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Monday, September 24, 2012

Nearing the End . . .

. . . of September, that is. As slow as August seemed to go, September seems to have flown by! We have just four more weeks here at the Corps of Engineers Visitor Center. That also means just four more weeks to spoil AubreyLynn! Uh oh.

Last week went pretty much as the weeks preceding – working three times a week, then enjoying the down time.

We did spend some time with Sam and AubreyLynn. We were going to go to their house but Sam needed to go to Best Buy which is north of us (and Sam is south of us), so she came to us, had lunch and then us girls went shopping. It was so nice having some one-on-one time with Sam. And, of course, AubreyLynn was just as cute as ever. Shopping for Daddy We bought her daddy some computer games to keep him occupied when he's not actively defending our freedom. :)

Other than that, we've been hanging out at home. We did go to dinner at a local Mexican place with our co-workers, Denny & Gale. The meal was very good; food was plentiful and the price wasn't. :)

Have a great week, my friends! Until the next time . . .

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Just Livin’ Life

Yeah, not much going on here. We're working our three days a week at the Visitor Center and then enjoying lazy days off.

We have five weeks left here in Kansas. The Very peaceful weather has begun to cool off (it was 48 here this morning!) and the days are just Lovely morning at Hillsdale Lake CoEbeautiful I took these pictures yesterday morning while I was gathering weather data.  Isn't that a peaceful setting?

Well, just wanted to check in with our friends. Hope you all are having a great week so far. Oh! And a shout out to Darrell & Judy, congratulating them on their newest grandbaby – Josiah! Enjoy those cuddles while you can, D & J!

Until the next time . . .

Friday, September 14, 2012


The past couple of days have been all about the granddaughters. And there's nothing wrong with that. Well, except we DO have a grandson, too! But, he's 13 and is not very into his Pop and Nana. As a matter of fact I just sent him a message on Facebook asking him to catch me up on his life so I could do a little bragging on him in the blog, too. We'll see if that stirs up anything! :)

In the meantime, I'll brag on the girls. Wednesday we had special visitors – AubreyLynn brought her momma, grandma, and grandpa to visit with us. It was such a nice change to have them come to us instead of us going to Steve & Donna's. Not that we don't like going there, but it was just nice to have them come to our home.

We had a yummy dinner of hamburger taco pieDinner at Pop and Nana's when they arrived around 12:30. Donna brought brownies and ice cream for dessert, but we decided to wait for awhile before eating that. AubreyLynn had a blast exploring the RV. She is very good on the steps and entertained herself by going up and down them. Thankfully, we have nothing in the RV that could hurt her, so we just let her go.

After dinner, we took a drive through the state park so Steve and Donna could see the camping facilities as well as the boat launches. During the summer, they go camping just about every weekend. They also have a pontoon boat which they bring with them when camping. They really liked one of the camping areas because of the many sites that were shaded. We also took them over to the horse camping area, just because.

Once we were back at the RV, we had our dessert. And it was yummy, of course. You can't go wrong with brownies and ice cream! Momma, Baby Girl and Grandma They stayed for awhile longer, until AubreyLynn got fussy. Poor thing, she hadn't had her nap! She'd only gotten about 30 minutes during our drive through the state park.

I love this picture of Samantha and AubreyLynn!

Sam & AubreyLynn

We said our good-byes and hugs. It was such a great afternoon.

Yesterday was all about Reagan, our now SEVEN year old granddaughter! Yep, yesterday was Reagan's birthday. She's seven! She has brought such joy to our lives.





And her momma made sure she was celebrated from the time she opened her eyes until bedtime.

Good morning, birthday girl! Birthday balloons

They are going to New York City tomorrow to celebrate at the American Girl Doll store. So, what else would Reagan get for her birthday? Of course. Her very own look-alike American Girl Doll.

With her look-alike American Girl doll


And she's gotten money and gift cards from everyone else so she can shop 'til she drops at the store. Can't wait to see all her goodies!

Randy & I are so blessed with the grandchildren God has given us. Our kids are doing a great job parenting them. There's nothing like being a grandparent!

The weekend is gonna be another lazy one. We'll go to church on Sunday, but that's the only thing on the agenda. And there's nothing wrong with that. :)

Until the next time . . .

Monday, September 10, 2012

One Third

We are one third of the way through September already! August seemed to take forever to get through and here we are ten days into September. Randy's theory is that the first month of any new place seems long because we are trying to get into the routine of being there. Makes sense to me. Of course, I have no theory about this so anything would make more sense. :)

Last week we celebrated Lindsay's birthday and this week we get to celebrate Reagan's! She will be seven years old this Thursday. Dang, SEVEN. And she acts like she's seventeen! :) We were good grandparents and got her birthday goodies in the mail on Saturday, so they should arrive on time. When you're an absentee Pop and Nana, ya gotta be sure to get as many grandparent points as possible!

We had a lovely weekend here. The weather was absolutely gorgeous with temps in the mid-80s and low humidity. The lows have been in the mid-50s!! Saturday we didn't do much, although I got a lot of cross stitching done. I've finished two Christmas projects and am working on another thank-you project. Sunday we attended church and then after dinner, we took a “mule ride.”

