Friday, June 29, 2012

The Two Lindas and Chipmunk Training

The Two Lindas took a week's vacation from their job at Texas Advertising (they sell advertising for and create the maps for commercial campgrounds) and drove down from Breckenridge to spend five days with us at Park Creek Campground.

Jim continues to feed/train the chipmunks daily. At 4:00 p.m. the chipmunks are outside looking for Jim and their daily ration of raw peanuts.  If he isn't outside then they squeak and make sounds till he goes outside.  So now instead of having Buddy II, Jim calls him Squeaky.


Squeaky even went to Linda S. begging for some peanuts.  She's telling him "go to Jim over there".

Jim is really enjoying cooking on the "disk" and here he fixed us breakfast burritos using the disk.

Jim took the side windows down and rolled up the roof on the Jeep and we drove The Lindas to Creede for a visit.  We all wanted to get some more flavored balsamic vinegar at the Creede Olive Oil Company.  You can read about the trip on The Lindas blog here.

The next day Lindas X Two went to the Great Sand Dunes outside of Alamosa and also Zapata Falls.  They took some wonderful photos that you can see here.

We've enjoyed several meals together....Jim has been on his own to come up with something to eat as The Lindas X Two are basically vegetarian.  This was supper one night...fresh mozzarella cheese, tomatoes from a farmer's market the girls brought with them, deviled eggs and shaved balsamic infused Parmesan cheese with Sabra hummus and multi-grain crackers.  I think Jim made himself a PBJ after eating the deviled eggs...a fav of his.
Oops, time to go, so more tomorrow on what all we did during The Lindas X Two visit.

Remember, you are loved.

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Computer Kaput

So I closed down my computer on night and the next morning it wouldn't open.  All I got was a light gray screen which turned into a dark gray screen and there it stayed...nothing...not even the blue screen of death.


Lory said she thought it was the processor gone bad.  So back it goes again to HP for a new one or repaired one.  Dang!!!!!  Luckily we still have this Acer that we can use.  But then the internet service hasn't been very good the last few days so I am once again at the Wolf Creek Ranch using their wifi.  I'll try to put together a few blog posts with current happenings....like The Two Lindas visiting...latest antics of Buddy the Chipmunk...Jim's tolerance of my vegan lifestyle (I've lost 9 pounds so far).  It takes me longer now because I lost Windows Live Writer on this older computer so have to compose in blogger per se and you know how time consuming inserting photos take that way.


Be patient we are fine; worried about wildfires as it is so dry; eating lots of veggies and fruits (no more Metamucil needed) and preparing for 4th of July campers craze.


Remember, you are loved.

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Recent Happenings

Earlier this week we had to say goodbye to our friends The Wolf’s.  They weren’t able to finish out their two weeks stay because their Class C starting leaking transmission fluid. 

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So we said goodbye, hoping they will be able to return again this summer. We sure had fun with them swapping our extra food and eating together.

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Lots of activities Friday and Saturday around here.  Friday afternoon my former boss and his wife, Heinz and Angela, came up from Alamosa for a visit. 

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Afternoon turned to “happy hour” and then we got hungry.  We scrounged around and came up with six avocadoes for guacamole, six brats, a can of Bush’s baked beans and some  black olives.  I had 5 half-full packages of assorted chips and crackers to use on the guacamole and Heinz and Jim jumped over to Wolf Creek Ranch for a package of buns, so we were all set.

Heinz and Angela are on a five-year plan to become fulltime RVers.  Heinz bought a one-ton truck in preparation of the event and is actively surfing the net for a fifth-wheel.  So we like to get together periodically during the summer and “talk RVing”.  This is the way Jim and I learned about fulltiming, by talking every weekend the summer of 2006 with Nikki and Mike Brundin, when they were camphosting Upper Beaver Campground, one that we manage now.

After dinner we built a fire and had a great time together.  This is probably be one of our last camp fires because on Tuesday there will be a complete ban on all fires because of the extreme dryness and lack of rain.  Hopefully the July monsoons will alleviate the situation and we will be able to sell fire wood again.  Around 8:30 p.m. we bid Heinz and Angela goodnight and called it a night.

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While visiting with Heinz and Angela we had two bicyclists come in to camp overnight.  Once or twice a summer we get long distance bicyclists stay here at Park Creek Campground and I’m always intrigued by their stamina and like to stop and talk with them.

Two buddies Ed and Ed who call themselves “Dos Ediots” A Bike Edventure on facebook (get it two idiots both named Ed?).

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I really became interested when I saw that they paid for their night’s stay using a Senior Pass, which means one of them is at least 62 years old.  So Saturday morning I went over to give them a couple of Laurie Brown’s Banana Oat Breakfast Cookies (like a healthy energy bar with banana, oats, flaxseed meal, raisins, walnuts, etc.) as they were going to cycling over Wolf Creek Pass.

