Saturday, December 28, 2013

Family Time, Scanning Time

Copyright 2013, CABS for Reflections From the Fence

Spending time this week with family.  Family who have provided me with a treasure trove of goodies to scan.

I found this photo, this is the plane I soloed in so many moons ago, I have never had a photo of it till now:


And, here is the flight log from that flight, so many moons ago, see the fifth line.  The log is a two page affair, both pages presented here:




It has been a lot of work scanning all these photos, but, oh, so much fun.  Memory lane is pretty crowded right now.

We have one more day here, then we will head west and north for a months stay in one place, near Tampa.

At this point I have no intentions of preparing a list of resolutions, mine rarely change much from year to year, some are listed on the blog, down below the posts in a block titled:  RFTF to Carol, Orders to Try to Live By.  I am still working on ALL those items listed.

And, now, I have all these scanned images to process.  FUN indeed!




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Tuesday, December 24, 2013

"Redux, The Crèche of Salvation Mountain"

Copyright 2013, CABS for Reflections From the Fence




The reason for the season.

Merry Christmas to all.


From Man and Moi.



*This post originally appeared here on Reflections on December 25, 2011.
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Monday, December 23, 2013

Nettle's Island, A Unique and Beautiful Experience

Copyright 2013, CABS for Reflections From the Fence

We were able to spend 4 nights here at Nettle's Island before we head out, further south, for the Christmas week with family.  This is a private, owner-owned park.  The residents LOVE it here, privacy; security (they hire their own); great friendships, some of over 40 years standing.


Man and I wandered over to the Atlantic for lunch and photos, isn't that water a gorgeous color??


Man had on gobs of sunscreen.  Contemplating ??


Of course, there are always a few sea gulls to share the beach with.


There were a couple of fellows surfing.  Sony Too and zoom performed quite well, never fails to amaze me.


Looking south:


I managed a short walk on the beach with the boots for support.  We spent some time just sitting at the ocean-side swimming pool, me with the ever fashionable boot.  The sounds of the waves just behind us was so soothing.


Heading back into the park, there is a causeway from Hutchinson Island South to Nettle's.


Boats, decks built over the canals, palm trees, RV living Florida style.


Holiday decorations, it is the season.


The day ends with a lovely sunset, looking over towards Jensen Beach.


Nettle's Island is certainly a unique camping/rving experience.  We met some wonderful, warm, interesting people here.  Thank you Victor for the opportunity.  It is beautiful beyond words!




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Sunday, December 22, 2013

Blog Caroling, Little Drummer Boy, Sung By John Denver

Copyright 2013, CABS for Reflections From the Fence


Thanks to footnoteMaven's sponsorship and challenge, it is time for the Christmas Carol - Blog Caroling. 

Just call me a child at heart, one of my favorite holiday songs has always been "The Little Drummer Boy", it really tugs at my heart.   In 1968 Rankin/Bass Productions released the animated television version of the story of the song.  I don't remember watching it back in 1968, but, by the 70's I had young children and this was one of the several holiday stories we found ourselves watching just about every single year.  Ya, I almost always teared up, sappy Carol.  I loved the story, I loved the animation, I loved the song.

When I went searching for a version on YouTube, I was delighted to find snippets of the original animated version and the song sung by the late John Denver, another one of my favorites.  WIN!!  And, here it is, I hope you enjoy!  The reason for the season.


May the blessings of the season be with you. 

 

* This video was posted by  YouTube user mistikay.

** This is the 3rd year I have chosen this song to highlight, it is still one of my favorites.  fM and I have agreed, it is a threepeat.
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Saturday, December 21, 2013

THE Trip, THE Encore':: Shelter Cove, Flora, Fauna, Water and Rubber? Rubber is Fauna, Right?

Copyright 2013, CABS for Reflections From the Fence

Remember when we were on THE Trip, THE Encore' ??  This was wayyyyy back on May 17, 2013.  GULP!  I am now 7 months behind in posting the trip story.  Life and issues slowed me down, let's give it another go - -

I left off with this post, if you need to review.  (Sigh)

After our delightful picnic lunch, we continued our drive around Shelter Cove, Sony Too clicking away, here are some of the Fauna, Flora, the Water and - - well, you'll see at the end!

