Riggins with little brother Charlie and little sister Sadie.


Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Tuesday Thoughts.

Started the the day with coffee with my bride, she then went to the truck company, but not before saying she would be heading for the restaurant afterwards because somebody needed off and they asked her to be the hostess tonight. That’s two days this week she has gone in for extra duty.

We are having another nice day with sun and a temp in the low 90’s, 91 right now humidity is 39% so it isn’t a killer.

As I said last week we will sit it out for the holiday weekend and then after our company from Canada departs we will plan a weekend with the kid’s at the Lake. They should be getting here in a week and Donna has made time to take a couple of vacation days so we can see the sights together.

My two furballs are lying at my feet on the rug next to the kitchen table as I sit here typing. not a care in the world, They will instantly come back to life in a few minutes when Nicole gets home from school, both wanting their kisses and hugs at the same time.

Thinking I might just throw some Spaghetti and sauce together for supper tonight, Since Donna won’t be here and Nicole’s Mom is working the night shift it is easy and Grandpa & Nicole like it.

Haven’t had the camera out much lately, I will have to do some train shooting or something  just to stay in practice. Of course I haven’t been making as many runs in the truck since fuel went up so it stays here in the garage a lot. I will have to make a run for gas for John Deere tomorrow though.

Anyway I hope all is well with all of our blog friends. Be safe out there. Sam & Donna…

Monday, August 29, 2011

Monday Meanderings.

Was up early and had coffee with my bride before she left for the truck company.

It was a sunny nice day with a temp of about 85 today, nor sign of any rain or bad weather, what a difference from what the east coast has just put up with. But it could have been a lot worse, I know this doesn’t mean much to someone who got flooded out, but with only 18 deaths from the entire storm cycle in all those states , I think we were lucky in many case.

I had to break down and make a grocery store run today, I figured out why the managers are so friendly and always smiling, does anyone get out of a grocery store for less than $100. I try to go once a week but sometimes it twice. We feed 4 adults and one child all week and another child or 2 on the weekends. Boy am I glad none of them drink beer.

I heard somebody say something about an empty nest, what is that?  Donna & I have never had an empty nest. I look out the kitchen window and see the two wren houses that have not had an empty nest since April and are still going strong. Must be something in the air or water around here.

Which reminds me Nicole is loving her new school which is great. Having raised all boys up to this point and having an honor roll Grandson I am so relieved that it appears my Granddaughter is going to do well and enjoys her school.

In all honesty I never really was interested much in school until I was out of high school and got motivated to fly in the Navy, My Grandfather then set the course for my future. After that I never found my continuing education in Law Enforcement to be difficult.. 

Tonight was a cube steak night. We both like them and they make and easy meal without a lot of hassle for when Donna comes home from work.

Hope everyone is having a great week. Be safe out there. Sam & Donna….

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Saturday/Sunday Mumblings.

First of all I want to Welcome our 119th Follower, JESSICA & HARRY-PLANNING FOR RV DAYS WITH JESSICA & HARRY.I have been following their blog for some time now so take a look. They are hoping for a 2013 launch date for full timing, I hope all goes well with them.Welcome Aboard I hope you enjoy the antic’s around the Weeb Ranch here.
Saturday was a slow quiet day at the ranch, no Grandkid’s or noise and I spent most of the day checking up on Hurricane Central about every hour to see how Irene was doing. It went right over Brick NJ. which is on the ocean just west of Seaside Heights NJ, All the beach communities were under a mandatory evacuation order and some of Brick also.
Donna went into the restaurant later in the afternoon and so I just watched and waited for news.
Sunday morning early, I Got an E-mail from my Grand Daughter Allie in Brick NJ.
(:We're okay. It was too hyped up. It was just really windy and rainy. Some places flooded but we're all good. Thank you. :).
Haven’t heard from my Son Sam Jr. in NYC but according to the news all the flooded streets are way south from him as his condo is up around 38th St. It looked like there wasn’t to much wind damage just lot’s of water.
Look’s Like Scranton PA dodged the bullet and just had some rain and higher than normal wind. That make it all present and accounted for with the Weibel Family, Thank You all out there for your prayers and concern, you can always depend on your friends in blog land for support.
What were the doggies doing on this weekend.
Sadie & Rigg's08-16-11a
     They kept a watch out for Nicole & Adam.
     Rigg’s on guard duty next to Dad’s chair.
Guess where you can find Rigg’s if you don’t see him for a little while in the kitchen.
             He sneaks off to Dad & Mom’s Bed.
We are all relieved that the storm out east is winding down and hope that the losses will be minimal. Was I worried, you betcha, Saw a hurricane at sea and it bent up steel on an aircraft carrier like it was aluminum foil. The fury of Mother nature is not to be challenged, she will get her way.
That’s about it for now, waiting for Donna to get home she had another private party this morning at the restaurant. Other than that not much going on here. Be safe out there. Sam & Donna..
Late Addition to Sat/Sun Blog.
Just got an e-mail from my Son Sam Jr. In NYC, I will share it.
(: “Hey there everything is fine here wasn't that bad at all. Am just relaxing with a cigar and beer watching battlestar galactica”:).
Have a good nite
That makes us all here in Dardenne Prairie breathe easier, Thank God for keeping my Sons’ and families Safe. Sam & Donna.

