Pictures From Jan-Feb 2020 - It's All About Having Fun!!

Tuesday, December 31, 2019

Monday 12-30 Day of Dancing

Having fun with square dancing friends

We woke up to a chilly morning, it was in the high 40s. We prefer it to be cool for sleeping so before going to bed I set the heaters to 64 degrees. Larry always gets up around 6:00 and he then sets the heaters to 70 degrees. When I woke up it was comfortable. I made biscuits for breakfast and that warmed the Minnie even more.

We spent the day square dancing with friends. The morning session was at 9:30 at the Peppermint Palace, it was a C1 Workshop with Bronc Wise. During the workshop Bronc went through a few concepts. They were; Blocks, Triple Waves, Triple Boxes and Tandem Concepts. When I dance any of these concepts it's hard to see the formations and to remember where the formation is located. Bronc is a very smooth caller and the dancing flows great. When he walks through the concepts he's just as smooth and he explains the concepts so you can understand them. The dancers were very helpful when I needed the help. We had six and a half squares of dancers. We had an outstanding morning of dancing to Bronc. It was great to see his wife Fia, she is always smiling and friendly. 

In the afternoon at 1:00 we were back on the floor dancing. The dance was an A2 Dance at Pharr South to Darryl Lipscomb. We had five squares and no one sat out, including his wife Decah. We danced with friends that we hadn't danced with in awhile and they were happy to see us. We had a great welcome back from everyone. Darryl did a super job calling and walked through moves that people struggled with. He also introduced Counter Rotates from other positions that are not usually called at the Advance level. We had a super time.

In the evening we hung around the Minnie. I walked around J-Five for forty-five minutes to get some more of my steps in. By the time I finished my walk I had gotten 15,500 steps. I increased my goal to 16,000 so I did 500 steps in place to get 16,000 steps. My actual daily goal is 12,300 steps. I want to get back to doing 17,000 steps.  

During the evening I did some Sudoku and my Daily Challenges. We had a wonderful day of dancing.

Monday, December 30, 2019

Sunday 12-29 No Dancing

A day of relaxation

It was a windy day. The wind was out of the north and was very comfortable, we didn't have to run the air conditioner. At 4:30 the wind died down. It was very pleasant with the temperature at 70 degrees.

On Sundays there is no dancing so we spent the day hanging around the Minnie. Over the past five years we have done most of the tourist stuff in The Valley. Larry finished a book and started reading another. I did my daily challenges and The World Tour Solitaire, which had 30 games. Then I worked on my annual book and did some Sudoku. I walked around J-Five for an hour and half to get my steps. Today I did 15,000 steps. It's hard to do my steps when we aren't dancing or walking anywhere.

Just having fun

Sunday, December 29, 2019

Saturday 12-28 J-Five Get Together

Having fun with friends

We started the day by going over to the J-Five clubhouse for the Saturday get together. Every Wednesday and Saturday morning J-Five has a get together to go over what's happening in the park and upcoming activities. They serve donuts and coffee, on the calendar it starts at 8:00 but people start to show up at 7:30. The actual meeting starts at 8:30 and is over at 9:00. When we showed up everyone were happy to seeing us. During the meeting Marty announces the people who have arrived since the last meeting. Then she walks around and read off the boards on the upcoming events. One board is broken down by each day of the week and shows what activities are going on that day. The upcoming special event is the park's New Years Eve party on Tuesday, it cost $10 a person. On New Year Day they having their annual Hamburger Dinner for $5 per person. We had a super time visiting with our J-Five friends.

While we were at the get together Marie asked if I still had the picture of her four dogs that I took a couple years ago. She told me that they had to put one down this year. I told her I did and I would e-mail her the picture. When we got back to the Minnie I found the picture. Larry suggested that we send it to Walmart and make a few prints of the picture. So he went to Walmart Photo sites and ordered a large print and a few more small ones. They were ready in about an hour.