Needless to say, Sony Too and I were maxing out the zoom factor. I use no tripod, so, these photos were hand held.


These three are taking relaxation to new heights.  Yep, photo off center, it's that hand held thing at long distances, it's difficult!


Clams??  Lunch to come, or the garbage from meals past?


Taking a swim.


You know I love fences.  Fences with gorgeous wild flowers, even better.


More wild flowers, more ocean, more mountains/hills, more peace.


Fence, and some sea oats with the flowers.


I have no idea what this is, it is only a few inches tall.  It is so delicate, living out in such a rough environment, the ying and yang of Mother Nature.  I do so love yellow pretty flowers and flowering bushes, but, I have to tell you, they are a bit hard to photograph with my current skill set.


Back in the water, Sony Too and I spy, someone diving.  Have no idea what for - -


Waves, splashing.  Rock, a rough beautiful coast.  Fills my heart with wonder, amazement and somehow with all this wildness, peace.


These were found on the road out, at a higher elevation, sheltered somewhat by the hills, and other foliage, there are varieties that are all yellow and then, some with this red/yellow.  I thought they were a variety of a sweet pea or monkey flower, but I am having trouble identifying it right now.  I thought I had found and saved the identification, and you know, this ole leaky memory, cannot find said information.  They were not a low lying plant, many were 4 to 6 foot tall. So, if you know what this is, please let me know.


And, while, many will argue that this next photo is NOT flora, it is "rubber" burned.  Rubber used to come from a plant, right??   This is the mountain road going in and out of Shelter Cove, it is narrow, it is curvy, at times it is a bit steep, ok, steep.  And, yep, this is the remnants of someone doing donuts/spinouts, probably in the middle of the night.  I have to wonder how much adult beverages had to be involved in this?  Personally, I find it a bit disturbing, and, I'll say it, silly - stupid.


The day is not over, noooo, not even.  Next we shall see some Redwoods.  Magnificent trees.




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Friday, December 20, 2013

Happy Holidays, 2013

Copyright 2013, CABS for Reflections From the Fence

Man and I find ourselves in southern Florida for the holidays.

It has been memorable year. Some of which I have been able to share with you at Reflections. Some of which will be shared in much of 2014 at the rate I am blogging lately.

We started out the year in Tucson, and visited Quartzsite, Buckeye, Death Valley, Bakersfield California, Morro Bay and up the coast to Oregon, including an interesting stop at San Francisco, over to Portland Oregon, Mount Rainer, Seattle, over to Glacier National Park and eventually back to SE Michigan. We visited many National Parks, all beautiful. We loved the California and Oregon coasts. We visited the headwaters of the Mississippi River and paid a quick visit to a Michigan favorite, Mackinaw Island. We visited friends along the way, so many welcoming friends. We attended at least two Montana Rallies, one in Jackson California (where we made a day trip to Reno) and one in Goshen Indiana. We ended the year with a mad dash out of Michigan outrunning a snarky ice storm and ending up here, in Florida.

WOW, hard to believe that all in retrospect.

We are thankful and extremely appreciative of the many blessings. We attempt to fully live each day, knowing that nothing of a future is promised. Man had two skin cancer surgeries this fall and I gracefully (NOT) took two stairs as if they were one resulting in a quick trip to the ER and a pulled ligament. We are both healing fine.

For our friends and family we have offered many prayers and hugs. We are always sorry to see illness and other issues they are facing.

That is the year in review, the quick review version.

Man and I send our best to you and yours for a wonderful 2014. Health and happiness, satisfaction with who you are and where you are. Peace of soul and warmth of love.




Happy Holidays!


Man and 

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Thursday, December 19, 2013

"Redux: A Different Kind of Holiday Story, Having to do With Peppermints, a Horny Mouse, and a VERY Tiny Reindeer

Copyright 2013, CABS for Reflections From the Fence

This post first appeared on Reflections 2 years ago.

