Tuesday, November 30, 2010


Tucson, AZ - With all of our traveling this year, we have eaten at many restaurants; some chains some local; some good some bad. But I missed Panda Express. This ranks as one of my very favorite places so for our first meal with Jeri and Terry, off we went to Panda Express. Yippee!!!

ribsteak_thumb[3] On Sunday we decided we would barbeque steaks and invite our friend Paul to join us for dinner. Jeri and I went to Costco and got the best steaks ever. Of course, we had to munch our way through the store along with about a million other people. But those steaks were so worth it.

Terry got the grill going and Jeri taught us a new way to fix the steaks. You pour melted butter over them before you put them on the grill and they brown up beautifully. The meat was cooked to perfection. We had potato salad and green beans to go with it.

eatingdinner_thumb[3] The company was fabulous but the wind decided to blow and it was getting cold so we had to go inside to visit some more. Great to see Paul again. He went to Alaska this summer and has great stories to tell.

I didn’t have the camera out so I’ve taken a couple of pictures from Jeri’s blog to use in mine.

salad On Monday night I picked the restaurant for us to try and I picked a winner. It was Choice Greens. It’s a salad restaurant. When you go in, you pick up an order form and a pencil; fill out everything you want in your salad; and they fix it and chop it up for you. It was fantastic. The only problem was the salads are huge. Way too much for one person to eat. We got to take salad home and that’s what we had for lunch the next day. Now I’ve got to find out if they have one of these up near Apache Junction. No such luck. I just checked their web site and their only locations are in Tucson. So I will continue my hunt for a good salad near AJ.


planes After leaving Benson we only had 47 miles to go to our next stop in Tucson. We were meeting up with Jeri and Terry and were going to park at Davis-Monthan Air Force Base. This is a first for us. (I love “firsts”) We had never parked on a base of any kind before.

IMG_7961 Since Terry is a veteran, he was able to get us passes to camp on base. Thank you Terry and all of you service men and women for your sacrifice.

planes1 What a beautiful campground. We got to park right next to Jeri and Terry which worked out so well for Jim. They hooked us up into their TV system which offers about 500 different channels. We only have an antenna so this was a lot of fun for us. But most important was the fact that the final Nascar race of the season for the Championship was on Sunday.

IMG_7956 What fun it was to see Jeri and Terry again. We always have such a great time with them. And it’s a special treat to be able to pet Duchess again. She is such a lamb.

IMG_7966 Isn’t the moon and the sky over our campground just gorgeous?

We arrived on Saturday and the base was pretty quiet. They do a 100% ID check and we had to have a special pass to get back on the base every time we left. Makes you feel very secure and safe.

Monday morning – Jeri and Terry forgot to mention that Revelry plays at 7:00 a.m. Very loudly over the outdoor speakers. Once my heart quit pounding, I thought that was really neat. Then in the evenings they play taps. What a great experience.

Saturday, November 27, 2010


IMG_7949 We spent two nights in the Escapees Park in Benson, AZ. They gave us a wonderfully huge site and it felt really good to just relax.

Dave and Millie the Mooch were also at the park so we were able to spend some wonderful time with him. Went out to dinner twice and I forgot to take any pictures both times. That’s what happens when you meet up with old friends and you get so busy catching up.

Dave, be prepared to get your picture taken when we all get to Yuma in January.

IMG_7950 Jim and I also ran down to Bisbee to have lunch at the Copper Queen Hotel. Bisbee is an old mining town which was once the largest city between St. Louis and San Francisco. It is only about 8 miles from the Mexico border but there are not any problems.

IMG_7953 Bisbee is now a great little town full of artists, weavers, and other artisans. Had a wonderful lunch and then drove back to Benson to have dinner with Dave.


These pictures were taken on our way from Capitan, NM to Benson, AZ. We spent the night in Deming, NM at the Escapees Park and then went into the Escapees Park in Benson for two nights.IMG_7944

This is a Border Patrol check point. We were just waved on through so I guess we don’t look too dangerous.

IMG_7939This tree was just all by itself and I just wanted to take a picture.

