Monday, March 31, 2014

Frustration--I Need to Vent

Riverton, Utah High 48 Low 36

Saturday morning we found a quilters estate sale. The only thing wrong, was that we could only find one piece of fabric that Cindy liked. There were lot of sewing machine needles, and we bought 30 of them for 20 cents apiece, which I didn't think was too bad.

In the afternoon, we had a family party, and had a lot of Cindy's family over, including her mother. There was lots of noise and confusion with all the kids. But everyone seemed to have a good time and no one left hungry.

Now for my aggravation. We belong to Camperworld, and use them as our home RV Resort to belong to Coast to Coast. Early in 2012 they offered us an opportunity to pay a flat fee, and not have to pay dues of any sort again. I had already had dues paid until 2017, and even though it was a lot of money, it sounded like a good thing to pay the extra so we would never have any campground fees again with our membership.

Now comes the problem. Last week we got a notice of special assessment, asking everyone to pay $880. The timing couldn't be worse, right at income tax time, and what happened to our contract to never have to pay dues again? They started out saying pay the $880.00, or agree to pay $500.00 now and $500.00 every year, and sign away the deals we made with the old Board.

The new Board of Director put out notice that there would be an online meeting about the assessment and the reasons for it. He started out telling us that the old board didn't have every ones best interest in mind, when they made the special deals. He claimed they took the money generated and ran, leaving the Resorts 4.5 million in debt, and that was the reason for the assessment.

He said the meeting would last up to two hours, and for everyone to wait their turn to post a question. In his speech he stated that he had talked to a lawyer, and the lawyer was sure that if we all filed a class action lawsuit, we could win, but it would take many years, and the lawyers would not do it on contingency, but would want their money upfront. Ultimately the lawyers would be the only winners.

 From what I could see, some of the questions were good ones, but he didn't really answer them. Some of the people started asking questions faster than he liked, so he kicked the people off. He talked for 30 minutes after saying he would be 10 minutes. Then all at once, he terminated the meeting, and posted that all other meetings were cancelled, and that the Assessment would be $880.00.

What about the contract I and others have? The meeting started out with a max of 100 people with some getting disgusted and others coming on. He didn't seem to like talking to irate people. Did we give them the money because we are good guys and they needed the money? I am probably going to go to the State Consumer Protection Agency and see what they can do about it. The best part is it doesn't cost anything for the State to investigate the problem.

My other concern is what happens to my Coast to Coast membership if for some reason we are left without a home campground? I have used it a lot, and like using it while in Arizona.

I'm through venting, and any advice would be appreciated.

Thanks for visiting.

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Cold Weather and Bead Show

Riverton, Utah High 61 Low 45

Yesterday when we woke up it was a little below freezing. Our thermostat shows 32 degrees, but we had been up for about a half hour before I took the picture. The apricots are in full bloom, and probably got frozen. From the picture I took, you can see the frost on the roof. Cindy say it doesn't matter about the apricots, because we will be gone anyway.

Several times a year there is a gem and bead show at the expo center. We went yesterday, and it seemed a little like the gem and bead show in Quartzsite. There were so many beads and gems it was hard to decide which one you liked best. Some were real stones, and some were imitations. Of coarse the real thing cost a lot more. We bought a few so Cindy could finish out some of the necklaces she has started.

We were about to leave and we ran into one of the vendors that was selling out beads and fittings at close out prices. we bought a lot of fittings  and beads at lower prices than even Quartzsite. He had grab bags of finished necklaces, bracelets, and some beads for $5.00. He also had bags of close out jewelry for $10.00, that he said would have over $120.00 in value. We got one of each, and after we got home, we weren't disappointed.

This necklace was supposed to be real turquoise and sold for about $120.00. We got what looks like the same thing from the close out for $10.00. He told Cindy it was one he got from a close out from QVC, and they sold it for $110.00. I guess she did OK.

There was also a scrapbook expo at the same time and Cindy used to scrapbook, but now the beads and quilting take president.

Last night we went to one of the quilt store's free sew night. It was fun to see all the people we have sewn with before we went to Alaska. The store has a new manager that we had known from another store that went out of business. He then moved to Oregon, and has been there for about 3 years. We liked him when  he was at the other store and he remembered us.

One of the workers at the store and also a quilter.

We have had a busy couple of days, and I will talk about today later.

Thanks for visiting.          

