Friday, October 31, 2008

10/31/08 Halloween in Quail Run

Tonight we had our first "big" event, the Halloween Party. I asked our park manager how many we should prepare for and she told me 40 - 45. I emailed DeAnn, last year's Activity Director, and asked how many she had last year and she came up with the same number. OK, works for me!

To balance out the room with the same number of tables on each side we actually had seating for 72. Overkill but at least the room looked balanced. Not knowing what kind of costumes we would be seeing we wanted to leave lots of space between the tables. That was another thing, how many would dress in costumes. I heard from my sources, half and half. I did encourage all the Activities people to dress and for some this was the first time they were in Halloween costumes as adults. Bob and I have attended several Halloween parties so this was nothing new to us.

We spent the day time work hours setting up tables and chairs, getting the snacks we would serve ready, icing down sodas and setting out paper goods.

I sent everyone home early so that they had plenty of time to get ready for the night's activities.

Well, we certainly had a larger crowd than we expected! Within five minutes of the seven o'clock start time we had to set up six more tables. I watched them come through the door and the costumes were fantastic! We ended up with a total of ninety four party animals and all but a half dozen were in costume! I am pleased to say our first party was a HUGE success!

We received comment after comment about how much fun it was. It was nice to hear that but if you think about it, it wasn't because of the tables/chairs we set up, the snacks we provided or even the decorations we put up. It was a good party because old friends were getting together for the first time since last spring, people were enjoying their new friends they've made this year and as usual our DJ, Cactus Carl, knew what it would take to get everyone up on the dance floor. But we'll take the nice compliments all the same.

Some of the costumes we saw....

What would Halloween be without the Grim Reaper?


Doesn't every party need a Whoopie Cushion and full size penguin?


Here's Marlene as a "wash woman" complete with a full clothesline! See the box of Tide attached to her bandana?


Bill and Kim, our resident monk and devil woman.


Every Halloween party needs an Asian flair.


I do believe a bearded nun is also a must have to make a Halloween complete!


I think this costume took Tom back to his youth! He told me the day before that I wouldn't know him and he was right! This looks NOTHING like Tom in real life! I had talked to him a couple of times and didn't realize who I was talking with! I was just amazed to find out who this was. I should get a picture of him sans costume and post them side by side. You just won't believe the difference. I'll work on that.


Bob in his pirate costume.


Ohhhh,,,,Sandy, our line dance instructor is gonna kill me for this..... sorry my friend.


Bill and Pat as a big butt pirate and Dr. Kevorkian. That sign on the hack saw says, "Pain Killer".


A good time was had by all!

Thursday, October 30, 2008

10/27-30/08 I Will Get Caught Up...I Will Get Caught Up

I'm determined to get this caught up TODAY!

What have we done this past week? Bob has been busy doing all kinds of stuff around the house. I can't tell you exactly what but I know tools have been involved because I've seen them laying around when I come home for lunch. I do know he got his bike road ready again as I noticed the pumped up tires. Mine are still flat but he will fix them if I promise to ride it. I did and I will.

One day he must have been in the cleaning mode because I came home at lunchtime and found all of the mini-blinds hanging from the ladder drying. Windows and screens were cleaned too! I am so lucky thankful when he takes care of things like that.

We had the first Activity that we had to cancel due to lack of participation. We had a Baked Potato/Dessert luncheon on the calendar for Tuesday but on Monday I had to pull the plug on it because only four people signed up for it. I think it was a good idea for a lunch menu and I'll reschedule it for later in the year. It will be cooler then and that may make a difference. While we're not in the triple digits any longer we haven't been out of the mid-90's either and I know Bob and I are eating lighter because of the heat. Its just too hot to eat!

I did have one thing happen this week and I have debated on whether or not to write about it here yet. I had made up my mind that I would wait another week or so but we all had such a good laugh over this I find that I can't wait any longer and I've got to tell you what I've been up to.

On Monday, on my way to the Activities Building, I was stopped three times and asked if I was OK. I answered in the affirmative each time with a cheerful, "I'm fine, how are you" and kept going. It didn't really strike me as odd because I happened to have had a lot on my mind as I was walking along and I guess because it is customary, or maybe its even a LAW, that you greet everyone you pass in a RV park that I heard their questions and even answered them, but didn't really HEAR what was being asked. Does that make sense?

Anyway, on Tuesday I walk into my line dancing session and Sandy, our instructor, points to me and says, "Snookie, are you ok?" I smiled and answered yes and continued on with the conversation I was having. Sandy then says, "See me after class". I nodded OK and walked over to take my place on the floor. Well, after class I had some Activities stuff to deal with and she was busy with people asking her questions and we never got together and I didn't think about it anymore until after dinner. As I sat on the porch I got to thinking about Sandy and then it all started to fall into place for me. I've been asked ALOT if I'm OK in the past two days. I had to find out what was going on.

I headed to Sandy and Carl's. I walked up to their place and when I knocked on the door I was ushered in with Sandy's arm around me and she started questioning me. Sandy: Are you OK Snook?

Me: Yeah, I'm fine.

Sandy: You're sure?

Me: Yeah, I'm fine.

Sandy: Are your parents OK?

Me: Yeah, last time I talked to them they were.....WHY? Why is everyone asking me if I'm OK?

