Monday, April 29, 2019


With all the things going on last week I missed an appointment to have my blood drawn for an upcoming doctor appointment on Wednesday.  They didn't call to remind me like they usually do and I didn't get one of the little business cards with my appointment on it.  They would squeeze me in early Monday morning in order to still get to my appointment.  That meant I had to be there at 8 AM.  8 AM is not a problem other than having to navigate the heavy traffic.  It's a 20 minute trip when not rush hour.  I left an hour early so as not to be late.  I hate being late.  I wasn't late by a long shot, I had to spend some time in the car waiting for them to open.  I was there 40 minutes early, but you can never tell with the traffic in this area.  Tomorrow I might not make it in time with an hour lead time.  

I will have the doctor check my hernia that I had repaired just over a year ago.  I am experiencing the same sort of pain I had before it was repaired.  I don't think that is supposed to happen, and I have been very careful about lifting too heavy a load.  It's just bothersome and I want to see if there may be something else going on.  He will review the blood results and see where we go from here.  I go to the doctor more than I want, but I don't really have a choice if I want to keep a semblance of health.  It's like they say, " if I knew I was going to live so long, I would have taken better care of myself."  Now I'm paying the price.

At some point today, if I can muster the energy I want to get out and try to knock the bugs off the Explorer.  The trip to Abilene was a bug/butterfly killing trip.  It will take some elbow grease but I gotta get that off.  

Happy Trails

Friday, April 26, 2019

Out of Pocket

We have been going and going this past week, hence the no posting.  On Monday we got the news of K's Uncle passing away in Abilene.  He was the last remaining sibling, he was K's mother's brother.  So we made plans to head that way as soon as we found out about arrangements.  There was no way we would miss this, as he was one of the finest men I have ever met.  A life well lived.  A man of God.  It as a fairly quick trip as we only stayed one night.  We were able to catch up with some of that branch of the family.  It had been too long as it usually is.  This was this past Thursday and Friday.  It's a four hour drive.  It was uneventful thankfully and we got to see some great wildflowers.  It's late for Bluebonnets, but now the Firewheels/Indian Blankets, Black Eyed Susans and Indian Paintbrush are taking over.  It was some of the best I have ever seen.  I wish we had had time to stop and take some photos.  

We also took care of Granddaughter #2 all day Wednesday and K spent the night at her house to give the people she lives with a break.  This will pretty much be the routine until K's surgery in June.  Then her Mom will be out of school and have more time and less stress.

I have a ton of yard work waiting for me again.  We have had ample rain and then some spectacular days of sunshine that is making everything grow faster than I want it to.  It makes everything look great but wears me out and I hurt for a couple days.  I will start working on it in phases over a period of days.  Less wear and tear on my old bones.

Happy Trails

Saturday, April 20, 2019

Easter Weekend-Last Minute Plans

Last minute plans have been made for this weekend.  We didn't even think about doing anything until Thursday.  None of the kids contacted us about it so it was sort of out of our focus.  We contacted them that evening to see what their plans were.  They were all ready to do whatever we wanted.  Although we will have to be squeezed in with one of their in-laws plans.  So a brisket I had in the freezer started it's defrost.  This one is a 'prime brisket.  I usually buy the cheaper fatty cuts and have always had great success.  So I am very curious how this cut will be.  I am also trying a new 'rub' I got from Cooper's BBQ in Llano.  I don't usually even change my rubs but this one was interesting since the BBQ we had there was very good.  So I am giving it a try with my method of cooking it.

My Bad, but I forgot my parents.  They usually have plans with my Brother and his family or my cousin that lives nearby.  I called Friday morning and they had no plans so will join us Sunday.  So the last minute plans is turning out to be a family gathering.  These usually take more time to plan, so I hope all goes well.

