Riggins with little brother Charlie and little sister Sadie.


Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Short post today

Had the usual morning coffee, and then Donna headed off to the truck company, she will have a long day as she does a shift at the restaurant tonight. Sam had his usual 3 month checkup, everything was fine and the doctor was pleased with all the numbers, so he is good for another 3000 miles or 3 months.

After putting it off for a long while we bit the bullet and decided to get a laptop, Sam went to a computer store near home and they had a low mileage Dell Latitude, with 1.6gig speed and 1 gig of ram and a 40 gig hard drive for the mere sum of $275.00US. Since it came with an XP operating system which is what we are both used to and we can transfer our programs right to it, it was decided to buy this now and then when the house is gone and we are set to hit the trail we will buy a new laptop with all the bells and whistles and this one will become the backup.

Sam is happy because he will take it with him on trips and when he has a stop at a motel without computers for guests he can still check his mail and update the blog and read blogs. It’s gonna take a week to wipe the smile off his face, even though he was 3 hours transferring the needed programs such as Office, Live Writer, Picasso, and a couple others that were deemed necessary for survival.

The weather is again gorgeous and is supposed to reach into the 80’s, today and be mild for the rest of the weekend. Maybe I shouldn’t have said anything or we’ll wake up with snow Easter morning.

Rigg’s is a happy camper as he has been getting to run outside with the nice days, When Adam gets home from school he will be even happier. That’s it for now, Be Safe out there. Sam & Donna.

PS. Tammy were supposed to have a nicer and warmer day here than in Gulfport, Hope it lasts.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Tuesday musings.

After a good nights sleep we were up at the usual 04:30am, had our coffee and Donna was off to the truck company, I went down to my office in the basement and found 5 days worth of e-mails and blogs waiting for me, I just browsed through yesterdays and a couple of earlier blogs but A lot goes on in 5 days so it always takes me awhile to get up to speed. I keep saying I will buy a laptop but never seem to get to it, Most motels have a computer terminal for their customers, but the last couple of 4 night trips I took I stayed in some that didn’t.

While checking my mail I got one from work with orders for a trip for Thursday and Friday, another college team I will pick up in Quincy Il and take to Ullin IL. a one nighter. I like these they are only 300-400 mile trip and you get back home fast.

Donna asked me what I wanted to do for my birthday when I got back yesterday. I told her I didn’t  much care maybe dinner out or something, well since my birthday is Thursday I know what I will be doing for my birthday and that is driving a bus down the highway.

Rigg”s is getting to know the routine, now when I bring my overnight bag into the kitchen to leave for a trip, he will get between it and the door and keep pushing it away, didn’t take him long to figure out when he see’s the bag I am leaving for awhile.

I never fail to be amazed the intelligence a pet has and the way they show love and affection. Not that he isn’t spoiled by his Dad.

Monday, March 29, 2010

Home at last

Sam got home at 02:30AM, drove straight through from Tuscaloosa AL. to Festus MO. where another driver relieved me and then I drove a small van home in about an hour.

The trip was a long but great trip, took the Track and Field team from Central Methodist College down to Alabama University for a big meet must have been 40 coaches from all over the Midwest and Southeast parked on the lot I was on.

Tuscaloosa is a really friendly and nice city. I discovered their War Memorial Park and had to take some pictures.


                            Picture of the picture taker




                US Navy A7-E Corsair Carrier based attack plane


          US Navy 5 inch 38cal Deck gun from USS Tuscaloosa WW2



                          US Army UH1-D Huey Slick


                                               USMC M60 Tank



                       Memorial to Veterans wounded in action

This park is located on MacFarlane Blvd right in front of a big Shopping Center, The citizens of Alabama can be rightly proud of this park as everything about it is immaculate,the displays, the grounds, and stones it is all first class.

Rigg’s was his usual all wound up when he saw his Dad come through the door, Mom said he was his old self and not to bad while I was gone,He got a bath Sunday, and I really noticed how shiny and fresh he looked, that will last till a sunny day when he is out rolling around in the grass and dirt.

Well I am still worn out from my trip so, Be Safe out there,Sam & Donna.

Friday, March 26, 2010

Friday in West Memphis

Well I took a car down from Kingdom City MO, yesterday to West Memphis Ar where I will wait for my bus to show up at 04:00am, I don't have much time as it is that time now, You should see the company car I have, a white Crown Vic that did duty as a police car, Wow, how mant miles I have behind the wheel of one of these babies in my life. Anyway I am off to Tuscaloosa Ms for a couple day. I'll say hi to MOM and Andy,Adam & Rigg's. Thats all the time I have.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Plans always change

Sam got a call last night and he is now leaving Thursday morning and driving a car from the terminal in Kingdom City MO to West Memphis AR. There he will get a room and wait till 04:00am-05:00am Friday for the bus to come down and then relieve the driver from MO and take the group the rest of the way to the Tuscaloosa AL area, it is a college sports team from Central Methodist College in Fayette MO. They are all good young people and Sam has taken teams from this school several times this winter. The process will be reversed on Sunday and Sam should be back either late Sunday or early Monday.

