Posts Tagged With: friends

WHAT’S SPECIAL ABOUT A BIRTHDAY PARTY?

dsc08584-copyMy friend? No, a friend to everybody, Carol Flemming, held a bash at her house for her 75th birthday party. “My kids insisted on this party,” she told me. I totally understand that. The “kids” think you are on your last legs and counting when you reach 75.

dsc08596-copyI met Carol when I wrote features for the Calaveras Enterprise. It was 1982 and I featured her costume business, a unique and wonderfully creative business that is still going. Marti Oaks, right, with her son, worked for Carol and at one time lived in my Murphys house.

dsc08604-copyPat Patterson, right, also worked costume design. It was fun catching up with old friends.

dsc08629-copyI also got to meet Carol’s daughter, Liz, whom I’d never met before, along with her daughter, whose name I didn’t get.

dsc08599-copyCarol’s son Beau barbecued chicken and tri-tip. He, like his mom is a good cook. I’d met him when Carol had a restaurant in Arnold, the Froggy Diner. There is always cooking or a side business in Carol’s life.dsc08583-copyThere were her friends and neighbors of all ages. Names seem to float out of my brain. This woman, like me, is finding acreage hard to keep up and looking to downsize. I hear that more and more from people I know.

dsc08595-copyDale said she didn’t take good pictures, but I do. I thought her laugh made her beautiful. It turned out, she knows my brother Clark.

dsc08594-copyI finally got this little girl to smile for my picture. But she kept a protective closeness to her parents.

dsc08592-copyMy brother Clark was once a neighbor of Carol’s in Burson. This man remembered he and Clark fixing a bridge that went out, before CalTrans was even called.

dsc08606-copyThis woman too, talked to me at length of all the favors that Clark does for the neighbors. He helped with projects after her husband died, making her ever grateful.

dsc08614-copyThis couple also know Clark and talked about him and the neighborhood, and things they’ve done together.

dsc08609-copyAnother daughter, Mona and another grand daughter, I’d never met.

dsc08620-copyAnd, Carol’s daughter China Rose with her two girls. She also has two sons. I hadn’t seen China in over 17 years.

dsc08621-copyThe baby was determined to sleep, but China wanted her to stay awake for the long ride back to Santa Cruz. I remember those days.

dsc08615-copyCarol joined the kids in the pool for a cooling dunk. I love it when you get to enjoy your own party.

dsc08613-copyThis smart woman is a former daughter-in-law-still friends of the family. She gave me good advice about AirBnB…ideas have been floating through my brain all day.

dsc08602-copyThe woman in red, Cindy, I think, is an artist. I always complain I never have time to paint or create.  Her very good advice, “Make it your priority, first thing in the morning. Everything else can wait.”

dsc08612-copyA birthday surprise for Carol, her brother Willie flew in from Hawaii.

dsc08626-copyI tried to get a picture of everyone. And, I missed Phil, her husband, who was busy, busy, busy, tending the bar and keeping people happy. There is a pattern, here.

dsc08593-copyKids, babies, teens, middle agers, old folks…

You know what was different about this party?  I saw no one with their head down, texting and playing with their phone or messages or…whatever they do. That, my friends, is what was special about this birthday party. A rarity. And great fun.

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Sandy And Charlie Brown – Bremerton, Washington

Mary is no longer available for RV traveling, but we remain good friends.
Because we have 4,000+ postings, I’ve invited her to continue posting entries on this blog.
I’m currently in my 21st year of full-time RVing and my lifestyle is changing, For more info click Here

The motorhome is parked at Fort Townsend State Park in Port Townsend, Washington. I’ll be departing from here this coming Sunday.

 

(Note: I’m currently a little discombobulated right now. My normal mode is to blog what I experienced yesterday. Right now, I’m several blogs behind my experiences. I expect to be back in my normal mode within a couple of weeks.)