Sandy: Well, I heard they asked for prayers for you in the church service on Sunday and everyone is wondering if you're OK.

NOW it all made sense! I started laughing. Sandy and Carl looked at me with a puzzled look on their faces and I explained to them what that was all about.

When I had attended church services the week prior the pastor had asked if anyone had any prayer requests. Several people had raised their hands and asked for prayers for loved ones and friends who were facing difficult times. I raised my hand and asked for prayers for myself. The following week, when I slept in too late to attend, the pastor's wife remembered me at prayer time but didn't explain WHY I was being prayed for.

So now I'll tell you why. As of today, Nov. 2, I have been a NON-SMOKER for three weeks! THREE WEEKS! I'm on the Chantix program and it works! Well, this time it is working. I tried this once before but I went back to smoking. I've always heard that you have to WANT to quit in order for these pills, or a patch, or hypnosis to work. I know, I've tried them all.

My dad has asked me to quit for him. Sorry Dad, I couldn't do it for you, I had to do it for ME, in my own time and the time is now.

For the most part I don't even think about it anymore unless someone asks me how I'm making out with it. I have even stopped taking the pills and I'm doing fine without them. Should I have a relapse I still have three weeks left to get me back on track but I really don't think I'll need them.

So there it is. While I don't feel comfortable saying I've QUIT, because after all I've been down this road before, I feel comfortable in thinking that I really have this time. I think I really have. Say a prayer for me.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

10/26/08 I Had the Best of Intentions

When I went to bed last night I had every intention of getting up this morning and attending the church services here in the park. I am not a regular church go-er and decided that it was time for me to turn over a new leaf, if you will, and start attending on a regular basis.

Church services start at ten. I woke up at ten of. That in itself is unheard of! I can't remember the last time I slept so late. Granted, I haven't been sleeping well lately and I probably needed it but like I had said, I had the best of intentions.

Since I'm used to getting up hours earlier I felt the like the day was half over before I even got started! I was going to get so much done today! Laundry, I was going to the pool, I was going to the store. None of those things happened. I was a slug all day!

Bob wasn't much better. He didn't sleep as late but he didn't do anything outside either. Of course his finger is still giving him a bit of a problem so he has a reason.

We're very much into the World Series right now. Our Philadelphia Phillies are playing!

I'm a great believer in writing letters to companies about their products whether it be a good experience or a not so good experience. I've also written many a letter to restaurants to let them know we've had a great meal/service or a not so great meal/service. (The restaurants with the not so great meals/service will often send you gift certificates for free meals with their letter of apology.) I recently came across this letter that a lady wrote to a major company and I thought I'd share with you.

Dear Tide:

I am writing to say what an excellent product you have! I've used it all of my married life, as my Mom always told me it was the best. Now that I am in my fifties I find it even better! In fact, about a month ago, I spilled some red wine on my new white blouse. My inconsiderate and uncaring husband started to belittle me about how clumsy I was and generally started becoming a pain in the neck. One thing led to another and somehow I ended up with his blood on my new white blouse! I grabbed my bottle of Tide with bleach alternative and to my surprise and satisfaction all of the stains came out! In fact, the stains came out so well the detectives who came by yesterday told me that the DNA tests on my blouse were negative and then my attorney called and said that I was no longer considered a suspect in the disappearance of my husband. What a relief! Going through menopause is bad enough without being a murder suspect! I thank you, once again, for having a great product.
Well, gotta go, have to write to the Hefty bag people.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

10/25/08 Activities Team is Just the BEST!

What a great bunch we have on the Activities Staff this year! We were thrown a few curve balls today concerning the Celebration of Life for our friend Joe but they took it all in stride and went with the flow.

In the end, the problems were overcome, the celebration was nice and many of those present today were none the wiser. Don't ya just love it when a plan all comes together? These team members kept me grounded when the going got rough today and for that I'm thankful.

We had about 180 present for the service and we were prepared for seating 205. The park residents brought food for the luncheon and there was a good variety to pick from.

After the service we all went outside and and fifty one of Joe's nearest and dearest released balloons up to the heavens.






We stood there until they floated out of sight.

Friday, October 24, 2008

10/24/08 What a Day!

I knew this was going to be a busy day but I feel like I've been run ragged. Not all of the workampers are here as yet so I asked all the teams to come in today to help set up for the services tomorrow.

No one objected to being called in to work, as they kept reassuring me that with all the days they were sent home at ten and noon it was the least they could do. So every table we had was set up, chairs pulled from everywhere for more seating and the pool patio set up for additional seating if needed. The teams got busy covering the tables with plastic sheeting, cloth tablecloths were ironed for the family tables, song sheets were copied and distributed to the tables, everything was readied for the food that would be coming tomorrow, tea was made and this was all just in the morning hours.

Kim and I took off in the early afternoon to pick up the flowers and balloons the family wanted and some other workampers went to pick up round tables. Now I don't know where my head was when we were talking about the balloons for the stage but it definitely was not on the task at hand.

We get to the party store, pick up all we need and head back. Jeannie had said we'll fill them tomorrow morning with compressed air, put them in bouquets and tie them to weights to hold them in place on the stage. Yep, all systems are go.

