Father’s Day; 2021!

“A father is a man who expects his son to be as good a man as he meant to be.”

I was up early and headed to Casa Valencia to make sure the drip system was working

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Work, Work and Celebrate!

 If attacked by a mob of clowns, go for the juggler.

We decided to conquer and divide this morning, so Mary stayed at her house and worked in the exercise room and on the bookshelves well; I went over to Cassa Valencia and worked in the garage and our office.

We had reservations at the Old Spaghetti Factory restaurant in Fullerton to celebrate grandson Nick’s two  AA degrees from college he achieve this last week.  So at 11 AM, we both stopped and got ready to go.

Nick did not have a formal graduation, so I told him, “A graduation ceremony is an event where the commencement speaker tells thousands of students dressed in identical caps and gowns that ‘individuality is the key to success.”

I also told him of my experience graduating from USC in the heat of the June sun.  Nick, I said, “Graduation speeches were invented largely in the belief that college students should never be released into the world until they have been properly sedated.”

We got to the Old Spaghetti Factory a little early, so we went into the bar and ordered up an adult beverage which we sipped while enjoying talking to each other.

We enjoyed a “no work” time out, just sitting back and talking.

I did ask Mary, “What did E.T.’s mother say to him when he got home? “Where on Earth have you been?!”  Amazingly, I only got to boos and a small hiss!  I must be getting better.

We had a glass of wine; after all, it is “after noon”

Right on cue, the rest of the gang showed up. It was nice to see Bob’s mother, Pat,  and Nick’s friend, Kai. We are proud of Nick for doing this while holding two jobs and becoming an adult simultaneously.

The man of the hour; he begins his trek through life armed with knowledge!

We had a great lunch and we all talked for an hour and a half, it’s lovely to have family surrounding you. When we went outside at the end of the meal we took some pictures which we will keep for a long time.

The Duda’s; a happy family!

We are fortunate to have the Duda’s in our lives, very special people!

Bob finally controlled himself but it took a while!

Having mary fit into the family is a wonderful thing. She enjoys all the interactions and had figured most of them out.

Good looking group!

Well everyone was figuring out what next picture to take next, I snapped one of Mary doing a “Robin pose”.

Robin has taught us well!

Your lunch was over, it was back to work.  While we were supposed to go dancing tonight, my head called was not doing very well so I called Bob and Donna and canceled out. Well we had planned to go back to work, I laid down on the couch at Mary’s and fell sound asleep. We watched a movie until about 9 o’clock at which time I crashed; I got to get rid of this cold driving me buggy (which I should mention is a short distance).

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Friday Was Amazing; I Have A Shop; Thanks To Joe!

What do you call a deaf gynecologist? A lip reader.

It’s Friday and a day of work for Mary!  ME, I am retired, so I do not work, NOT!   I got to the new house, Casa Valencia, early to get the trash out on the street.  The new driplines are working, but I another hundred feet to install before I am done.  Scout, The Wonder Dog, was with me because his task is to scare away the elephants, a job he is well equipped to handle.

At 9:00 AM, the Silver Fox and I headed out to do errands, with the first being a stop at the post office to mail a package.  Then, we went to the glass store where I needed more glass for a China cabinet; yes, ladies and gentlemen, your adorable author missed both measurements by 1/4″.

So, on the way home, I decided to stop at Del Taco and get a snack to hold me over.  As soon as the order was done, I attacked the bag with such ferocity the neighboring cars thought I was fighting off a herd of wildebeests.  Pieces of taco shells and shredded cheese were flying all around as I tackled that delightful meal.  Thank goodness, no one called the cops.

Then, the phone rang, mid-bite, I may add.  Recognizing the ring, I answered it, and it was, as expected, my son Joe.  “Hey, Dad, where are you right now” spoke the voice on the phone.  I replied, “Holding my own against a gigantic taco!”.  Well, I found out that Joe was at our house with tools and materials in hand; I did not know it was “Shop Day.”

I bit the last bite of the taco leaving only the bones to be evidence of the magnificent battle I put up.  The Silver Fox and I set the navigation for home, and we were there in less than ten minutes.