We are dogsitting Son#2's Border/Aussie mix today while they head to a renaissance festival near Austin.  They get to go play while I slave to entertain them.  What is wrong with this picture?  It's really no big deal but I did try to lay the guilt trip on them to no avail lol.  They know me too well.
Keeping the dog all day will be interesting as we have been dogless for almost a month since the passing of Buster.  This is a very energetic dog and he lives in condo with no yard, so coming here to run freely should be a real treat for him.  I plan on it being a treat for us also.  It's been pretty strange being dogless after 15 years.

Happy Trails

Wednesday, April 17, 2019

Fussy Baby, Storms and Candace Owens.

Today we will have the new Granddaughter all day in order that Son#2 can work undisturbed for a bit.  He works from home.  He also gets up with the baby almost every time at night and all day since his wife needs to get up at 5:30 AM to get ready to go to work.  So we have volunteered to do this as often as they need.  Well, it's K mostly.  She will then take her home and stay the night.  This will give them some relief hopefully.  Apparently the baby is a little fussy these last few weeks.  Them being 'older' first time parents it is a little harder on them than if they were in their 20's.  It also gives me some extra time with her, more than I usually would get.  So we are happy to do it.  Once the first week of June is past, Mom will be home all summer since she is a teacher and will handle it.  The baby will be getting older and hopefully less fussy.  The very next week K goes in for surgery on her heel spur that has her hampered.  She will be off her foot for 6-8 weeks and won't really be able to help with the baby.

We are expecting another round of severe thunderstorms tonight.  We may have hail and high winds.  We just had similar weather last Saturday.  We got hail then, some of the largest I have seen since we have lived here.  There were a few golf ball size the rest were mixed smaller.  It wasn't a lot but enough to possibly cause damage to cars and roofs.  Fortunately I don't think we suffered any damage. not to the cars anyway.  I will have Son#1 check the roof when he comes over.  I really don't want it to hail, I don't mind the rest.

I went for a 6 month maintenance on my back yesterday.  It hurt.  More than any other time.  I had trouble walking and standing up straight for a bit.  Ice and Ibuprofen helped with that and I am back to what I call normal, less pain but tolerable.  That's my goal, to stay as pain free enough to function fairly well.  Whatever it takes to avoid back surgery.

I have been watching Candace Owens on YOUTUBE.  What a treat.  She has no trouble putting her antagonists in their place and calling them out on their lies and mischaracterizations.  It's great to watch.  She makes me smile.  If you haven't seen her in action, you really should go find out more.  

Happy Trails

Monday, April 15, 2019

Shocking Sad News

Yesterday we were told that my Daughter-in-Law's Uncle was murdered.  He was attending church Sunday morning when a person known to him sought him out and shot him. 

I am making no political statement here, it doesn't matter.  There is conflicting information on the type of gun used.  One source said an 'assault style rifle' and another a shotgun.  It also conflicts with the shooter being tackled seemingly immediately, another source said he came back after leaving to shoot him again and the other wounded man was attending to the victim.  His son was the source of that last bit as he was notified and rushed to the church and that is when he saw the gunman coming back.  It doesn't really matter which is accurate.  A good innocent man is now dead and many lives affected forever.

Here is one link in many I found if you care to read a little more:

Gordon Parmenter-Man of God

This most likely will not make the media here in the US.  If you want to find out more there are plenty of articles on google. 

This family is deeply distressed but I know they will be OK as they have great Faith.  One thing that was told to me by my Daughter-in-law that is giving them comfort was something Mr. Parmenter's daughter said:  'Imagine his(Gordon's) surprise when in one moment he was here singing praises to our Lord and in the very next moment he was standing before Him.'   

That is true Faith.

Friday, April 12, 2019

It's Friday!!

The 'Rib' is with Son#2 and a doctor appointment for his new little one.  It's time for the first round of vaccinations.  I'm sure tears will be shed.  So for the moment I am unsupervised.  I do have a regular doctor check up this afternoon to see how my diabetes is doing.  I expect good results.