The following story is "R" rated.   R for a bit "racy".   Just sayin  - -

Man and I have been RVing since 1972.  Well, we started "camping", you know, tenting.  We worked our way up through the ranks, popup camper, hard sided travel trailers and now, we "RV" in our beloved Tana.

We have been wintering away from the chill and snow of SE Michigan basically since he retired in 2001.  Had to stay home a couple of years for medical reasons, but, other than those 2 years we have been escaping.  The first year we did not escape winter, we escaped Michigan March.  I have to say, Michigan is a pretty state, even WITH snow, but, March is the ugliest, nastiest 1/12th of the year in Michigan, bar none.  It is cold, really wet, ugly gray, I don't think the sun EVER shines in Michigan in March.  Well, almost never. (Hey, that's my story and I'm stickin' to it!)

Over the years Man and I have developed procedures for leaving the stick built long term.  Who to contact, who to hire to do certain work while we are gone, how to winterize the house, what to suspend (saving $$ -  wahhooo).  We have a detailed and a  long list, typed into a word processor, usually edited and tweaked a bit each and every year.  The list has served us well over the years, getting better with age, working, UNLESS, yes, you know there is always an "UNLESS", we don't follow it, faithfully, and fully.

And, if you happen to forget an item for say, ohhhh, 2 years in a row.  Can we say, ooops, and, messy??  Well, for us it was.

One of the to do items is to spread a low nitrogen plant fertilizer, Milorganite, that is produced from human sludge.  Ya, I know, TMI, and it also has a rather strong distinctive and not real pleasant odor.  But there is a little something besides feeding my plants and trees that I have learned along the way about Milorganite, and that is that it discourages mice and deer and other critters from eating my trees and bushes and for some reason, it discourages rodents, like mice and shrews from seeking refuge IN our house.  Really it does.

And, for some unknown reason, other than a temporary (one can hope it was only temporary, can't I??), but major case of the STUPIDS, I forgot to put the Milorganite down for not one, nooo nooo nooo, but TWO years.  First year slipped by and there were no mice in the house and well, that made it pretty easy to forget in year number 2.

My luck however did not extend into year 2.  That, topped off by the other really STUPID thing I did, leaving a huge bag of peppermint candies in the house.  You know, those really large bags you buy at places like Sams and Costco??  Ya, the mega bags, that last more than a year.  I saw no reason to transfer that large bag of candy into Tana.  I mean, it would not spoil over the winter in a house with the temps down to 47 degrees F.  Hard candies, wrapped individually - -

Did you know that mice can unwrap individually wrapped hard candies?  Yep, they can.   Did you know that they can carry those candies for extremely long distances??  Yep, they can.  Did you know they can carry those candies for extremely long distances up the inside of your walls??  Yep, they can.


Cut to April when we return to the stick built.  It did not take long to determine we had a issue, with mice, with peppermint candies and wrappers strewn everywhere in our home.  Partially eaten pieces of candy and wrappers in every closet, lots of drawers, under things, in potted plants, on all 3 levels of the house, basement, main floor and top floor.  I even found those little give away hints (peppermint candies go in, something must come out, eh??) in of all places, the toaster.  Man said, we can clean it.  Oh, that was the wrong thing to say.  I went ballistic.  Over and over and over again.  He actually dumped the little hints out of the toaster, but I took said toaster to the garbage and informed him he was to go purchase a new toaster and I guess he figured I meant it, because he did what I insisted he do, he purchased a new toaster.

