaged them all my story and ridiculous situation. The first one that allowed dogs replied and said OK, but was charging me an arm and leg for the dogs plus $145.00 cleaning fee. The second lady messaged me and said, no problem, she didn’t care how many dogs I had, just asked that I clean up their poop, which I would normally do anyhow. She said she lives about 2 hours away and her husband is having back issues and they’ve not been able to get here. The place wasn’t cleaned since the last renters. I booked it until Feb 3.

My little Cabin down the Road.

I checked out of the motel Tuesday morning, loaded all 4 dogs and went back to the RV. I grabbed a few more things I needed, like dog food and a crate for the howler, and then drove the 40 minutes to this cabin. I found it easily, situated on 2 acres, a few homes around but all unoccupied. This is a seasonal area for fishermen. Not a soul around, no traffic on the road in front. Once inside, I washed the sheets so I would have clean bedding and organized the stuff I brought.

This place in not well insulated, it’s mainly used in the spring and summer. The window A/C units are still in the windows, drafty as an outhouse on a cold winter’s night. I have them packed with towels and blankets to help keep the heat in and hopefully reduce her heating bill. I will say that the heaters they have here work great!

I had an OCD urge on Thursday and started cleaning. I emptied the silverware drawer, it was a total mess. I imagine the last renters were guys and we all know they’re not particular where they put things. I washed everything in it, dried the utensils, and rearranged it. Washed all the large cooking utensils and put them in a separate drawer. Then I organized all of the upper cupboards. While doing that I found the real junk drawer. It was filled with pieces of copper tubing, plumbers tape, nails, tacks, screws. I cleaned that all up and organized it. I wish I had a label maker. IYKYK

The day I arrived the dehumidifier was running. I thought that was odd, and then started shocking myself and the dogs all day long, the air was so dry. Bill said to unplug it. I turned it off and unplugged it and noticed the screen on the front looked dirty. I got on YouTube and found instructions to clean the filter. O. M. G.

Can you even imagine??? Happy I could clean it for them but as windy as it is and with all the trees and leaves and pollen, it will be dirty again in no time.
Spotless, the whole unit looks brand new now.
The kitchen
Definite fisherman decor. I covered the fabric couch because I didn’t want dog hair on it.
This little cabin has small windows with blinds on them, not a lot of light. I couldn’t get the light over the sink to come on when I was cleaning (figured out yesterday it comes on when the bathroom light is turned on.) I moved a floor lamp for more light and the base disintegrated on the floor. I already have a replacement light purchased and delivered.
I keep waiting for these fish to sing when I walk by,
My friend Danielle said that someone in her household, not mentioning names, was arrested at Dale Hollow Lake. I’m sure there is more to this story..

The dogs are happy here, lots and lots of deer poop. It’s very hilly so it’s kind of hard to navigate to look for the frozen extra-large tootsie rolls the dogs leave. With all the leaves, the piles are hard to find unless they are fresh and still steaming. Sorry, TMI.

side yard
turkey tail fungi
Side of cabin, I’m sleeping in the room to the right with sliding glass door.
Huge stumps
Gringo managed to rip his toenail off. It bled like a stuck pig. I got the bleeding stopped and wrapped it for a day. All of a sudden he acted like I cut his stupid foot off. His nails are long, he hates his feet touched, plus they’re black and very hard to cut. I’m just going to have the vet do his.

Tuesday and Wednesday were uneventful, I had to run to the store to get batteries for the remote, only to find there is nothing worth watching on 300+ channels. So happy we don’t waste money on cable. We got more snow again and the dogs were tearing up and down the hills, exhausted by the time we came in. It got really cold down to single digits a few nights.

On Thursday eve Barrio wanted out. He’s on a low dose of prednisone and it makes him pee often. I grabbed my windbreaker and the spotlight and took him out. He didn’t pee, he must have heard something and wanted to sniff. I said, let’s go back in, I’m freezing. It was around 15-19 degrees. THE DOOR WAS LOCKED. WE WERE LOCKED OUT. I didn’t have gloves, car keys or my phone. There was not a light anywhere in the distance, pitch black. I panicked. Then I gathered what few wits I had left and checked all the windows, they were locked, except 1. The one that the Dish TV cable goes through. I managed to get the broken storm window up without the glass falling out and shattering. Then there was the screen. I pulled and pulled and couldn’t get it out. By now my fingers were frozen sticks of flesh. I grabbed that screen with every ounce of strength I could muster and bent the living shit out of it, but I got it out. The window was open about 5″ but it wasn’t enough to crawl in. I stood on the chair and shook and pulled and pushed that window and it finally went all the way up. If I was crying by then, the tears were frozen droplets. I managed to crawl in the window without screwing up the TV wires. Opened the door, let Barrio in, then closed the window again. I am so glad Barrio was the only one outside with me, he knew something was up and didn’t leave my side, Highway would have been gone in a heartbeat.

My favorite window in the world.
No security here, good thing I have 270# of snapping snarling dogs with me.

I messaged the homeowner the next day and told her I cleaned and did all the laundry that was here, also told her I broke the lamp (not my fault, but it broke on my watch) and I said I would pay to replace the screen. She freaked out that I was locked out, said she cared nothing about the screen at all and was so glad I got back in. She also offered me another 10 days here for free if I needed it. I was overwhelmed by the kindness.

So when we sold out house in AZ in literally a day and the guy wanted in ASAP, we bought the demon Walt. We talked to builders in KY and TN and found they were 12-18 months out and the prices were changing daily, going up of course. We looked at houses for sale and made offers on a few and there were bidding wars, it was ridiculous. That’s what the guy who bought our home in AZ was running into. He offered us way more than we paid just so he wouldn’t have to deal with a bidding war with other potential buyers. The same thing was happening with bare land. I found this property the day it was listed, we made an offer and it was accepted. The seller had remorse, felt he could have gotten more and he sure could have. So we bought and paid for the land ASAP. Then we started looking at manufactured homes. The house we had in Everson was a manufactured home, it was quite large 2700+ sq’. We didn’t want something that big but decided to go that route. In August we sent a down payment and were told the house would be done by Nov 15th. I wrongly assumed I could live with that. Nov 15th came and went. Then they said the house would be out of the factory Dec14th. It was a day or so later but they only had enough trucks/drivers to deliver half of the house. We waited several weeks for the other half to be delivered. Bill was in the hospital when it arrived at the dealer’s, 2 hours away. We had to go inspect the house and sign papers. Some papers needed notarized. So on the 27th I put Highway in a crate (he’s a car howler) and loaded the boys in the car for the drive. We got there, I inspected it, saw small things I didn’t like but Bill can fix them. We went inside to sign papers and at that point, he told me their notary quit last week. WHAT?? I had made arrangements with the hospital notary to do Bill’s but not mine.

I got the papers signed and took the ones needing a notary and the dogs and I left for Burkesville, 2 hours away. On the way home I was telling Bill that he would need to sign quite a few papers. He actually asked me to STOP AND GET A CLIPBOARD so he had something to lean on. I said NO, in very colorful language.

I got to the hospital, no answer at the notary’s desk so I drove to the property, about 8 min away and let the boys run. I called her again and she answered and said she would be waiting. I loaded the boys and we went back to the hospital.

I asked if she would notarize mine also and she said sure, She took Bill’s papers and a nurse was “helping” him. They missed several signatures. So the notary had to go back. I checked them again and he still missed one, she went back again. She then notarized my sigs, I checked them several times and sure hope to the high heavens I didn’t miss anything. Just as I was getting in my car to go to the Post Office to overnight the docs, my phone rang. It was the guy from the dealer. He said the man who delivers the homes was in my area and wanted to see the site, could I meet him there. I said, sure. The boys and I drove back out to the property and waited for him to come. He said the site was perfect, no power lines, nothing in the way, no problem, he can deliver as soon as they say so. I followed him down the driveway and he stopped at the bottom to measure the distance between 2 trees and the bank and said it was going to be close. I thought the trees were our neighbors. I left there, went to the Post Office, overnighted the documents, and came home. I was exhausted.

Bill said the trees are ours, the neighbor said they were. The dealer called this morning and asked if we could get them taken down. I called Aaron and he said he can do it Sunday so I hope this means the house gets delivered this coming week.

I just got off the phone with the Dr, who said Bill is doing excellent, no longer has Covid and should now be immune. He still plans to release him next week. Now I’m praying for a house to take him to instead of this drafty cabin.

Keep your fingers crossed for us, this has been a $HIT month, it has to get better.