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Cindy's Happy Dance

Riverton, Utah High 50 Low 36 (Where is the 70+ weather?)

Cindy, several years ago bought the Phaff 3-D suite for her embroidery machine. It came with a dongle, which I can only describe as a fancy USB flash drive. They emphasized "do not loose the dongle,as the program will not work without it, and it can't be replaced." The company is afraid you would give the program to someone else. She has had to upgrade several times, at considerable expense. She thought she had taken the dongle with her to Arizona, and toward the middle of January, wasn't able to find it. We had been taking the computers to the library in Yuma to use the internet, and she thought she had the dongle in one of the compartments on her computer bag. She noticed that the zipper was open and thought she had lost the dongle.

She has been fretting about the dongle ever since. We were at one of the quilt stores the other day, and she asked the salesman what could be done about the dongle. He told her that in most cases there was nothing that the company was willing to do because that is how they protect their software.

Yesterday, while moving stuff around on her sewing table, she moved a piece of paper and there was the missing dongle. It seems she had not taken it with us to Arizona after all. You could almost feel the relief. She even did a little happy dance for me.

I spent some time yesterday helping our plumber, Steve, change one of our water heaters. It was only 3 1/2 years old and was supposed to be stainless steel with a lifetime warantee. When we got back from Arizona, Tammy told me there was water in the water heater pan. The water heater had a leak. I had Steve check it, and he said it would have to be replaced.

It was a special one, and had to be brought in from Ogden. I think the manufacturer had a very stupid design, in that there is no way to drain the water heater. Steve put his pump on the outlet and was able to get about half the water out of it. We still struggled to get it out of the pan, and then out of the closet. We then had to take it up the stairs and outside. Neither one of us is young and it was a lot of work for two old men to get the old heater outside, but we finally got it done.

I have been concerned about our taxes this year, because Cindy ended up with 4 different 1099's and W-2's after retiring from the State. I was afraid we were going to be hit with a lot of taxes, but the accountant told me most were just 401 and IRA rollovers. He assured me that we probably weren't going to have to pay any more tax than normal. I hope so. I don't like to pay any more tax than is absolutely necessary. I'm sure everyone else feels the same way, at least I don't know anyone that is happy to pay tax.

Sorry about no pictures today, but thanks for visiting.

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Quilt Store and Cub Scouts

Riverton, Utah High 52 Low 36

Yes, I'm going to talk about the weather. It is a lot cooler today than yesterday. We set a new record in Salt Lake of 75 for the day. Then today it is supposed to rain, with a possibility of snow tomorrow. I'm starting to miss all the warm temperatures we had in Arizona. No, not really starting to miss them, I missed them from the first day I got home.

We did get all our tax stuff ready to take to the accountant, which I will do this evening.

Cindy wanted a Batik for the back for our Alaska quilt, and one of the fabric stores we go to has a thing where the first customer of the day gets 30% off any fabric, and what is left is then the fabric of the day at 30% off. As a bonus they also started a sale of bolt end fabric. They were supposed to be 3 yards or less and you had to take the entire remaining amount on the bolt. There were lots of Batiks, and all kinds of fabric. Of coarse we had to be first, and got there a half hour before they opened. They already had the sale fabric out, and we asked them that since we were first, would we get the choice of the fabric of the day. They said sure, and since the sale fabric was already out, why don't we look at it until the store opens?

They had lots of nice quilts on display.

We did just that and picked out a lot of Batiks and were going to wait until the store opened, but the sales people told us we might as well pick out which ever fabric we wanted for the fabric of the day, while she measured the sales items. Really nice people to deal with. We found the Batik we wanted for the back, and got all the sale fabric and had it paid for by the normal opening time. We got 30% off on everything, and saved a little over $100. I'll let you figure out how much we spent. You can never have too much fabric.

When we got home, we wanted to power wash our patio, because we are having a family party Saturday afternoon. I needed to get it done yesterday while it was warm. From the pictures, you can see that the patio wasn't the only thing that got wet. I got it finished, and it looks a lot better.

Last night Devon had a cub scout program for all the boys that had awards. He got enough to become a wolf, and even though his picture doesn't show it, he was happy to be able to get his advancement. He is a very quiet child most of the time except when he is fighting with his sister. We were all happy for him.

Devon and his mother.
Thanks for visiting.