As I opened more drawers and closets I discovered more and more of those hints, and lap blankets shredded for nesting purposes.  Yes, partially eaten candies and wrappers were everywhere.  Every new piece of evidence was cause for me to become more and more agitated, the tears started, the ranting started, screaming too.  Every day for weeks I was more and more mean and I was MAD.  Man did not hear one nice thing out of me for quite some time, even after he volunteered to help me clean (or was it that I demanded he help me clean?? )

And, clean we did, it took some time, all day, every day for several weeks.  Cupboards and drawers were totally cleaned out, everything stored in them washed, lots of disinfectant was being used.  We filled a couple of trash cans with all those stinking candy wrappers.  All the time, ole Carol was ranting and raving, and all but foaming at the mouth  (and I am not sure that I did NOT foam at the mouth).  I was no fun, I was nasty, I did not even like living with me.  Gotta say, when I don't want to live with me, that is about as bad as it gets.

Eventually, we ran out of creative places to look, we felt we had done a fairly decent job of the clean up.  I began to relax some, especially after Man caught several of those F*A*T, and most likely, diabetic mice, and they left my home.  I had no idea that a mouse could be that F*A*T!!  Plumb, round, and F*A*T!
But, for months, I found more wrappers, buried deep in some large house plants, one day I was removing dead leaves from inside the pot and yep, out came several candy wrappers.

At some point my angst began to subside and my weird dark sense of humor started to return.  Then, one afternoon in July or August I found more candies.  They were on top of my buffet, the top of which is about 4 foot tall.  I found several wrappers and then some partial pieces of candy.  Then, I found,

The reindeer.  On it's side, obviously, sighhhh, dead.

I know you all are aghast, asking, "in your house Carol??  really??  reindeer??"


Yes, in my house, on my buffet, the reindeer, all of 2.5 inches tall, was part of my Christmas in the City collection, which for several years has been left up, pretty much all year round.  If you look very hard in the photo above, on the far right, close to the top of the snow covered tree, you can JUST barely see the little reindeer, see that white tiny blob between the tree and the German Beer Garden??  Well, you can take my word for it, the reindeer is there.  (I hear you snickering!!)

Obviously a mouse had knocked over that little reindeer while scurrying up the back of the buffet with his treat looking for a peaceful and pleasant dinner setting.  I mean, what mouse would not appreciate the lovely Christmas in the City buildings and the bridge.   That mouse had a really nice dining atmosphere, he even had the Salvation Army playing a little ditty during dinner.


But at that very moment, when I spied my reindeer lying on his side, obviously DOA, my dark sense of humor went in the gutter.  I decided on the spot that the mouse was a horny little mouse, that he took out his affections on my reindeer, making whooppee with my reindeer, sugar induced whooppee, which probably means, lots of energy, mmmm, and that the  mouse killed my reindeer with all that whooppee.  Gasp!  That is why I found my little white reindeer lying on his side DOA!  (Are you tearing up yet??)

And, that my dear readers is how I take peppermint candy, an infestation of mice, my holiday decorations and one poor little 2.5 inch tall DOA reindeer and come up with a holiday story of a different kind.

Yea, I know, ole Carol is one sick lady.




* You know it is coming, the disclaimer:  Milorganite is copyrighted by them.  They did not ask me to mention them, and the only connection I have with the company is that I use the product.  Ditto for Sams and Costco, I spend my $$$ there, I get no special discounts, they did not ask me to mention them.

**The candy photo is courtesy of Gospel Clip Art.  The mouse clip art is courtesy of  Classroomclipart.com

***  I no longer leave candy in any shape or form at the stick-built during the months we are out and about in Tana, I think you know why.  I also no longer forget to put the Milorganite down, HEAVILY!  And, we should have purchased stock in some mouse trap company.  Yea, we bought that many of them, snap ones, sticky ones, we bought em!  It has been several years now since the peppermint/mouse incident and our house sitter has only found 1 shrew, in a trap, in all those years, the Milorganite is working.  See Carol smile!

****  I hope that when we return to the stick built in the spring of 2014 I will be able to say there were no more critters found in traps, Man found several mice (dead) in the basement again this fall.  GULP!  There is NO candy back there tho.  Nope!

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Wednesday, December 18, 2013

"Redux, The Christmas Bow"

Copyright 2013, CABS for Reflections From the Fence

Spreading the Christmas cheer by republishing a few of my favorite holiday posts, this one from last December, taken in Fredericksburg, Texas.