Joe explained his plan, “Dad, you put the cabinet together, and I will attach the tabletop to the workbench!”  That sounded fair to me until I opened the first cabinet box, and it came with 4,567 parts, most of which these old eyes could not see.  Hey, why not give it the old college try!

Carefully I read the instructions to myself, “Put part 75 into the do-hickey adjacent to part 87 and then attach the two pieces with bubblegum”.  Bubblegum, that was not in the tiny parts package, or was it?  Yes, I tossed to the bubblegum thinking it was styrofoam.  On my hands and knees looking for a small piece of gum ON MY NEW FLOOR!

It starts!

Meanwhile, on the western end of the garage, Joe has attached the tabletop in a most delightful way! No screaming and yelling, no throwing of parts or tools, the mild-mannered day laborer just filled his intuition, and it was taking shape.

The counter is coming along well.

Not to be outdone by a fifty-year-old, I lifted my work of art and proceeded to go into the door-hanging phase of the assembly.  I swear, when I was growing up, the screws were NEVER this small.  I needed tweezers to find the little devils, and then they acted like Mexican jumping beans.  I pick it up; it drops. I pick it up; it drops. I pick it up; it drops.

Under my breath, I remembered every cuss work I had ever used, some of which I, to this day, have no idea what they mean; I just knew they were naughty.  Joe would look over to see how dad was doing, and I smiled and hummed a tune from my childhood, and before you say it, they had music when I was a child.

Almost done, needs doors.

And here he is, my own little day laborer.  A handsome specimen, I might add, taking his good looks, wonderful warm personality, and technical talent from the old man.

The day laborers at Home Depot are NOT what they used to be!

I repeated the very labor-intensive process of assembling the cabinets not twice but four times! Joe attached them to the wall with a 30″ bolt.  The cabinets will never fall off, and the bolts that extend through the wall into the front patio can always be used as an expression of modern art!

The last cabinet goes up!

Many laughs and giggles later, I have a shop that I am proud of.  We have a few things to add, but I have a shop!  YEAH!  I think Joe was more excited about the shop than me!  I am so proud to be his pappy.

Lookin’ good! Jose did a good job! He gets an extra burrito this evening,

Mary called about 3:30 PM as she had seen her last patient, and she asked, “What’s for dinner?”  I told her on days she works; I will cook and meet her at the door with a martini and wear, well, let us say appropriate attire.

Joe stayed until Mary got home as Joe likes her and wanted to visit for a few minutes and tell tall-tales about me and the construction job we did.  No, I did not ask Joe for a left-handed screwdriver.

So to make sure Mary was upset about dinner, I had started a pot of boiling water for hr favorite, artichokes.  We had a boggle of wine and two artichokes on the back patio, watching the birds fly backward to see where they have been.  We continued working until the sun started to set and then made the arduous trek up the hill to Mary’s house.

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Even During A Move, Life Must Go On!

A friend didn’t pay his bill after someone removed the ghosts from his house and ended up being repossessed.

Mary stayed home this morning, and I went to Casa Valencia; we had bills to pay.  Funny how people still want their money even though we are very, very busy! After the bill-paying session, I checked the new drip irrigation system, and all was OK. I will finish it off this weekend when I get the 1/2″ while hose which I ordered from Oregon.

Then I proceeded to get the plastic storage boxes away from the office and into the garage, carefully placing labels on them; we will need room starting next week!

I ran by and got Mary at 11:00 Am, and we headed for the Santa Ana Elks for “Girls Night Out.”  We missed Mike Andersen, but we had a full crew with Capps, Carlson, Gielow, and Ash joining Bob Z, Mary, and me.

Mary Capps joined us today!

After lunch, we returned to Casa Valencia, where Mary opened and organized the last of the packing boxes.  The only boxes remaining are the books and my photo albums, which I intend to cull down to just a few.  It’s funny to see those old pictures now as they are fuzzy and were taken 30 years ago before I acquired some knowledge on how to take pictures.

We declared victory about 6:00 PM and returned to Mary’s place.  On the way out through the garage, I noticed that my Craftsmen storage cabinets had arrived, so Joe and I will hanging them this weekend.

