Reading Day

With 16 holes of golf yesterday and another 18 scheduled for tomorrow, today was to be a reading day — a day ‘off’. Started out like that. But not long after breakfast Sue suggested a walk to Walgreens to return yesterday’s movie (Margin Call). So while MaryLou cleaned the inside of her car, the rest of us walked through MountainBrook to Walgreen’s and back. Sandwiches for lunch. Then, a short nap before taking a drive to the Mesa Marketplace. MaryLou bought a shirt, Dave did too, Sue bought some fake Norwex cleaning cloths.

Sue made pizza for supper. After that we watched The Daily Show and Colbert; then we watched 3 episodes of “Friday Night Lights”, a DVD series the Driedgers brought along with them. Ended the night with a bit of NBA and some projections for NFL Wildcard Weekend which begins tomorrow.

Sunny Wednesday

After breakfast Sue and I went for bike rides. We came home and showered. By the time we were done the Driedgers were back from a big (Seniors’ Day) shopping day at Bashas. Marylou made us sandwiches for lunch.

After lunch I worked on my YFC website — still just setting it up. Dave and Sue read. Marylou worked on her blog. The Driedgers went for a bike ride at 3. The Nikkels stayed home.

Basha High School boys basketball teamWe went to Santan Village later in the afternoon and stopped in at the Apple Store and the big wine store. After a bit of shopping we went to check out the Bash High School Basketball game in Chandler. It was fun watching these high school boys play with talent and skill we don’t often see. The Basha Boys team is number one in the state and handled the opponents easily.

After the game we went to the Firehouse Bar for burgers.

Driedger’s Day One in Gold Canyon

Woke up and saw the light was on in the kitchen. Sure enough, there was Marylou sitting at her laptop when I got up. Soon we were all up. Sue made coffee, and later made toast for us all. Dave and I went for a short bike ride out to the swimming pool and back.

At around 10:30 we headed out for a hike up Silly Mountain. Marylou has a sore let and can’t really hike much, so it was a shorter and slower trip than what we’re used to. We got back to our house at noon.

After a great lunch (sandwiches and chips by Sue) we sat around for a bit. Read. Googled stuff. Talked a bit about napping. I booked a 3:00 tee time at Mountain Brook. Got there a bit early and shared a small bucket on the driving range before walking nine holes. Good times. Dave and Sue and Marylou all shot good games. I had fun but my game sucks.

Finished a bit earlier than we did in December so we didn’t really see the beautiful sunset on Superstition on holes 8 and 9. Still, I think we all had fun and I think both Dave and Marylou enjoyed the golf game. I think they liked the course too.

After golf we stopped at Bashas to pick up steaks and caesar mix. When we got home we had a couple of drinks before the Driedgers headed out to Tom Sung’s place on Ironwood to bring him his golf clubs and some other supplies — and to check out his house (where they will be staying later this month). Sue got the potatoes and vegetables going while I blogged. We watched a bit of the Iowa Republican caucus vote on TV.

When the Driedgers get back we’ll barbecue the steaks and have supper. Then we’ll probably sit around and watch a bit of TV and maybe play a game (Smartass — a new game they got for Christmas) before going to bed (early)!

The Driedgers Arrive

First full day back in Arizona. Welcome to 2012. After breakfast I cleaned up the driveway — swept up all the dead leaves.
Then we went uptown to the big Superstition Ranch Market on Apache Trail — full of shoppers looking for great deals. And we joined right in. We walked out with a grocery cart filled to the top with fresh fruits and vegetables — all for $31.00! Amazing.$31 bill for fruit¬†We bought a few more groceries at Bashas. Then home for lunch.

After lunch we got on our bikes and went for a quick cycle to Walgreen’s and back. We were back just before 3pm — that’s when we expected the Driedgers to arrive. Sue gave me a little haircut and we had a shower. Then, at around 4pm, the company arrived. They’d had two little hiccups in their day: first, Dave had locked the keys into the trunk of the car so they only got going at around 9:00. Then, about half an hour south of our place, they were stalled on the road because there had been an accident ahead of them. But all was okay now.

We had a cool beer and watched the sun set. Sue and Marylou went for a walk. Then Sue got supper going and at around 7:30 we had our barbecued chicken and potatoes. After supper we visited a bit. Dave worked on a crossword.

By 10:30 the Driedgers went to bed. We watched a bit of late night TV and then went to bed too.

Happy New Year!

Looks stormy out there. Snow and wind. Sue’s doing laundry and packing. I’m checking to make sure all my computer stuff is packed. Looks like we are leaving Manitoba just at the right time.
This afternoon our kids are taking us to the Winnipeg airport. Our 4:45 WestJet flight will get us to Phoenix at 6:43 — hopefully we’ll catch the second half of the Giants-Cowboys game.

Anyway, it’s been good to see family and friends here at home this Christmas — but I’m quite looking forward to the desert — cycling, hiking, golfing, reading. See you there.

Christmas with the Nikkels

Okay, I haven’t really been updating this blog for quite a while. In fact I’m writing this “after the fact”. We had just over 2 weeks at home — with no internet, no TV, and not much to do. Sue helped to move her mom to a new apartment. We had Christmas at Mart’s with the Penners, and again at our house with the Nikkels. Then Tim moved his business to the new location (although I didn’t really help much because I got sick with a bad cold, my first in many years. Then Tim and Alex hosted us for New Year’s Eve and took us to the airport on New Year’s Day for our flight back to Phoenix. Here are some Christmas photos that Walter took at our house.

