Friday, September 30, 2016

Routine, I Love Routine

Back from our very short trip and back to the old routine. The old routine feels good, though. It was a nice break. The dogs are ecstatic not to be harnessed and leashed. Something so simple as letting them run out the back door into their own yard is such a pleasure.

Pictures, I did not get many pictures! My girls will throw their hands up and say, "NO, Mom, I don't want my picture taken!" The grandchildren are fair game, though, They will even pose. I haven't even downloaded the pictures yet.

I had a wonderful time with my kids, the actual trip, though ........ We left for home, as scheduled at 9 am. It is a 9 hour drive. We arrived here 24 hours later. The trip there was also filled with pitfalls. I was without internet the entire time and usually had a book talking to me on my ear bud. Read on .....

I have been staring at my husband's butt for hours, and not in a good way. He is on his knees between the driver and passenger seat leaning over the engine of the motorhome. He tinkers away and says some words that won't be repeated. It is 9 o'clock and the Auto Zone is closing. We have been here for over two hours, but rumor has it that we are almost ready to roll again.

Just need to return the tools borrowed from the nice people here and then call upon Siri to get back to the interstate. I should really take the passenger seat again to navigate. He said he did not need my help, but since he managed to veer onto I-80 somewhere south of Des Moines, instead of staying on I-35, I think he could be wrong about that.

I am on the sofa because The dogs are all with me. If I sit up front, they all want to be in my lap. Except for Toni Louise. She thinks the dash is some sort of dog contest runway and wants to prance to and fro, leaving nose smudges on the wind shield in her wake. I have a bag of dog treats close by to lure her back to me.

While I was in charge of the canines, he was getting us lost. In an attempt to get back to I-35, he exited I-80 and while we were sitting at a red light we heard a bang. The belt he tightened earlier broke. Later it was discovered that two belts had snapped. The belt that runs the air-conditioning was not replaced, we didn't need that one.

While replacing the belt he discovered that part of the NEW alternator had come apart. Back in he went to purchase another. By now he is an expert at replacing the alternator. My help is required for this and the belt replacement. A crow bar is implemented and I have to push on the exposed end with my considerable weight strength.

We are back on the road again, after only twelve and a half hours. Remember this is a nine hour trip even in a storm. We are at least 5 hours from home. Add some time to get back on the correct interstate .....

I am tired and hungry. All we have on board is junk food. Road trip food that you munch on while rolling down the road. I want some real food, healthy food, hot food. I think we should eat some decent food and then find a campground and sleep. Or ... even the Walmart parking lot.

Back on the correct route we stopped at a Kum and Go for gas. Iowa has some weird stuff going on! Anyhoo .... we have gas station sandwiches and hit the road again.

At 10:30 HeWho drives finally admitted that he needed to rest. In the rest stop, nestled among the semis also "resting". After the dogs did some business outside I gathered them into the bed with me. HeWho doesn't listen to his wife decided to watch TV on the sofa. He must have dozed awhile. I went to sleep like normal beings do. I woke to movement, but did not venture forth. I was snug and warm between two dogs, with my outstretched hand on another, Toni Louise abandoned us to be with her master.

I woke again at some point when we stopped again. I lifted the blind to see if I could determine our location. I couldn't, so I went back to my fitful sleep. When I woke again we were moving ... a lot. Forward, then in reverse and repeat. The window revealed that we were in the Medical Center in Cameron. I know where we are and that we are headed in the right direction, but how on earth did he take the wrong road and end up here?

I decide to just get up, but lulled by the motion and the knowledge that he at least knows where we are, I doze. Big mistake. Should have followed my instinct. Poor old blind Oscar emptied his bladder ...... right next to me. He had wiggled out of his diaper and despite the towels I had him on, he moved over to me to pee.

I just lay there for awhile. I sopped up what I could. No towels left, I managed to get most of it with my blanket, only to discover that everything was wet. I got up after a bit of feeling sorry for myself and pulled all the sheets and blankets from the bed and changed clothes, while longing for a hot shower.

