Saturday, March 22, 2008

And then there were none.

The house is quiet and just two old people are rattling around in it. Everyone went home. Jeff left on Wednesday and Alex left yesterday. We had a very active time with both of them. Alex has become quite an improved golfer and is learning the rules and etiquette of the game. And also, that some days , no matter what you do, that ball is not going to go where you thought it should. He is fun to golf with and I suspect that in the very near future, he will be out of our league. Here we are heading out for a sunny day in the sun.
Jeff took this picture of us at the spanish gates to the town of St Augustine. One of the most popular activities down here is playing Pickle Ball. We had never heard of it before but a little research indicated it was started in California but a US Senator and his friends. It was named after his dog Pickle who kept running away with the ball. It is played on a court similar to a tennis court but smaller. Usually played as doubles around here, it is a more active game when just two are running around. Alex was familiar with it as he had learned it in school.

These are the paddles which are a bit larger than ping pong paddles and the ball is a wiffle ball but has a rougher surface. It bounces well the first time but then dies rapidly as you swing at it.

Alex and I spent some time hitting the ball in the hot sun. I had planned to take a lesson but I learned quite a bit from Alex so may join the Tuesday group of Inner Circle neighbors. After all the sweating, we headed for the pool to cool off before going to the airport. Here is a view from the tunnels that allow golf carts to traverse the area and avoid the busy roads. Our golf cart is a bit taller due to the larger wheels so we have to be careful and not scrape the top if we get too close to the sides.
In talking to someone at one of the golf courses, I mentioned Alex driving. She related a story she had heard about underage drivers (supposedly you should be 14). She said a grandfather was fined $250 and the young driver received points which would be applied when he got his license at 16. Sounds pretty extreme to me unless they were driving unsafe. But we heeded the warning and decided that Alex should only drive on the transportation paths and we would switch when it required driving on the paths on the sides of the roads. And he drives on the golf course and I walk.......I prefer the exercise and he prefers to drive.
Rainy day around here this afternoon which is spoiling all the fun of the many many visitors this Easter weekend. There was a Spring Craft show down at the square. We wandered around but the crowds were just too much. I think everyone had the same idea of getting there early before the rains.
The guest bed is ready for guests again. Hope to see YOU soon.!!!

Sunday, March 16, 2008


Guess who had his 5th birthday? And made even more special by the spectacular cake his mom made. Jon also had a birthday recently and turned a young 38. Realizing of course that we are much too young to have children as old as they are........
Jeff came to visit and it has been just great having him. We opted to take a day off from golf and drive over to the East coast and toured St Augustine. This is a partial view of the Castillo de San Marcos built in 1695 by the Spanish. St Augustine is the first permanent European settlement in the continental U.S. Established in 1565, there is a lot of history packed into a relatively small area, easily walkable.

It was a warm day and we all got a bit too much sun. We drove over to the beach for some cooler air . There are very few sea shells on this part of the coast but the sand is like white powder.

The azaleas are in full bloom here in the south. Hibiscus were also prominent in many different colors. Maybe I need one of those in the yard.

Becca and I had a nice chat via text messaging this morning. She left very early this morning from Denver and was on a lay over in Dulles waiting with her Spanish class for the flight to Spain. What a wonderful exciting opportunity for her. Alex arrives tomorrow for the week. He is so nice to have around and we look forward to sharing the golf course and ping pong table with him. We may even try pickle ball (more on that sport in a later edition).

Last week, to celebrate Jon's birthday, I played 27 holes of golf in one day!!! I played 9 holes on the Executive course with the Ladies of Inner Circle Group and then played 18 on the Havana Championship course with Paul and Jeff. I am tooting my horn very loudly as I took the low score with the ladies and then managed a 97 on the 18. That is the first time I have ever shot below 100 and I am so excited. I just hope I can repeat whatever I did. We are playing 9 holes later today.

