Saturday, September 17, 2011

September 17 2011


            Yesterday I found out that my sister, M.A.C., had been taken to the hospital.  That sounds simple, right?  It was not simple to find out.  We stopped to visit her at her apartment and were told that she was not home.  When I ask where she had gone, the reply was, “that’s all I can legally tell you.”  When I pressed for a better answer I was told to call her daughter.
            When we tried calling my niece, K.A.H., she did not know anything about it.  She said to call her sister, G.A.C.  Every time we called her number we got a “the circuits are all busy, please try again later.”  We tried leaving a message on Facebook for her but received no response.  When K.A.H.’s husband returned from work, he knew what was going on because he works in the same place as G.A.C.  Niece K.A.H. called when she found out where her mother was.  So, after a very twisted route, I finally found out where my sister was and why she was in the hospital.
            This morning, after dropping Ella at work, I went to the hospital and visited with her.  This is the same complaint that has taken her to the hospital twice before.  They have not been able to find anything wrong (at least nothing new and nothing that would cause the symptoms).  Sis’ thought that they would send her home today.  I hope that they don’t send her home without discovering what is causing her the pains in her chest.
            After I left the hospital, I stopped at Hammer Medical and bought a knee brace for myself.  Amazing! I spent about $40 for an elastic tube with a hole in it.  But, I have it on and my leg feels about 80% better.
            When I got back to Cutty’s I was just a couple minutes late in getting to the “Cutty’s Hall Meeting” (town hall meeting for a non-town community).  This will be the last monthly meeting until around Memorial Day of 2012.
            After the meeting, I came home and boxed up more knick-knacks.  These will not be moved into the new trailer.  What I envision happening is:  When we are notified that the new trailer is ready, we will unload a bunch of stuff from the old trailer onto the patio.  Then I will have the old trailer moved to storage.  While our site is empty of trailers, I will have a load of gravel brought in to level the drive.  Once that is done, we’ll set the new trailer on site and haul everything in from the patio.  We’ll see what the reality turns out to be!
            We are waiting for oldest daughter, L.A.B. to come and pick up Ella for the bridal shower this evening.  Shortly after they have left, I will head off to church where I am preaching tonight.
(insert pause here)
            I’m home from church.  We had a very small turn out tonight.  But we had fun!  Since Pastor Lee and Cathy were not there to sing in the Praise Band, they ask me to sing with them.  I did.  I’m sure that the people who stayed away did NOT know that I was going to sing, so I am not offended by their absence. (Grin)
            Ella has not returned home yet.  I have no idea when this bridal shower will be over.

Friday, September 16, 2011

September 16 2011


            I awoke about 5 o'clock this morning. 
            It was very warm in the trailer.  So, I went down to check the electric fireplace/heater and found it was 82 degrees. I turned the heat down and then went back to bed.  When I got up later this morning and found it was now 85 degrees.  As it turned out, I hadn't turned the heater down all I had done was to turn down the intensity of “flames”.
            There is a large RV show at the Iowa State Fairgrounds this weekend.  Normally we would be part of the crowd climbing in and out of trailers and motor homes.  However my legs are hurting and not up to the task.  Also, we just bought one.
            This being Friday, we had breakfast with friends on Des Moines’ eastside.  Since we did not go to the RV show (also on the east side), we stopped and picked up a card and gift for the bridal shower this weekend.
            That was the most that we did all day. 
            This was a sit home and vegetate day.
            (If you think that this was boring to read … you should have lived it)

Addendum
I had just finished typing this when the church secretary called to say that she could not find the music for one of the hymns I selected for the Saturday service.
So, I went on line and found the sheet music.  I gave the secretary the URL and she will print it for the musicians in the Praise Band.  There, now I have accomplished something today.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

September 15 2011


           Brrrr!  45 degrees this morning!  Welcome to the middle of September feeling like the middle of October.
            To add to the solar heating capacity of our east-facing windows, I took down the screen room and rolled up the awning over the patio.  When Ella wakes, I’ll have her help fold the screen room canvas before putting it into storage.  The sun is so bright this morning that it should keep us plenty warm without running the furnace or heater.  Before going to bed last night, I turned on the electric fireplace/heater.  It was a comfortable 74 degrees when I checked the inside thermometer.  Now that the sun is shining in, I’ve turned the heater off again.
            The coffee is done perking and I’m ready for breakfast now.  So, insert a mental pause here.
            It is now close to 6 p.m. and I am back to the computer.  We skipped supper tonight because we went to Ryan’s Steak House for lunch.  Between 1 and 3 p.m. the buffet with drinks for two seniors comes to a little over $11.00.  It is such a great value that we try to go for lunch at least once a month. (And NO I am not paid to say that – I’d take pay – but no one is offering)
            We did more cleaning and tidying our patio area today.  It was a great day to be outside and working.  We also spent time visiting with some of our neighbors.  Dave & Grace will be heading south in another month so we spent quite a bit of the late morning and early afternoon visiting with them.  Later in the afternoon, Mark saw me out working on the patio and stopped by for a visit.  He was wondering if we were moving.  I explained that “yes & no” we were preparing to switch trailers but staying on the same spot. 
            Today we picked up the mail from our box.  We tend to forget about it for a week or so at a time.  Sometimes the mail box is pretty tightly crammed.  I have several large envelopes from the Social Security people.  I haven’t opened them yet but I know what they are because Ella has already received her packets earlier.  They are information about getting set up for Medicare.  The more I read about the various plans, the more confused I get.  Ella had checked with the pharmacy at Walgreens and found that we can schedule a time for a councilor to do a one on one explanation of the various plans.  This sounds really good.  However, we have had some many things screwed up by this branch of Walgreens that I would not trust their advice.  I may check into some of the other Walgreens in the area for this service.
            We did some shopping at Home Depot today also.  We purchased several buckets of Damp Rid to put in the two trailers.  Condensation is a real factor to be considered when wintering over in an RV in Iowa.  Moisture can build up from cooking and just from breathing in such a small sealed space; much more so than in a sticks and bricks home.
            Ella has been saving empty boxes from work at the club house and brought some of them home.  I will spend some time this evening packing away part of our Santa knick knacks.  I might as well get started on that now.

