grandson mason

grandson mason

grandson jaxson

grandson jaxson

Sunday, May 31, 2009

17-31MAY09 - Monroe, WA

On Monday, 18MAY, Dan left on a two day business in Santa Rosa, CA. This allowed him to drive by “our” old house in Novato, CA, located on the abandoned Hamilton Air Force Base. Unfortunately it looks like half the beautiful Spanish style houses, with all oak floors, hand tiled fireplaces, tile roofs, wrought iron fixtures, are empty and slowly falling apart.

Upon Dan’s return the Seattle area began to experience some great weather. The month of May demonstrated the fickleness of Seattle weather. The rain that fell in the first half of May made it the 3rd wettest May on record; even though the second half of the month was completely dry and set records for high temperatures on some days. In fact, Memorial Day was the first dry one in 12 years! But remember some Seattleites call June, “Junuary”.

Since we are often the only ones in Monroe State Fairgrounds RV Park, we hang out with camp hosts Bob & Karrie when not working on our property. One day they brought home a new puppy, Beasley a Papillion terrier. Beasley thought Gumbo was just one big chew toy, and wouldn’t leave him alone. Gumbo would tolerate Beasley’s antics for several minutes and then snap at the puppy. This would send Beasley running and hiding for about five minutes, only to come back and start aggravating Gumbo again. One day a million dollar Prevost custom RV showed up at the campground. We have seen a few of these in our journeys (and we are not impressed), but this one was truly different in that it had custom “spinner” wheels on all six tires! Proof once again that having money doesn’t equal good taste.
Saturday of Memorial Day weekend cousin Paul Peters, Shannon & the boys, Spenser & Ryan, dropped by the RV before the big races right next door at the Evergreen Speedway. We’re talking monster trucks, figure 8s races with school busses, boat demo derby, roll over contest, Mr Dizzy jumps a RV in a RV, and fireworks! It sounded so good, that after snacking on brats, chips & dip, Dan joined them at the races. Memorial Day Monday we headed over to their place for a relaxing and enjoyable BBQ. During this time we continue to do maintenance work on the property. The latest lethal farm machine we are using is called a bush hog (aka rotary cutter).

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

15/16MAY09 - Kittitas, WA

Friday, 15MAY, we took off to see Bonnie & Steve Kiesel who live outside of Kittitas, WA. For more on Dan’s cousin Steve and wife Bonnie, see the below BLOG entry:

Unfortunately, it turns out Bonnie would not be home since she was leaving Thursday with Steve’s oldest sister, Kathy, to check out the casinos in Reno & Tahoe. But Dan wanted to talk face-to-face with Steve about getting electricity on our property, because Steve was once a lineman for the county (or was it Wichita Lineman?). Steve wasn’t entirely free for the weekend, since he was playing RV host/security at the Ellensburg fairgrounds for a western art show that was happening that weekend.

Even though he was semi-occupied, we still found plenty of time to discuss the proper way to get electricity to our property, socialize, enjoy a catfish dinner at the Moose Lodge, and just relax and enjoy the excellent late spring weather. Steve & Dan also found time to check out the latest brews at the Iron Horse Micro Brewery. For some reason they both really like the Irish Death? Unfortunately the brand new Ellensburg Distillery, one door down from Iron Horse, was never open to sample their wares (probably a good thing). On Saturday night we attended the Art Show cocktail party followed by the Art Auction. In our opinion, it looked like the prices paid at the auction were much less than what was being asked for at the Art Show?

Sunday it was back to Monroe area so Dan can depart on business trip to Santa Rosa on Monday morning.

Monday, May 18, 2009

01-14MAY09 - Monroe, WA

The weekend, 03MAY, after Dan’s return his brother Shawn, and Shawn’s significant other, Cindy, came by the RV for a BBQ dinner. Turns out Cindy’s uncle used to own the Evergreen Speedway, which is right next door to our RV site on the Monroe Evergreen State Fairgrounds. If you read our BLOG last summer, you will remember that we were treated to the sounds of numerous “events” that occur at the track on Friday nights, Saturday nights, and sometimes Sunday afternoons. Unfortunately, Cindy no longer has inside connections to get us free tickets. Anyway, it was good food and good reminiscing, and we all agreed to try to get together throughout the summer.

A week later it was Mother’s Day, so Dan took Corrie for breakfast at the Sultan Bakery, believe it or not located in the town of Sultan, WA. The bakery is a NW institution noted for their fresh baked goods in the morning (most popular are the huge cinnamon rolls, drowning in melted butter). On ski trips to Stevens Pass on US Highway 2 it was not unusual for Dan and friends to stop at the Sultan Bakery for baked pastries on the way up; and burgers and beer at other establishments on the way down. Even though the line was already out the door, we lucked out and got a table quickly and had an excellent breakfast (including sharing one cinnamon roll).

Earlier that morning Dan's cousin, Rick Lee, had called with an invite to come over to his and Sharon’s house in West Seattle for a Mother’s Day BBQ for his mother, Mary Ann Lee. Mary Ann is a sister of Dan Sr and therefore Dan’s Aunt. In the past when the two families would get together Dan would hang out with Rick and his older brother Steve Ruttner. Often Dan would be invited to spend the weekend at Grandma Jean’s (Dan Sr’s mother) house on Capitol Hill in Seattle along with Steve and Rick. Back in those days they would wander all over Capitol Hill, never thinking about kidnappings or other nasty things happening. Also, cousin Rick was a roommate with Dan for a short while, in Dan’s first ever house also located in West Seattle (see our BLOG for 05JUL08 for details on the house).

Anyway, turns out Rick had also invited older brother Steve, and little sister Kelly (along with her husband Les Baker and children). So it was like a little impromptu mini family reunion. Rick BBQ’d burgers, Steve brought some pork wrapped in bacon, and Sharon prepared many excellent side dishes. All too soon it was time for everyone to head back to their homes (or RVs). Hopefully, we will stay connected throughout our summer stay in the Seattle area.
Also during this two week period we continue to work on our property, but the intermittent rain makes it difficult at best. If the weather permits we like to spend two to four hours a day trying to prepare it to build on it. Unfortunately, there have been some days where the rain prevented us from doing anything. Our latest project was to rent a stump grinder to remove a few stumps from where our drive way has to go.