 

A week ago Monday I arrived in Bremerton, Washington for what ended up to be a four-day visit. It allowed me to visit with my friends, Sandy and Charlie Brown, three different times while there. I met Sandy and her husband Ted in Yuma, Arizona back in the days when they were RVing. The below photo was taken in December, 2006. Ted passed away in 2014…

 

 

 

As always you may left click upon an image to see an enlarged view and then click once again to see an even larger view…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I met Charlie Brown when he was adopted by Ted and Sandy in January, 2007…

 

 

 

 

Fast forward to 2016. Sandy (no last name being provided because she is now a single woman), came to visit me in the motorhome upon my arrival…

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Sandy drove me around town to see some of the local attractions. While we were out, Charlie Brown guarded her car. Charlie is now nine years old…

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Sandy was 70 years and two-days old when I took this photo. Looking good for an older lady!  :)…

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Thanks for a nice visit Sandy.

 

 

 

 

I hope you enjoyed the photos!

Yesterday was cloudy/sunny and 73 degrees. Forecast for today is cloudy with a shower and 66 degrees.

Enjoying nice weather is another joy in the life of a full-time RVer!

The red dot on the below map shows my approximate location in the State of Washington. You may double left-click the map to make it larger…

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Enjoying 65-75 degree temperatures with low humidity most of the year is a primary joy in the RVing lifestyle!

“Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance you must keep moving”…Albert Einstein

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My current travel rig is a 2006 Fleetwood 26′ Class A Motorhome and a towed 1986 Ford Bronco II, Eddie Bauer Model. This photo was taken in the desert at Slab City near Niland, California…

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On October 27, 2012, I created a two-minute video titled America The Beautiful. The music America The Beautiful is by Christopher W. French. The photos, which I randomly selected, are from the states of Arizona, California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Mississippi, Montana, New Mexico, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Texas, Tennessee, Washington and West Virginia (not shown in that order)…are mine. Yup, That’s me standing in front of the Post Office in Luckenbach, Texas…Y’all!

Click this link to start the video. Make sure you have your speakers turned on and go to full screen asap.
http://youtu.be/FfZUzEB4rM8

If you would like to see my YouTube videos, click this link… http://www.youtube.com/user/JimJ1579/videos

There are more than 700 photo albums in my Picasa Web Albums File. To gain access, you simply have to click this link… https://picasaweb.google.com/jimjrver

If you have not checked out my Ramblin Man’s Photos Blog, you can do so by clicking this link…http://ramblinmanphotos.wordpress.com/

For more information about my books, click this link:
http://www.lulu.com/spotlight/panamaorbust

All original works copyrighted – Jim Jaillet 2016

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WICKED SISTERS

DSC08239 (Copy)I attended a Calaveras County Arts Co. Music In The Parks event in Arnold. On the way I stopped to visit with my old friend Paul Moeller. He was tired after a day at Big Trees State Park with his caretaker, Nellie. She is a marvelous woman who makes his end-of-life issues tolerable. He talks about hopefully passing on to meet his Martha in heaven-soon. It saddens me but I’m aware of how lucky he is to have so many caring people in his life. He is a legend in our community.

DSC08241 (Copy)Cedar Center Businesses in Arnold built a stage for events, starting with the Arts Council 25 years ago. Cathy Mazzafaro is our current Director, a popular, personable and capable replacement for retiring Mary Jane Genochio.  The only funding for these free concerts comes from donations. I call it small town amazing.

DSC08244 (Copy)The Wicked Sisters is a group of teachers who turned to music. Originally four women, they have a couple of stand-ins for when someone can’t make an event. All of them sing.

DSC08243 (Copy)An amazing variety of instruments are used. A banjo, ukulele, several different guitars, a mandolin, different percussion instruments, tambourine, a shaker.

DSC08249 (Copy)Musical numbers varied from “Summertime,” to rock classics and radio pop tunes, country and folk.  Interesting diversity, such as “My Ex’s Commin’ Back To Me”, and a couple really challenging pieces-I didn’t remember the titles but the music still strums through my mind.