I was back in the office talking with Gayle about the order of things for tomorrow and this light bulb went off all of a sudden. Compressed air???? Its still air, just plain air. Gravity is going to take over here and the balloons will be hanging off the stage and on the floor. Back to the main office I go to tell Jeannie this isn't going to work. Luckily, she's going to town and will drop the balloons off to be filled with helium and be ready for pick up tomorrow morning.

One of the family members came up and looked at all we had done to get ready for tomorrow and we got a big thumbs up.

Its been a long, crazy day and I'm glad its over!

Thursday, October 23, 2008

10/23/08 Karaoke Anyone?

Another milestone passed on the counter! 40,000 hits and the reader to hit it was Shelley, our friend from Quail Run!

I couldn't wait for the work day to get over with today! We're having our first get together after work.

Our workday was busy as it was as Activities has been tasked with getting the El Carnaval Room ready for the Celebration of Life service for our resident who passed on earlier this week.

Flowers to order, balloons to order/pick up, round tables to rent, Halloween decorations to take down, plastic flatware that had to be wrapped and the list went on and on.

Finally the days end finally got here and it was time to sing with our new friends. Let me explain that. Jim and Mary carry a karaoke set up with them and as it turns out Jim has a very nice voice.

He was already singing when we arrived at four.


Fourteen of us, chairs and drinks in hand, settled around and under their awning, sitting back and listening to Jim entertain us. The songs we knew the words to we joined in on and the ones we didn't, well, we just sat there and enjoyed it all.


That is until April got started. Here's April looking over the song book.


Soon after starting the afternoon session she scooted over to read the words on the computer screen. Next thing we know she's signing the words as Jim sings them. Well, she had us in stitches, practically rolling on the ground.

I'm guessing the song lyrics to this song she is signing was something like..... Ooh, baby, baby.


Here's she signing to Eddie Arnold's "Make the World Go Away" where the lyrics are something like take the weight off my shoulders.


I'm here to tell you right now that the lower the level the wine got in her bottle the funnier she got. We all had a good laugh watching her! I should clarify this, I'm by no means implying she was drunk, she definitely was NOT, but lets face it, a little bit wine does make us less inhibited.

Another winter resident who keeps us amused is John Casey. Casey, as we call him is from Ireland and has that Irish brogue that I just love to listen to. He's also got a wicked sense of humor!


Soon darkness fell and it was time to call it a night. Everyone headed home, bidding each other a good night and Bob and I walked back to our rig, smiling all the way.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

10/20 - 22/08 A Few Days A Time

OK, OK, I've gotten behind on this once again. I don't like it any better than you do but it happens from time to time. I'm going to get this caught up and I promise to do my best to KEEP it caught up.

So what has gone on in the past few days? Well, I've been working in Activities, taking the line dancing sessions and just generally living life.

On the other hand, Bob has been sidelined. He cut his finger pretty deep and he just can't do much with it since it keeps opening every time he bends it. He finally put a really short pencil under the finger and taped it to it, his own homemade splint. It doesn't help him use that hand but at least the bleeding has stopped. Between you and me I think he should have had stitches but he doesn't agree.

We have neighbors! Bill and Pat right across the street came back. It was soooo good to see them,,,,and their lights on at night. More and more are showing up in the park now.

The fellow I told you about the other day, the one who had the stroke at the pool, I'm sorry to say he passed on. Joe is very well liked in this park and will be missed by many.

So that takes care of these three days. Just life going by and that's ok.


Eagles may soar, but weasels don't get sucked into jet engines.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

10/19/08 What a Beautiful Day in the Desert....

Today was just the best day in the desert! It was sunny but not too hot.

I had plans of going to the pool today but somehow just never made it there for some reason.

I did accomplish getting some laundry done and that was a major job out of the way. I've been putting it off for forever it seems and we got to the point that we would be going to the laundry bags for clothes instead of our drawers/closets if I didn't get it done.

We've had a few more people come into the park but still no one on our street. I don't know what everyone is waiting for in getting here. Jeannie, our park manager, told me that we should have quite a few arriving in the next week or so. Please, let it be somebody on our street!

I don't know if I'm having writer's block, or what, but I'm having a hard time writing this lately. There just isn't anything going on worth telling you about but on the other hand if I don't after a few days I start getting emails asking if we're ok or why haven't I been writing the blog. I DO appreciate those emails! Unfortunately, they don't give me anything to write about. Hmmmm, a whole paragraph about not writing anything. Hey, works for me!


We could learn a lot from crayons...

Some are sharp, some are pretty and some are dull. Some have weird names, and all are different colors, but they all have to live in the same box.

10/18/08 Another Weekend Already!

Once again the week just flew by! The teams are spending most of the day with me now as I'm finding more and more for them to do. Of course it doesn't hurt that the team on for the last three days only has 2 of its members here so far.

Though I didn't know what it was for at the time we did have a helicopter land nearby to pick up one of our residents for transport to the hospital in Phoenix. It seems one of the winter residents had a stroke while at the pool. I haven't heard anything since so I'm hoping all is going well.

I guess I didn't pay too much attention to it because Border Patrol has really stepped up air surveillance and have been making lots of busts on illegal immigrants in this area. A helicopter is nothing unusual to see here now.