Monday, March 24, 2014

Beads and Taxes

Riverton, Utah High 57 Low 36

Today was quite a bit cooler than we are used to. It is supposed to warm up tomorrow, then get cold again with a chance of snow. There is a saying in Utah at this time of year, "If you don't like the weather now, just give it an hour."

Today we went to a bead store in Murray. It is nice, but is nowhere as large or nice as the one we went to in Tempe. Also their prices are a lot higher, but Cindy needed a few beads for a necklace she started, so we had to bite the bullet.

We plan on stocking up better next year when we are in Quartzsite and Mesa, and hopefully we will have learned enough to know what beads and supplies to buy. Also we want to go to bead week at North Ranch next March.

I spent a little time today putting away the thread I got in Mesa for my quilt machine. Cindy finished up a quilt, and dug out some material for a back she wants me to quilt. I'm still way behind on quilting.

This afternoon we worked on our taxes until we both got tired of them. I called our tax man and he told me I could bring the paperwork to him anytime we got it ready.

Not too much else going on, thanks for visiting.

Saturday, March 22, 2014

Made it Home

Riverton, Utah High 52 Low 28

When we left Hurricane this morning it was 54 degrees. We were a little concerned because the wind was blowing very hard, but when the sun got up a little, the wind quit. We had a pretty uneventful drive, with the exception of a little rain by Cedar City.

We have more cactus blossom pictures  to post that I wasn't able to last night. Also we got some photos through the Virgin River Gorge, and the Utah sign at the border

This was in Nevada almost to Las Vegas.
As we got higher in elevation, the thermometer kept dropping. As we got near to Utah County, it was time for lunch, and we decided to stop at one of our favorite restaurants, The Family Tree in Santiquin, Utah. It is located at 77 West Main off I 15 exit 244. It is a home style restaurant, and most meals are served with fresh scones. One of them today was 24 inches long. One of them is a meal by itself.

The Restaurant was once on an episode of Ghost searches on the Travel Channel. It is supposed to be one of the most haunted places in Utah. The following is from the Travel Channel's website.


Leslie’s Family Tree consists of two buildings that sit side by side. The building to the east which houses the restaurant is the younger of the two buildings. It was constructed by Wayne and Nan Smith in 1974. It acted as a sporting goods store and as the town's post office. In 1985 Wayne passed away leaving Nan to run the business solely. Nans dream was to have a restaurant that served home cooked style foods. In 1986 that dream took flight when she opened the Family Tree Restaurant. Today, that restaurant still stands under the name Leslies Family Tree ran by Nan’s daughter Leslie and her daughter Bobbie. It continues to serve homestyle foods and famous freshly made hot scones to the people of Santaquin.
The building to the west is a lot older. Although we could find little of its history we do know that it has been around for more than a hundred years. It has acted as a bomb shelter, an illegal gambling venue and a local bar. The building today acts as the restaurant's kitchen and storage facility.


The team was excited about this location. It seemed Leslie’s Family Tree had fallen under our radar. Voted in the top ten haunted places in Utah. The restaurant had slipped past our gaze until the airing of Travel Channels The Dead files which featured the restaurant. The location seemed packed with entities and from Stevens accounts the food wasn’t bad either.
The food was indeed good and with full stomachs we began setup. The group was large so we split of into three teams. Wendy would get her first shot at leading a team. Jared would lead team B and Brad team C. Each team took turns investigating each building and outside. Brads team headed outside while Jared’s team took the diner and Wendys the old bar. After 40 mins each team would rotate.


The night had its ups and downs. Each group had some sort of experience though nothing too out of the ordinary. With all the rumours and stories its a location that surprisingly had very little happen. It is a venue that we are eager to visit again stay tuned for our next visit. As for now the verdict remains undecided on its claims to be haunted.

As we got closer to Salt Lake, the traffic got worse and worse. Mable, my GPS, kept saying traffic ahead, but we were moving along pretty well until I couldn't get off the freeway and the freeway came to a standstill. There was an accident and we were going about 3 miles per hour, and it took us more than 30 minutes to go five miles. I was going to get off at the next exit, but traffic finally started moving and we were able to get to our exit. If you look over the cars on I 15 parking lot, you can see one one the snow covered mountains.

There is fresh snow on most of the mountains and it is a lot cooler here than we are use to. We are wondering why we are home. (Oh yes, to get our taxes done.)

Thanks for visiting.

