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Thursday, November 10, 2011

Tequila and Guachimontones

Circular pyramid in Guachimontones

Cathedral in Tepic, Mexico

Trumpet player in Tequila, Mexico
Jim and I bit the bullet and took a two day road trip WITHOUT THE KIDS to Tequila, Mexico... home of Don Jose, Rubio, Don Kiko and many others. It's a clean town where the garbage trucks come down the cobblestone streets blaring Vivaldi's Four Seasons. Hotels are affordable at around $30 a night and the sweet/pungent odor of tequila is light and delicious in the air. We arrived too late to do a factory tour and 10am sounded way too dangerous to take one, so we bought a nice bottle of Anejo and called it good enough.

Music students posing for us in Tequila, Mexico
From darling Tequila, we boogied down to Teuchitlan where we hiked the Guachimontones ruins, 3000 years old and the only circular pyramids known. The view was incredible and the ancient civilization left behind many clues about who they were and how they lived.

One note - we paid about $60 USD on the toll road from Mazatlan. Nice road, but good grief! We took the scenic free roads all the way back. granted, it was a longer drive but we weren't eager to spend more on tolls than on gas.

Monday, November 7, 2011

BAILEY (1997 - 2011)

In memory of the best dog we have ever known.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Fall Equinox

With the late season, we were able to enjoy Olathe Sweet Corn during our Colorado visit. Unfortunately with the Rocky Ford cantaloupe scare, we didn't get any fresh cantaloupe.
Only a snippet of the colors we witnessed.

I was super sensitive this trip. I'm sure it mostly stems from my mother's 12 year anniversary of her death. She died here in Delta and we were visiting the exact same day. She had pancreatic cancer and was diagnosed 8/23/1999. A month later, she died. It was right before Carolyne was born and I will never forget it.
My mother, Carol.
Colorado's beauty and farewell to summer during the fall is unforgettable. The colors are vivid and vibrant. A leaping or jump - last call to remembrance.

I can't say that we will move there again. Too expensive and our lives have changed so much. But I am so appreciative of the time we shared there.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011


Visiting Kendra was a definite plus of going to Colorado. This is Tim's half sister - long story. Kendra has been a part of my family for almost 13 years. She babysat the kids years ago and along with her brother Jeff, parents Ken and Laurie, and step-brother Nick... well let's just say, we have a very colorful dysfunctional family Christmas when we get together. Now that everyone is spread apart, those days seem like eons ago.

Carolyne, Kendra & Tim

Kendra, recently married to Jeremy, is happily living in Montrose and getting ready to move into their new house. She is beautiful and smart and we love her.
Carolyne, Kendra, Tim & Jeremy

One of my favorite spots on the drive between Delores and Telluride... minus the wires.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Arizona and Western Slope of Colorado

After not visiting my sister for over 3 years in Colorado, it was a welcome sight to drive the 11 hours from Lake Havasu City, AZ to Montrose, Delta and Cedaredge, Colorado. The colors were just beginning to change and because the season was late we were able to partake in the Olathe Sweet Corn that is famous in the small town from which my husband graduated from high school.
Sam in background, Carolyne and center, Ben.

Tim with Grandpa's toy
Gabe, Ben and Sam

My friend, Debbie, and her beloved project, Bella

I love Colorado. I wish we still had a home there. Visiting with my sister, her husband and their boys just made me long for the mountains even more. The golden leaves, snow peaked mountaintops and crisp air was welcome respite after a long and sweaty summer waiting it out in Mazatlan.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Arizona Photos

The Lake Havasu weather has been spectacular - cool in the morning and dry heat in the afternoon. Beats the heck out of Mazatlan in the summertime.
The neighborhood cat-eating coyote turned and ran as soon as I took the camera out.

Here I am surrounded by Hams

Reiner Schick - fellow Ham and sailor

Dad at The London Bridge - this one didn't fall down, but was moved here stone by stone.

A break from the cruising life is wonderful to me. I am really enjoying my time with Dad. He's spoiled us rotten - taken us to lunch on numerous occasions. And for my birthday yesterday he took us all to Laughlin, NV to play slot machines and eat. Shopping, too.
Our friend, Gwen. She took me to The Refuge for a girl's night out.

Dick helping us check out our refurbished Icom 710 Marine and Ham radio.

Me sitting in front of London Bridge in my new $3 hat I bought at JC Penney's SALE! 
Run for it is right! This Stinkster was making haste on the beach.
Lake Havasu is really beautiful this time of year. Dad and I take walks every morning at the lake.
A kayaking paradise

Mexican Bird of Paradise

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

How To Sail Your Boat Under That Low Bridge

My father-in-law forwarded this video to me and my mouth is still hanging open in disbelief.

