Fulltime Roadrunners

Fulltime Roadrunners
Staying Put at BLM Oxbow Campground on the Colorado River, Cibola, AZ

Real Quick Update

January 29th, 2013

Was a busy and very happy day for me today.

I got my hummingbird feeders cleaned and refilled.

I got my floors swept and mopped.

I got my carpets vacuumed (love my Dyson!)

We went to Parker for the sole purpose of buying an ear wax cleaning system so I could hear again.  That’s where the happy day comes in!

We put the wax softening drops in my ear, I held my head sideways for 10 minutes to let it work, then turned my head to let it drain, kind of expecting drops of wax to come out with the liquid… didn’t happen, still deaf in that ear.  Next step is to use a syringe bulb (like those we used to suck “stuff” out of our babies noses) to push warm water into the ear to flush the softened wax out.  Oh Rattzlefratz!  The water heater was turned off.  Hopefully the wax would stay softened during the 10 minutes it takes for the water to get hot.

The first bulb of water I flushed into my ear didn’t present any results, the 2nd one brought out a little blob, but apparently the warm water broke up the plug because the next flush brought oodles of wax out. 

I can hear again… Thom doesn’t have to listen to me say “what” 350 times a day.  The only bad part is when Thom starts snoring, I can no longer lay on my good ear to plug it so my deaf ear doesn’t hear the snores.  I can live with that, no problem, as long as I can hear again. 

I now know how my Mom feels, not being able to hear the wild birds singing at the feeder or the hummingbird’s wings and little chirps.  I really missed the sound of the Quail doing their funny chip, chirp, gurgle sounds.

I thank the powers that be!

Ya’ll stay healthy ‘n happy… ‘n don’t let the wax build up!


New Cooking Pan’s ‘n Other Stuff

January 28th, 2013

We ended up going to the Big Tent during the RV Show… I was quite willing in spite of what I said earlier – a woman’s prerogative ‘n all that.  I noticed several vendors with different brands and types of cooking pans.  The coating on all my pans was scratched and the pans badly needed replacement.  I noted the prices on the pans at the show then went home and got online looking for comparable pans and checked prices.  The show pans were better priced so we went back and bought me a new set of ceramic coated cookware.  I totally love them… so far.  All my scratched pots ‘n pans were discarded.  That ended up being every pot and pan in my cupboard!  (Not bake ware)

There were fewer vendors at the RV Show and fewer people.  We’ve heard a rumor that they are talking about not bringing back the big tent next year.  I’ve no idea who “they” are; property owners, city, whomever; and keep in mind this is ONLY a rumor.  Quartzsite is rife with rumors!

Marv found a decent priced blue flame heater for us online.  We wanted the kind he has because it’s American made and he’s had no trouble with it since he got it.  It’s an Empire BF20.  We ordered one, with the stand and a week later we received it.  Marv and Thom had it together and running the same day we received it.  We absolutely love it!

When we bought our first room heater the blue flame technology had not reached a point where it didn’t need to be vented, so we bought the Olympic radiant heater, which had a pad rather than bricks.  During the 6 years we’ve had the Olympic the pad has gathered enough dust to seriously lower it’s heating efficiency and the only way to correct that is to send it in to the factory for pad replacement… expensive.  Vacuuming or blowing air on it would damage the pad and make the heater dangerous.  This is one of the reasons we chose to go to blue flame which you can clean yourself.  Blue flame technology has advanced so they are now vent free.

Another big reason we went to blue flame is that radiant heat warms the objects around the heater which then heat the air.  With the Olympic, we’d turn the heater on and it would take quite a while for the room to start warming up.  Blue flame heats the air so you start feeling the difference in room temperature right away, especially if there is decent air circulation.

We worked several days the week before the tent opened, expecting a big influx of campers, but we didn’t get near as  many as expected.  We’re back to regular days and hours.  It won’t be long before we get back to closing at 4 p.m. and then to only being open every other day.  The “season” is winding down.