Friday, August 26, 2011


We were up at 04:30AM you know the usual routine, coffee and then Donna off to the truck company, and then tonight the restaurant.

I had another Lazy Day, but I was intently trying to glean all the information I could about Hurricane Irene, I guess I have a vested interest with one son in New York City, Two on the New Jersey Coast, not to mention a Grandaughter and a sister all directly in this storms path.

Make no mistake about this is a very dangerous piece of weather especially when you live a mile from the Atlantic Ocean and they start talking about a storm surge of 8-15 feet, ( a wave)that sure brings a lot of unstoppable water ashore in a hurry.

My Son Andrew saw me this morning and said your worried about Sam & Tim & Rick, aren’t you. Of course I said no they are grown men and know how to take precautions to keep their families. safe, But the truth of the matter is only a fool would not be intimidated by the forces possessed by these storms. We saw it here at home in MO. with this years tornadoes,

MY Son Sam e-mailed Donna from New York City and said everyone was sent home from work and most of the skyscraper offices are empty. His Condo maintenance force is taping all windows with heavy tape and told everyone to bring everything in off their balconies, All Public Transportation, Subways,busses, and taxi’s will be suspended over the duration of the storm, flooding in subway terminals is expected.

Haven’t heard from the NJ tribe but I am sure they are busy getting the hatches battened down and I know the phone service is poor on the entire east coast.

Hear we sit in Dardenne Prairie, 87 degrees sunny not a trace of any activity on the weather maps, it’s like were in another world set aside from this danger.

Anyway the storm is moving at a relentless pace northward and tomorrow will tell how bad it is going to be.

Should be a quiet weekend here at the Weeb Ranch the kid’s won’t be here so the halls will be silent for a couple days.

Everyone say a prayer for those that are facing danger from the weather this weekend. Be safe out there. Sam & Donna…..

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Thursday Happenings.

Up early for coffee with my bride, then she went down and strapped herself in to her escape for the flight to the truck company. As long as I was up anyway I took the dumpster down and then took my good truck to the filling station for a tank of diesel fuel.

Came back and put it back in the garage and that is where will stay until I need to go somewhere, nothing planned for today, and I found out that Nicole is going to her Dad’s for the weekend and I haven’t heard from Adam so it looks like the fiver will sit out the next couple of weeks until after Labor Day Weekend is over.

Short blog today nothing going on and I am watching the east coast weather to see what the hurricane is going to do.

Everyone be safe out there. Sam & Donna…

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Wednesday Musings.

Got up early and my bride and I had coffee, Then she was off to work in my good truck to the truck company. Today was alternator day for her car and it was done about 10:00AM.

Not much going on, it is a hot one again today at about 97 degrees,

Donna sent some cool pictures of the Blue Angels I will share with you.


             Is this a great country or what?

securedownload (1)

Tuck it in about 6 inches tighter number 5 man.

securedownload (4)

Where’s the tummy rub we were supposed to get.

securedownload (9)

You take the east bound lanes I’ll take the west.

securedownload (5)

Did I suck the gear up fast enough for you that time?securedownload (7)

                   “Big Bird” the support plane.

securedownload (10)

For all the US Navy Vets out their especially Aviation Vets.

I can’t help but think of some of the great times I had in the Navy, some of the crazy things we did like flying under all the bridges on the Hudson River starting with the Verrazano Narrows, and ending with the Tappan Zee. Then deny, deny when  the phone started ringing back at our home base.Didn’t do the East River as we knew someone with a camera would be waiting for us on the way back.Only needed about 20 feet of clearance to clear the water and the bridge overhead but still thrilling to anyone who saw it.

Ah to be young again. But sometimes it’s fun to be and old timer and just have the memories to relate to your Grandkids.

Trying to decide since this is the weekend before the holiday weekend if I should take the fiver to the Lake for the weekend, I’ll have to get a hold of Adam’s Mom and see if he’s available and if Nicole wants to go.

That’s about it for now. Be safe out there. Sam & Donna..

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Tuesday Thoughts.

Up early with my bride and had our coffee, then at 05:30am, she was off to work in my good truck. Yep last night 2 blocks from home hers quit again, I went to her rescue and got the Escape in the garage, and the battery was dead, it’s only two months old, so I put it on the charger overnight, This morning I tested it and found that the battery was good but the alternator had quit putting out, I remembered replacing the alternator once so I called Auto Zone and sure enough I had, and the replacement had a lifetime guarantee so I picked up a new one today and will have it changed tomorrow.
I got a call from my sister in Pa overnight someone had put a rock through her car drivers side window and stole an IPod out of it, The IPod didn’t work so it was a useless crime. The car was parked right in front of the house, my sister says some really low life people moved in up the court and since they moved in one house has been burglarized and her car damaged. That’s a sorry thing to hear because I remember my Mom & Dad enjoying evenings sitting on the front porch and all the neighbors walking by and now the neighborhood is going down hill.
Want to take a minute to welcome our 118th follower PATTY-DAN-BELLA & BONEHEAD IN SPIRIT, I have been following there blog so get over there and check it out. I hope you all enjoy following the antics of our family as we head to our goal of full timing in our 5th wheel.
Just heard from the love of my life, the shining star in my life at night, my true soul mate, whats-her name?  Oh yeah Donna , she just called and said don’t worry about cooking they are having the Arby’s Special so we will have Roast Beef Sandwich’s tonight. Is this a great country or what? God bless America….
Well that’s about it for today, another hot and sunny day on the prairie in MO. Hope everyone is enjoying their day, like we are here on God’s little couple acres at the Weeb Ranch. Be safe out there. Sam & Donna…

Monday, August 22, 2011

Monday Meanderings.