I haven't done a thing about replacing my broken pistol  I need to save up for a while, but have other things demanding my cash at the moment.  So I will carry the 1911 when I don't have to stand or walk much, I don't want my pants falling down.  I will resort to K's Ruger LCR-L when we are together.  No, I won't leave her unarmed without me around.  She is much too valuable to me for me to be comfortable knowing she has no way to protect herself.

The weather this week has been Chamber of Commerce good.  It has been spectacular in other words.  We did get into the 90's one day but it has gone right back down to more comfortable levels.  With the weather so good I have been contemplating some day trips and road trips.  One that has been in my sights for some time is the San Jacinto Battlefield over SouthEast of Houston.  That one will probably be an overnighter.  I don't want to feel rushed getting through the horrible Houston traffic.  One reason I have never gone is I absolutely detest driving in Houston.  Anytime I have gone, it has been horrible and I have gone many times at different times of day.  But my desire to see this battlefield and the surroundings, i.e. USS Texas is making me lose my good sense.

All in all it has been a very good week.  Have been able to spend some time with the new Granddaughter where I could focus more on her without someone else begging to hold her.  That was pretty good as she is getting to where she can react to you now.  It will only get better.  Yesterday we went and picked her up and took her with us to visit my Parents, her great grandparents.  It was a great trip and Mom and I had a very good conversation.  But I worry about her more and more since my Dad relies on her for everything.  It is wearing on her spirit.  He treats her like his maid, and my Dad just doesn't get it.  Many prayers are being offered on her behalf.  

Just another day on the Front Porch of the Texas Hill Country.

Happy Trails

Tuesday, April 9, 2019

Busy Tuesday

A change in our routine today.  My Grandson asked us to come to his 'belt test' for karate early in the morning like we did the last time.  This one was much more intense and they were working him hard.  He is only 9 years old and small for his age.  But that certainly doesn't slow him down.  I was amazed at his stamina.  He was very very active for one hour.  It was making me tired watching him exert so much energy.  On top of that, everything was more complicated and intense than the previous test.  Each belt gets a little harder and it showed.  You could see him thinking what needed to happen after some of his moves.  I was so very proud of him.  He has no quit and a lot of try in him and seems to have no fear.  Just like his Dad.  

He is just about the nicest kid and you would never expect that he could take you.

K spent the night at Son#2's last night.  She was helping out with the baby since Mom had to return to work today.  That way she could get better sleep so she would be fresher for the return to work.  It seemed to work out well and will probably happen a few more times.

A couple weeks ago I took my pistol to the gun shop/gunsmith to take a look at why the slide was jammed all the way back after and incident at the range.  It wasn't a commonly broken part like they were familiar with on this gun.  Apparently I messed up and am lucky to have my hands or worse intact.  They had quite a bit of trouble with it and spent most of one day trying to get it apart.  The barrel had a bulge in it.  They said it looked like a squib round didn't clear and the next can guess the rest.  My lack of knowledge and experience was most certainly the cause of this.  I have never had a squib round and this was all new to me.  So I escaped unharmed and am highly chagrined over this.  So it is now a nice CZ-82 doorstop.  I actually asked them to dispose of it, maybe they can use if for parts.  Embarrassed to say the least but more experience now.  Now I need to save up to replace it so I have a reliable carry.  The 1911 is just too heavy to carry all the time.  It pulls my pants down.  No one wants to see that.  

I am considering 3 currently.  The M&P Shield Compact 9mm with the ported barrel, The new Ruger 9MM economy model-it is hard to ignore due to the cheap price but is only 7 rounds and doesn't come with an extra mag.  Then there is the Sig P365, very spendy for me, but the large capacity mags make it very desirable.  If you have any comments or suggestions on these or others please let me know in the comments.

Happy Trails

Friday, April 5, 2019

It's FRIDAY!!!

