Wednesday, November 24, 2021

Thanksgiving Preps

This has been a busy week.  Hence the late post.  I can't even tell you what I have been busy with specifically as I sit here.  Just mundane life stuff mostly.  

Today we are rushing around trying to get all the preps done for the feast tomorrow.  Most everyone will be here this year.  No one taking a t-giving vacation elsewhere this time.  Glad for that.  We missed them last year and evidently my daughter-in-law No. 1 is every glad too.  She approached me at church Sunday telling me how excited she was to be coming this year.  She got very emotional about it.  It touched me deeply.  She also lost her Grandmother that week last year so that added to her emotions.  

Most all of the cooking will be done today.  No overly dark smoked turkey this year.  It's Baby Back Ribs.  I will be smoking them all day today.  The process is about 9 hours for me.  Using a rub I have never tried before.  That may be a mistake.  It's one Son#1 gave me and he loves it.  I wasn't going to use it but when I looked for mine, it wasn't the right one.  Ugh.  So the fire is going and the ribs are on the pit.

We will be going pretty much full out for the next 36-48 hours getting it all done.  Even with most of the cooking done we will still be busy tomorrow.  Friday will be much slower and time to cool our jets.  Thankfully the Longhorn's season will mercifully end then too.  Yes, I will watch even though I know I am setting myself up for more disappointment.  As long as I stay away from the crazies on the fan pages I should do OK.  

I sincerely hope y'all all have a great Thanksgiving this year.  Try to forget all the things that make you tight in the jaws.  It isn't worth it to worry about the things you have no control over.  Just turn it over to the Lord.  

Happy Trails

Tuesday, November 16, 2021

Errand and Inflation

Monday was a day for errands.  Groceries (ugh), Home Depot, get the vehicle washed etc.  The Exploder was in bad need of a wash after the trip to the coast.  Not as bad as previous times, but I don't like to let that sand and salt sit on and in it too long.  Waxed it Tuesday.  Home Depot to pick up a few things to finish up painting the patio.

The grocery trip was mainly to start picking up things for Thanksgiving.  This year turkey is out.  My preference would be enchiladas but no one (in our family) makes them very well.  (I am going to be working on that in the near future).  This year it's Baby Back Ribs.  They have all been bugging me to make them.  They and a few others tell me they are the best they have ever had.  I don't know.  Since they are not my favorite it is hard for me to judge.  I am not a big pork eater and get my fill pretty quick.  They are fall off the bone tender though.  Seriously, you can grab a rack by one bone and it pulls right out-without any meat on said bone.    I like ribs that way.  No nibbling on the bone and getting it stuck in your teeth.  No I don't baste with sauce, ever.  Just a rub.  This IS Texas BTW.  I never have seconds on ribs and will eat them as left overs once and I have had enough.  I guess that's why I don't smoke 'em very often.  'K' loves having them for leftovers.

As for the rest of the grocery shopping we were doing our regular outing which includes stocking up a little.  I knew this was going to be expensive.  With the extra meat it was bound to be.  Five racks of ribs (double the price per pound as in the past).  The basket was getting pretty full but there was a lot of room for more.  We were guessing with each other about how much it was going to be.  After we checked out I asked 'K' how much and she said 'you don't want to know.'  So  I guessed and was over by 50$, guessed again and was under by 25$.  But we hit a new record sadly.  I realized about then that we had spent as much for this one time as we had spent for a whole month a couple years ago.  I just had to shake my head.  

Oh and at Home Depot I was behind a guy buying a small amount of lumber and he was grimacing and shaking his head and said something about how expensive it had gotten.  I told him: 'you can thank Joe Biden.'  He responded about like you would guess with an F Joe Biden.  I just said 'let's go Brandon.'  

Happy Trails

Saturday, November 13, 2021

Day Trip

Friday as we were doing the morning thing 'K' said "Let's go to the coast."  That was not on my radar at all.  I had planned on finishing up the painting of the trim on the patio.  I had also discovered I needed a second coat on the ceiling.  As I muddled around I checked the weather for Padre Island near Bob Hall Pier.  In the 70's very light winds and mostly sunny.  Perfect.  So we rushed around gathering a few things, snacks, chairs, ice chest, dog, dog crate.  