I somehow have picked up a “summer cold” because I was sniffling and had a sore throat.  We ate a little something and tried to watch a movie, but at 7:00 PM I was done for and went upstairs and crashed.

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I just found out that I’m colorblind. The diagnosis came completely out of the purple.

Dr. Annie and I had a date at 8:30 AM sharp, so I was on my way to Fountain Valley by 7:30 AM.  Mary stayed behind to get things ready for the interior decorator.  Two hours in the chair was a pain in the butt, really!

A bad case of UGLY!!

My appointment was done by 10:30 AM, and I headed home via CVS.  We decided it was time to go to Rockwell’s for lunch as the decorator was due at Casa Valencia at 1:00 PM.

Rockwells was not overly busy, so we were in and out in 45 minutes!

We worked at the new house, Casa Valencia, all day as the new week begins the move of Mary into the humble abode.  Things are looking pretty good. We spent two solid hours with the decorator, and she gave us ideas and will be procuring the window treatments for the back/side of the house!

We got our first housewarming gift from Hannah and Lisa! Specialized coolies, and they were wonderful!

The bestest tookies ever! Thank you, Lisa and Hannah!!!

We continued working until almost sunset and then headed to Mary’s to soak in the swim Spa.  I did ask Mary, “Why did the cookie go to the doctor? He was feeling crummy.”

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Tuesday; A Day Of Rest; NOT!

You have two parts of the brain, “left” and “right.” On the left side, there’s nothing right, and on the right side, there’s nothing left.

What a day!  We started early with Mary’s ZOOM meeting went until 8:30 AM.  I headed for casa Valencia to verify that the drip system was working.  There was much to do around the house, so I worked until 8:43 Am and then headed “up the hill” to Mary’s place to get a pail of water.  We decided it was errand day, so we were off:

  1. CVS Pharmacy in Los Alamitos – I needed a couple of prescriptions and got others transferred to Orange. I bought a really expensive laxative from the pharmacy. It gave me a good run for my money.
  2. Bed Bath & Beyond in Los Alamitos – We needed some additional china cup covers and some under-the-counter storage items which the Orange store did not have in stock.
  3. The Dry Cleaner in Los Alamitos – Pick up the last of my clothes, and it seemed off as I have been going there for thirty-five years.
  4. Staples in Los Alamitos – I needed several storage containers, and amazingly they were in stock.
  5. Fly-By the Los Alamitos House – No special reason, we were just in the hood.  The doors were open, and people were working.  Vicky believes they are going to add a second story to the place. We shall see!
  6. Imperial Jewelers in Los Alamitos – I needed to pick up a ring that was being resized.
  7. Old Ranch Country Club – TIme for lunch as we moved quickly through the city doing our errands, and we were hungry. Besides, I have a minimum to spend.

  8. The Bone Doctor – I wanted him to look at my thumb, which was broken years back, and it is giving me fits; it is probably arthritis.
  9. The Home Store in Los Alamitos – We looked for a decorative hand-towel rack for the “powder room”; we found want we wanted.
  10. Chico’s in Los Alamitos – Mary wanted to do a quick look at their stock, and she found a summer dress and bought it.  I told Mary. “A study of economics usually reveals that the best time to buy anything is last year.”
  11. Patty’s Place in Seal Beach – We had dinner with Vicky and Robin.  We had a great time visiting.

Having a ball!

After dinner, we headed home.  It was a day full of stop and goes, but we didn’t have to “work”  We crashed within minutes of arriving at Mary’s place.

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Today Was A Work Day!

I used to be a mime…. but now I can talk about it…

Mary was off to work, and I was off to Casa Valencia.  At 9:00 AM, I stopped and ran by the post office to get important mail into the system.  I stopped at Home Depot, and then I dropped by Subway and got a veggie sandwich for brunch.

It was an embarrassing day for me.  I worked two hours trying to put up a toilet paper dispenser in the bathroom, and I could not make it work.  Totally and absolutely frustrated, I went to the year and put in a drip irrigation system for Mary plants.

