Friday, May 26, 2017

Counting down.........and getting last minute things done

Most all of the work outside is don! Finally!  And we were even blessed just yesterday with some most welcomed, and most needed RAIN!!

The forecast for  rain here in Placid Lakes has been anywhere from 65% to 85% for days!!!  On Tuesday we got real excited as we sat on the back lanai watching the beautiful Blue Heron down by the water...........We could hear the thunder in the background, and the sky was very menacing!  If we had not been sitting outside we would have missed the 2 minutes of sprinkles!!!

 But on Thursday we  finally had some pretty good showers for most of the morning.  Once it stopped I took a ride into Sebring to do some last minute shopping...... Needed a dressy blouse, a pair of Sandals for Rich, hair supplies, bathroom supplies, filter for the refrigerator, a new pot for my bamboo plant, ink for the printer, batteries, graduation card, make a deposit in the bank, withdraw cash, and a few items from the grocery store!

Speaking of the new pot..............this "good luck" bamboo plant has grown significantly since we received it from a good friend back in 2013 when we moved into this house.

Counting down the days now.  Just five more before we begin the first leg to Iowa, so time to start thinking about how everything is going to fit in the car!  We realized a few days ago that we did not have anywhere near the room we had in the Camry in this new Terrain!  So, between the two of us we managed to remove the bench seat in the back.  That will be staying in our garage for the duration of the trip!  Lots of room now for whatever we need!!

Our trip to Iowa is to attend the HS Graduation of our granddaughter.   Dennis' step-father and step-sister, and Crystal's Mom will all be arriving there next Friday, as will we.  Plans are for a party on Saturday afternoon, baseball game Saturday night, and graduation ceremony Sunday evening.  Today we received in the mail the "official" invitation from Chauna.  Not looking forward to the long trip - but really excited about visiting and spending time with the family.

Sunday, May 21, 2017

Busy day in the yard!

First - I have to share my Mother's Day flowers again, that I got from Dennis and the family.  It's now 10 days after they arrived by mail.  All the buds have blossomed and they are just beautiful!!

Now - Saturday!  What a day!  It was that one day each year, before we head north, that we check all the sprinklers.  It was a miserably hot day, so getting soaking wet from head to toe was actually quite welcoming!  And getting soaked we did!!! Dripping !   Rich cleaned and adjusted several of the heads, and now we are just praying for rain so that we don't need to move the underwater corrugated pipe in the canal!

More yard work - and that was the pineapple plants.  The one very large plant that was located next to the walk way needed to be removed.  Actually that was a third generation plant. Yes one we planted three years ago!  It was getting very very large and hanging over the sidewalk - which was driving me crazy!!! But four or five days ago, the weight of the pineapple broke the plant.  SO  we needed to harvest the pineapple a little sooner than we normally would have.  It is now sitting outside in the sun to ripen..........the plant is gone and we've moved the bird bath to that area.

If you remember, back in March we harvested one of our largest pineapples and starting the rooting process.  Today we (actually Rich) planted it along with the others on the side of the lanai.  The baby of the bunch!

Needless to say we were both exhausted by the end of the day.  Knowing we would have a busy day, I had made up some Chicken K-Bobs for dinner and had them marinating in the fridge all day!


Saturday, May 20, 2017

High School Stuff for Chauna, .Ruck for a Cause, Time to Fledge??? Last Dinner with Friends

Let's start with the Great Blue Heron..........As you know we had a couple of nests in the area.  We've watched Mom and Dad build the nest, care for the eggs ( but we've only seen one baby!!), and care for the little time until it's ready to spread it's wings and fly.  The little one is not so little any more.......and we've caught a couple of pictures of him/her out of the nest and happily flapping it's wings.  Should be ready to fledge pretty soon as it's been close to two months since birth.

High School is coming to end for our grand-daughter, Chauna.  End of year Senior activities are taking place, as plans begin for graduation ceremonies.   May 15th was the Senior Honors Program.  And Dennis put it so nicely saying " Always proud of Chauna, with her devotion to success and excellence".  We are indeed very very proud of her accomplishments.

Yesterday, with Dalton home from college for Summer break, the family attended the end of year band banquet.

 Yesterday, Chick-Fil-A, Davenport, IA posted pictures of Chauna on their face book page.........  "Big congrats to Chauna Donald on being our second Chick-fil-A Leadership Scholarship winner!  A great team player whether in our restaurant or serving our community!  It is an honor to have you as part of our team"

And on the 13th, Dennis, Crystal and Chauna participated in Chick-fil-A's Ruck for a Cause - which looked like  a really fun day!!

Eleven more days - and we'll be on our way to visit with family for Chauna's graduation.  Looking forward to seeing family and meeting Ryan (Chauna's boyfriend) and Sara ( Dalton's girlfriend).  Saturday before graduation a backyard party is planned, and Saturday evening we will be attending a local baseball game where Chauna and her best friend, and Ryan will be throwing out the first pitch! Sunday will be graduation ceremonies...........and then from there we will head to NY a few days later.

