Saturday, December 31, 2011

About That Granddaughter, Abby (December 26 - 31)

Howdy Family and Friends,

How are y'all? Uh oh, my Texas roots are showing! Roger and I hope you had the merriest of Christmases and are looking forward to 2012. We spent Christmas Eve at a church service in Kerrville and Christmas Day with new friends at a potluck dinner at Buckhorn Lake Resort. On Christmas Day, we moved our Tour to a different spot at Buckhorn Lake. We were in the adult section where no children are allowed and with our granddaughter coming for a visit, we had to move.  We found that we liked our new spot even better and will stay in this spot until the end of January.

The view out our front window.
Looking at the Tour (right) from across the lake.

Roger going through his email.

On Monday, we drove to Austin to pick up our granddaughter, Abby. Her father, Rob, drove her to Austin from Dallas. We met at Mellow Johnny's bike shop. This is the shop owned by Lance Armstrong. After a quick lunch, Abby, Roger, Bear and I were on our way to Kerrville.

Mellow Johnny's (Roger and Bear)

Abby walking Bear around Buckhorn Lake Resort.

Abby enjoyed the playground equipment, while Bear and Roger played in the background.

Bear loves Abby!

We cannot wait for Abby to be able to ride bikes with us. We had her bring her new bike to Buckhorn for some practice. She is doing a super job and we will be able to ride with her soon! Roger did a great job helping Abby learn to ride her bike. How exciting it was for us to see her master this skill.

One of the fun things that we did with Abby was to go to Fredericksburg to see the Christmas decorations. After playing in the park, we headed out to Alamo Springs where the best hamburgers in Texas (according to Texas Monthly) are served. We thought they were great. The following pics are from the park in Fredericksburg. 

Sadly our week with Abby went much too quickly. We will miss her giggles and hugs, working on craft projects, playing Old Maid, Uno and Crazy Eight, playing soccer with Bear, our child version of the Cocktail Hour, and so many other things about this darling girl. 

 We met Abby's parents and Jackson in San Antonio, on Friday, where they are enjoying the holiday weekend. It was very hard to say goodbye to our son and his family knowing that it will be awhile before we see them again.

We want to take this opportunity to wish everyone a Happy New Year! Our wishes for you are for a joyous and healthy 2012. We are heading to Fredericksburg for a dinner and concert to bring in the new year. We look forward to the first week of 2012 in Kerrville.

Friday, December 23, 2011

About That Luckenbach, Texas (December 19 -24)

Merry Christmas Family and Friends,

Roger and I send our holiday greetings to you and your families. We wish you much happiness and joy in this week leading up to Christmas Day.

We love our spot at Buckhorn Lake RV Resort in Kerrville, Texas! We are in the beautiful surroundings of the hill country located in south central Texas. Because this is an RV resort, the social life is quite busy and the facilities are the best that we have seen. On Saturday, we went to a dinner that featured a prominent Texas, country western singer, Thomas Michael Riley. Those of you that love country music would recognize some of his songs that are sung by other artists. He has written over 500 songs! He, along with his backup group of three, performed for us and we became FANS. Not only did he give a great performance, he was extremely personable and had time for all of us.

On Sunday we drove to Luckenbach (about 45 minutes from here), to hear Tommy play at the barn/ stage made famous by Waylon Jennings's song, "Let's Go To Luckenbach, Texas." What a thrill to: (a) get to see Luckenbach and (b) hear Tommy (you bet we're on a first name basis) sing again.

Thomas Michael Riley in the center.

On Tuesday, we went to Fredericksburg, after dropping Bear off at the groomer in Kerrville. Even though I am trying to groom Bear, myself, I need some professional help every once in a while.

Fredericksburg is this great little town located 25 miles from Kerrville. It traces it's history to German immigrants which is apparent by the abundance of Germanic names and foods. It truly is a very special town and one we will revisit many times while we are in the Kerrville area.

A German Candle Pyramid in the town park. Every bit as good as the ones I just saw in Germany.

Fredericksburg's Christmas Tree

We couldn't resist this huge buck made out of scraps perched atop an old car, located on the road into Kerrville. As we continue our adventures in the RV, we are amazed at what we see along the roads.
Since we are huge fans of the three books by Steig Larsen,  we had to be among the first to see the American version of "The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo." On Wednesday, we drove an hour into San Antonio, to see it. It did not disappoint us. We loved the Swedish films, as well as the books, and this Hollywood version was even better. I won't say anything else about it in case you decide to see it.

Thursday and Friday were spent doing the final errands and preparations for Christmas. Although we are without our family, there are plenty of new friends here at Buckhorn Lake RV. There is a Christmas dinner planned for the 25th in addition to the regularly scheduled dinners that occur throughout the week.

 We did manage to get a bike ride in and loved feeling the sun on our backs! The unusually cold and wet weather has made cycling difficult, but Buckhorn has an excellent workout facility and we have made great use of the treadmills, elliptical and weight machines.

We look forward to next week when our six year old granddaughter, Abby, will join us for five days! We will remain at Buckhorn until the end of January.

Roger joins me in wishing you and your families a very happy Christmas. We appreciate you keeping up with our new way of life. 

Saturday, December 17, 2011

About Saying Farewell to Dallas and Ft. Worth (December 11 - 17)

Dear Family and Friends,

You may be wondering how RVers decorate for Christmas. As I  type this blog, I am looking at one of the best examples of the Christmas spirit that I have ever seen. Our over achieving next door neighbors, Earl and Dimah, decorated their park model (a unit that stays permanently in an RV park) differently every year. This year it is done in a the gingerbread house motif. It is adorable during the day, but spectacular at night.