That turned out to be a bad idea as the temperature was in the 90’s.  I worked for a couple of hours after a quick trip to Home Depot for some fittings.  By 5:00 PM, the system was in, and 50% of the plants were not on a timer!

The forecast was wrong. I was perspiring in the next hour and totally made a black shirt sopping wet!

I called Joe mid-afternoon to talk and tell him about the Delta toilet paper dispenser and my add day fight with it.  He and the boys came over.  He looked at what I had done and said, “Dad, the brackets are on backward!”  It hit me; of course, they are on backward; I am such a doofus.

The boys swam in the pool, and we ordered pizza.  Good thing as Mary didn’t get home until almost 5:45 PM, and she had a horrible day with some moronic patients.  She never mentions medical conditions, HIPA, you know!  But their attitudes are amazing.  One guy didn’t buy the medication she prescribed because it was expensive; the alternative is to go blind; DUH!

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Sunday At Casa Valencia Was Another Work Day!

I asked Mary if she ever fantasizes about me, she said yes – about me taking out the trash, mowing the lawn, and doing the dishes.

Yup! That about sizes it up!

We were up bright and early; I even had to wake up the roosters!  Today we put the finishing touches on the small stuff like toilet paper holders, towel racks, hanger-hooks on the back of doors, and some pictures where we know what we want.

We worked hard and it was so nice that Joe brought over the tabletop for the workbench yesterday.  I had room to work!

We called Zack as he was planning to come over.  Well, he (Lilly) had two softball games so we would see him later on.  About noon, he called and said the second game was canceled so they are on their way. Yeah!  We said to be prepared to swim, the pool is warm!  I love the large door into the backyard!

View to the pool from the front door!

To the water, they went, like a herd of ducks.  Miss Mary and Lilly are best pals because Mary found a “swimsuit” for Lilly and by tieing some carefully selected knots in it, the suit fit!

Mary, Becca, Lilly, and Remy in the pool (while the guys’ work)

Zack and I put together the TV’s so we now have Spectrum, along with Firestick and Apple TV in the TV room plus we have Firestick and Spectrum On-Line n the bedroom.  We have three TVs to go but that can be at a later date.

The Linds!

After their departure, we worked for another two hours and at 3:00 PM we declared victory and went to Mary’s to clean up and get ready for dancing this evening.  We went to Rockwell’s for dinner and I enjoyed the blackened salmon while Mary did a protein salad with prime rib.

We danced from 7:00 PM until a little after 9:00 PM and had a blast although we missed Bob and Donna who were also out working helping their kids move.

We got home and dropped like flies.

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One Busy Saturday!!!

I’m skeptical of anyone who tells me they do yoga every day. That’s a bit of a stretch.

We worked like dogs this morning, getting up at 6:30 AM and heading to Casa Valencia.  Then I remembered something about being first. The early bird might get the worm, but the second mouse gets the cheese.

We want to start moving Mary in a week, so we have to be done.  I told Mary, “Worrying works! More than 90 percent of the things I worry about never happen.”

Frank came over the 11:00 AM and put up my new drapes into the TV Room and Formal Dining Room.  They fit perfectly from the old place into the new place!

We walked the back yard as Mary likes to talk to the veggies, so they know to produce. So I joined her and had a pleasant conversation with baby squash and some string beans! The plants are doing fine.

She knows each plant by its first name!

As we walked near the pool equipment, I remembered to check the temperature, and it was 94 degrees in the pool! So, we better call Joe and Amy so they can enjoy an afternoon in the pool.

The day begins at Casa Valencia!

The house is rather large at 3,700 square feet, so we hired an assistant who wanders around the house cleaning the floors. It used to have a tail, but the tail got caught on a table leg and came off.

Roaming around the house!

Joe, Amy, and the three kids (Charlier, Alex, and Apollo) were the first to come over.  Poor old Scout was too pooped to pop afterward.  Apollo and Scout ran around like crazy people.

Scout has a friend!

The boys headed for the pool, and so did Apollo.  He jumped in with the boys several times! It was funny to watch Scout say, “WHAT are you doing?”

Grandsons and grand dog enjoy the pool.

Scout gave Apollo a little push and splat; there he went again.  Too funny!

