I'm as old as this flag, but we both SALUTE you & our fellow Americans!

I'm as old as this flag, but we both SALUTE you & our fellow Americans!
Please watch the PHOTO SLIDE-SHOW before you read about where I now make my home in Nevada. WELCOME TO WHERE I LIVE AND WHY I DO!


THIS IS A BEAUTIFUL VIDEO - We live about 2 hours from the Hopi Nation.

I visited the web-site Nancy Snider sent to me, and I answered those questions:

Have you seen a Kansas sunset? Have you seen an Arizona rain? I answer 'yes' to both. The sunset blazing as it sets in Nevada? Aha - and how; today it was just that, and I've lived in Nevada for 8 years now.

Have you drifted down a bayou down Louisiana way? Yes, I have. Have you seen the fog in San Francisco Bay - many times. Have you heard the bird calling in the Carolinas? You betcha - both in North and South!

Have you heard the call of the Niagara Falls? More than once - and splashed with its cold mist; amazed at its power! What about that Massachusetts shore? More than once; dining on huge deep-fried clams; walking around Boston, and noticing Plymouth Rock didn't seem to be all that big.

I saw New York - more than once; amazed at the beauty of the many who co-exist in this place where Lady Liberty stands guard.

I've seen the Mississippi more than once; crossed her many times. I was born in Michigan; from the upper peninsula to the lower, I've toured every county - loved seeing Lake Huron; Ontario, Michigan - Erie, and Superior.

Going through the Rockies; driving 2630 miles from Ohio to Seattle in 3 days - I could not believe my eyes as I passed through the Dakotas; into Montana - Wyoming, then the desert of Spokane. I was relocating to marry a new husband; short of cash, and had to drive 'straight through' - 3 hours of sleep (average) each night (at a rest-stop). The good part of it all, with all the overwhelming beauty of nature along the way, it wasn't that tough to stay awake....

I drove there 3 days after Mt. St. Helens 'erupted' - I dealt with high gas prices; long distances between stops for food and gas, and had to wear a mask over my face to keep out the ash that piled like snow-drifts on the side of the roads as I neared Yakima.

I hear my heart sing - it doesn't cry out; it simply knows why I love my country so much.

Thank you to John Mitchum who reads this beautiful text; to Nancy Snider for sending me the link. It was a wonderful 4th of July - 2008

Before you 'read on', read these words spoken by John F. Kennedy, Jr. - I love them still.

Let both sides explore what problems unite us instead of belaboring those problems which divide us.

Let both sides, for the first time, formulate serious and precise proposals for the inspection and control of arms, and bring the absolute power to destroy other nations under the absolute control of all nations.

Let both sides seek to invoke the wonders of science instead of its terrors.

Together let us explore the stars, conquer the deserts, eradicate disease, tap the ocean depths, and encourage the arts and commerce.
Today after losing another dear friend, Jean Kreutz, I made a memory page for those we've recently lost. If you've lost a loved one, we know your pain as well. On this blog, there's spiritual music designed to comfort you; do visit it if you feel a need to find solace. http://thoseweremember.blogspot.com

Monday, June 9, 2008

Another wonderful day in Laughlin; good food - found an old dock....

We ate at the El Torito; low-cost, but excellent food. The owners came from Mexico - she's a marvelous cook, and takes the time to make the food carefully and with lots of love!
We hiked down to the river, and found an old broken-down
dock. The few birds that were flying, were seeming to float; lazy
indeed. Once I quickly sketched what I wanted to remember, I decided I'd
turn the picture on its side - with the magic of my computer, I did just

I hope you enjoy reading about our state of Nevada; the other states we enjoy most often - Arizona and California. Try turning your own world on its 'head' now and again; do something a bit different, and feel so refreshed and inspired after you do.......

Two minutes; 6 crayons, and thinking about where I live...

After a wonderful week-end enjoying our area; taking photos (most are at the bottom of this blog), I grabbed up some old crayons I had - thought about the colors that I see most often, and realized it's the yellow of the sun; the lovey purple and blue mountains, and the bright reds of the roses and other flowers that are so beautiful around our home. I think it's time I started sketching 'for real' - I love photography, but I used to draw what I couldn't photograph because I didn't have a camera. My, how I've learned to make use of what is so 'quick and easy'; a camera - all the 'gizmos', but a few crayons is what I used as a child. Come unto me like a child - hmmm - back to the art store for some real supplies I think.

