Monday, September 17, 2012

Relaxin' in Albuquerque Area

WEDNESDAY, September 26
Another Edgewood sunrise
     Today we didn’t even LEAVE Randy’s place!  Our accomplishments reflected a day of rest!  Rick got a haircut, we did a load of laundry, and I baked two batches of molasses bread to put into the freezer of the trailer.  That is about it!  I spent the afternoon making three birthday cards also!  Ryan helped us moved the trailer from its FULL HOOKUPs location inside the fence to the electric only out by the garage.  The pushing process wasn’t TOO difficult.  Dry ground helped!  Rick was able to get the truck into position, and then we backed it across the parking area to the same “slot” we used last year with the tent trailer. 
     Other than that?  Time to visit with Ryan, Patty, and Rachael!  

Tuesday, September 25
Transition Day
Sunrise over the Sandias
     We are back out in Edgewood now!  Quiet morning and a few last minute chores spent with Mom...I even got up in time to catch a beautiful sunrise over the Sandia Mts.   After lunch we took three loads down to the truck (we seem to be taking more than we brought), including bringing the bikes up from the storage room.  It is much cooler today, even a few sprinkles along with considerable wind out at Randy's.  Picked up pizzas for dinner and were surprised to see not just Rachael but also Regan tonight!  Randy is gone for work up in Spokane, WA right now.  
     Happy to be back in our trailer tonight!  

Monday, September 24
Work Day! 
     Today was our last chance to finish up the list of 'chores' Mom had ready for us.  Rick has already taken care of a new shower head, vent deflector, and some other minor chores, but we had more to take care of today!  Mom also got her laundry done which I helped with.  
Ceramic sun now up in kitchen
     On Rick's list - remove the drapes, clean the fridge coils, fix the hummingbird feeder, tie up the awning for the winter, flip the bed mattress, and install several hooks for hanging artwork.   On my list?  Finish painting the ceramic sun, stitch the drapes together and help make a 'pusher' from a dowel rod, hem the new tablecloth for the kitchen.  It seems God is using my sewing skills this trip to help people.  Mom and I were on a 'roll' until the machine jammed up royally just before we started in on the tablecloth.  It probably took us an hour to get it working again.  We couldn't find the manual and I couldn't get an answer on the internet.  We aren't sure how we 'fixed' it, but it worked!  Hurray!  
New tablecloth made smaller so it fits the table! 
     I don't think I went beyond the laundry room today outside least not yet! I know I haven't really gotten 'dressed' yet!
     Later....ok. I asked Mom if she wanted me to get the mail, so I went clear down to the lobby and then to the office to pick up a package.  And then....I had to actually get dressed because Rick and I took a short walk before ending back up at Wal-Mart to get a missing ingredient for our taco salad dinner!  Adventuresome day, but productive!

Sunday, September 23
     Church this morning at Covenant Presbyterian on Candalaria Blvd. in Albuquerque.  I really like this church Mom is attending - foremost, the cross banner up front is done in rainbow ribbon colors, the choir wears stoles of pastel rainbow colors (that look nearly tie dyed, but they aren't), and the atmosphere is relaxed, reverent, and casual!  There are a number of scribbles I could do from the service, but to date I have only finished one!  
     Around 1 we went to the Ho Lo Ma Chinese Restaurant just around the corner.  I decided to be bold and ordered something different from the menu: Chicken Stir-Fry in a Bird's Nest!  I didn't expect the nest to be french fries, but it was good!  Mom had chicken cashew, and Rick Kung Pau.  
Chicken Stir-fry in a Bird's Nest! 
     Mom and I went shopping at the Coronado Mall - she was looking for a velour, snuggly loungewear outfit.  No such luck at Penneys or Macy's.  I found some shorts, white pants, and a knit top on sale at Penneys.  
     Evening spent visiting with Krystal Irby from Baker City!  Krystal lives at the Three Fountains in the unit across the circle from Mom.  She is teaching at McKinley Middle School and doing very well.  A fun time talking 'shop' and more.  

