Our view

Our view

Thursday, April 30, 2015

Visiting An Old "Home"

Tin and I went to Camp Pendleton in Oceanside, CA.  It is the second largest Base in the United States and when you enter the Front Gate at the Marine Corp base there are several options you can go on Base.  There is the Ocean and Beach to the west, mountains and a lake to the north, the south is the shopping area of the base and to the east is more of a desert type area.  In the middle is where a lot of the business of the Marine Base happens.  It runs from Oceanside, CA all the way up north to San Clemente, CA and from the Pacific Ocean to Fallbrook, CA to the east.  We call it "home" because we spent several weeks through out the past four years living at the Lake O'Neill Campground.  So when we entered the base yesterday we had a sense of being home.  We had lunch at the lake and then drove around the campground just for old time sake.  It was a good day!

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

The Crops Are Growing

I received some pictures yesterday from Lisa of some of the trees that are starting to show some fruit.  The apple and cherry trees are looking good.  The young blueberries look great and hopefully will I will get a chance to taste them.  The beds for veggies, corn and beans are ready and waiting.  Looking at the layout at the orchard it looks like there will be a lot of crops to harvest this year.  There is nothing better than home grown goodies! Yummy!

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

What Rain Will Do

I received some pictures from Lisa yesterday with picture of the farm.  I cannot believe how green everything is.  Lisa said that they have been having a lot of rain lately and it show.  The grass and trees are vivid green and flowers are really beautiful.  By the time we get back to the farm I am not sure what it will look like but I do know that it should still be green.  Yesterday was the first day with sun for the last several days so I know the sun and blue skies were a welcome sight.  Keep checking  back and see what else happens in our absence. 

Monday, April 27, 2015

I Don't Miss Traffic

Now that we have come to California, especially Southern California, Tim and I have realized how much we don't miss traffic and that living the rural life is so relaxing.  The traffic here is terrible. Maybe it seems worse because we have not had to deal with it.  The interstates are like NASCAR races during a crash; crowded and fighting for positions.  You cannot drive anywhere without getting stuck in traffic.  I will no longer complain about sitting behind 5 cars in Newport anymore!

Sunday, April 26, 2015

Just A Quiet Day

I guess not much happened at the farm yesterday as I did not get any news from Lisa.  It was a lazy quiet day for us in Carlsbad.  I guess all the traveling has caught up with us and Tim, Pam and I just sat in the family room and watched a VH-1 special on Saturday Night Live.  They started with the first 5 years then moved on to the 80's and 90's.  It was actually fun watching the clips to all the shows and we found ourselves laughing a lot.  Peyton came over around 2:00 and then at 3:30 we headed north to Laguna Niguel to be with my Mom, Craig and Karyn for the evening.  It was nice to have some down time for the day!

Saturday, April 25, 2015

The Farm Has Its First Fruit

i received a picture from Lisa yesterday showing me the first fruit of the season.  It is a tomato.  I know I always thought the tomato was a vegetable but it is technically a fruit.  On one of the tomato plants was hanging a small green tomato.  If you know me then you know I love any tomato byproduct but cannot stand the fresh tomato itself.  So I am very happy for George and Lisa for the first tomato and the fact that I will be missing out on eating it with them.  Enjoy it!

Friday, April 24, 2015

My Mom Was Very Happy

My Mom was one happy lady yesterday.  She had a surprise, Tim and I, went to lunch with a family friend at the Cheesecake Factory, got to FaceTime with Jenny and Rory and Nicki, James and Grace.  Talked to my brother Ford, my cousin Julie and my Carrie along with several friends.  My mom's short term memory may not be good but she knew everyone she was talking to and loved every minute.  Rory showed her Great Grandmother how well she could walk and James and Gracie entertained their Great Grandmother with lots of talking and blowing kisses.  When we got back from lunch her home threw her a birthday party with a cake and decorations.  The other ladies living their really liked the cake.  Tim and I spent the rest of the afternoon talking with mom sharing our travel stories and other things.  We met my sister Pam at the train (Brian had to stay home because Gunner was sick) and then met up with my brother and sister in law, Craig and Karyn at Nick's in San Clemente.  The restaurant was nice but a bit loud but we all had a great time for dinner and my mom enjoyed our time together.  We wore her out but it was a good tired feeling for her.  Thanks to all who helped wish her a Happy Birthday!