DSC08245 (Copy)I met a couple of friends at the concert, but I made a new friend as well. Her owner told me she listened to everything I said.  (Of course, I told her how pretty and well-behaved she was.)

 

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GOODBYE CALIFORNIA.

DSC08213 (Copy)My son Ken, in the bright blue t-shirt, hosted a goodbye California party for family, friends and neighbors Saturday. It has been nice having he and Laurie in Calaveras County, but his job required him to move to Reno, Nevada.

DSC08192 (Copy)What are the odds that when Ken bought the house on Vista Del Lago three years ago, he would find this man, Lynn Breitzman a neighbor on the same street. He, and his wife Sandy went to High School with Ken in Fremont. Lynn’s sister, Dawn, was a close chum of my oldest daughter Kristanne, as well.

DSC08205 (Copy)This couple, Jeff and Debbie Machado also live on Vista Del Lago. Debbie is Sandy Breitzman’s sister, who attended high school  in Fremont with Ken, Doug and Kristanne.

DSC08193 (Copy)Debbie and Sandie with Laurie, kind of enjoying my bewildered looks at the connections.

DSC08195 (Copy)But, wait, there’s more. Jeff, it turns out, used to be a member of  Laurie’s brother’s band. Mike didn’t know Jeff lived in the neighborhood until they ran into  each other at Laurie and Ken’s.

DSC08209 (Copy)Mike and his wife Ramona, live in Lodi where he, Laurie, and her sisters went to High School.

DSC08203 (Copy) Ken’s buddy Dave Pinkett,  attended High School in Fremont with those mentioned but he remain a Fremont resident.  Daughter Kristanne was Dave’s date for his  High School Senior Ball.

DSC08201 (Copy)We had the biggest driveway in the neighborhood and kids with paper routes folded papers on our driveway.  Doug, didn’t smoke and he policed the driveway and forbade anyone to sneak a cig. None of the paper-boys were allowed to smoke at home, either.

DSC08204 (Copy)George and I were the first of my family to move to Calaveras County in 1978. Followed by Clark who settled near Camanche in Burson.

DSC08199 (Copy)Followed by Brother Bill, who lives about a mile from Ken and Laurie in Rancho Calaveras.

DSC08186 (Copy)My grandson, Stewart, missed all the coincidental tales and laughter since he is involved with his girlfriend Aly. They met on the job where they both work as writing tutors for college students. He won’t be making many trips to Calaveras County now that his parents will move. Boo, hoo, for me. I will really miss them all.

DSC08207 (Copy)  Laurie’s sister Michelle…

DSC08208 (Copy)…and her husband, Wayne, live about 4 miles down Highway 26 from Vista Del Lago.

DSC08194 (Copy)Laurie, too, has lifelong high school friends. This is Diane and Randy Cantoulupis

DSC08189 (Copy)Two sister’s-in-law, Ramona and Theresa.

DSC08206 (Copy)I don’t know all of their neighbors and friends.

DSC08188 (Copy)It was a fun day, as people spread out into the yard.

DSC08190 (Copy)I talked to this woman about her impending move to Oregon. I know Laurie told me everyone’s name, I may even have marked names down-somewhere.

DSC08212 (Copy)I have an excuse. I’m still a bit disoriented. Out of my sling for hours each day since June 2nd.

DSC08202 (Copy)The food from a local Mexican restaurant-a standout. Laurie and Ken may be saying goodbye to California, but moving means you end up with a new crop of friends and neighbors. And, by chance, you might meet people you knew in a former life. Could it happen again?

 

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CAN’T COMPLAIN ABOUT THE RAIN.

DSC07843 (Copy)Spring is trying to spring, but the weather turns from warm with spots of sunshine to cold to windy to rainy to stormy to gale force downpours,  all within a short time. The last two days were wet and miserable. I feel guilty when I complain.

DSC07858 (Copy)Whenever something blooms, I take a picture before the rain washes it away. Forsythia is one of three plants I have that bloom on the branches before it leafs out.

DSC07859 (Copy)That is, excluding the fruit trees, like this wild Indian peach.