Up at 04:30AM with my bride for coffee. Then she was off to the truck company.

I had an easy day ,did a couple loads of wash and took my son to Warrenton Mo.

Weather wise it was in the 80’s and nice , a little cloudy but no rain.

Both of the furballs are sitting by the back door waiting for Nicole to roll in from school, it doesn’t take long before they know in their body clocks when school is over And she is due in. I think they also hear the school bus stop out front even though it is several hundred feet away.

I am going to make Sloppy Joes and a potato dish for supper tonight, just what I like simple easy and tastes good. I asked Donne in an e-mail what she thought she would like and gave her a list of about a half a dozen things and her first pick was Sloppy Joe’s.

On a forum I follow about the railroad my Granddad worked for someone posted a picture they found and asked if anyone knew where it was taken, Myself and one other person knew, since I had taken pictures off of the same bridge when I was a teenager. Besides an old car shops building, Everything related to the railroad, all the tracks and other buildings and the bridge itself are gone now. It was pretty neat though to identify other landmarks in the back ground and then label them on the old picture.

Other than that just another slow day in Dardenne Prairie, tomorrow I might go out and go over the grass again, I will go back to weekly cuts now that the heat wave is over. I have also decided to give up on the battle for the driveway lights, About 20 years ago I installed low voltage lights about every 15 feet along the one side of our driveway. That’s about 15 lights, in the last 18 years since my son has had a driver’s license, nobody seems to know how or who, but I have replaced just about every one of them after being run over, some twice or more times. Now they don’t even make the low voltage lights and the big push is for solar powered LED’s. Since most of my driveway is shaded these won’t work. So I am going to remove all but a few around my trailer pad.

Less work and no aggravation.

Hope everyone is having a great week. Be safe out there. Sam & Donna..

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Saturday/Sunday Mumblings.

Had a pretty good Saturday, Donna only had to go to the restaurant in the afternoon so she got to sleep in a little, We had all three Grands for the weekend, so the house was busy to say the least, It rained on and off in the morning so they played inside, then at about noon the sun came out so they went bike riding, later in the afternoon it clouded up again, so the evening was spent in the house.

Sunday was a great day sunny and nice, Donna and I were up at 06:00Am, and then about09:0AM she had to go in to the restaurant for a group that requested her. Business has been slow like it always is at this time of the year. people are buying school clothes and not eating out in sit down restaurants as much, hopefully it will pick up soon.

The kid’s were on their bikes again and got to stretch their wings as we allowed them to ride as far as Prairie View Elementary where Nicole goes to school to play on the playground the have set up their. There is one street to cross but they have a signal with pedestrian lights and buttons so we trusted them to use good judgment and walk the bikes across.

Tonight when Donna gets home we will have some cube steaks and potatoes for supper, It’s an easy to prepare meal and everyone loves them.

Not much going on in the Prairie this weekend, no church picnic’s or other social events just a nice quiet weekend.

Hope everyone is having a great weekend. Be safe out there. Sam & Donna…..

Friday, August 19, 2011


We were up and at em at 04:30am while we were having our first cup if coffee a huge thunderclap that shook the house hit, and that started a thunder storm, it was almost like a mortor round went off in the back yard near the house,pretty close to me. Poor Nicole was woke up and was scared to death she said she would feel better if she got up on Grandma’s bed with Rigg’s, So her and Rigg’s went back to sleep while Grandma and I had coffee and she got ready for work. Lucky for us Rigg’s isn’t afraid of storms. Even the police dogs had to get used to loud noises like gunfire or storms.
Want to Welcome out 117th follower, JULIE, didn’t see a blog for here, so if you have one post it in the comment section so we can pass it on. I hope you enjoy hanging out with us here at the Weeb Ranch and reading about life in Dardenne Prairie MO, In the Heartland of America. Is this a great country or what?
Anyone that reads AL"S Blog, will know every once in awhile he says he puts his size 12 in his mouth, I don’t agree. but maybe it happens.At least he will say he is sorry if he notices it. Well I don’t have a size 12, but my 10’s fit just nicely and I made the same error the other day in a comment reply to one of my followers. SANDY-WHERE ARE THE DIXONS TODAY sent me a comment after I replied to her husband Jim about a comment that was posted that the person making the comment(who I assumed was Jim) was also a Train fan and enjoyed it when I posted train things, Well I fired off a comment to Jim that I was glad to find another fan in blogger land and if he got out this way we would go see some trains. I also stuck my foot in my mouth further by saying Sandy & Donna could find some girl things to do like comparing recipes or something while we were chasing trains around. Imagine my surprise when I got an e-mail from Sandy saying she was the train aficionado in the family. Boy was I embarrassed . I have met several female train fans on my journeys, but they are far and few between, then after rereading my comments I thought maybe my comment about doing girls things might have sounded a little chauvinistic although it was not intended that way. So apologies all around for just assuming things and not thinking about how the things I say in my blog could be taken out of context.
Moving on to new business, I went down the garage at 08:00AM where Donna’s Escape sat with a forlorn long on its grill because she was left while Dad’s big diesel truck got pulled out of the bullpen to fill in on the Friday commute. I started my search of why the air conditioner wasn’t working by starting it up and putting it on, the first thing I noticed was the knob for the switch that control what function (defrost,heat,vent, A/c,Max A/c) wasn’t doing anything and when I pulled it off it was broken inside. I took a needle nose pliers and turned the shaft two clicks to the left and the compressor kicked in and the air got cold.It had been in the vent position when the knob broke so Donna was getting 90 degree outside air all the way home yesterday. Just to be safe I took the dash cluster for the A/C and heat out and checked the electric and vacuum plugs in the back to the switch to make sure all were tight and then put it all back together and checked all the fuses and the compressor belt, you don’t want to fix something and two days latter have it quit again for some other reason. I couldn’t believe our good fortune and said a prayer of thanks to Our Lady of Car Repairs.
Went to the Ford dealer and they had a knob for a 2002 Ford Escape in stock, Cost $12 US ,Yeah I know it’s sounded high for a piece of plastic. But they own the patents. Car fixed and Donna will be happy.
So PAUL,,PAUL,HELEN,JODIE,COCO,AND SANDY looks like I got lucky to on an A/C repair job like you did with Helen’s Town Car.
That’s about it for today, just waiting now for Nicole to get home from her first week at a new school, I know she loves it, but what kid wouldn’t like a nice new air conditioned school.
Be safe out there. Sam & Donna….

