Sunday, February 22, 2015

Arizona, Mesa - Sunday, February 22, 2015 - Wild Horse Pass Motor Sports Park

Our work schedule this past week was Monday and Tuesday morning and Friday evening because of some people being off.  We are so used to the Monday thru Wednesday morning schedule that the change kind of messed with me.  Hopefully, we’ll be back on the regular schedule this week.
On Saturday we headed out to the NHRA drag races at the Wild Horse Pass Motor Sports Park.  It’s about an hour away from where we are staying.  The weather was beautiful so we enjoyed the ride.

Walking around before the races started we noticed this bright orange car – this picture is for you Kyle.

We also saw a new team from Ray Skillman Ford out of Indianapolis.

Of course we were rooting for all of our favorites.

Brittany Force
Courtney Force
John Force
On Sunday I finished up the alterations to the bedspread.  I took out a huge chunk on each side and bound the cut edges.
Taking the excess material out of the sides makes it much easier to get the bedspread tucked in next to the cabinet and the cut out doesn’t show.

Maybe now I’ll “make the fancy bed” more often.

Sunday, February 15, 2015

Arizona, Mesa - Sunday, February 15, 2015 - Val Vista Villages RV Resort

I’ve been saying for some time that I was going to do something about a couple of problems with our bedspread.  One is the way the corners stick out, not a big problem but they take up some of the “visual” space.
The tailored corners were my solution to that one.

The other problem is this – it is very hard to get the sheet, blanket and bedspread all tucked into the tight space between the bed and the cabinet beside it.  Most of the time I don’t even try, I just fold them all back halfway neatly and put all the pillows on the bed.  But, sometimes I like to do what Greg calls “make the fancy bed” where everything is all pulled up and tucked in neatly.
The solution to this one is going to take more time than the tailored corners.  It will involve taking out a part of the bedspread corner and then binding an inside corner.  So, more on this to come.

We’ve talked before about getting a patio screen, but it wasn’t a priority until the sun started messing with Greg being able to watch the outside TV J.  I know you folks up north don’t want to hear this, but it also helps cut down the heat – it’s been in the low to mid 80’s for a while now.
We got the motorcycle back late yesterday, the problem was caused by a faulty TCA pin – something to do with the throttle.  The pin was $7.00, labor was $150.00 for knowing where to put the pin.  It seems to be running fine now.  We took a short ride after we visited the Commemorative Air Force Museum here in Mesa.


This is a McDonald F-4N, “Phantom II”, a fighter aircraft that was the workhorse of the Viet Nam conflict.
Many other of the planes on display were from the WWII era.
We saw a rescue plane just like this one when we were in Sioux Falls, SD.

Lots of work going on in the restoration area.

We were able to go inside this WWII C-47 troop carrier.  Greg said he didn’t think it looked like this when troops were being transported.

This 1939 Spartan Executive originally owned by Standard Oil really caught my eye.

The 1939 Stinson Model SR-10G “Gullwing” was beautifully done.

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Arizona, Mesa - Thursday, February 12, 2015 - Val Vista Villages RV Resort

Another work week is over.  The Red Hat ladies surprised us at the grill yesterday by having a lunch meeting there, a LOT of them came in all at once and we had no advance notice.  That kept us hopping for a while.

We treated ourselves to a wonderful show last night here at the resort, “Let’s Hang On – Frankie Valli Tribute Show”.  We had some pretty good seats.
These guys did a great job with all of the Frankie Valli songs and more from that era.  The guy on the left was even good with the high notes.
This morning we went up for free coffee and donuts – this happens every Thursday morning along with a resort “happenings” update.  The ballroom is always packed for this but today was even better attended because Camping World was the sponsor and they give out lots of great door prizes.  This picture gives a good view of the courtyard where we work, the grill is to the left and the big open space right next to where we are standing is the dance floor.  They have music every evening from 3-5 during Happy Hour and that dance floor is packed.
After the meeting we headed to the Minute Clinic at CVS to get our measles shots.  Since Arizona is one of the states that has potential of a measles outbreak we decided to get a booster.  From there we were going to a nice looking Chinese restaurant we spotted the last time we were through Tempe and then on to the Arizona State Police office to try to get a copy of the police report on the accident we were involved in in November.
However, the plans after CVS didn’t work out – motorcycle trouble, it wouldn’t accelerate over about 25 mph.  So, picture us on a big ole Harley limping back home at 25 mph hugging the bicycle lane in case it quit altogether J.  I was doing some praying on the back that we would make it back home and not have to push this thing someplace – He watched out for us, we made it back.  The local Harley shop is going to pick it up tomorrow and fix it.

Sunday, February 8, 2015

Arizona, Mesa - Sunday, February 8, 2015 - Cooking Day


I promised to cook today, so Greg boarded me in J.  Not really, but that’s probably what it looks like to the neighbors.  The inside of the door is made up of a panel covered in vinyl to match the dash, etc.  The panel was originally stapled to the door (just barely) before it was installed and it was starting to come loose.  Since we couldn’t restaple it, which would show through the vinyl, Greg decided to glue it.  He had to brace something against it to hold it tight until the glue dried.  It turned out well.
I did go on a cooking binge today.  I won’t have to cook for the rest of the week.  I had washed all of the produce we got at the market when we brought it home, but I wanted to get it into some things we would eat during the upcoming week.  Last night we had the corn on the cob and mushrooms with steaks – yummy.  I made a new recipe with the mushrooms, it turned out really good.

