Thursday, July 31, 2008
Wednesday, July 30, 2008
He finishes in Seattle on the 10th. They will ride into the pacific ocean about noon that day. They will have lunch there and then a picnic later in the day on the beach. They will stay at a church near there and build the next day. Late that day, Dustin will fly in. He and Eric will be exploring in Seattle and then fly here on the 15th. I am very ready to see him. He will actually be here in EP two weeks from Friday :)th
Then, I guess I get to miss JoyAnna. She is going to go ride back to LA with Eric and Dustin. That will give her some time to visit all the other grandparents. She is going to visit my dad and Ann the 7th thru the 12th of August. She will have seen all seven grandparents and one great grandmother in the month of August.
I am glad she gets that opportunity.
Oh, and thankfully, I was wrong on the length of the pool. It is not a 50 meter. It seems longer than 25 yards, but I am not sure what it is. However while swimming it, I am certain it stretched out to be 50 meters. I never thought I would finish.
Now, I must attempt to stand up and put on my real clothes, despite how I would love to stay in my robe. Besides, it will be too hot for my robe before long. Then, I really do need to tidy the house and unpack more boxes. Another work out.
Saturday night it was 4 am when I drifted off. I managed to get to sleep about 3 on Sunday. Monday night, after a trip to walgreens for a 'sleep aid' I did manage to go to sleep around 10:30. I crashed hard into what seemed like several days of the most ridiculous nightmare. One of the kindest men I know had turned into a maniacal kidnapper. At 2:30 I woke up and missed the ending of the dream. That was probably a good thing as it seemed to have no redeeming qualities.
Tonight I tried the 'sleep aid' again. It must have been a one hit wonder as I took it several hours ago and I am still wide awake.
Oh my, I just yawned. Surely that is a good sign. Sleep here I come ( I hope).
Tuesday, July 29, 2008
This was a very different type of class. The teacher stood on the outside. The pool is 50 meters and 5 lanes wide. It is only 5 ft at the deepest. Heated. Nice. The people in the class actually take class and don't chit chat. It was quite interesting. Most of it they did with the dumb bells. My arms really feel it tonight.
I will go again tomorrow.
Monday, July 28, 2008
Today I had to run a few errands. I decided to wear a cute wrap dress as it is so much cooler in a skirt. JoyAnna had walked out side with me to get her phone. I was chatting away to her and plopped down on the seat of the car. While plopping, my dress was not tucked demurely under my rear end as I was taught to sit in a car. Nope, instead it flopped up while I plopped down.
That was when the screaming started. I jumped up as fast as I could, only to have the offending item go with me. A penney has been on the seat and the sun had heated it to a temperature suitable for frying eggs.
I can't see it, but I am quite certain I have a tattoo of good old Abe Lincoln on my upper thigh- WAY up my thigh.
I had thought of a tattoo before, but honestly not considered the 16th president. Leave it to me to do something completely out of the ordinary.
Saturday, July 26, 2008
pray for this family, please
Dean had to go to a meeting this morning. I was looking forward to a weekend of hanging out and maybe going to the parade of homes. There are 2 in the neighborhood we like. We need to unpack some more boxes and I was hoping I could get some help there, too.
Three weeks from yesterday Eric will be home. Eric and Dustin. We are trying to come up with some fun things to do. We can go to Mexico since Dustin's passport came in and he is bringing Eric's. We are thinking about going to Carlsbad caverns, too. We know we will take them to Chico's Tacos, The Little Diner, and probably Capetto's. But, contrary to popular belief, we can't eat all the time.
Tomorrow I think we will try a methodist church. The ladies at the assistance league think we might fit well at the Western Hills Methodist. They have a good youth group and are close to the house. We are going to give it a shot.
Tuesday, July 22, 2008
Eric is going to stay in Seattle for a couple of extra days. That is going to cost some. He will stay in a hostel, but still not free. He wants to go Kayaking. He hasn't worked all summer. He has been really good about money. I put in about 50 a week for him and then a little extra when he needs tires, etc.
I guess it just is all feeling like it is hitting at one time.
