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Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Christmas in the Desert

Merry Christmas to each of you reading along and staying in touch with us!  We value this connection!

Since our arrival in early December, this has been a peaceful time of relaxing and taking in the sites of the Borrego Springs area, as well as enjoying gatherings with fellow RVers. 
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We went with Karen & Bob to the outdoor market at College of the Desert one day… goodness!  Had never experienced a “flea market” with so much bling and high-end items… could even purchase a sports car there!!! Met more of their Canadian friends... fun day, ay!!!

Took a drive one day to Julian to look around… hadn’t been there for some 30 years.  Tom toured the Eagle Gold Mine and, of course, we ate apple pie!
The evening of the Winter Solstice, we had a gathering and enjoyed time with friends. Beautiful evening, amazing sunset and good visits around the fire. 
In the group photo, back row, left to right… Tom, Dianne, Bob, Karen, Harry, Shoko, Nina, Cherie, Chris, Nan & John.                                     
Front row, left to right… Judy, Linda, Steve, Dave & Becky.
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(A special thanks to photographer friend Carol Dwyer for “inserting me” into the photo to include our entire group :) 
             Magical, Carol!

Yesterday, John and Tom went on an outing to Obsidian Butte near Sonny Bono National Wildlife Refuge at the south end of the Salton Sea… going rockhounding in a Miata was a fun first! 
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I drove to Fallbrook for the day to visit my parents and tour Silvergate Retirement Residence where they will be moving in a week or so.  Very nice… beautiful place, lovely one-bedroom apartment.  Like living in a nice hotel with a dining room and room service!  Such a deal!  Had a nice lunch there with them and my brother, Don. 

Congratulations and best wishes, Mom & Dad!
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So, tomorrow is Christmas Eve and this year will soon come to a close.  We send best wishes to each of you for a Merry Christmas and blessings in the new year!

Hugs, Dianne & Tom

Turn over a new leaf, begin a new… may this be a special time of reflection and anticipation.  May the broken parts heal, may the sadness vanish, may your good fortunes multiply, and may you each find an abundance of blessings in the new year!

Sunday, December 7, 2014

The beautiful, peaceful desert…

Hello from Borrego Springs, California where we have set up on BLM land for a few weeks of boondocking in a favorite spot!  The photo at top is the view from our dooryard. 

After great visits and adventures these past two months, we will sit tight here for a good part of December to just relax and hang out.  As you can see by the photo below, my three traveling companions settled right in.


Best wishes to all!  Dianne & Tom

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Southern California

Hoping each of you enjoyed a nice Thanksgiving holiday!  The last two weeks of November flew by for us, and here it is December 3rd and I am finally posting an “end of November” blog update  :)   Not many photos in this post, as we have reached this time in our travels when we are retracing our route and enjoying visits with good folks we posted photos of last year.  Will include just a few of friends and family that have not appeared in previous posts.

We enjoyed a wonderful time of “reconnecting” with Kathleen & Mike at Jojoba Hills, their home park… we first met them at a small campground in North Platte, Nebraska just over two years ago when we were new to RVing… noticed their South Dakota plates and Escapees RV Club emblem, and the rest is history.  Thanks for the time together… look forward to them joining us in Quartzsite in January!

While in Fallbrook, we enjoyed time with my parents, toured the Gemological Institute and miniature museum in Carlsbad, CA with them and Canadian friends, Karen & Bob.  Had a nice lunch at the Green Dragon Tavern & Grill.  Joined in with my aunt, uncle and cousin for a special Thanksgiving dinner at my parents’ home, and were treated to a lovely meal at the Grand Tradition the next day.  In the photo below left, starting at top right, clockwise: Dad, Mom, Rob, Mamie, Bob, Dianne, Tom, Karen, Bob.    
Below right… the whole group of us in front of the Beverly Mansion at the Grand Tradition.
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Met Patty & Budd for lunch one day, enjoyed listening to music and chatting at a local nursery/restaurant on a beautiful afternoon, and we were their guests for such a nice visit and meal at their home one evening. 

Was strange to visit Fallbrook and NOT see my sister Sherri there since she and Ed have moved to Idaho.  But, we so enjoyed a visit with some of their family… went to Drew & Megan’s for dinner one evening (Sherri’s oldest son).  Megan fixed a delicious enchilada dinner for us, and we had great visits and time with them and their little boy, Asher.  Also, Leah (Sherri’s youngest) was there for the holiday, so a bonus for us! What a great time with these special people!

