No Mid-Week Crisis This Week!

Fearless, Scout decided to prance around the bed at 5:00 am, announcing he was ready to “go.” Using the latest mountaineering devices, I attached my Black Diamond Venom Adze Ice Axe to the chair and pulled myself out of bed.

I keep it handy for emergencies.

Once sitting on the side of the bed, the cold floor only caused a mild convulsion and a slight scream!  Scout got a great kick out of my painful exit from the bed.

I could see Mary’s eyes flash open and shut as she realized that if she were awake, she might have to go to the cold house to let Scout escape!

After Scout did his business, I returned to bed for an hour, waking at 6:00 am to start the day again!  Scout followed me in and also crashed for an hour.

“I repeat, DO NOT wake me up!”

At 11:00 am, the weather was pretty good, so we decided to drop by the dry cleaners on the way to the lodge.

Arriving at the Elks, I dropped Mary under the carport entrance to the lodge.  As I exited the car out in the parking lot, a cloud burst lasted two minutes, pelting me with water and a few pieces of hail.

Bob joined us within a few minutes, and we caught up on the latest gossip!

BTW, we took out our things to compare them, and sure enough, Bob’s AAA Membership was 60 years, Bill’s was 55 years, and ours was 52 years.

Smile at us.

When Bill arrived, the conversation got even funnier.

Bill gives us the evil eye.

We enjoyed soup and salads. We asked Bob to take a picture because quite often we “are not there” after we get home and look at the photos we took!

Just us!

We enjoy each other’s company and always find something to giggle about.  I find life’s most beautiful moments aren’t just with her but because of her.

We were here!

On the way home, we stopped by Macy’s as Mary wanted to look for a Mother of The Bride dress for our Ireland trip.   We also found a gift for our Great Grand Nephew.  Sadly, we discovered that the enormous Barnes and Noble store was closed and out of business.

What We Found Out A book-signing event at a Barnes & Noble in Orange was cut short on Saturday, April 29, after a fire broke out inside the business, leading to the store’s closure for the foreseeable future.

Author and photographer Maggie St. Thomas was performing a reading of her new book, “Still Life: The Photographs of Maggie St. Thomas,” to a crowd inside the bookstore on the 700 block of South Main Street when the fire broke out sometime around 5 pm, according to Orange Deputy Fire Marshal Robert Prendergast.  Customers and staff were evacuated from the store, and no injuries were reported.

The fire quickly grew to a second alarm, with about 45 personnel from Orange County Fire Authority, Anaheim Fire & Rescue, and Orange Police called in to assist with the fire.

The blaze was contained around 9 pm, Prendergast said.

The cause of the fire and an estimate of the damage were under investigation on Sunday.

The bookseller announced on Instagram that the Barnes & Noble store was closed on Sunday and would remain so until further notice.

After visiting the shopping center, we stopped at Michaels to look for goodies for our upcoming trip!  Mary thought having an Embroidery Kit might be fun on our two-week cruise through the Panama Canal, but they had nothing!

A quick stop at Michaels

I went online and got two kits to see if that would suffice.  We will find out shortly.

When we got home, we visited Jeff, our neighbor.  We had a glass of wine, and we brought him cheesecake and a berry cobbler from the Elks Lodge lunch today.  We chatted for an hour and then came home.

We hit the sack around 10:30 pm.  Mary tried to watch a movie but fell asleep at 9:00 pm.  Scout was found in the family room chowing down on his dry food, so we must go outside within an hour.  So, I stayed up and worked on the website until I heard him asking to go outside.

You know you’re in love when you can’t fall asleep because reality is finally better than your dreams.

“Daddy, I gots to go!”

When I returned to bed, Mary was sawing logs, so I removed her glasses, got her a bottle of water, and headed under the covers.  Scout was happy, so everyone was happy.

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Rainy Tuesday; Office Time!

We are listening to the rainfall!