The beach was very clean and very smooth.  As good as I have ever seen it and the water was clear for a change.

Snickers kept his distance from the scary water

 A Grackle at the beach.  Never have I seen one there before.  He was pretty bold trying to mooch snacks.

Keeping us safe from the dangerous beach birds

This guy had a one wheel electric skate board-pretty cool

I takes us just under 4 hours to get from home to a spot on the beach.  We just walk up and down the beach and sit and enjoy the beauty of God's creation for a couple hours and then head home.  Can't get much more relaxing than that.  But then I had to navigate through the rush hour traffic once back in S.A.  The entire width, about 35 miles.  It was a mess.  There went the relaxation lol.  Oh, and I didn't get stuck this time.

Happy Trails

Tuesday, November 9, 2021

Cooking/Baking Today

We got the patio painted yesterday.  All except the trim.  It took much longer than I thought it would.  And I paid the price for it.  Much ibuprofen and acetaminophen was needed after.  I'm OK today but still feeling the after effects in my neck and shoulders.  Having almost no discs there is not fun.  The trim may get started on Wednesday.  By started I mean just that.  Painting trim usually takes me longer to do than walls/ceilings.  Plus I am not sure I have enough paint.  I will use up what I have before I go buy more.  

While on my uneventful morning walk we were nearing home when I smelled this very musky pungent stench.  I knew immediately what it was and had to stop to see where he was.  A really big buck (sorry no pics) was laying down back from the road and there was a doe laying near him about 30' from me.  He wasn't letting her out of his sight.  The bucks have been in full force rut for a couple weeks now.  I have seen a lot more big bucks this year than previous years and all of them are in really good shape.  Nice racks, most all with very tall tines.  Beautiful.  I don't take many photos of them anymore, I have done that a lot in the past.  I try to keep an eye out for them to keep from seeming to be a threat to them.  Now I just enjoy the show.

Today I need to make some bread.  We have been out a few days.  I will also make a pot of my Carne Guisada and a pot of Mexican Rice.  This will take up a few hours.  I have to pay attention when cooking that many things at the same time.  I can miss a step or ingredients as I have in the past.  I don't need to have my attention diverted by trying to paint too.  I can see something bad happening then.

My Longhorns are a mess.  They are really playing some bad football right now.  I expected some with a new coach and new QB's and all new coaching staff.  But I have faith that this new staff will get over the hump, if not next year the following.  I follow a couple groups that are fans and the comments they make about the team are frustrating.  They all seem to know what needs to be done and a lot even what the new coach fired or should never have fired the previous coach(there were multiple reasons he should have been fired-not all just winning).  Fans are fickle. Longhorn fans seem to be the worst.  Of course I understand winning cures a lot of ills.  But for a true winning program to get started more patience is needed.  I see cracks, but most of those issues are player execution.  Oh well I could go on with my opinions but watching them now isn't much fun and hasn't been for over a decade.  That hurts a life long fan.

Happy Trails

Tuesday, November 2, 2021

Fantastic Weather

I didn't post anything Monday.  It seems to be a thing here lately.  I wanted to get started/finished on the prep work for the painting on the patio.  There was some caulking and patching that was much needed.  I managed to finish that up and if all goes as I hope I should actually start painting Tuesday morning.  I know I won't finish.  Wednesday some wet weather is supposed to roll in and the temps will take a significant dive Thursday morning.  Or so the wife tells me.  Won't be any painting after Tuesday if she is right.  

I would like to get that part of my multi year painting project done before too much longer.  Once that is done I hope to have some work done on the concrete portion of the patio.  Over the years of use there a number of stains, paint and other things by various individuals that will remain nameless.  I hate the way it looks.  We don't use the patio a lot but my hope is to get it looking really nice and hopefully it will entice use to a greater degree.  At the least to get the ugly stains covered.  It's a little on the spendy side from what I can gather.  But it needs something other than what we have now.  