We had our own private rv parking spot at Sharon and Jerry’s, and enjoyed frequent visits, coffee and meals, and dinner out one night.  Great accommodations, and so convenient to our local visits and errands… thanks for the warm hospitality!

We moved on to San Diego the first of December to join Karen & Bob at Mission Bay RV Park for four days.  Great fun, frequent visits, and a day of “riding the rails” all over the area.  Saying goodbye and heading east soon, but look forward to time together again in the desert in the next few months… so glad to know our paths will cross often!

While in San Diego, long-time friends Norma & Mert came to our rv spot for a visit, and we enjoyed a wonderful lunch at the Fish Market restaurant.  They then drove us around many of the various parts of the SD Bay area that I used to frequent.  I first met them in 1975 when we were neighbors in San Diego, and have stayed in touch and been friends all this time.  So good to spend this day together… it had been two years since we last met for a visit.  Great day!
20141202_140240 Mert & Norma 20141202_140733

Our sincere appreciation and thanks to each of the great folks listed above for the many special ways you helped to make our stay in Southern California so meaningful!

Now, we are soon headed east for some desert time!  Not sure that we will be very regular with blog posts down the road… will do an update occasionally, but probably not on any regular basis.  So check in occasionally, if you like, and know that we think of you fondly and send all best wishes to each of you!

Hugs, Dianne & Tom

Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life.  It turns what we have into enough, and more.  It turns denial into acceptance, chaos to order, confusion to clarity.  It can turn a meal into a feast, a house into a home, a stranger into a friend.  - Melody Beattie

Saturday, November 15, 2014

There’s something special about returning to the desert…

Hello, all… we are SO enjoying being in the wide-open, beautiful desert again!  Our time in Moab was great, and even our pets enjoyed walking on the magical rocks!  Besides the warmer temps, the scenery, blue skies and sunshine are always a delight!
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This was our third year to attend the Moab Folk Festival, and it was better than ever!!!  Fun with Roswell friends, Nancy & Bill… great music and special times! Also, you just never know who you might run into… Tom and Kelly worked together at Monte Vista National Wildlife Refuge in Monte Vista, CO… so great to find her there and enjoy some visits!  Be well, Kelly!
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From Moab, we traveled south and had lunch in Mesquite, NV with Fallbrook classmate, Patti… she had done lots of good work on a reunion gathering last month that I did not make it to… fun to have her fill me in and share about the event.  Plus, remind me of how our paths crossed in San Diego many years ago.  Fun to catch up a bit… thanks, Patti, for making that happen!  And, in Pahrump we surprised old friend Earl Serry by stopping by his place one day, and he came to our home for breakfast one morning.  Good friends with history!
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We have enjoyed time in Pahrump, NV with RV buddies Lynn & Roger, and Diane & Dave.  Though we had not met Diane & Dave before, we felt like we already knew them through their blog and through Lynn & Roger.  Good to finally meet them… great folks… and they will be a great addition to our little desert family in Quartzsite!  We have gathered frequently, and one day Tina & Jeff drove out from Las Vegas to join in.  SO good to see them again…                a special time together!!!
IMG_6853  L-R… Dave, Diane, Roger, Lynn, Jeff, Tina, Dianne, Tom

This weekend will find us enjoying a soak at Tecopa Hot Springs and visiting a gem & mineral show in Apple Valley, CA before moving on to Jojoba Hills RV Park in Aguanga, CA for a week.  Looking forward to time with friends Kathleen & Mike there, as well as family and friends in the area. Then, on to Fallbrook  for time with friends there and Thanksgiving with my parents and a favorite aunt and uncle.  Be seeing you all soon!

So, before we know it another month will be coming to a close.  As we celebrate Thanksgiving, we are most grateful for our many friends and family, with each of their unique qualities, and for all of our blessings.  We keep good thoughts for those dealing with sadness and health issues… wishing each of you peace and comfort!