We worked from 6:00 am until almost noon in the office going through paperwork.  We believe that paperwork multiplies overnight, so you will always have a four-inch stack to go through!  We are now 95% complete with the future travel arrangements, including renting a car in Ireland.

Sometimes, we feel a bit old after fighting with the paperwork and the computer.

Mary worked on the trip, and I worked on “cleaning up” the Road Trip Webpages, which show the many trips we had to Saratoga and back over the years.  We started in 1988, but the first web entry was in 2007, when digital cameras were readily available.  Cleanup means updating the HTML/Javascript/PHP code to the latest.

Mary fixed a nice lunch before we rode to her doctor’s office in Newport.  Mary went inside, and I stayed in the parking lot and diddled with the Silver Fox’s electronics system settings, getting ready for our trip to Saratoga.

We returned home about 4:00 pm and prepared to go to the Elks Lodge for a formal meeting.  We had dinner with Capps and Zaitz before the meeting got underway.

This evening was an election, and we went to support our guy!

We sing GOD BLESS AMERICA at the close of the meeting; we love the Elks.

We went to VFR home after the meeting.  We left Sir Scout inside, and he was sound asleep.  He and I went into the backyard and prepared for a long sleep!

The entire front yard is bright green now!

It’s been a long day!  We crashed at 10:30 pm.

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Four Years Ago Today

Four years ago, on this day, we lost Sue.

I was immediately surrounded with love from our family and friends.  Irene, Vicky & Del, Robin, Colleen, Joe, and many others were there to support me in these trying times.  Life must go on!

For some reason, destiny brought me to get together with Dr. Mary six months later.  She had been a family friend for two decades.  We needed each other, and I thank God daily for giving me such a wonderful woman to share the rest of my life with!

We are one!

At 8:15 am, Mary and her chauffeur got into the Silver Fox and headed to the gym (BTW, her chauffeur is an extremely handsome man with a marvelous personality and looks great in a thong!).

One more week, and I can join her at the gym again.  I drove carefully through the neighborhood to not awaken the Monster Of Orange (MOO) we saw last night on our walk!  Click to see the MOO!

The MOO is up close!

Just before we departed, Mary reminded me that I had forgotten to make coffee, oops!  So, to make up for it, I stopped at Dunkin’ Donuts and picked up a latte at 140 for the two of us.  I was forgiven.

We worked in the office the rest of the day, making arrangements for our travels this summer.  We called airlines, car rental agencies, and friends we plan to visit in Europe.

At 11:00 am, our Farmer’s Insurance man came by to look at the rain damage.  We got good news; he said he would NOT replace the roof but have the solar system removed, reinstalled/inspected with an updated set of solar panels.  Our insurance covered the cost of the roof protection, all of the drywall repairs, and some funds to fix some wind damage we had not seen earlier!

Rain was threatening, but no significant rain occurred.  At 5:30 pm, we visited our neighbor, Jeff, and brought him half a cherry pie.  We enjoyed chatting with him while sipping a glass of wine.

We installed an outdoor lighting system to showcase the holidays.  While we walked back home, I pulled out the iPhone and changed the system’s color to emerald green!  We have our St. Patrick’s Day flag ready to fly tomorrow.

We crashed about 9:30 pm and turned on the whole house fan to get the house to sleeping temperature.  Scout and I went outside so he could patrol the yard, checking everything out before retiring.

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Sunday Has Arrived But The Rain Has Not!

We followed the recommendation and spent the day relaxing.  We watched TV while having a small breakfast.  We were expecting Robin to come over with her famous French Onion Soup.  Along with the soup, we wanted to have Mary’s World Famous Turkey Sandwich, which required us to make a quick trip to Ralph’s Market.  I picked up the turkey and white bread because Robin couldn’t have bread with any seeds due to her tooth condition.

Robin came over at 1:00 pm, and we chatted for an hour while preparing lunch.