But I know we have it so much better than many others. I saw that again today. JoyAnna and I volunteered at the Assistance League today. They have operation School Bell. They clothe and provide school supplies for 3400 low income children in the city of El Paso. They really do it up right. Each child gets uniforms- 3 pairs of pants and 3 polos. They get new shoes, 7 pairs of socks, 6 underwear, and a jacket. I think they get a t-shirt and jeans too. They all get backpacks with schools supplies.
We tagged and boxed uniform pants and polos first off this morning. Then the shoes arrived. JoyAnna said 10,000 pairs. I am not sure how many pairs, but lots and lots. Rooms full of shoes. We had to take them out of the boxes, pull all the paper out, tie the shoes together and tag them with the size- then we stocked the shelves and the remainder went into marked boxes. JoyAnna and her friends Nicole and Tati worked so hard. They hauled all the empty shoe boxes out, they hauled boxes in to us, they hauled packed boxes to the basement to store them. I bet she sleeps really well, but she was eager to go back tomorrow.
She will be going back often, I think. She wants to go back and help with the clothing distribution. She can't really help with the clothes trying on, but she can help them get socks and entertain them til their turn. She'll like that.
So, even though I am stressed by how much we are strapped financially, I know how truly blessed we are.
Monday, July 21, 2008
The restuarant had about 6 tables covered in beautiful blue fabric with gold embroidery. This was completely encased with plastic.
There were shelves around the walls that were filled with all types of middle eastern products such as food and henna for hair and for skin.
We were not sure exactly what to order so we asked the nice young man who waited on us. I think his parents own the place. His dad is from Lybia and mom is from Seria. He suggested something, so we went with that and the gyro platter JoyAnna wanted. The food was ok. JoyAnna loved it. She is already planning to go back.
After breakfast, we went back to the house and did a few things that needed to be done. Dean and JoyAnna went to get some things from the store. We are having major issues with the smell of the laundry. I am not sure if it is the water or what. I thought not having the high humidity would be better for the laundry. I thought I might could leave it in the washer for a couple of hours before it started going bad. wrong. Nothing smells fresh. We piled everything in the laundry room and are rewashing with downy. Hopefully that will help.
JoyAnna is going to fly to NC with a friend's granddaughter. This is going to give her an opportunity to visit a few days with my dad and Ann. JoyAnna is really looking forward to it. She had not met the little one, so we did that on Sunday. We visited at the house and then went to Cappeto's for some amazingly good Italian food.
After dinner, we came home and the three of us chilled in front of the TV and watched the new Monk and the latest episode of Design Star.
I can see how this book has caused controversy.
I can see how it has spoken to many people.
I can see how I have been putting God in a box and expecting Him to conform to my ideas and expectations of Him. I can see how I limit him.
I really like a book that I keep thinking about, one that challenges me. This one really did it.
Saturday, July 19, 2008
I kept thinking how it was a good reminder that even in the midst of the storm, there is still the promise of the rainbow.
Dean had to slow way down and we crawled through Las Cruses.
A few miles out, the rain slowed and we were able to pick up speed. The road wound among the foot hills and the scenery was interesting. There was a lot of green from all the rains we have been having. Several of the feeder roads were flooded in spots as streams of runoff were making there way through the fields in the lower areas.
Suddenly as we went around a corner Dean had to slam on the brakes. The waters were rushing along the base of one of the hills and had started to cover the road. In several places the water was rushing across the road and into the median which looked like a river. Small cars had stopped in the only dry areas - which were actually the only large enough for the 3 cars that had stopped there.
I called 9-1-1 and they said they were on their way.
Dean looked around and said we have to go through it now. He said the way it was rising it was only going to get worse. I started praying and he started driving. I also took some photos which I will post later on.
then it was on to Santa Fe again
Friday, July 18, 2008
A couple hours later, he called back and said "change of plans, we are going to go to Santa Fe. Ya'll get ready."
JoyAnna and I each packed a backpack. We put out plenty of food and water for the dogs - first time for them to spend the night outside - not sure how that is going to go.
By 3:30 we were on the road to Santa Fe in a u-haul.
Life is always exciting around here.