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Thursday Happenings.

Up early, coffee with my bride and then she was off to work at the truck company and then the restaurant.

The birthday girl, Nicole was up early and her Mom took her to McDonalds for breakfast before school, Grandma left her a Birthday card with some butterfly barrettes inside, she loves butterfly’s.

About 08:00AM since the dew point was low and it was already 75 degrees I went out and John Deere and I started on the grass. We finished up about 10:00AM and by then it was 89 degrees already, supposed to hit the middle 90’s again.

Donna called and said the A/C quit on her car going to work today, I will have her take the truck and have a look at it tomorrow, hope it is a fuse or something simple, hate to have to pay for a leak, or a cracked part (accumulator or condenser). The Freon alone just to refill it is around $50, about $25 a lb. I remember when Freon was $1.00 a lb.

Short post today, not much going on. Nicole is going to her Dad’s house for a small family party there.

I was thinking of going to the Lake this weekend but haven’t heard from Adam this week so I will put that on hold.

Be safe out there. Sam & Donna…..

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Wednesday Musings.

Was up at 04:30am with my bride and we had coffee and cake, Yes we had a little early birthday celebration for Nicole last night. Since she we will spending her real birthday Thursday at her Dad’s for a small party. The butterfly was a delicious half white/ half chocolate cake with just the tastiest icing, no wonder Donna gets so many requests for cakes from her co-workers and friends. Thanks goodness I don’t have any friends or she would have to bake fulltime. It is over half gone, boy we went through it. I even had two small pieces of white cake since I figured it would have less sugar. Hey you only live once, and something is going to get you, no one get’s off the planet alive.
Today while it was still in the 70’s I went down to the garage and jacked John Deere up and measured the blades, it’s been scalping one small area about an inch deeper than the rest. Sure enough the center blade was bent so I took it off and replaced it with a spare one I have. It is almost impossible to bend them back to shape when they bend and it is easy to bend one if you get close to a stump or curb. The bad part is these were the set I just bought last month and so the one didn’t last long, the good part is I have about 5 spares now that are resharpened and still have plenty of life left in them so I at least have a full set of spares when one set gets dull. I took it out the back and cut an area that had the highest grass and it is giving a nice level cut all the way across again.
My Son is going to go out and cut when he gets done with a job he is doing today.
The two furballs sure are lost with the kid’s in school they lay around and mope until Nicole hits the door at 03:30PM the they are both all excited and won’t hardy leave her alone to change out of her school clothes.
Don’t know that this retirement thing is all it’s cut out to be, the truck hasn’t left the garage in two days, and my only outdoor time has been to take the dumpster down and fetch the mail and walk Nicole out in the morning, and then the little grass work today.
If money wasn’t so tight I would hitch up and go to Iowa to shoot trains for 3 or 4 days but the fuel alone is over $125 just for up & back. I remember when fuel was $1.00 and I would make the round trip for about $35. The campground went from $10 a night to $12. but that still includes water and 30amp elect. and the dump station. Plus it is scenically located right along the old Santa Fe  Transcontinental Main Line.
Oh well, one of these days. I’d rather go south for a couple of weeks when the weather gets cold with Donna, than waste money on just me.
I see where my friends AL & KELLY-THE BAYFIELD BUNCH have renamed their new recruit Eve to Pheebe, good idea Al we’ve always given names to our fur guys when we brought them to a new home, They pick it up real quick and how can they forget you guys anyway. It will be an easy one for me to remember since my all time favorite passenger train was the Phoebe Snow, of which I have a model dedicated to my Grandfather that worked for that railroad.
That’s about it for now, hope everyone is having a good day out there in blogland, Be safe out there. Sam & Donna…

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Tuesday Thoughts.