Today Bob and I pretty much lazed around the house. We did venture out to run some errands but other than that not a whole lot until late afternoon.

Today Jeannie, our park manager, and her husband John, hosted a cookout for the workampers. They supplied the hamburgers/rolls and drinks and we brought everything else. As you can well imagine, we had plenty of food!


Some of the workampers who work in Activities.

Meet Steve, one of the nicest people you'd ever want to meet!


His wife, April. She's lots of fun and makes me laugh.


These next three are from the left, Kim, Mary and Jim. Jim is just a sweetheart! He's the one who taken over doing the park newspaper.


Kim and Mary. What can I say about these two? You know how it is, good help is so hard to find. (I know they are reading this) Seriously, I just love working with these two! We laugh all day and somehow the work still gets done and a lot of it at that!

This is Jim and George. Both very nice fellows and willing to do anything that needs to be done. Good guys to have around!


Our park manager, Jeannie. She's on fly-shooing duty, she's not in line to get something to eat with that plate in her hand.


That was one thing we couldn't understand. Last year we never had flies but we sure had them today! Hundreds of them it seemed. Someone said we had them because they just laid manure in the surrounding fields since the cotton was all picked. I'll just be glad when they are gone!

It was a very nice cookout, meeting new people, talking with those that came back from last year and spending time with the Activities staff in a non-work situation.


Accept that some days you're the pigeon, and some days you're the statue.

Friday, October 17, 2008

10/17/08 Pool Party in the SHADE!

Today we had our first Happy Hour at the pool. It started at three and I must say that was just much too early for this time of year.

We had about thirty people come to the pool and of course they brought what they were drinking and some snacks to share. It was soooo hot! How hot you are wondering? Hot enough that no one got in the pool because we couldn't leave the shade! THAT hot! We're in the mid 90's right now but boy oh boy is that sun strong.

I was out walking around our rig yesterday and took notice of this bush/tree that was trimmed recently. Either the one who did was very angry or doesn't have a clue on how to trim a bush! Is this sad looking or what?


On a happier note I found fruit that is turning ripe!


....and the trees are blooming.


Still no neighbors!

Thursday, October 16, 2008

10/16/08 Just Another Day in the Desert

Not too much going on today. Bob is still doing this and that around the rig. He's fine tuning our screen room by putting shelves up and we now have a "water feature" out there. We have a water fall type thing but it isn't up and running as yet.

I had my line dancing class this morning and the class has grown to about twenty participants. We all have plenty of room but I know it won't always be the case once others start arriving.

We're still the only ones on our street. I think I'm beginning to get a complex about this.


Teach a child to be polite and courteous and, when he grows up, he'll never be able to merge his car onto the freeway.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

10/15/08 A Watched Pot Never Boils....

Today marks our first event of the new season. Not that we have to do all that much but its the first time the residents are gathering for an activity. A potluck supper!

We started an hour later than usual this morning because we're working a split shift. The team arrived at ten and we promptly got to work setting up the tables and covering them with the white plastic table cloth type stuff.


Here's Chris and Carol getting the serving tables ready. Chris, in the forefront, used to be a campground owner with her husband Jim. Carol, in yellow, along with her husband George, used to workamp at Chris and Jim's campground. They became great friends and now travel the winter months together since they sold the campground.

The guys setting up chairs and putting out salt/pepper and sugar. (From left, Richard, Jim and George)


That done, our next task was iced tea making, hence the title of this post. Now last year, in all the months we were here, I was never given the job of making the iced tea nor was I ever around when it was made and therefore didn't have a clue as to how to do it. I've made iced tea at home many, many times but never for a five gallon container. Off to Jeannie I go to find out how many tea bags to use, the best way to do it and any other tips I could get from her. I didn't even know that we had these HUGE tea bags or that tea bags were even made that big! So Jeannie gave me the recipe for five gallons of iced tea and we got started. About 15 minutes later Jeannie happened to walk into the kitchen area but none of us heard her as we were all standing in front the stove staring intently at the pot, waiting for those first bubbles that would tell us water was starting to boil. She started laughing and said she didn't know that it took seven people to boil a pot a water. She also reminded us that this wasn't a government job and that it definitely did not take seven to make something as simple as a pot of tea.


We all got a laugh out of that and soon relaxed at the tables sharing funny stories of our RV adventues. So by some miracle we got it made and I heard it actually tasted pretty good....for unsweetened tea that is. Ewwww yuck! Soon it was noon and our morning shift was done. I sent the team on its way and I hung out for another hour following up on some phone calls.

We all met again at 4:30 as the potluck started at five. At a quarter till our guests started arriving and by 5:05 all forty eight of them arrived, dishes to share in hand. I made the welcoming remarks, Steve, one of the Activity Staff, said grace and it was time to dig in. Let me tell you right here and now, if anyone went home hungry it was their own fault.


We had only two little mistakes made. First, we had the food table up against the wall because crock pots were plugged in but we unplugged them very quickly and pulled the table away so the serving line could go down both sides of the table. That made the line move much quicker! Secondly, we didn't have dinner music playing. I just didn't think of it. Bob mentioned it as soon as I sat down and when Jeannie came in later she asked where the music was. Afterwards, talking to workampers and guests alike I found that it wasn't even missed and some were actually glad there wasn't any playing. I look at it this way, if these were the only two mistakes made,,,,WE DID GOOD!