We started out at Chico's Tacos. This place is so popular. Finding a parking place is difficult. The line goes from the register in the back out the door. These are not your typical taco. Not even a taco stand taco from the taco stand we like in Longview. Let me see if I can do it justice in the description. An order consists of three rolled tacos (ever seen those taquitos in the frozen section at the grocery?) in a paper boat. They are swimming (literally) in a tomato based soup stock similar to a taco soup, Next, they are covered with a heaping mound of finely grated cheddar cheese. They serve them with a small plastic fork. I think if you took your own fork that might cut the taco, it would be better. Instead, you sort of have to pick them up and bite them off while dripping a good amount of the soup down your chin and onto any thing below. Their green salsa is wonderful dumped on top, but that adds to the degree of difficulty on consuming them.
They serve these culinary delights with one of Dean's favorite things- crinkle cut fries.
Then, it was on to Gussie's. Gussie was a Mexican lady whose husband left her with a bunch of kids. To make money, she started making and selling tamales. We will have to try the tamales another time. We did experience the 'melt in your mouth' goodness of her cookies and pastries.
A friend told me this morning I am now a true El Pasoan since I have had Chico's and Gussies. Come see us, and we'll take you to experience this. By the way- combined cost for 5 people at both places- 21.00 Gotta love the prices here.
Tuesday, July 15, 2008
Sometimes I just shake my head. I was so comfortable where I was. I had airconditioning, a nice house, just about everyone I love was within 2 hours of me.
I know there is something good going to come of all this.
I am trying to trust God about the house and it selling. I know there is a plan, but believe me, He is not letting me in on it.
Tomorrow we are going to a homeschool family's house. We are going to look at some different curriculum. I sat down and figured the cost of doing Bob Jones whish is what she was doing. There is no way we can do it right now. There are other Christian ones out there. One we found combines history, lit and Bible. The reading are the classics. I think it might be good. We shall see.
If you read Eric's blog, go to the main bike and build site and click on rider blogs. Then go down to Prov- Seattle. Find Brooke's. She has a bunch of photos on hers. Scroll down to the sections sh she says something about her favorite pics - and check out Eric. It is the first one in the section. He looks like he is having so much fun.
I must go to bed now. I am worn out from doing nothing but basking in the heat.
Monday, July 14, 2008
Tonight we went in together to get a shower head so we can bathe the dogs. We walked through the several departments and before long I was starting to cry. My house was so pretty. This place is ok, it is just not pretty. Not home. I still feel like I am in a long stay hotel.
I really am adjuting I guess. I don't cry everyday. I just get a little sad sometime. We went by Dean's partner's house site today. They had poured concrete- the same color as our kitchen cabinets in Longview. Maybe that was what set me off. That house is huge. I mean really, really big. There is a media room, 4 bedrooms, large kitchen, studio, family room, living, dining. I stood in the kitchen space tonight and there is just so much house all around it. Crazy.
Tonight, we got a late start. I had run some errands with Dean, and it was too close to dark for her to go alone. She was going to just take Ranger but Dazzle had a coniption fit. You have never seen one until you see Dazzle have one. She gets so excited.
Dean decided he would go with us and we would just take all three. Not a good idea. I am sure we look like a comedy act when we are out there. We are constantly changing leaders. I decided to jog up a little further with Ranger, but then Dazzle pulls JoyAnna down on the sidewalk. Razzle pulls so hard she was panting and she is usually a good walker.
We think tomorrow we go back to individual miles with them.
Dean said we
Sunday, July 13, 2008
She loves El Paso, I guess. She is so mellow. She lazes in the sun. She rubs up against your leg, she gives kisses. It is really the strangest thing.
Maybe we have the wrong cat?
It was a LOT more enthusiastic than we are accustomed to services. Yep, they even dances. Dean was not enthisiastic about it at all. Tomorrow I will call about another one. They didn't have a website for the one we had planned to attend today. It gives us something to look forward to next week.
Saturday, July 12, 2008
This time I got really scared. I had backed up the last 2 weddings, but hadn't backed up any of the changes I had made to photos. I confess, I was in a panic. I went to the local laptop repair place - gosh, they have everything in El Paso. They told me it would be 69.99 to have them look at it. I was not happy. I decided I would just wait and try something else. I went to Radio Shack and tried to buy a universal adapter. Not one of the three would fit my computer.