IMG_7948 Can anybody tell me what this thing is on top of this car? I have no idea what it is.


billy2 Lincoln, NM – The story of Lincoln has the dubious distinction of having been the most violent town in western American History. President Rutherford B. Hayes once called the single road through Lincoln, “the most dangerous street in America.”

Here is a tale fueled by ambition, greed, corruption and violence, dripping in political intrigue, which spilled over to the state capital in Santa Fe.

Although Billy the Kid was the most famous character in Lincoln, he had only a minor role in the larger story of the Lincoln County War. The War actually started in 1877 when John Tunstall decided to establish a mercantile store in Lincoln to compete with L. G. Murphy and Company who also had a store in Lincoln and also have government contracts at Fort Stanton.

Lincoln County Courthouse Today-500 Murphy built a two story building known as The House which not only included a store, but a bar, a Masonic lodge and living quarters. Murphy lost out on a beef contract and the money began to run dry. One of Murphy’s partners died and Murphy’s lawyer, Alexander McSween, was sent to New York to collect the $10,000 in life insurance. On the way back to Lincoln he met Tunstall and together they devised a scheme to open a competing establishment based on McSween’s inside information of Murphy’s business.

In October 1877, a young man named William H. Bonney rode into town and went to work for Tunstall on his ranch. William soon became known as Billy the Kid.

IMG_7923 McSween was accused of embezzlement and on February 18, 1878, Tunstall was murdered by a posse formed by Dolan (a partner of Murphy). The town became split with the Dolan guys being called “The Boys” and Tunstall’s guys called “The Regulators”. The Regulators included Billy the Kid.

There were killing on both sides including the assassination of Sheriff Brady and his deputy by The Regulators. In July of 1878 the feud came to a climax when a five day gun battle was fought. On the last day of the battle it is estimated that 2,000 shots were fired.

billy For the next six months, outlaw bands over ran the county, murdering and pillaging. Of all the murders, thefts, property destruction and rapes during the Lincoln County War, only one man, Billy the Kid, was ever tried, convicted and sentenced. This was for the murder of Sheriff Brady. Billy the Kid was to hang in Lincoln on May 13, 1881 but made his famous escape from the courthouse, killing his two guards, on April 28, 1881.


I am really behind on posting. We are now in Apache Junction, AZ but I need to make all my posts on our trip from Capitan, NM to Apache Junction. So hopefully I’ll be caught up in the next couple of days.

IMG_7930 Capitan, NM – We ate dinner at this restaurant and it was surprisingly good. We were the only customers and were delightfully entertained by our waitress who is also the owner of the place.

She was telling us about going to a garage sale and a large poodle mix decided he wanted to go home with her. The dog’s owner told her to take him home for the night to see if he would fit in with her other three dogs. So she did, but it was a disaster. Her older dogs were not happy with this intruder and she was up most of the night separating them. So she got up the next morning to take the dog back and discovered that the owner had packed up and left town. So she was stuck with the dog.

IMG_7929To top it all off, he was not fixed and neither was her female Chihuahua. Bet you can’t guess what happened. So she was worried about big puppies but couldn’t afford a c-section. So she read on line about shaking the puppies out when the dad was much larger than the mom. We laughed until our sides hurt listening to her stories.

Thursday, November 25, 2010


happy I am so grateful for all the wonderful blessings I enjoy at this time of my life. I have the greatest husband in all the world and a son who has grown into a wonderful man. We are healthy, not wealthy but doing just fine, wiser than we were last year and happier than we’ve ever been.

I miss my folks but I’m happy they are together. I’m thankful for all of my family even though they are scattered across the country. That’s one of the great things about our new life style – we get to visit with all of them sometime during the year. How great is that.

thanksgiving Like Jeri said in her blog, the list of things I’m thankful for goes on and on. Old friends and new ones who have become as close as family. Our beautiful motor home that keeps us sheltered and comfortable. This wonderful world that we live on that provides us with all the essentials of this life. My Father in Heaven who loves me and watches over me always.

Life is wonderful.

Sunday, November 21, 2010


smokeycubCapitan, NM – In 1944 the Forest Service originated the use of a poster depicting Smokey Bear. We were really close to his burial site so we decided to visit Smokey.