Hope the motels I am staying in have a computer so I can see what is going on in the world.

Anyway that’s about it if you are in the Tuscaloosa area and see a big Red, White and Blue Trailways coach with Huskey on the side parked at a motel you will know it is me. Be Safe out there. Sam & DonnaBeattyvilleKY03-17-2010

Here is a picture from last weeks trip to Kentucky, notice the seam of coal in the hillside behind the bus. The motel owner said they used to mine a lot of coal in this area. Reminds me of Pennsylvania.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

More news

Wednesday started like most others up at 04:30am, coffee, say good bye to Donna as she leaves for the truck company, Go down to the computer and start reading what happened in other peoples lives that was more exciting than mine. Now it is waiting for Adam to get up so I can fix him breakfast and find out what he wants to do, The weather says Fair and 66 degrees today so I may suggest the train museum, all depends on how bad he wants to spend the day playing with his buddies behind us, They have a trampoline, and then there is always bike riding, and playing in the basement if its gets nasty. I’ll let him make the call.

My son Andy took Rigg’s for his one year old Vet appointment yesterday. Actually he is 1 year and three months, but this was the first chance to get him in since the weather started to warm up. The Vet said he is just beautiful, has excellent muscle and body development, She also said he will sire really good pups when he is another 6-8 months old. But the big news was since he is a large Lab he was able to get his 3 year rabies shot and his last puppy shots. So Rigg’s is now officially a big boy.

Boy was he ever proud of his new rabies tag, when he got home I took his new collar off and he really watched intently as I put the tag on the ring. He is really possessive of his collar and kept pushing my hands to put it back on, Then when I got it on he immediately ran through the house showing off his big boy tag.

I got a call from my boss telling me I had a trip on the bus to Alabama scheduled for this weekend. That’s all I know for now until he e-mails the orders, At least I am going south again hopefully away from any snow. Hey Tammy maybe next time it will be Mississippi.

Well that's about it for now ,Be safe out there. Sam & Donna.

                                  Our Big Boy Rigg’s


Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Tuesday Musings

Well, up at 04:30am had coffee with Donna, she is now off to the truck company. Adam’s Mom came by last night and wanted him to spend the night with her, so the house is quiet. Rigg’s got a big surprise when Mom came home from work last night, she bought him a new Doggie bed and it is large. Rigg’s always acts like he really knows when a present is for him and goes crazy like a little kid. It’s a really nice maroon and grey and it will fit nicely in the trailer when we start out adventure.
Yesterday turned out to be a gorgeous day again, Adam elected to play from 10:00AM till 06:00PM with the kids behind us on their trampoline and then bike riding. He also learned the clothespin and baseball card trick to make your bike sound like a motorcycle. That ended up putting the Train Museum trip on hold for another day.
Sam got a surprise yesterday too. I was going to sand some surface rust next to the step pads on my step rails and repaint them. When I took the rubber step pads off I found out that water had gotten under them and rotted them away. The drivers side might be able to be saved but the passenger side is a total loss. They are Dee-Zee brand and I put them on as soon as I bought the truck in 2004 so they are six years old. I will have to replace them. I am wondering now if a should have spent the extra money for chrome, instead of the black finish, At the time I didn’t want the shiny chrome and the black one were quite a bit cheaper.
Today I will have paint the drivers side and then hunt for some prices on a new set. If I buy the same brand I will pop the rubber off as soon as I install the and put a bead of sealer around the edge on the bottom to keep the moisture out.
Well everyone have a good day and be safe out there. Sam & Donna

Monday, March 22, 2010

Spring Break

Well today is the first day of Spring Break for my grandson Adam, Grandpa will have to figure something out for us to do today, it’s a cloudy day so the park will be out, maybe a trip to the train museum. The St Louis Museum of Transport in Kirkwood MO is only about a 20 minute drive and they have all kinds of neat stuff for a nine year old boy and his nine year old Grandpa to climb over. I could get a few pictures if the weather co-operates. Donna is off to the truck company and I am awaiting Adam waking up, Rigg’s is still zonked out from playing ball before Donna got ready for work, as soon as she left he went to his bed and crashed,
Thought I would show you a couple of pictures of a trip Adam, & I took to Fort Madison Iowa a few years ago to shoot pictures of trains,The campground was located right on the edge of town and was $12 a night. had a big clean shower house/bathroom and not much else it looks like before the big flood of 93 there was a swimming area as it is on a cove of the Mississippi River but the flood destroyed  it. We were there in the fall but there were still several motor homes and trailers there. The trailer is our old 5th wheel.
Adamat Fort Madison10-06-06c
Adamat Fort Madison10-06-06f
Adamat Fort Madison10-07-06c
Adamat Fort Madison10-07-06a
At the campground you could shoot pictures across a cornfield that had been harvested. The others were taken at the Depot where you could shoot from the passenger platform. Amtrak’s Southwest Chief stops here.
Well that’s about it for now. Be Safe out there, Sam & Donna.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Sunday thoughts.