After lunch we loaded into the car and went to Walmart. The lady in the photo department was so excited about the picture because it had dogs. She asked us what type of dogs they were. We told her we didn't know because they weren't our dogs. She showed us a picture of her dog and we visited with her a little while. The pictures came out great. Larry sent Marie an e-mail with the picture of the dogs, then I walked over and delivered the prints. Bob was very excited and asked how much he owed us. I told him they were a Christmas gift.

Marie's and Bob's dogs

When I got back to the Minnie I studied Taminations and so did Larry. Then we went to the C1 Dance at Casa Del Sol, it is about 17 miles away in Donna. Casa Del Sol has a beautiful hall where we dance. The hall has an indoor pool and spa, stage, kitchen, restrooms, tables and a huge area to dance. The hall had gorgeous Christmas decorations. They have big light fixtures in the hall and they made them into angels. 

Randy had a C2 dance before the C1 dance. He was dancing so that they could have three squares. We were the only couple that showed up to dance C1 but some of the C2 dancers stayed and we ended up with six couples for C1. We were surprised to see Char and Glenn at the dance because they were in Sun City just a couple of days ago for the holiday. The first tip was open so a few of the C2 dancers stayed and Randy danced to make two squares. The second and last tips Randy did six couple squares. It was challenging but a lot of fun. The other tips we had one square. The six couples squares are a lot of fun but they can be hard because of you have to think all the time. We had an outstanding afternoon dancing to Randy and with friends.

One of the tables with a Christmas angel on it

One of the lights decorated like an angel

Casa Del Sol Christmas tree

Friends having fun dancing to Randy

Larry enjoying the dance

We spent the evening relaxing in the Minnie. I walked around J-Five for 45 minutes to get some steps. Then I stepped in place for another half hour. By the end of the night I had done 13,500 steps. Then I spent the rest of the night watching YouTube videos and doing Sudoku puzzles. We had a great day.

Saturday, December 28, 2019

Friday 12-27 First Day of Dancing

Gorgeous day in the Rio Grande Valley

Today it was sunshine with blue skies. It got up to 80 degrees. It feels like a spring day instead of winter.

We spent the day dancing to Randy Dougherty. The first session was at 10:00 for a DBD dance. It started out very shaky because we didn't have a square but another couple showed up and with Randy calling and dancing we had a square. Randy has a dog named Abby that when allowed he brings along, today he also showed up with a Chihuahua named Allie, now he has two dogs, he wanted Abby to have company. Abby was very good with the puppy, I think she was a little protective of the puppy. Randy also had a lady friend. She danced with Randy to make the square. We danced eight tips and had a blast. One of the couples hadn't danced to Randy before and was very impressed with him. We love dancing to Randy because he makes the dance challenging and puts you in unusual positions. 

Then we had an hour break for lunch. We were back dancing A2 to Randy from 1:00 to 3:00. This dance was called Freaky Friday. We had 13 couples, which made three squares plus an extra couple. Once again the dancing was very challenging. We had an outstanding afternoon of dancing with friends, some we haven't seen since last year. We had a great day of dancing.

By the time we finished the second session of dancing we were tired. When we got home we spent the evening relaxing. Larry read. I walked around the RV Park for a half hour to get some of my steps. By the end of the day I had gotten 12,500 steps. I also did some Sudoku puzzles. LIFE IS GOOD!!!.     

Friday, December 27, 2019

Thursday 12-26 J-Five RV Park

J-Five RV Park

We spent the night in the Lowe's parking lot, it was an excellent place to stay. There was a large empty parking area on the far side of the shopping complex where they have not yet built any buildings. When we parked the Minnie yesterday there was only one eighteen wheeler but later on in the evening a van joined us. Not a problem because he was far away from us. The refrigerator ran all night on the truck but it was far enough away it didn't bother us. We slept very well.

