2012News Archive



Happy New Year! We are going into the first week of the New Year with temperatures in the 70's with clear, cobalt-blue skies. Now, that's why we moved to Arizona! We hope your New Year is off to a great start, too!

Well, we've competed part of Phase I of repainting and upgrading our home's interior. Today was paint day (not us, are you kidding? Barb and I went to a movie, did some shopping and hit Starbucks - twice - before coming home to find the work all done). Now installed is new and higher baseboards along with crown molding in all the newly painted areas - looks great!


Halfway through the month and not much to report, unless you really want to count an airbag sensor recall on the Toyota, a routine visit from the pest contol company and a dental exam  . . . such is life in "the retirement zone".

John and Bob Mummey, a Pitman, New Jersey high school classmate also living in Arizona, spent several hours in the desert north of Cave Creek checking out the scenery - now check out the size of these saguaros! Bob, left; John, right.


On the 25th we joined 30 other Miatas with the Saguaro Miata Club on a "run" to the Queen Creek Olive Mill for a tour and lunch. After that we proceeded to the Wild Horse Casino and parted with some cash . . . %*#@! slots!


A trip to the Butterfly Exhibit at the Desert Botanical Garden yeilded this photo of a Buckeye butterfly.


We took a short trip to Houston to see Jessica, ate some good food and had a great visit.


 . . . and found some wildflowers along the way  . . .


A three day trip to Las Vegas had its ups and downs - literally. Barb misstepped off a curb on Day 2 and broke a bone in her foot. At the time we thought it was a severe sprain, but upon getting back home and having it checked out, there is indeed a break. Photos from the "happy times" of the trip below:

We were fortunate, though, to dovetail this trip with a business trip of Jessica's for an insurance case she's working  . . . so we were treated to very good seats at the Elton John concert at Caesars Palace. Great music and performance!


And a stop by the Conservatory at the Bellagio produced these photos:



All quiet on the western front . . . nothing to report.


HOT! HOT! HOT!  . . . daytime highs aren't anything monumental, but the average nighttime lows are averaging 4 degrees above the historical norm  . .  a phenomenon for the last few years  . . . global warming? . . . urban heat island?  . . .

We can't give a two-thumbs-up review to the Cirque du Soleil "KOOZA" performance  . . . extremely slow-moving and not up to other Cirque perfomances we've seen.


Well, if we thought July was hot, maybe we should look at yesterday's record high on the 9th of a mere 116º. So . . . July was just "warm" by comparison. And there's not much relief in sight for now. The most exciting thing lately was watching paint dry - literally! One more bedroom's initial contruction low quality paint bites the dust. So watered down to begin with, a double coat of the good stuff makes a big difference. All that's left is the master suite and we are done with paint.

Well, it's that time of year again  . . . John's chronometer turns over another year  . . . 68  . . . what the %*! happened to all those other years  . . . too fast  . .  too fast!


It's Nebraska Husker football time again - and the crowd gathered at Fuzzy's Sports Grill in Surprise, Arizona for the 1st game of the season, a 49-20 win over Southern Miss!

Nothing beats the heat of the Valley but a trip to San Diego  . . . cool breezes and a waterfront view at the Navy Lodge on Coronado Island.


Here we are at the Hotel del Coronado which opened its doors in 1888.

. . .  and just a few of the beautiful flowers we found along the way . . .




It's that time of year again  . . . Barb's birthday, Jessica's birthday  . . . Halloween AND the annual Surprise, Arizona Senior Tennis tour, this year starring Jim Courier, John McEnroe, Michael Chang, Todd Martin, Martina Navratilova and Tracy Austin.

Below: 2012 Tournament Guide; Chang getting ready to serve.


Below: Martina at the net with a backhand overhead return; McEnroe throwing his blue shirt to the crowd after his match.



Above: McEnroe's "patented" I can't believe that call" look; Courier and Austin leaving the court. Below: John, Barb and Jessica at the match; Courier and Martin at the net after Courier won the match.



Early in the month we had visitors from Omaha: Kathy H., Suzan N. and Lynn C., all good friends of Barb's from our time living there. Barb kept them busy exploring downtown Phoenix, Cave Creek and Carefree and their visit was a lot of fun.

Barb - Suzan - Kathy - Lynn

Our good friend, Roger Hansen, turned 60 this month! We can't believe it - and neither can he.

On Thanksgiving we joined Bob and Bonnie Mummey, John's classmates from Pitman, NJ, at their home in Cave Creek. Food and company were excellent!


Christmas lights up - check! Not tripping over extension cords - check! So far so good.

We attended the Sahuaro Miata Club Christmas Party on the 1st, held at Corte Bella's own Anacapa Restaurant. A good turnout and good food.

Then it was Emerson's "white elephant" party on the 8th. Darryl and Kathy always put a lot of effort into the food, decorations and, most importantly, ensuring everyone has a good time. Thanks, Darryl and Kathy!

And, of course, John's day wouldn't have been complete without a call to his oldest (although actually younger) friend from Pitman, NJ, Charlie Letocha, on his 68th birthday.

On the 11th we had the large Palo Verde tree which has graced the left rear corner of our property removed. Great looking tree - with a bad habit of dropping all sorts of "stuff" to the ground all year long - a very messy tree. It took a crew of three, 3½ hours to remove it, trunk and roots included. In its place a nice size "pineapple" palm, so named for the way the trunk looks as the tree grows. No more cleaning the back yard every week! Yes!!

Jessica visited from Houston the 13th through the 16th and it was great to have her here with us.  On the 14th all three of us went downtown to the Children First Academy's annual Christmas Party for the kids. Barb's good friend, Judy Gregg, who also volunteers at CFA, was our chauffeur for the day.

On the 21st we attended Chuck and Carol Siconolfi's annual caroling party, with lots of food and good cheer with friends. On Christmas Eve day we drove to Prescott, Arizona with Bob & Bonnie Mummey, did a little shopping, actually saw some snow, returned to Scottsdale for dinner at Charleston's, then returned to Mummey's home in Cave Creek before driving home later that evening. All in all, a very pleasurable day!


Here we are waiting for our lunch at the Prescott Brewing Company.

We are looking forward to 2013, another great year in the Valley of the Sun with a few National Park trips thrown in for good measure - perhaps Yellowstone  . . . and who knows?