Let it snow

12/01/2021 Happy December. I can’t believe it’s almost the end of 2021. On Dec 5, it will be a year that Bill and Highway arrived from Roatan. Seriously it seems like months. Crazy how the older I get, the faster the time goes by.

We are getting close. The house should be finished by the end of this month and we are hoping to be in by New Year, Christmas I doubt will happen. Regardless, I have started buying stuff that we will need. Remember, we brought NO furniture.

There is a store in town that has some antiques, I found a cool bench and 2 dressers there. One dresser we will refinish because it’s gorgeous solid oak, the other is maybe cherry but not in great shape. We’ll fix it up and I plan to paint it for the guest room. I decided that old furniture restored is much better than most of the furniture available today. The dressers both have dovetail drawers.

Not sure if I’ll paint this or not, but it’s for the porch. We’ll make a cushion for it.

I’m still buying glassware, although I told myself I was done. HAH. I found these pieces at different stores and some on Etsy.

I plan to use these too.
All the colors.
It was 25 degrees the other morning. It made for a nice crispy crunchy walk. The dogs are super invigorated in the cold weather.
So pretty.
I hope we get snow!
The following photos I took up on the hill where we always walk. I used google lens to figure out what they are. They’re called ice flowers. The “flowers” are actually ice extruded from the stems of certain plant species. They only last until the sun comes up. They occur when the air temp reaches freezing before the ground is frozen. Water in the plant escapes through tiny cracks in the plants and then freezes in gorgeous strange shapes.

This is what the forest floor looks like.
These are so cool, sorry for all the photos but I’ve never seen anything like this before. Obviously, I’ve not been in the woods early enough.
This may be a type of epimedium, growing wild in the fields.
Horse chestnuts
This is from a Honey Locust.
I really don’t know, but this may be a type of wild Tradescantia?? These are all in our fields.
Bill got a new toy. It has a brush hog/mower, bucket and a box blade. He’ll use this often here.
The dogs know we have a mouse or mice. Highway already got one outside and I couldn’t get him to drop it. Bill tried too but the damn dog ate it rather than give it up. Disgusting. We have traps set under the drawers but these are very smart mice. I hate the damn RV.
They spend a lot of time on the bed looking out the window. We’ll never have nice bedding.
I’ve been on a roll making cards, up to 40 so far. I am so looking forward to having a scrap room again!
The other morning Bill walked the dogs with me and it’s a damn good thing he did. This is the first I have ever seen chem trails out here.
They were everywhere and we are 2 hours from any major airport.

This particular morning Gringo caught the scent of something and he took off towards the top of the hill with Barrio and Max (who has lost 15# in 3 months) hot on his trail. Highway was with us. When we got up to where we saw them running Bill said, “Oh Shit.” The 3 boys had jumped over the 3′ wire and barbed wire fence. Barrio and Max were right on the other side. Gringo was nowhere to be seen. We couldn’t find any holes in the fence to get them through so Bill crawled over it and handed the dogs to me. Before we had the 2 over Gringo came back. They couldn’t jump back over because there was a steep hill behind them. These dogs will be the death of me.

One morning I got up and as usual, was going to let the boys out until Bill said we had a problem. The neighbors’ cows had wandered into our field. The cows are not the issue, the way the dogs react is the issue. Bill went to get Mike and he and Bill got the cows back in the right field.

Mooooooo. The cows are fascinated by the dogs and vice versa. Maybe we should let them be friends.
We got a small turkey. Since the oven has never been used, we decided to cook this on the grill. I DO NOT want to clean an oven in the RV.
This is called spatchcocking. Bill cut the spine out and flattened it. It took about 1hr 45 min to cook a 10# bird. It was really good.

We were going to invite Mike (the guy with the cows next to us) but we weren’t sure it would be good and had no clue how long it would take. Bill took him a heaping plate of food later on that day.

Tomorrow I am going to the metropolis of Bowling Green. They have a 72 vendor antique flea market and many other stores that I want to go to. I should probably spend the night so I can shop for 2 days but my car only holds so much.

Today was the first day Bill and I left here together in 3 months. He wanted to run to Albany electric and I wanted to ride along. The dogs knew and Highway started panic howling like a banshee getting an enema. It is not pretty and I can not stand it. We put a crate in the RV and put him in it and we took the other 3. They were really good as usual. After we left Albany we drove out to Dale Hollow Lake. It is so much larger than I thought it would be, 28,000 acre lake. I would like to go back and spend a weekend there. Better yet, get a pontoon boat and enjoy it as often as possible.

But first, A HOUSE.

Wishing you all a very Merry Christmas. XOXO

Yucky sucky Kentucky


11/03/2021  Kentucky has me questioning why. Why Kentucky? Why Burkesville? Why 31 acres? I can question it until the cows come home and it’s not going to change.

The weather has been dreadful. It’s worse than Washington weather. It rained so much for 3 days straight I didn’t even want to get out of bed. But I did, and as soon as the rain stopped I grabbed the dogs and we went for their morning walk. Wasn’t it me who was looking forward to having all of this property SO I WOULDN’T HAVE TO WALK THE DOGS??? Who am I? Every morning, walking down the driveway with the mist rising off the blades of grass and masses of prickly bushes, I feel like I’m taking the walk of shame. Then there are the 16 muddy paws that I wash a minimum of twice a day, if it’s muddy. I broke down and bought a paw washer. I really didn’t think it would work but it really does once I figured it out. The boys are so good, they stand in line and wait for their turn. Once washed, I dry their paws and put them in Walt.

I fill it with warm water because it’s been so dang cold here.

We went a whole month waiting for Aaron to come back and finish the shop. Finally this Tuesday he came back and today, Friday, the shop is done. Bill has to put the overhead garage door up yet and then add lights and some heat in there. I think we’ll move Walt down there and hook into our new septic, that way we’ll be close to the garage and the washer/dryer and the big fridge. Plus, the boys will have their chairs. We’ll see, right now it’s so dirty in there I really don’t want the dogs laying down on that floor.

The front of the shop. Bill has the overhead garage door just about up. There is also a walk-in door on the right.

The boys are really loving their beds from Chewy. These are a much better idea than a bed with a cover and foam inside of it. We had some made on Roatan with removable covers and it seemed every week I was vacuuming them and then washing and drying the covers. Then there was the struggle of fitting the foam back in the cover.

We’re either the epitome of Sanford and Son or the Beverly Hillbillies, not sure which.
Gringo in front, Barrio in the back.

It seems this blog has become a dog blog. I apologize and promise that will change when something worth writing about happens.

I took a trip to Glasgow KY again and stopped at some antique stores. I’ve decided I want to collect vintage colored glass goblets, vases or bowls. I stopped first at a place called Shabby Chic. I got Bill a great wooden stool, it’s old and painted but super sturdy and I found a few glass pieces there to start my collection.

This was in Shabby Chic. I have no idea WTH this guy is doing.
He’s certainly not rowing.
And she looks like Megan Fox. So weird.

A little further in town I found another place and bought a LOT of pieces there. I also found some on Etsy and ordered them. This week I went back to Glasgow again and bought 7 more. I’m like an addict, I can’t stop.

I’m loving the different colors. I have a shelf in the kitchen by the window and a glass door that will get a lot of light. That’s where my mind envisions them.
These are from my second trip to Glasgow.
I bought these at a huge antique mall in Somerset. I could have spent hours in there. I think I’m done buying these for now.

The only thing I take photos of anymore is our property when I am walking the boys. We usually leave the house around 8:15 or as soon as the fog lifts or the rain stops. We’re gone for 35-45 min every morning.

This is their favorite spot, lots of deer POOP. Dessert, yums. I asked the vet if it was bad for them to eat and he said no. Good thing because I can NOT stop them. It’s everywhere. Those deer need some Immodium.
The pond. Bill cleared a path down to it so we go there every morning then cut through the field to go home.
Reminds me of the movie Werewolf in London.
This pic was taken on the hill of the field I walk the boys to daily.
Beautiful cold mornings
Highway thinks this is a tennis ball. It’s really an inedible Osage orange.
The long road home.
Searching for dessert.

On Monday, after the rainy weekend, I walked the boys in the field like we do every day. Later in the afternoon, the sun came out so I took them to the field up the hill by Walt. We have taken them up there one other time before. There is a power line that runs through there, otherwise, it’s really beautiful, with great views. It’s a good hike up there, steep uphill. It was slippery from all the rain.

