Tuesday, December 14, 2010

New Monitor, Clothes, and Decorations, Dec 11-13, 2010


Since we had returned the HD monitor to Wal-Mart after I could not get it to work, a new monitor (Viewsonic 2450W/WM) was on my wish list.  We found the one I wanted through Wal-Mart online, they would ship it by UPS to our site here at the Rainbow’s End RV Park in Livingston.  We ordered it and here it is, arrived as planned while we were gone yesterday afternoon visiting friends.


My space now as it looks now with the new monitor tucked inside the cabinet.  So now we can watch TV and I can also be on my computer.  On order is a Vesa wall mount for the back, Bob will have to build in something to support it.



Sunday morning we attended the First Presbyterian Church here in Livingston.  We thought we were attending the contemporary service, but it was very traditional.  Next Sunday we are looking forward to their Christmas Musical Celebration.


Founds Bob some new clothes, jeans and a western shirt to go along with his new Texas drivers license!


Also found an replacement medium plate from Corelle to replace the one that was sacrificed during my driving test.



See my Christmas angels plus one reindeer.



Christmas has come to our coach.  All the angels are hung on this tree with care. 








This was my first homemade angel, she is over 25 years old.

Below I am picking up my mail for the first time from the Escapees mail forwarding service – side window, between 1-4, Mon through Friday.

Received a package (Thanks Betty Lou) and the notification from the US Postal Service about our change of address. 


Since we are going to be here for a few weeks, decided to cover the tires, not an easy job with the air bags down, only about 1” of clearance over the tires.  Bob ended up putting me out of my misery and finished the job.


Even the coach outside looks Christmasy!


Saturday, December 11, 2010

Visiting friends, Dec 10, 2010

After reading a friend’s blog we had met in Quartzsite a couple of years ago, Connie and Manny’s blog, I realized they were not far from Livingston at an RV Park in Cut and Shoot attending a rally.  Also Mark and Sue and Richard and Patsy were also there.  So I sent an email to Connie and before we knew it we were invited to come Friday afternoon and evening for a gumbo dinner being made by Mark and Sue for the RV club.


Mark, me, and Sue in the kitchen.


Sue with two large pots of “Gumbo”, her mother’s recipe.


Sue and Patsy preparing the okra!



The serving line with Richard, Manny and Sue, slicing the Beer bread she had made.




This photo is for Mark, who loves food photos! The gumbo and beer bread was delicious!!IMG_5810

Nice photo of Richard and Patsy and...


Manny and Connie.


We had a great afternoon and evening, but before we knew it, it was time to head back to Livingston (50 miles).  The RV park in Cut and Shoot was all decorated for Christmas, absolutely magical!


Passed Texas Class B Driving Test in the Coach!! Dec 10, 2010

Yes, when I called the DPS (Department of Public Safety) this morning, the person giving driver’s tests was there so our times were scheduled.

We arrive at the DPS office, parked the coach on the side of the street, facing town, as we were instructed. I chose to go first, just wanted to get it over with. The test giver was a lady, she had me check the lights and the horn (that was fun, the horn part). Then we head off towards downtown, first a right turn with lots of traffic, did well, then a set of RR tracks, slow down and look both ways, continue on to the frontage road of Hwy 59, passed some road construction, then another right turn, across RR tracks again, then another right turn onto Washington St back towards town. Then it happened…on that turn either I hit a curb or my right rear tire slipped into a deep pothole, as the coach lurched side to side and the cabinet door over the sink opened up and all I heard was crash…bang…breaking dishes, yikes what did I do, and now what do I do. Well not seeing any area to easily pull over, I just kept going with the driving test, she (the tester) just kept giving me directions on where to turn continuing the test. Another left on a quiet street, back up about 50’, then another left, another left, then back to the DPS office. At some point I told here I was really sorry for what was happening back there (in our kitchen area), she said she felt bad all of our dishes were breaking, I then said well, we have lots of paper plates. She then suggested that I could get some new dishes for Christmas. After all that I DID PASS!!!