So there it is, our first "event" if you will, down. Many, many more to go.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

10/14/08 First Day with a New Team

UGH! Whose idea was it to have an 8 am meeting? Today all workampers, well, the ones that are here anyway, met for an early morning meeting with Jeannie the park manager. As early as it was, it was a pleasant meeting. Jeannie told the newcomers of the rules, the do's and don't's and answered many questions. Jeannie had us laughing several times so it was a nice way to start the day even if we did have to get up earlier than usual.

I did think the questions went on and on because I was anxious to get out of there. My line dancing session started at nine and at nine-twenty hands were still being raised. People! Stop! You are cutting into my line dancing time! Finally at 9:30 the last question was answered and I beat feet to the Carnaval Room where it was all taking place. Oh it felt so good to be there! Sandy was her usual funny self and Cactus Carl was spinning good music. It didn't take long for me to remember lines were my friends and that if Sandy goofed up it wasn't a mistake but just a variation. It was a small class with maybe 10 of us present but I'm sure it will grow each week just like it did last year.

Today was the day the Red Team reported for work. Work. It is just so funny to call it that. I had the guys check out all the tables and chairs for missing corners (tables) and rubber feet (chairs). Someone had already fixed these things so they reported all is well. The library was taken care of in short order since only three books had been turned in. What do I do with them now? I'm finding I don't care for this time of year because there just isn't enough to do to go around. With only one computer that we can print with, well, it really limits on what I can delegate as far as computer work is concerned.

We sat and tossed around ideas for things to do this winter as far as projects/trips/events we can do. They tossed out some pretty good ideas too!

At noon we broke for lunch and when they returned I still had nothing for them to do. They hung around anyway like troopers and we talked. A nice way to get to know these folks. They'll have plenty to do tomorrow. Our first potluck dinner takes place! The season is starting!

Monday, October 13, 2008

10/13/08 Another Work Week Begins....

Today is the last day I'll work with this team. For six days anyway. Our teams work three days on and six off. Nine to three with an hour for lunch, don't YOU wish you worked here?

We finished up the last of the computer cleanup and continued making posters and tickets. Once again, Jim worked from home so it was just us girls today. These two are so much fun to work with that the time just flies by.

I went and looked at the sign up sheet for the potluck dinner on Wednesday, thirty six so far have signed up. Since I never attended a potluck last year I don't know if this is good or not. There are only seventy two sites occupied in the park so far. We still have more time and I'm hoping more decide to join us. Everyone listed what they were bringing and believe me, we are going to have a feast!

It was a beautiful 80 degrees here today. Doesn't it figure, I go back to work and the weather is perfect.

I am so proud of my sister-in-law Michelle. She is a five year breast cancer SURVIVOR and on Sunday she participated in the Making Strides Against Breast Cancer walk. Not only did she participate by walking she made the top 10 list for donations! Her family and friends pledged $2,470.00! Great job Michelle. (Now you know why this is so important to me.)

A short post today as it sometimes happens.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

10/12/08 Just a Gentle Breeze

The wind died down over night and today we just have a gentle breeze. Sand and dirt aren't blowing and its in the mid-70's. Bearable as long as the wind doesn't blow.

By early afternoon I just had to get out of the house. I took a walk over to visit with Cactus Carl and his wife Sandy, our line dance leaders. I was happy to hear that line dancing will start this coming Tuesday. Activities are starting!

There's still no one on our street. We have no neighbors and this is really starting to bother me. I'm a "people person" and like knowing that I can run next door to visit if the walls seem to be closing in. I emailed our friends and asked each when they were coming down. Not soon enough! We probably won't have neighbors until the beginning of November. Three more weeks and I'm counting the days! Now don't get me wrong, we have people around us if I walked to the end of our street and kept going for a little ways. Its not the same, I want my friends/neighbors HERE. Hear that guys, start packing and get your butts down here!

I put a pot roast in the crock pot today for dinner and the house smells oh so good. That smell ranks right up there with the aroma of cookies right out of the oven, suntan lotion, puppy breath and a freshly opened bag of M&M's.

Speaking of M&M's, did you know that October is the month that you can buy the pink ones? It's the time of year that the M&M company donates hundreds of thousands of dollars to the Susan G. Komen Foundation. Do your part in addition to CLICKING THE PINK ICON, go buy a bag of M&M's.

I can't wait to see what this week brings. We're having our first "event" this coming Wednesday, our first potluck dinner. Since everyone has to bring a dish to share there is no cooking involved for us but this will be the first time of many that the team will set up tables and chairs. I haven't even looked at the sign up sheet, I hope lots are signing up for this.

That's it for today! Oh yeah, the pot roast? DELICIOUS!

Saturday, October 11, 2008

10/11/08 The Cold Front.....

.....came through last night and brought cold weather, to us, with it! Its been windy all day and we can see dirt and sand blowing through the air. One of the perils of living in the desert to be sure.

We got up this morning and had to turn on the electric heaters. We wanted cooler weather but not this cool!

There won't be anything going on outside today thats for sure. Its much too windy....and cold. I'm mean really, its in the low 70's out there! That's a big difference from the triple digits we have been having.