Friday, June 6, 2008

This blog of mine will only contain descriptions of our BEAUTIFUL AREA in and around Nevada/California/Arizona, but...

....as I was planning our trip; sorting pictures, and looking at the chart that shows the last 20 years of our DEPENDENCY ON OIL, I noticed how much the chart looked like my weathered flag did on May 14, 2008. Nuf said - pictures are worth a thousand words; you don't need mine to be negative.
Proceed to the rest of the entries to learn why I love the area I live in so much - call it CAN; California, Arizona, and Nevada - thank you for bearing with my 'one' irksome statement/example.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

HIDDEN MEADOWS - Let's talk Reno - this was taken in NIPTON (a town of about 15 people) en route to the 'north'...

Nipton is a 'surprise' - you take a left turn in Search Light (another tiny gambling town) - drive through a winding road with cactus and hills on each side. You don't drive too fast through Nipton - it's one of those tiny little havens, and there's not even a 'blinker light' to warn you that this is actually a legitimate village.
We love to take this side-route; then we turn North to
Las Vegas; 'onward and upward'. In and around Reno, there are about 600
miles to explore - lonely highways; U.S. #50 across the state of Nevada, to
Eley; then U. S. 93 south to Las Vegas (if you're coming back from the

You can visit Carson City - Virginia City; the focal points for a booming
state so many years ago. The 'Silver State' ; lots of silver mines, and a
few gold mines as well.

There's a rather non-descript town called Fallon. Yet, trees stand tall and dark; there's the Stillwater Range ahead.

Suddently there can be a rain-shower; huge clouds - then
a rainbow!
East of Fallon the road is only 2 lanes. Some people say Nevada
has some
of the lonliest highways, and it surely does - it even frightened
my mother who
visited in 1998.

In the 'high country' as they call it, there is a 2-mile high lake called Stella; it mirrors the slopes of Wheeler Peak. The bristle-cone pine in Great Basin National Park can survive for up to 4,000 years - it is the oldest living thing on earth so some say.

At Salt Wells you'll find stretches of alkali flats;
tiny buildings - it's
a virtual treeless plain.

There are the Bunejug Mountains; Eightmile Flat - the Desatoya Mountains - Nevada has just so many mountains, one can't plan to see them all unless you've got lots of money; time, and live to be 150 years old!

In Nevada, people raise cattle; chase wild horses - find silver; start a
cult, and even run a brothel that's legal - crazy place indeed!

Before traveling Nevada, you'll want to be sure your car is in excellent condition. Always carry bottled water - we keep 24 bottles in the car at all times. Don't travel during the mid-day; it's just too hot most of the time.

Rural Nevada's cuisine runs to burger; fries - and terrible coffee.
Again, they have some of the best western skillet foods such as eggs, cheese,
beef, and vegetables.

At nightfall, the mountains 'dim' - then the lights come
up; the STAR-lights...we love our telescope and enjoy swimming in the pool by

You can visit the Shoshone Mountas and the Reese River Valley. Reese
River is only about 3 feet wide - just a trickle.

The Great Basin embraces the Snake Mountain Range - it is a lonely place indeed, but beautiful. There are hours and hours of vistas - it spoils you when you visit the mid-west, and see 'nothing' in the horizon, but the sky; where we live, it appears we've been cut with a jagged pair of scissors - big ones; you do believe in that 'higher force' - you see the Great Spirit cutting out the skyline, and playing with his tin-snips....

You can feel lonely one minute; then if you're heading to the MGM Grand
(which we like), you'll be in the Wizard of Oz where you can visit a life-sized
figure of Dorothy; her companions - they all stand before the back-drop of the
Emerald City.

I've lived in New York; Texas, Michigan, Ohio, Washington, California and Nevada - traveled all 50 states; it is an amazing country - diverse and beautiful; I'm very happy to have been born in America!

Death Valley is a place we only visit in the winter - about 300 miles from us because there are no 'straight routes', from our home.

I love playing with photos - I didn't stand on my head or hang off the wall to get this one; just flipped it when I down-loaded it. Somehow I like this 'angle' better than the real shot.

Anyway, I don't like putting my feet on the sand in Death Valley when
it's hot; hard to find a time when it's not, but winter is the best of

Death Valley has this hemisphere's lowest elevation - highest temperatures (134 degrees) don't exceed ours by much, since we set a record 2 years ago, at 130 degrees.