By this time, I am crying. I can't imagine what in the world I will do without a computer. It is my contact with the outside world. It is also is the way I do photos.
Dean had been at a meeting earlier, but he was home and offered to take me to best buy to see if we could get an adapter. We had to delay and go by a job site before we could go- what happened to working normal hours? Anyway, we finally made it to Best Buy.
The geek squad checked my computer out. They decided we were right it was the adapters. We were able to find one there. Of course they wanted to do a lot of other things to my computer and charge me a lot. Sure, I probably do need some stuff done to it, but I probably need a new one more than that.
Anyway, thankfully it is working so much better. I did come home and back everything up again just to make sure.
The rest of the day we spent sort of lazing. The afternoon was certainly less stressful than this morning.
Friday, July 11, 2008
Tomorrow he has a 95 mile ride. The wind will probably be bad again, so please pray for him. They have along hard ride tomorrow. The next day is a shorter ride, then on Monday, they have a day off. That will be a good thing. He shoudl get the parts for his computer on Monday. Maybe he will be up and running again on Tuesday.
We went to eat at the Little Diner today in honor of is birthday. JoyAnna had not had their gorditos before, but Eric had. So, we had them today since he couldn't. They were very good. JoyAnna and I had to get off the beach a little bit. These gordito shells are sort of like the outside of a tamale. We both had 1/2 of the shell and ate the stuffing. yummy.
I suppose tomorrow we have to unpack some more. I have been rather lax about it this week
Thursday, July 10, 2008
There he was a bouncing baby boy- 8 lbs 4 oz and about 20 inches long. A boy- not the girl I had figured it would be. That meant I had to come up with a name. I surely couldn't name him Alyson Jade as we had planned.
We were not in the hospital very long at all - not long enough to find a name. I mean it had taken us nearly 9 months to decide on a girl's name. We got lots of advice on naming him. My cousin Steve said he was going to be an athlete, judging by his hands a basketball player, so name him something that couldn't be shortened. He's a coach, he knows these things :)
We finally decided on 2 names- William Eric or Eric Dean. We had to take him home with out a name- only a number 8609. After we got home, we called everyone we knew and had them vote on the names. The winner was Eric Dean.
Now how do you shorten that? Well since Dean had told his brothers we were going to call Allyson Jade "AJ" the shorted Eric Dean to ED. Yeah, Ed. Later on he bacame Big E to some people. So, as hard as we tried it still got changed up.
Anyway, my boy will be 21 years old about 1:10 am.
He is so far away. I called today to give him my new number and to just chit chat with him. He told me all about the things he had gotten in mail drop. Dustin mailed him his tuxedo jersey so he is going to wear it tomorrow for his birthday. Nana B sent him 3 boxes of little debbie cakes and candles and party favors for tomorrow.
I planned a surprise party for him. I messaged one of the girls on the trip and she has helped me. I ordered a cake for him in Valentine Nebraska. JoyAnna and I packed up plates, napkins and party hats in a box along with treat bags for 31 riders. We put in horns, oatmeal cream pies, cookies, blow pops and temporary tattoos. I know it was silly, but I had to do it. The team leader is going to pick up the cake tomorrow. Ashley has promised to take lots of photos of the party for me. She was really sweet about helping me out.
Tomorrow we had planned to go eat at Pelican's - a wonderful steak house- in honor of Eric's birthday. But, since JoyAnna and I are both 'on the beach' we will not be going this week. But, we did think it would be funny.
Wednesday, July 9, 2008
I guess the weather probably has something to do with makng me feel so down. That and Eric turns 21 on Friday and I won't be there. I had so hoped to go to Seattle in August. We had planned a family vacation. We would be there to see him ride into town and ride into the pacific ocean. We would participate in the family and friend work day the next day. Moving here changed everything. I can't believe how expensive it is to move. Two house payments, two electric bills, etc- really, really adds up.
Eric's computer and camera both went out today. Dell is sending him what he needs for the computer. It should be up and running by Tuesday. Thankfully lots of people are taking pics on the trip.
Tuesday, July 8, 2008
However, I was not laughing a few hours later when the monsoons hit.
The sound of pouring rain could be heard over the folk music in the coliseum.