Last night before I went to bed I did some Sudoku puzzles. I use to do them all the time on our trips but since I got a Kindle I do more reading. When I was doing the Sudoku puzzles all the time they became a lot easier to solve. But last night when I was working on them they were a lot more difficult. It's always amazing to me when I haven't done anything in awhile how hard it is when I start. I started a jigsaw puzzle a few weeks ago and it has 1,000 pieces, usually I complete a 1000 piece in a week or two but I only have about a third of it done. I do admit I haven't worked on it constantly and it is a little more complex. I'm going to continue working on the Sudoku puzzles.

Doing Sudoku puzzles

We started the day by registering in the office of J-Five. We don't make a reservation because we're not sure when we'll be there or how long we're going to stay. Every year we get another site. This year is no different. The lot we have is very near the office, the clubhouse and bathrooms so it's very convenient for us.

Once we got our site we took the car off the dolly and rolled the dolly to the site. Then we parked the Minnie on the site. This will be home for at least a month. Then we set the Minnie up and set up the table. We didn't have any dancing today so we spent the day relaxing. My allergies were bothering me so I took a nap.

Relaxing day

After dinner I walked around the RV Park for 40 minutes to get some of my steps in. As I walked around I said hi to a few people. Then at 7:00 I walked across the street to the clubhouse to play card bingo. We had nine people playing and a dealer. There were 12 games, 10 games the pay out was $1.40 and the 6th and 12th games the pay out were $2.00. It was a small group of folks but we all had a great time joking and laughing. It cost $2.00 a piece. It was divided in two sessions. We played 6 games, then had a break and the last 6 games. I won two of the games. The first game I had to share the $1.40 with another person. I ended up winning $2.10 but I bought a soda for $1.00 so I ended up only spending $.90 for a two hours of entertainment. When I got back I did some more steps.

By the end of the day I did 10,000 steps. I didn't get my goal, which is 13,000 steps. When we travel it's always hard to get my goal. When we're in the Valley we normally dance twice a day, once in the morning and once in the afternoon. After doing two, two hour dances I'm tired and can't motivate myself to finish my steps.

Thursday, December 26, 2019

Wednesday 12-25 Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas

I hope everyone had a Merry Christmas.

We spent the day driving 385 miles to the Rio Grand Valley. This is our fifth year going to the Valley. We started after we finished our plus classes. The first year we spent a couple of weeks in Donna Texas at Bit of Heaven. The second, third and fourth year we were at J-Five, we enjoy the people, the activities and the park is very nice, it is smaller than most of the parks and we like that. The first couple of years at J-Five we stayed a month but last year we stayed three because we learned another level of square dancing. This year we will also be at J-Five, might be a month, maybe two.

Trip to the Rio Grand Valley

On the way to the Rio Grand Valley we stopped a couple of time to stretch our legs, get gas and to have lunch. This is our fourth year to travel on Christmas day, the traffic is very light and we easily get through Austin and San Antonio. I stayed awake the first half of the trip but the closer we got to The Valley I couldn't keep my eyes open. We didn't want to disturb anyone's Christmas holiday in the park so we stayed the night in the Lowe's parking lot. For quick overnight stays we prefer Lowe's or Home Depot over Walmart, there is way less traffic and they are much quieter, of course you can't buy a rotisserie chicken. The drive was all four lane highways and interstates.

Merry Christmas to everyone.


Wednesday, December 25, 2019

Tuesday 12-24 Christmas Celebration

Merry Christmas

What a great day. 

Tomorrow we leave on our trip to the Rio Grand Valley. Today we went to Round Rock and celebrated Christmas with Louise. Before going there we did a bit more work getting the Minnie ready for our trip and then I did some housework.

We left the house at 12:45 and arrived at Round Rock at 2:00. Louise put a relish tray together with sweet pickles, cheese, olives and pepperoni. She was busy baking during the week, she baked fudge and chocolate oatmeal cookies. We snacked on the goodies while we opened our gifts. We got a lot of wonderful gifts. Thank you Shirley (Larry's mom), Barbara (Larry's aunt) and Louise. It took us a couple of hours. Then for dinner I heated up the casserole and stuffing I brought along. The casserole was made with spaghetti sauce, sausage and noodles. For dessert Louise served us pecan pie.