One wonders how any pioneer crossed this vast valley. You drive
along route #190; you climb through the Argus Mountain Range - you climb 5,000
feet, and then Death Valley National Park welcomes you. There are Kangaroo
rats that eat the seeds from the Mesquite trees. In fact, I uploaded a
picture of the Mesquite tree that's outside our window - they form pods and have
very sharp and pointed 'spikes' that make you gather those pods carefully (I
have a few drying right now). The indians would grind the pods into a
powder-like substance to make their bread with.

We don't make this trip that often now - we live in the desert; we get quite enough 'heat', and very similar land-scape, and we prefer the Colorado River lapping 5 minutes from our home. We love having breakfast at the Marina; we wander the shores - the birds dart through the scrub pines, and sing beautifully every day.

From the RIM OF THE WORLD down to PALM DESERT - 226 & 300 miles respectively, from where we live.

A tree that produces blue flowers; a huge pine tree that drops cones that are 7 inches in diameter, and about 10 to 12 inches long - we can make it to both 'locations' in an hour's drive.
The San Bernardino Mountains are 'never-ending' for a day's experience;
or camping for 2 weeks at least!

The Mormon Rocks are beds of pinkish sandstone. Cajon Pass is part of our 'trip' to get to Palm Desert. You 'whiz' down the highway; cutting through the Pass as if you're on a galloping horse, and see the beauty surround you. Cajon Pass Overlook is a pass that was once the conduit for the Old Spanish Trail and the Santa Fe/Salt Lake Trail.
On route #138, we climb up past California junipers to Silverwood Lake
Overlook - about 6 miles from the Cajon Pass. The lake is both a
recreational site and reservoir for southern California farms where there are
many horse-farms that enjoy cool temperatures in the summer months.

We enjoy the vast San Bernardino Mountains; the Santa Ana Mountains rise to the southwest and the San Jacintos to the southeast.
We love Lake Arrowhead - it is a private lake; lots of
white first; sugar pines, and dogwoods edge the shores. We've spent many
years camping in the San Bernarino National Forest - and enjoy the Heaps Peak
You can go to the Keller Peak Fire Lookout during the summer months; you can bear witness to the 1970 fire that destroyed 53,000 acres. Just this past year in October, we were caught in the California fires; as we attempted to leave for home, we went through ash; smoke, and barely got past a fire that was burning up in the Cajon Pass - we saw beautiful pines turned into torches; I cried as I drove through this - it's hard to see what carelessness with a match or cigarette can do - moreover, what arsons (who started some of the fires) will do to nature, and you wonder why.
We love Big Bear Dam - and Big Bear Lake that once dried up almost
completely back in the 1980's.

There is a Solar Observation center that's open in July - you can visit the Big Bear Ranger Station - they have a number of pamphlets with maps that make your visit much easier.
You can follow Mill Creek Canyon - it descends into chaparral country;
it lies on the North Branch of the San Andreas Fault.

Plan on a spectacular time - you'll breathe fresh air; smell pines, and hear hundreds of birds 'chatting' as they fill the trees!

While figuring the farthest we like to drive (now that gas is so expensive); capturing a picture like this makes it worth it all!

