Monday, December 24, 2018

BLM Land, Costly California, Beautiful Lazy Day

On Sunday, Dec. 23rd Bill and I were first awakened at 6:40 when Clemson got up off the bed. I was already getting up but Bill is faster at getting dressed so he took him out. We were both pleased that he slept well through the night and this was his first movement. I continued to get dressed while they crawled back into the warm bed. It was a mild morning again, around 52F/11C so I left my wind breaker behind but slipped on my fingerless gloves.

The moon in the west sky this morning
I like to text Donna back home once I get out the door and we exchange weather and sometimes our daytime plans so these gloves come in handy. Today, I decided to walk out of the park through the east gate and back to the gravel road behind us. 

Looking back to the west at the park
It leads to the west, where you can boondock for free and to the south is the BLM 2-week camping for $40. I kept my eyes peeled for smooth rocks to paint, this area is abundant with them. I walked the road and I think I found Elva and Jerry’s set up, way back there.

Is this one you, Elva?
(I was a long way away so the zoom is fuzzy)

I walked to the BLM entrance 

and then turned north following the road to the Chevron fuel station. You need a loan to buy gas or diesel here so we never do. 

Back through the desert area I made it home 45 minutes later. 

Behind me, the sun rose
I could feel that walk in my upper thighs and it felt good. I even managed to walk 100 steps backwards on a flat area in the park to use those muscles. This is something Chatty Dorothy does and explained to me.

The song says "You'll never walk alone"
I seldom do, my shadow mate is always with me somewhere
She hurt her lower back years ago and wears a brace. Her doctor suggested she walk, as per her usual, but the doc also recommended she walk backwards (on a straight path) for 100 steps, that it was equivalent to walking 500 steps forward. If you try it, you will notice that it uses different muscles in your legs and I find that for those of you who have a bit of a slouch, you tend to walk straighter with shoulders back. I am trying it most mornings.

Playing tag with the moon
Not sure what the splotches are on this lone picture
We had our coffee and tea together while reading blogs posts and Bill caught up on our banking, reconciling our statements. Because our Sirius radio station is sporadic (at best) here under the tree, Bill found the Holiday music on the tv. A tip we picked up from Rob and Pat and it reminded us that Dad always had it playing on their tv in their apartment. We are after all 2 days before the big day and we’ve enjoyed listening to the seasonal tunes.

Back in the park, the sun also rises
Since my Christmas cake turned out a little dry this time, I searched for a nice easy Brandy/Rum recipe for sauce on line. Then I divided the 2 loaf cakes into 2 serving baggies for puddings later on. When it felt like the right time, I fried up bacon and eggs for our mid-morning breakfast. That hit the spot. What a beautiful day this is, at 65F/16C before 11 am. Perfect! The winds are variable between 5 and 9 mph, just enough to keep us comfortable.

Looks like a drag race going on here
We finished dishes and took turns getting cleaned up ourselves. My ‘chore’ today was to cover my gray roots – again! I have vowed to do them before Christmas so today is the day that works for me. Bill moved outside with his laptop and Clemson to start working on a blog post. He said he’d be nearby if I needed some help applying the colour. I managed just fine and I see he did too as he finished his post today. You can check it out here.
The pretty puzzle was finished for me
 I took a walk up to the front of the park with our garbage and part way there, the ‘tractor guy’ pulled up beside me. Asking if I had trash in the bags, he told me to drop them in the ‘bucket’. I’ve never been told that before but I put them in the scoop. I also asked him about picnic tables and was told why the sites don’t have them here. No worries, we’ll continue on without one, it just would have been nice to have a table to work on for different things.

So, I found this intriguing one

On my way back, you know I had to stop and work on the puzzle. Since the one Pat and I had worked so hard on was finished, I put the first one I did away and got a new 1000 pc. puzzle out. It took quite a while to turn and separate all the pieces but eventually I got there and completed the border before heading back. I noticed Ron out so I chatted with him for a while, then Loree as she returned from doing laundry and continued home.

It took me quite a while to separate, flip and do the border
on this 1000 pc. puzzle
Inside the Suite, I finished making bundles with the cake and proceeded to mix up a batch of rum sauce. It didn’t take long and I finished just in time for the Ice Cream Social so we walked up with Rob, Pat, George and Suzie. Of course, I had a scoop of chocolate again with the fixings. Why not for $1? With the exception of our Blue Bunny no sugar ice cream bars, we have no ice cream in the freezer so this was a treat again.