Christmas dinner

Having fun opening gifts

Larry opening one of his gifts

Louise having a great time with her Happy Harvest gift

Louise has been having some problems with buffering when she watches videos through her Roku. For Christmas we gave her some new networking gear and replaced her Roku with the one we have been using, it is a higher end model and allows you to connect via a wired connection instead of wireless. Larry wanted to see if it would help her problem. After dinner Larry installed the wired network devices and the newer Roku. It worked very well. Hopefully it continues to work. While Larry was installing the Roku I played with Alice. 

We had a super Christmas celebration.

When we got home we put our gifts away. Then we watched a couple of episodes of Boston Legal. Then I finished watching the fifth season of Bones.

Tuesday, December 24, 2019

Monday 12-23 Getting Ready

Our day started out with a little fog. Once the fog lifted I started back on putting things in the Minnie for our trip. I loaded clothes and finished loading up the refrigerator. We are almost ready, we just need to put a few last minute items in and I need to make the bed.

After finishing up getting the Minnie ready I did a couple loads of clothes. We went to town and stopped the mail. I also made a casserole to take with us tomorrow when we go to Round Rock to celebrate Christmas. 
Doing laundry

Having fun cooking
In the evening we watched The Polar Express, it has kind of become a Christmas tradition. Then we finished watching the second season of Boston Legal. Then I watched bones. We had a great day.

Monday, December 23, 2019

Sunday 12-22 Getting the Minnie Ready

Getting ready for the Rio Grand Valley

We started the day off by going to town to do some grocery shopping for our trip to Rio Grand Valley. First stop was Walmart, then across the street to HEB because it had Coke products on sale. The final stop was Aldi where we picked up a few packs of fajita pork. We also saw some seasoned pork for tacos that looked good so we bought one.

Grocery Shopping

After lunch we started working on getting the Minnie ready. I loaded up most of the food. Larry checked out the air in the tires and air bags, he checked the oil level and installed a new hour gauge for the generator. He also did some maintenance on the tow dolly. We spent a couple of hours getting things ready, still more to do tomorrow.

For dinner I made tacos using the taco meat we bought at Aldi, they were very good.

In the evening we watched a Sherlock Holmes movie we own. I always enjoy watching the movie. Then we watched a couple of episodes of Boston Legal. Afterwards I watched a few episodes of Bones.

Relaxing in front of the television


Sunday, December 22, 2019

Saturday 12-21 First Day of WInter

Today was the first day of winter. We had sunshine and got up to 60 degrees.

We hung around the house most of the day. I did laundry and did my Solitaire World Tour of 30 challenges. Larry was back to working on organizing our Amazon photo collection.

After lunch we went to the storage center and picked up the Minnie, we also brought the tow dolly for the car to the house.

In the evening we rented a movie called Jumanji, The Next Level. It was a funny adventure movie that takes place in a jungle. The first Jumanji was made in 1995 starring Robin Williams and the sequel was made in 2019 starring Dwayne Johnson. This sequel was called The Next Level. Then I watched a few episodes of Bones.    

Saturday, December 21, 2019

Friday 12-20 Culture Activities Center

Dreary Day

It was overcast all day. In the afternoon it sprinkled. What should we do today?

One of our friends on Facebook, Barb, put up some pictures that were on display at the Temple Culture Activities Center. We hadn't been to the Culture Activities Center in a long time so we decided to go and check out the art on display. The main lobby contained art that was done with charcoal and Graphite. They were outstanding. A couple of artists art that were on display were Tom Peiser and Crystal Orlando. After walking around the lobby we went into the gallery where the entire room was art by Jill Shipman. She had a lot of talent. Then we walked down the halls and saw some great photography by Johnny Shipman. We climbed the stairs to the second floor and found an exhibit on the history of the Culture Activities Center. We walked around the building for about an hour and had a very pleasant experience.