Well we held out and no snow in Dardenne Prairie this morning, We heard from Kenny and Angela in KC and they said they had 3-4 inches, we are a little over 200 miles east on I-70 and it was cloudy and in the 40’s most of the day with a little rain in the evening. I think we all have had our fill of winter this year, all except for those lucky Canadians who went to California this year. Anyway I posted some pictures yesterday of my truck or tow vehicle if that’s what it’s called and went into a blurb about the hard cover I put on and then wouldn’t you know it I found the pictures I wanted originally about an hour after the blog was published, so here they are.

100_0250  100_0249 

As you can see it is in four folding sections and does a good job of keeping everything dry when it is down. It has a lock on the front compartment and one on the rear. The other thing I just remembered I did and it was ridiculously cheap was I put a torsion bar on the rear tailgate, it was about $15US and only required two holes being drilled, but you do need two people to lift the tailgate back into position. You can open the gate with little or no effort like an SUV rear door. That is my old truck in the background, it was a short bed ext cab, with the smaller diesel. The newer one is a long bed with the duramax/allison combination and is like night and day over the old one. Even though it is longer to maneuver I like the longer bed, no worries about cab interference, and it seems to ride better while towing.

Rigg’s had another typical day I’ll let him tell you about it.

Boy Dad chased me and chased me to get the red thing from me....its a what ?...an inhaler? but Mom I see u put it in your

mouth and its okay.....Its what ..medicine...yuck I don't like medicine....what did Dad mean when he said Walgreens isn't going

to believe this again.

I guess Andy snitched on me...well, he was in that thing that gets you all wet and Dad was downstairs and your bed looked comfy.

And I have short hair so I do get cold, and I always see you and Dad pull the blanket up over you...Guess I really conked out, I

didn't even hear Andy until he came over tapped me !....boy I was having such a good dream and he almost scared me to death, that

wasn't very nice.

Yeah I took that thing from shower floor, but Andy's the one that didn't hang it up....it really didn't taste very good...too soapy tasting.

Oh, it's suppose to taste like soap because its a shower sponge?

I really didn't mean to keep waking you up but I wanted to play and you had the gate up and you were ignoring me, that's why

I kept getting toys and throwing them over the gate....I thought you might want to play too and throw them back to me.

Oh well, honestly I'll try to be better tomorrow




Well, that’s it for today, be safe out there, Sam & Donna

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Saturday happenings

Got up bright and early had coffee with Donna and went down to my office to browse the last couple of days of blogs I had missed. Adam was up about 07:30am and his mom came and picked him up for an Easter Egg hunt, Is it getting to be Easter already?  Yesterday was another gorgeous day with plenty of sun and temps in the upper 60’s. That changed today as it is in the 40’s with a high predicted of 50 and cloudy and looking like rain by this evening. Much better than snow.
I have been noticing a lot of the bloggers with 5th wheels have Chev/GMC duramax tow vehicles, I see several like Rick & Paullettes that are even the same color and could be a twin of ours. We bought ours in 2004 and it has about 75.000 miles on it and has so far been a great truck, other that one minor recall for the tailgate straps, it has never had to go back for any problems, Of course I change the oil and oil filter every 3000 and the air and fuel filters every 5000. I have had people tell me I am wasting my money doing this so often, but I can’t help but think this is money well spent on preventative maintenance. Would like to hear from others with their ideas. The only thing I have added is I took the original shocks off at about 6000 miles and bought a set of Bilstein gas shocks, they seemed to get rid of any bounce I had with the soft original shocks. I have a combined weight of about 18000 lbs when set up for a trip and the power seems adequate so I haven’t bought a chip for it. The only thing I miss since I drive Motorcoachs is the lack of a Jake brake. You get used to them when you drive bigger vehicles and I may look into some sort of exhaust brake down the road. Again if someone out there has experience with this on a pickup let me know your findings.
Here is the truck with our old 5th wheel in the background, This is before I put the Foldacover bed cover on it, It is really a great cover it folds forward when you want to tow and exposes the 5th wheel hitch, then when you want to cover it again it easily fold back and can be locked shut when the gate is up and interlock will prevent the tailgate from being opened until the cover is unlocked. Now I can put stuff in the back like groceries and they stay dry and can be unloaded without going in the truck.
This is our present 5th wheel a 2005 Coachman Chaparral,
The campground it is in is a private one at Lake Sherwood Mo. We own a lot out there and as a lot owner you have access to their campground. They have about 8 pull throughs and about 15 back in spots all hard packed graded gravel with wood curbing. picnic tables, bbq pits, and 30 amp power. A dump station and bathrooms/shower facilities are also provided. It is $5.00 a night for members and a member can bring a guest with their RV for a $10 a night fee.
We will probably sell this lot when we sell the house. But it has been a worthwhile investment for the last ten years as it gives you a great escape place within a 30 minute drive with 5 lakes and a swimming pool and swimming beach and clubhouse.
Well that’s about it for today, be safe out there. Sam & Donna

Friday, March 19, 2010

Home, At last.