The doorbell rang, and it was our eccentric neighbor, Mad Max, who dropped by to chat.  After two hours of conversation, he left at 5:20 pm.

After a few minutes, we started our around-the-block path, which is about 3/4 of a mile.  The path includes several hills, making it a challenging walk with several hills, making it a challenging walk.

The sun had set, and it was scary out as we heard strange noises.

We almost turned back because of the fierce, growling noises coming from down the street.  Perhaps a lion or hippopotamess got loose from the local zoo.

And then it appeared!  We were terrified, but we gathered our wits and remembered what we were supposed to do.  We stopped in our tracks, elevated ourselves to the highest possible position, and looked down as if we were submitting to this ferocious creature!

It escaped early from its Easter holding cell!

Our good fortune prevailed, and the beast hippity-hopped into the bushes without attacking us and ripping us to shreds!

Mary captured me right after my body stopped shaking like a leaf from that beast!

Maybe the beast did not like yellow?

We continued our walk and arrived home safely at 5:45 pm.  We locked all the doors and brought Scout inside just in case the beast came by our home.

We attempted to call John and Sarah as today was their 7th anniversary, but they were out celebrating our in bed; they are early risers.  It is hard to believe my grandson has been going with this lady for 16 years and married seven!  She is a load of fun!

We watched two movies, one of which I missed as I was on the computer for a while.    We crashed at 10:00 pm.

Yes indeed!

Before going to bed, I was remembering this evening four years ago when the family gathered at Los Alamitos Hospital, where Sue was in the IC unit.

Son Joe, grandson Connor, daughter Michele, daughter Robin, me, son Mitch, grandson Zack.  Several others had been with us, including Irene and the Kuhns.

We didn’t realize that the last time they saw her was the final time, as she passed away at seven in the morning the next day.  Every year, the pain of her loss becomes a little easier to bear, and it’s comforting to know that she is no longer in constant pain.

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The End Of An Era

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Rain Rain Go Away, It Did!

Today was a zip!  We planned to stay inside and listen to the rain but the weather guesser-missed again!  It was drier than an old maid’s nipple, and it got to 72 degrees with the sun!

We had a little breakfast and then walked around the block.  One of our neighbors also likes to decorate for the seasons, so we were treated to ducks and bunnies.

Easter is right around the corner!

His front yard is one of those “desert” themes, so his decor is easily changed with the holidays.


We slightly adjusted the route to get closer to one mile, and with an additional adjustment, we can get right on one mile.

We walked a mile today!

Mary whipped by a delightful dinner.  She makes every meal not only great to eat but downright beautiful!

Brunch from the garden!

Returning home, we finished Royal Pains and hit the sack around midnight.

Yes indeed!

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Our Son Joe To The Rescue!

We worked around the house most of the day.  I cleaned the garage while Mary went to the gym, and it now looks pretty good!

Mary was shocked when she saw everything cleaned up and much more room to get in and out of the car!  I even fixed the overhead LED lights to go on.  All the battery chargers are plugged in and ready to go!

OMG, there was a workbench under all that stuff!

Scout helped!  Yeah!  He lounged around all day, looking up as we passed,d by, begging for treats!

In my next life, I am going to be a dog!

Joe, our son, came over around 1:3 pm and put a tarp over the top of the solar panels where we had the leaks last week.   I do not plan to repair or replace the roof until we are home between our planned travels, plus I need to decide on the solar panels!

Joe is amazing.  He helps everyone and is very knowledgeable about repairs.  He reminds me of when I was 40; now approaching 80, I do not dare go onto the roof.  I am very proud of this young man and his entire family.

Joe to the rescue!

After he departed, I just sat there and thought about everything we had done together over the years.

We went to what we thought would be a 1950s band at the Elks.  We had dinner, but SOON after that, we departed.  The music was horrible, between 90 and 100 db, enough to damage one ear!  I felt bad.  Vicky and Jim departed with us, and Iris and Will were going to leave after Iris finished her baked potato.   I plan to complain and perhaps go to the health board to get their noise level input.