Friday, March 21, 2014

Made it to Utah

Hurricane, Utah High 72 Low 48

Last night we got some pictures of some cactus blossoms in the cactus garden at the RV Park. They had some interesting flowers. Someone told Cindy that the flowers were 2 weeks earlier than usual.

I also got some more sunset pictures, but there wasn't a lot of color. I guess there were too many clouds. I won’t be able to put pictures on until we get better internet.

We left the campground at about 9:30 and headed toward Las Vegas and then to Utah on I 15. The ride to Las Vegas went very smoothly. After we turned onto I 15 there was some road construction, which slowed us down some, but nothing major.

We got to the Virgin River Gorge, and I remembered reading something about the construction in the early 1970’s. Arizona had built the freeway from the Nevada State line to Littlefield, about 12 miles. This part of the construction was completed in the mid 1960’s. The highway has little importance to Arizona, but was vital to Utah for being able to get to Las Vegas and Los Angeles. The highway through the Gorge was very hard and work on it progressed very slowly. Part of the problem was flash floods and quick sand destroying machinery. Strong winds crashed a helicopter, killing the pilot in October 1969. The Virgin River had to be re channeled 12 times making it the most expensive rural freeway in the nation at a cost of $10 million per mile (equivalent to $49 million in 2007 when the article was written). Even before its official opening in December 1973, it was heralded as the most scenic Highway in the State of Arizona. The Gorge also had road construction, which made a little bit of tight travel.

We are boondocking at Wal-Mart in Hurricane. We had been staying at the St George RV Resort (now KOA), but for some reason they won’t take longer rigs with Coast to Coast. We stayed there on January 2nd, but I guess their spaces must have shrunk. LOL We are fine with boondocking here for one night, and will be home tomorrow.

Thanks for visiting.

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Beading and Hanging Out

Fort Mohave,Arizona High 88 Low 61

Yesterday it blew all day. This morning when we got up the wind had stopped and it is supposed to get hot again.

Today I'm putting some sunset pictures on that I got the other night at Emerald Cove. There were lots of clouds, and I thought the sunset would be a lot more spectacular than it was, but oh well. As usual the color didn't last long, and it was soon gone. Sorry their not a pretty as I would have liked, but it is still nice to see an Arizona sunset.

 Yesterday when we were home bound, we finished two of Cindy's necklaces. I had to put the ends on them and a small piece of chain for the clasp to go into. The chain we had was too small, so we went to see if either of the bead stores in Bullhead City had larger chain. Neither of the store has a very large supply of bead supplies and seemed kind of expensive for what they did have, but the second one had a short piece of some chain we could use. We sure liked Quartzsite or Tempe's bead stores better, but they will have to wait till next year.

Tomorrow we are heading north some more and will either stop in Mesquite, Nevada or Hurricane, Utah. I guess it depends on how long I want to drive. We still plan on being home by late Saturday afternoon. How long we stay home depends on taxes and Doctor appointments.

Thanks for visiting.

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Windy Drive

Riverside RV Park, Fort Mohave, Arizona High 73 Low 54

It was extremely windy all night. Cindy could hardly get any sleep. I woke up several times, but managed to get some sleep.

This morning the wind was still blowing, and we debated whether to leave Earp or stay put. I asked the Park if we could extend with our Coast to Coast and they told me I would have to go through Coast to Coast. When I called C to C they told me it wasn't in the 72 hours’ notice and it was up to the Park. Do you follow the runaround I was getting? Well, neither did I.

We finally decided it was only supposed to be an hour and forty-five minute drive and we might as well try it. At first the drive wasn't too bad, but the further we went the worse the wind got. Along Highway 62 the wind was hitting us almost sideways, and the wind was picking up.

We made it to Highway 95 and were waved through the California produce checking station. Right after the junction there were a lot of trucks and RVs parked. It didn't take long for me to find out why. The speed limit was 55 for trailers, and I couldn't get much over 45 for quite a way. Along Highway 95 we had mostly head winds clear to Needles.

At Needles, we changed from going north to going mostly west. Again we had lots of side wind. I was glad it was only about 15 miles to the RV Park.

The wind has been blowing hard all the time we have been in this Park. It is supposed to let up a little later tonight. I hope so.

Our hour and Forty-five minute drive turned into almost 2 and a half hour. It was about the worst drive I remember having, but we made it OK.

We plan on being here until Friday, still headed toward home.