Marv ‘n Deb are having their Super Bowl party this coming Sunday.  Unfortunately, we will be working so we won’t be able to go.  I won’t miss watching the game, but I will miss the camaraderie and the food.  If Thom and I are coming down with something like we think we may be, we won’t be going to work or the party.  We’ve been exposed several times in the last two weeks to colds and flu.  We have the anti-bacterial lotion at work and used it every time we had sickly people in the station, but you can’t clean the air with that stuff.  Oh well, what will be, will be.

It’s time to wind down and get dinner leftovers cleaned up… a really lousy ham.  The left over ham will go into a couple of zip-locks for two nights of bean soup.  It’s so fatty, it’s not even good for sandwiches.

Ya’ll stay healthy ‘n happy!

On my way out the door, I’ll share the sunrise we had on the 23rd.  It was gorgeous.

Click on it to open in new window.


Quick Catch-Up

January 18th, 2013

Temps are finally getting warmer.  Our lows are still in the 30’s, but above freezing.  Our highs are in the mid 60’s.  I’m loving the warmth during the day and even doing quite well with the mid 30F temps at night.  My window is, once again, open 1” so I can “breathe”.

Last Wednesday we worked to cover for the La Posa South Coordinators while they went to Blythe to take care of Social Security Business.  I got out of bed that day with my right ear all plugged up and achy.  I haven’t had an earache in over 20 years.  I don’t know if it’s a wax plug or an infection, all I know is it hurts and the cool breezes we’re still having make it hurt more.  I can deal with the pain, but the total lack of being able to hear on the right side is driving me crazy.  I am totally without insurance this year until July, so I’m trying to deal with it on my own.  I may end up at a Dr. but not yet, we can’t afford a $200 plus Dr. bill.  It’s not getting any better, just a little worse every day.

We have tickets to the Fireballs show tomorrow night.  We have to work tomorrow so it promises to be a very tiring day for us… we work on Sunday also.  We have Monday off, but are likely to be on call Tuesday.  This time of year in Q can be very busy.  At least we hope so!  These BLM areas only stay open as long as they can pay for themselves and this year it’s not as busy as in the past. 

Thom wants to go to the RV Show at the big tent on Monday, but I have no desire to go there at all, but I’ll go if he really, really wants to.  I’d just as soon spend the day doing our Sam’s Club shopping in Yuma.  We’re not sure what days we’ll have free this coming week and we’re running out of things we really need.  It’s getting tough to get around in Quartzsite now.  Lots of traffic due to the influx of people coming in for the big tent shows.

Enuff rambling.  I’m quitting for now.

Ya’ll stay healthy ‘n happy!


Baby It’s Cold Outside!

January 14th, 2013

We are still in abnormal weather conditions.  We haven’t had extended days of temps like this since the 1980’s.  Normal temps for this area are highs in the mid 60’s, lows in the low 40’s… we’re getting highs of mid 40’s and lows below freezing every night.  Not just freezing, but hard freeze.  They are predicting another 2 days of these temps before we climb back up to normal.  I’ve lost my large tomato plant, just hope I can salvage a few of the tomatoes.  My smaller tomato has some frozen branches, but also many viable branches.  Lots of tomatoes on this plant also.  The turnips and radishes were a bit droopy, but still okay, and the Swiss Chard looks great.  We’re keeping the “garden” covered with a tarp and a utility light burning under the tarp.  I’m ready for our snowbird weather to come back!

We’ve had ice on our watering hole two mornings in a row.  Yesterday it was a bit more than 1/4” thick, this morning it was 1/2” thick.  I broke it up this morning so the birds ‘n squirrels could drink, but it kept freezing over during the day.  This is definitely not normal Quartzsite, AZ weather!

Marv and Deb are here.  They arrived on Saturday while we were in California visiting Mom.  We got home too late to go say hi.  We worked Sunday.  Thom went to say hi after work, but I was dead tired with a major sinus headache so I spared them my surly presence.  This evening we went to dinner with them at a local Mexican Restaurant, La Casa.  The food is good, service slow due to too few waitresses.  Company was great!  We are now into the heat of the “Big Tent” season so all the businesses in town are very busy.

