Tuesday, November 29, 2016

A WONDERFUL THANKSGIVING CELEBRATION

Tuesday, November 29 – We had our annual Thanksgiving gathering at our daughter, Carrie's, house. She's been having Thanksgiving at her place every year but one since she moved to Houston. Some years, nearly thirty or more friends attended. This year was a little more subdue with a small group of eight.

Her new digs, a loft in downtown Houston, was a perfect location and with plenty of room to set-up two long tables for dinner. But before dinner we had to have our traditional corn hole game. Nick brought over his game boards, and we set them up on the roof patio. A perfect location with perfect weather to enjoy some pre-dinner games and drinks.

Looks like Paul may have made a perfect shot.
2016 Thanksgiving

Marsha shows off her form.
2016 Thanksgiving

Corn hole participants.
2016 Thanksgiving

Once Carrie signaled that the turkey should be done, it was all hands to the kitchen to finish up the many side dishes. Everyone chips it to help get the food on the table. Paul is the official turkey carver and dirty dishes washer, and they keep him busy with all the food preparations.

2016 Thanksgiving

2016 Thanksgiving

Of course, we had plenty of food and everyone sure enjoyed themselves.

2016 Thanksgiving

Lots of toasting going on. We had lots to be thankful for.
2016 Thanksgiving

After dinner and a little clean-up, we watched some football on TV, enjoyed a few beverages, and played board games. Carrie has a collection of games, and we always have a fun time with the “youngins.”

Eventually, we gave-up trying to keep up with the “kids” and headed home to the Houston Elks Lodge RV area to relax. It's hard work trying to be young again!

2016 Thanksgiving

Marsha will be flying back to Ohio on Saturday, December 3, to spend some time with her dad, family and friends. Paul flies later in the month for a few days over Christmas. Bella will be well taken care of by a friend from the Elks Lodge.

Thanks for stopping by. Hope to see y’all back real soon. Have a great day!

Monday, November 21, 2016

IT'S A COLORFUL WORLD, HOUSTON!

Sunday, November 20 - We got together with our daughter, Carrie, today to attend the Houston Via Colori Street Painting Festival. With more than 200 artists, it has become one of the city's signature art festivals. The artists transform the streets of downtown into mind-blowing murals.

Via Colori

Via Colori is a fundraiser for the Center for Hearing and Speech (CHS). CHS is the only full-service resource in Houston to teach children with hearing loss to listen, speak and read without the use of sign language. The Center has been dedicated to improving the lives of children with hearing loss through clinical, education and support services. Last year, CHS provided services to more than 8,600 children from 31 countries across Texas.

This year's theme, A Colorful World, celebrates different cultures through art, food, beverages and activities. Entertainers also perform on three stages throughout the festival.

Via Colori

Via Colori

We missed the opening event – Yoga & Mimosas presented by Barefoot Wine & Bubbly. Dang! So we had to enjoy strolling down the streets enjoying the 200 artists using mostly chalk to create absolute works of art. These artists were very talented. Even the street dedicated to children had some wonder works of art.

Via Colori

We took a break from the street art to enjoy Soaring Phoenix. This group of young people perform all across the USA raising money to benefit kids. I guess you would call them a dance-acrobat group that uses Chinese style dragons to entertain the crowd.

Via Colori

Via Colori

DSC08394

Via Colori

After a unique balancing act on pedestals about six feet high, the dragons danced among the crowd accepting cash donations for CHS. A fun way of donating....you put a dollar or more in the dragon's mouth. Neat!

Carrie making a donation.
Via Colori

Marsha showing her appreciation.Via Colori

The dragons then posed for photographs with kids, mom's and dad's and anyone wanting a picture. It was a fun way to spend an hour and very enjoyable to see the kids’ reaction to this colorful group.

Marsha had the biggest time watching these guys.
Via Colori

We then continued our walk among the artists to see the progress they were making on their street art. The time and energy these artists put into their creations is amazing. And to think it is only temporary. Luckily, it doesn't rain much in Houston so the art work should last at least until the streets are re-opened to vehicular traffic.