Hey, the water is 94 degrees!

The boys just came back from playing two baseball games, and they were hungry, so Joe stopped and got some takeout food. We, well actually Mary, had made chili, cornbread and baked a pie to share; too bad, more for me!

Son Joe and Amy visit.

Robin and Traci joined the fun, and Robin brought a wonderful snack plate, and of course, Mary rooted through everything to get to the strawberries.

Check out that strawberry!

Robin’s sister enjoyed all the visiting, and it was the second time they met Joe and Amy; the first was at the 4th of July celebration two years ago at Old Ranch.

Robin and Traci visit!

After everyone left, we decided to sit in the oversized hot tub.  The pool was 94 degrees,  the moon was out, and it was dark.  We saved wear and tear on our bathing attire, needless to say!

The day ends!

After an hour in hot water with a bottle of wine, we decided to stay the night at Casa Valencia this evening.  Good choice; we crashed hard. So tomorrow, we put the finishing touches on my move, and we begin with Dr. Mary!

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Friday Was another Busy Day!

Tonight’s forecast, 99% chance of wine.

We were up early as Mary has to work today, and I have an all-day to-do list at Casa Valencia! Scout and I arrived at Casa Valencia at 8:03 AM and checked the sprinkler system; it worked, everything was watered.  Now I have to adjust the times as the drip lines in the gardens need to be thirty minutes instead of ten, a job for Saturday morning.

Yes, I have a to-do list!

I worked in the garage getting ready for phase two of the move, Mary coming down the hill!  My shop is coming along just fine, and Joe is assisting me in setting it up.

In the late morning, I went to the glass store to pick up my order, and I found out the glass was cut to the exact size I specified, but I mismeasured by a 1/4 inch, so I hope they can shorten the glass; we will see tomorrow!  I thought to myself, “Will glass coffins be a success?”  I am not sure, and it remains to be seen.

A stop at Del Taco was needed to keep the old body moving all afternoon!  I downed them while I was driving for fear of getting home and Scout wanting my lunch! I thought about calling Mary and asking her, ” A taco’s favorite musical genre?”  I decided not to after I remembered the punch line, “Wrap music, of course!”

Me with my Taco face on!

When I donate the china cabinet, we will have room for two cars in the garage with room to spare; I will be pleased! Also, the car cover for the Honda Odyssey arrived, and I plan to put it on the vehicle this weekend.

The garage shop is now looking like I can begin to work.  I bought four CRAFTSMAN Garage Storage 28-Inch Wide Wall Cabinets, which will house many of the tools I use often based upon Joe’s recommendation.

My most used Makita tools and their batteries will now be readily available! Four of these will go across the back of the workbench!

Mary called about 4:00 PM and said she was coming home, so I jumped in the shower and got ready to go to the SA Elks for the prime-rib night!

It was a successful day; I was tired but happy!

We got to the Elks at 6:30 PM after visiting Scout and sharing our day over a tiny glass of wine!

Craig & Bob

Mary and I let our collective hair down and killed off a bottle of wine while dining on prime rib and salmon!

Just us! Carrying on as usual! Mary was tired as she worked all day today!

The girls were jabbering away when I captured the shot.  Vicky, Marianne, and Sandy!

No getting a word in edgewise with this group!

Mary and I are delighted just listening to all the stories being told

Just us!

The lodge was full this evening, and the main area where dancing is done was also nearly full; great food.

Craig, Bob, Donna Iris, and Wil… Stories are told and retold!

We have not seen Brenda and Sam for almost a year except for the Celebration Of Life for Del; good to see them out and about!

Brenda and Sam.

At the far end of the table was Robin (Bob is playing a gig in northern California). We missed sitting with Robin, but it was good that she connected with Sam and Brenda, plus Irene and Vicky!

Robin (my daughter) with Irene and Vicky!

We departed about 8:00 PM as we were both pooped, and this weekend we are going to try to get the house ready for Mary’s big move, yeah!

There is a lot of wisdom in that statement!

We went to Casa Valencia to pick up Scout, who was busy shooing elephants out of the backyard. Then, the three of us came home and crashed!!

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