Seeing me, HeWho loves fast food biscuits and gravy, decided I could use a cup of coffee and stopped at a Hardee's. I harnessed the canines and handed the leads to the bearer of hot coffee. Somewhat restored we traveled on and got home around 9 am. A full 24 hours after leaving my house in Minnesota.

Friday, September 23, 2016

Dead End

The internet has been spotty and totally aggravating. I think I might have some movie streamers here ...... It does make me feel better knowing I knock them off every time I reboot the modem. But, it cuts into my blog reading and commenting.

Besides that I have been busy. We are leaving on Sunday for a short trip north to see our kids and their kids. I am excited about getting away for just pleasure. I just want to sit and stare at my family for awhile.

So, I did all my mowing this morning while it was relatively cool. I was still pretty wet and sweaty. I decided to water my flowers and my feet while I was cooling down. I am sure my face was that beet red color it always is after I exert myself with the mower. I watched the entrance drive as a car stopped on the road and then backed into the drive to turn around. I was congratulating myself for having placed the sign that says "NO TURN AROUND" there.

Then, the woman came through the exit drive. The one that has many signs saying "DO NOT ENTER" and "WRONG WAY". This puzzled me, because I knew the woman could read, didn't she just obey my other sign? I was thinking she would simply go out the entrance, like so many others do .... But, no, she came driving up to me as I was just about to remove my shoes and socks and douse my feet with the icy water spewing from my hose!

She got out of her car and marched purposely to me and demanded to know how she was supposed to get to Kingdom City. Before I could answer she informed me that this road was a dead end!!! She said it like I had personally created a barrier that made the road be a dead end. "You will need to get on the interstate, ma'am." I was trying to maintain a calm attitude. She snapped back, "Well, how am I supposed to do that, this road doesn't go anywhere!"

She was denying me a simple pleasure and I was vacillating back and forth between annoyance and just wanting to laugh at her. I told her to go back to the end of the road, where she had turned onto the road, then turn right and access the entrance ramp to the interstate. She then asked me if I was sure there was an entrance to the interstate .....

There were so many answers in my head and not all of them were nice, so I squelched them and simply said that I was sure. Is this how Siri feels?

I finally wet my feet and my face and arms before coming inside to gather things to load into the RV for the big trip north. I made the bed and loaded our clothes yesterday. Today I was getting other things ..... like my sewing machine and the necessities to hem a homecoming dress for my granddaughter.

First, though I had to put that machine to work. I had to make diapers for the old dog. He is now incontinent. They sell disposable diapers for dogs. But the one that is small enough to go around him is not long enough to cover the necessary part that squirts urine. I even tried a baby diaper after cutting a hole for his tail. That didn't work any better. I went on-line to do a little research and found that they also sell this wrap that simply goes around the abdomen and covers the part that leaks.

These things are spendy, let me tell you! So I just measured my little guy and made a nice soft flannel belt that can hold a disposable pad. He tolerates this much better than having his tail worked through the little hole in the diaper. He was pretty cute in it, but it was useless. Last night was a big success, so I made four more flannel covers. They have Velcro and are so easy to put on. He is pretty happy about this and so am I.

Tomorrow will be a big day, as I have given a key to a kamper buddy. My house needs a good cleaning if I am going to have others see it!! Besides, it will be nice to come home to. I can rest on the 9 hour drive!

Friday, September 16, 2016

Suck It Up And Be A Man!

The baby bananas continue to grow and some new ones have formed under another leaf.

Other leaves have peeled up to reveal new blossoms, but have fallen to the ground. We have had some heavy winds and rains.

In the meantime, the fairy garden is under construction. Lots of colors will be adorning the domiciles of the fairies that enchant the kampground. This one is turquoise and pink. I found the horseshoe when cleaning up a big area of over grown bushes. The rest is popsicle sticks and slats from some lattice I rescued from the dumpster. The popsicle sticks were saved from all the ice cream and popsicles devoured by HeWho does not have to watch his weight. I did have to purchase the paint.

The stumps are from fallen trees on our property. I am nothing, if not cheap thrifty. Just ask my kids. So far I have the doors and windows up on five of the stumps and the sidewalks are going in. I am having great fun!