Weather is getting a bit warmer and I had the A/C on today. Jeff went for a run and came back drenched and very hot. And the envy of all he passed.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Picture Free Blog

Yes, we have no pictures. I tried to get pictures of the exciting night time launch of the space shuttle. It had been described in glowing terms by other Villagers . So we set the alarm for 2:15 AM. We walked out back at the appropriate time and we could monitor the lift off being broadcast live from the local station. The space ship lifted off and we looked to the sky. Nothing, .....we waited and still Nothing....we watched it on the TV but still nothing in the sky....did they take a wrong turn? And then we realized that the cloud cover was just too thick. We thought it was more broken up and were quite disappointed.....especially considering the hour. It was hard to go back to sleep.

Today we visited with a local Doctor. We made the appt just to get acquainted with someone, Just In Case. She seemed very nice, very thorough, very down to earth and did her residency at Yale . We'll have some lab tests , do a follow-up visit and then hope that we don't need to see her for a year or so.

Jeff called a bit ago to tell us that he is arriving tomorrow for his first visit to The Villages. We are very excited. He is an excellent golfer and we have reserved tee times for Thurs and Friday . Tracy is traveling for work and can't make this trip but we hope she can come soon.
OOPS !!!! There is a picture on this blog. This is a favorite picture of Jeff. I will post more typical ones when he arrives.

Saturday, March 8, 2008


We should all start our day with a good breakfast. This is one of my favorites.
Today I went for my morning walk even tho the wind was blowing at sub-hurricane force. There were very few brave souls out there and no small dogs. I think I should get extra credit for the effort I expended. We had a golf date planned for noon but wisely cancelled. Paul came home yesterday from Miami with a head cold and the wind and cool weather would not have helped.

I am not a gardener. I did not inherit the gene from my mother altho my sisters did. I do not miss it. I do not like being surprised by all creatures great and small. I do not like to get bitten by mysterious invisible things. I do not like my sweat mixed with dirt. But, I do like the fruits of someone else's labor (sort of like grandchildren). Eventually we will have to revise and add to the landscaping that is here. For now , I hope to put in some pots with assorted plantings. I did have good luck with gardening on that scale in both Ct and Pa. I guess I'm more in control of all the elements. But I have no idea what works down here so spent some time at the bookstore. This book seemed to have the most comprehensive and easy to understand guidelines.
Maybe some topiaries by the front door or the garages.

I like red in and on anything.
The house is moving along very slowly. I need to live in a space before I know what to change. I have looked at furniture stores but nothing is very intriguing.

We have a rather large nook in the kitchen designed for a table. But its only 3 steps to the dining area and another five steps to the table on the lanai, so how many tables does one small house need? But I do need a desk and I can always use more storage so we had some drawings made up. This will be made using the same cabinetry as the kitchen. I would like granite but don't know if we can come reasonably close on the match. ( My apologies for the quality of the picture but I couldn't cut and paste this from the pdf so I took a picture.)

This is the space it will go it. It faces the front of the house. Even thought we are far from settled, we do have a guest room already for you. Please drop by and stay awhile.

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Happy Birthday Marybeth

Today MB as we tend to refer to her , became a year older. She is still young but said she feels old. I guess it's all relative. We are delighted that she is a part of our family. She is very special to us and we will miss our frequent times together now that we are 1000 miles apart.
I'm trying to download some pictures but Blogger is not cooperating.
Rainy day down here. But still warm and pleasant. The house is not coming together very fast. Mostly it's due to a shortage of places to put things. I spent some time at the design center that coordinates the cabinetry, flooring, appliances etc. I will have a desk and more cabinets built into the kitchen area. That will help significantly. I wish someone would just come in and decorate and I'd be done. I"m tired of decisions.
My golf game took a sudden turn for the better......surprise, surprise. And just when I needed it as I was playing with the Inner Circle Ladie's Group.
Paul is in Miami for the week and anxious to be back home.
Spring is starting to arrive. I noticed that many of the trees are getting their leaves back and the camelias are in bloom. It's not like the north where you really notice these things. It seems more subtle , especially since there is always something blooming down here. I'm all confused about the plants and trees . I don't know what they are called, how they grow or what they need. The landscaping around the house just seems to take care of itself for now. Eventually, we will have it revised and pick things that we like.
Enough chatter......
Love to Marybeth and wishes for a GREAT year.