Saturday, September 22
Click HERE for all Albuquerque pictures through today
     We were up EARLY this morning to try and beat the heat!  Shortly after 7, we head downstairs to the basement to get our bikes out.  We find the storage door dead-bolted.  The key won't work.  No maintenance workers in sight.  All is quiet on a Saturday morning!  So.....we walk to the Village Inn restaurant next to JoAnn's and eat breakfast!  Our intention was to eat down in Old Town in the middle of our bike ride, but....change of plans. 
Jetty jacks along the river. 
     By 8am, we returned to Three Fountains to find our bikes were now "out of prison", we loaded them into the truck, and took off for the Paseo del Norte access to the Paseo de Bosque Parkway, a 16 mile one-way multi-use path along the Rio Grande River.  For much of the way, the paved path winds between the river and the irrigation channel next to it.  We quickly wondered what the large metal fence structures were along the river, later discovering them to be jetty jacks that were built in the 50's to hold back debris during flooding. 
     The pathway was BUSY on a Saturday morning!  We found serious bikers and casual couples out for a ride, in-line skaters, a little boy on a scooter, teens on skateboards, tandem bikes for adults, and tandems for parent and child, serious joggers, and recreational joggers, plus plenty of walkers!  You had to stay awake to avoid the congestion at times! 
     About 3 miles in we found fire engines, ambulance, police vehicles on the gravel road next to the path and activity down by the river.  On the return trip a couple hours later, a news helicopter was circling the area, and most of the emergency vehicles were just getting ready to leave.  I will have to add an update after tonight's news to find out what happened.  It wasn't good, whatever it was! 
Rick on Rio Grande Bike Bridge
     We chose NOT to ride in to Old Town since we had already eaten (and it is 2 miles off the path into OT), so continued on the bike path down past the aquarium, Tingley Beach Park (potty stop!), and the zoo. The riding was easy with a very slight downhill (that's the way a river runs!).   Past the zoo and a half mile or so from Bridge Street, we turned around to find part of the reason for the easy riding was the slight tail wind we had been enjoying!  It wasn't TOO bad, but noticeable on the return trip!   All in all, I estimate the milege at about 18 miles round trip.
    Short side trip on the way north to ride UP onto the Interstate bike bridge over the Rio Grande.  Not much water in the river!  The bridge is beautifully decorated with inlaid metal animal designs along the edges and metalwork on the cross-braces.    
Turtles 'talking' at Nature Center
     We also stopped on the way back at the Rio Grande Nature Center.  Had to park the bikes as nothing other than foot traffic is allowed on the nature center trails.  A wonderful pond alive with ducks, geese, and turtles.  Great viewing 'windows' inside and out.  A Cub Scout pack was visiting while we were there.  The nature center also provided another 'potty stop'! 
     Our wildlife spotting wasn't much today: a lizard on the path, elephants at the zoo, and the geese, ducks, and turtles at the nature center.  We HEARD many birds along the path, however! 
     Back to the apartment to watch a Hallmark movie with mom and relax! Tonight we will meet Jed downtown at UNM where he is playing volleyball and exchange our laptop power cords so we will each have power again!  Then I can download some pictures and get this entry posted for the first time in five days!! 
Posterized photo of Jed spiking! 
     Later.... Spent 4 hours tonight at the Johnson Center at UNM!  First to watch Jed play a very close, but ultimately losing, match. Jed's team had just 6 players (5 at times), so Jed had to play front row when he is normally a back row specialist.  He did well!   Then to go with Jed, as a Lobo League 'guest' into the main gym where the Lobo Women's Volleyball team was playing a match with University of Wyoming.  The Lobos had lost the first game, but came back to win the next three.  Good volleyball watching tonight!   AND...I have my laptop power cord back! 
     Addendum:  Just checked the online Albuquerque news and discovered a hot air balloon crashed into the Rio Grande at 8am this morning and the bosque bike path was used to access the river to transport 3 of the 8 passengers to hospitals.  Rick and I had seen at least 6 balloons in the air as we drove up I-25 to our parking spot this morning.   Answer to what was going on this morning along the path!

Friday, September 21
     So, obviously from the above entry, Santa Fe became Old Town, Albuquerque!  Albuquerque was founded in 1706 so we are talking OLD here, as far as the west goes!
Sign in Old Town Plaza