Roasted Mushrooms
1 lb. large to medium mushroom caps, about 8
3 T. olive oil
¼ c. butter
3 cloves garlic, chopped fine
2 tsp. fresh thyme (I used a little over ½ tsp. dried thyme)
1 ½ T. lemon juice
Fresh bread crumbs

Clean the mushroom caps and trim the stems level with the caps.  In a skillet heat the olive oil and just barely brown the cap side of the mushroom, this doesn’t take long.  Remove the caps to an ovenproof dish, stem side up, and wipe out the skillet.  Combine the rest of the ingredients in the skillet and heat until the butter is melted.  Spoon the butter mixture over the mushroom caps.  Top the caps with bread crumbs.  Bake at 400 degrees for 10 to 15 minutes until tender and the bread crumbs are golden.

First on the list for today was potato salad and hard boiled eggs.  The strawberries are sitting to dry off so they can be dunked in chocolate later.
Bacon and sausage have been browned to heat up for breakfasts later in the week.  Some of the sausage might go into spaghetti sauce.  The roma tomatoes, one of the large onions and cilantro (which was just 10 cents a bunch) went into the fresh salsa.

The pickling cucumbers and more of the onion made a nice salad.  The strawberries have been dipped in dark chocolate (it’s supposed to be good for you, right?).  The other dish is a pound of ground beef that has been browned and taco seasoning has been added.

Sugar cookies are ready for the freezer.  The oblong dish that looks like it is filled with gravel is an experiment.  I had partial bags of chocolate chips, butterscotch chips, pretzel sticks, rice chex, rice krispies and raisins.  It seemed that all of those should work well together, we’ll see.

I love the way these jar salads look.  At least a couple of them will be made into shrimp salads in a day or so.

The last thing on the list was making supper for this evening.  We had beef and noodles with mashed potatoes and green beans.  We’ve got leftovers from that and the fridge is stuffed.  The dishes are done and I’m not messing up the kitchen for the rest of the week.

Saturday, February 7, 2015

Arizona, Mesa - Saturday, February 7, 2015 - Val Vista Villages RV Resort

HAPPY BELATED BIRTHDAY TO DAUGHTER ROBYN.  When I don’t post every day I miss mentioning some important events.  We went to Red Lobster to celebrate J
 We finished up the last valance last Sunday right before Super Bowl.
This one was a little harder to get to than the rest.  We’ve been able to do a lot of in-depth cleaning during this process, Greg was hoping we were done with spring cleaning when we were done with this project.
Finding a spot to clean the blinds and screens on this last window was a challenge.
We ended up having about 3 yards of the solid material and a yard of the striped material left over.  I did my best to estimate what we were going to need.  I even went as far as to make graph paper on an excel spreadsheet and laid out the pieces on it.  As it happened I was able to cut more economically than the computer model showed.  Greg says he is sneaking the leftover material into the next patio sale they have here at the resort so I won’t be able to think of another project to do with it.  I know I want to recover the seats of the dining room chairs.
We were talking about how pleased we were with the results – yes, there are a few things we could probably have done better, but for a couple amateurs we think they look pretty good.  I made the comment that “maybe stripes weren’t the best choice for beginners” because we did struggle some to get them to look right.  Greg commented that “we were never going to be professionals at this so if we wanted stripes it was now or never”.

After our work week was done for this week we started in again on some other projects.  Greg replaced the caulk strip around the outside of the shower and recaulked the inside.  We had a small spot that leaked sometimes and the caulk strip wanted to pop out in that spot.  I persuaded him to take the shower doors down so I could do some descaling to them that I can’t do when they are hanging, no matter how hard I try there are some spots I just can’t reach.
After the bathroom, he moved on to learning how to replace screen in a door.  Our door had a couple of tiny holes that you would only notice if you were really looking for them, but we both kind of like to take care of the small things before they become big things.

I decided to tackle the bathroom storage closet.  Everything came out and the shelves were cleaned.  I even ended up finding about three cubic feet of unused storage area after I rearranged all of our labeled boxes J.  People tease me about my labeling and organizing, but it sure does allow for better living in a small space.  For the average person three cubic feet doesn’t sound like much, but when you live in an RV, it is like gold!
With all of that unused space I decided to move on to the closet in the bedroom – maybe something from the closet should go in the bathroom and then I would have room to add a couple of boxes to keep my quilting projects – it worked.  I think we even have enough room to accommodate an inversion table if we decide we want one.

Yesterday we stopped at a market that has just produce, it was kind of like a warehouse atmosphere.  The prices they advertise are so low we were a little skeptical about quality, but we were really pleased.  We loaded up, all of this was $21.  A 5 pound bag of potatoes was $.99, blueberries were $.99 per pint, three large heads of romaine was $1.00.  Needless to say we went a bit overboard so lots of veggies are on the menu for next week.
The temperatures are above average out here now, running in the mid to upper 70s headed for the 80s next week.  That sounds good, but it appears there can be a downside to the warmer weather – scorpions and rattle snakes.  Since we are in the city I wasn’t too concerned about these things, although I did buy a snake bite kit and printed off some info on what to do in case of scorpion or snake bite before we left Indiana.  But, when they started talking about these critters on the nightly news I became a little concerned.  I don’t like bugs of any kind in the house and a scorpion in the house would have just been cause to be a disturbance to the neighbors.  So although I know he was chuckling all the while Greg went to the hardware store for scorpion spray and a blacklight flashlight.  Do you know those little suckers glow under blacklight?  He has now treated around the RV with scorpion spray and the blacklight is in a handy spot.