Well Sam got back from his Kentucky bus run last night (Friday) it was an eight hour drive each way which when you put a lunch stop and a couple of rest area stops so the bus passengers can get off and stretch their legs every three hours or so makes for a ten hour day.
The college students he took down there were from Olathe Kansas, and the town we went to was Beattyville Kentucky. For those of you who wonder where that is it is located about 50 miles southwest of Lexington KY and is a very small town, I stayed four nights at the Travel Wise Inn in Beattyville and it was a facility straight out of the 60’s, It even came equipped  with a genuine key on a plastic tab for the door, no sliding card here. I must say though it was a family owned establishment and the owners were just good old country people who welcome you like family. Good thing as you could get pretty lonesome after four days with just a 50 foot motor coach and no car to take you around. No computer though so the blog had to sit from Sun till Friday. Oh well, The students spent their four days putting 12 hour days in rehabbing a house for a local church. What a worthy project and what a way to spend your spring break. Again just another example of some of the fine young people that are out there not getting the headlines.
Well with no computer even Rigg’s was disappointed he tried to send his Dad an e-mail but had no way to do it. So here it is a couple days late.
Hi Dad, I know you'll be home today so I wanted to catch  you up on a few things.
I have been a good boy, really.
I learned a couple of new tricks....no nothing like rolling over....this is much more fun.  I call it Fake Out Mom.
See I run to the back door and act like I have to go out....when Mom opens the door and grabs the chain I back up and
sit down just out of her reach....a few minutes later I do it again...sometimes I'll even run to the door and get my big boy bark
on like I hear something in the yard....boy it is so funny,...Kinda back fired the other day..the 2nd time I really did have to go and
she ignored me....thought I was going to pee on myself...so I started to cry and cry and she figured I really did have to go.
another neat trick is I go to my food bowl when she isn't looking, I grab some food in my mouth and then get close, but not too close.
to her and start moving my mouth and clicking my teeth so she knows I have something in my mouth...when Mom says, ok Riggins
what have you got now, I know its time to take off !....  She'll chase me and as usual stick her hand in my mouth....and then oh its
so funny, her hand comes out with nothing but a bunch of soggy kibble.  Gosh I wish I could laugh....but I sure can get a big smile .
Don’t know why Mom doesn’t smile, all she ever says is YUCK, Riggins !
Well, guess I'll save the rest for later....
I promise I'll be better tomorrow
Love, Riggins
After this trip I can see I might have to start looking for a laptop, Donna & I were going to wait till we got near selling the house and then buy two and load them with the programs we use on our desktop and then sell the office type stuff. I might just have to get one early just to take on trips with me, although the vast majority of motels I stay in have a computer for customer use.
Well that’s it for today Be Safe out there. Sam & Donna.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

A Blast from the past.

It’s Saturday morning, Donna gets to sleep in, Sam was up at 05:30am and had his first cup of coffee. Got the word last night that I would be taking the bus out Sunday for a Christian University that is going from Olathe KS to Beattyville KY from Sun-Thurs of this week, since it is an 11 hour drive from those two points and you can only drive 10 hours in a day I will relieve another driver who is deadheading to Olathe and then coming back and I will meet him at Kingdom City MO and then finish the trip to Kentucky in 8 hours.

I can only hope the Motel I am staying in has a computer so I can make a blog entry or this will be it till Friday. Donna doesn’t get much free time with her two jobs so she doesn’t make very many updates.

Now, the blast from the past, was looking in a box of old pictures and came up with these.

BingWeibelwith1946AutocarTankeratGulfOil This is Sam’s Dad, Bing Weibel in 1948 with an old Autocar Tanker he is filling with gas to be delivered. It was gas powered and Dad said it was a real dog.



Here is Donna in the 60’s with a 1955 Nash her Dad got her to get to school in, unfortunately she didn’t have it long, her Dad forgot to put antifreeze in it and the block cracked. Ooops. I little six, another dog.


                 Here is Sam on parade duty on his Harley about 1980, this was a 100mph machine. More Like it.

Wow, time flies when your havin fun. How about another Rigg’s adventure, he loves getting on the blog.

“Hey Mom why did I get doggie time out last night ?