Up early and had coffee with my bride before she left at 05:30AM for the truck company,

Want to answer a question and correct a mistake in my weekend blog. JUDY-TRVELS WITH EMMA asked what Biscotti was, Well ALI- THE WANDERING WORKENTINS is right it is a fancy Italian cookie usually found around the holidays, , My Grandmother used to make them. However the word I should have used was my kid’s aberration for spaghetti, Bishsketti. Also known as asketti, and skabetti,  by various sons of mine when they were little. Hope that clears up the mystery.

Last night Nicole & Grandma finished her cake, Grandma showed her how to color the icing and put it in little squeeze bags with tips for styling, then she took a piece of paper and showed her how to make little flowers and edging. The she told Nicole to let her imagination decide what her butterfly should look like, she said she would use her three favorite colors, purple, green & blue., Grandma said she did the whole cake by herself, it took a couple hours but she wanted it to be her creation. I told her she is being promoted from Decorator Third Class, to Decorator 2nd Class. Here’s some pictures.


                         Mixing the colors.


                           Doing the outline.


                            Making Progress.

Nicole08-15-11h                                Almost finished.



                      The finished Butterfly.

We are really proud of the patience and creativity she showed and the only help she needed was making the antenna and it really looks yummy.Not bad for a nine year old.

Since we always have a supply of the materials needed to make desserts I told Donna now if she decides she wants to make a surprise cake for her Mom & Dad it will be easy to teach her how to make the white icing and mix the cake mix together.

It turned out to be a nice day in Dardenne Prairie, cloudy on and off but no rain and the temp is right at 80 degree’s.

Hopefully tomorrow will be dry and my son is off and said he wanted to do the grass instead me as he said I keep ruining it. He likes those sideways stripes where I just cut a circular pattern with John and don’t make as many passes.

I think Donna really enjoyed being able to teach Nicole her baking skills, she always wanted a little girl and now she is finally doing some of those things she wanted with a Granddaughter.

Well that’s about it for today, Nicole enjoyed her first day in her new school so we will see how the second day went shortly. Be safe out there. Sam & Donna…

Monday, August 15, 2011

Monday Meanderings.

Up at 04:30AM with my bride for coffee, Then she was off to the truck company.
Before I post this and forget it for the third day, I noticed a couple day ago I had two new followers and then forgot to post it. so here we go BOB He has a blog listed and welcome aboard BOB . The next is DIANE she also has a blog so check them out, and I hope both Bob & Diane enjoy following the bunch here at the Weeb Ranch on our journey to full timing and whatever misadventures we have on the way. I’m sure Rigg’s and Sadie will provide us with material also.
After Donna left for work Reveille was held at 07:00hours for Nicole since this was her first day of school and she had to be at the end of the driveway at 08:14AM to catch the bus. She just had enough time for a shower and a quick breakfast, before we walked her down to wait for the bus , she asked if she could ride her new bike to the end of the driveway and I said sure I’ll walk it back for you, she loves her new bike.
               First day on bus number 75.
Yesterday Donna & Nicole started the birthday cake, I said it would have a picture of a butterfly on it, BURPP!!! Wrong. It is a butterfly, Donna made a pattern in the shape of a butterfly and they put the base coat of white icing on last night, Tonight they will mix up a big batch and color some of it different colors and do the final coat of icing. I will post a picture when it is finished.
Nicole helping Grandma with the white icing.
Rigg’s had to have his teeth brushed and Donna gets the job of doing it ,he hasn’t mastered using his paws to hold the brush yet.
         My what big white teeth you have Rigg’s.
Rigg’s is really easy to brush and he likes the taste of the toothpaste so the job is not a chore.
Donna said since her and Nicole would be cake decorating when she got home that I was to make something quick and easy and without a big mess for supper tonight. I guess it will be a Bishketti night for us that’s about as quick and easy as it gets and only two pots to wash and rinse the dishes and put em in the dishwasher.
Not much else going on in Dardenne Prairie,  hope everyone is having a good week. Be safe out there. Sam & Donna…

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Saturday-Sunday Mumblings.

Saturday just kind of rolled by a very quiet day at the Weeb Ranch, no Grandkid’s and even the dog’s were pretty good. Donna went in to the Restaurant about 04:00PM she had a special group coming in for a big party.

Sunday we were up about 06:00AM and had our morning coffee, Donna went back in to catch a little nap. Nicole came back from her Dad’s about noon and since she is the birthday girl this week, she is going to be nine on Thursday. Grandpa said let’s go to Walmart and just look at stuff, your birthday is coming up. So off we went, I kind of steered her to the bike aisle and they only had two girls 20 inch bikes left, I asked her if she had a choice what bike she would she like,  the pink one or the robin’s egg blue one, she said the blue one immediately and I was glad because it had little fenders on it and the pink one didn’t, I thought her eyes were going to fall out when I lifted it off the rack and said give it a test drive to the checkout, “Oh Yeah Happy Birthday”. We also got a red taillight and a license plate for it.


                       Nicole and her new bike.



                   Grandpa loads it in the truck.



Grandpa putting the taillight and license plate on.

Nicole goes back to school tomorrow and Adam has his first day Thursday. Boy summer sure flew by, I am sure glad I got those week long stretches at the Lake and the trip to Illinois and Wisconsin in.