When we don't want to travel quite so far, we visit Lamoille Canyon which is often called the Yosemite of Nevada.
You go through the forests of the Ruby Mountains to high
desert plains just southeast of Elko. There are dozens of waterfalls and
cliffs. Bighorn sheep and mountain goas amble through the high country -
hawks and eagles soar beautifully over-head.
The main route is 227 - then east of Elko - about 30 miles. The Ruby Mountains are about 10 miles wide and 100 miles long - they say the rocks faulted upward about ten million years ago.
There's the Humboldt National Forest (this number is also
in our travel book - 702-752-3357; now it's here and easier for me to find .. as
well as anyone else who might make a visit to this blog). Lamoille Canyon
is a deep cleft in the mountains. Ruby Dome is 11, 387 feet.
Cottonwoods and willows as well as aspen trees go up the canyon - it's as if
they've chosen 'their home' next to the canyon too, and like where 'they'
You can keep going until you reach Thomas Canyon Campgrounds - there are wildflowers and beautiful white-bark pines.
When we want to make a 'day-trip' that's easy; doesn't
drain the gas-tank, we go to Lake Mead which is about 65 miles from us.
There's a museum on the area's prehistory; my son takes his boat there, and we
enjoy the sandy beach. Right 'next door' is the Hoover Dam; near Boulder
city. Lake Mead is essentially the reservoir; it provides much of
California's water.
The museum is called Lost City Museum - 702-397-2193 is their phone number. They have restored structures and they have artifacts that give us a clear picture of the Pueblo people who inhabited the villages along the nearby Muddy River thousands of years ago.
As we had home, we pass a large silica sand mine; then we
drive in this stark and open stretch of the Mojave desert.
We have visited the Valley of Fire State Park - 702-397-2088; it's about 7 miles of sandstone that has turned red from oxidized iron and eroded into beautiful shapes that look almost like intended sculptures by an abstract artist.
Petroglyph Canyon Trail is beautiful - canyon walls are
decorated; art pieces by those who lived her thousands of years before we moved
At Rainbow Vista there are canyons; domes, towers ridges and valleys in range of colors one can use up about 'megabytes' of memory cards as they capture their beauty!
While we enjoy our periodic visits to Las Vegas (90 miles
from where we live), we prefer the 'outdoors'. We can get to Red Rock
Canyon in about 20 minutes, as we are 'Leaving Las Vegas'..... They have a
national conservation area; 702-363-1921. We sometimes drive up into the
Calico Hills - more sandstone and canyons. We can hike from the sandstone
quarry - it goes north and east into the Calicos; there are rocks that collect
rainwater and the wild animals that live in this area.
Any of these trips we make in either a day - or take at least 5 days when we have 'distance' to cover, and 'dollars' in our pockets..........

Sunday, May 18, 2008

By the way, a few of our retired friends feel a bit between a rock & hard place....

I've had so many e-mails about the benefits of my blog that talks about how we've lived on fixed-income for several years, and even are enjoying our lives during this recessive time.
I figured since we found the 'right place' for us to retire, and I had some spare time I should share many of the secrets of how I've managed money over the years - how we've gone through more than one recession and gas-price hike (as well as beef; coffee, sugar - and other items most of us think of as a 'necessity' in life.
So if you haven't quite figured out just how you want to set aside your money; save your money - reduce costs, so you can retire and be happy in the place you choose to live, maybe this link and blog I created, will help. http://rollwiththerecession.blogspot.com.

A beautiful California Poppy - on our trip to the San Bernardino Mountains.

When we want to get away from the heat of the desert during the summer months, we have at least 47 different mountain sites on our list - all within 350 miles or less. As I've mentioned on previous posts, the price of gas was always on our minds when we moved here 8 years ago - we are so very glad it was; we can fill the tank, and make a round-trip visit as we head out 180 miles; then return - only $60 for the tank at $4/gallon!

The Grand Canyon is 180 miles from where we live; many mountains are in between...too many to list here.

Our favorite mountain-top is 60 miles from us; that's only $12 one-way for gas - many people spend that on 2 meals at a fast-food restaurant where they 'get gas' - we use gas.

I don't think I have enough space allocated on this blog-site to upload all the beautiful photos I've taken of the local places we visit, and the areas we enjoy that are still easy to reach in 5 hours or less. We don't have to think about hotel costs a good deal of the time; up at 4:00 a.m. - at our destination no later than 9:00 a.m. - we've got a great 8-hour day and we're home by 10:30 p.m. to snuggle into our own comfy bed. Nice....

Hualapai Mountain State Park - 60 miles from where I live

The mountain is covered with huge pine trees! Just outside of Kingman, Arizona (Kingman still is the largest producer of turquoise), we drive up about 6,000 feet to enjoy the beautiful scenery and clear air!

There are 16 cabins - all made of stone; built in the 1930's. The place looks pretty much like a tiny Yosemite.

The best time to go for rates is Sunday through Thursday - from $45 to $110 for a 4-day stay.

There are r.v. campsites and tent campsites; the r.v. sites rent for $12/night, and the tent sites for $7/night.

The name Hualapai comes for the Native-American tribe that once inhabited the area and it translates to 'Pine-tree folk'.

In 1932, members of the park built 3,470 fire towers; 97,000 miles of roads and planted more than three billion trees!