After the test, I stayed in the coach to clean up some, only broke 1 bowl and 1 plate for all that noise. Not bad for all the racket I heard.

The tester then went into the office to finish her paperwork, told Bob I had passed and he might want to come out to the coach and help me. Boy was he surprised. He had just fixed that door latch yesterday, so either the door was not completely shut and/or the Velcro securing strap failed, it might not have been secured.

Then when Bob took his test, the tester warned him about the fateful corner I had messed up on. I say that was not fair! All in all he passed also.

At this point we turned over our California drivers’ license and were given our Temporary Texas Licenses, the originals should arrive in 6-8 weeks. Our new photo does show on the temporary license, they had us remove our glasses for our photo. I have worn glasses since I was in 5th grade, my face felt naked.

Whew, are we glad all of the tests are over and we can now just relax and enjoy Livingston.


Above is the DPS office in Livingston.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

No driving test today, Dec 9, 2010

This morning I was to call to find out what time we could take our driving tests…well about 9:30 I called and was told to call tomorrow as the person doing the tests had to stay in another department.  I guess that is small town America with  Livingston’s population being 5,000.  So tomorrow we will call again and see if it is a go.

So I spent the rest of the day changing addresses with credit card companies, banks, utilities for the California house, Directv, Passport-America, Campclub USA, Coachnet…….  I did all of them online except two, which I found their handy dandy tear-off forms.

Called our vehicles’ insurance company, Explorer RV Insurance Agency in Richfield Ohio, to change our policies from  CA to TX.

Tomorrow, hopefully, we will be taking our Texas Non Commercial Class B driving tests, then or otherwise we be traveling to Cut and Shoot, Tx (about 50 miles) to see some friends, Manual and Connie, Mark and Sue, Richard and Patsy.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Almost a Texas resident, Dec 8, 2010

Since our arrival at Rainbow’s End  Escapees RV Park on Monday we have been busy.  On Tuesday we obtained our Texas address from the Escapees Mail Service, also took a tour of the grounds.  On the tour we were able to meet the founders of the Escapees organization, Joe and Kay Peterson, we all got our heartfelt hugs.  They were a delightful couple.  Part of the tour included walking through the Mail Service facility.  Did you know the Rainbow Drive addresses have their own zip code, 77399, the mail comes directly from Houston and does not go through the Livingston Post Office?

In further preparation of changing our domicile to Texas, Tuesday we visited the Assessors office and asked what forms we needed, then checked out the DPS office where you obtain your drivers license.  Since each vehicle needs to be inspected, we found an inspection station and the Explorer passed with no problem.


Wednesday was a busy day.  First we had to take the coach for its inspection…but a little delay as the Motosat was up and we had some lights blinking and it would not stow.  Finally found out we needed to update the UCB (upper control board), then turn off then on and low and behold it worked. 

Another passed inspection.  Then took the coach back to the RV Park.


Next was to gather the needed documents and off to the Assessor’s Office to get our plates.  Success!


Now, all that was left for today was to take the written portion of the driver’s exam.  We were told all we needed to know was
Chapter 15, of the Texas Driver’s Handbook and they were right. Most of the questions were right from their example questions, but a few were not.  I ended up missing two out of twenty questions, Bob got all of them right!

Tomorrow because our coach weighs over 26,001 pounds, we both need to take a driving road test to obtain a non-commercial Class B driver’s license.  So today, after we both passed the written exam, we were told to call in the morning to schedule our driving test.  Hopefully the road test will happen tomorrow so we can both relax!!IMG_5803a


  • Looks like at least our vehicles are official!