Pockets: the Beginning of Greed.


           Imagine a world without pockets.  Imagine a world without purses, wallets, bags, boxes or luggage!  Imagine not being able to take your ‘stuff’ with you!  Does the thought make you uncomfortable or does it make you liberated?
            Very early one morning this week, I woke with this strange thought in my head, “pockets are an invention of the Devil!”  You see, if a person has no pockets and they find an interesting stone.  They may stop and admire it.  They may pick it up and examine it more closely.  They may drop it back to where it was or toss it away.  If a person with pockets sees and interesting stone, they may also do all of those things.  However, they may also put it into their pocket.
            Once it is in their pocket, it becomes “theirs”.  That which was accessible to everyone now becomes property.  Property needs to be protected, defended, cared for, added to, and admired.  From the simple step of putting into a pocket, all kinds of potential sins can arise: greed, lust, hate and more.
            The Devil is often so subtle with his temptations.  Perhaps pockets are an invention of his.

Matthew 6:19 “Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal:


Wednesday, September 14, 2011

September 14 2011 part two


            Men’s Bible study was interesting this morning.  A clip from the last few minutes of the movie “Death Becomes Her” was played.  This led us into a discussion of our thoughts and feelings on aging, dying, and eternal life.  After the meeting several of us stayed behind to set up tables and chairs for the Wednesday after school program, UP Kids.
            Ella was instrumental in starting the UP Kids program several years ago.  It was meet with lots of questions and some resistance when it was first purposed.  It started with just a hand full of elementary age kids.  It has now grown to twenty-five elementary and middle school kids.  The older group has named themselves Accidental Angels.  Our church bus goes to the various schools in the area and picks up the children who participate.  We have a waiting list from parents who want their kids to be part of the group.  However, at this point, transportation time and adult volunteers has forced this cap of twenty-five.
            L. and I spent most of the morning watching Disney Junior TV.  She and I would do some of the things along with Mickey Mouse and gang. 
            Just before lunch, Great-grandma decided it was necessary for us to go to Wal-Mart.  She claimed it was because we needed to pick up furniture polish and bedding supplies for the Hitch Hiker.  However, I knew it was to pick up the two pound bag of Werthers candy.  We also purchased a frozen pizza and a package of ice cream sandwiches.  The pizza was for lunch and the ice cream for after school snacks.
            Grandson B. got out of DMACC early because he had a test which he finished early and was free to go.  When it was time, he and I went to school to bring C. home.  Shortly thereafter, Ella and I came home and she is now at work.
            After nine this evening we will be getting together at Village Inn for pie with friends.

September 14 2011 part one




            The alarm was set for 5:45 this morning.  However, I was awakened around 5 with the soft sound of rain on the roof.  Today is supposed to be a transitional day in the weather.  By that they mean instead of highs in the low 90s today’s high is to be in the mid 50s.  They are predicting ‘patchy areas of frost’ for this evening. 
            Today we should be able to spend the whole day with L. as she has no preschool today.  I wonder what I will learn from her today.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

September 13 2011



           
            Yesterday, after getting L. off to preschool, we came home and I did a lot of work getting the present trailer (Road Ranger) ready to move into storage.  There is a lot to be done ‘inside’ the trailer yet.  However, 90% of the outside work has been done. 
            I had previously built a ‘dog house’ to enclose the area under the fifth-wheel overhang.  That is a great place to store stuff you don’t need often.  Yesterday, I disassembled the ‘dog house’ and removed all the stuff from under the front end.  Some was moved to another storage area and some was trashed.
            As soon as I had gotten the stuff into storage, it was time to head to church for an Administrative Council meeting.  We are starting to get the reports done for the Church Charge Conference coming on October 15th.  In previous years I had to do a lot more work on all those reports; collecting data, printing sorting, stapling, and distributing.  This year I just need to work with the Worship Committee getting a budget prepared for next year.  The budget and the work we did last night is the end of my duties on this year’s forms.