How was I to know that yellow thing Adam had in his hand and was wiggling back  and forth was a pencil and he was

doing homework? I really didn’t mean to almost knock him off the chair.  It's just that yellow thing kept moving around and

I wanted it.

And that stuff you put on your lips last night, well it just smelled so good. Sorry if I pinned you to the chair and licked it all off.

Actually it smelled much better than it tasted.

Tell Adam I'm sorry for jumping on his back and pushing him across the room, I just wanted to play ball and he ignored me !

Tell Dad not to leave his cookies on the table, I just CANT resist a good cookie. Sorry Dad if you don’t have a morning snack.

I'll try to be better tonight” , honest.

Love Riggen.

Friday, March 12, 2010


Well, now that we are at the end of the week, Coffee was at 04:30am, Adams Mom picked him up from school yesterday so he is spending the night with her tonight so Sam doesn’t have to take him to school today. Donna is off to work at the truck company and then to the restaurant tonight. God Love her I don’t know how she does it. I worry about her heart continuously since she had her angio plasti last spring, 3 stents. wow!. I always thought that as big as i am and with the stress of police work I ran the danger of the BIG One but I never thought my skinny wife would have problems. Isn’t that how life is. Maybe I can take this time to really introduce you to the Love of my life, a true soul mate in all respect, how I have ever been worthy of this love and admiration I will never know, I never considered myself an attractive man, however my wife saw something in me and now after 32 years we still see each other as nest mates and I think the main answer is respect. You have to love and respect your partner.
                        Donna,the love of my life with her boy.
                   Yep even camping she’s up before the sun for coffee.
                         Sam & Donna on our Nashville vacation.
                            Sam & Donna on the riverboat.
                            We’re still dancing after 30+ years.
This lady, works her heart and soul out to get us to our goals, how many 61 year old women work two jobs 12-13 hours a day.
I was always the brawn and muscle of the outfit and in that pretty body was the brains, she could figure a solution, when I couldn't A good mother, and now a good grandmother, what more could a man ask for in life. I have been truly blessed by God Almighty.
Donna 2007
                              Still a really good looking lady.
            Honey when you read this, I just want to say I LOVE YOU…
Okay I have bared my soul to the world, but that is how I feel about my wife and soul mate, Donna. Sam….

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Another Train Thursday

Well, the usual , up at 04:30am, coffee, Donna off to the truck company at 05:30am, then make sure Adam is up and ready for Sam to take to school. I thought  maybe I would include some more train pictures of the models at the club.100_0964
This is not a club picture it is the Lionel O Gauge train from when I was a kid, we put it up under the Christmas tree. How many of you had or still have one of these, when I was a boy my Dad and Grandfather would fill the front room with Lionel's. What memories. To think they are almost 60 years old and still run like a top due to cleaning and lubrication. Not many toys last that long.
A street scene from the club,the yellow 55 chev 210 post is a model of Sam’s first car.
How about a roundhouse picture, yes the turntable will slowly turn an engine like like the real thing.
another roundhouse view.
the ole swimming hole.
Look’s like Sam’s parked the 5th wheel and the gang is waiting to take some pictures.
Always time for a volleyball game.P1010595
A Missouri Pacific freight train.
Nickel Plate 759 has a Rail fan Special at the station. This locomotive is at Steam town in Scranton Pa. Hopefully it will be rebuilt and returned to excursion service.
Well I hope this is entertaining to some , it is really a trick to get clear and sharp pictures of models that have a believing depth of field. Also we have surrounded the club layout with a Plexiglas fence to keep little and sometimes big fingers from causing unwanted damage.
Be Safe out there. Sam & Donna.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Wednesday doings.