Their story is that last year they took off from Raleigh, NC and cycled as far as Kansas and the heat made them stop the trip and they flew home to California.  So this year they flew back to Kansas and pick up the trail once more and continue on to California.  And, yes, they are both seniors, one Ed is almost 63 and the other 64.  Better men than I am…I couldn’t image cycling from coast to coast anytime!!!  More power to you, Ed and Ed; God speed and may the wind push you all the way.
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Today, Saturday, Jim finally decided we should buy a canopy for over the picnic table…..yippe!!!! 

 

 

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It is so hot with the sun beating down on us when we have all the camphosts over for potlucks every two weeks. Tomorrow it will be so different and much more enjoyable.  Isn’t it pretty?  I sat under the canopy and did my weekly paperwork in comfort.  The canopy will come in handy when we gate guard in Texas this winter.
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Jim also put up our exterior window shades so it is much cooler inside the rig. We’ve been having extremely hot weather for us this last week.  Yesterday it got to 90* and that is very unusual for us up here in the mountains.  Usually our max temp is mid-80s during the day with nights in the 30-40s…..makes for great sleeping weather. 

We’ve also been very slow business-wise.  The smoke from the Pagosa Springs fire is spooking everyone as they drive through Alamosa and see the mountains obscured with the haze of smoke.  The fire isn’t a threat to us and is some 45 miles northwest of us, but folks see the smoke and go somewhere else.

So we’ll do what we can and try to give extra attention to our campers in the hopes those that are here will stay longer than they intended. 

That happened last week when we had a family stop by for one night on their way from Michigan to the Grand Canyon. 
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Terry and Connie asked what they could see around here and on the next leg of their trip.  I told them about a couple of interesting trails nearby that they could hike that afternoon; spoke of Creede and the Kids’ Fishing Derby taking place in two days (their daughter loves to fish).  So instead of staying one night they ended up staying three nights, took the hikes and visited Creede and The Abeyta’s lent their daughter a fishing pole so she could participate in the fishing derby, which she really enjoyed.  When they left last Sunday they were going to stop and spend a couple of nights at Mesa Verde National Park on our suggestion.  Lots of times it just takes spending a little extra time with campers and suggesting places to visit and they extend their stay with us.

Well, that is what we have been doing this last few days.  Hope you are staying cool and enjoying the lazy days of summer.

Remember, you are loved.

 

Friday, June 22, 2012

Rita’s Birthday Dinner

Last Friday we drove to Creede with Rita and Jerry Scarbrough to celebrate Rita’s birthday.  She chose to go back to Kip’s and have the sirloin tacos again.  Jim had a good looking smothered chili burger and I had a nice salad.

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This time we got to sit upstairs in Kip’s new open air patio on the second floor.  The view is very nice from up there. 

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The bar area up there is pretty neat….very different, at least. The left side is all open and the right side is glassed in.

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I love the funky d├ęcor.

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We enjoyed our dinner and the company was fabulous!!!

Remember, you are loved.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Abeyta’s Came to Camp

Since the Abeyta’s have rented a storage unit here in South Fork for all their gear and their trailer, they just have to drive up from Espanola.

Teddy loves to cook in his dutch ovens, especially cobbler.  He fed us all weekend.  We had ribs, fajitas and a burger and potato hash.

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He sets up a canopy and this becomes his cook shack.  He has a two burner stove stand and a couple of tables that hold his dutch ovens.  We introduced them to The Wolf Family, another camper who was staying nearby for a week.  So we all got together one night for a rib dinner.

Here Teddy is instructing Landi how to make a cobbler in a dutch oven.

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After 30 minutes the cobbler was ready.

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We finished the night with a great camp fire.

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Visiting with our campers is the best part of our job.

Remember, you are loved.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Mountain Sheep

Way back in early May when Jim and NanC Tidball were visiting, we took a trip to Creede.  On the way we came across a small herd of mountain sheep in the Wagon Wheel Gap/Cottonwood Cove area.  First time we have seen mountain sheep in this area of the valley.

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Originally Jim thought they were mountain goats, but forest service rep looked at the photos and said they were female mountain sheep that hadn’t grown the curve in their horns yet.

One of the baby sheep stayed on the other side of the road alone, but pretty soon here came mama from up the hill back down and across the street and pretty much “butted” the baby in the behind to coax him/her across the street and up the hill with the rest of the herd.  Cute to watch and listen to the baby baying his/her protest of being moved.

I just wanted to get the photos up on the blog so I’d have them available for later.

Remember, you are loved.

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Happy Father’s Day Dad

Michael Charles Stone was my dad. 