Well, I was. I decided to pull some weeds in one of my bigger gardens. I had let it go for the summer and the recent rains and cooler weather drew me over to pull the long weeds and grass. The wet ground made it so easy to get the root and I made great headway. HeWho even helped by pulling the big utility cart behind the golf cart and picking up the piles and piles of weeds and dumping them.

What is it about boys and driving things? He was like a little kid, making trip after trip to rake up the debris and haul it off. I warned him to take care of the weeds with wicked thorns. Despite the cooler weather I had sweat running into my eyes, but I was quite determined to finish at least half of the garden.

Maybe the sweat in my eyes prevented them from seeing the dreaded leaves of three and I did not let them be. I did my usual clean up after weeding and washed my hands and arms thoroughly with the laundry soap and I think I would have gotten away rash free if I had done just one more thing .....

I always take the cordless phone out with me, so I won't miss a reservation. Doesn't mean that every call is a reservation, but I answer them all. If I tuck the phone in my pocket, I will accidentally hit buttons and make the phone appear to be off the hook. So I tuck it in my sports bra. I don't know how many times I answered the phone and then stuck it back into my cleavage, but I effectively smeared the nasty poison oil by doing so. From my chin down to below my bra line is a mass of red, itching, highly irritated skin. Not only that, my phone ear and my face is also a mess.

By now my body has absorbed so much Benadryl that it is a wonder I am still coherent. My hands and arms are just fine, remember, I washed them. It took me a couple of days to realize that I needed to wipe down the phone with alcohol. Oddly enough I was enjoying a glass of alcohol when it occurred to me that the phone could be the culprit.

HeWho has a couple of itchy spots on his wrists and legs. His ear and face are fine, since he never answers the phone. He still complains, though. "Boo hoo", I said. "Suck it up and be a man!"

Saturday, September 10, 2016

More about Bananas and a little Aggression about Regression

The apples are ready. The rain and wind threw them on the ground last night. I know, they have spots. But these are organic. No pesticides or synthetic fertilizers here, so you get some spots. They are so sweet and juicy. I can finally open my mouth enough to bite into one!

The banana tree this morning. See the cluster of pink blooms?

It was hard to get a shot from behind, but there are three tiny bananas there with the pink flowers hanging from the bottom.

The blooms are a wonderful shade of pink, the camera does not do them justice. I feel like a proud new parent of triplets!

Enough about bananas. I will let you know what they taste like eventually. I made a trip to the local market today. It was as much to get away from the property as it was to pick up a few necessities. We were out of ketchup, you see. HeWho loves peanut butter also loves to slather his food with ketchup.

Does it bother me that he always puts twice as much as he actually eats on his plate? Why, yes, yes it does. Waste, I hate waste. But, I have come to realize that my nagging does not change anything. I also nag about smoking in my car, but for some reason known only to the smoker, he thinks Febreeze eliminates the odor. It does not.

Is it so much to ask that he not smoke in my car? He brought the car to the front of the building for my use. He has been using my car because the air conditioner went out in his ...... So, why, I wonder was the HEATER on in my car that smelled like cigarette smoke and some strange tropical concoction? It did not escape my notice that the interior of my car is jam packed with all manner of junk. A tire from the golf cart, a saw, a light fixture. A box with what appears to be trash in it and the big cooler used to haul the frozen supplies for the store from Sam's. This was just the top layer. It is, once again impossible to use the cup holders for their intended purpose. Loose coins and all kinds of fuses and electrical junk fill them.

I was pretty annoyed that I had to hunt for a place to put the groceries and then when I got home with them find that the back door behind the drivers seat is malfunctioning. Bad enough that he broke the lever that adjust the back of the drivers seat and I have to ride with my chest in the steering wheel in order to be able to see. It is locked in the position he prefers.

Do not suggest that we trade vehicles. His car can only accommodate one person. The passenger seat is filled from the floor to the top of the seat with various necessities. These necessities cannot necessarily be found, so he just purchases more and adds to the collection. I would not mind cleaning it out and have offered to do so. His car only has one key and it is always on his person, so I can't access the interior.