We left!

We came home, watched our series, held hands, and drank hot tea.  I prefer evenings at home with Mary anyway!

Time to dream!

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Time To Visit The Elks

We went to Girls Night Out at noon at the Elks and had a delightful lunch! When we got home, we again did a walk around the block as part of staying healthy. Mr. Bug always welcomes us.

Mr. Bug lives in our neighbor’s front yard and visits with people who walk in the neighborhood.

We have three basic paths: two are a mile, and this one is our shortie we use when we are in a hurry, or one of our old age conditions begin to act out.

This is our short path!

Back to the Elks at 6:00 pm for a prime rib dinner with Vicky and Jim.  Jim was scheduled to do some karaoke this evening and he did it well!

We got a standing ovation for his efforts, and he was invited back any time he wanted!!  Jim sang in the church choir for years and had a fantastic voice!

Sing that song, Jim!

His audience went wild!

He has a lot of fans!

Jim has his own personal groupie!


We had a great time all evening and thought the performances were fantastic!

Just us!

We stayed later than we anticipated because this singing was excellent.  When we finally got home, we crashed.  It was a good evening.

We are ready for bed!


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Happy Ballentimes Day!

Valentine’s Day has arrived, and we are ready to celebrate.  First, Mary headed for the gym while I stayed home and cleaned the house to prepare for the house cleaners to arrive.

When I picked Mary up from the gym, we went to the dry cleaners as we had a stack of goodies there needing to be picked up.  On our way back, we decided to go to the Original Pancake House and shared a veggie omelet.  That sucker has 1440 calories hence the reason we shared.

They had brand-new coffee cups, which we enjoyed.

These cups were not cheapies; the pictures and words were raised in ceramic material.

Since she just departed from the gym, I was NOT allowed any pictures until she wrapped up her hair; she always looks fantastic!

“You can take a picture now!”

We did not realize the cups were in different colors.  Now, we will have to look around and catalog the colors.

These cups are indeed a work of art.

Returning home, we finished off getting ready for the cleaning staff.  When they arrived, we went across the street to Jeff’s and visited him for a while.  We knew they were done with our place as Domi came to the door; she does Jeff’s house also!

We watched TV in the afternoon and then prepared for Valentine’s Day evening festivities.

We went to Renata’s at the Orange Circle.  They were busy this evening, but the owner knew we were coming and saved us the best seat in the house, which was inside and adjacent to the plate glass window,

We were ready to dine!

Two college kids were at the table next to us, so we started conversing.  They got a free dinner as Bob and I paid for their meal!

Bob and I worked on our secret plan.  Thursday, Jim is going to sing at the Elks karaoke activity, and when he gets up to sing, Bob and I are going to stand behind him and be his “backup singers,” complete with hand and foot motions (NO singing for us as they would empty the lodge).

Bob is an incredible choreographer.

We thought about having roses in our mouths, but Valentine’s Day will be over.  The song Jim is going to sing is “Feeling Happy” by the Turtles.

Bob looks pretty good with the rose!

We headed home around 9:00 pm, and traffic was busy; everyone was coming home from dinner somewhere.

Chapman was busy.

We stopped at Aces and had a glass of wine before going home.  We met up with Kyle, who sings Sinatra.  He did a pretty good one!

We got home around 10:00 pm and crashed.  Mary was worried she didn’t get a Valentine’s Day present; I surprised her!

Next year, I will get something different!

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Tomorrow Is The Big Day!!

How very sad!

7:00 am came early this morning, and then we realized Mary had a dentist appointment in Huntington Beach at 8:30 am.  She had to hurry because we remembered the dentist’s front door sign: NO JAMMIES ALLOWED!

