BEAUTIFUL

BEAUTIFUL

12/31/23

Dreams To Chase

 

Adventure Location:

Decatur, Alabama

Date: December 31, 2023



Another cold morning but it quickly became a beautiful day here in Decatur Alabama. We have some cold coming but we are thrilled to have days like this one.

After dawdling a bit we hit the trail with a windbreaker for the cool and by the time we returned it was too much.




As we get away from the soccer field this is the view we get of where our starting trail splits into four trails to choose from. None of the trails are bad so any one chosen is a good one. We chose left this morning.

Down the trail a little ways we could see these folks fishing Flint Creek for catfish. There were about ten folks in all including a couple of young kids. On our way back we saw one of the folks carrying a nice fish back to the vehicle and into an ice chest.



A nice distance on along the trail we came to this bench where a nice lady and her pup were taking a break. The pup as friendly and well behaved as well.



We got to our turning point at 1.1 miles and headed back just in time to get to give good mornings to several couples out walking the trails also. It was beautiful sunshine at this time on the trail. The walk back to the
Castle was a bit warmer and really nice.

Back at the Castle we took a bit of time and finished this coloring and named it Wandering Water. We hope you enjoy it.



And not least for sure is the late afternoon 30 minute nap we had. WOW that hit the spot perfectly.

We hope everyone has a wonderful new year and has dreams to chase.













12/30/23

Alkali Flats Coloring is finally published

 

Adventure Location:

Decatur, Alabama

Date: December 30, 2023



Another cold day so we stayed inside most of the time. A lot of reading was done on a variety of subjects. Sierra decided to run like nothing is wrong with it. Oh well it will be at the dealer Tuesday for them to diagnose the trouble.

Today we finished Alkali Flats after several days of messing around with formats and color choices and other details for this series of colorings. We hope everyone enjoys the style of this new series of colorings.

Here is Alkali Flats for you.





The electric heater ran nearly continuously until late afternoon when the temp outside got up to about 44f. The OFM just kept on reading and learning new things to enjoy during the rest of his traveling life.

Our personal mail is running late getting to us thanks to the USPS delivery service in this area so we might have a bit of trouble with that on the horizon again. But tomorrow should be a busy day of chores of all sorts to keep the OFM occupied for a change.

Have fun and HAPPY NEW YEAR.

12/29/23

Big Nothing Day

 

Adventure Location:

Decatur, Alabama

Date: December 29, 2023



The biggest excitement today was going to the grocery store this morning and purchasing enough things to get us through the next five days very comfortably.

We are having cold for the OFM weather. Mid to low 30s for lows and mid 40s for highs. Some light sprinkles thrown in for excitement.

Lunch was chicken burger with lunch buddy Jerry and he had been hitting the thrift stores and their half off prices. He has a good time at those places talking to old buddies from his working days.

We left Burger King in a light sprinkle as the next front arrived. The OFM skedaddled on back to the Castle and stuck around waiting for over due Amazon shipments to arrive. They got here in good shape so it worked out OK.

It looks like there is a chance for some light snow during the next few days. It is doubtful the OFM will be doing any walking during slippery weather. We are still in recovery mode from the last fall.

The excitement is null and void in this area these days. So we are hoping to get some art efforts underway tomorrow and stay warm in the Castle.

HAPPY NEW YEAR

12/28/23

Desert West Adult Coloring Book

 

Adventure Location:

Decatur, Alabama

Date: December 28, 2023





This is what the day started like and stayed like that but got a little cooler in the afternoon as a cold front moseyed into the area. The Teams piddled here and there about this and that as we wait to get Sierra to the dealer next Tuesday for a repair.

Our leaving is planned for January 15 for now. With first travels headed for Rockport Tx. Then wherever we choose next.

We spent some time working in a coloring book based on western USA desert scenes. That will likely be a significant challenge in our future. That is about all the fun for the day. We need to do better on the trying to have tooooo much fun don't we.

HAPPY NEW YEAR

12/27/23

Gorilla Spray

 

Adventure Location:

Decatur, Alabama

Date: December 27, 2023



It was a wonderful day for a nice walk that the OFM sometimes calls his heart treatment. It helps keep his heart beating and his blog running. This is the soccer field at the start of the walk and it got our juices flowing for the rest of the two miles.



We have had lots of dying trees fall along the pathways this year and this is one that went down about four days ago. It was different in that normally the tree top gets blown off and then a long while later the trunk snaps off. This one the whole tree went down all together. 