Donna is starting a cake for the birthday party and told Nicole she could help decorate it, I think it is going to have a butterfly on it. I’ll get a picture of it when they get it done, she is also researching how to make a gluten free cake for when Kevin & Ruth get here since Ruth has a gluten free diet.

That’s about it for the news from Dardenne Prairie in the heart of Middle America. Don’t know if Donna will be running a second section to the Blog today, if not Be safe out there. Sam & Donna.

Friday, August 12, 2011


Up at 04:30 AM with my bride for coffee, then she was off to the truck company, and then the restaurant.

Another slow day, we had sun until about 03:00PM and then the rains came which was good and it kept the temps in the low 80’s.

Being Friday I decided on a homemade pizza for supper, in case your hungry hears a sample in picture form.


                               Before baking.


          The finished product, and yes it was good..

The kid’s, Nicole and Chris are at their Dad’s for the weekend and Adam is with his Mom for the weekend so it will be a quiet weekend.

Rigg’s was having a great day watching the pizza go together. Probably with the hopes of a piece of crust in his mind.


                        Got his attention.

Not much else going on here at the ranch, We got good news to day, Donna’s Sister in Law Kathy who has been battling cancer for the last several years had to come off chemo for liver cancer to have her Gall bladder removed, This was done today and they looked at her liver and no sign of the cancer was found, We are all thrilled with this reverse of fortune.

Hope everyone is having a great week. Be safe out there. Sam & Donna..

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Thursday Happenings.

Up early and coffee with my bride, then she was off to the truck company and then the restaurant.
It was a beautiful sunny 85 degree day just like summer should be. Today was a complete zero as far as doing anything, The truck never left the garage, the sum total of work was going down and getting the mail and bringing the dumpster back up after it was emptied. Usually a I just stop and hang it on the hitch on the back of the truck and drive it up the drive, but today I just walked down and pulled it back up.
KEVIN & RUTH had a nice download for Streets & Trips with all kinds of POI’s in it. So I downloaded it and installed it in both laptops, this thing has all kinds of places, campgrounds, Wal Marts, rest areas, you name it. Even Railroad Museums. What they won’t think of next. For all of you with Streets & trips it’s a must have and it’s Free.
Nicole had a lay around the house day, I think she stayed in her PJ’s all day playing with dolls and playing Mom to Rigg’s and Sadie, who of course love any attention they get.
Haven’t a clue what I will make for supper, maybe Nicole will give me a suggestion.
That’s about it from the Weeb Ranch in Dardenne Prairie,It’s like time is standing still, at least for another week until school starts, I also have to get to Walmart as Nicole’s birthday is next week and Adam’s Is Sept 8th. Each will have to be gotten a special present from Grandpa.
Everyone be safe out there. Sam & Donna…

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Wednesday Musings.

Up at 04:30AM and had my morning coffee with my bride, then she was off to the truck company and then the restaurant.

It looks like the heat wave has broken here in Dardenne Prairie after temps in the middle 90’s all last week, Today it stayed in the upper 70’s with a nice rain shower in the early afternoon and then the sun came back out it’s 79 degrees right now, the forecast for the rest of the week is sunny and lower 80’s which is about right for this time of the year. The rain put an end to my plans to cut grass today, and then my son came home and said leave it for a couple more days it’s just to short and if you cut it now it will ruin it. So since he is the Lawn guy in the family I’ll take his advice.

Not much doing today Nicole is playing with Sadie & Rigg’s and her dolls and stuff.Grandpa piddled on small projects in the garage. nothing major more like straighten up and tweak this or that.

Can’t believe I just got back from a week at the Lake and I am already thinking of maybe a two dayer to Iowa to do some train watching and photography.

The big news for us here at the Weeb Ranch is we will be having visitors the week of Sept 11th, KEVIN & RUTH & WHISKEY will be stopping for a few days to visit on their way across and south in the USA to Mexico. We are all excited, first we can show them a little about our area and then we can here about there travels to Mexico. I know we will share a beer and wine together also. Sadie & Rigg’s will be able to meet Whiskey. We want anyone to know that if they are crossing the country and want a place to stop we can accommodate most rigs , we have 30 amp elect and water, just let us know and we will leave the light on for you. Plus were 40 miles from downtown St Louis and a lot of attractions.

Meeting other bloggers and Rv’s is always a real thrill and we have never been disappointed with the fine people we have met. Rigg’s is always the scene stealer though and makes up for any dull spots in our personalities.

Got to start to think about supper, for the rest of the clan, last night was a big pot of Penne Rigatoni and hamburger sauce. So who knows what tonight will bring.

Hope everyone is having a great day I know AL & KELLY are having a great day making their new pup Eve a new member of the Bunch, She’s a real cutie Al & Kelly. Be safe out there. Sam & Donna…

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Tuesday Thoughts.

