Jan. 20 – Feb. 19, 2019

Mesa, Az.

The Instant Pot. We recieved this as a gift from friends of ours. This thing is amazing!! I have cooked a few things in it and I’m still learning but this tool is a thing of beauty! I took FROZEN chicken, like solid frozen, and in 10 minutes had tender BBQ chicken. I am so in love with it. We also made rice in it. That rice was AMAZING!! Best rice I have ever made. I used to make it on the stove but when I did sometimes it didn’t cook all the way or sometimes it would cook to long and turn mooshy, not good. When I made it in here, it was perfect and it took about the same time or less than on the stove. 

I know there is a ton you can cook in it but I’m still learning and man, once I get the hang of it…..

I love making things. I love painting, drawing, taking photos, knitting and now I have found that I like sculpting with clay. Ok, this isn’t clay but it’s Salt Dough.

I tried at first recreating this cute little unicorn from a pin I found on Pintrest. It didn’t turn out quite like I had invisioned because well, there is a learning curve and there are things I needed to learn but hadn’t yet, like using armeture. Don’t know what that is? Well, niether did I but I do now. It’s basically the skeleton that holds your figure upright and doesn’t let it smoosh. Like your skeleton. You can kinda see the unicorn smoosh in the pictures a little and it did hold its shape pretty well although, not as well as I would have liked. The other thing I learned was that using Salt Dough for this kind of thing isn’t the right kind of dough/ clay to use. It’s good for somethings but not this. Lesson learned.

So, this little guy turned out so much better. I like him the most. Ssshhh, don’t tell the unicorn.

I also learned from the unicorn, that to smooth out joining pieces use a bit of water on a brush. I also used the end of the brush to make the eyes. When I made this guy I also let the dough get a little firm before I used it, but the more I handled it the softer it became. It’s a learning curve. I’m excited to try my hand at more projects.

Alima is starting to drive! I have let her practice in the parking lot of a strip mall not far from us. She isn’t to bad, like everyone she just needs practice. One day Hal was supposed to drive her to work but he let her drive. He said she wasnt to bad but she needed to pay attention to a few things but other than that she is doing ok at it. I am so excited to see this young lady grow up, for the longest time we werent sure she was going to make it this far! Whew! She was a handful when she was little but now she is a smart, caring helpful and good person. Im happy about who she is becoming. It’s funny so many people want thier kids to be thier friend when they are smallbut the problem that I have seen is that it creates boundry issues and a confusion of who’s role is what, with Alima we didn’t do that and so we don’t have that issue. I’m so happy that as she grows into an adult she and I can actually be friends. I think she’s fun to hang out with and talk to, I like my daughter. She is going to make a great adult.

 So this happened.

We took a day trip to Palm Springs to pick up a couch from new friends that also full time. The Bensons. If you haven’t met them and you problably haven’t, but you should. They are so kind and sweet. Our kids hit it off right away.

While we were there it started raining. We loaded up and headed back. On our way home Hal forgot to get gas. Well, wouldn’t ya know it we ran out and the truck died on the side of the road. This is where it died. 4 hours away from home, or anywhere near it. 1 hour from where we were. 30 miles from gas. Well, crap. So, what did Hal do? Being the hero he is he started walking. I started praying. He was wearing the most uncomfortable shoes and it was raining again. And there he went on the side of the road walking. Then it happens. The sky opens and a rainbow comes. Just as I look out the window I see a Highway Patrol Officer drive by, I see his lights in the distance. I pray he found Hal. He did. He picked him up took him to the gas station and drove him back to us. Thank the Lord.

I have never been really scared before but something happened that moment he started walking away. It made me very afraid. I was worried for Hal. What if some weirdo got him? What if he got hit by a car? What if something happened to us while we waited for him? I didn’t like that feeling at all. I was so relieved when God anwsered my prayer for help.

It’s so cool how you meet people. I don’t think there is one family out there that we have met that we didn’t like. The only people I have met have been so sweet, giving, caring, kind and very generous. All the people we have met we have grown to truly love like family. This is something that happens a lot to people who full time like we do, you truly are a community. You become family. Sure sometimes, just like family you might bicker, not get along with some people, you might not agree with thier views but for the most part I have seen so many people ask for help, have thier Rv caught on fire or in a wreck where they have lost everything and there are so many other things so much smaller than those things that have happened, broke down somewhere, someone locked thier Rv door and couldn’t get it open, but when the Rv community hears it it’s an immediate response to help. There is no balking or not wanting to help. There are so many who help and care for each other.

We have friends who have gone to Panama City twice since the hurricane to help clean up and the results are astounding. I am so grateful to be apart of a community who wants to give back and serve others. It truly is amazing. 

 Hal and I got a wild hair.

We decided to demo our dinette. I was expecting it to be hard and for it total forever. Surprisingly it wasn’t. You would be amazed at the things that hold our rigs together. Simple screws was all it was. Well, maybe a few nails too. I took us about 1 hour total to get that thing out. We thought we were going to loose space because we tore out all the storage but we kinda didn’t. We shoved stuff behind the couch and moved stuff around in the back. These homes are temporary for our stuff, thankfully. It’s working out great though. 

We decided to continue the demo and work on the back a bit. In the back we tore out the drawers that were on the bottom of the entertainment center and then we took the wood off the sides where the drawers were.

Holy cow, so much wasted space but not anymore! We want to take the wood pannels that are under the shelves but for some reason Hal couldn’t. Maybe another day. I’m so glad we did it.

Did you know that the Desert Botanical Garden in Tempe, Az. has a free day?
Well, you’re not alone. I didn’t either untill our new friends the Easterly’s invited us to go with them while they were in town.

 My kids are so great at making friends. I think it helps when the other kids are great too.

Calvin and the Easterly’s boy, Charlie,​ were like 2 peas in a pod. They were stuck like glue to each other all afternoon. It was hilarious to watch them run, jump and explore. Well, unless Calvin was holding my hand, hahaha.
These kids had a blast! Calvin was a mess though, per the usual, because he had to hold my hand all over the place and he doesn’t like to.

Halim loved walking and visiting with Amina and Elijah. It was a sweet time for Halim because he has been very sad that he hasn’t been able to make very many friends his age this time around in our time in Az. He has been able to visit with a few of his friends but he is still kinda lonely.

I think Steven held Carol’s hand almost the whole time we were there. It was so sweet. He really does like talking to grown ups and holding hands. 

I think we were all a little sad when we had to go. We really enjoyed our time together. I look forward to visiting with them again.

Who we met

You can find more info about everyone I mentioned by clicking their name.

Where we went