A few more people have arrived in the park, mostly park model residents.

We just don't know what to do with ourselves today. We don't need anything from the store, we have no errands to run, there's just nothing to do. So we did our usual staying in the house stuff. We read, we watched TV, we played our computer games and got some cleaning in.

Life can be rough sometimes.

Friday, October 10, 2008

10/10/08 WHERE Did This Week Go???

Oh my gosh! It's Friday already. I really don't know where this week went. It feels like it should only be Wednesday. Don't get me wrong, I'm not complaining but I sure hope every week doesn't go this fast. That would be life passing much too quickly.

We had a visitor in the office today. I had gotten notice when I arrived about a golf tournament being held that would benefit the Arizona Children's Christmas Party so I left a message for Val, the lady who heads this whole thing, to let her know that she could count on Quail Run for gifts, money, the tree and gift wrappers. She stopped in to let us know that she appreciated the call and would certainly welcome us to gift wrap all the gifts like we did last year. She went on to say that the golf tournament was a huge success and that they had 148 golfers involved. That effort alone raised over $5500.00! On November 1st there is going to be a motorcycle poker run as another fund raiser and she said participation for that so far is more than she ever dreamed. The kids should have a good year this year!

I met the new team that came in today. I forget their first names right now but there is no way I'll forget the next part! She is a former caterer! That is going to help so much with planning meals, recipes and how much to buy. I am the luckiest Activities Director on earth!

This afternoon Kim, Mary and I spent the time cleaning up the computer. (Jim is still working at home designing the newsletter) We opened each file and determined what years folder it belonged to and which file it should go in. We still have some fine tuning to do but everything is pretty much in its place now and easily accessible. Thank you Kim and Mary!

Mary took off at 3:15, yep, time got away from us again and Kim and I stayed until 3:45 to finish up the last little bit that had to be gone through.

It was a good day!

Thursday, October 9, 2008

10/9/08 Working With the Blue Team This Week

As I've already told you, Jim is going to be taking care of our newspaper/letter, whatever you want to call it. He took copies of last year's to get an idea of what goes into it and then went home to set up the paper on his computer. He's done desktop publishing and he said he's going to change the format of the paper. I can't wait to see how its going to come out. Jim worked from home all day.

Mary, along with Kim worked in the office with me. Now Kim has had a rough time getting here. She and her husband Bill just started full-timing on September 22 of this year. They bought a brand new motor home and on the way here the engine broke, malfunctioned DIED. They had it towed to Phoenix where a new engine will be put in it. Thank heavens it is all under warranty. They are in a motel close by until they get their rig back early next week, if all goes well. Keep your fingers crossed for them. Say a prayer.

Kim will be the person on the Blue Team who will be taking care of Channel 27. I found out today she is a computer whiz! Luckily, Steve happened to drop into the office when he was returning library books and he had a few minutes to tell Kim what she needs to know to get new messages on, make changes and delete old ones. She then went through the instructional papers to find out how to change fonts and colors.

Mary and I spent the morning getting rid of old files in the filing cabinet. We found stuff that went back as far as '02. Some stuff just has to go sometimes.

In the afternoon we got back to more flyers and tickets. Its not that it takes all that long to change dates and print them, what is time consuming is finding what you want. We found flyers dated back to '05. Kim says she can help us get everything filed, nice and neat. I think that would be a great help for us and future years.

We were so involved with what we were doing today that when we took notice of the clock it was already 3:30. We worked a half hour beyond what is required. We won't let that happen again!

Our screen room is up, the mat is laid, the tables and chairs are in place and our outside decorations are up. Its all coming together. Slowly but surely.

Its Survivor night so I got dinner out of the way early. Even though we've been out west for some time now, we're still getting used to prime time TV starting at seven instead of the usual to us, eight.

I can't wait to get to work tomorrow and spend the day with Mary and Kim cleaning up the computer!

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

10/8/07 The End of White Teams Week

Today is was pretty much more of the same. Steve worked some more on the Channel 27 station, adding more events and tweaking what he already put on.

With only him and his wife, April, from the White Team here its a good thing that things are pretty slow. I was told today that another team member will arriving tomorrow and then another next week. I'll be glad when everyone is here. I'm ready to get the season started! I hope I don't see the day when I regret those words!

The White Team completed their first "week" today. I think they are pretty happy with what they've done and accomplished this week. Steve and April are a fun couple to be around and are certainly willing to pitch in and get things done. Just the kind of people that an Activities Team needs to be sure.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

10/7/08 Flyers and Tickets

Today Steve got Channel 27 up and running. This is a channel dedicated to our park activities. I've decided that one team member from each of the three teams will be taught how to put messages on the channel and take them off when needed. A file will be kept with new messages and changes and that will be that person's responsibility first thing each morning they work.

We worked a bit more on Halloween decorations and are pretty much done in that department. Probably a few things will have to be tweaked here and there. So far we've gotten good comments on how things look from the residents that are here.

This afternoon more flyers and tickets for upcoming shows were done. This is slower going than I would like but I'm finding previous flyers that were done are all over the place in the computer. We're not necessarily making up new flyers, we're using the ones from last year and just changing the dates. Hey, that works for me!