Another unusual event this morning was Flint Creek being covered with ripple going every which way. We guess that the winds were getting moved around by the lack of leaves in the trees and just having a swirling good time.



And speaking of time, Sierra goes to the dealer for repairs Jan 2 at 0900. Hopefully they can do the job right so we can soon head south. January and February are the two cold months here. By mid March things get nice again.



That is what we used on the cracked caulk around a skylight that leaked during the big storm a couple of days ago. We have had very good luck with it. Getting on the roof and wandering around was not on our list of great fun with the OFM balance being as iffy as it is. However it needed to be done for sure. We got by with just a couple of bruises from the transfer from the rear ladder to/from the roof.

Every one relax and have a nice evening and try to have tooooo much fun.

12/26/23

Shafted By Pepboys Repair Shop

 

Adventure Location:

Decatur, Alabama

Date: December 26, 2023



The OFM is still steaming over this event this afternoon. Here are the facts. PepBoys tire and Auto Repair here in Decatur Al received over $300 from the OFM several days ago to repair Sierra. It has not gone well. Sierra has been back to be re repaired a couple of times. Right before Christmas they thought that they had got it done. Today on the way to lunch Sierra went back to its misbehaving ways again. So right after lunch we took Sierra back for another try.

The store manager told the OFM to take it to a dealer, they were through trying. OK Where is my money we paid to get Sierra repaired and Sierra is not fixed? It has been used up trying to fix the truck. We do not feel that is right.

So now we have an appointment with the dealer to repair Sierra so we can hopefully get busy rolling in 2024.

JUST SAY NO TO PEPBOYS shops.



In the meantime everyone have fun while the OFM gets cooled down to join the fun.

12/25/23

Bad Storm This Morning

 

Adventure Location:

Decatur, Alabama

Date: December 25, 2023

An incredibly heavy rain storm pounded us this morning for a couple of hours making minor flooding for the campground. The drainage here is almost adequate for normal rainfall, but not this storm. Anyway here is what the drainage ditches looked like about an hour after the rain quit.



After the rains two shorter walks were taken checking on other flooding for a total of just over 2 miles.

We finished a nice colored pencil coloring and it came out nice we think. Here is Small Home for your viewing pleasure.





After Small Home was finished our new challenge is to try water coloring in regular adult coloring books for colored pencil. We happened to catch a viewing of Mind of Watercolor where the artist was doing just that. WOW let us try that. So we started with our little cheap junk Hobby Lobby watercolors and now we are having fun with watercolors.

Here is a look at where we are at as of today.





Now the OFM Teams have a new way of trying to have tooooo much fun.



12/24/23

Very Busy Day

 

Adventure Location:

Decatur, Alabama

Date: December 24, 2023

An incredibly busy day today kept us running all day. The morning walk was beautiful and cool with bright blue skies. We took a few pictures but the ones from last night were better due to the lighting last evening.

Here is a late evening hunt by an egret with wonderful sky lighting.



We thought it was really spectacular. And just around the bend the OFM caught this reflection of the moon in the shallow water of Flint Creek.





Back to today. We needed a couple of things from the big Walmart so we headed there about 0900 and got in and out in good time without much crowding inside. Back home we went to work on cooking pork chop stoup so we would have ready to eat meals in the freezer. 12 meals are now frozen and ready to eat with a bit of microwave help.

Here is the stoup just before putting it in the freezer.



And to top it all off the OFM got in a thirty minute nap to give him a big smile for the afternoon.

MERRY CHRISTMAS



12/23/23

Situation Report as of 12/23/2023

 

Adventure Location:

Decatur, Alabama

Date: December 23, 2023



Hopefully the OFM life is about to get lined out correctly. There are pictures waiting and an adventure or two to tell about but we need a situation update badly.

The OFM fall injuries are healing right on schedule, slowly in other words.

When we finished Christmas stuff over at Kiddo's home yesterday, the OFM Teams would be out of the picture until school starts again next January 3. So the OFM was thinking of what next. Sierra was started and the same signs of trouble showed up again. We decided that we would stop at the car shop to get in line for next week and a new session of the same repair troubles. BUT as it worked out the mechanic hopped into the diagnostics and found another trouble in the same circuit. The module was available and put into Sierra. It seems that we had two piece trouble and is now fixed (we hope). Sierra is running very well today with all gauge read outs like they were before the troubles started. So today the OFM has re-evaluated his situation. Christmas stuff is over for the year now. His health is steadily improving. And rolling is back in the big picture again. Our rent runs out January 14 of next month. HMMMMMMM Time for some planning again.