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He always wanted a boy child.  I was the "last child" for eleven years until my brother was born. So Dad and I did "boy" things together. There was Sundays at Palm Beach Speedway (still love racing), Thursday nights were wrestling matches, Friday nights were boxing matches (we always sat by the entrance from the dressing rooms so I could shake hands with all the wrestlers and boxers).  Several evenings we watched sports on television (black and white back in the 1950s).  I was my dad’s “channel turner”; no remotes in those days.

I was originally suppose to be a boy and my name was going to be Robert (became my cousin’s name two years later), so being a girl I was named and called Barbara early in my life.  Dad, however, called me “Boy” (think there was a little of wishful thinking showing through?).  Later in life when I would call home he yell to my mother “The Boy is on the phone”.

Where my mom was every bit a lady, dad was the rogue, a bad boy type.  Maybe that was their attraction.  I got my crazy, reckless behavior from him.

Dad was always doing the reckless, unusual and un-expectant things. When it got busy and stressful at our family restaurant, Dad would yell out “the kitchen is closed, let the dancing begin”.  He’d then take my mother in his arms and waltz her around and between the tables.  Our customers would smile and clap in pleasure.  Soon, the dancing relieved the stress and Dad would announce, “OK, folks, the kitchen is opened again.  What will you have?”

Dad liked his corn-cob pipe with fragrant smelling cherry flavored tobacco. He also liked his Ballantine Ale.  Oh, yes, it was the only thing that quenched his thirst when he worked up a sweat in front of the hot grill and stoves.

I was very much a daddy’s “boy”….more like his “mini me”.  I adored my dad!!! He talked to me as an equal, always philosophizing about life and preaching his brand of life lessons. He would start off every time with “Always remember, Babinka…………”.  I listened and learned and use them still today at age 70.

Dad was ethical, extremely honest, a jokester, empathetic and extremely giving.  I remember how he’d send me out of the restaurant to invite a hitchhiker to come in for something to eat; or he’d put a ham sandwich in a brown bag and send me out to give it to a hitchhiker. Those invited for supper were allowed to sweep the floor, because Dad said you always need to give a person their dignity and sweeping floor was the hitchhiker’s way of paying for their meal….not taking a handout.

I was raised in southern Florida.  Back in the 1940’s and 50’s Florida was still segregated, but blacks were always welcomed to eat at our restaurant.  Unfortunately Dad didn’t think he could feed blacks inside the restaurant because of the controversy it would cause.  So we had a nice table set up behind the restaurant which was enclosed with a nice hedge and Dad served blacks there complete with a candle sometimes. Another lesson….everyone is equal…treat every person with respect….

Another lesson, anyone older than you is called Mr., Mrs, or Miss no matter what color or nationality. It is a simply a sign of respect.  I forget my age at times and still call folks sir or mame when I first meet them.

That is my dad….thanks for letting me reminisce and telling you about my dad. 

Happy Father’s Day, Daddy.

Remember, you are loved…..all of you!

 

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Vegan Lifestyle

I’m looking at a vegan lifestyle.  I watched Dr. Oz’s show about losing weight with a vegan diet of raw and cooked veggies (like 10 pounds in a week). The guest was Dr. Joel Fuhrman and his book, Eat to Live.

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I also ordered Kathy Freston’s book The Lean, a 30 day weight loss diet in the vegan lifestyle. Her's takes an interesting plan of adding one new thing each day for a month while continuing to do the items from previous days, i.e. Day 1 drink two quarts of water a day, Day 2 drink your water plus each an apple each day, etc.  It seems to “ease” your way into a vegan lifestyle without doing it “cold turkey”.

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I’ve “played around” with being a vegetarian for a year or so now. It all started a year ago when I read The China Study, by Dr. T. Colin Campbell and read his comprehensive study of nutrition in China. Dr. Campbell advocates a vegan diet. 

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With the encouragement and advice of friends, Lory, Norah and NanC, I think I’m ready to commit to it.  It just makes so much sense when you read the information in these books and the negative affects of animal products on your body.

So the other day I went to our local grocery store, Rainbow Groceries, and bought a whole bunch of veggies and fruits.  Dr. Fuhrman recommends four fruits a day, so I’ve been enjoying eating a banana, strawberries and fresh pineapple for breakfast every morning and then an apple for a snack in the afternoon. Dr. Fuhrman also recommends eating a pound of raw veggies and a pound of cooked veggies every day.  So I steamed together a bunch of different veggies into a medley with some Mrs. Dash and had that for dinner.  For lunch I had some homemade Polish potato perogies that I bought at Red Rock Grocery in Blanca, Colorado.  Oh, they were so good.  I haven’t had perogies in such a long time.  They are hard to make…well, time consuming I should say.  Kind of like making tamales.  And like tamales they are usually served at Christmas.