Monday, September 19, 2011


As a cruiser, life is fairly spontaneous - only some things can be planned. Weather is the biggest factor. You have no control over the weather. But another factor is planning a trip to visit relatives in the USA and placing orders for ALL the stuff you think you need to bring back with you. In our case: schoolbooks, SSB/HAM radio, antennas, outboard motor parts, cables, wires, boat doodads and this/that/&theother. This makes it hard on family and friends that want to see you when you are in the states, but have to schedule or plan their visits around your schedule - which is loosely knitted at best.

We haven't seen Jeff in a few years. He is my family by marriage-and-divorce in a strange and most dysfunctional way, but he could be my son. He fits in like he belongs with us. I just love this kid. (You know you're old when you refer to a 27 year old as a kid.)

Jeff is Tim's much older 1/2 brother. Carolyne's, too, since they claim each other. It's a long story and very confusing, but it has a happy ending. He works and lives in Montana and at very short notice he flew to Las Vegas and drove down to Havasu in a rental car. Dad set Tim and Jeff up in his motorhome next to the house so they would have late nights to catch up and goof off.

Now that there's Facebook, I don't have to be the go-between anymore with the 2 boys. They have their own relationship established together and can carry on without me. But being a part of Jeff's life is so rewarding. He is a fantastic human being and I just love him dearly. I know that his visit meant the world to both my kids. Jeff, if you read this you don't have any idea how much it means that you made such an effort to come be with us.

In a few days the kids and I will head to Colorado and visit Kendra, Tim's 1/2 sister... and Carolyne's, too, since they claim each other.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Arizona Bound

The kids and I kissed Jim goodbye and headed off last Wednesday in the car bound north towards Arizona. We didn't get off as early as I would have liked because first Carolyne had to run back to the boat to fetch shoes. Then Tim. I couldn't be mad at them because it is so comical to me to think that my children are more comfortable either barefoot or in flip flops. Shoes are considered "dress up clothes".

The air in Mazatlan was like a warm armpit at 7 in the morning. I was eager to get the car running and turn on the AC. 9 hours later I had Tim drive for a bit so that I could take a power nap. We pulled into a nice motel in Santa Ana, just north of Hermosillo past dark... not my intention to drive at night but I couldn't coax the sun to stay up any longer.  $35US for 2 queen beds and fresh accommodations.

We crossed the border the next morning painlessly and our first indication of being back in the USA was my wish come true - IHOP. Do you know how long it's been since I stepped into an IHOP?? It was a magical breakfast with oily sausage links and puffy buttermilk pancakes covered in thick blueberry syrup and whipped cream. And I knew that it really must be the International House of Pancakes because everyone in the restaurant was speaking Spanish. Our waitress eventually resorted to Spanish with us, too, when she realized we were not monolinguals.

The IHOP was a warm welcome back home. And the weather in Arizona? Not as hot and sweaty as Mazatlan. Sunny, breezy and very dry. And the kids? A smooth transition back to the land of plenty.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Mazatlan Sneaky Street and Stills

My first pocket camera
I have never taken a photography class. And though I bought my first Kodak Instamatic 101 camera when I was 10 years old with my $25 bingo winnings, I really have never known what I was doing when it came to composition, symmetry and aesthetics.

Taking people pics is hard. People move too much. Just as you get the camera into focus, a pedestrian walks in front of the lens. You re-focus, zoom in and your subject reaches up and picks his nose, or turns his body away or gives you the stink eye while wagging his finger - international sign for, "Hey Sneaky - I will curse your children and your grandchildren and their children if you don't stop taking pictures of me."

Of course, you could always ask. "Permiso, por favor, a tomar su foto?" or "Puedo tomar su foto?" I don't know that this is a perfect translation, but it gets the message across well enough. Half the time the answer is yes. Then the subject turns away, hides her face, or stands stiff and smiles ever so fakey-like. The coveted natural shot is ruined.

Here are a few shots taken downtown yesterday. The historical cathedral in Mazatlan draws locals and tourists alike. The Mercado is only a hop, skip & a jump away. It was hot as Hades. Hardly any of my 'people' shots turned out. I really need a super zoomy lens or more cooperative subjects.
Common plaza scene. (I had Carolyne stand to the side and  I pretended I was taking a photo of her.)

Street art.

The pigeon was more cooperative than most people.


Someone's beautiful house just a block or two from the cathedral.

Preparing for Independence Day (Sept. 15-16)

Street vendor. (See how sneaky I am? )


Shoe shine guy. (I tried to be discreet, but my angle was all wrong and that pole was in the way ans some lady was shouting either at her kid or at me. I had to hurry and the shoe shine guy looked up at the yelling lady just as I snapped the photo.)

Tourist attraction - Sr. Frog's. (Ladies gave me a wide berth when they saw the camera.)