Well another morning and Sam & Donna hit the coffee  early today, Donna couldn’t sleep and was up before 04:00am ,She got off to the truck company at 05:30am and Sam went down to the computer, Adam came down about 07:00am and announced he was up for the day, Like you can’t hear the patter of six not so little feet running down the hallway with Rigg’s all excited that his buddy is finely awake. Not much planned today but it dawned clear and the temp is supposed to be 70 degrees today so I will try to get something done outside today, the temps are supposed to start back down tomorrow so make hay while the sun shines.Haven’t heard yet this week from the Bus company but it was slow last week and I was hoping for an overnight run this week. Here is a story from the past from Rigg’s
He also wants you to see his newest picture.
              Such an innocent face,maybe it should be a mugshot.
Mom, I'm not a brat, I'm just adventurous and mischievous
You know I can't tell time , 300 in the morning so.  Yeah , I know I probably should have played
with Duckey, or my bone, or my rope, or the beheaded Kittykat...but they don’t get your attention.
And you were IGNORING me....just sitting with your coffee, wrapped up in your robe and watching TV.
Now why couldn’t I keep the goggles, you know I might need them, some of things I chew could get in my eyes?
And no I don’t think I looked ridiculous running around with deer antlers sticking straight on in front of me ( and I really
didn't mean to run into Zep with them, sorry Zep).....after all what did you want me to do with them balance them on top
of my head....I'm no deer I cant do that.
Now as far as the box of Christmas cards...you know its never too early to start planning.
And about the measuring spoons, I can explain ( I just cant think of it now )
The spatula ??  Didn’t you want breakfast ?
You know if you are going to put something on top of the hamper so I cant open the lid it really should be
heavier than an empty basket.
Yeah, I know there was more, but I'm tired now and going to take a nap, I was up early.
also, Mom you have to remember the doctor said you were to have more exercise, so actually I'm just helping
with your cardio workout.
Before I forget I want to welcome Al & Kelly from The Bayfield Bunch, and also Wandering Willy or Bill. Both signed on as followers. I have been following Al &  Kelly for about a year and I have learned a great deal from both of them I have always enjoyed photography and since changing from  35mm to digital it is like starting out again. Al is the one who directed me to Picasso 3 and I thank him for that. Willy was discovered as he was starting his Mexico trip I enjoyed all his adventures, even some of the ones I’m sure he would rather forget.
Most of my photography and videography has been train related in the past, I’m not giving that up but I may expand my horizons once we start traveling.Well That"s about it for now. Be Safe out there. Sam & Donna….

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Wide Open Spaces

Here it is Tuesday, Donna just left to head to the truck company, I am sitting here thinking about some of the blogs I have been reading lately about being in the dessert and out in wide open spaces, it kind of reminds  me of when Donna & I decided to move from a subdivision in Florissant MO. out to Dardenne  Prairie which at that time was prairie farmland. I was still working on the police department not having retired, so I had a 40 mile commute each way, and Donna’s drive was, and still is 50 miles each way.
We bought a nice brick ranch 4 bedroom home, with 4 baths, a dining room and finished basement. A total of 2500 square feet of living space sitting on 2 acres, with a small pond in the front.
At the time there was just three of us with our son Andy in about the 6th grade.
Lot’s of room and as I used to say you could go outside naked in the back and nobody would see you. Directly behind us was over 250acres of farm land, complete with cows and corm and beans. MY son would go over there and get muddy and he would have to take muddy clothes off at the back door before Donna would allow him inside.
I will put a picture of what it looked like from a plane in 1993, and what it looked like in 2006,
Feise Rd02-93a
the road in front was two lanes and ditches for drainage on both sides, the pond was stocked with bass & Blue gill and Andy and his friends would swim and fish all summer.
Here it is in 2006.
1418Feise Rd2006view
The road is widened to three lanes with sidewalks,I had to fill the pond in as I was afraid of somebody else’s kids getting in there and drowning, and homes have grown up in the over 600 acres of tillable land that was in front  and back. Wonder what kind of seeds they used to grow houses, I’ll bet Al & Kelly from the Bayfield Bunch would have loved this happening in their front and backyards.
So much for progress, it has given us a lot of incentive to think about full timing.
Hey, how about another Rigg’s adventure, he is always ready to let you in on his thoughts.
But Mom what’s so important about those things you call clothes....I don’t have any and I get along just fine.
After all you throw them in that white thing, isn’t that what  you call a trash can, do you just throw them away anyway?
And as far as  your panties, yeah I like them best they have such pretty colors. ( and you run a little faster after me
when I steal them )
And I just cant figure Dad out.....he complains about taking out the trash, but when I take out the trash he yells at me. What
does he want ? Help or no help ?
When Dad was gone no one was using that side of the bed, so why cant I ?  I like laying my head on you, it makes me
feel good to know you are there....Ok, sniffing your head and pulling on the hair might have been a little out of line.
Only reason I was standing on your stomach was I thought I heard something and I didn’t want you to get up until I was
sure it was okay.  And no I don't weigh as much as you, well almost, guess I'd better cut down on the kibble.
And yes, I meant to chew up Tigre Tiger and leave little plastic orange pieces all over the living room....I didn’t like
they way he looked at me and that silly grin, well what else can I say...
You still love me right Mom
Love, Riggins
That’s it for today, Be Safe out there, Sam & Donna.

Monday, March 8, 2010

Another new week.

Boy did the weekend come and go quickly, I never sat down and did a blog post all weekend, We were kept busy though, We had Adam with us all weekend and it was the first sunny and mild weekend we have had, temps reached the low 60’s both day and no wind and beautiful sunshine, the kids played from morning to night in the back yards and on the neighbors trampoline. Just watching all that energy being expended tires you out. Last night Donna ,Sam & Adam went out to try a new restaurant out, It was Sunday so we decided to splurge and not cook. We went to Max& Erma’s in Lake St Louis Mo. The meal was fine Donna got a steak, Sam A burger and Adam a corn dog plate.The only complaint was Sam’s fries weren’t as hot as he likes them but what can you do.