Same thing with the golf cart. Same thing with his beloved barn. As his messiness is creeping into my domain, I am rebelling. As I was putting away laundry yesterday, I made a new discovery. Apparently, he pulled out two long sleeved T's and decided not to wear either of them. Like a teenage girl he announced that he didn't have anything to wear. I redirected him to the correct shelf that holds no less than 2 dozen short sleeved T's. So, as I was putting away the clean and folded laundry, I found the 2 long sleeved T's wadded together into a big ball and stuffed atop a stack of short sleeved T's.

This regression into childhood will have to stop if he expects to live with me in an RV for the next chapter of our lives!

Friday, September 9, 2016


In my defense .... I was in pain. It is always hard to get a good picture of a group, but I am usually better at it. Jeff's eyes are closed, but the girls looked cute.

I was shocked to see how much they had grown when they got here. Maya, at 12 is turning into a beautiful young woman. Already taller than me, but so much of the world is ...... She was the quiet one this trip. Nose in her phone, she spent much of the time in Grampa's recliner ..... upside-down with her feet on the back. 

Jada was sassier than she usually is. Never satisfied with what was happening, always wondering what was coming next. And, like all big sisters everywhere, she took great pleasure in irritating Zara.

I had planned some crafts for the visit. I wanted to make fairy houses for a garden. Alas, Zara was the only one remotely interested in crafting with Gramma Kathy. I was not feeling so great while they were here, else I would have been more enthusiastic promoting my fairy village. I had dental surgery two days before they came. I had hoped to be feeling better than I was.

Besides the pain and not recovering as quickly as my younger self, I was unaware that I had an infection brewing in one of the excavation sites in my mouth. Zara and I did make a stone cottage. No pictures yet. We used the cylindrical old element from the commercial dryer and some Dollar Tree stones. It turned out really good, if I do say so myself.

Now that I am feeling better, I will finish the garden myself and miss the girls while I do it.

The recent rains have the grass growing and the peppers popping. As if it isn't hard enough to keep up with the mowing, the zero turn is in the shop! Always something.

Kamper Butch gave me this banana tree last year. It now has three babies around it and I think I will even have bananas!! It is hard to see in this picture, but I noticed something different hanging from the tree. It almost looks like an ear of corn.

Here's a better view. It is purplish and looks like a giant ear of corn in the husk, doesn't it? HeWho knows absolutely nothing about gardening has proclaimed it to be a bunch of bananas. But, what else could it be? I seldom listen to his proclamations when it comes to things that grow in the ground. He can stick to the sewer and such.

He once decided to help me with my Spring garden when we lived in Minnesota. I had a lovely assortment of ice blue poppies coming up in a small garden next to the front door. I had babied those tiny sprouts that were just showing themselves from the poppies I had planted the year before. All excited, I was watching them daily.

Came home from work one day to find all of the tiny plants withered and dead on the sidewalk. HeWho was proudly standing there, hoe in hand. He had pulled all my perennial plants and tilled the soil for me to plant. I almost felt sorry for the puzzled look on his face when I burst into tears. No, that's a lie, I didn't feel sorry at all and I didn't cook that weekend either.

Sunday, September 4, 2016

Do You Get It?

Just keep saying that, over and over ..... last holiday weekend of the season. Another long, long day has begun. I found myself eating supper at the registration desk at 8:00 last night. Grabbing bites when I could. Making sno-cones in between checking in a few late comers.

Was I wrong to resent the nap that HeWho took yesterday? Was I wrong to resent the fact that he sat at the table and ate his supper without interruption? Maybe, but there will be pay back today, as I fully intend to escape this desk for a couple of hours today!

Despite the fact that I know precisely how much ice to crush for sno-cones and he will crush way too much ice for any given amount of sno-cones and wastes it ...... I am taking some time away.

I have many signs on display and they can be purchased for a mere $7.50. Most are tongue in cheek, like the one pictured and people will laugh when they read them. I laughed when I painted them.