This looks down on our neighbor’s home.
Such a pretty field, there are a lot of ferns growing up here. I think I’ll dig some up for around the house.
Nice and green and feathery. I’ll see what they look like in another month before I dig some up in the spring.
On one side the steep hill goes down to our field, the other side goes down to the main road.
View of Walt from the bottom of the hill where I walked the boys.

On Tuesday morning I decided I would walk them up to the powerline hill, then, we would walk to the other place where we usually go. We were all on top of the hill, they were sniffing around, Gringo caught the scent of something and took off running down the steep hill. Highway Barrio and Max followed. I started yelling for them and was trying to climb down the bank to see where they went but I couldn’t see them. After yelling for a few minutes Highway, Barrio and Gringo came back. No Max. Max ALWAYS comes when I call him. He didn’t this time. I freaked and called Bill. He said, “Oh shit, a coyote just ran through the field from up that way.” I was screaming (probably like a banshee) for Max, nothing. I took the other 3 down to Walt and put them in their crates and hiked back up the hill. Bill was walking through the field and climbing up the hill. No Max. By now I was in full panic mode. I went down that steep mountain screaming for Max, no Max, no barks, nothing. Bill hiked up the side of the mountain and came back down, still no sign of Max. I called our neighbor and told him, he got on his ATV and went looking. I got in the car and drove up and down the main road. No Max. I came back to the RV, got Gringo and we hiked up the mountain again. We kind of traversed it, it’s so steep and there are way too many trees, it’s hard to walk. There are downed trees, briars and thick brush. I fell once on my butt on the side of the hill. At this point Bill was in the car again looking on the main road. Gringo and I made it down the hill, coming out of the woods I was so exhausted I could barely lift my feet, I tripped and fell flat on my face. Gringo was freaked out and came over and was nosing at me and barking. Once I got up, we followed the woods alongside the field. We were almost back to the RV when I saw fur by the RV. Then Gringo took off running to Walt. MAX WAS BACK!! I called Bill right away. Max was gone over 1 and 1/2 hours. He’s never done that before. He wasn’t hurt, wasn’t covered with briars, no clue where he was. I washed his feet and put him inside, cleaned the other 3 dogs’ feet and we all went inside and snuggled on the bed. Max kind of flopped on me, like he was saying, I’m so glad I found you. Bill and I were on the verge of a breakdown. Having something happen to Max would be more than I could bear. If he could only talk.

Saturday was a special day for me. Two friends I have not seen since High School came to visit us. Sandra still lives in PA and Charlie is 90 min south of us in Tennesee, Sandra is visiting with him for a few weeks. So, so happy they came to see us. Sandra gave us 2 jars of canned whole tomatoes and Charlie brought Bill an industrial fire extinguisher for the shop. That was an awesome idea, it’s nice to have but we hope we never need it.

Charlie, Sandra and me. (Max and Barrio too)

I’m pretty sure I jinxed the possibility of being in the house by Christmas because I bought Christmas tree ornaments. I know it’s my fault but even if I sent them back, the bad juju is already here.

I drove to Somerset on Tuesday looking for furniture for the house. I follow so many people on Instagram who are interior designers and they have ALL commented that the wait period for furniture is MONTHS. I thought I better get shopping. I went to the Ashley furniture store and saw a few things I really liked until the saleslady said 4-6 MONTHS. Are you kidding me? I was headed to TJ Maxx after that and saw a Kemper furniture store. I rerouted, totally upsetting the voice on my GPS. This store had some gorgeous furniture. I found a leather La-z-boy reclining couch and a counter-height dining table with 4 stools. I got 2 more stools for the island in the kitchen so if needed they can be pulled up to the table.

This is a charcoal gray sofa.
I’ve never had a round table before.

Yesterday I was thinking about a buffet/server and that I still need one of them. I noticed in the photo of the table that there was one behind the table. I messaged Shelley at the store and she said yes, she did have one.

This is great because it will pull the kitchen, dining room and living room together.

I told her to add it to my furniture. And get this, they can deliver it ALL next week. Why can I get this sooner than the Ashley furniture? Because it is MADE IN AMERICA. Nothing makes me happier than buying things made in the USA. We are having them hold it for a month or so rather than have it sit in the shop.

Now we just need 3 beds, nightstands and dressers for the bedrooms and we’ll be all set. I think I am going with platform beds so we don’t need to buy box springs. I’ve found a few on Amazon and may order them.

This blog program is giving me fits, I can’t upload photos, I keep getting this error message:

Post-processing of the image failed likely because the server is busy or does not have enough resources. Uploading a smaller image may help. Suggested maximum size is 2500 pixels.

I tried uploading small pics, resizing them all and still, it won’t work. This morning I tried and was able to upload 5 photos, figure that I’m on a roll and am going to close this down and post it while I still can.

I’m going to take the boys back outside for a while before the damn rain starts again. Gorgeous sunny and windy right now.

I hope you all have a great Thanksgiving.

(I really don’t hate Kentucky, I just get so frustrated when it rains and everything is mud and the dogs & I are stuck in this stupid RV. It will all be better once we have a house and a yard.)

P.S. I left the US on Nov 3, 2012, before the time changed, came back in March 2013 and left again Oct 2013. We lived on Roatan for 6 years (Bill for 7) then moved to Az. Roatan and Arizona do NOT change the clocks so this change totally sucks.

Stuck in limbo.

10/4/2021 It was one month on October 1 that Walt and the family pulled into our little slice of paradise. It is gorgeous here, I love the location, not super impressed by the grocery and shopping options but I knew that before moving here. It is what it is.

The guy we hooked up with before arriving has proven to be amazing. There is nothing Aaron doesn’t know how to do. He did the concrete floor for the shop (with Bill’s help) and he and Bill recently completed putting on the metal roof. He actually used a chalk line on the roof to get the nails in a straight line. Both sides of the roof are finished and it looks amazing. They framed in the opening and he has ordered the metal for the gables of the roof. Aaron has a regular door for the shop, we need to order a garage door yet. Timing was everything since my new washer and dryer and freezer arrived the 29th and the roof was completed on the 28th.

Starting the roof
One side almost done.
Both sides are complete. Yes, it is sort of underground. The original owner of the land was using it for a basement/garage and building on top. The side you see is the entrance.

I already ordered my stove, dishwasher and fridge (got the French door type) but decided to order an extra fridge for the closed-in back porch. We had an extra in Everson and it was awesome to keep drinks in and to use when we ate outdoors. I was going to get a white one and cover it in self-adhesive wallpaper but decided on a black one. The fridge was delivered yesterday. Once we get the electricity hooked up, I’ll be able to stock up on some groceries. All of our household things got delivered on Tuesday. The boys were excited to see their chairs.

Their chairs are something they recognize as home.
Bill hadn’t gotten the arm pillows put back in on this chair. We took them out to make them easier to ship. I bought these leather chairs from the guy who I bought the AZ home from. I knew they would be perfect chairs for the boys. They never even tried to get on the new couch, they knew these were their chairs. Bill actually talked about not taking them and I said NO WAY. They are going, they belong to the dogs.
This is one of the trucks, he had 2 crates, the other had one. He had a tough time backing down the narrow drive to the shop. but he made it.

Bowling Green is only an hour away, we spent 2 nights in an RV park there while hurricane Ida passed through. That’s also where Bill took my car for the 60K service. There is a Sam’s Club there, I’ll need to join, there is also a Target, Home Depot, Aldi’s, TJ Maxx and a lot of furniture stores. I’m looking forward to some shopping trips there.

I’ve decided I don’t like Walt. In fact, Walt is pitiful. I FREAKING HATE him. I hate the shower most of all, especially since we have been invaded by stink bugs, (these are the non stink if you squash them but smell awful after being in the vac a day dying) variety but a pest nonetheless. I think I preferred the paper wasps we previously had problems with. Yesterday I sucked up well over 150 of the stink bugs with the vacuum. This morning when I was showering 2 swooped in on me. I had a screaming fit, knocked the damn shower accordion door off the track and had all 3 boys trying to protect me. I also hate the bathroom sink. It has a screen in the drain and that freaks me way the hell out. As do the 2 screens in the double kitchen sink. I hate to empty things like that when tiny pieces of food get in there, that’s the reason I insist on a garbage disposal. I throw all the big pieces of stuff away but the small particles, down the garbage disposal. I can’t tell you what it is that freaks me out so badly but I have to wear rubber gloves to clean the screen drains out and I am internally shrieking the whole time. I would have died in a week if I lived in the Little House on the Prairie.