We had our busiest day at the contact station on Sunday.  We signed up 26 short term campers and 1 long term camper.  That is only about 1/3 to 1/4 of what we’ve seen in the past, but a whole lot more than we’ve had so far this year.  The contact station coordinators usually cover the station on Wednesdays, but they have an appointment that day so we will be filling in for them on Wednesday.  They’ve covered for us twice, so I’m very happy to be able to return the favor.

The Big Tent opens on Thursday, the 27th.  We need to find a new propane heater for the RV and want an Empire Blue Flame heater.  We will probably go to the Big Tent on Friday with the hopes of finding the heater we want at the show.  If we don’t find one, we’ve been told we can order one through Ace Hardware… there’s one 24 miles away in Blythe, CA.  Our heater is a radiant brick heater which has collected a lot of dust and can’t be cleaned by us.  It has to be sent in to the manufacturer for replacement of the face pad.  That would cost nearly as much as a new heater.  This heater has served us in good stead for the 6 years we’ve had it.  Considering the heavy dust areas we tend to stay in, we’re surprised it’s done so well for so long.

I’ve missed seeing and talking to Ron and Deb.  This weather is keeping all of us pretty much holed up in our rigs.  Deb has a job.  I’ve no idea what she’s doing or what days she works.  I really need to get back in touch!

Time to say g’nite and go watch Castle before I go bundle up in bed.

Ya’ll stay happy ‘n healthy!


No Internet

January 11th, 2013

I can type this and get it ready to post, just can’t post it until the wind dies way down and I can put the internet satellite dish up again.

We have a huge cold front moving in with winds of up to 40 mph.  It’s nasty out there!  Tonight the temp is only getting down to 30F, but tomorrow the high will be around 47F with a low of low 20’s tomorrow night.  With 4 more days and nights with those temps.  I’m certainly hoping this will be the end of “winter” and we can get on with being snowbirds in warm sunny Arizona!

Since we don’t use our house furnace, the compartments don’t stay as warm, so we’ll have to take extra measures to keep our pipes from freezing.  I hope running the water heater all night will help.  We’ll be running one of the taps at a drip all night as well.  The garden will be covered with a tarp with the utility light on under the tarp.  My turnips and radishes are fairly hardy in cold weather, but my tomatoes will be closest to the light so maybe they will stay safe.

We worked last Saturday and Sunday.  Business picked up a bit, but certainly nothing like we were used to in the past.  In the past, this close to the opening of the Big Tent RV Show we would be getting between 75 & 150 registrations per day.  Last Sunday was our biggest day so far and it was only 21 registrations.

This coming weekend Bob and Dot will be filling in for us on Saturday while we go visit my Mom in California.  We offered to take their day last Wed, but they wouldn’t let us.  We will be working on Sunday though.  I’m looking forward to seeing Mom and my brother Ed and his family.

Marv and Deb plan to arrive here on Saturday.  There were going to be here today, but with this storm blowing in they didn’t want to be on the road.  They might as well stay comfy and warm at the Avi Casino up by Laughlin.

Yesterday we did laundry so while the big generator was running the washer and dryer I cooked a large pork roast in the crockpot.  Absolutely yummy!  (and I don’t care for crockpot cooking)  We have enough leftovers for at least 2 more meals with the roast.

Time to say g’nite.

Ya’ll stay healthy ‘n happy.


Warmer Days Promised

January 3rd, 2013

…but only 2 of them (Sun ‘n Mon), then back down to mid 50’s for highs, and lows of mid 20’s to mid 30’s.

I tend to hibernate in the house when the temp is lower than 55F.  I don’t even want to go outside to put seed in the bird feeders, or water the garden, but I do.  I’d feel terribly guilty if I didn’t do it just because I’m a little uncomfortable out there.  The birds are feeling the cold also.  They show up in larger than normal numbers to stock up on food to help them stay warm.  Although it happens nearly every winter, the desert critters don’t handle freezing temps super well.