Charcoal & Graphic Drawings of Faces by Crystal Orlando 

Three bunnies by Crystal Orlando

One of Jill Shipman painting on display

House of Fire by Johnny Shipman

"Game Plan" by Tom Peiser

Once at home we spent the rest of the day hanging around the house. Larry finished working on our Fire TV, well maybe not finished, he loves to tinker with things like this. I worked on my puzzle. 

In the evening we watched a new Amazon movie called The Aeronauts, it was about a female balloon pilot and a scientist making discoverings. It was a good movie except that it was a little slow. Then we watched an episode of Off the Cuff. This episode was about street car racing in Chicago. Then I finished the fourth season of Bones and started the fifth season. We had a very good day.     

Friday, December 20, 2019

Thursday 12-19 Weekly A2 Dance

Super Day!!!!

We spent the day hanging around the house and keeping warm. 

I finished my book yesterday so I worked on my jigsaw puzzle. Before doing this I did the Free Cell Adventure, which had 20 FreeCell Solitaire games. While I was doing the Solitaire games Larry played with our photos on Google and our Fire TV.

In the evening we met up with our Thursday night A2 tape group at Sun City. We met with them at 5:00 and did an hour and a half of C1. We had a square plus three extra people. We had a great time dancing to the tapes and some of them were very challenging. Then we danced another hour and a half of A2. We had two squares plus an extra person. A couple of the dancers brought in snacks, that were Christmas sugar cookies, a box of chocolate covered nuts, raisins and cherries and a can of brownies and cookies. We had a super evening of dancing with friends and tapes.

Thursday, December 19, 2019

Wednesday 12-18 Cold Front

It was cold all day. At least the wind went down and temperature was back in the low 50s.

I finished reading the first book of a six book series of Grantchester. We watched the series on PBS for many years and liked it. It was about a young vicar named Sidney Chambers, who investigates murders with Inspector, Geordie Keating. The television series was based on the book series and was very close to the book. It was an easy read book. Then I took a nap for a couple of hours. Afterwards I worked on my jigsaw puzzle.

Finished the first book of Grantchester

While I read Larry rebuilt our Fire TV. Once he rebuilt the Fire TV, he made sure that it worked correctly. Then we watched our YouTube videos.

In the evening we watched Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. Then we watched an episode of Off the Cuf: Subtropolis- The World's Largest Underground Business Complex. This episode was about an underground complex in Kansas City, that is 150 feet underground and is a 55 millions square foot cave. It was very interesting. Then I watched a few episodes of Bones.

Relaxing in front of the television
Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them

Wednesday, December 18, 2019

Tuesday 12-17 Dentist Appointment

Cold Front

Today was cold with a strong northwest wind. The good news is the temperature did get up to 50 degrees.

We started the day out by going to town. Larry had a followup appointment with his oral surgeon on how he was doing after the tooth removal and implant. When we got to the dentist office the waiting room was full but by the time we left it only had a couple of patients. The dentist said everything was going well. Larry isn't finished, he has to go back in three months. Then he'll have to go someplace else to get a crown put on the implant.

Dentist appointment

Before going home we made a couple of stops. First stop was at Great Cuts so Larry could get a haircut. While he was getting his haircut I went next door to The UPS Store to get our mail. It was very busy, there were two lines and they were all the way to the door. Larry had remembered to give me the key to the mailbox so I didn't have to wait. We didn't have any packages so I was in and out very quickly. The hairstylist was very friendly. After Larry's haircut we went across the street to the HEB to do a little grocery shopping.

Weekly grocery shopping

Time to get a haircut

In the afternoon I read and Larry continued working on our photos. I also did The Medium Mayhem, which was 20 medium level games of Solitaire. 