UPS brought some spray Bill ordered to kill the stink bugs and I do think it’s working. I’ve cleaned up only 20 or so since the boys and I came inside. The boys are all terrified of the vac for some reason. It’s not so bad in a house where they can go to a different room but they don’t have that option here.

It rained for almost a week and we were surrounded by 30 muddy wet acres and 16 muddy wet dog paws. They were getting tired of having their feet washed several times a day. I contemplated boots for them but they’ll lose them and I will spend all of my time looking for them. They were some mighty bored dogs. They put stone on the whole driveway EXCEPT where they were running the dozer back and forth. That meant I had to traverse 50′ of deep slippery mud to get the boys to the stone driveway. That has since been remedied.

UGH. Sticky slippery thick MUD.
Planning on stocking this with fish. not
My poor car.
My friend said it looks like I drove through peanut better then cat litter. She’s right.
Cleaning these several times a day.

Every morning I walk the dogs down the driveway and into the upper field. It’s so beautiful there, I wish we had known about that spot before. That’s what we get for buying property sight unseen. It’s a huge hilly field surrounded by trees. Many of the trees are Osage orange trees and they have the most horrible thorns I have ever seen in my life. I was really worried about the boys stepping on them but so far we’ve been lucky.

Why in the world are there trees like this?

They run all over up there, so much to smell. I recall someone telling me that when you walk your dog don’t allow them to stop and sniff things. That’s not a nice thing to do to a dog. They get so much mental stimulation from sniffing, it’s really important for them to do. These guys must be having a blast. They’re also eating grass, never really had that option before, it’s new to them. I noticed Max had a poop hanging from his butt by a blade of grass. I used a stick and removed it. The things I do for these dogs. They are getting in at least 3 miles a day, probably more. After we return from a walk they are exhausted. A tired dog is a good dog.

All I have to say is, “want to go on the hill?” They know exactly what I mean.
This is the curve of our driveway down to the road.
This is just past the curve headed up. A little over 1/4 mile.
I love the woods.
I think the dogs love it too. It’s the first real freedom they have had.
All the smells.
A Hare’s foot inkcap fungus.
A bowl and doily spider web.
Bearded lichen.
This is their favorite spot.
Walking home.
This has been my view for 6 years. BUTTS,
We were told there used to be a pond on our land. Well, there still is. I found it one day while walking the boys. Aaron said we need to get some trees away from it so the sun can get rid of some of the algae.

We had a full week plus of nice days, then the rain returned. So did the mud. It’s been brutal. Yesterday we noticed a leak in the RV, not sure where the water was coming from. Bill moved the RV from being level to leaning to the side the water was coming in and that seems to have stopped it. It poured last night, thundered and all and no water leaks this morning.

Yesterday the boys were laying on the bed looking out the window and all of a sudden Gringo went crazy. I looked out the window and there was a deer in the lower field. Between the deer and the cows, Gringo may need an intervention. Saturday night Bill was outside talking to his sister on the phone. I had, just minutes before, taken the boys inside. The day had just gone from dusk to dark. He noticed something and looked down and there was a 4′  S N A K E. I am terrified of snakes but still had to go look. It was a big old King snake.

Earlier that night I moved the cooler and there was a frog under it. Highway went after it and it jumped in a dog crate. After I got Highway out of the crate, I got the frog out. I keep telling myself the only reason the snake came up to our area is he smelled the frog. Yeah right.

There are copperheads in the area and they are something I do not want to come across with the dogs. If the dogs had been outside, Highway or Barrio would have killed the snake in seconds. Barrio is all meek and mild but he is a killer. I’ve seen him in action on Roatan with rats and lizards.

Last night it poured, thunder and lightning had the dogs all freaky. Max was squished between the bed and the closet and would not budge. We woke this morning to semi sunny skies so as soon as I drank my cup of tea the boys and I set off for the hill. Afterwards we sat outside, Bill put the other 2 coolaroo beds together for the boys. They will be great to use on the screened in porch, much better than laying on concrete.

They each have one now.

I just picked things up that were outside because it looked like rain and sure enough, it’s pouring again. I heard there was a tornado in Northern Cumberland County late night, flipped a few cars. UGH. Over the rain and all the crap weather.

This is Colt, the 7 year old son of Aaron, the guy we hired to do all the work around here. Colt can drive the skid steer and the excavator, at 7 YEARS OLD. He is a really cool kid.
Coyote poop, most mornings they let a pile in the driveway. The boys each sniff it, then pee on it. BOYS.
Found these 2 lovebirds on the hill, not far from the pond.
No shame in their game, doing some Dirty Dancing. They’re Eastern Box turtles.
I had to shame Bill into taking a pic of me and the boys. Not really the photo I wanted but…
The 3 boys follow me where ever I go, Highway, not so much. He is so stubborn.

This blog has taken way too long to do. We still have no wifi so I have to use my phone as a hotspot and I have limited hotspot data per month. As I told my friend Susan, this blog sometimes feels like a giant albatross hanging around my neck. I sure hope that once we get into the house I’ll have more interesting info to post. As of right now, the only excitement I have is sucking the stink bugs up in my vacuum, swearing at each and every one as I hear the satisfying plunk of them getting sucked up. The joys are endless.

RV living is NOT the life for me.

09/06/2021 Well. Here we are, we made it. We left Casa Grande, AZ on Thursday morning at 9:20. We drove amongst 3 zillion semi-trucks and every time they whizzed by Walt, he shook. Sometimes a lot, enough to blow him off to the berm of the road.

We spent 3 nights in campgrounds in Texas. Damn, that’s a BIIIIG state. I foolishly thought we would be through there in a day. I should have paid attention in geography class. Once out of Texas, we drove through the NW corner of Arkansas. Why is it pronounced Arkansaw? That makes absolutely no sense at all. I’m calling it Ar Kansas. That’s correct, in my mind at least. We spent the next night in Hazen, Ar Kansas. It was a very low-budget campground, they offered nothing. From there we drove to Bowling Green Kentucky. We planned to only spend one night in Bowling Green but Ida paid us a visit so we hung out for another night due to the heavy rain. The KOA had a fabulous dog area, the boys had a great time playing on the playground stuff for dogs. The RV next to us was a year older than Walt but very similar and they were from Az also.

Goodbye Arizona house, you will be missed.
Leaving Avalon, headed to the Interstate.
First stop, somewhere in Az.
Barrio and Max were excellent travel companions. They didn’t talk, want food, have to pee or ask if we were there yet.
This was at a campground. I think Gringo missed me.
New occupation?
He loves it up there, Highway is giving him the side-eye.
This was at the second campground, it was in a sand dunes park.
Reminded me of the Outer Banks.
This was a nice place but no doggie park area.
Highway joins in on the dashboard dancing.
Yay for doggie play areas, they poop much better off-leash.
This boy…
Bill is going to build the boys a playground, they loved it.
My loves, Max, Barrio and Gringo.
Perfect balance.
Hurricane Ida

We got showered Wed. morning, packed up and hit the road, final destination, Kentucky. We made it to our driveway but it was totally grown over with weeds. We blazed a trail with my poor car. It was covered in pollen. We were able to get up so we went back down to the RV and Bill drove that up and I followed in my car. We let the dogs out but didn’t let them wander because the weeds were super high and probably full of ticks.

The better part of the driveway.
Walt got stuck at the top of the driveway. Good thing there were a few piles of stone. Bill shoveled them in and Walt crawled right out.
Max wasn’t having the sunshine.

Bill called Aaron, the guy who was going to clear the road and put in the septic for us and he came right over with a brush hog and cleared the driveway and flattened an area for Walt, then he spread the pile of stones around the area. It is a nice level spot for Walt to sit. We got hooked up to electricity and water and have a temporary septic for the RV.

Just like Green Acres…
Property, we own through the trees and down to the road.
This is all our field, we want to find someone to farm it. They are burning the thorn trees. These trees have 2″ long hard thorns, nasty things. We want all of these trees removed, the dogs could get hurt, they’ll flatten a tire in a swift heartbeat.
Al Fresco dining for the boys.
These limestone rocks were here. They will be used for something.
This is a random building in a random round-a-bout that serves no purpose, there is no traffic. I went to the Mennonite store, then to Burkesville to Ace and to IGA. This is in downtown Burkesville.
This is close to the house.
Nice old barn.
Our driveway.
Max saw his first cow. He was captivated. We walked them on their leashes over to see the cows. We don’t want them over there because of the barbed wire fence. They didn’t see the turkeys, there were at least 5 of them.
The view of Walt from the lower field.