Up at 04:30AM with my bride for coffee, checked the blogs for awhile. Later in the morning I went with Samantha & Nicole to register for school she will be going to Prairie View Elementary which is about a block west of us on our street still in Dardenne Prairie, it is a beautiful school, only about 5 years old , it’s where Adam went when he lived here. I had to sign an affidavit that Nicole was living with Donna & I at our address.Prairie View Elenentayryschool07-02-10
                      Nicole’s New school.
Then it was to the grocery store, for some things that we were out of, like milk, between my son and the grandkids we go through 2 gallons of white milk and a gallon of chocolate a week.
When I got home I got the package out that arrived while Adam & I were camping, that contained my laptop mount for the truck. I wanted something similar to those in the police cars and this company supplies many police departments with theirs. It is a simple and ingenious mounting kit using hard 1/4 inch pipe and fittings covered with a plastic trim and with a quick disconnect to take it out fast.
I put the GPS module for the Streets and Trips, inside a little stuffed doggie on the dash where you wouldn't see it and it works great.
               It will swivel to either side.
I mounted the base inside the one drink cup holder.
It turned out to be an easy and sturdy mount and it was not very expensive at $40.
Not much going on this afternoon, I think tomorrow if it is cool enough John Deere and I will have a date. It’s been two weeks and the grass is slowly coming up. Although the high temps have really slowed it down now.
After looking at the pictures and seeing the strobes I left in the back window when I retired as Chief, my truck looks like a police vehicle again, but having the big map screen and the ability to use the laptop when you stop for gas at wi-fi hotspots, found out Lowes has a wi-fi hotspot that you can hook up to on the parking lot. I’ll bet there are a lot of free spots at big box stores that no one knows about.
That’s about it for today, waiting for Donna to come home from the truck company and I will start supper soon. Be safe out there. Sam & Donna…

Monday Meanderings.

We were up at 06:00AM , Adam got up at 08:00AM so we started to get the fiver ready for transport, Adam helps with raising and lowering the front stands when we hitch up. He also makes sure all his clothes are packed, and nothing is on the floor where the slide comes in , then he reminds Grandpa the TV antenna has to be cranked down.

We got it all packed up and drove it over to the dump station where the tanks were emptied and flushed, Grandpa also empties the fresh water tank so no water sits in it in between trips, same with the water heater when he gets home.

After the drive home, which is only about 15 miles, we put the trailer on the pad and Adam helped with unhitching it. also getting his bike unstrapped and off the back rack. Then it was carry the clothes in the house and we were done, A fine finish to a weeks camping vacation.

Adam spent the day and his Mom picked him up at 06:00PM.

Donna brought home some sub sandwich’s and we had a nice supper.

Hope everyone had a fine day it will take a little while to catch up on what I missed on the blogs for the last week, be safe out there. Sam & Donna…

Monday, August 8, 2011

Sunday Notes.

Up early, Adam slept in until about 09:30AM, made a quick run to McDonalds to port the last two blogs and check my mail. Then we came back and got ready for another day in the water. While we were just fussing around the trailer Adam saw the  battery powered plastic Wave runner so we inflated it, and he discovered,  and decided he had out grown it. I bought it for him when he was about 5 years old and this is the first summer he hasn’t bothered with it at all. In what I thought was a really nice gesture, he said Grandpa let’s give it to the two little kid’s next store, (His friend at the next campsite had a brother and sister about 4 and 5 years old).I said if that’s what you want to do It’s okay with me, and he said sure they can have a lot of fun with it at the beach like I did. So he asked the parents next door and they said sure, Boy the two little ones were thrilled. Donna & I have always encouraged him to put the toys he no longer plays with in a bag and then we recycle them at Goodwill for some other kids to get some use out of them. It’s nice to see he is doing the same thing now without our encouragement.


        Grandpa & Adam’s Excellent Vacation.

The afternoon was spent at the pool it was  a great day  with the biggest crowd kid’s, and all of Adam’s friends showed up and they played nonstop from Noon to 05:00PM.It was a little warmer at about 95 but the water felt good, the rain the day cooled it down a little so it was nice to get in instead of warm water. All told a good last day at the pool, we are spending the night and then packing up and going home in the morning, Adam’s Mom will pick him up after work tomorrow so he will spend the day at Grandpa’s. Rigg’s and Sadie will be happy to have us home.

That’s it for now, be safe out there. Sam & Donna….

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Donna's Dessert of the day

Hi everyone, wteaked a new recipe last weekend and turned out very good.
Again 0 cholesterol and 6 grams of fat per muffin.
Peach muffins
3 cups flour                      
1 tbsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
2 cups sugar
1/4 cup oil ( i use canola--healthier)
1 cup applesauce
3/4 cup eggbeaters
2 cups peaches

great if you have leftover fresh peaches, peel and dice.  can also use canned peaches
but make sure you drain the liquid before and after dicing.

oven 375...
large muffin pans. you can use the large muffin papers, but they are expensive and I am cheap, so
I use spray.
Mix oil,eggs, & sugar. In separate bowl combine flour, cinnamon, baking soda and salt.
add to oil mixture in batches, mix until moist. Fold in peaches.  Pour into muffin pans.
Bake about 25 minutes, or until golden brown and pick comes out clean.  Cool about 10 mins
and turn out into plate.

If fat is not a problem, you can eliminate the applesauce and increase oil to 1 1/4 cup.

Hope you try this and enjoy.
I'm trying a new way to make bread pudding low fat and low cholesterol. Will let you know how it turns

Saturday Mumblings.

Was up at 06:00AM, had my coffee and watched a sunny day start here at the campground. Looks like about 5 more rigs came in last night, Even a neighbor right next store in site 14 who was here before and has two kid’s that Adam plays with , He will be happy. The plan is to go to the Lake beach,and meet Adam’s Mother and Aunt Robin, and his two cousins about noon.