We headed home and there were puddles everywhere- LARGE puddles everywhere. Then we hit the rocks. We decided it must rain rocks instead of hail stones. They were everywhere. All over the roads. Roads were closed.
We came home and watched the news. There were so many streets in our area closed- including the largest intersection by us. Funny thing is we had just driven through there and it was fine. They had to rescue people out of cars. Some of the worst flooding was Dean's new office area. Thankfully, they only have a concrete floor in there at the moment.
They told us July 4 was the turning point. We have seen rain everyday since.
Someone complained about the humidity out here- I just laughed. They have no idea.
Bhutan is a small country between India and China. Ok, I am sure you are thinking what does that have to do with El Paso. Here goes.
In the early 1900s, Texas College of Mines (now UTEP) was going to build a new building. The prsident's wife read National Geographic and suggested that the architecture for the new building should be fashioned after the architecture in Bhutan. That is just what they did. Because of that, El Paso has a close relationship with Bhutan. Sort of a sister country.
The country of Bhutan was invited to be a part of the Smithsonian World Folk Festival this summer. At the conclusion, they came here to El Paso. Tonight we went to a free show of the folk dances and music. Very interesting. Not exactly a typical show, but interesting anyway.
Monday, July 7, 2008
I sent quite an email to customer service. I got an email back saying that if I didn't hear back in 2 days to let them know.
Two days passed, then three . . .four . . .an email came. The idiot who sold us the mattress had written the phone number down wrong- I had included that in my letter, but it took them a few days to figure that out.
Anywho- I called today like I was supposd to.
"Hello, this is Pam, calling you about my mattress."
blah, blah, blah "we want to take care of this as soon as possible, BUT . . . All mattresses are going to have body impressions."
"After less than three weeks?"
"Um, well," dance around the subject "all beds do this."
"Well, I have friends and they have beds. I have asked several of them and they don't have body impressions."
"Well they must have old beds. The old beds were really firm and they don't make body impressions like that."
blah, blah, blah
"The reason you have a hump in the middle of the bed is because no one sleeps there."
I didn't realize a king sized bed was intended for 3 people, but, yeah.
at least 14,000 times he told me that all mattresses have body impressions.
This is where it gets fun. . .
I said "this mattress is just not comfortable."
He said, "yes, it is."
"okay? Well, it is not for me."
"It is kind of like shoes. I might like a pair of shoes, but someone else might think they are uncomfortable. "
"Yeah, but I don't spend over $700 on shoes."
blah, blah, blah
And now it gets even funnier.
I said, 'Ok, all mattresses have body impressions. Let me ask you this. I weigh more than my husband, how come his body impression is deeper than mine?"
"He must sleep heavy."
Needless to say this one shut me up.
"Mrs. Rowell, are you there?"
"Um, yeah. Ok. What are we going to do about my mattress?"
"Well, what do you want to do about it?"
"I would like a mattress that doesn't feel like you are sleeping in a bathtub."
"All mattresses are going to have body indentions. Now, we can upgrade it and you can pay the difference."
"No, I am not paying anymore. Can we just get a mattress without a box spring and maybe get a better mattress."
"You can't get a mattress without a box spring. It is against the law."
"You have to get both."
"But, if you have a platform bed, you don't even need a mattress."
"oh well, you can do it with a platform bed, but you have to sign a release. They come in and inspect us. If they see we sold a mattress without a box spring, they can come inspect your mattress and then they can fine the company and you."
Needless to say, this was quite an interesting conversation.
So, he called back later and we could go look at a Sealy and just get the mattress without having to pay anymore. So, we went over there and were shown the 3 mattresses and then left alone to try them out. So, w decided which one we wanted and told him. Then he came over and said, "now, you know you are going to have body impressions with this."
Sunday, July 6, 2008
We headed out after church. The drive was only about an hour. There are huge expanses of sky and desert and mountains all around in the distance. There are cattle, hawks, roadrunners, and rain :)
There are also some odd rock sculptures. We can't figure them out. Random rocks piled on top of other rocks, fence posts and old dead trees. We made up lots of stories- from Dean's somone had a flat and the others were bored to JoyAnna and I figuring out elaborate schemes of illegal aliens and sneaking across the border (sort of the like the underground railroad stories).