With such a display, Roger and I just had to do something! The Christmas decor that we kept is back in Tucson, in our storage locker. We decided to go with poinsettias and a lighted swag of evergreen.

On Sunday morning, my dear friend Becky drove over from Dallas. It has been such a treat to be close to her during the past few weeks. We have been friends for over 35 years and she is a keeper!

Sunday afternoon was a memorial get together at my brother Chris and Diann's home. Sadly, we lost our Uncle Bill, this week and the family gathered to remember him. It was wonderful to see all the cousins.

Roger and I joined my sister Sally, her husband Charlie and their wonderful daughters Claire and Betsy for a farewell dinner on Tuesday night. Claire has followed in her father's footsteps by obtaining her CPA license this year. We are so proud of her. Charlie got to present her certification to her in Austin, a few weeks ago. Betsy is a senior at Trinity University in San Antonio (my alma mater). We are keeping our fingers crossed that she will be able to follow her dreams by going to veterinary school in the future.

Wednesday we prepared the RV for the trip to Kerrville, where we will spend Christmas. We left Terrell on Thursday morning in a mist. Fortunately we did not have to drive through a thunderstorm. Unfortunately we had a sensor light come on, indicating that there was water in the fuel tank. We spent the night in Temple, Texas at a spot located about 100 yards from Interstate 35. The following pictures show our spot at Temple.

Our RV along I 35!
Oh the noise of the trucks all night long!

Yes, those are 18 wheelers!
  Fortunately the new sensor arrived at the Freightliner shop and we were on the road by 12:30. We arrived in Kerrville in the late afternoon on Friday. We love our spot at Buckhorn RV. This is a resort as compared to a trailer park and there is a huge difference.

We spent Saturday morning washing the car, having the coach cleaned at the resort and grocery shopping. In between errands, we met our neighbors. In this small world of RVing it is fun to run across acquaintances. Parked across from us are Roger's Aunt and Uncles's dear friends that met each other years ago when they RVed together. The following pics give you an idea of our spot at Buckhorn. Please notice our squeaky clean coach. 

The bikes are under the black cover ready for us to ride.
Roger and I wish you a wonderful week filled with holiday spirit, including family, friends and great food. Thank you for reading our blog.

Saturday, December 10, 2011

About That Christmas Stuff (December 4 - 10)

Dear Family and Friends,

Howdy from Texas, ya'll!

I am hoping that this blog finds you embracing the spirit of the holiday season and not totally stressed out! Being around our grandchildren at Christmas time adds a certain sparkle when looking at the season through their eyes.

The following pictures are of Jackson's Christmas presentation at the day care center where he is in his next to the last year of school and where Abby is now an alum. Jackson wowed us with his stage presence at the performance and although you cannot possibly have the experience that we had, maybe a picture of him in his elf costume will bring a smile to you face.

A proud Grandad gets his iPhone camera ready!

Jackson (right) sporting his elf moves!

The entire cast at the finale.

Grandad congratulating Jackson on his performance

The cutest elf ever

Saturday morning was Karate School! We got to see both Abby and Jackson in action. The following are pictures from this once in a lifetime experience.

Abby and Jackson prepare to bow to Sensai (teacher).

After Karate class we went out for breakfast before returning to Abby and Jackson's house to open Christmas presents from Mimi and Grandad. Yes, Mimi and Grandad were thrilled that our grandchildren's parents let them open our gifts that morning.

Abby loves Go Go Puppy
Jackson is wondering what his present could be.

Roger and I had a wonderful week with our family in Ft. Worth and Dallas. We treasured the moments because sadly, we have to leave for Kerrville, Texas on Thursday. Our visit in the North Texas area has gone quickly. It has been great to spend so much time here.

Thank you for reading our blog and following our adventures on the road. We appreciate your interest in our travels. Thank you especially for allowing me to rave about our intelligent, beautiful grandchildren. Until next Saturday, "see ya pardner!"

Monday, December 5, 2011

About That Catching Up (November 24 - December 5)

Dear Family and Friends,

This blog is a compilation of lots of events beginning with Thanksgiving and ending with my return from Europe and decorating the Christmas tree at Rob's house. It has been a fast two weeks filled with family, travel and preparations for Christmas. The following is what happened:

Thanksgiving was at Suzanne and Rob's home. Suzanne worked very hard preparing a lovely dinner that all of us enjoyed. Roger and I are grateful for our family. Thanksgiving has always been my favorite holiday!

The day after Thanksgiving, I left for a Rhine River cruise with my mother. We arrived in Basel, Switzerland and took a bus to our port in Breibach, Germany. This was my first river cruise with a smaller boat compared to a larger cruise ship. Because the boat is so small, it is easy to get to know other passengers on the cruise as well as the staff. We cruised through France, Germany, the Netherlands and finally ended the trip in Amsterdam. The following are just a few of the pictures I took along the way.

I loved the swans cruising at different places along the Rhine.

Kathe Wohlfahrts was the place to buy the beautiful Christmas ornaments. 

The day after returning to the United States, we went to Suzanne and Rob's to decorate their Christmas tree. Nothing says Christmas like Spiderman hanging ornaments on the tree. You will see what I mean with the following pictures:



Spiderman (aka Jackson) gets into the action.

After the tree is finished, tickles with Grandad.

What a thrill it is to be in Dallas for the Christmas season. It truly is magical when seen through the eyes of your grandchildren! We are in the Dallas area until the 15th, so look for more adventures next Saturday.

Thank you for your interest in our blog. See you next Saturday!