In the meantime - we met up with friends, Nathan and Krystal, and Buddy and Dianne at Cody's for Two for One Fajitas on Wednesday evening.   Our last get together for a while.  Had a great time and look forward to seeing all of them again sometime in August, God permitting.

Saturday, May 13, 2017

Countdown to Iowa and NY.............Celebrating Mother's Day

Can't believe it's just a little more than two weeks before we head north.  Been making lists and planning stops and getting things done that need to be done before we leave.  Still got some outside word to do - but mainly PRAYING for rain - or there won't be enough water in the canal to leave the lawn sprinklers on!!!  Still need to pay a few bills ahead, trim some bushes and get the pineapple that's been rooting, planted!!

In the meantime, I discovered that the birds that nest in the back yard each year are not King Birds as we initially thought.  They are actually Ash-throated Flycatchers!!!  We have two or three that continue to drive me crazy tapping at the window!

Of course, this weekend we celebrate Mother's Day.   On the wings of angels, God called both of our Moms to his heavenly home, but our love and fond memories remain in our hearts.   Happy Mother's Day Edna (Donald) Strawn and Marge Benjamin!  Love you and miss you both so much!

And to our daughter, Crystal - we hope your day is as awesome as you are.  To a super Mom and a beautiful lady........Happy Mother's Day~

And thank you Dennis, Crystal, Chauna and Dalton for the lovely floral bouquet and vase!  And than you Rich for my vase of fresh flowers ( firecracker flowers and azalea blossoms!) and your special home made card!

More doctor appointments this week as Rich continues with his rehab therapy, and I have a follow-up with the foot doctor.  Making plans to get together one last time with Buddy and Diane and Nathan and Krystal before we head north!

Saturday, May 6, 2017

Just Catching up

Well the weather has not changed much........still so dry - but getting hotter for sure.  I don't think we had a half an inch of rain during the whole month of April............and so far May isn't looking too much better.   If the water in the canal gets too much lower, we'll need to turn off the lawn sprinklers!  Cuz we'll just be sucking in mud!

But the lack of rain has not affected the palm trees!  Once again we spent the better part of the day trimming and bundling for pick up last Tuesday.  Rich's back has been pretty I've been trying to do a good portion of the bending and carrying....

Speaking of Rich's back......he's been back to the doctor, is on pain medication and muscle relaxers, and going to CORA a couple of times a week for rehab therapy and that has made a difference.

Always checking out the nest to see if we can catch a glimpse of one of the baby Blue Heron........Got lucky finally and caught the little one looking out -------and Mom on watch duty!  Our resident Black Rat snake was out sunning himself a few days ago - and stopped to pose for the camera!
On Friday we took a break, drove to Hudson to see a show.  It's about a three hour drive one way..........and not the most scenic of routes.  Lots of traffic going and rainy while we were there, and lots of traffic coming back.   Took  County Road 70 and I 275 to Tarpon Springs going up...coming back OnStar took US CR 60, I-4 and 27 (terrible!!!)   But I always do enjoy the view from the Sunshine Sky way Bridge.........and then coming back the view from Bayshore Blvd.

This time we stayed at the Quality Inn and Suites in Tarpon Springs.   Lovely hotel, beautiful grounds, pool and jacuzzi, nice bar, open until 2AM, and a very nice hot breakfast in the morning.  Our room was very nice..........first floor, with slider and small patio/ sitting area outside the slider pool side.

We had originally planned on Mexican for Cinco de Mayo, but didn't find it.......stopped at Chili's but it was crowded with a long waiting line.........  Spotted an Italian Restaurant, Sorrento Little Italy, and decided to give it a try.  AWESOME~   Everything including the pasta is made there.  Have a Butcher right there and you get "Custom Cuts" of meat, a HUGE Delicatessen,  Fresh Cheeses, Excellent sandwiches, Pasta and Homemade Bread!  And the guy making the pizza's tossed and twirled those crusts - and the pizza looked delicious!  An array of desserts to match any Greek Bakery!  But we had NO room for dessert!  What a shame!

From there we made our way to the Show Palace in Hudson.   A bit of a risk.....since the last time we were here it was REAL bad and we said we would not go back........But we saw the advertisement for the "one night only" Tribute to Barry Manilow, and decided to give it a try.    Went just for the show - not dinner.   Rich ordered a beer, and me a glass of wine...........The show was EXCELLENT.  I did not want it to end!    So glad we went back.

Both of us are pretty tired from the long ride it will be an early night.   Rich will call tomorrow evening to see if he has to show up for Jury Duty on Monday.............and it's only a little more than three weeks before we're on the road trip to Iowa and then NY.