Larry started to work on a Fire TV project. He decided he needed more memory, he ordered it online from Best Buy. In a few minutes we received an e-mail that said it was ready to be picked up. Off to Best Buy we went.

In the evening we watched an Amazon movie called Noelle. It was about a priest, who was sent to a small town to shut down the Catholic Church. It was a good movie. Then we watched a couple episodes of a series called Off The Cuf. It's an Amazon documentary series starring Harris Dirnberger, Chris Parr and Tyler Chadey. It has six short stories on unique small towns in the United States. We watched Slab City and Green Bank. It's a good series because it talks about why people live in these unique towns. Then I watched a few episodes of Bones.     

Tuesday, December 17, 2019

Monday 12-16 Cold Day

It's cold

We started the day out with rain. It didn't get out of the 40s with wind out of the northeast.

For more than 30 years we slept in a waterbed, one of the things you grow to love about a waterbed is the heater, it keeps the bed nice and warm. Awhile back we switched from the waterbed to a Sleep Number bed which doesn't have a heater. Everytime we get into bed it's cold. We tried using an old heated blanket that we had laying around but it didn't help much. Larry found that some folks really liked having heated mattress covers. He ordered one and we received it yesterday. It has a controller for each side of the bed, we started off with it at 7 and it was really nice and warm when we got into bed but it was too warm for sleeping. We now set it at 2, it is still warm when we get in bed and comfortable for sleeping. The mattress cover controllers run for 10 hours and then turn off, perfect for a good night sleep.

I got up with a headache caused by allergies. I made breakfast and then went back to bed. While I was sleeping Larry continued working on Amazon photos. We have so many photos that it's going to take him a long long time. By the time I woke up it was time for lunch. I made Campbell's soup.

Fighting allergies
After lunch we went to town to do a little Christmas shopping. In fact we finished it up. Then we went back to the house.

Christmas shopping

While hanging around the house I read and Larry continued his photo project. We watched our YouTube videos. 

In the evening I wrapped the Christmas gifts. Larry strolled through our Amazon movie list and didn't find anything that sound interesting. So he went through our dvds and we decided to watch Top Gun. We hadn't watched it in a long time. It is just as good as before. I didn't realize that it was made in 1986. It starred Tom Curse, Meg Ryan, Tim Robbins and Anthony Edwards. Then we watched an episode of Boston Legal. I watched a few episodes of Bones. I did my daily challenges.    

Monday, December 16, 2019

Sunday 12-15 Christmas Dance

We woke up with fog. It stayed in all morning. We spent most of the day hanging around the house. I worked on my jigsaw puzzle and did my daily solitaire challenges and The World Tour Solitaire challenge of 30 games. Larry has been working on some electronics projects, one was Amazon Photos. The photos he has in the cloud have people misidentified so he worked on that.

We watched an episode of GizWiz and our YouTube videos we follow. 

Every year during the month of December the Sundancers have problems getting a room for their weekly Monday dances because other clubs have their Christmas parties. This year the club was able to get a room today. They have a dinner before the dance. We just attend the dance. This evening the dance started at 6:30 and was over at 9:30. Brad Caldwell called the tips and Lucy and Jerry Pate cued the round dancing. We started the dance with a grand march and had eight squares. For the rounds there were ten couples. We had five couples for an A2 tip. The club members had snacks for refreshments. One of the tips we formed an all girl square. I participated in it and we all had a super time. Some of the dancers dressed up for the Christmas Dance. We had an outstanding evening dancing with friends and to Brad.  It was nice watching our round dancing friends dancing to Lucy and Jerry.

Brad Caldwell calling the dance
Dancing with Friends

Friends waiting to start dancing

Friends having fun dancing to Brad

Friends enjoying the dance

Dancing with friends in an all girls square

Left to right (Lucy, Jerry, Paula, Billy, Ramona and Dave) having fun dancing

By the time we got home it was 10:00. Larry read his e-mail and then went to bed. I stayed up and started watching the fourth season of Bones.