We got to Columbus, NM and there is not a lot there. Ther is the entry to Mexico. Still a little concerned, I asked the border patrol guys if they would go in. They responded no way. Part of it is they are not very popular. Part was there were some murders there earlier in the year. We could see the store we had heard about just across the border. After talking to a couple of bikers, we decided to give it a try.
Walking across the border is literally like walking into a different world. There are beggers and vendors on the street. We made our way to the pink store and fell promptly in love. http://www.thepinkstoremexico.com/ This store is so much fun. They have some of everything that you think of as Mexican. The prices are wonderful. They offerd free drinks while you walked around to shop. We bought 2 really cool candle holders and JoyAnna bought a carved scorprian. She has decided since she lives here she will collect these carved animals. This one was really different. The prices were so much better than the ones she had purchased as gifts earlier.
After we did our shopping there, we visited a few other small shops very close to the border crossing. We bought a vase for 11.00.
When we had been to Mexico on Mission trips, we had purchased Kinder eggs. They are chocolate eggs with a toy inside. When Darlene moved to Germany, we started getting them from Germany. JoyAnna was delighted to find Kinder an hour from El Paso. Thankfully, it is an hour away, so we won't be tempted to go every day .
To get back into the good ol' USA, we just handed them our passports and walked back in.
We decided next time we will try for a Saturday so maybe it will be busier and we can sort of follow the crowd. The owner of the Pink Store said that summers are not nearly as busy. They were very nice.
Overall, it was a rally nice day.
Friday, July 4, 2008
Walking down town is like being in different company. We saw 2 Asians and 1 other non- hispanic. We have decided that shopping there will be the perfct place to look for prom dresses. We saw them for like 40.00
In the afternoon we came home and watched the Design Star Marathon on HGTV, I suggested we have our own Design Star marathon and only be able to use things we have - I was trying to get some stuff unpacked, but alas, it did not work.
After supper, we decided it was time to go look for the best place to view fireworks. JoyAnna really wanted to take the dogs, so we loaded them up. Dean suggsted w go to his partner's house job site and watch from the concret slab. The house is being built way up on the mountain. You can see for miles. Dean thought it would be best to go to the highest slab- which is a bedroom. Walking over the ditches that have been dug to enclose the vent system and climbing up to the slab with no stairs was quite an adventure- especially with 3 dogs.
It was very pretty. Very different view of the fireworks. The wind was blowing, and it was very pleasant. Maybe next year we can watch from the pool :)
Now, JoyAnna and I are watching 1776. That is, if I can stay awake.
Thursday, July 3, 2008
W made it through day one- sort of. I had planned to go to the grocery store before she got up. I ended up doing hings around the house while it was cooler. Tomorrow will be better as we have plenty of groceries that are beach foods.
I got in some exercise today, too. First was the house claning aand moving things around, then a trip to sam's and walmart, followed by walking Ranger around the neighborhood.
I am really missing Eric. I so wish we could go to Seattle to see him, but we just can't afford it. We would drive, but it is two full days of driving. With the gas prices like they are, it is just not going to be a wise decision. Oh well. I had a dream we won some south west passes- no sure how, but it would have been nice :)
Wednesday, July 2, 2008
I know what to do, and I know how to do it. I dont't feel strong enough to do it on my own. I dcided to break down and pay to do south beach online. When Iget up in the morning I am going to the grocery store so I will have healthy food. JoyAnna is going to try to do it with me.
We went to eat pizza tonight. We planned to go to a place to Dean had eaten over near Uncle Jiggs and Aunt Anne'sm but they close for the month of July. We instead went to a place where we had eaten on Sunday. Sunday we had pasta. Tonight we had pizza. Dean has enough pizza to last him for the rest of the week , since we are doing phase one of south beach.
So, anyway, I am back on the beach.
Tuesday, July 1, 2008
Can you believe they want 49.00 to exchange a mattress?
Oh, and get this- the salesperson I talked to today said she only recommends them for guest rooms and children.
I don't look like a kid and the salesman knew it was for the two of us to sleep in.
Gotta love a smooth talking used car salesman- Oh, I mean mattress salesman.