After work Bob and I went into Casa Grande to run a few errands. On the way we took notice of this cactus. Menacing looking isn't it?


It's cooled down to the mid-90's now and it is much more bearable. The only thing I've found about being here so early in the season, that I don't like, is that we don't have cold water coming out of the tap. Its very warm to hot usually. I guess the pipes aren't buried that low in the ground and they are getting warmed by the outside temps. Sometimes you just want cold water, you know? I better not complain too much or I could find myself in the middle of Arizona's coldest winter on record if I don't stop.

So far I'm extremely pleased with the Activities team members that are here. I think we've got a good bunch this year!

Monday, October 6, 2008

10/6/08 Back to the Work Week

Monday dawned bright and early. Too early. For some reason I was up at 5:30. I hope I don't make a habit of this!

Let's get this out of the way early,,,click the Pink! I'm going to do this until its a habit with you. Just keep telling yourself...One out of eight,,,One out of eight.

Today we started the Halloween decorating. Here's Gail busy at work.


April pulled a big blob of some kind of cotton, gauzy material out of a bag and hung it on a nail and started pulling. Wa-La! A spider's web!


Since we have all week to do this and its quite a warm we called it an early day today.

I spent a few more hours going through files to see what I can find and returning phone calls.

Bob spent his day starting the set up of the screen room. He also got a power strip set up and hidden away that will allow us to plug in a light, our radio or CD player. This will truly be more actual living space when he is done.

After dinner we settled in for TV as usual and it wasn't long before I was in bed since my day started much earlier than usual.

Sunday, October 5, 2008

10/5/08 A Trip to Tucson

Bob needed to go to Camping World in Tucson today if we are to get the screen room up any time soon. He wanted to get "ribs" to fit under the awning so that the awning will be taut and not flap in the wind when it comes up. These are something we could have done without, but with them it will make for a nicer room. So off to Tucson we go.

It was an uneventful trip as we had been this way before so it wasn't new scenery. Just your run of the mill desert and mountains on each side of the road. Ho-hum.

We got want we wanted in no time and headed back. Of course a beer/soda run was in order and I grabbed a few things in the grocery department while I was there. With fuel prices we consolidate trips nowadays as I'm sure you are doing too.

I did take notice of how "decorated" the overpasses were on the way home. This just fascinates me to no end. We just don't have anything like this in Delaware. I guess if we did it would be pictures of beakers because we're home to the DuPont company and known as the chemical capital or maybe a bank deposit slip because we're real big on banks too. Maybe we're better off with just the plain cement we're used to.


Before you go any further, go click the pink icon. Go ahead, I'm not typing another word until you do!

The park still isn't filling up. Of course we weren't here this early last year so maybe this is normal. Hopefully some more Activities workampers will come in this week.

After dinner I settled in for TV to watch Amazing Race and I have no idea what Bob watched. Thank heavens we are a two TV family!

Saturday, October 4, 2008

10/4/08 Ahhhh, A Day Off

At our park manager's insistence I took the day off. To tell you the truth she didn't have half the words out of her mouth and I was agreeing with her! Actually, unless we have something going on I will be off weekends. Of course most of our shows take place on the weekend so I'll be taking time off during the week once everything is in place and running smoothly. I know how many hours I'm supposed to put in per week as Activities Coordinator and I'm going to keep close count of the hours I work so that I don't get caught up into working a full time job and a half! That can happen.

Bob did some more of his projects around the house again today and I researched some things on the Internet. I also made a grocery run and got my haircut. Are you not just overwhelmed with all I pack into a day? Of course I won't mention here that our laundry bags are overflowing and that I haven't finished the thorough cleaning I was going to do. But I'll get it done, I'll get it done. Someday. Before we leave Arizona in April!

That's all there is for today.

Friday, October 3, 2008

10/03/08 First Week Down!

I'm not a screaming ninny! I haven't pulled out all my hair! I can still speak in coherent sentences! I made it through the first week first three days as the Activities Coordinator.

The best news I got today was that one of the team members, Jim, does desktop publishing and he will take care of the newsletter we put out every month. This is a HUGE load off my mind as our newsletter runs quite a few pages with everything happening in the resort being listed plus write-ups on what happened the previous month.

Today we got all the Halloween decorations out of the storage shed. I didn't get to see but a few of them so I don't know yet what we have. I hope they are in better shape than the Luau decorations were from last year.

By ten-thirty everything that could be done by the team, I sent them home. Ahhh, I remember those days!

I spent the majority of the afternoon on the phone scheduling day trips, shows and a fashion show.

Bob spent his day doing tons of stuff around the house. Our awning is looking brand new again, the rest of the rig has been washed, he started organizing the basement (again) and he cleaned up inside too. What a guy!

After our my favorite meal of salad, steak, baked potato and brussel sprouts we settled in for a night of TV.

Its still very hot here. Today we hit 98 degrees but a cold front is coming! I wish it would get here!

My knees are killing me! I don't know why but the same thing happened last year. The day we arrived they started giving me a lot pain when I had to walk up or down stairs. Same thing this year. If I recall correctly this lasted several weeks. Anybody have any ideas as to why?

That's about it for today, phone calls for me and cleaning for Bob.

10/2/08 Day Two, It's Still GOOD

We had a third workamper work with us today as Steve was done with his doctor's appointments and is raring to go.