For the moment we are planning to be rolled by 01-15-24 aimed at Goose Island State Park near Rockport Texas. That is a minimum four day tow for us.

We hope every one has a wonderful and MERRY CHRISTMAS.

12/22/23

Christmas Presents

 

Adventure Location:

Decatur, Alabama

Date: December 22, 2023



This was Christmas present day for the grands family and the OFM teams. It was a fun time even if the OFM was hurting some from all the activity. We took off for Mexican food in Huntsville where we all continued to have fun.

No exercise walk was taken today but lots of exercise laughing was accomplished.

The OFM got two special gifts. The first one is the yearly calendar with pictures of the family taken through the year scattered through the calendar. It is always wonderful.



The second special gift was a GRANDPA tee shirt to announce to the world that the OFM is Grandpa to these fantastic kids.





And last but far from least the OFM got magnetic backed pictures of Gavin and Piper posing in their gymnastics outfits. It is really neat. However they said I could put them on the Castle's refrigerator door. The only trouble is the Castle's refrigerator door is wood. But you can be sure we will have a solution soon.

In the mean time we will find a temporary display location.





MERRY CHRISTMAS to everyone.

12/21/23

Cooking or Not

Adventure Location:

Decatur, Alabama

Date: December 21, 2023



OK it is time to settle this once and forever. During a discussion a few days ago the OFM commented he needed to get on home and cook his supper. A lady nearby commented that single men never cook and the conversation got rolling.

The OFM never considered himself to be a great cook but he feels like he does plenty of cooking. On top of that most single men prepare a few meals a week in our experience.

So what do our readers say. Does the OFM cook or not?









Most of our home cooked meals are the stoups we make. Since we normally cook the meat as a stir fry then into the pot with the rest of the ingredients. Spices etc are added during the simmering time. When the mix tastes right it is time to eat. Is this cooking or not?



Health Report Time

The OFM is definitely getting better from the bad fall 7 days ago. However there is some significant healing to go yet. We think the original estimate of four weeks minimum to likely be more correct.

Tomorrow is gift exchange time with the grands and their parents. Then it will be time for the OFM to sit back and relax for a few days. MERRY CHRISTMAS 

12/20/23

Warmer Socks For Colder Weather

 

Adventure Location:

Decatur, Alabama

Date: December 20, 2023



That morning air was cool this morning. We got started later this morning on the walking in the beautiful sunshine hoping the OFM could handle it for a bit more distance. He did. We got in about .25 miles more for a little over 1.6 miles without pain. However we did forget the camera. In reality there was not anything new today to excite the camera anyway.

The whole walk was just a great nice time out walking and thinking about what is next in our boring OFM life. According to the life insurance tables we have another 10 years of active life left to live and the OFM Teams have no intention of just letting that time slide by gently. NO SIR, NOT EVEN A HINT OF THAT HAPPENING.

In the meantime we wrapped some Christmas packages in anticipation of the local gathering on Friday.



My son's family has a few more gatherings during the next couple of weeks and will be very busy running around the state.



The OFM has found that he would like some high top socks for winter use, so it was a shopping day. Walmart had a good selection of high top WARMER socks but we did not want that heavy of a sock. It turned out some Dr. Scholls socks were just right for our wants.



They are thinner than the work style sock and feel really good in our 35F weather.



The OFM was feeling a bit rough today and two 45 minute naps during the day did wonders for his energy.

MERRY CHRISTMAS to everyone.

12/19/23

Cold Walking Day

 

Adventure Location:

Decatur, Alabama

Date: December 19, 2023



That morning air was cold this morning. 34F. But we made a nice loop from the Castle to the dumpsters and back around the soccer field and back to the Castle for about 1.4 miles of cold walking.

The very bright sun was screaming down on the area so the OFM took a picture of the sky and sun working us over.



The multi story building demo is going well it appears. Ground level cleanup seems to be in progress.



For a change of pace we went to work on this three small colorings that we were not happy with yet. A break on working on them had been taken so the OFM could do some reading and learning to bring them up to the level he wants them to be for display. Some of the larnning is proving to be important for sure.



If the OFM ever catches on to it we can then call it LEARNING.

The OFM body seems to be recovering a bit so we are starting to hope to start considering a rolling date goal again. It will likely be after January 1 just to stay out of the way of all the “schools out” travelers on the roads.

Every one just sit back, relax, grab a handful of popcorn and have a MERRY CHRISTMAS.