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Happy Birthday Mom!

Today is my Mom's Birthday and she has a surprise coming that she is not expecting.  My Mom is turning 89 years old today and I feel very lucky to still have her around.  I know these past couple of years have been hard on my Mom in getting older but regardless of her memory loss or hurting body she still loves her children, grandchildren and great grandchildren with her whole heart and is still a mom, grandma and great grandmother.  We love you Mom and hope you have a wonderful Birthday! 

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Animal Farm

We had another great day with Bob and Robin and it will be hard to say good bye but we will be back!  Thank you Bob and Robin for a terrific visit!  We love you guys!  
Meanwhile, back at the farm, it became an animal say for Lisa. In the morning she saw a bunch of deer down in the orchard ratting the grass.  Lisa took several pictures and posted them on FaceBook so check it out. 
In the afternoon she was on the hunt to get a picture of the bird that made a nest behind one of the tool shed's lights.  She noticed it about a week ago but never saw the bird.  Yesterday she snook up one the bird and quietly sat until the bird came out. She then got some pictures.  Way to go Lisa!

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Spring Green

All last week it just rained and rained at the farm but because of the rain the grass and trees have a turned a beautiful Spring green. Now that we are in the southwest where everything is reds, tans and beige seeing the green grass at the farm really looked good.  The one thing that the rains brought also was making the grass grow which meant George had to cut our grass especially on the hill.  Sorry George but also Thanks!
We are having a great time with Bob and Robin.  We spent our day at Zion National Park and Kolob Canyon.  Both are beautiful!  To see the pictures and check out what we did please read my other blog: travelswithruth-ruth@blogspot.com.

Monday, April 20, 2015

Another Season To Deal With?

So when we first moved to the farm in Tennessee we were told about Stink Bug Season and then we learned about Lady Big season.  We did not enjoy either season but we endured it.  Now I come to find out there is a turtle season and it is right now.  I guess the turtles are just popping up everywhere.  Lisa said she saw six yesterday and that was just while she stepped outside.  I just hope they are gone by the time we get, yikes!

Sunday, April 19, 2015

A New Lawn Mower Equals A New Lawn Mower

At the farm there is a new person to mow the lawn.  George bought a new lawn mower (a cub cadet) about a month ago and it worked great cutting all the grass.  Yesterday George taught Lisa how to drive the Cub Cadet and so she mowed most of the orchard while George was clearing another vegetable bed.  With both George and Lisa using the Cub Cadet I can't help wonder if they will argue about who gets to cut the grass going forward.  I guess we will just have to wait and see.
Tim and I spent our day yesterday taking advantage of the Free National Park Week end and visited two National Parks in Utah; Arches and Canyonlands.  To find out what we saw and did read my other blog: travelswithruth-ruth@Blogspot.com.  Go Lisa for learning how to use the new tool aka lawn mower!

Saturday, April 18, 2015

What A Contrast

What a contrast.  While we were in Colorado fighting snow and being in winter again back at the farm Lisa was enjoying a beautiful Spring day.  It did not seem possible when I saw Lisa's Spring Flower pictures posted on FaceBook while we were driving in a snow storm crossing the Rocky Mountains on the Tennessee Pass (elevation 10,400 ft).  We had already passed two rock slides and little did we know there was one more to pass on the other side of the pass.  I realize that we were a minority being in winter again because I know most of the country was enjoying Spring.  Today we leave Colorado, and hopefully winter, as we enjoy Utah for a few days.