At 8:00 am, we were on the road, speeding through the back streets to avoid the traffic, trying to get on the freeway.  We were wearing our racing togs, and the scarves around our necks were waving out the window as we broke the sound barrier and a myriad of traffic laws.

Careening into the dentist’s parking lot with thirty seconds to spare, we hit the brakes, lowered the flaps, set the landing gear, threw out the anchor, and slid into a parking place right by the entrance.

Like Superwoman changing into her suit in the telephone booth, Mary sprung into action.  She threw off the racing togs, released her five-point seatbelts, and put on her professional go-to-the-doctor outfit.  We made it with ten seconds to spare; being a doctor, Mary hates to be late!

There might be some truth to that!

Her procedure took less than fifteen minutes!  We returned home, had a small breakfast, and returned to the road at 12:30 pm for a 1:00 pm audiologist’s appointment to see if our hearing had changed.  It seems going to doctors is a large part of our social life.

Upon seeing the office decor, I was totally tempted to place one of my earplugs into the sculpture (I carry earplugs because of the loud music at some of our events).  It was either that or tie a string around the finger as a reminder.

Interesting decorations in the audiologists office.

The office decorations were attractive.

Our results were good, except the term  “Dear, would you …..” is challenging to hear.  Our doctor gave us the test, tuned our hearing aids, downloaded the newest firmware, and matched the aids to our individual hearing curves.

We now have no excuse for hearing each other.

My hearing was about like last year.

It was 1:45 pm, and we were two miles from the American Legion, so it was time for lunch.  We enjoyed a glass of wine with a delicious turkey sandwich and French fries.  Their turkey sandwiches are relatively large, so we shared.  They brought out the sandwich and it seemed a little large plus we wanted it cut in half so we could share it.

It was definitely fresh!

The second time was a hit, and they served the sandwich on two plates with too many fries on each plate.  To avoid an international incident, we ate the French fries anyway!

Sharing a turkey sandwich was perfect.

We tried to resist the French fries, but they were the first to go.

How can something so beautiful be so bad for you?  It is not fair!

The Legion had a lot of people when we visited, which was unexpected since we usually come on Mondays and it is not busy.

As it turned out, Tuesdays are “Jam Session & Taco Tuesday” days, and band members play on the patio in the afternoon.  Today, we saw eight guys playing classic rock and roll music from the 1950s and 1960s.  The music was very danceable!

The bar was pretty busy.

With a little AI, I removed the background, and here we are.  It is always amazing how Mary has fallen in love with an old bald-headed wrinkle sponge?

Go away, background.

With another push of the button, we have a Valentine’s Day present background.

Tomorrow is the day!

It was supposed to be a romantic lunch, but the arrows kept bouncing off.  Perhaps I should try Botox?

The music was a little loud, so being inside was a good choice.  It was toe-tapping music, and we would have danced, but we needed to return to the 55 Freeway before it got too clobbered with northbound afternoon traffic.

There is terrific music outside, with two Rock n’ Roll Hall Of Fame members present.

We got home around 4:00 pm and watched more of Royal Pains until it was our time to walk.  We will walk twice a day for about a mile to help us reach our goal of losing some weight.  At 7:00 pm we set out with our bright jackets and a flashlight.  Normally Scout would join us but he is smarted than us, he is in bed sound asleep!

This street is Cannon, and it is uphill.  If we make it to the top, we are good to go!

On our evening walk.

We made it even though it was cold.  The snow had just melted.   We wear reflective jackets; Mary is in pink, and I wear yellow!

Our short path is 0.8 miles around the school, but we can easily change routes, adding another 0.3 miles when it is a tad warmer.

Walking is a great exercise and is on addition to the 30 minutes on the treadmill at the gym.

Returning home, we looked for Scout; the little bugger went to bed.  We watched more of Royal Pains and hit the sack around 10:30 pm.  Scout had to be woken up so he could do his business, or otherwise, we would get pawed something during the night.

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