            I awoke around four this morning with a strange thought running through my mind.  I was thinking about the evil that pockets have caused in this world.  I will have to write out the entire dissertation and post it on my other blog.  www.thomasewilliams.blogspot.com  
            Since I was awake early anyway, I checked on my checking account balance and found that the money, which Ella pulled from her retirement account, had been deposited into the bank.  That means that today we can go to the RV dealer and give them the final check for the Hitch Hiker.  We will do that sometime between taking L. to preschool and picking up C. from school.

            Insert passage of time here

            We dropped L. off at preschool and went to Autorama and gave them the rest of the money for the Hitch Hiker.  Yeah! It is officially ours! We spent some time in the HH checking out things like placement of towel holders, how high the entrance door is from the ground and where the wheels are in relation to the front of the unit.  We also looked, briefly, through the stack of documentation that the previous owner(s) had left.
            Autorama has not started with the detailing of it and most likely will not until after the weekend.  There is a large RV show at the State Fairgrounds and they will be too busy with the show to get much done on our unit. 
            That’s okay with me because I still have enough to do in the Road Ranger before we move it.  We have a lot of knick-knacks that need to come off the shelf and be put away.  Because of the weight, I may need to move the books and bookshelf out of the slide-out before closing it.  The kitchen items from the counter tops will just get moved into the Hitch Hiker.  Some things I can’t move until I know that we’ll have the HH here because they’ll be in the way.
            On the way home from the dealer we grabbed a quick drive-thru lunch and made it back to the grandson’s place about a half an hour from time to pick C. up from school.  After picking up great-granddaughter number one, we went to the preschool to get L.  We had to wait about a half an hour for her school to let out. 
            It was nearly 4 p.m. when we left for home.
            Ella worked tonight, as usual, and had to do a quick change once we got home.  The girls colored in coloring books and played with bubbles for just a little while before daddy came to get them.  C is playing soccer and N is coaching her team.  Tonight was a practice so he had gotten off work a little earlier than usual.
            After Ella, N and the ‘greats’ were gone; I loaded the fifth-wheel receiver back in the back of the pickup.  I’m not strong enough to lift that thing.  However, I am smart enough to know how to use leverage to ‘walk’ it up stacked cement blocks and onto the tailgate of the truck.  Then, using more ‘walking’ and a little grunting I got it locked into place.  The plate part of the receiver has gotten rusty over the last several years of non-use.  So, I got out the cordless drill and a wire brush to polish it up a little.  I will still need to get one of the Teflon pads to go between the receiver and the pin on the trailer.
            By the time I was finished and cleaned up a little, the hungrys had me.  So I went to Subway and ordered a foot-long roast beef with everything except onion (for me) and jalapeƱos (for Ella).  Then took the sandwich over and shared supper with Ella.  It was only about forty-five minutes until the end of her shift so I stayed and watch television at the clubhouse until we could come home.
            It’s been an eventful day.  I’m trying to remember the last time I wrote a check that had five figures on it!
            Tomorrow is a five-forty-five morning so I’m off to beddy bye!

            

Monday, September 12, 2011

September 12 2011

What a busy couple of days!
On Friday we went back to the RV dealer's and took more photographs of the new fifth-wheel.  We will not get to take it home for a while (well, they selfishly want to get their money first) and they have some prep work to do on it also.
I wanted to measure all the windows so that I can replace the venetian blinds with sun-blocking roller shades.  Since we are going to be spending winters under the Texas sun with non tinted windows, I want something that will actually keep the sun and heat out of the trailer.  Blinds just don't really accomplish that. Plus, they are terrible dust collectors.
Saturday afternoon, after Ella was off work, we went to some friends' fiftieth wedding anniversary.  We were only able to stay for a short time because we were going to our Saturday Praise Service.  We also needed to pick up some KFC for the pot luck after church.
On Sunday morning, Ella went to work and I went to church where I was liturgist.  From there I rushed home to change clothes and go to a meeting of the Activities Committee meeting at Cutty's Des Moines Camping Club.
The committee reviewed and evaluated the special events from this past camping season.  From there we decided what ones to repeat of reject for next year.  We also came up with some themes for weekends next year.  We sill meet later to flesh out the the ideas.
It was after three when I got home.  Ella had not eaten lunch either, so we made a quick sandwich and lay down to read/watch TV.
Somewhere in the last couple of days (I couldn't tell you when) we stopped at WalMart and had prints made from the pictures of the Hitch Hiker.  Late on Sunday evening, we visited with the Stones (Tom and Sue) and showed them the photos.  We stayed until it was time to go home and to bed.
Grandson N. called and asked if we could come early Monday to watch the girls and get them off to school.  This wasn't a regularly scheduled babysitting gig.  However, where the 'greats' are concerned, we can be somewhat flexible.
So we got C off to school as soon as she arrived at N's.  Now we are waiting until time to take L. to preschool.