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Spending time in Fredericksburg, TX, Dec 1-5, 2010

Dec 1 – Wednesday

When I wake up on Wednesday morning (1st), my monitor is off, IMG_5764but should be on.  It only just flashes on when I turn it off, then back on again.  Guess it is toast…so we head off to the Wal-Mart to purchase another monitor.  It is either a HP or an Acer, so I chose HP.  Came back to the coach, made sure we could get the monitor to work and it did, Bob even remodeled the space where it goes.  I then go and install their provided monitor driver, BIG mistake.  From then on almost as soon as the CPU was turned on and starting IMG_4715to come up, the monitor would go to sleep!!  After several hours of no improvement, we decided to pack up the new HP and return it to where we got it. 

I am able to use the new TV for my monitor, but when I do there is no TV watching and the new TV is very large so my poor neck gets a crick in  it.



Dec 2 – Thursday 

IMG_5767Today was our day to visit Cranky Franks BBQ. 

We had forgotten how good it was.




 I had BBQ pork and Bob had beef…delicious!!!






Also a first for me today, bought my first pomegranate and was able with an instruction sheet prepare it and get the edible fruit called arils out.



The arils were great in our evening salad.




Dec 3 – Friday


With us changing our domicile to Texas, I thought these boots would be great.


Found this sculpture below on our drive to Kerrville.  It was huge!





Friday evening we went to the Christmas Parade in Fredericksburg.


This longhorn had flashing lights covering its horns-quite a sight.


Dec 4 – Saturday

The rest of the slide topper story.  We found a shop in town that makes mattresses and upholstery, they rest itched our topper for under $15.  With little effort Bob was able to reinstall it back on the RV.  So far we have had two out of three toppers seams fail.  Just waiting for the third one, so far it is good.



My sister sent me a couple of Ultimate Cloths.  They claim to be lint and dust free, cleans streak free with just water…and they are and they do!  Would you believe, they even got me excited about cleaning!!  Our bedroom closet doors are mirrors, they always look dusty and streaked from prior attempts at cleaning, but with one cleaning with this cloth and water, they sparkle.  



This evening we went downtown to look at the Christmas lights and displays.  They were awesome.


                                                                                          Tomorrow we are driving to Livingston Texas where we will be going through the process of changing our domicile from California to Texas.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

My Dad’s 101st Birthday

Howard Woodyard w blackbird and redbird- abt 1930

This is my Dad, Howard Theodore Woodyard, b. 12/1/09 – d. 10/19/82.  He was named for two presidents, Howard Taft and Theodore Roosevelt.  This photo was recently sent to me by my sister Katherine who received it from our cousin Hellen, her mom, Alice, was one of my dad’s sisters.  These two horses were named Black Bird and Red Bird, taken probably around 1930.  My parents were married in 1935, they kept it a secret for a year as Mom was teaching school and then if you were a female and married you could not teach.  One of Dad’s sisters, Ellen, is living in Ohio, she is 102 1/2 years old.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

The National Museum of the Pacific War, Nov 30, 2010


Today was our day to visit the remodeled Museum.  The admission of $12 for me and $10 for Bob (he is a senior) got us tickets good for 48 hours.  You follow a maze through newly done exhibits.  Not much of what we had remembered when we volunteered here in Dec 07-Feb 08 was still there.  I enjoyed the new displays, loved hearing the snippets from veterans telling their memories.


This is the upper portion of a door from the USS Arizona superstructure.  The visible dark line is from the fuel floating on the water after the attack.  Above the oil line see the egg-shaped hole was cut by divers to see if there were any survivors inside this compartment.


This fellow was catching his 40 winks.  No, it is not Bob.



Thought this collector card from bubblegum was interesting.






Here I am taking a photo of a “Val” the Japanese Dive Bomber.  It is now on display inside the Museum. When we were here in ‘08 it was in storage just out in front of where we parked the coach.

This is a Fat Man bomb casing for the atomic bomb dropped over Nagasaki, August 9, 1945, it now resides inside the remodeled museum.


In 2008 it was outside near the Combat Zone.fatboy

See the “Top Secret” stamp marked out.


We are now in the Combat Zone, here is the TBM Avenger.


Next the PT Boat.


Then the redesigned fighting area.  They were working on this area when we were here before.



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