DSC07850 (Copy)Dancing between the drops, I caught Karen, the Pied Piper with the chickens. They adore her and vice versa. They love getting out and wallowing in the green, grass. I love the green, too.

DSC07847 (Copy)Paul was back in the hospital. Now he is in a convalescent home. Living is sometimes an uphill battle.

DSC07851 (Copy)Pam, Wanda, John and I with our CCTV manager, Ed Lark had an important board meeting over the studio. Hopefully we’ll get it transferred to new owners by the end of the year, freeing us to do things we like better. None of us produce television shows anymore. We are just cogs in the management wheel.

DSC07852 (Copy)These last two years, we’ve taken to having dinner meetings. It makes things pleasantly social. John told us a great history about Hazel Fischer, a teacher who taught “everybody” in the old days, in a one room school-house. There are many stories about her quirky personality-some he claims are untrue. John is an “old-timer” to this area and he knew Miss Fischer.

DSC07857 (Copy)I read in my local paper that the state is subsidizing low flush toilets. They’ll reimburse you $100 for each toilet. So, I managed to put one in for me and one for my rental. I had already put in a low flush several years ago, but the new ones are better. It boggles the brain that they work. The engineering is so smart. I also have on demand water heaters in both houses. But the gas one needed a new computer board, which the company mailed to me free by Fed Ex. In all this cold, it was nice to have hot water again. The rain kept me inside long enough to read two days worth of newspapers and put a dent in my taxes. No, I can’t complain about the rain.

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FREE CHRISTMAS DINNER

DSC07374 (Copy)To have lush choices about how we will spend our Christmas week is a gift that reminds me how fortunate I am to be in a community that treasures neighbors, friendship and family. I planned to take a friend to lunch Christmas Eve day, but he was snowed in and I couldn’t pick him up. By coincidence, my son Ken and his family came to Murphys and I had lunch with them instead.

DSC07429 (Copy)Murphys hosts a free Christmas dinner every year for anyone who would like to join hands and enjoy this special day with others. My friend was still snowed in and I decided to go, remembering the last time I attended this dinner was right after my husband died, year 2000. It is held at the Native Sons Hall in Murphys and he was their treasurer at the time. Table, by table moves though the line after everyone is seated and has had a chance to visit and get acquainted.

DSC07431 (Copy)I expected to sit with neighbors I knew, second from left, Jan and then Becky. At the door, I was told, I had to sit where I was directed because they fill up the tables from front to back, so fast, and I would be unlikely to find a seat with my friends.

DSC07428 (Copy)As it turned out, I was standing in line with Carol Burton, (rt.) and her family of five. With me we made a “family” of six. Carol and I were part of American Field Service when my kids were in high school. Left, her daughter-in-law who is an Old Blue, meaning she graduated from UC Berkley.

DSC07432 (Copy)What was nice is that I could move from table to table and catch up with a number of people I hadn’t seen in years. Here, Eleanor Darby with her grandson. She is another old friend from AFS.

DSC07435 (Copy)Pastor Jo Sider in red, I hadn’t seen in two years and I’ve run into her 3 times in two weeks.

DSC07436 (Copy)Dan Darby, a magnificent artist, and now, a published author. He wrote a book entitled, God’s Gold.

DSC07439 (Copy)I didn’t get pictures of everyone I knew at the dinner, but I managed to get Carol’s family. Nancy, in front with her mom, is an avid biker, and for the first time I got a glimpse into her hobby. She sent me a map of Club’s ride  through central Oregon,  and then the coastal side of the State of Oregon,to take place in May. Behind her, son Jim and his wife; to the right, her daughter, Laurie and husband, with Santa peeking out from the crowd.

Today, my immediate family and my daughter-in-law’s family will be celebrating Christmas with a Greek themed dinner. We don’t trade gifts, but we will be gifting the Butte Fire Recovery Fund.

From Dr. Seuss,  How The  Grinch Stole Christmas, comes the wisest words:   “Christmas is within our grasp as long as we have hands to clasp.”

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