This is one of our favorites. Look at those eyes.
Via Colori

A look from the elevated walkway.
Via Colori

Via Colori

Via Colori

Via Colori

Via Colori

Via Colori

There was an entire section of one street dedicated to 3-D art. Amazing.DSC08337

There was a wonderful section for children to show off their artistic side. We kept commenting how we couldn’t do anything close to what some of these kids were doing. They were having a ball.

Via Colori

Via Colori

It was a fun day. We finished it off with a late lunch at a small family-run Mexican restaurant and a little work around Carrie's apartment. She recently moved so she had a few pictures and mirrors for Paul to hang. With that done, we called it a day and headed back to the Houston Elks Lodge Campground for a little card playing in the Lodge.

Carrie and Paul enjoying the sunshine.Via Colori

We wish all our family and friends a very blessed Thanksgiving day.

Thanks for stopping by. Hope to see y’all back real soon. Have a great day!

Friday, November 11, 2016

WORKING ON THE “HONEY-DO” LIST

Monday, November 7 After finishing the installation of a door window, there was one more item we've always wanted on our 5th wheel – a window awning over our livingroom windows. We have a large patio awning on that side of the trailer, but it doesn't extend down to cover these two windows. The sun really beats in and heats up the livingroom, so we need to keep the blinds closed. That tends to darken things inside the 5th wheel and blocks our view of the outside world.

The front two windows need the awning.new awning

An awning would block the sun while allowing us to enjoy the view outside. It would also give us some privacy without having to close the blinds. So once again, since we are just around the corner from PPL RV Sales and Parts here at the Houston Elks Lodge, Paul ordered an awning large enough to cover both windows.

The installation was pretty simple. There were no instructions in the awning package, so Paul Googled the installation and found several YouTube videos on installing an awning.

After measuring carefully to find the center of the windows, Paul added butyl tape (caulk) to the back of the mounting bracket and screwed it above the windows.

new awning

new awning

The next step was to fasten the arms to the awning roller.

new awning

Then with the help from his assistant, Marsha, we slid the awning into the slot provided in the bracket. This is definitely a two person step and with Marsha stretching to the fullest extent of her 5' frame, we were able to get the awning roller with the two arms into the proper slot.

new awning

It was then a simple matter of removing the two pins from the awning roller to release the lock and add tension to the roller. Again with the help of his able assistant, Paul screwed the bottom of the arms to the side of the trailer.

new awning

new awning

We had to borrow a “pull-down” wand from the neighbor to unroll the awning. Surprised a pull-down wand is not included with the new awning. After attaching the hold-down clip below the windows and doing some clean-up the job was completed.

new awning

Happy that the installation went as easily as it did, Paul relaxed the rest of the day. Marsha, his able assistant wasn't done. She spent several hours trimming the shrubbery around the Lodge. Wild weed type trees are growing up through the bushes, and Marsha just hates the lawn guys don't do something about them. So she borrowed a limb lopper and did some trimming. She has so many limbs that we'll have to put them in the dumpster on two or more occasions so there will still be room for camper's trash.

When we went up to Livingston to vote on Tuesday, we were taking a walk with friends and saw this sight. Paul and Dave discussed this strange looking thing.

trailer tow

trailer tow

So that is how he tows his 5th wheel.DSC08282-001

We have been having a super time vising with Carrie. We are almost always multi-tasking….watching football games and playing corn hole.

Good friend, Nick, and Paul.
out with carrie

Carrie
out with carrie

Mom and daughter.
out with carrie

Carrie, Paul and me

We have a new visitor this year. And he is a big one.
hawk

Bella now enjoys sleeping on a blanket pillow. What a hoot.Bella

Stop back again to see if we can find other jobs to do around the 5th wheel or the Houston Elks. Idle hands tend to get in trouble, so I'm sure we'll find things to do!

Thanks for stopping by. Hope to see y’all back real soon. Have a great day.