                                     Adam at dinner.
                                    Sam&Donna at dinner.
After dinner it was home to unwind. Sam unwound so good he was asleep in a couple of minutes.
Monday looks like it will be a nice day also. Donna just headed for the truck company and Sam is waiting to get Adam up and ready to take him to school.
Rigg’s has been up to his old self, I think I mentioned in a previous blog that I had contact with a lady I went to high school with, Saturday I found my old high school yearbook, from 1966, I was reading through it and left it on the kitchen table. While I was down in the basement Rigg’s got a hold of it and luckily it was not chewed to badly .The cover was torn a little and some teeth marks but I was able to repair it without damage to the inside. Luckily Donna heard him and stopped it before much damage was done,
Rigg’s could tell that Mom & Dad were kind of upset with his for this, so he sent his Dad an e-mail.
Hey Dad, Are you still mad at me?
Now Dad I really get confused…..You sit at the table and eat, so isn’t anything on table food?
I saw the white thing and had your scent all over it…..didn’t know its what you call a ‘book’
I cant read, even though Mom has gotten on me about taking Adams books.  Anyway how was I to know that
It was over 40 years old and was something called your high school yearbook.  Boy there were some funny looking people in there.
Were you able to fix it okay ?
Now Adam said my breath is  minty fresh, isn’t that a good thing.  By the way who are the Girls Scouts and why do they bake cookies?
Thin mints huh…..does that mean I’m going to get skinny ?   Oh, well, they were good.  Got any more ?  No more doggy breath if I get more.
Honest I’ll try to do better tomorrow
Love, Riggins
That’s about it for now, Be Safe out there and we will see ya soon, Sam & Donna.

Friday, March 5, 2010

It’s Friday

It’s Friday, not much different around here though, Donna is off to the truck company and then the restaurant, Sam has some chores around here today, I went out to the 5th wheel since it was almost 50 degrees here yesterday, I took the TV converter down and tried to hitch it up but I couldn’t get the menu screen to come up, I hope it isn’t a bad unit, the trailer was 37 degrees inside when I went in so I fired the furnace up and in about 30 minutes it was up to 57 degrees so I guess the furnace is in good working order over the winter. Looked around for any evidence of humidity but it looked good, a month or so I will take it out of mothballs and get it ready for our trips. We have started thinking about getting rid of some stuff prior to selling the house. Donna asked me to go on the internet and see what the value of my Jim Beam police car decanters were, There sure is going to be a lot of stuff to get rid of that you collected over a lifetime, but like I told her those decanters have just sat on a shelf in the family room entertainment center for 30-40 years and there just won’t be storage room for them in my trailer, I also will have to drastically thin my HO Model Railroad collection, I told her basically I would keep a couple of Locomotives and my Lackawanna Phoebe Snow passenger train, along with my radio throttle and the rest would go, I will either place a garage sale aid at the club or local hobby shop and get rid it that way. Funny how you spend a lifetime buying stuff that you have to have and then there comes a time when you have to get rid of it. I guess anyone who has decide to go fulltime has made these hard choices and they surely are things you can live without, maybe some of you have suggestions on how you went about this.
How about a Rigg’s story.
                “Honest Mom I’m trying to be a good boy”
Sorry Mom how was I suppose to know you didn't want to brush your hair at 330 in the morning. I only had the brush
in my mouth and jumped on you so I could help you get ready for work and I wasn't really running away from you I was
just happy  you were up.
Now about that carmex stuff,....it says its for lips...I just forgot that dogs don't have lips and I only put teeth marks all over it
because I was trying to get the cap off !
Adam plays with those toys why cant I ?
sorry but I didn't like the channel you had on, you know what they say No news is good news.....really I was just trying to
see if Lassie or pets stars was on.  Yes I did run away this time, you are always hogging that remote.
No I don't know who I was going to call at 400 a.m. but you never know who else might be up. and no ,dog slobber on a phone is
not disgusting besides I hadn't had anything to drink yet so it couldn't have been that wet.
You bet I'm fast, you thought you could drop that underwear into the hamper faster than I could grab it......fooled you.
Hey when you got out of that thing that makes you all wet and were bent over with a towel at your feet how was I to know
that my nose was that GD cold...you smelled nice .
Well, you said you were going to work so guess its time for my nap, I'm a little tired.
Well that’s it for now, See Ya, Be Safe out there, Sam & Donna.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Am I getting old

