Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Shifting Gears

Monday morning I had no real plans for the immediate future. Tuesday morning we were making plans to go to Dallas for a class Rick was invited to attend. Tuesday afternoon we were on the road, and tonight we are in Marietta, GA. I shifted so quickly I think I might have stripped a gear or two!

Monday we were at the hospital with Rick's grandmother (she got to go home by the way) and Rick got a call to go to West Virginia. He turned it down, and in just a few minutes he got a call from his company wanting him to attend a class in Dallas the end of this week. We decided it would be a good thing for him to go since it was an "invitation only" class. Tuesday morning around 10:00 a.m. Rick got another call from the deployment office that started us packing. We left home about 4:00 yesterday afternoon, and now we are in another time zone!

We drove part of the way, stopped for the night, and then put in another 13.5 hours on the road today. Did you know that between Amarillo, Texas and Marietta, GA you can run the battery down on your Palm Pilot playing solitaire, nap, finish an embroidery project, nap, listen to everything on Sirius radio from 70's hits and Christian pop to NASCAR talk radio, nap, and still be board out of your gourd? The fact that we had traveled the part of the road from Amarillo to Little Rock just about a week ago and again the week before that didn't help. The drive will be much prettier when the trees get leaves back on them.

We lost an hour in our day crossing into the Eastern Time Zone. I stay so mixed up. My brain is too old for this. I never know if it is time to get up or go to bed. It is really dark outside and I am really tired right now, so I'll try the latter.

Monday, February 25, 2008

Locust, West Wind, and the IRS

Ex. 10:19 And the Lord changed the wind to a very strong west wind, which caught up the locusts and carried them into the Red Sea. Not a locust was left anywhere in Egypt. (NIV)

We don't have any locust we need to get rid of, but we've got the west wind that would do it. We have one of those little decorative windmills in our front yard. It is spinning so fast that the blades look like a solid piece of metal. Last night the weather man said we could have gusts over 50 mph. He knew what he was talking about. The fifth wheel is rocking, my sinuses are hurting, and my nerves are already on edge. Rick is needing to make some repairs on our rig, but to do so he will need to loosen the underbelly and roll around on the ground. Since we have been home it has been too cold or too wet. Today it is warm and dry, but if he pulled the underbelly off today it would be like the locusts in the day of the Egyptian plagues. We might have to gather it from the Red Sea to get it put back on.

I'd love to be out and about today, enjoying the warm temperatures, but trying to stand up outside is a bit of a challenge. So, I guess I'll stay in and try to work on our taxes. (Makes me think of the locust that took everything the hail left behind.) If only the west
wind could take care of the IRS!

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Leap Year and Bad News

It is leap year. That means that this month will have an extra day, and Grandma Selma (Rick's grandmother) will have her "real" birthday. She was born on February 29, 1912. In just a few days this sweet woman will be 96 years old. She has been an active inspiration to many people including her family. Though she weighs only 73 pounds, she is a true matriarch by every definition of the word

Today we learned she has cancer. We are still in that "vacuum" where you have to let bad news sink in before you can start to cope. Your prayers are appreciated. I invite you to remember her especially on her special day.

Five generations of which I am so proud.

Monday, February 18, 2008

Home Again So Soon?

Yeah, here we are again. This was the shortest deployment Rick has ever had. I can't say that we had a wonderful time either. We both ended up so sick we were starting to wonder if we were going to make it, or if someone would find us "gone home for good!" Rick continued to work even though he felt bad, so he was finished in about five days. The campground didn't have Wi-Fi so blogging didn't happen. It was a "bla" trip.

As we started to feel like we might actually live past one more coughing fit, it turned cold and rainy. It rained three days in a row while we tried to outlive the fever.

Now we are home, still coughing, but feeling much better. I just pulled the stitches out of Rick's finger, so it is doing better as well. We've got some repairs to make on the fifth-wheel before we head back out again, so for now that will be our focus.

I'm more ready for spring than before so the ice that is in the forcast is not anticipated with glee. Oh well, the groundhog did see his shadow you know! I'll enjoy the days ahead with the kids and grand kids even if the sun refuses to break through the clouds.

Monday, February 11, 2008

As Unpredictable As The Weather

Well, you just never know from one day to the next where I'll be or what I'll be doing.
On Feb. 4th, just one week ago, Rick finished his last claim in Idaho. Tuesday he started for home. Wednesday he was deployed again, this time to Arkansas. Thursday evening he made it home to Amarillo. I again poked all my "essentials" in paper sacks and hauled them back out to the fifth wheel in preparation to hit the road Friday morning.

We got off to a rough start. The stabilizing jacks stopped working as we were getting ready to leave. After cranking them up by hand we headed out. As all you full timers know, there is at least one time in your traveling life that you have taken off with the steps of your RV hanging out. This was one of those times.

There are a couple of wagon wheels at the entrance to our driveway. You guessed it. As we pulled out of the drive, we hung the steps on one of the wheels and bent them up a bit, partially breaking off the bottom step. In his too zealous efforts to straighten the steps enough to fold them up, Rick cut his finger. It was deep and obviously needed stitches. So...

We stopped by the Urgent Care Center on our way out of town. About five hours, six stitches, and -229 dollars later we were on the road again. (Somehow the medical facility has lost touch with the idea of "Urgent.") The place was full of people with colds, flu, and upper respiratory infections. So...

We arrived in Benton, Arkansas Saturday (in six weeks Rick put about 7000 miles on our truck) and now we both are sick with a cold, or the flu, or a respiratory infection (or all of the above if that is possible). Yesterday I wasn't sure I was going to make it, but today I feel a little better. Rick is just starting with the aching and coughing today.

So far, Rick has been assigned only 11 claims. If he doesn't get any more, we will be finished up here by the end of the week. You know the old saying, "win a few lose a few." This trip looks like the latter. We would like to be reassigned from here, but aren't getting our hopes up. I'll keep you posted.

But for now, I'll take some multi-symptom cold and flu medication and call it a night.

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

To Calm the Soul

Sometimes you just need to breath deeply and relax. I hope this post will help you do just that. Here are a couple of scenes I've captured that lower my blood pressure and remind me that my God is a creative Master. A California view, and ...

a Texas sunset.

Sunday, February 3, 2008

What's It Like in Idaho?

I received this picture from Rick this morning. He has gotten another 10 inches of snow today. Wish I was there. At least the snow would be a nice break from the wind and dirt that is in the air here. And the big plus would be that we could drink hot coco and cuddle on the couch! Snow can be nice.