     We drove down and found a parking space (for our $3 donation!) near The Hacienda, and near the historic Church of San Felipe de Neri.  We started our visit at the church, an old adobe structure with beautiful spires and a cool, quiet memorial garden.  When we entered the sanctuary, I thought the cleaning lady was asking me to take my shoes off!  But she thought my sandals were unique and wanted to know where I had purchased them!  (And it wasn't my Uganda ones!)  As most Catholic churches, the sanctuary was filled with statues and icons, beautiful artwork and decorative painting. 
Church of San Felipe de Neri
     Across from the church is the Old Town Plaza Square, a tree filled area with performance gazebo, etc.  We poked around a variety of shops, including one I especially wanted to visit: The Christmas store.  It advertised a nativity display, and it certainly had a wide variety, some of them from SERV.  I really liked two in particular: an abstract one with just a stick, turquoise head, and leather band or cape for Mary and Joseph, and a little baby Jesus covered with a beaded blanket.  The other was done with driftwood and carved figures.  Several different varieties done by an assortment of Santa Fe artisans.  We picked up an ornament and some pepper covers for our white lights! 
Postole Soup!
     More shops and shopping, mostly browsing.  We ate lunch at The Red Feather, while listening to a group of live musicians playing in a courtyard: guitar, pan flute, recorder type flute, etc.  They were GOOD!  In fact, Rick purchased two CDs upon leaving!  Playing old Pop music with an Indian flute flair.  Really nice!  I was a little adventuresome at lunch, trying the Pork Postole soup.  A large bowl of shredded pork and hominy, with onion and pepper spices.  It was good and not too spicy for me!  Mom had a burger and Rick quesadillas that were a little disappointing for him. 
Musicians in Old Town plaza
     Otherwise?  Alot of turquoise and silver jewelry, pueblo pottery of intricate and expensive nature, typical junk souvenirs, etc.  It was fun to explore, and we probably only went into a half dozen shops.  Home by 3:30ish. 
     Rick and I walked over to Dollar Tree and Wal-mart, then I continued to the UPS drop site to return the defective phone and to Jo-Ann's Fabrics, where I spent over an hour shopping!  (And due to a generous clerk who found me a flyer with coupons, got most of it for 50% off!) 
     Dinner was ice cream!!!

Thursday, September 20
     Big action of today?  Mom and I went out to lunch at Olive Garden with a group of ladies from the Presbyterian Church.  It was their monthly 'lunch bunch' gathering!  Excellent meal of soup and salad and bread!  Unlimited on needless to say, I was full at the end.  Then we went to Hobby Lobby across the street to browse... and shop!  I picked up a few items for my Christmas ornaments and more. 
Mom doesn't have many bowls scaled
to the size salads I make!
     In the meantime, Rick got out his bike and followed the pathways out to Lowe's to check out some things for his mom.  Later in the afternoon, we went back for Mom to look at some of the possibilities for a new microwave cart.  My new phone arrived from TMobile while Mom and I were gone and I got it all set up.  
    Dinner is pizza and a big salad I made in a dishpan! 
    We talked of Santa Fe tomorrow, but will wait and see how Grandma is doing - we walked her alot in the past few days!!! 

Wednesday, September 19
Morning contrails of jets from behind Sandia Mts. God
      This will not be that exciting an entry!  Lazy morning around the apartment - I figured out to use Mom's computer for everything except actually painting in my picture.  Only used up 10% of my computer battery, so hopefully I will be able to last until Saturday! 
     Rick took a wa-jog out around the neighborhood before lunch.  I did some research on Regan's place of business and TMobile.  After lunch Rick and I headed out.  Destination?  Gas, TMobile, haircut, and produce!! 
     All accomplished, although TMobile did not give great customer service, basically saying the phone I bought was worthless.  Did finally manage to get a replacement sent to Mom's address.  Regan cut my hair while we discussed the cockroach problem in her apartment!  Gas for $3.58 and that was a bargain!  Prices have really gone up in the past couple of weeks. 
    We bought plenty of veggies and fruits at Trader Joe's and the Farmer's Market - for a stir fry tonight and a big salad coming up!  After dinner Mom and I made a gluten free muffin recipe from Karen R.  They taste good!

Tuesday, September 18
Movin' into Town!
Three Fountains complex!
     Today we left our trailer and moved into Albuquerque to spend the next few days with Mom at her Three Fountains Apartment!  Randy drove Mom back in her car, while Rick and I followed with the truck, bikes in the back!  We got our bikes locked up down in the basement storage of the complex.
Lunch and 'where to go' at State Fair
4 yr old dancer
     Then it is in to the state fair for the afternoon!  Bite to eat at the vendors, and a chance to wander around amid the arts and crafts halls, the flower exhibits, Native American and Hispanic Centers.  Watched a four year old dancer from the pueblos north and Rick enjoyed a strawberry-peach pie, purely for charitable purposes! I really enjoyed the flower display area and the student artwork - a whole building with art from MANY schools!  
Beautiful cactus in the Flower Show Barn
     Patty drove in to town after work and we all went to Papa Felipe's for dinner.  Excellent restaurant!  Good sopapillas!  I had a vegetarian fajita which was excellent.  Tasted my first margarita .... not real impressed.  Glad Rick and I were sharing it. 
     I am typing on Mom's computer tonight.  Her power cord did not work on my laptop, so I shall conserve my power for downloading and painting pictures only!  Just until Saturday evening when Jed comes back up to ABQ and we can switch our cords! 