There are 70 campsites - only 11 r.v. spots, so we have to call 'ahead' and book early. The number that's in our address book is: 877-757-0915.

There are 16 miles of trails - spectacular views!

The Day Use fee is $5 - sometimes we just drive up early in the morning, and come back as dusk falls.

A great place for a family reunion!

Highway 68 to Kingman then I-40; exit 51 and Stockton Hill Road, South gets us there. We travel about 15 miles on Stockton Hill Road to reach our destination - a favorite and beautiful place indeed!

Each year in August (around the 18th - for 2 or 3 days), they hold a MOUNTAIN LODGE ARTS AND CRAFTS FAIR - we find authentic art; crafts, photography, newelry - hand-made items by the Indians. There's always an abundant supply of great food.

Friday, May 16, 2008

My son said: "Hey mom, don't take a picture of my ragged flag....'

To me, this was a beautiful picture - when a country is as old as the USA, it's bound to get a bit ragged around the edges........

Something I love - something I cherish; as all flags of all countries - we fly them proudly, and we should.

No, I'm not retired in Delaware, but a friend of mine is....

Ron & I are a sharp contrast in many ways; however, as you can see by this photo I took of a few plants growing in Laughlin, 'nature' loves contrast...........
Ron's love of where he lives; what he does, and why he leads the life he CHOOSES is an inspiration - I hope you'll visit his blog and read all about his daily life - his travels; his experiences, and his love for everyone.

I call this photo: BLUES AND ALL THAT JAZZ.

We live in the desert - hard to find 'rust' where I live (but I love it). I lived 3 years in Seattle; you don't tan there - you rust.................
I miss not being able to just run up to Seattle the way
I did - now the price of gas curtails my visits. I guess I'm being a bit
of a 'snot' since I've enjoyed running all over the country for many years - the
gasoline didn't prohibit me; I traveled full-time for about 16 years in
business, and my camera was 'ever-ready'....with the same batteries

I'd shoot my fire hydrants; then nuts and bolts (up close and personal) - I found many things to photograph right in my own home or garage...but, I wanted to guarantee the 'scene', and that's why I chose to retire where I could afford to travel; to have Mom-nature surround me; to hold me 'captive' in her arms.......

Nuf said - as space permits, I'll upload a few photos that might not illustrate where I chose to live in my retired years, but just what I've seen and thought 'beautiful'!

Mitchell Caverns is about 45 miles from where we live....

The park is located in the Providence Mountains of California; about 60 miles west of Needles off Essex Road (exit) - the I-40.....
There are stalagmite and stalactite formations - guided tours. The tours take place from September through June at specific times; June, July and August they are done daily at 1:30 p.m. We keep that number in our vacation file too - 760-928-2586.

Hualapai Mountain County Park

We live about 53 miles from the Hualapai Mountains where there are lush forests similar to the Grand Canyon's north rim.
We can camp there - we can stay in small cabins; it is glorious. We use the 928-757-3859 number a lot; particularly during the hot summer months.

'Do you think they'd take me at that sanctuary?"

About 60 miles from where we live, there is an exotic animal sanctuary with over 150 animals - it includes lions, tigers, jaguars, and wolves to name a few...........
You can visit the sanctuary; the gift-shop - as to admitting 'kitten's, I think not (but hey, he's so cute you'll want to keep him yourself)!

CUNA Mutual Plan (Pensions/Retirement, FSA, Life & Disability)

So I said to my husband: California, Utah, Nevada and Arizona - that means CUNA.....

.......then I remember there is an
insurance group. Hmmmm - so I grabbed their little introduction of
'what do you want to know more about........

I'm pretty sure I know what CUNA means to me...........

MOJAVE NATIONAL PRESERVE....not this picture - this is in UTAH - 380 miles from us!

Too many pictures - so little computer-time........

We live in the Mojave desert; this is a huge swatch of desert - there are many places to visit not far from where we live.

You can visit Kelso Sand Dunes; Kelso Depot; Mitchell
Caverns, Teutonia Peak and Mid-Hills.

There is camping - four-wheel exploring; call
760-252-6201 or 760-928-2572 for information - at least that's my latest numbers
in my cellular phone directory and my notes on where to 'visit' close to us (and
save gasoline as well).

Since my one son loves off-road experiences and has
the vehicle to enjoy it, he'll be enjoying this area in June -

Why I chose to live where I do - first entry....