Friday, April 17, 2015

The Santa Fe Trail

The Santa Fe Trail was a 18th Century transportation route through central North America that connected Franklin, MO to Santa Fe, NM.  It runs through all of Kansas and parts of Oklahoma and southeastern Colorado down into Santa Fe, NM.  It was pioneered in 1821 by William Becknell and it served as a vital commercial highway.  It was a dangerous highway due to Indian attacks, snakes and the weather.  Today you can still take the Santa Fe Trail in your car just drive Highway 24, 56 and 50.  We drove several miles of the Santa Fe Trail and it was hard to understand what it would be like in a horse and wagon.  Wow!

Thursday, April 16, 2015

A Change Of Plans Due To Snow

There has been a change of plans to the G1stBRT.  Today we were suppose to drive to Estes Park, CO but due to snow we have had to alter our plans and instead we are going to Pueblo, CO.  We were looking forward to crossing the Rockies through Rocky Mountain National Park but fighting 2 to 3 feet of snow was not in the plan so we will try to hit that on our way back home in June.  Maybe by then the snow won't affect us.  So, instead we will spend more time in Dodge City this morning then drive to Pueblo this afternoon and cross the Rockies through the southern part.  All in all we should still have a beautiful drive.  Check back and see and don't forget to read my Travels With Ruth blog:
I have a really interesting story about American's First Serial Killers and in all places in Kansas!

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Away We Go!

Today we begin the second leg of our journey and head west to Dodge City, KS.  I have not been to Kansas so it will be another State to check off the list.  Only two more States to go to see all 50.  Alaska and North Dakota will be a while before I get to visit those States.  We have had a great time in Branson and with family!  Thanks Mom and Jim, Bill and Chrissy and Rick and Kelly for making our time here in Branson so special!  Now on with the G1stBRT journey!

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

We Have A Plan

We have discovered a way to keep the birds from running across the roof of our RV and we found our inspiration while we were at Silver Dollar City.  While we were there we saw a tree that had a bunch of pots and pans hanging from its branches. It is called a Cacophony Tree.  The Hillybilly Wind Chime includes Pots, pans, rolling pins and ladles and the combination of the sounds it makes keeps the birds away and the bugs at bay. So when we get home we may be making our own Cacophony tree.  I hope George and Lisa won't mind!

Monday, April 13, 2015

We Found Something George Wants!

We spent our afternoon with Tim's Brother, Rick, and his fiancé Kelly.  We went over to the Springfield Botanical Gardens to walk around the gardens. At the gardens there is the Gray/Campbell Farmstead where the oldest house in Springfield is located (circa 1856).  At the Farmstead there was an amazing  outhouse that would look great at the farm.  George wants an old Outhouse for decoration and we have found it.  I wonder how much trouble we could get in if we "borrowed" it?  I guess I will not find out, sorry George!  We had a great time and even learned some history of Springfield.

Sunday, April 12, 2015

Farming At The Farm

While we are away George and Lisa spent a successful day farming.  They got the vegetable beds ready for growing a huge array of fruits and vegetables such as cantaloupe, watermelon, an assortment of lettuce, tomatoes, cucumbers, squash, corn, green beans, peas, broccoli, carrots, peppers, and more.  An herb garden is also planned so  harvest time will be wonderful.  When we get back we will help out with the fruits and veggies.  Thanks George and Lisa!

Saturday, April 11, 2015

The New Floors Are In

I have been talking about our trip so far but since this blog really is meant for life on the farm I have an update on the farm so, meanwhile back at the farm, the new floors are in.  The new floors I am talking about are the wood floors in George and Lisa's house.  If you remember we helped pick out the floors back in February and George and BJ have been working very hard in laying the wood floors.  It looks great and they hand picked each board and placed it to create a one of a kind floor.  So, with the floors down their house is almost complete; just some trim work left.  Great job George and BJ and what a nice surprise for Lisa to come home to.