On May 4, 1950, a carelessly discarded cigarette started the Los Tablos blaze in the Lincoln National Forest near Capitan, NM. ON May 6, a second fire, known as the Capitan Gap fire started in the same general area. Together these fires destroyed 17,000 acres. On May 8, a 70 mph wind made it impossible to control the blaze. It was on this day that nineteen men were trapped in a rock slide where the fire burned around them. They were rescued without any fatalities, but later expressed the opinion that they knew “just how a slice of toast feels”.IMG_7915

On May 9, a fire crew brought in a badly singed bear cub. They had found the cub clinging to the side of a burnt pine tree. Badly burned about the buttocks and feet, he was given the name “Hotfoot”. His name was soon changed to Smokey Bear.

IMG_7916 In 1952 Congress passed a bill into law governing the commercialization of the name and image of Smokey Bear. Due to the vast amount of mail he received, Smokey was given his own zip code.

Once Smokey recovered from his burns, he was moved to the National Zoo where he served his country for 25 years. That is equal to 70 human years and at that time was the mandatory retirement age of all Federal employees.

IMG_7919 Smokey died in 1976 and was returned to Capitan to be buried near the mountains where he was found.


Did it happen or not? The UFO Museum in Roswell allows you to draw your own conclusion. The following information is taken from interviews with people that lived in Roswell during the summer of 1947.

IMG_7907In the summer of 1947, there were a number of UFO sightings all over the United States. Sometime during the first week of July 1947, something crashed near Roswell.

"Mack" Brazel, a New Mexico rancher, saddled up his horse and rode out to check on the sheep after a fierce thunderstorm the night before. As he rode along, Brazel began to notice unusual pieces of what seemed to be metal debris, scattered over a large area. Upon further inspection, Brazel saw that a shallow trench, several hundred feet long, had been gouged into the land.

ufo-museum Brazel was struck by the unusual properties of the debris, and after dragging a large piece of it to a shed, he took some of it over to show his neighbors, the Proctors. The Proctors told Brazel that he might be holding wreckage from a UFO or a government project, and that he should report the incident to the sheriff.

A day or two later, (remember this is 1947, roads were in rough shape and you only went to town when you needed a bunch of supplies) Mack drove into Roswell where he reported the incident to Sheriff George Wilcox, who reported it to Intelligence Officer, Major Jesse Marcel of the 509 Bomb Group.

lightpost Major Marcel went to investigate Mack Brazel's story. Marcel and Senior Counter Intelligence Corps (CIC) agent, Captain Sheridan Cavitt, followed the rancher off-road to his place. They spent the night there and Marcel inspected a large piece of debris that Brazel had dragged from the pasture.

According to Marcel, the debris was "strewn over a wide area, I guess maybe three-quarters of a mile long and a few hundred feet wide." Scattered in the debris were small bits of metal that Marcel held a cigarette lighter to, to see if it would burn. "I lit the cigarette lighter to some of this stuff and it didn't burn", he said.

Along with the metal, Marcel described weightless I-beam-like structures that were 3/8" x 1/4", none of them very long, that would neither bend nor break. Some of these I-beams had indecipherable characters along the length, in two colors. Marcel also described metal debris the thickness of tin foil that was indestructible. For days thereafter, the debris site was closed while the wreckage was cleared.

starchild On July 8, 1947, Walter Haut, public relations officer, finished the press release he'd been ordered to write, and gave copies of the release to the two radio stations and both of the newspapers. By 2:26 P.M., the story was out on the AP Wire: "The Army Air Forces here today announced a flying disk had been found". Hours later the first press release was rescinded and a second press release was issued that stated the 509th Bomb Group had mistakenly identified a weather balloon as wreckage of a flying saucer.

The military tried to convince the news media from that day forward that the object found near Roswell was nothing more than a weather balloon.

Meanwhile, back in Roswell, Glenn Dennis, a young mortician working at the Ballard Funeral Home, received some curious calls from the morgue at the air field. It seems the Mortuary Officer needed to get hold of some small hermetically sealed coffins,and wanted information about how to preserve bodies that had been exposed to the elements for a few days, without contaminating the tissue.