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Tuesday, December 17, 2013

The Villages, Florida, At Christmas, Day and Night.

Copyright 2013, CABS for Reflections From the Fence

We are spending a week in the area of The Villages Florida.  We were given a nice tour and had dinner with family the other day.




Good food, great people, enjoyable times, blessed are we.




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Saturday, December 14, 2013

The Villages, Near Ocala

Copyright 2013, CABS for Reflections From the Fence

Will be here for a few more days, the general area has so many large beautiful live oaks with spanish moss hanging.  Did I say the live oaks are large?  Stunning.


The ankle is healing and for the most part is sore, but, not painful.  Had one night I had to rest it and take a mild pain killer.  I suppose it will be months healing.  As long as I can motivate as well as I am, or better, I am not unhappy, considering what might have been.  I have noted that uneven ground is NOT my friend.

Man's surgery is healing well, he feels he is pretty much back to normal, but, still asked that the gimpy one (Moi) unload the drinking water from the grocery cart and out of Jolly into Tana's basement yesterday.  Mission accomplished.

And, the life of these nomads rolls on - - -




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Friday, December 13, 2013

"Time Capsule"

Copyright 2013, CABS for Reflections From the Fence


This blog post  is part of my participation in a weekly writing meme called, "The Book of Me, Written By You"  You too can be part of this experiment/experience, there is more information here, and at this Facebook page.

I may or may not publicly share what I write each week. This week I share.

Week 8 is "Time Capsule"

1.      You can choose who to create the time capsule for as that will influence what you put (or would put into your time capsule)

2.      The creation of a time capsule

     a.       you can do this in the literal sense or

     b.      you can simply write what you would place into your time capsule and why. It is much more fun to create though!

You may choose to create a time capsule for your children, or a niece/nephew, for grandchildren – A physical item that you will give to a named person.

Why have you chosen that person and when do you intend for them to have it?

You may choose to create a time capsule of your home and leave it for someone in the future to find.

You may want to create a time capsule relating to an actual event or anniversary

If you create a physical time capsule, what did you choose to use as your capsule and why?

Let's see, there was this time we enclosed the basement for a rec room, and behind the walls we left our names and the date, but, somehow, I don't think that qualifies as a time capsule.  SOOOOOOO:

After some contemplation, I decided since I cannot leave ALL of my house and my heirlooms to my family, I would try to pack into my hope chest the best of the best.  This chest was made by Mr. Lantz of Broadway, Rockingham County, Virginia.  He made furniture for both of my grandmothers, my parents, and I have some of his last pieces.  Three generations appreciated his simple clean lines of furniture.


This chest is not that large, so, choices will have to be careful, wise, and probably many will need to be digital.  That concerns me, as I believe that hard copies, paper, books, have and will continue to outlast digital.  This fancy smancy digital stuff is just changing too fast.  I fear that in 15 years, the high tech storage will not be so high tech.  OH, what's a gal to do??

So, I would leave this chest of love and treasures to my grandtwins.  I think that they should have access to it any time they wish, but, would like it if they would at least open it and investigate once a year, let's pick a date, oh, let's make it on my birthday.  Yea, I think I like that.  In the year that they turn a 10, like when they turn 20, or 30, or 40, I would hope they would take out each item, and slowly absorb what is there, touch, reflect, remember, learn from the contents.

Now, the contents.  Of course, my entire genie data base, with all it's faults and errors, photos, discoveries, good and bad.  ALL THE STORIES!  The memories, those special times that I try to reflect in my genie data base.

Photos, of course, most likely digital of course.  They have my permission to glean out the thousands of "scenery" photos Man and I took in our travels.  I understand.  I would also urge them to make copies on their computers, or whatever follows computers, for their own enjoyment and so that those images survive in the new technology.

I might toss in a favorite doll or maybe my Steiff bears.  I have two Steiffs, one for each.


And, I would leave in that chest a gigantic supply of love and happiness.

Hope it all fits, and if not, I will find a larger container, or two, or - - -




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