Oma & OpaStan & TadeoAlex & Rudy play Christmas tunesAdam & Jake

TadeoAdam & Dadgirls in the kitchentim & rudyAlex & JakeOma & Tadeo

Back on track

After a couple days of cold and rain, today we seemed to get back on track. Sure, the morning still looked cold and wet — although the rain had stopped — but at least the sun was out in the morning. It’s amazing how that makes everything seem more positive.
SlideshowI worked ALL MORNING adding almost 200 photos to the SD camera card for the digital photo frame we’ve bought for my parents for Christmas — lots of photos from our Southeast Asia trip from a couple of years ago, including Japan, and our Buenos Aires photos. It seems these ‘little’ projects always end up consuming the better part of the day.
I also did a small job for Tim at Oak Leaf. I did NOT read my next book. Sue was busy trying to clean the shower door which looks quite stained by hard water — I’ll need to run the softener when we come back in January.
We had lunch. Great (as usual). Last of the chips. Cleaning out the fridge because tomorrow is our last day here until next year.
At 3:00 we were back at Mountain Brook. NOBODY else on the course! But the sun was out for most of the time, and although the course was wet, we didn’t get our feet soaked and had a great time. That doesn’t mean I played great — no, I had some good holes and too many poor ones — lost by 2 strokes on nine holes to Sue and her new clubs. Well, at least I want to blame it on the clubs — it can’t be that I’m just so useless.
When we got back home I reported our intentions to leave for a couple of weeks to our neighbors, Mike and Charlotte, whom we never see otherwise. All good. Sue warmed up the leftover Chinese food from yesterday. We had a gin and tonic, then supper. Watched our comedy channel shows. Then Sue put in one of Jill’s movies, “The Sum of All Fears”. Okay. Sue didn’t really like it and was playing Bridge on her iPad. I dozed off a couple of times. Snacks of grapes and nuts.
Watched a 60 Minutes rerun and some late night TV before heading off to bed — our last night of 2011 here in Gold Canyon.

This is NOT the Arizona we’ve come to know

Another full day of rain. Cold and rain. Lots of rain.
Sue did laundry in the morning. Read a bit. Messed up a sudoku. Ed H from Lorette called and lined up their dates to visit us at the end of January.
After lunch we headed out to Queen Creek. Had a coffee at Starbucks. Bought more socks at Target. Checked out the booze prices at BevMo.
Then we went to Santan Village. Went to Walmart. Went to the Apple Store where Sue played Bridge on her iPad while she waited for her ‘genius’ appointment. The ‘genius’ diagnosed her iPad — and concluded that the ‘problem’ is with the Bridge game app, not the iPad. Now it was dark, after 6pm.
We went to the big Total Wine store and bought a ton of beer and a few bottles of wine. Drove back to Gold Canyon; stopped at the Chinese restaurant on King’s Ranch Road and ordered takeout. Went home and ate half of it. Stashed our booze.
Vinturi aeratorTried out the Vintura Aerator we’d ordered on Amazon (it was sitting where FedEx had dropped it off — in a plastic bag outside our door) with our wine — yep, makes the wine taste better.
Salma HayekAfter supper we watched one of Jill’s movies, Desperado. Lame. Well, except that that Salma Hayek is one hot babe. But it would have been nice if the movie had a plot.
Watched a bit of late night TV and retired to bed.

Blue Monday (Again!)

Rain, rain, go away…
Well, this is something we’re not used to. A solid day of rain and clouds. Really! So we listened to James Taylor all day. In fact, I downloaded the 2007 album “One Man Band”, a live concert recording, and we listened to that.
After breakfast we sat around and read our books. In fact, today we both finished the books we were reading; I finished the David Bergen book and Sue finished the Steve Jobs biography.
We had leftover pizza for lunch. After lunch we tried to watch Charlie Rose on PBS, but it was boring. Rudy did a logo job for Tim at Oak Leaf. We even got out our rain jackets and tried to go for a walk around the block but had to turn around early and hurry home before the rain again came down hard.
JT - one man bandSue made supper: basa fillets with rice. After that we watched Monday Night Football. The game was boring so we switched to The Daily Show for a while. Then, after the game, we watched the 2-hour special “One Man Band” featuring James Taylor, which I had downloaded (took almost all day). The show was great and even though it was only over at 11pm, we managed to stay awake. In fact we watched about half of the CBC National news after the concert.

Sexy Sue turns Sixty

Today is Sue’s 60th. She got a few emails and Facebook messages this morning. And phone calls.
Sue's Birthday BreakfastWe watched our morning CNN news shows and then I went to Basha’s to pick up some breakfast pastries.

Then at 11 the first NFL game of the ‘afternoon’ began. I watched the TV game (Patriots) as well as one on the internet (Minnesota/Detroit).

Rudy tees off Hole #6After lunch we watched a bit more football before going out for our 3pm golf date. Again, Sue’s new clubs seem to be working very well. Although we both scored poorly after decent tee-offs on hole number one, things gradually improved. The afternoon was (once again) perfect for golf — not at all cold.
We finished our game and then went to the Firehouse Bar to finish watching the Green Bay game. We had a couple of beers and ordered a pizza to take home.
We ate our pizza and watched 60 Minutes and the Sunday Night Football game (Giants at Dallas).