Friday, April 10, 2015

Getting Wood Cut At Lowes

We went to Lowes yesterday to pick up siding for the storage closet that Tim and Jim were building at the new condo.  They had decided to have some of the sheets of siding cut at the store to the sizes they needed for easier transport and ease of building in the area they were building the storage closet. At Lowes they have this really cool machine that they place the siding on.  It is huge and it is really neat how it makes the cuts easily.  Okay, it was new and cool to me.  The closet turned out great and I saw something new!

Thursday, April 9, 2015

Furnishing A Condo

As we moved my in laws into one condo we also helped in getting furnishings into another condo.  Moving from a house to a condo is a big adjustment.  Besides having to downsize they also need to sell unwanted items.  So instead of selling the furniture they are using their furniture not going to the new condo to furnish the condo for sale and now sell it furnished.  Since Branson is a vacation Mecca  furnished condos sell better because they can then be rented to vacationers.  So Mom C and I spent the morning looking for some extra furniture and we could not believe it but found some great pieces at second hand stores!  Now all we have to do is finish decorating the condo and it will be ready to sell!

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Moving In To Two Condos

We spent our first full day in Branson moving my in laws into one condo and moving some of their furniture into another condo they own and is for sale.  In moving into their new condo they now also have a house for sale.  So, if  you are looking for a place in Branson or perhaps a vacation home there is now two places available.  The house has three bedrooms and two baths.  It is located in the Indian Point area of Branson and very close to Table Rock Lake.  The Condo has two bedrooms and two baths and is located in the west end of Branson near the Dam.  If you are interested in either contact Keller Williams Realty in Branson.  Ask for Kathy Clark.  Check back tomorrow to see what fun we will have today!

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Now I Know It Is Spring

Now I know it is Spring because I saw my first robin today.  We stopped at a rest sto in Tenneessee and as I was walking to the car there was a robin at the end of the side walk just kind of standing around.  As I moved a little closer to get a picture it did not seem to bother it.  So I took a couple of pictures and I realized that now it feels like Spring.  Welcome Spring!
We left the farm really early yesterday and drove the 12 hours to get to Branson.  We hit one snag along the way where a bridge was closed but Tim figured out a detour to get us back on the route we needed to take.  We jhad a great night with Mom and Jim; it is great to be back in Branson!

Monday, April 6, 2015

Here We Go!

We are on the road and headed West!  The G1stBRT journey has begun!  The Grandparents 1st Birthday with Rory Trip is the new name of this trip and we are so excited to begin this trip.  It feels weird pulling out and not pulling the RV but we know our opportunities for stopping at whatever we want will put a special twist to the trip.  Our first stop is Branson, MO to visit Mom C and Jim!  Branson is like going home since Tim was raised around the Branson area.  So Mom, here we come!

Sunday, April 5, 2015

Happy Easter

Happy Easter!  I hope you all have a blessed one.  This is our first Easter at the farm and it is the first of many.   Last year we celebrated Easter in Cottonwood, AZ and before that we always seemed to be in Orange Park, FL for Easter when we were traveling.  This is also our last day here at the farm for a couple of months.  We leave tomorrow to start the R1BT journey.
Yesterday we spent the day getting the Crafty Cottage, me, and the Shed, Tim, cleaned up and ready to be closed up for a couple of months.  Today we will spend the day packing, getting the RV ready to be closed up and put the Golf Cart away.  We will be ready to leave bright and early tomorrow morning heading to Branson, MO.  I will be posting daily on this blog but to follow our travels I will be posting on my Travels With Ruth blog (travelswithruth-ruth.blogspot.com) so check it out! 
Have a very Happy Easter!