I hope everyone has a great Friday and weekend.  When you are retired Friday's aren't a big deal anymore.  Every day is Friday or Saturday.  Actually we aren't as likely to 'go and do' on a Friday as we would be another day.  This area has exploded with more and more folks and the traffic on Fridays is the worst of any day.  It is bad all day long, not just the rush hour.  But we did go out this morning as I had some lab work done (blood draw) for my 6 month check up.  I have to go fasting so the wife and I went to breakfast after.  The place we like to go is pretty small and we got the only table available.  MMMMM tacos.  

We are awaiting the arrival of Son#2 and family.  They want to have a 'date day' and we are going to baby sit the new Granddaughter.  It will be the first time she has been here without the people she lives with.  I am hoping to interact with her more.  She is a little older and is responding more and there will be no others to have to share her with.  

The Oak pollen and tassels are inundating us.  K's car looks really bad with all the pollen on it.  The tassels cover the ground.  I did a little yard work in the back and used the blower to get the tassels off the patio and walkway.  I got that junk all over me.  I forgot to wear a mask like I usually do when the pollen is so heavy.  Cutting the grass kicks it up even more

K had an issue with her car this week.  We have had great luck with this CRV, no problems whatsoever.  Her check engine light came on.  She was out when it happened and called me a little worried.  She also said it smelled hot.  I would not have normally worried about it until she said it smelled hot.  So I followed her over to the dealer that was very close.  They got a couple trouble codes that indicated what 'might' be wrong.  It was running too lean and the catalytic converter may have issues.  I knew that often the check engine light could indicate and exhaust type problem including all the various sensors related.  Or the gas cap is not fitted on right.  They wanted me to replace that thing to the tune of 1800$  What!!  I decided I would take my chances and just leave it alone since it was driving and running fine.  I did have them replace an axle seal that was leaking and align the wheels since I could see some wear on the tires.  We got it home with no issues.  I did some research and the check engine light has about 3 ways it displays and they each mean something different.  Steady burning-get it checked soon.  Flashing-stop, turn off engine and tow it to the dealer to prevent engine damage.  Intermittent slow flash, I don't remember this one.  They say the steady burn (which is what we had) usually indicates a computer issue or sensor and needs to be reset.  Resetting it was as simple as finding the appropriate fuse and removing it for a few minutes.  It worked.  No more light and we have driven it around with no change.  Maybe I got lucky and will save some $$ this time.  

Happy Trails

Monday, April 1, 2019

Garden, Leather, and Ouch

I finally got some tomato plants in the ground late last week and now we have another very windy cold front come through.  I am already late planting by at least 2 weeks.  This cold weather will slow the progress.  It is supposed to be in the 30's by Tuesday morning.  It's been a very strange winter.  I am gonna get some mulch to put in there and see if that helps with the weed prevention.  I hate pulling weeds.

I finished a wallet a friend wanted made for him and another I donated to our fundraiser auction.  

The fundraiser we volunteered at went exceedingly well Saturday night.  The goal was to raise 50K.  More than double that total was donated at this event, through a silent auction, a live auction, dessert dash, purchase now items and sponsorships and donations.  There were only 156 tickets were sold.  Yet the generosity of a so few speaks for how worthy this cause is.  It was fun to watch the live auction and see a few heavy hitters compete for some very expensive hunting trips.  One in Africa and another in Argentina.  As I mentioned in the previous post, 100% of the funds raised go to help Christian families adopt children so they may be raised in a Christian environment.  It is a very worthy cause,  I was glad we could play a small part in this.  The small items we donated even sold. 

Last Saturday, I took a tumble and landed on the concrete on my ribs.  It happened so fast I couldn't catch myself with my hands.  I have been paying the price all week.  I don't think I broke any ribs but they may be bruised or even cracked.  I have been hitting the ibuprofen 24/7.  Coughing or sneezing was the worst and I seem to have an overabundance of that during that time.  It is finally starting to feel less sore.  It could have been much worse.

Happy Trails