The weather here has been beyond superb.  Little to no clouds, cool to crisp mornings, sunny afternoons rarely getting to 80.  This it the weather that makes me love this time of year.  It is also loved by the Whitetail bucks that are making their desires known to the does.  I see a lot of deer throughout the year.  But this brings out the big boys that find places to hide the rest of the year.  I think a lot of them come across from Camp Bullis since there are few to no people there with little hunting pressure.  I am just not sure how they get over that fence.  It is at least 8' chain link with another 2' of barbed wire on top.  Maybe they come from somewhere else but they are really looking for love right now.  When I am walking the dog early morning, I take my time passing those dudes that are full of hormone induced crazy.  They are unpredictable.  One man in our neighborhood was gored by one a couple years ago, unprovoked so he says.  I don't doubt it with everything I have learned over the years seeing them up close almost everyday.  I do know I don't want one of those beasts trying to stick me with those massive antlers.  Not fun.  BTW, have you ever smelled one of those bad boys in full rut?  Whew/

Happy Trails

Tuesday, October 26, 2021

Catching Up

We had a very busy week last week.  So busy we turned down an invitation for Saturday evening.  Part of that time we had all 3 Grandkids overnight.  From a two and a half year old to a newly minted teen girl.  It wore us out.  We seem to do better with the youngest than we do the older ones.  When they don't talk it's hard to figure out what to do.  Tiring.

The weather was so great last week I went a bought some more outdoor paint so I would be ready to tackle the patio.  The very next day and every day since it has been extremely humid with threats of rain.  It never rained but with the humidity so high I held off.  It takes much too long for paint to dry then.  Sometimes it doesn't cure right and no telling what might fall on it from the trees and get stuck.  But I am ready with the paint now.  Two gallons of extremely expensive paint.  It is considerably more than when I bought it last year.  Thanks Joe.

This week we don't really have any plans.  We did some Costco shopping.  We had read that many Costco\s were being shopped hard and were out of things we like to stock up on.  They had toilet paper but not a lot.  We just missed out on paper towels.  Everything else looked normal.  They are doing some remodeling again.  Moving the optical and hearing aid center.  I was going to get my hearing aids maintained as I have been experiencing some issues.  They were closed down so that will have to wait much to 'K's displeasure.

I have been working on getting all my photos on my PC cleaned up since my online backup is full.  I have about 5000 photos and I got all of them moved to a USB flash drive after I weeded a bunch out (around 2000).  Oh, I have at least that many other photos on a portable hard drive that need attending to also.  But as you can imagine it is a daunting task.  I purged my PC and my one of my online accounts.  They all need better organizing.  That may never happen.  

Currently I am trying to find old photos of my parents, grand parents, great grandparents and the wife's, non digital.  We want to make a wall display, a sort of family tree.  I will scan them and touch up those that need it and print copies.  They will get framed and then need to be arranged on the wall.  'K' will handle the arranging.  Surprisingly, I haven't found as many as I thought I would.  I have plenty of my Dad's parents, a few of my Mom's, minimal amount of the previous generation(but the ones I have are great).  We have almost nothing of 'K's' grandparents unfortunately.  So it will be heavy with my blood relatives and not many of from 'K's' family.  We may expand to uncles and aunts, we just have to see how this plays out in numbers and arrangement.  And, again I have many more photos of mine than 'K.'  

We both have been really wanting to head down to Padre Island on a day trip but things and the weather there have not cooperated.  It seems the weather may be an issue for a while too.  We try to go in October as it's not hot and there is less chance of getting burned to a crisp by the sun.  However weather is pretty sketchy.  You just never know this time of year.  Maybe we can try one in November and see how that is.

 Happy Trails

Tuesday, October 19, 2021

Bluegrass Festival

Here are a few photos and a couple videos of our trip to Famers Branch and the Bloomin' Bluegrass Festival.

The Line Up

Yours Truly and friends-look at that weather.  I got a little sun burned even with my hat on.

Del McCoury

Dan Tyminski

Ricky Skaggs

Sister Sadie-These gals were great

My Del video was to large to upload.  All throughout the festival we would see several artists playing with other bands.  It seems to be common place.  

And by the way, don't buy breakfast tacos in Farmers Branch.  5 star rating on Yelp and they were virtually inedible.  Sausage and egg tacos use something like vienna sausage, they don't have potatoes and use mozzarella cheese.  This was a little hole in the wall operation that usually have the best food in San Antonio.  I knew I was taking my chances outside of the Breakfast Taco Capital of Texas (despite what Austin thinks they are), but dang, how can you mess that up so bad?  

Happy Trails