Today the kitchen was cleaned, an inventory taken, salt and pepper shakers filled, lights put up around the picnic table area, puzzles/games cleaned out and the library worked on. And at noon they all went home.

I managed to get the posters/flyers made for all the events coming up for the month of October and even a few for November.

It was another hot one here today but cooler weather is coming. I hear the high will only be 90 for the next few days. A welcome relief to be sure.

Dinner is still being made outside because of the heat. In fact, Bob put panels in our windows to block out the sun and keep the inside cooler. It works! The A/C doesn't seem to be working nearly as much as it was yesterday.

Did you click on the pink icon in the sidebar yet? If not, do it now please. This is important.

That's about it for today. We didn't do anything exciting, watched the Vice Presidential debate and then Survivor.

Here's a chuckle for you.

A man riding his Harley was along a California beach when suddenly thesky clouded above his head and, in a booming voice, the Lord said, 'Because you have tried to be faithful to me in all ways, I will grant you one wish.

'The biker pulled over and said, 'Build a bridge to Hawaii so I can ride overanytime I want.' The Lord said, 'Your request is materialistic, think of the enormous challenges for that kind of undertaking; the supports required reaching the bottom of the Pacific and the concrete and steel it would take! It will nearly exhaust several natural resources. I can do it, but it is hard for me to justify your desire for worldly things. Take a little more time and think of something that could possibly help mankind.

'The biker thought about it for a long time. Finally, he said, 'Lord, I wish that I and all men could understand women; I want to know how she feels inside, what she's thinking when she gives me the silent treatment, why she cries, what she means when she says nothing's wrong, why she snaps and complains when I try to help, and how I can make a Woman truly happy. 'The Lord replied, 'You want two lanes or four on that bridge?'

Have a good day!

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

10/1/08 The First Day Went Well!

I was up before the alarm clock went off this morning in anticipation of what the day was going to bring. The day went surprisingly well.

Not all the workampers are here yet. They'll be trickling in over the next few days.

I opened up the Activities Center at precisely 8:56 this morning and at 8:57 the workampers here started strolling in. We have four couples here right now and two reported for work. Steve and April ( don't hold me to these names!) scheduled dentists appointments but Steve did come in for a short while before they had to leave. That speaks VOLUMES to me. Jim and Mary, from Michigan, were there today as were George and Carol and I don't know where they are from. The fourth couple just arrived yesterday afternoon and need some time to get set up so they'll start in a few days.

The tasks to be completed today were to get the Activities Building up and running. Everything needed to be dusted after this summer and the library was given a whole lot more books that had to be tagged and shelved. Mary is a former librarian and it really bothers her that the books aren't in perfect order. I told her to wait a few weeks and mystery will be mixed in with romance..... I thought she was going to faint on me. Note to self: Keep Mary away from library for her own good.

Mary and her books.


Carol getting the craft room spic and span.


Everyone just pitched in and got the job done. I am so proud of them! Not one complaint about anything. By noon we were done and I sent them home to enjoy the afternoon.

I stayed two hours longer going through files from years past to glean any useful information from them that I could. I am so thankful that Bruce and DeAnn kept such detailed records!

I made my first executive decision today and it was that the first pancake breakfast scheduled for October will be canceled. There just aren't going to be enough people here for the trouble we go through for it.

If the rest of the people are anything like the ones I worked with today, it will be another banner year for the Activities Department. Y E S ! ! !

Back at home Bob washed one side of the rig. The shady side of course. If he washed the sunny side the soap would dry on it before he could blink! It looks like the sunny side will have to be done very early in the morning before the heat sets in.

I took a look at the stats for blog readers for the month of September. There were 1,891 individual visits and 3,148 pages viewed. Every hour around the clock there was someone reading. Besides the USA, visitors came from seventeen other countries including Iran, Korea and Ecuador. The most pages were viewed from.... drum roll please ..... Reston, Virginia with 624 pages read! The other cities with more than 150 pages viewed are as follows:

  • Idaho Falls, Idaho with 251 pages viewed
  • Los Angeles, California with 173 pages viewed
  • Bedminster, New Jersey comes in close with 172 pages viewed
  • Livingston, New Jersey and Philadelphia, Pennsylvania were tied with 158 pages viewed each.

Reston, Virginia. Never been there, don't know anybody there, don't even know where it is in the state of Virginia but we sure have some faithful readers there!

Now listen up everybody, this next part is very, very important. Do you know that one out of eight women will be struck by breast cancer? ONE OUT OF EIGHT!!!! Because this has affected some women who are very close to me I've decided to do what I can to help. I've added something to the sidebar, just under the maps, that I want you to make use of everyday. Click on the PINK ICON everyday! It takes mere seconds and YOU WILL MAKE A DIFFERENCE! Now go click that pink icon right now. Go on...

Since it is so hot here we set the toaster oven up outside to cook our dinner tonight. It kept the inside much cooler this way. While I was outside checking on the progress of the baking pork loin a workamping couple, he's in maintenance, stopped to chat. The woman, Pam, said that she wanted to work Activties but her other half wanted maintenance. She told me that she would be glad to volunteer for the Activities Department anytime she was needed. This could very well be another good year!