Walking up for ice cream

Vanilla, Chocolate or Strawberry
served up by Barb and Gordon
Happy Hour, Bill took chairs down to Ron and Loree’s. I’d made up a new batch of Beer Margaritas earlier so that was what I took while Bill took a Zero Coke. We were sitting in the shade so I made sure to change into long pants and take a hoodie. It was a nice couple of hours, George and Suzie arrived later after having visitors at their site first.
Soft music playing
Back home, we weren’t hungry right away so while waiting until a bit later, I hopped on the bike and took a spin around the park. The sky was putting on another spectacular performance for me. When I returned, we watched the tail end of Home Alone with Macauley Culkin. It always gives us a chuckle. Home Alone 2 followed it so since we’d never seen the whole movie, we watched it together.

Happy Hour at Ron and Loree
with the hot air balloon we all threatened to steal
Only part of us for a while
I preheated the air fryer and we started cooking butterfly shrimp and French fries tonight around 6:30. When you’re cooking inside, time doesn’t matter as much. The fries and shrimp were delicious and only took a total of 25 minutes to cook.

On my bike ride, I snapped some pretty sky pictures

and I actually captured the sunset
 We decided to try the Christmas cake (pudding now) with the warmed sauce I made before emptying the dish water. Woops, forgot to take a picture. It tasted pretty good but Bill wasn’t crazy about the sauce. Next time, I’ll make a different one or use rum instead of the brandy I had. There is also a brown sugar sauce that I’ve had but never made.

This has been a great day and I got lots of steps and bike rides in today. Tomorrow morning is Bocce Ball so I need to get a good night’s sleep. 😊 Thank you for stopping by today. I enjoy reading your comments if you care to leave one.


  1. I like the idea of walking backwards, could see how that would use different muscles for sure. Beautiful sunset pics! Never tire of great sunsets! Dinner looks awesome oh and that ice cream oh yum! Chocolate is my fave. Love the balloon too!

    1. Try walking backwards, slowly and you'll feel the difference.
      I knew you were a chocolate kind of gal! :)

  2. It was another wonderful day enjoying this amazing winter weather, ice cream social and time with friends.

  3. Your ice cream looked yummy, though it wouldn't have been chocolate for me. Nice sunset pics. The shrimp look good and I wish Gerry would eat them. Some cooking to do today for our Christmas dinner in Milton tomorrow but will plan to get out for a walk in our 'winter wonderland' here in West Grey. Have a great Christmas Eve sis and friends!

    1. I guess I never grew up, still love the chocolate. The shrimp is very good and plump. He wouldn't taste a strong shrimp taste though with the batter. We'll also try the ones not battered ones. Pat and Rob bought wings to try as well.
      Happy Christmas Eve to you, Gerry and John too. Have a fun day!

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  5. Yes. That is us! Yesterday was another beautiful day. We stopped at the Chevron station cuz Jerry wanted an ice cream. I saw a bottle of Sutter Home brand of Pino Grigio. I asked the clerk the price. $20.00 !!!!!! For Sutter Home brand! That would make someone give up drinking wine. Lol....Elva Shannon

    1. I thought so! :)
      Yes, Ron priced 30 cans of beer yesterday up there and it was $37 total! He left it on the counter.
      Merry Christmas Elva!

  6. I'd like to say thank you today for your nice writings in your blog all year long. I do enjoy reading it and just know even if I don't regularly comment all your effort is appreciated. Wish we were there too and could participate, but maybe some day.. Have a Merry Christmas Patsy, Bill and Clemson and a Happy and Healthy New Year.

    1. Thank you so much Marlene for your kind words. We were really hoping you'd make it this year but things happen and now we'll hope to see you again soon.
      Merry Christmas to you and Benno and all the best in 2019.

  7. Patsy,
    Busy, busy eh. The spots on that pic mean you need to clean the lens as when the light hits just right you can see spots. Try holding the camera up to the sun and move around and the spots make nice reflections so sometimes they are nice.
    Merry Christmas,

    1. Hi Bob, thank you. I thought that but other pictures don't have them so i was easily confused. I'll try the tip you suggested. :)
      Merry Christmas Bob!

  8. We have been told by various medical professional to do that backward walk.

    Feliz Navidad from Mexico.

    1. I'd never heard of it before. :)
      Feliz Navidad from us to you in Mexico! Have a wonderful day!

  9. Great idea, walking backward. Another one runners use is to take really big steps sideways as you move forward. Looks weird, but also used different muscles. Have fun walking!!
    A very merry Christmas to you both!!

    1. We do learn something every day! :)
      Thank you! and Merry Christmas to you, Cooper, Jesse and Jonathan as well!