Saturday, April 4, 2015

Paper Crafting

I love Pinterest, have you been on Pinterest?  It is a great site to get ideas on everything from recipes to crafts, DIY projects to redecorating to travel, etc.  It is a one stop site.  I get some great ideas from Pinterest and yesterday I spent the day creating the ideas I see.  I call it paper crafting because I am using paper to create mugs, utensil holders and candy butterflies.  My sister sent me this great thinlet diecut to make mini treat bags and it works great and I created utensil holders for her next SAS in May which I will be there for.  I also created some paper mugs that is going to used for a "party favor" in honor of Mother's Day which will be Sunday of the May SAS week end.  I did create a couple of special door prizes and one for myself.  It is a four seasons hanging banner that can be up all year long.  I know I have posted several holiday banners that I have made but now I have one that can be hung up all year long.  The final item I made is a paper butterfly that can hold four Hershey Kisses.  It is really cute and I had so much fun making it I ended up making 30 of them.  These will also be used as giveaways at Pam's SAS and maybe some for my mom for Mother's Day.  Yesterday was the last creative day I will have in the Crafty Cottage until we get back from our trip in June.  I guess yesterday the Crafty Cottage lived up to it's name. 
Just two days left, counting today and we leave on the R1BT journey.  I am still looking for some name suggestions for this trip so if you have any please send me your suggestions by commenting below, email, text, messenger or call me.  I will announce the name Monday morning.  If  I choose your name for the trip you will receive a souvenir gift from one of the places we visit which could be from Branson, one of the National parks or Hawaii.  The name of this trip should include Rory's first birthday along with going west to get there and needs to be submitted by 6:00 pm tomorrow.   Good luck!

Friday, April 3, 2015

Getting Prepared

Only three days left, counting today, and we leave for our trip out west.  I have originally named this trip R1BT (Rory's 1st Bday Trip) but decided it sounded like Rory was going on a trip for her 1st birthday so I want to change the name a little bit.  I have named our journeys since we began traveling because it was easy to reference a trip and organize the pictures from it.  We have finalized our itinerary but it is not carved in stone and we have built time in it to allow us to stop and see something along the way.  We were not able to do this when we traveled with the RV because we needed to have reservations for campgrounds to park at night.  We do not have any hotel reservations made for this trip so we are free to stop when we are ready.  I have the complete itinerary on my first blog, Travels With Ruth, (travelswithruth-ruth.blogspot.com) and will be updating that blog daily while we are on the road.  I will also have daily posts on this blog too.  It will be what we are doing but will also cover things that happen at the farm while we are gone courtesy of Lisa and George keeping us updated.  So, yesterday Tim and I went to Newport to get some things for our trip and  while we were in town we got the car washed; it had been a while.  It was only the second time the car has been washed.  When we got home Tim cleaned out the inside and took out the mud mats and replaced them with the carpet mats that came with the car.  For the next few days we will be washing clothes, getting packed and cleaning out the refrigerator and freezer.  By Sunday we will be packed and ready to depart early Monday morning.  Check my other blog for more trip details!

Thursday, April 2, 2015

First Cut Of The Season

Spring is in full swing here at the farm and so it was time to cut the grass for the first time this season.  The last time the grass was cut here at the farm was sometime in October.  Unfortunately we had a fatality here over the winter.  George's Steiner tractor died and could not be fixed easily so it was retired and pulled to the barn to become a project for a later date.  This meant that George needed to purchase a new lawn tractor.   He did a lot of research and he and Tim visited several places  because he wanted to get something that would work well on the hills with zero turning.  So he ended up purchasing a Cub Cadet mower.  It was delivered a couple of days ago  just in time to mow before the rains hit today.  So George spent a good part of the day mowing the orchard and Tim, using the push mower that he borrowed from George, mowed the hillside that is too step for the Cub Cadet.  Now the grass looks nice again, for about a week, then it starts all over again.  George seemed please with his new Tool, I called it a toy but was corrected, so all is good here at the farm.

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

The New Driveway

The Golf Cart now has its own driveway.  Tim has been working hard creating a drive way.  Since he and George cleared out some trees and brush between the RV and road the area seemed destined to have a driveway for the golf cart.  This way we can get in and out of the "golf cart garage" without driving on the grass.  Driving on the grass is not a big deal unless it is wet then it gets torn up and we are hoping to have a nice lawn again near  and around the RV now that the deck it built and paths and driveways have been created.  Thanks Tim for working so hard in creating the driveway; it will be well used and save the grass!