We were up and at em at our usual 04:30AM, Donna was off to the truck company. Sam is waiting to get Adam up and off to school.
Got a nice e-mail from a former high school Classmate who found me either through Face book or my blog on the internet search, I didn’t know it but Google puts your blog on their search engine. Boy how time flies she said they had an old address for us from where we lived 25 years ago in Florissant MO.but after that we dropped off the face of the earth. Anyway she said the 45th reunion was coming up in 2011 and she wondered if I would be interested and also she had a list of former classmates if I wanted it, she also said that about 45 have passed away out of about 220, wow do the math, that's almost 25% .Time sure marches on.
Anyway now that I have been reminded of my own mortality, I decide maybe I would go ahead and see how some of these people are doing to help kill some downtime when I am not driving the bus.
Oh and I received a Digital converter that I ordered off E-Bay, Wal-Mart had them in the cataloged for $49 but none of the stores stocked them anymore. I went on E-Bay and found a Magnavox for $29. It arrived after a week, I needed this for the 5th wheel since we carry a direct TV box and two dishes but sometimes you can’t get a satellite fix. Hopefully it will just be  a backup.
Anyway that's it for now, not much planned for today but supposedly it might get into the upper 40’s today and then the 50’s for the weekend. Until next time, Be Safe out there, Sam & Donna.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Wednesday Already.

We were up at the normal 04:30AM, Sam always waits a few minutes until he can smell the coffee and then stumbles into the kitchen tripping over Rigg’s who is just so happy that his Dad is up and moving. A cup or two  of coffee generally get the old motor running and then the day starts, Donna will hit the door for the truck company at 05:30AM, Then Sam will check the blogs out until 07:30AM when it time to get Adam up for school, 08:15AM they jump in the truck and fire up the diesel and head off to drop Adam at school, only 1 mile away, remember walking two mile like I did. Boy the kids have it easy today. Tonight Donna has restaurant duty so it will be the boys alone for supper, Grandpa gets to duty as chief cook and bottle washer.
Hey were in luck today, how about not only a Rigg’s letter,but a restaurant adventure. Here we go, first we’ll here from Rigg’s.
“Dad are you still mad at me?
First off I thought you'd be proud that I could from a sitting position leap strait up onto your pedestal bed...you know it's kind of high.sorry if I landed right on top of you, I tried to scramble off by kicking all my feet, but guess its different than when I went into that lake kicking legs don't work too good on a bed.And honestly I wasn't trying to hit you in the face with my new toy, I was just trying to fluff it up in case you wanted to sleep with it.I was just trying to save you the time of taking a shower this morning when I sat on your stomach and licked your face and arms.By the way what does G.D., Riggins mean ? and yes I know I am a son of a b...after all I am a dog.
Anyway, hope your still not mad.
I'll try to be better tomorrow (have I  said this before ?)”
Now from Donna at the restaurant.
“One night at the restaurant my new table consisted of an elderly couple.  Of course when I walk up to a table
I smile and say good evening, may I get you something to drink while you look at the menu...they both ordered a soft
drink.  When I returned I set down the drinks and laid a paper wrapped straw by both drinks.  The elderly gentleman opened
the wrapper, looked at me and in a very harsh tone said " Here take this dangerous thing away! ".....totally dumbfounded I
took the straw and walked away.  A few moments later the lady came up to me by the register and said "Honey, I am sorry
for my husbands attitude, but he doesn't see well any more and you have clear straws so he winds up poking himself in the eye."
Fortunately I was able to container myself until I could get to the kitchen”. Donna…
I have been remiss in that I have not welcomed our latest followers,
Donna&Dennis, Randy&Pam Warner, Cyndi, Rollie&Gina, FreelyLivingLife, and Mike & Pat McFall.
Thanks so much for visiting our blog and I hope you all enjoy it as much as we enjoy yours.
Anyway that's it for today, like the old Sarge said, Be Safe out there.Sam & Donna

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

A slow day, so here’s a previous trip.

Sam is off, Donna is off to the truck company, Rigg’s is till moping a little ,we think he misses his buddy Zep. I am going to share some pictures of a trip we took to Scranton Pa. which is Sam’s hometown, Sam & his son Andy & his grandson Adam went to visit Uncle Rick and Aunt Wendy, and while they were there. They made the mandatory visit to the National Park Service Steamtown Site. Which is on the site of the former Lackawanna Railroad Scranton Yard and Shops. Sam’s Grandfather worked there and as a boy Sam and his brothers spent time there on visits with Grandpa to see the trains when it was a busy working railroad.


         Adam with his bear friend at the PA Welcome Center

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   These are some photo’s taken at Steamtown National Park.

You really don’t have to be a train nut to enjoy this place, It is about as close as you can come to seeing how steam locomotives were rebuilt and used, they are currently rebuilding several and there were three in operation while we were there, I believe on selected weekends they have steam powered excursions to the Pocono Maintains.

Also there are plenty of campgrounds and state parks in the area and in the Pocono’s around Scranton, but wait till summer as the summer weather is great you can swim during the day and still have the windows open at night and not use the A/C. Not to many days in the 90’s. Just a nice area for a summer vacation stop. Lots to see.

I guess that will be it for today, Be safe out there, Sam&Donna.