Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Too soon it's over.....

Prior to my family's arrival, this lovely creation was delivered to our doorstep. The entire cake was edible and calorie for calorie, was probably the most expensive birthday cake I have enjoyed. It was magnificent and I highly recommend that you contact 1-800-FLOWERS if you'd like one (no affiliation, just a recommendation).

They also gave me these delightful slippers, all silk and padded. Great for my dainty feet on these tiled floors.

My sisters have excellent taste in clothes, decorating ideas and handbags.....unfortunately I didn't get a pic of the bags......just think large and colorful. But they did take on the house as their project and gave us excellent and creative ideas. As part of the process, they moved furniture......several times until it was right. We even enlisted the strength of Mother.

But all our fun time together ended much too soon. Since they have always lived on the opposite coast, we have spent most of our lives apart. My sisters are very talented successful women whom I have admired from afar and sometimes wished they lived next door. I look forward to seeing them again very soon.

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Party time

When our 16 year old granddaughter (almost 17) tells me that my blog hasn't been updated in awhile, I guess its time to jot a note. Thanks Becca

To begin with, I had a birthday. A major milestone with a card arriving from the government. I have certainly whined and complained enough about this but in reality, I feel very fortunate to able to say that I am 65, in good health and enjoying life immensely and actively with someone very special at my side.

A BIG THANK YOU to our generous kids and their wonderful families for the super gift. It is a raspberry Sony camera and has amazing features and a big screen for viewing. It does so many things but I have no idea what they are.....yet. My first picture happened to be of a subject close at hand.......or foot. And my new toe ring. Who says I'm old.......And guess who came to help me celebrate my birthday.? What a nice present. My mother , still cute and dynamic at a young 87. And my two younger sisters, Sandy and Maureen (who wouldn't be happy if I called her Mugs on the world famous blog). Today we opted for an overview of The Villages via the Trolley tour. It is a relaxing and informational way to explain this place to a visitor. Of course, the real purpose is to convince you that you want to move here and invest in "the lifestyle".

Mother and Sandy waiting for the trolley. The weather was perfect...absolutely perfect. Clear skies, in the 80's with a slight breeze and NO humidity. Some of us did some shopping while others made mental notes on where we might have to return. With the part-timers heading north, the community is decidely quieter and the stores are having some good sales. We ended the day with kabobs on the grill and then a trip down to the square to listen to the band and watch the dancers.

It's been a great birthday party.

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

The house is empty of all creatures great and small.....

Another visit has drawn to a close. The house is quiet and all the toys are put away. We hope that it won't be long before Andy talks them into returning.

This is MaryBeth's reaction to her up close and personal experience with Mr Anole Gecko. I had assumed that he had left the guest room for more spacious quarters but we had no sightings. He finally reappeared right where we had last seen him and startled MB as she was packing. He escaped again but then returned and climbed onto the window. We were able to capture him in a plastic tub and deposit him back into the wild. No doubt he is as relieved as we are to be out of the house.

Sunday, April 6, 2008

Rainy days.....

The forecast was for rain all day....heavy at times. But the morning was just cloudy and in the high 60's and Andy wanted to go swimming. He was very insistant so by 9:15 we were in the golf cart and driving to the pool. The air was cool but the water was warm and it actually was a good idea, despite some earlier misgivings.

The skies remained cloudy and only spotty drizzle so we drove over to Mt Dora, about 30 min , and went for a train ride on an old steam train. The ride was a bit over an hour and we followed the lake shore.

There was no glass in the windows so it was pleasant and made for unrestricted viewing of the summer homes and lush greenery . But it also meant that the smoke and cinders and soot came in . I don't recommend wearing white for this event.

A walk to the back of the train was a rocky affair. It was sort of like being on a boat.Mason thought it was a good place to take a little rest. The rains held off until after we had lunch and then we had torrential downpours the rest of the day.

Saturday, April 5, 2008

They're Baaaaaccckkkk......

Orlando Airport, 12:30 pm. Arrival of Andy , Mason and MaryBeth. How fun is this???

They decided at the last minute and called us the night before. Jon dropped them off and then flew his trip to San Francisco. He will fly down tomorrow night to join them.
It wasn't a hot and sunny day but the rain stopped long enough for us to get a swim in before dinner. They will stay until about Tuesday. We have missed them all so much so this visit is really special . Mason is starting to say some words (he is in speech therapy) and he mimics so many sounds.....he's especially good at imitating the rooster crowing across the way.

We will do more fun things tomorrow and hope for a bit more sun.

Addendum: Mr Anole Gecko has not shown up. I searched the guest room thoroughly, put down the sticky pads (apologizing to him the entire time) and have kept my eyes peeled for something darting about. Obviously he was too smart for my primitive trap.

Friday, April 4, 2008

Guess who came to stay........

Remember Mr Anole Gecko ? He'd been missing for quite awhile and we were sad but our bugs were happy . We'll, I put a new welcome mat out and guess who came calling. I mean literally came calling and made himself at home. Not that he rang the door bell and asked to come in. He just appeared on the wall and then scurried off into the guest room and made himself comfortable. We found him next to the lamp, no doubt reading a good book on mysteries of the insect world.

So, we decided to let him spend the night. Fortunately, we had no other guests so he didn't have to share. But he also doesn't have much in the way of food or drink. Actually, I did see an unsuspecting small spider on the floor so maybe he was able to grab a snack. Just to make sure he didn't want to go for a tour of the rest of the house, I sealed the bottom of the door with a towel. I don't mind these little creatures but not as a surprise in the dark. This morning we tried to round him up and escort him out but he is FAST.! So here is my original gecko trap, loaded up with damp grass and assorted leaves. I hope he's dumb enough to take the bait. I called a friend , a long time Villager to see what other options there were as I'm sure this is a very common occurance. (We left the door open for a bit yesterday). She said the exterminators use the sticky tape but that means a certain death and I'm not into geckocide just yet.

On a happier note. There was a display of StreetRods....a specialized golf the Square the other night. This one was particularly note worthy. The guy retired from UPS recently.

We met our neighbors and then all went out to dinner at the nearby Mallory Country Club. A good time was had by all. We are fortunate to be next to such nice people. Well, actually Roger (3rd from left) can be rather cantankerous but his wife Sue is a gem (2nd from the right).

Stay tuned for the outcome of the Unwelcome Guest.