IMG_7909 Also back in town, Walt Whitmore and Lyman Strickland saw their friend, Mack Brazel, being escorted to the Roswell Daily Record by three military officers. He ignored Whitmore and Strickland, which was not at all like Mack, and once he got to the Roswell Daily Record offices, he changed his story. He now claimed to have found the debris on June 14. Brazel also mentioned that he'd found weather observation devices on two other occasions.

Later that afternoon, an officer from the base retrieved all of the copies of Haut's press release from the radio stations and newspaper offices.


So UFO or weather balloon?

See those eyes? We have our own alien.

Friday, November 19, 2010


We visited the Bitter Lake Wildlife Refuge to check it out for Dave and Nancy who are going to be volunteering here next year. We really liked looking at all the birds but I'm not sure I could be a bird counter. They move around too much.

Bitter Lake Refuge is located about 7 miles from Roswell. It’s not a large refuge but it offers a very unique environment for many species of wildlife. It is located on the Pecos River.

IMG_7888The Refuge is home to at least 357 species of birds, 59 species of mammals, over 50 species of reptiles and amphibians, and 24 fish species.

IMG_7901The Refuge provides habitat for thousands of migrating lesser sandhill cranes, Ross and snow geese and about twenty duck species such as pintails, mallards, canvasback, gadwall, shovelers and three species of teal.



IMG_7895It is really a beautiful place and be sure to bring your binoculars. If you are a bird watcher, this is definitely a place you want to visit.

dragonflies_slide1 The refuge is also home to hundreds and hundreds of dragonflies during the hot summer months. They hold a huge dragonfly festival every September.


IMG_7883 For those of you who don’t follow horse racing, Mine That Bird was the 2009 Kentucky Derby winner.

IMG_7869I like to watch the Derby every year but I don’t know the first thing about horse racing. Last year (May 2009) we were parked at Elephant Butte, NM next to Mike and Sandy. Mike casually mentioned that a horse from Roswell was running in the derby and that he knew the owners. Said the horse didn’t have a chance but the owners figured it would be great to say they had a horse that ran in the Derby.

IMG_7873 We made plans to watch the race but decided not to place a bet especially since we didn’t know how to place that bet.

Well, guess what. That horse won at 50-1 odds. Mine That Bird was the only gelding in the field and was dead last. But his jockey road him to the rail and he ended up winning by 6 3/4 lengths. This victory margin was the largest since Assault won by 8 lengths in 1946.

IMG_7870 His trainer, Chip Wooley, drove the horse from New Mexico to Kentucky by van with a broken leg. What an amazing story of an underdog who didn’t give up.

The horse is owned by Dr. Leonard Blach of Buena Suerte Equine farm and Mark Allen of Double Eagle Ranch.

IMG_7876 While in Roswell Mike and Sandy took us out to meet Dr. Blach and see where Mine that Bird was trained. The horse was in Kentucky but he will be at the Ranch next time we get there and we get to go back and meet him.

IMG_7872 For me, this was such an exciting adventure. Being able to see their other studs and how beautiful they are. WOW. It was too windy to work the horses so I’m hoping that next time we get to watch them working out.

IMG_7881 We also got to meet Jerry Nicodemus, an American Quarter Horse Hall of Fame jockey. He now works as the Training Center Manager for the Double Eagle Ranch.


IMG_7866 We met Mike and Sandy last year at Elephant Butte, NM when they parked their rig next to ours. They live in Roswell and we knew we had to stop and say hi to them on our way to AZ.

We didn’t realize that it was Sandy’s birthday and her sister and husband had driven down from Kansas City to surprise her. So we got four wonderful friends instead of two.

IMG_7867Mike and Sandy invited us over for dinner. Notice, Jim and I are no where in these pictures helping do anything. Talk about being spoiled. Dinner was fabulous and the company was even better.

After dinner we went to a play at the Roswell Community Theater called Birds of a Feather. It was so much fun and we laughed so hard.

Sure am glad we decided to come through Roswell.


IMG_7853 IMG_7862 IMG_7857 IMG_7855 IMG_7863

IMG_7864 I have no idea what this is but it was at the rest stop we stopped at.