Thanks for visiting.

Monday, March 17, 2014

Now I Know

Earp, California High 90 Low 57

It is very windy today, not to forget how hot it is. The weather today seems more like August temperatures at home. Still a lot nicer than all the snow. I guess I should be glad.

We will be leaving here tomorrow and going to Bullhead City and will stay there for 3 days. We are still slowly working our way home.

I found out today why It takes me so long to remember things. According to scientific thinking elderly people have so much information in their brain that it takes them longer to access it, scientists believe. Older people do not decline mentally with age, it just takes them longer to recall facts because they have so more information stored in their brains. Much like a computer struggles as the hard drive gets full, so do humans take longer to access information. Researchers say this slowing down is not the same as cognitive decline. "The human brain works slower in old age," said Dr. Michael Ramscar,"but only because we have stored more information over time. The brains of older people do not get weak. On the contrary, they simply know more."

And here I thought it was just me. So next time I don't remember you name, remember it's only because I know so many people. So, I hate to admit it, but I guess I'm one of the old people. On my last birthday in February, I turned 72. Wow! How did I get this old. I can still remember when I could buy a two pack of Twinkies for 7 cents. I remember my Dad buying a new 1952 Chevrolet for $2300.00. My first car was a 1947 Chevrolet, and the first  car I bought new was a 1966 Chevrolet, I got it with every option available for $3900.00. When I started driving, gas was 24.9 cents per gallon and back then there were gas wars, where once the price got down to 19.9 cents per gallon. The flip side of this is when I got my first real job, I was making $3.79 an hour.

Sorry, I didn't intend for this to be a trip down memory lane, but I have been blessed with good health and a wonderful wife. So, for the next while, I want to see more of the USA and Canada. There are still a lot of wonderful places I would like to visit. In spite of all that's wrong with our two countries, it is still the best place on earth to live.

Thanks for visiting.

Sunday, March 16, 2014

North Ranch, Yard Sales, Beading, and more Cactus Pictures.

Emerald Cove RV Resort High 88 Low 59
Friday morning we went over to meet Jana and Mike at their motorhome. They are a really nice couple and we spent some time getting to know them. We had mentioned that Cindy wanted to get into beading, and as we were leaving, Jana mentioned that the lot next to them was having a yard sale and had beads and supplies for sale. At that, Cindy quit trying to leave and went next door. I mentioned yesterday that Cindy did her part in reducing their inventory. I noticed that Jana also bought some glasses, and did her part.

Cindy, busy checking out the bead yard sale.
We went to the Club House, where the beaders were busy. We worked on a necklace which I have got a picture on this post. The pendant is one I bought for Cindy when she was laid up with her back in Alaska. I think it turned out nice. Most of the beads are aqua-marine which we bought in Quartzsite. We also work on another necklace, which is not finished.

The pendant came from Alaska.

Lots of bead supplies.

After beading, we listened to the end of the musical jam.

Because of beading, we missed Al and Kelly, and I feel bad about that.

Saturday morning there were yard sales everywhere in the Park. We ran into Mike and Pat McFall, and Mike and Jana while we were out. By the Club House, in the RV Parking, one lady had a large supply of beads and fittings. She does it as a business and had lot of stuff.

We left North Ranch at about 10:00. The drive to Parker was a little windy, and I got in a fight with Mabel (my Garmin GPS). She wanted me to go a different direction than I wanted to go. She was showing the correct time of arrival, until I wouldn't make one of the turns she wanted me to, and all of a sudden an extra hour and a half showed up. I knew the way, but just wanted an estimate on arrival time. We got to the corner, where I was supposed to turn right on Parker Dam Road, and she said turn left. Just for fun I looked to see where she was taking me and we were supposed to go on 62 for 45 minutes, hit 95 and turn around and come back on 62 for forty-five minutes and then drive the 6 miles to our destination. Look at all the time I saved by just turning right instead of left. Sometimes I don’t understand what is going on with the GPS, but have learned that it is a good idea to know the approximate roads I want to go on.
After we got here there was a craft show going on, and Cindy got out and went to it while I unhooked and set up. (Sandi have I ever told you how much I like the level up system?) It was extremely hot here and the AC had to run until about 11:00 last night to keep us cool.

Last but not least, some more cactus flower pictures.

It is very hot for us today, but I guess we better enjoy it, for we will be home in a week.

Thanks for visiting.