12/18/23

Walking Path Change For Safety

 

Adventure Location:

Decatur, Alabama

Date: December 18, 2023



Beautiful and bright skies held up all day but it was chilly to cold also. We checked the OFM healing and he was doing better so we went for a nice walk. When we exited the back of the campground we immediately noticed that the soccer field fence near our path had been taken down.



We have no idea as to why but there it is. We moved on along the path and got to the spot we used to cut across some natural terrain in the past years. In the past the root system had nearly tripped us several times. So this path section has been replaced with a safer route for an OFM who falls down.



As we continued on our way we came to a nice view with the junction of the Tennessee River and Flint Creek to the right and frequent egret hunting area. It is a pretty spot year round we think.



In a few more minutes we arrived at our new turnaround point where we will normally start back to the Castle.



It gives us an approximately 2.5 mile walk round trip of one hour. We are finding that distance to be a very good one for us nowadays.

This afternoon at the OFFICE we checked on how the coloring contest was going. This is a picture of the current entries.



The OFM is healing but very slowly it seems.

MERRY CHRISTMAS to everyone.





12/17/23

Healing We Hope

 

Adventure Location:

Decatur, Alabama

Date: December 17, 2023



A cool and dreary day has followed us around the area during our adventures.

This is the short term camping area at the front of the camping area.







Then when we went to the back of the main campground here was the view of the frequently really bright soccer field.



We are hoping for some much nicer days in the near future from what the forecasts are saying even if they are cooler.

The bare cupboards in the Castle sent us to the grocery stores for resupply for most of the morning. But now we have food for us to stay for a week or so.

Our research on the style of wounds the OFM has lead us to several medical sites that told us to start warm soaking the bruised areas after the third day of the injury. The OFM injury areas really responded to the soaking this afternoon. The info said to expect at least three weeks of healing time to be needed. So our stay extension seems just right. We will see.

In the meantime we will continue to waste colored pencil lead on colorings like this next one.





Now we are going to work real hard on healing while learning what we need to learn to quit needing healing,

MERRY CHRISTMAS



12/16/23

New Thoughts And Hopes

 

Adventure Location:

Decatur, Alabama

Date: December 16, 2023



Morning 0830

Taking a look at the OFM situation in light of the recent fall and the body damage recovery rate, we renewed our rent for another month last night. Although we can function in a decent fashion while parked here, the OFM team took a vote late last night and voted 100% in favor of more recovery time for the right shoulder damage and left hand damage before putting us on the road again. So we have rent paid until 01-15-2023 now.



EVENING 1915

Most of the day was spent just letting the injuries work on healing. What we found from research is the right hand is a two week healing on old men over 65. But the symptoms for the left hand indicate more like four weeks of healing time. So extending for a month may have been a good thing. It definitely will be better when the Castle is coming along behind us. Driving for now is a chore even without a trailer in tow.

On the other hand the extra time will give the OFM some good time to consider different changes we have been wanting to consider in our lifestyle for our future joy. When we get something that makes sense we will let the whole world know what has been chosen. Quitting rolling is not one of the options under consideration.

In the meantime work really hard at having a MERRY CHRISTMAS.





12/15/23

Splat Explained But Not Justified

 

Adventure Location:

Decatur, Alabama

Date: December 15, 2023



As you know the lunkhead sometimes known as the OFM took a great fall yesterday and damaged himself. Well he is healing slowly so we went to the site of the slight error of his ways to see what we could see. The answer was quickly noticed as you can see in the photo. That root that is now uncovered used to be covered with leaves. It is likely that the OFM wandered into the pile of leaves and trapped his foot under the root while looking at the scenery.



KERSPLAT happened and now the OFM is among the stumbling wounded.



The best we can guess is that this is the scene he was looking at yesterday when the drama started.



Today the damage is retreating some but still very in the way for body use without special silly movements as our lunch buddy called them. But at least we seem to be starting to heal.

To our surprise we were able to make a nice walk this morning of about 2 miles. Along the way we saw this young man fishing in Flint Creek. He did not catch anything to keep but had fun in the sun.



The soccer field was looking good in the sun.



Our left hand is not working just right from the fall injury and typing is a chore. Everyone have a MERRY CHRISTMAS.





12/14/23

The Big Splat

 

Adventure Location:

Decatur, Alabama

Date: December 14, 2023



The big chore this morning for the OFM was to go into Huntsville to get some Christmas presents for some grand kids of his. He had been dreading going into town. It turned out to be a nice experience and was enjoyed.