Adam was up at 09:00AM as soon as he heard about his friends he was out the door like a shot. Don’t know when I will be able to post these last two posts since I haven’t ventured out the gates in two days. Here are some shots from the beach from Saturday.




                   Adam & his Mom. She was checking to see if he was properly covered in sunscreen.


Matt, Aunt Robin, Rob, Shana(Adam’s Mom).

Even with one rainy day this week has flown by m we got here Wednesday early stay until Monday afternoon., I know Adam is really enjoying himself  with his Grandpa, sometimes we just sit and talk, and Grandpa will tell about things in life and my experiences and it is so neat to see his face as he sits and listens and asks question, His Aunt Robin wanted to know if one weekend I would take the boys camping as they had told her I was one of their favorite Uncles and they thought Adam was so lucky to have such a neat Grandpa. I told her sure, why not, I raised four boys so three will be nothing.

Isn’t it funny as you enter the final years of your life on this planet, you finally realize that there is a place for you to be a role model for these young men, Wow what an awesome responsibility to live up to. I never thought of myself as someone special or talented, but both of these young Moms said the boys really think of their Grandpa & Uncle as a special guy who has done so much in life. I told her most of it was a lot of fun too. Flying, motorcycling, law enforcement, trains, traveling, RV’ing, you name it . they are all fun and I enjoyed doing all of them.

I hope you all are as lucky as me and have the company of your Grandkid’s and Niece's & Nephew’s, while your with them share a memory, give em an Indian head rub, or a chuck on the chin. Just be silly with them, Like Donna has always said Sam has always been at ease around children, after all they are all the same age in mind. That my friend’s is a gift from God, not everyone is lucky enough to have it.

Hope you all have had as great a week as we did. Be safe out there. Sam & Donna.


Up at 06:00AM, Adam was up at 08:00AM. It was cloudy with a forecast for rain. We made a run to the house to get a couple things, and on the way back it started a light rain. Nothing like a rainy day at the Lake, Adam was a little disappointed until I pointed out in over two weeks of camping this summer this was the first rainy day. Also the temperature stayed about 75 degrees. which was great for a break.

We pretty much stayed around the campground but did go down to to beach for a little while. Here is what a rainy  day at the Lake looks like.




the water was 15 degrees warmer than the air temp.

Here is an example of Home Owners Boards run amok.clubhousesigns08-05-11a

Signs at the Clubhouse at the beach. Looks like they only have room for one more. Is this really necessary. Also my favorite is there, No Pets, even though there is a leash law and pick up after your dog rule. Entirely to many layers of rules for my taste. But it is a private community with a very low or non existent crime rate, I think the Board is just spoiled because they are used to getting their way on everything.

Anyway that’s my rant for today, I know I shouldn’t complain  and run for the Board and try to make a difference. But I have no interest in politics after being around them all my working life.

Supposed to be sunny and hot tomorrow so it will be back to normal here. Some more campers are setting up so Adam will have more friends tonight. That’s about it for today, Everyone be safe out there. Sam & Donna……

Friday, August 5, 2011


Was up at 06:00AM my little buddy was zonked and spent until 9:00AM in the sack, He even wanted to stay and watch morning TV while I ran to a Walgreen’s for a refill on one of my pill’s.

Thursday was a full pool/Lake day, We left the campground at 12:30PM, I could see Adam was slowing down around 04:00pm and at 05;00PM I said hey how about we head to the trailer and make us some supper and he was more than willing. It turned out to be a nice day with the sun ducking in and out the the temperature stayed around 85. perfect for a day at the Lake, Not to much direct sun either, and they pull had a lot of Adam’s friends there. Here’s a few flicks I shot while I was in between dips in the water,







After supper another trailer pulled in and he headed over to the playground on is bike to meet the new neighbor kid’s, They only played a little while and he came back and said he was tired and was going to put a movie on and could he make his bed out, this was at about 07:30PM, I said sure, and he set his bed up and I told him I would put a train movie on in the bedroom and check on him and let me know if he was going out. About 30 minutes later I checked on him and he was asleep, Boy see what all day in the water does to a boy, To be honest Grandpa was beat too so I had a beer and went back to my movie and put the timer on 1 hour and never saw the TV go off.

Ah the Lake, Air temp 80, Water temp 90, and Beer temp 34 degrees, Life is good, There should be a good showing of campers show up Friday during the afternoon as the weekend is forecast to be cooler and nice with maybe an isolated shower to keep things cool.

Friday will be more of the same, Adam & Grandpa are getting browner and through the use of plus 50 sunscreen, no sunburn, I remember in my lifeguard days we would mix a concoction of iodine and baby oil and use it as a suntan oil.Yeah I used to get brown, but what I didn’t know at the time I was taking a big chance with skin cancer, one of the girls that worked with me has been fighting it now for years. Maybe I was lucky.

Since I love the good ole days here’s a train picture to stir up some Alzheimer affected brain cells


Lackawanna 4-8-4 Pocono on a Pass train at East Stroudsburg PA. Early 1950’s..

That's about it for today. Now I have to just find a place to post this. Be safe out there. Hey Grandma & Rigg’s, you guys are missing out. it’s great out here.

Don’t leave home without it. Sam & Donna….