Monday, September 17
    Beautiful sunrise this morning around 6:30am as I left the trailer to head inside.  It has been this way most mornings!  I forget how wonderful it is to be able to see an uninterrupted skyline!  
    Morning spent finishing up the window seat sewing for Ran and Patty.  Mom and I got it done.  It looks pretty nice!  Later in the evening, I used some of the leftover fabric to make a new clothespin bag for the clothesline.  It came out mighty fine also!  
Window Seat all finished! 
    Lazy day...don't even think we got our after dinner walk in tonight!  I started needlework on my ornaments and have about a third done with the initial yarn.  
     Realized after I spent much of the afternoon on my laptop upstairs without the power cord, that Jed had switched the cords when he left.  I have his mini cord and he mine.  I was down to 18% power left when discovered.  I was able to use Patty's to charge the laptop back up, and hopefully Mom's cord will fit until Saturday when Jed will be back in town for a volleyball tourney and we can make the exchange!  
     Tomorrow we are heading into town to stay at Mom's for 5-6 days.  

Sunday, September 16
    Church this morning with Randy, Patty, Rick, and Mom at the Good Shepherd Lutheran Church.  I did draw a scripture scribble from the service!  It is an early service so we didn't see Rachael, Ryan, or Jed before leaving!  
    The above all went to a movie during the afternoon.  Randy had smoked some pork during the night and it was delicious!  We didn't wait for the younger set to return before eating!  A walk with the dogs later in the day and plenty of football before sitting down for games.  Played a new game called Bezzerwezzer (a trivia game only with a few twists) which Jed won, and then two rounds of ImagineIF which is always entertaining!  
     Jed helped me figure out problems with HugIn on the computer and a round of Cribbage before I went to bed.  He was up for hours more probably!  

Saturday, September 15, 2012
     Well, the weather is back to more normal New Mexico fall weather: warmer days, clear cool nights.  We have taken after dinner walks the past two evenings, and Rick and I enjoyed an even longer walk yesterday afternoon.  Rick has been out for a bike ride. 
     What have we accomplished in the past couple of days?  I have been working with Mom R to cover the window seat pads for Randy and Patty.  Alot of fussy sewing!  One more section to complete (we had to wait for more material today) and it will be done, in addition to three pillows.  Ran and Patty did pick up the plastic canvas I needed, so I can get started on the rest of the ornaments.  
Game night - Trivial Pursuit!
     This afternoon Rick and I went to Wal-Mart and the Universal Blood Services motorhome to donate blood. We both gave. Fast and easy.  We will now be in their "system" as well as the Red Cross.  We did our laundry today, including all the sheets!  Clean bedding in the trailer!  
     Jed arrived this afternoon around 4:30.  Grandma made meat loaf for dinner (we had spaghetti Friday night).  A long Trivial Pursuit game with Patty, Ryan, Rachael, Jed, and Ginger, which Ginger eventually won!  

Thursday, September 13, 2012
     A night of solid rain - I don't think I have ever been in New Mexico during this solid a day and night of rain!  Hopefully enough that the ground might actually get to soak a little up.  
     A truly lazy day!  Most of us were finally showered and dressed by noon!  I got caught up with a couple of drawings and postings in the morning.  

Trailer tucked into back yard trees at Randy's. 

     Major trip to Wal-Mart to pick up all those things we discovered in Pagosa that would be nice to have in the trailer:  a space heater, a clip light for additional reading and in the morning when I get up early, plug adapters, a new sewer hose system that will make life easier for Rick!  We bought sheets.  The one thing I wanted, more plastic canvas, I couldn't get at this Wal-Mart.  Maybe next week at Joanne's Fabrics.  I have finished 20 ornaments and can't do any more until I get plastic.  
     Stopped enroute home to meet Randy and Mom at the credit union to notarize a power of attorney for Mom.  Picked up groceries for last night's chicken enchilada dinner. 

All hooked up to water, sewer, and electric!  
     The trailer is parked in the motorhome pad that Randy built for Mom and Pop.  Full hookups!!  Only problem is you drive a motorhome head in.  You back a trailer into place.  Hookups are on the wrong side for us.  So....we pulled it in as far as we could and still get the truck out.  The ground was already soft from the rain.  It took three times to jack up the tongue, slide a board under the wheel, PUSH forward (all three of us) to the end of the board.  Repeat.  We got the trailer up far enough, then pulled the truck out of the yard.  Hopefully in two weeks we can reverse the process without incident!  
Kamere likes Mom's lap!
     By Thursday night the skies were clearing.  By bedtime the stars were glorious, the coyotes were howling, the dogs barking.  It was wonderfully COLD!!!  Rick even tried out the new space heater.  During the night you could hear the coyotes again, and suddenly hear the RUSH of dogs racing past the trailer to the fence.  Randy has three big dogs that sleep in the sunroom with access outside at all times.  Plus a new little lap dog that Regan found on a "dark and stormy night" in the road.  It is part chihuahua and....?  Black and white, and quite lovable!  Mostly has adopted Grandma's lap!  

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