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Jim has been so very supportive of my choice to live a vegan lifestyle.  He is still my “meat and potatoes, peas, corn and bean” guy but he tries everything I cook…at least once.  So far the veggie medley has been a hit with him, but not much else.  I tried to get him to try some almond milk I bought, but the first sip is all he could get down.  Oh, well, tonight he is grilling some St. Louis ribs for dinner with a camper family and I’m have to have a rib or two.  Jim makes killer barbecue ribs and they are hard to resist.   We’ll see.  Maybe I’ll finish reading the books before starting in……am I quibbling already???

Remember, you are loved.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Visit from Headquarters

Sorry for the delay in postings on this blog, but we have been very busy getting the campgrounds in shape for the season.  Plus not all our camphosts arrived at the same time, so I’ve had to do four separate training sessions at two hours a piece.

Yesterday we had a visit from our company’s Director of Finance, Matt Kemp.  He was here to do a “walk through” with the Forest Service to see the campgrounds and prospectus in preparation to “bid” on a permit to operate our campgrounds for the next term…usually seven years.

We’ve met Matt originally in Orem, Utah, last September, when we visited American Land and Leisure’s headquarters.  Then we met again in Quartzsite when we worked in the company’s booth outside of the Big Tent.

Here we are with Big Meadows Reservoir in the background.  Yes, Matt, is a young man, but here is very smart, perceptive and has a very welcoming and engaging personality.  He looks you in the eye and really listens to what you have to say….that is a wonderful trait he has.  We enjoyed his company and his humor.

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(Note:  OK, Cool Judy, I am using Windows Live and changed the shape of the picture and it STILL shows a white band under the photo.  Any other suggestions???)

We had a good time Monday night showing Matt around all our campgrounds and introduced him to all our camphosts.  We don’t get many visits from “corporate” so it was a real treat for our camphosts to meet someone from headquarters.  They all did a heck of a job preparing for his visit and the “walk through” and the campgrounds looked great!

Today we had a laid back day after all the extra work we did to get ready for Matt’s visit.  So Jim went fishing and here I am at the local library using their wifi because it is so much faster than my mifi connected to my little antenna.  So I have spent three hours surfing the net….one of my most favorite things to do.  I could be online six hours a day if I could….just love researching all kinds of things online.

Have lots more to tell you about our activities the last couple of weeks….but that is all for today. 

Remember, you are loved!!!

 

 

Monday, June 4, 2012

Jim Gets a Buddy

 

And this is Buddy

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We have a camper friend, Stubby, who trains a chipmunk every summer to come get peanuts from him.  In fact, the chipmunk will actually dive into the pocket of his shirt to get a peanut…and all you see is this bushy tail sticking out of his pocket….funniest thing to see.

So Jim wanted to try and get a chipmunk to eat peanuts from his lap.  So the other day I bought some raw, unsalted peanuts and Jim started throwing a few around to entice some chipmunk.

 

CIMG0150Sure enough, here comes this double stripped one.  Slowly Jim got him closer and closer and Buddy worked his way up to eating a peanut from Jim’s shoe, then his leg and finally up onto his lap and chest.

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I was taking pictures and up comes Buddy onto my knee looking for something to eat.

 

 

 Even a Blue Jay (which we call Camp Robbers cause they swoop down and take things right off the table) got into the action and came and got a peanut.

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So I suspect we will have daily visits of Buddy looking for his peanuts and Jim “training” him more and more until Jim gets Buddy to go into his shirt pocket for peanuts.
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Anybody know why I have that white stripe under my photographs?  I can’t get rid of it and it is annoying!!!  There’s also a shadow effect on the right side of all the photos.  Any suggestions would be appreciated.

Remember, you are loved!

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Dinner Out–Dinner In

Last Thursday we went OUT to Creede for dinner with Rita and Jerry Scarbrough.  Kips Grill is a “hip” place with  an interesting menu.

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I had a taco plate that had a green chili stuffed with melted cheese, black beans, cabbage, salsa and avocado wrapped in a white corn AND a flour tortilla. Oh, yummy. They serve a Drunken Noodle bowl I want to try next time.

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Then dinner IN was with Friday and Saturday when Roberta and Teddy Abeyta came up from Espanola to see us for the weekend, staying at a motel nearby. 

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They brought their camper up to store at a local storage place and rented a unit to put all their camping gear and Teddy’s wide array of dutch ovens, cook stands, and cooking disks.  That way they can drive up here in the truck and not have to schlep everything with them each time.  They plan on coming up here every other weekend during the summer and camping with us. That will be so nice.

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I really do need to get a tripod so I can be IN some of these photos!

 

 

 

 

Then as I was driving around Saturday I came across a deer munching on the grass in a nearby field….pretty, aren’t they.

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Remember, you are loved.