The “mule” is actually an ATV-type vehicle which Randy uses when he's working. It's the easiest way to get around the lake. I wanted to see the area on the lake where he and Denny (the other workamper) were dragging cedar trees in preparation of building fish habitats. Prepping lake for fish habitats The area on the right side of the picture is where the trees will be placed.

We then rode down to the dam so I could get some pictures.


Dam outlet


Boats on the lake

I had never realized that the wildlife folks actually create habitats for the fish in these lakes. I just figured the fish live in the water and do their thing. Apparently not. These trees will give the fish areas in which to spawn and be protected from predators. The trees will be placed along the edge of the lake as well as further in. We'll be hosting a National Public Lands Day late in September during which volunteers will come and help.

Okay, environmental lesson over. :)

Our week is shaping up to be pretty much the same as last week. Not sure if we're going to Steve & Donna's or they are coming here. That's the big decision we have. Rough, huh? :)

Wishing you all a great week!! Until the next time . . .

Thursday, September 06, 2012

Into a Routine

After a month here at Hillsdale Lake Corps of Engineers Visitor Center, I think we're into a routine. And anyone who knows me, knows I like my routine.

We work 3 days a week and now also have the weekends free. We find our way to visit Sam & AubreyLynn once a week. We've found a good church to attend on Sundays. And the other time is filled with reading, cross stitching Christmas gifts (for me), and lots of TV. :)

And we're enjoying it.

I like having structure in my life. Yeah, I know. Retirement is about going with the flow. And that's okay with me – I just like “directed” flow. :)

We had another great afternoon with AubreyLynn yesterday – oh, and her mommy, Sam, and her other grandparents, Steve & Donna. We feel very comfortable in their home which is maybe not a good thing for them!! hahahaha As I did last week, I took dinner with us. Just a way of saying thank you for opening their home to us and allowing us to do laundry while we're there. I took baked ziti and a salad and Donna added garlic bread and homemade carrot cake. Very yummy!

Even though I dropped my Curves membership a few months ago, I've continued to be diligent in my exercise – even though I still hate it!!! I “walk” five to six days a week to one of Leslie Sansone' Walk at Home videos. On mornings we work, I only get in two to three miles, but on the days off I walk four miles. She directs a great workout, and it's just not walking in place. I highly recommend it.

Randy is getting some exercise on the days we work. He's outside in the heat, doing whatever tasks Jim, our ranger, gives him. As the season is winding down, there are things to do at the shop and not so much around the Visitor Center.

We've got just six more weeks here and then we'll take a few days to play before arriving back in Bonifay on November 1.

Tomorrow our precious Lindsay is celebrating her birthday. She is such a joy and I am grateful to be her mom. Watching her blossom into the lovely woman she is has been such a gift. God has given us a deep friendship on top of being mother and daughter and that is something I cherish.

Until the next time . . .

Saturday, September 01, 2012

My Favorite Time of Year

The summer is unofficially on its way out. Here we are at Labor Day Weekend. And my favorite time of year is almost here. I love the fall season; no/low humidity, temps in the 70s during the day, and the kids are in school! :) This is the time of year that I enjoy sitting out on the patio because the bugs have decided to go somewhere else. Yep, I'm looking forward to the fall.

Life is pretty routine around here. This is our last weekend to work as the Visitor Center closes on the weekends after Labor Day. Yes, I know that's the opposite of most place, but that's how they do it here at Hillsdale Lake. And I'm not complaining. Saturdays were long days; an eight hour shift during which not a lot happened. So, we'll work our 12 hours each during the five day week, get a couple of days off and have a weekend as well. Gosh, we haven't had a “weekend” in almost eight years! When you're retired, every day is the weekend!

We spent Wednesday afternoon with AubreyLynn. I am so grateful to Sam's folks, Steve and Donna, who have welcomed us so warmly into their home every week. Donna tells us to come whenever we want, which is so very nice. To say thank you, I took dinner Wednesday night; it wasn't much, just taco soup, but it was a small way to show her how much I appreciate her.

And of course, we had a blast with the Raspberries!little miss.  She decided to spend about five minutes blowing raspberries at us. Very funny.

Yesterday we went grocery shopping and fed the truck, too. We got lucky and found diesel fuel for $3.97/gallon. Most places around here are over $4/gallon now. Ugh. Thankfully, we're not driving a lot so fill-ups are few and far between.

The rain finally came yesterday and has continued through the night and so far today. I know the folks around here are thrilled. Although, I'm sure lots of weekend plans have been ruined, but no complaining allowed since this area (like many others) is in desperate need of the rain.

Posing pretty One more granddaughter shot, this one of Reagan. She is our big first-grader now and is looking so dang grown up.

And Tommy, our eighth grader is doing well in his first week of school – or so he tells me. :) No pics of him, of course. Gotta get on his mom about that!

Well, enough rambling for now. Hope you all have a great weekend. Until the next time . . .