This morning a group of campers were waiting for the bathroom and wondered in the store. One lady was reading them all .... out loud and slowly, then jabbing her companion in the ribs and asking him if he "got it". If I have to ask HeWho if he got the meaning, it sort of loses something for me, but that is just me.

Here is your funny for the day. I have a sign that says "A Few Plants Short Of A full Flat". The woman read it, but did not do the rib jab. Her companion then read it aloud to himself and looked at me and asked if this particular sign had something to do with England, since he knows they refer to apartments as flats ......

Saturday, September 3, 2016

Don't Make Me Lose The Flip Flops!

See Cujo? Just look at him, thinking that if he simply closed his eyes, his world would return to normal. Cujo is not at all fond of children. He has, in fact, been known to go out of his way to try to bite a child or two. Why, you may be wondering is he not trying to bite Zara, isn't even trying to escape her firm embrace?

Cujo is a smart dog and knows better than to bite someone that Gramma loves. He may not be happy and may be somewhat bewildered at the end of the day, but he knows better.

This is how I feel today. I am nice because I have to be. When did it become okay to be rude and obnoxious as a general rule? When you go into a place of business, do you say, "Hey you, what is your name?" Upon checking into a hotel, do you decide to disregard your room assignment and take another one just because it is empty and the door is open? You don't go ahead and unpack and set up and then become irate when the people who reserved that room show up.

Well, welcome to my world! Because etiquette must just fly out the window when one chooses to go camping! Just one such individual can ruin the entire day. Especially when the day starts before you are even open for business. I have my much loved church group here who have long standing reservations. Do they complain, even though they are standing in line just to use the bathrooms? No, they do not.

I was minding my own business, talking to HeWho rides the golf cart wherever he goes, while I prefer to exercise my legs. I still had at least 20 minutes that were mine before I needed to unlock the door and let the fun begin. A car pulls in, followed by another and I don't even chastise them about not stopping at my stop sign. The window comes down and the man shouts, "Hey, you, what is your name?"

The woman tells me who she is and who she is related to. I ask, "Does THIS belong to you?" and indicate the man. She admits that he does and I tell her she should do a better job of training, since he is rude. Yes, I did. I think he was offended. I consult my seating chart and send him to a particular site and start my day. Before you know it, he is back along with one of my church campers.

Seems there is a camper belonging to my church group already set up and Rude Man is being himself and insisting they move. I go for the quickest solution and tell him to just take the site next to it. I make some sno cones and sell some ice, lots of ice and answer the phone a few hundred times with people trying to camp at the last minute.

I have a particularly sad request for an aunt and grandparents trying to find a place to stay for the funeral of a 22 year old young man. As I study my chart, I see that Rude Man had canceled his reservation! I clearly remember talking to this man several times and he did not want to be "in the midst" of the church people because he likes loud music and he likes to drink (I can testify to that!). We had two long conversations and he called the third time to cancel!!

So, when my two pop-ups come in, he is on one of their sites. They go over and send someone right back, as the riot seems to be eminent. I heard later from another camper that he said things were going to be bad if he had to take his flip flops off. I locked the store and headed over as he yelled at me "What are you doing to me?" I told him that I was doing nothing to him and to go sit down .... much like one would speak to a wayward child. He kept yelling and I stayed calm (outwardly) and repeated myself as I told the nice people in the pop-ups to back out and follow me as I found another site for them.

A nicer site, as it turned out, being far away from Rude Man. My church group is such a nice group of people. Rude Man had not a clue when it came time to put his tent up, so they did it for him. The sun is still up and we have another two nights and a whole day to go.

This is enough for this one day. I have more antibiotics to swallow and more pain to deal with. Just 3 hours to go here and I have no doubt that I will need more pain meds before I lay me down to sleep and wonder why Zara has swim goggles on her head in the picture ...... and who knows what tomorrow may bring. Maybe Rude Man will take off the flip flops ....

Friday, September 2, 2016

All The Little Annoyances

All the things that have the capability to become an annoyance have conspired to visit all at once. It started yesterday. Yesterday I wrote a scathingly brilliant post that Blogger refused to publish, no matter how many times I hit that orange icon. So, what does one do? I hit the save icon and it would appear to have saved my words. Later, though, the words were gone, like POOF into wherever all things go.