I’m not thrilled with the grocery store option we have. I’ll obviously be making trips to Glasgow to get food, once we have a house. Cooking in an RV is not fun at all. Last night we actually had baked potatoes and chicken but the night before I had black licorice, spicy hot pickles and kettle corn. I have absolutely no desire to cook or wash dishes in this contraption.

I know I shouldn’t complain, so I won’t. This life could be a lot worse. We are on our property, the boys have room to run and we have nothing but blue sky and green trees. And no neighbors, the ultimate gift.

Stay tuned, I’m sure this ride will get exciting.


Hit the road Walt.

08/12/2021 I thought I would hop on here and do a quick update since I’m not sure I’ll be able to post when we get to Kentucky, at least until we get internet on the property.

Things are moving right along. Today was the bittersweet closing of our island home, La Casa de las Olas. The wave house. I’ll never regret moving to Roatan and experiencing that kind of life. I honestly thought I would live there forever but it just was not meant to be. While there, I met some fabulous island people, ones I feel blessed to know and call friends. They are the epitome of the island, they showed me and taught me things most gringos don’t get to experience. My week-long trip to La Moskitia was the most impactful week of my whole life. Being with the people in La Moskitia taught me something I could never learn in any school. I am forever grateful to my BFF on the island, Nidia, for taking me along with her. It will always be the highlight of my years living on the island. I also made gringo friends there, friends I will have for a lifetime. It was a good choice to move there, I’m happy we did it. Our house wasn’t fancy schmancy but it had killer views, a 24/7 strong breeze and it was so peaceful being in the jungle. I’ll miss that, and moving to the damn desert was sure a stark contrast to the dense jungle. I knew the desert house was not a permanent move but I enjoyed living here for the most part. I like sunshine and warm temps but 112 degrees for days on end is too much.

La Casa de las Olas. We lived upstairs, the downstairs was for guests, it was a full apartment. The house was purchased by 2 couples from Texas. They have 6 dogs. It’s the perfect house to live if you have 6 (or 11) dogs.

We have been packing for about a month. It’s almost done. It’s so stressful trying to figure out what we’ll need for the month it takes our stuff to arrive. I’ve pretty much got the pantry empty, next will be to clean out the chest freezer, put it in the fridge freezer and pack stuff in the freezer that we are taking. Not having to deal with furniture is a huge bonus but also daunting, because we’ll have to buy all new furniture, ceiling fans, lighting, plus all appliances. UGH. Yes, it’s fun buying new but it’s also a chore. The closest store will be 45 min away. I know that sounds like not much but here in AZ everything is within 30 min. So easy it’s made me incredibly lazy.

We had boxes in the closet, office, and 3 corners of the halls.  Bill moved them to one place to see how much of the U-Haul trailer it would take up. The visual difference of them all in one place makes the whole move seem less overwhelming.

This was a pile last week.
It’s all in this corner.
Now Bill wishes we had boxes that were all the same size. TOO LATE. I actually have one box that I wrote, I have no clue what is in here.

The house is still a flipping disaster. This too shall pass.

Getting some rays on a 90+ degree day.

We got the exhaust fixed on Walt, he is so much quieter now. Currently he is getting all new tires. The tires on it had a lot of tread left, but they were 10+ years old, sitting in the AZ sun. I am so thrilled we got new tires, it will be much safer to travel cross country with. A blowout on an RV can cause structural damage to the RV. We do not need that. Plus he’ll be pulling a trailer with tools and his motorcycle {that I hate} on it.

We took the boys for a ride in Walt. They all wanted to sit up front. NO WAY, too unsafe for dog and driver. Bill bought a cargo net to keep the dogs back.

This should work, more than likely Highway will have his nose stuck in it at some point.

Once I told Gringo he could, he got up and laid on the couch. Max insisted on sitting by Bill and I kept pushing him back. Barrio was terrified and panted heavily and Highway. Damn Highway. He howled and cried, a very high-pitched consistent whine. It’s like having 7-grade school teaches right behind your head, scratching chalk on the chalkboard. If I were capable of removing a voice box, his would be long gone and donated to dog science.

Barrio and Gringo, who is being chill. Isn’t the upholstery lovely? It’s already covered with a sheet.
The brothers. This photo pretty accurately depicts them. Max is leaving, Barrio is strung out and Gringo is cool. I love these boys so damn much.
Gringo and Max, Barrio on the floor.
Bound and determined to sit there.

I’ve been cleaning up the mess from my gorgeous cactus. When the flowers die and dry up, they fall off. It was a lot to clean up this year because the flowers were so plentiful. If I don’t clean it up it looks like dog poop on the fake grass, and that’s where they all end up. I just noticed today that it is getting more buds so I imagine another flowering session will occur soon. There was a huge mess, I had to take my vacuum out there again. I’m over cleaning the fake grass.

We’re leaving soon to go visit our friend Nick at the rehab center. He’s still trying to regain muscle after his fall and getting second-degree burns. It’s been a long road for him, he’s been in a wheelchair since 1979  but has always been active and very social. Now he can’t do any of that. Heartwrenching. We go every Thursday to visit with him.

UPDATE:Nick is now home and not doing that well. Physically he is unable to do much of anything for himself, like get in and out of bed, cooking a meal, not sure he can shower alone. Mike goes 3 times a day, gets him up and has breakfast with him, he takes him his dinner and eats with him and he goes back later to get him in bed. I just can’t stop thinking about Nick and how his life has changed and it’s not a welcome change.

Ever since 2012, I have worn sandals. I wear sneakers when I walk the dogs, otherwise, it’s usually flip-flops. I’m pretty sure the pair I’m currently wearing are more than 4 years old. I just bought a pair of boots and I am soooo excited. This is what I got.

I can’t believe how excited I am about these boots. We went to Tractor Supply to see what they had, only one pair in my size and they were knee highs, didn’t want that high.

I had a pair of muck boots in WA. but gave them to Kailey before we left for the island. I look forward to wearing them again, while traipsing through the woods with the dogs.

Today after we walked the dogs and kind of woke up (I swear sometimes I am sleepwalking the dogs) we worked in the RV. I finished cleaning the drawers and lined them with cheap-o contact paper. Remember, we are not keeping Walt. We managed to get 95% of the art in the storage under the bed. The freezer in the RV  is Lilliputian. That will be interesting, getting all of my many bags of shredded cheese in the freezer.

UPDATE: 08/20/2021 Walt has new tires and probably will get new batteries this week, Bill has not been successful charging the ones in there. I have a lot of stuff moved into the RV.

The U-Haul crates were delivered this morning and Bill and I completely packed one. I’m dead and I’m sure he is too.

Reassuring that Shrek is helping.
They dropped off 4 crates, we’ll only need 3. They pick the full ones up on the 25th and also take the empty. It will take 3-4 weeks for them to get to Kentucky. By then the shop should be finished and we can unload and store stuff in there.
This pile is gone.
It was monumental.
We packed this clear full, hardly room for a broom.
Should have packed this fool too.
Bill’s damn stupid motorcycle.
Of course, he had to buy a trailer to haul it. UGH.
Max has an affinity for tables. Maybe it’s the food.

Our plan is to leave the day after the closing, hopefully, that is the 25th. We should know by now but we don’t. We’ll drive a longer day the first day because it’s fresh and new. By day 2 we should both be tired of driving and will take shorter days. A lot will depend on how the dogs are doing also. We’re allowing 5 days but may make it in 4. I called the Post Office and asked them to hold our mail until we can get a mailbox up. I asked if Ace was right in town. Arlene’s response was, “oh honey, it’s right at the intersection of the only traffic light in town.” I’m thinking I won’t need GPS in Burkesville.

I’m done for the night, going to chill before I crash. Bill has help loading his tools tomorrow so I can try to organize what’s left in the kitchen.

We plan to leave Thursday morning.

Next time you hear from me I’ll be saying “you all” and have a twang to my dialect.

Like a rolling stone.

7/29/2021 What was I thinking? It’s almost like an out-of-body experience. Moving again. I knew this Arizona gig was not forever, but I did try to ignore that. I like Arizona, I love the conveniences we have living where we do. It’s a nice change from Roatan. But. It’s HOT. DAMN HOT. It’s a dry heat, which means absolutely nothing. It’s a blast furnace. Dry doesn’t even enter into this heat. It DOESN”T MATTER. Wet heat would be better I’m sure. Give me some sweaty under-boob.