I’ve had a little Verdin here the last few days at the hummingbird feeder and it doesn’t seem to be afraid of much of anything except humans.  Most of them fly away quickly if another bird, including hummer, shows up.  This little guy holds his ground no matter what’s at the feeder.  Here’s a picture of the Verdin on the feeder with an Anna’s Hummingbird.  Just a couple of minutes ago it stopped for a drink while the Gila Woodpecker was there.  No fear!

You can see he’s just a bit bigger than the hummer, so imaging how tiny he looks compared to the woodpecker, who is bigger than a Robin.

We drove back down to Senator’s Wash yesterday to check out a thing or two and ask a couple of questions.  In the back of my mind I knew it, but was still surprised to hear we would be living in California there.  We are working on a way to maintain our AZ residency while there.  We will still be doing almost all our shopping and prescription buying in Yuma, AZ, so it should work out okay… one way or another.  As long as we still winter in Quartzsite, our residency is no problem, but when we go year round at Senator’s Wash we’re not sure.

The other day I was in one of the little local grocery stores here in Q and they had huge bunches of fresh local (local being Yuma) Swiss Chard for sale for $1.99/bunch.  Last night I cooked up a little less than 1/2 the bunch I bought and will cook the rest tonight.  I adore Lee and Ilse for introducing us to this veggie!  It is so naturally salty/sweet/tender yummy!

The water pump on our honey wagon isn’t working proiperly so Thom started working on it today.  There is a short in a wire in the base.  Unfortunately the base is sealed so there’s not way to get into it to fix it.  Looks like we have to buy a new pump unless someone can tell us where to find a new base.

We’re hoping to get over to California to visit Mom and my brother and his family in a week or two.  When we are at Senator’s Wash it will be much easier to get there… much closer.

Time for me to go finish up dinner (leftover meats – turkey, pork – stew and sautéed Swiss Chard).

Ya’ll stay healthy ‘n happy!



No More Promises

January 1st, 2013

I keep promising to do better at blogging more often, and I never live up to it.  So… No more promises and hopefully, I’ll do better anyway.

We are in the coldest part of winter here in the desert (mid-December thru mid-January) and I’m cold most of the time.  Our highs are running in the 50’s and lows in the mid 20’s to high 30’s.  We’ve been covering the garden for 2 weeks and some nights we leave a utility light burning under the tarp covering the garden to keep it from freezing.

Of course; Mike, Tiff ‘n Coen visit us during this cold period so even though it was warmer for them, it was still cooler than we/they would have liked.

Because of the thorn hazards here in the desert, we bought solid rubber tires for our trikes, but couldn’t get them to fit the rim properly.  Come to find out, Mike has experience mounting them on wheels so he mounted our tires on the wheels and our trikes are now operational.  He and Tiff ‘n Coen took them for a jaunt while they were here.  (Coen’s on Tiff’s lap).

Mike did a bit of prospecting while here too.  He didn’t have time to do as much as he’d’ve liked (too busy installing our tires), but he did get to use Thom’s metal detector (found lots of can lids, nails ‘n wires).  Mike did inspire me to get out there and play with the metal detector now that I’ve an idea of what I’m listening too/for and how to use it.

The kids time here was way too short for us.  We hope they can come again during a better time of the year… October or March or April when it’s warmer.  When we are at Senator’s Wash, we’ll have swimming and the reservoir to cool down in.

Some bug managed to eat the stem of my cucumber plant right at the surface of the dirt and killed it.  I do have another plant trying to survive so we’ll see if it manages.  If not, that’s okay, I will get more started in February to take with us to Senator’s wash and grown big beautiful Armenian cukes!  In the meantime my salad turnips and radishes are doing quite well.

Marv ‘n Deb will be here in 2 to 3 weeks.  We look forward to seeing them.  We’ve missed them.

While showing the kids the vendors, we bought a few tee-shirts, gotta replenish stock every now and then.

Time to say g’nite.

Ya’ll stay healthy ‘n happy!