As you can guess, I was annoyed when I created the post, because that is when I do my best writing. How ironic was it that that was the best day I have had since the visit to the dentist. My mouth was simply sore yesterday and not throbbing ...... like it is right now as I wait for the Tylenol to kick in. I had my stitches out last Tuesday and discovered that my jaw is sort of locked into place. It makes eating difficult, but maybe I will drop a few pounds. When I am really hungry, I am sure that watching me have to chop everything paper thin to be able to cross my lips and into my mouth is not an appetizing sight. I have to follow up with the dentist in 2 weeks. I have some isometric jaw exercises to do until then.

Yesterday I thought I was opening my mouth a bit wider, but this morning I feel even worse and my mouth is not cooperating at all. My lower extraction area is throbbing, making me wonder if one of my daily pills make have fallen into the cavernous hole and now sits there slowly dissolving. But, I don't have a bitter taste in my mouth and I would think that would accompany the dissolving action.

I had some trouble falling to sleep last night (Hello, Darkness my old friend .....) as my insomnia paid a visit. Could have something to do with the fact that this was the first night I went to bed without benefit of pain meds. I finally succumbed at 3:30 and got up and downed 600 mg of Ibuprofen for the pain in my hip. The pain in my hip could have been due to the configuration of my body, in order to not disturb the canines in my bed.

Got up at my normal time and have been crabby and in pain since. I was looking forward to a cup of coffee and some time to myself before I had to open the door and greet the public ..... didn't happen. As with every holiday weekend, folks start showing up early. I even posted a sign on the front of the building that states check-out is noon ..... therefore check-in is AFTER noon. My store hours are posted, as well, but are disregarded, too.

The phone has been ringing all morning and I doubt it will stop any time soon. I just know that when 9 pm rolls around, it will be going to voice message. Yesterday the phone pretty much did the same thing as I tried to help with the prep mowing. I was just about to close the locked door behind me and head back to finish one of the areas I mow, after taking a reservation, when a truck pulled in and stopped in front of the office.

My hand lingered hopefully on the door knob as I asked the man if I could be of assistance. He slowly dismounted his truck, being a short and nondescript man. He waited until he was down and had shut his door before acknowledging my question, saying he was looking to camp here this weekend. I headed back in, him on my heels and asked what kind of site he would be needing.

When a campground asks you this question, they are looking for specifics, such as 30 amp or 50 amp, full hook-up or just electric, in the sun or in the shade. "Well, now, I liked the one you put me in last time I was here." I ask him to refresh my memory and he tells me he is the brother of the woman that used to work at Local Café. Once again, not the answer I was looking for. After a bit of prying, I found out the general area he had been in and that he needed 30 amp, despite the fact that he was quite sure his 24' travel trailer was a "big un" and would definitely need 50 amp.

I present the site map to him and show him that I only have one site left that met his criteria. I explained that it was a double site and would have a fifth wheel in front of his camper, but that the man occupying the fifth wheel would not be here this weekend. He was incensed! Why could I not put him in the site he liked? "You know I got my little grandchildren! I don't want to be around other people. We got to think of them children!"

At this point my patience had fled and I told him to take it or leave it. He decided to take it and after a long discussion on a secured reservation, as opposed to a non-secured reservation, he finally tossed his Visa card at me and took down the necessary info, all the while thinking I was a good 20 minutes behind my self enforced schedule. 20 minutes of my life I can never get back. Long lost 20 minutes.

When I came back inside I saw the light blinking on the answering machine. Seems the brother of the former waitress of the local café had decided he was not coming after all ...... too many people.

Another message on the machine had me listening to a man and his wife as they drove on the interstate. I know I heard her say to turn left and the man finally left a message saying he was looking for my campground. It was a message that had just been left. I could not make out the number he left on the machine, but I scrolled back and called. The man told me that they were at the state park, having been unable to find me.

I think I saw them drive by. They passed the highway signs and my huge sign in front of the park to get to the state park.

This was yesterday and today is not looking good!