So, the house is 3/4 packed. That does NOT include any of Bill’s garage stuff, which is not packed. That just gives me a little anxiety. There are boxes everywhere. When I pack I’m in overdrive, panic mode. I packed all the damn dental floss (bought more) and I had to send the Water Pik back, it flipped the breakers and wouldn’t work. I’ll order another once we get settled. I do miss that thing though, it really cleans your teeth.

I got all the empty boxes in the neighborhood a few weeks ago. I even went to other ‘hoods and picked up boxes. Having other people’s boxes is like a glimpse into their lives, kind of strange.
The master closet looks like this too. This pile has grown considerably.

The boys know something is up. They follow me like they are glued to my ankles. It’s really a pain in the butt, cute as it is, they are a “trip” hazard. I turn around and Highway is sprawled right in my path. ALL DAMN DAY. It’s frustrating.

I have watermelon. They LOVE it and they also love strawberries and blueberries.

So. Bill and I went to Tucson to look at an RV. It’s a 2000 Fleetwood Bounder, 30′ long. It has 2 slideouts which help to make it much bigger for continued (egads) living. It is totally NOT my style but it’s really clean inside. The people took good care of it. The carpet is worn from people getting into the front seats but we’re going to have 4 dogs in this thing. We were gone a long time the day we went to look at it.  On the way home, we could see rain to the north. Highway was locked in our bedroom and the 3 boys were in their crates. There was a thunderstorm while we were away. When we got home, Highway had tried to dig his way out through the carpet, in the master bedroom of a house THAT IS SOLD. The carpet is pitiful at best, Bill did not want to replace it in the 3 bedrooms so we had it cleaned and dealt with the ugliness of it. Now we have to get it repaired. DOGS!

We’ve named the RV Walt because as Olivia pointed out, it is the same kind of RV that Walter White and Jessie Pinkman used to cook meth in Breaking Bad. I guarantee there will be no cooking meth in this. Right now Walt is at the repair shop, there is a bad exhaust leak and we want other stuff checked out before we head east.

Meet Walt.

If we lose some bucks selling it, it was worth it not having to look for an apartment or house rental for a few months. The dogs can run and we can get some things done. Hopefully a garden so I can grow veggies and flowers. I can’t wait. It’s been a long time.

The last visit to the foot doctor happened, he discharged me. My foot is getting better, not great, but better. The Doc thinks the water aerobics and the 50 laps I do with my fins on has helped it get more flexibility. It still hurts, most of the time but I’ve kind of grown used to that. It will be a year until it’s feeling better, if that happens.

I could do more than 50 laps but I get bored, there is nothing to look at. It takes me 15 minutes to do the laps.
And then I float, not every day, but often. I can float for an unusually long period of time without moving. If you noticed in the pic the 2″ white line directly below my top, that is the shaded area that doesn’t get much sun when I sit on a chair in the pool and read.

My cactus has been going crazy lately. I’m not sure why but I have never seen so many flowers. Last year it would have 8 or 10 per day, now there are way more than that. The bees are in pollen heaven.

Hundreds of buds.
Bee Orgy.
Using Google lens, this is identified as a Cereus Jamacaru. It sure looks like it.
This was Saturday morning, flowers galore. I could hear the bees while I was still on the porch. The dogs are keeping away from it.
It’s really a sight to behold.

We had allergy tests done on Barrio and he’s pretty much allergic to every damn thing there is, except Salmon, Turkey and Duck. No peas or flax or rice. It’s really hard and really expensive to find food he can eat. We have stopped cooking liver and veggies. Doing that did nothing to make his skin better so why bother? His armpit is clearing up. Isn’t it odd that it’s just ONE armpit and not both? AND, Gringo has the same thing in the opposite armpit, although not as bad. Max has never had skin issues. It’s very frustrating.

I took Barrio to the vet to chat about his skin. I let the dogs out before I left, then put 3 in their crates and had Barrio jump in the car. We got to the vets and checked in, sat down and I noticed Barrio had a cactus thorn sticking out of his nose. I tried to pull it out but was afraid to tug on it so I had the vet do it. I know exactly where he got that cactus thorn, from the blooming cactus. A dove built a nest in there and it’s within reach of the dogs. She recently abandoned the nest with 2 eggs in it. It was not a wise thought on the doves’ part to nest there. I kept Barrio away as much as I could, he was the only one interested. He’s lucky he didn’t get one in his eye. They hurt and luckily, I’ve never had one break off in my skin.

Crazy dog.

We had a Haboob 2 nights in a row. They were not as bad as the one last year.  Many areas had more severe weather than we did this time.  Then the rains came, they started Thursday night with a wild thunder and lightning storm. The dogs were not thrilled. It rained off and on, sometimes really hard, until Sunday afternoon.

This is the park we usually walkthrough. Totally flooded. Mosquito city.
My fake grass was drowning.
Saturated. The dogs wouldn’t walk on it.
Yep, it p o u r e d,

It’s finally dried up out there and is back to being hot. It’s weird when it rains. In the jungle, it always felt so fresh and clean after a downpour. Here, it is a wet dirt smell that hangs in the air, not a breath of freshness to be seen.

And that’s why we’re headed back to the mountains.

The time we bought land for the dogs.

Just in case you are so inclined, you can sing along with Neil. Click HERE

June 27, 2021  I’m sitting here thinking of everything I have to get done in the next 60 days. August 27th is the last day in the Arizona house. I’ll more than likely begin making to-do lists for the next several weeks.

Let me first say, it’s not that I don’t like neighbors, I just don’t like the fact that they live next to my house, on both sides, in front, and in back. I never feel alone at my pool because there are 3~ 2 story homes towering over me. I can see them, so they’re close. I prefer to not see another house, I just want to see woods and green and sky. Our neighbors are very nice as are the friends we have made here, we will miss them. It was a great easy place for me to live alone for a few months, that turned into a year. It just was not the best for the dogs, not at all.

I am looking forward to being able to walk the dogs in the woods. They won’t know what to think. I am so excited for them to see snow too, Barrio will probably be afraid of it. Change is good. It helps that these dogs are so chill when it comes to change, it will all be for the best.

Land starts to the left of the white route sign at the top and follows the road and goes west. Burkesville, KY.
Entrance to property
View going up the driveway
our field
The building that will be Bill’s shop
Almost 40X60. Close enough to the size the shop was in Everson.

I can not wait to be in the woods again. We left 28 acres in Everson for the jungle in Roatan. The jungle was gorgeous, simply an amazing place to live. If you have not seen the video of our island house, click HERE. It was a very secluded home, despite the fact there was a house down the hill from the entrance to our driveway, we couldn’t see them and they couldn’t see us.  Leaving there and moving here, I feel like I’m in a fishbowl. I don’t like it. Nor do I like the fact that my dogs can’t bark here, I try to keep them quiet because “neighbors.”

We really lucked out with the selling of the AZ house. Bill met a lady at the gym and after a few weeks they started talking. She’s a realtor and he mentioned that we were hoping to sell our place. She was interested in knowing more so Bill asked if she would give us a suggested selling price for the house. She said sure, she was happy to do it. In 2 days she came back with a price and we were shocked. THEN, she messaged Bill and said she had a buyer for our place. Her husband is a broker and he is working with the guy who will be managing the Texas Roadhouse restaurant here in Casa Grande. He’s been trying to buy and kept getting in a bidding war with all of the properties. The market here is on fire. He was excited to get the opportunity to make an offer and have it accepted without it getting on the market. We were thrilled because we didn’t have to deal with making the dogs vanish when people were viewing the house. He came and looked, (after he made the offer that we accepted) and 2 hours after he left we had the full price offer and he bought ALL of our furniture. I just bought all of the furniture new in Jan 2020. This will be the 3rd time since Oct 2013 that I have moved to a different house with zero furniture. I’m sort of looking forward to buying ALL new furniture again, sort of. Not really.

Finding the land in Kentucky was a fluke. I was haphazardly looking on and came across this land in Kentucky. Originally we were looking in Tennesee but as soon as we saw something we liked, it was already sold. I decided to see what Ky. had to offer. I saw this listing and thought it was too good to be true. I called Bill in to look, he was very interested and called the listing agent immediately. Even though we have never been to Kentucky, we made an offer on the property and the next morning found out it was accepted. It’s out in the boonies, sort of, not nearly as many conveniences as there are here, but it’s also not 110+ degrees every damn day. The dogs will be much happier.