With grateful hearts… Dianne & Tom

“If man is to survive, he will have learned to take a delight in the essential differences between men and between cultures. He will learn that differences in ideas and attitudes are a delight, part of life's exciting variety, not something to fear.”     Gene Roddenberry

Saturday, November 1, 2014

Greeting From Moab, Utah

Wow!  This past month has flown by and it’s hard to believe it’s November already!  After the busy first two weeks of October and many good visits, we had a few quiet days at Rito Hondo Reservoir near Creede, Colorado.  Enjoyed a good trout dinner our first night there; Tom caught trout each day and put some in the freezer!   Such a beautiful, peaceful location! 
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Our next stop was for some good family time with Kevin, Kirsten, Logan and Owen.  Their new house is so bright and sunny, and a great fit for their family.  It was a busy visit with time of fishing, making chokecherry jelly, baking, and enjoying time together.  Our grandsons are growing and changing so!        Special people; good times!!!!
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So, now here we are in Moab, Utah.  We will spend ten days or so here in this beautiful place, and three days of that will be at the Moab Folk Festival.  Red rocks and music… doesn’t get any better than that!!!20141031_144200 
Be well, everyone!  Dianne & Tom
There is something truly magical about this land of red rocks!  Walking on rock must be good for the soul :)

Thursday, October 16, 2014

October on the road… family & friends :)

Hello everyone… hope each of you is enjoying fall!

After a couple of really busy weeks, we are about to disappear into the mountains near Creede, Colorado for some fishing, relaxing and taking in the beauty of some favorite places!  Probably no cell service or internet for awhile… on to Bayfield, CO around the 21st.

This blog post is full of photos of family and friends that many of you will not know.  For family and friends of those in the photos that do know these fine folks, we hope that you will enjoy seeing the photos and hearing about our visits during this special time. To those we did not get a chance to see… next time :)

Once we left the campground, our first visit was with Kayla & Weston in Cheyenne.  We arrived the day they signed papers to purchase their first house!  They arranged for the realtor to let us see it… what fun!  They will be able to move in at the end of this month!  We had great visits while there with them!!! Congrats, kids!
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Next stop was to visit Joan, Chuck, Sharla & Dwight in Rexford, KS.  We enjoyed meals together and visits.  Enjoyed seeing the remodel progress on Sharla & Dwight’s home... very nice!  Thanks for the good food and great visits, each of you!  Good times together!
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In Pueblo, we were able to meet up with Steve & Sylvia… it had been some 30 years since Tom had seen them.  We always feel like we “know” them thru Marjie, so it was great to connect!  They drove up from La Veta to shop, and we had coffee and a visit in our rig in a Sam’s parking lot… very nice!  And, we look forward to getting together at their ranch one of these days!!!  Also, we enjoyed beautiful fall colors on La Veta pass!
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We had a great visit with Marjie and Chuck, and here is a shot of them being silly while looking at a historical map with Tom.  Always a good time together!!!

We met Doug, Darneil and Neva for breakfast and a good catch-up visit one morning!  You REALLY don’t want to stick your tongue out, Doug, when I’m snapping pictures!

One day we took a ride with Bunny & Ken to visit their ranch in La Veta… what a beautiful property!  Being together was just like old times after all our years of friendship and raising kids… the human kind and the goat kids!  Thanks for such a nice day, and we look forward to hearing about the progress of your projects!!!
20141011_140231 Bunny & Ken

While in Alamosa, we parked in Marilyn & Braxton’s yard and enjoyed the great views and convenient location!  Had good visits with them and so appreciate the hospitality!  Here they are all dressed up heading to church, plus a photo of Braxton and Tom working on a tractor project.
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Also, enjoyed a wonderful catch-up visit with longtime-friend, Carol Ann.  As always, a good visit with her!!!  Thanks, Carol Ann! 

Rain cancelled our picnic-in-the-park plans with Kate, Ryan, Lucy and Obie one day, so they came to our rig for lunch instead… good family times together, and such adorable grandchildren!!! In January, Lucy will turn four and Obie will be two. A busy household, to say the least, and we are grateful for the times we spent together!  Wonderful family… good job, Kate & Ryan!!! In the last photo, the kids were examining Grampa’s prosthesis and trying to understand that strangeness :)
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Our final visit in the beautiful San Luis Valley was with Margaret & Tyler… we parked at their ranch for a couple of days. We missed Jordyn, since she is away at college, but it was fun to be Morgan’s “practice client” for a pedicure and manicure in her cosmetology class!  We enjoyed good meals and visits with all three of them, plus taking in the horses, gardens, great views and a peaceful setting! Thank you, friends!!!
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With appreciation to you ALL for the wonderful visits and special times reconnecting!!!  Now, off to the mountains!

Be well, everyone!!!  Hugs, Dianne & Tom

“The mountains are calling, and we must go!”