After a few minutes rest on arrival home he decided to get in a nice photo taking walk along the river on the hike and bike trail.

As we were leaving the campground we noticed lots of Christmas decorations had been added.



Even a roof top Santa was here.



On the way to the trail we spotted these nice fresh roses in the bright sun.



The we started down the trail looking for pictures that we needed to take for our readers to enjoy. About fifteen minutes into the walk the OFM was slowly walking along when he could feel himself falling so he started his normal roll to the ground but his left foot stayed stuck in place and prevented a good roll out. The result was a nasty SPLAT fall.

And the results are not nice. No broken bones or bleeding to the outside of the body but lots of hyper-extensions of joints. Both hands got twisted hyper extensions as well as both shoulders. At least his lower body escaped serious injury. Here is a picture of his left hand little finger in the current resting location instead of next to the rest of the fingers.



So now we will get a nice rest and rehab of joints and body parts again. The OFM has lots of personal experience at this sort of medical treatment. We think this was caused by setting a rolling date to try for. But now we have a great reason for kicking back and just enjoying the MERRY CHRISTMAS season.







12/13/23

Bird Brains?

 

Adventure Location:

Decatur, Alabama

Date: December 13, 2023



The OFM was sitting close to the window next to the do everything table doing computer stuff when a crash bang thud kind of sound happened right next to him. The OFM liked to have left his skin. He glanced to his side quickly and saw a gray bird flying away in a wobbly fashion. Then he noticed the wad of feathers about an inch and a half in diameter stuck on the window.



Apparently the bird slammed into the window for some reason and then found something better to do. We are guessing the feather cluster came from the head and shoulders area of its body.

Sierra ran just fine today during a few errands that were required so we hope it is now repaired again. Again some possible delays may happen so we have softened our goal of leaving to early January. We wonder if we will ever get back in charge of our lives again.

We were able to get a lot done in the Christmas gift planning and shopping by internet done today. That is always a chore. But we consider it a very worthwhile chore and look forward to it each year . It was a continuous busy day today and we feel like we have forgotten something but moving on.

The campground residents have started the Xmas decorating and here is a couple of the beginnings near us.









Before long we expect to have a lot more decorations around the campground as the grand parents get more ready for the grandkids to come by for fun and frolicking.



We got in 2 shorter walks but totaled about 3 miles total for the day. That really feels good to get some time exercising for a change.

At one location there is a little hill to our pathway right that is thick with shrubbery and weeds up to about six feet most of the year. We do not even consider trying to walk through the under growth. But last week it all finally cleared out and this is what it looked like this afternoon.



One heck of a difference a few weeks makes in the fall.

Ok that is about enough, we need to tend to the chores so we can sleep well tonight.

MERRY CHRISTMAS.



12/12/23

Success Maybe With Sierra

 

Adventure Location:

Decatur, Alabama

Date: December 12, 2023



The alarm roared at 0600 just like it was supposed to and the OFM hit the floor getting ready. We needed to be at the auto shop for the next truck repair attempt on the thermo sensor in the engine. Then the next thing was when we went to the fridge for the milk for the OFM's cereal and we remembered we forgot to get some yesterday. So naturally the OFM put water on his cereal and enjoyed it in true combat infantry style that he learned in Nam long ago. Food. EAT. Situation under control.

Anyway we made the shop with time to spare and since we were a work in we ended up waiting for the specialist man to finish his work from yesterday before he went to work on our mess. The short discussion with him made the OFM feel a lot better at the chance for success.

After about twenty minutes of trying things to locate the trouble he reported success as the electrical plug on the vehicle wiring as being faulty and needing replacing. He even was polite enough to tell us the details of his diagnosis. He was very convincing and believable. So about an hour later we had a new plug on the wiring and a running nicely truck again.



We are optimistic that the real trouble is now corrected and Sierra is ready to go rolling.



The weather has been too drizzly to do a decent walk lately-- four days we think-- but this afternoon we walked a bag of trash over to the dumpsters and then continued our walk on down the path until the OFM decided to turn back. Then we meandered through the campground a bit and said a few HOWDIES to folks as we headed back to the Castle. On return we plotted our walk at 1.25 miles of cool bright sunshine to enjoy. It was nice.

Tomorrow is a finish choosing gifts day we hope and get them all bought or ordered.

With a little luck for a change we might sort out our mess of life and get some decent planning about rolling done again again.

In the mean time MERRY CHRISTMAS.