The land has a newly built concrete foundation that was going to be for a house. It’s almost 40X60. It needs a concrete floor poured, the walls made higher and a roof, it will make a great shop for Bill. There is already water and electricity there, we have to put in a septic system, it’s been perk tested and approved for one. There is a gravel road also. The land is heavily wooded, lightly wooded and cleared, a little bit of everything. The dogs will not know what to do with no fences around them. Next spring we will put in a pool.

So, now the plan is to buy a motorhome here and Bill will drive it and I’ll drive my car, each with 2 dogs. We’ll go to the property and get the shop done and the house built. And, we’ll live in the motorhome. We initially planned to buy a camper to pull with my car; however, the weight limit really made it a no-go. The trailer would be the size of a postage stamp and if it were just 2 people it would be fine, maybe, but add in 4 big dogs and it’s guaranteed to make me insane.

Blame ALL OF THIS on these guys. We could have bought 5 acres but we wanted more for their running pleasure.


They don’t appreciate me taking their photos.

I took some evening photos for the buyer. The pool lights are on in this shot.
The Cereus cactus is HUGE.
So peaceful. Except for the houses all around.
Tip Top of the Cereus.
The bees love them.
This is on a type of prickly pear cactus (I think), second time it’s bloomed this season.

I went to get my teeth cleaned the other week. The hygenist started talking about the Water Pik flosser and how great it is. Of course, she had a captive audience, before I left the chair I had one ordered. She gave me one significant tip, lean over. Probably the 2 most important words ever spoken when having a water pik conversation. It came the next day and I was eager to try it. O  M  G.     Seriously, O  M  G. And I thought the Sonic Care toothbrush was tricky to use. [I learned quickly that you can not set the Sonic Care on the counter and position your teeth over the brush (that is vibrating at 30K cycles per minute) while using your hands to apply mascara]. It doesn’t freaking work, don’t even waste your time trying it to see if you can do it. It’s a no for sure. The WaterPik is a similar challenge. The first time using it I thought I was going to drown. I had, what was surely 11 gallons of water in my mouth, drowning for sure. Then I realized I could open my mouth and just let the water run out. That seems so uncouth though. There must be a proper way to use this thing. Another thing, do not use the flosser pik on a high speed. This is important if you wish to retain the gums that are on your teeth. Do you know how hard it is to aim that damn thing at the gum line when you can’t look up because your mirror and sink area will look like they made a trip over Niagara Falls. It’s not easy, but my teeth do feel well cleansed after using it and each time is getting easier.

Barrio. He owns me, just ask him.
Gringo likes to lay next to my pillow when I’m reading in bed. If another dog gets that position before Gringo does, he sleeps alongside the bed, squashed in against the wall.
He may as well talk, he is the bossiest dog we have ever had. Max rules.
The grocery store sent free coupons, one was for this ice cream. It was excellent but $4.99 a PINT.
Right hand side of display, by green box. 107 degrees. That’s a normal here, that was at 10AM also.
We cleaned for 2 days before the buyer came to see the house he was buying. Bill is using the floor steamer. The dogs aren’t fond of any floor tools.
The sky actually dripped for less than 5 minutes. It smells so weird here when it rains, a real wet dust smell.
Every bag of dog food must be inspected by Max before we throw it away.
I did a foot doc and Costco run the other day. Bill is cutting one of their rotisserie chickens up and the boys are drooling.
My handsome lawn ornaments. Just wish they pooped in the toilet.
Sold to the first person.

I have been spending my mornings in the pool. I sit on a chair on the shelf and read for 30-45 min, then I get in the pool with my hand weights and do water aerobics for 30 minutes, then I swim a few laps and get out and lay on a chaise until I’m dried off. I try to be back inside by 11:30-12. After that, it’s just too darn hot.

I am going to start packing my heavier winter clothes, things I won’t need until the end of October. We’ll probably have our stuff shipped to us, except Bill will trailer his tools that he will need with the motorhome. The motorhome we still don’t have. We’ll get one, no super hurry, we can’t park it here anyhow and will just have to pay for storage.

I think I will go in my closet and box some winter things. It will feel good to actually start packing, make it seem like it really is happening. And it is.

Arizona, it’s a dry heat.

06/04/21 How is it June already? May went by as a blur, more than likely attributed to the fact that I was stationary and staring at the same damn walls for almost 6 weeks. Actually, May 19th the doc gave me the go-ahead to walk with the boot. When my ankle was broken in 2013 I spent 6+ weeks in the boot, but it was my left ankle so I could drive. I saw my doc 6/2 and he said I could start walking the dogs and could drive, which means BOOT free. Finally. I don’t know where I needed to go but just knowing I could not drive there myself was irritating as hell.

I started physical therapy the 25th of May and went again on June 1st. That was it. Our insurance only accepts certain providers and it looks like they scraped the bottom of the barrel when choosing. The guy was great the first time, second time he spent 15 min with me, said to continue doing the exercises from the first visit and then he walked away. I was not a happy camper, they also made me wear a mask. I did not the first time and refuse to do so any longer. I talked to my doc and he said as long as I stay active and do the exercises my great-niece sent me, (she just got her doctorate in physical therapy) I would be fine.

We left the doc and dropped off lug nut things that were supposed to go with the old car when we traded it in. In my haste, I took them in error. (We traded in my CR-V, story to follow)

Last Saturday we drove north to look at some cars but only saw one we liked. We came home and started looking online and found one at the Honda dealer in Chandler. Bill drove up on Monday and came home with a Honda Pilot. We seriously just bought a bigger car for the dogs. It’s not new but is the limited edition, full leather, sunroof, all the goodies and only 60K miles. I would love to have a new one but it’s ridiculous when we’re going to use it to haul the dogs cross country. Next up is to buy a small camper then we’ll head east to look for property.

My new ride, Honda Pilot. The color is Black Forest Green. And the dogs will be very comfy. I took this pic while we were at Joann’s buying pleather to cover the back to attempt to keep the dog hair from embedding in the carpet. HAH!
This was my ride from Apr 23 to May 19th. It served me well. My friend crashed on her bicycle and is pretty banged up so she is buying it from me.

I was so excited last night that I could walk the dogs. It was at least 100 freaking degrees at 7 PM so we just went for a short walk. When I got home my ankle was dying and my right knee, which is my good knee, felt broken. I iced my ankle last night and this morning I felt a lot better.

I’m in the pool daily and loving every minute of it. I exercise my foot and swim some laps. The first few days when I was diving in I could really feel it in my shoulders and arms but it’s all good now. Water is so soothing to me.

My neighbor that brought me tulips last month brought me roses this month. So sweet of her to do that, I really must buy a vase or two. I cut off the top of a plastic water jug and used it. Lame, I know.

My friend Nick who is disabled had an accident a week after I had my surgery. He was on his motorized scooter in his backyard doing some work. I don’t know for a fact he was shirtless but I’m 95% sure he was. He backed up and hit a rock and his scooter tipped. He could not get back up and laid on the hot pavers wearing only his shorts and shoes for almost 3.5 hours. It was in the high 90’s that day. When the neighbor found him he was having seizures. The ambulance rushed him to the hospital and they life flighted him to the burn center in Tucson. He had 2nd degree burns on his legs, arms, back and chest. He was in the hospital in Tucson for several weeks and is now up here at a rehab center. I guess his burns are still not totally healed and he lost so much muscle strength from laying in a bed and being so severely dehydrated, that they are keeping him a few weeks longer. I have been sending him cards that I make with photos of the dogs and my cactus. He loves the dogs, he calls them his babies. (shout out to Sue Morrow for sending me a card for Nick, that was so thoughtful) We look forward to him coming back home, I plan on baking and cooking things for him.

The boys are doing great except Barrio and Gringo are having allergy issues. Barrio has a sore under his armpit, Gringo has one under the opposite arm pit. We have spent over $400.00 dollars just trying different dog foods. After dealing with this for a few years we took Barrio to the vet to get blood drawn. They sent it to a lab for dogs and cats. They came back with his being allergic to these foods: pork, tomato, flax, chicken, peas, corn, pumpkin, oats and rice. The list of environmental things is insane, I think he’s allergic to every grass or tree ever grown. I’m concentrating on the food. Once again we cooked liver and added veggies like broccoli, carrots, sweet potatoes and zucchini. Yesterday I bought a vat of coconut oil at Costco and am giving that to all of them along with a fish oil pill daily. The allergy place recommended food for him, the cheapest was $109.00 for a 24# bag, all Royal Canin. HELLO? Are they out of their minds? I searched online for hours yesterday and found decent dry food with no allergy-inducing ingredients and it was half the price of the Royal Canin. I went back and checked the allergy site and this food was on the 2nd page, of course. So it is on the way. Since we’re feeding 2 the special diet, liver and veggies will still be cooked. I just peeled 7 huge sweet potatoes and cooked them. I’ll throw them in the next batch of dog food.

I don’t know if I’ve mentioned this before but I will again. I started giving the boys Pedigree denta chews after Maxs’ expensive dental bill. The last time they were to the vet Dr. Bob said Gringo’s teeth were the cleanest teeth he has ever seen on a 6 year old dog. His teeth were nasty also. Huge huge difference, they will not need dental work in the near future, that’s for sure. Maybe I should eat them too.

I just saw my dentist for a cleaning and he recommended the Water Pick, it’s in my cart to purchase.

The boys are still not liking the heat here, it’s just too much. They go for a swim and then want right back inside to bask in the A/C. And you know what, I don’t blame them at all.

This is how they chill. Highway is always an upside down sleeper.
However, Max wins the total chill prize. He’s ALWAYS like this.
Barrio likes to curl up by my pillow, but Gringo thinks that is his spot. No matter how small of an area is between Barrio and the headboard, Gringo lays there. These boys.
My Cereus is starting to bloom. This one bud opened and closed before I got a photo of it. There are tons of other buds now.

Sorry I’ve been such a lousy blogger but I’ve not done anything exciting for quite some time now. Hopefully things will pick up over the next few months.

Enjoy your summer anyway you possibly can. XO



I am a Flamingo school drop-out

04/26/21 We had a great start to April, temps were in the high 90’s and we had company arriving Sat., the 3rd. I worked several days getting the spare bedrooms ready and baking. I made 3 doz zucchini muffins and realized I forgot to add the blueberries so I made 3 doz more with blueberries and I made a loaf of chocolate chip banana bread, broccoli salad and some guac.

Main guest room
Guest bath
Overdose of baked goods
3 of the boys out back

The dogs were of course terrified of the little people but they chilled because the kids were pretty cool with them and ignored them for the most part. Addison and Bryson were so excited to swim in the pool but had to wait until Sunday when the Easter Bunny brought them new swimsuits! We had dinner the evening when they got here and then sat around the table talking and sipping on some Damiana and Bill’s homemade beer. The kids were playing on the shelf of the pool, the water was barely 70 degrees.

The next morning we walked the dogs, Kailey and the kids came with me and Kev went with Bill. Once we got back to the house the kids checked out their Easter loot and then had an Easter egg hunt. I had a bag of stuff for each of them and of course, Kailey did as well. After breakfast, the kids headed right to the pool and pretty much stayed there most of the day. I forgot how much fun it is to have young kids around, especially these two. They were both so easy and chill, didn’t really matter what was going on, they were cool with it.

Nighttime swimming
Opening Easter “baskets”
Egg coloring
This kid is a hoot. He has half of the big plastic egg on his head.
Bryson crashed.
Addison is the dog whisperer. Highway loved her.

Most of the time here was spent around the pool, the kids are fish. I wish the water had been warmer but they didn’t seem to mind.

Addison is a good swimmer, Bryson is getting there.
He is so much like his father, a laugh a minute.
Sun baking
Addison is such a boho chick, she dresses so cute and is very laid back,
I love his curls.
I bought them each bubble wands, Bryson had a blast with them.
Happy we finally have outdoor dining.
Kevin, my favorite accomplice in all things bad. We’ve known each other since 2000 when we worked at BofA. We have had some crazy fun together, he’s a great guy. I always knew he would be a good Dad and he is.
Kevin, Kailey, Addison and Bryson the morning they left. It was so great having them visit us!

After the company left we just chilled for a few weeks, anticipating my upcoming foot surgery. I saw the Doc the 14th and we decided on the 23rd for surgery.

The boys celebrated their 6th birthday April 15th. They each got their regular kibble, zucchini and a can of tuna. We count our blessings daily that we have these dogs, they are the best ever!
I started walking Highway and Barrio together, mornings and evenings. They are pretty easy to handle.
All of the flowers we got from the nursery are doing well. The Oleander has been flowering for a few weeks. I did not know that Oleander is poisonous. Luckily the dogs have no interest in dried flowers.
The cactus is going crazy with blooms. Some are pink and others orange and they are FILLED with bees. The bees roll around inside the flower getting as much pollen as they can. Unfortunately, the flowers last just one night.

We invited our friend and neighbor over for dinner the week before my surgery. I met Nick soon after I moved here. He was born in 1942 and in 1979, while working at his landscaping company he fell from a tree. He hit all the branches on the way down. He was taken to the hospital. They could find nothing wrong with him so they sent him home. He woke up the next morning paralyzed from the waist down. He also had a stroke so he is very hard to understand. He is such a nice guy, I’ve been taking him baked goods, lasagna, all kinds of food for a year now. When he came to eat he was unable to spread the tapenade on the foccacia bread. It took me a few minutes to realize why he wasn’t using the tapenade so I put some on his plate for him. Turns out, he is from Philadelphia and he used to be a dancer on American Bandstand.

We made a chicken, pineapple, peppers and onion dish on the grill and I made a large fruit salad for dessert. I gave him dishes of both to take home.

I spent the week before surgery getting stuff done around here, knowing I wouldn’t be dusting or vacuuming for a while. I had to be at the hospital in Mesa by 6 AM. We got there before it opened. Bill just dropped me off and drove home to take care of the dogs. When he got home and the boys realized I wasn’t with him, they searched the house for me. He walked them and fed them and turned around and came back to get me.

When I saw the doc the 14th I had asked him to allow me to stay awake for the surgery, he said ok. They had to put me to sleep for the nerve block, he said it’s quite painful and burns very badly. Once that was over, I woke up and was talking to the nurse and the anesthesiologist. They had Johnny Cash music playing, which was great. I could feel the doc doing something to my heel, it kind of hurt but not enough to scream or anything. Then I felt him sewing me up.

I was taken back to the area I was previously in and got dressed and called Bill. He was almost at the hospital when I called. Once he got there they went over some things with him. The doc stopped by and said, “by the way, your tendon was destroyed.” It had adhered to my heel and he had to extricate it from there (that’s what I felt), plus I had a huge calcification that he removed. The 45-minute surgery ended up taking 90 minutes.

We were home by 11 AM and the dogs were insane. They were so worried that I was gone. They spent most of the day in bed with me. My foot is feeling fine, no pain to speak of. We bought a new wheelchair and crutches so I can motor around the house. Crutches and 4 dogs who are constantly at your feet is not a good combo, plus I really suck on crutches. Our toilet is in a small room, it’s so crazy. I use the crutches to get in there, then stand on one foot (Flamingo), hold onto the doorjamb to sit down, hold onto the doorjamb to get up, rest my bad leg on the toilet seat until I can get my clothes situated, flush, then go for the crutches again. I freaking hate being laid up and would like to moan and whine and complain in general but I won’t because my friend Nick has it much worse than I do and he doesn’t complain at all.

Amazing, state of the art hospital in Mesa, AZ
My new splint
Barrio and Gringo love watermelon
They also love brussel sprouts, which is what they are begging for.
Check this soap out on Instagram

A long-time friend of ours from PA recently messaged me and said his wife was making soaps and candles and to send my address so they could give me some to try. Check them out on IG, @Mountain_Elk_Soaps_and_Candles. I got black raspberry and vanilla, Blueberry Thyme, Oatmeal honey and Lemongrass. So far I have used the black raspberry and vanilla and it is wonderful soap. It smells so good and makes your skin really soft.

My friend Galina is an artist, you can see some of her work at We worked together at Horizon Bank. I will be forever grateful to that place for introducing me to some of my fav people. I sent Galina a photo of me that my friend Stan took at our last class reunion. Galina did a drawing of me and sent it to me. I LOVE it. Galina’s clients include: Salvatore Ferragamo, David Yurman, Neiman Marcus, Seattle Magazine, Kendra Scott, Nordstrom, Seattle Bride, The Bellevue Collection, JCrew. If you have a special event or a favorite photo, contact her for a drawing to display in your house.

Check out Galina’s work @ or on Instagram @drawingblueberry.

One last thing. I know I’ve commented about our love for Brussel Sprouts, well, I just found this recipe on a pinch of yum. Try it, you will love it.

I’ll check in again next month, hopefully, I will be walking and no longer doing knee stands on the toilet seat.


Eclectic Twist

Design And Live Outside the Lines