Daily Archives: December 3, 2020

Cold, Wet, and Colorful . . .

Today was quiet, and cold. Very cold, at least for south Texas. It stay overcast all day, with a few sprinkles, and just barely made it up to 55°

So we just hung around the rig all day until about 3:45 when we headed over to Victory Lakes to have dinner at the Denny’s there. But I think the real reason Jan wanted to eat there so she could update her mask and earring collections from our favorite waitress, Staci.

Staci’s mom make the masks and jewelry and Staci’s regular customers come by and shop. Jan was looking for Christmas-themed stuff and Staci had a whole full of stuff.

Here’s what Jan picked out.

Masks From Staci

Actually though, the one on the bottom right is mine.

Jan also picked out a pair of snowflake earrings that she really liked as well.

Earrings From Staci

I’m not sure about ‘green’ snowflakes. I know to stay away from the ‘yellow’ snow, but I’m not sure about the ‘green’ stuff.

And today turned out to be a surfeit of Christmas earrings for Jan. Coming home we stopped off at the Santa Fe PO to pick our mail, which contained the new tags for our Jeep.

Also in the mail was another set of Christmas earrings, these from long-time friend, Phyllis Schell,

Earrings From Phyllis

who sent these really cute Santa earrings to Jan.

And on the subject of car tags, it’s looking like soon there will be no more yearly trips to the DMV to renew your tags. It looks like Digital License Plates are coming soon.

Digital Car Tags

You can apparently update your tags using your cell phone, and also use it to track your car.

Of course, I wonder how long it will be before people’s tags are getting hacked, with cuss words showing up, crooks changing the tags on their getaway cars, etc.

There’s always Unintended Consequences, no matter what.



December 3, 2010

Tea-Licious and The Maxican . . .

We left Gina’s a little after 10 this morning heading about 65 miles north to Burnet, TX. We were meeting Chris, Linda, Piper, Brandi, Lowell, and Landon (also known as the kids) at the Tea-Licious Tea Room for lunch. The kids have been here since last night when they drove up from Houston, so they didn’t have far to drive to get here.

Tea-Licious is a great little restaurant right on Burnet’s historic town square, and we always make a point of eating there when we’re here at the lake.

Here’s Jan hogging all the Landon time, as usual. But he seems pretty happy about it, doesn’t he.

Jan and Landon in Tea-Licious

After lunch we split up, with Chris and I coming back to the lake house, while the rest of the family ran errands and picked up some groceries at HEB.

The rest of the afternoon was spend playing video games (HALO on the Xbox), napping, and walking down by the lake.

The about 5:30 we all drove over to The Maxican, (yes, that’s the way it’s spelled) our favorite local Mexican restaurant. This place is so good it has already out-grown its first location, and based on the crowd tonight, is well on its way to doing the same for this one.

As usual the food was great, and the company was even better. Here’s Miss Piper getting some time with Santa Landon.

Piper and Santa Landon

After dinner we all drove about 10 miles south to Marble Falls to see the Christmas Light Show along the banks of the Colorado River. This is the second year we’ve done the show, and luckily, this year was shirt-sleeve weather, and not in the low 40’s like last time. Here are some photos of the lights.

Marble Falls Lights 1

Marble Falls Lights 2

Marble Falls Lights 5 Marble Falls Lights 4

Landon enjoyed the first few minutes and then decided it was time for a nap. That’s (l to r) Chris, Piper (barely), Lowell, Landon, and Brandi.

Marble Falls Lights 3

We got back to the house about 8:30, and everyone was pretty well pooped out. We sat around for a while, and then people started drifting off to bed.

And now I’m going that way too.

Tomorrow we’re going to drive about 60 miles southwest to Fredericksburg, TX to eat at Der Lindenbaum, our favorite German restaurant, and do some shopping at all the neat stores along Main Street,

More tomorrow…

Thought for the Day:

Friendship is like peeing on yourself: everyone can see it, but only you get the warm feeling that it brings.




December 3, 2011

Habaneros and Gumbo . . .

This morning started off with a flurry of calls from several clients needing help. Looks like I’m going to be very busy next week.

About noon Jan and I headed up to Kemah to visit our son at the Kemah Farmer’s Market where he’s got a booth selling his very popular Habanero Jelly, Apple Butter, and Banana Butter.

PJ's Jelly Stand

On the way we stopped off at Chick-Fil-A to pick up some lunch for him, and us. The market was busy and he was doing pretty good.

Leaving Chris we drove over to Half-Price Books so that Jan could look for a couple of things. Half-Price Books is one of our favorites because they have a little bit of everything.

Next up was a client’s office where I installed and set up Carbonite, the online backup system. Although not recommended for RV’ers who use Aircards, WiFi, or satellite Internet, if you’re using a land-based Internet service like cable or DSL, it’s the easiest way to keep your system constantly backed up for only about $60 a year. And no worries about onsite problems with fire or theft.

After finishing that up we headed back home for a couple of hours before heading back up to Clear Lake to meet Brandi, Lowell, and Landon at Floyd’s Cajun Seafood, our other favorite Cajun place. Can’t get enough of their Gumbo and Boudin.

Floyd is Floyd Landry. He and his brothers started the Landry’s Seafood Restaurant chain and then sold it. He now has two restaurants in the Houston area and one in Beaumont, TX.

Floyd is about as Cajun as it gets, and his food shows it. Really good eatin’.

After leaving Floyd’s we drove across the parking to Tuesday Morning so Jan could pick out some more Christmas cards. Then after stopping off at our store room to pick up our Christmas tree, we went by Brandi’s to pick our mail, and then headed home.

Thought for the Day:

Nothing sucks more than that moment during an argument when you realize you’re wrong.




December 3, 2014

Norfolk Pines and Cuckoos Clocks . . .

Once again our stay-at-home day was interrupted by real-life, or at least the need to get a couple of errands done.

Our first stop was to drop off some pants to be hemmed at a local Willis alteration place, before checking the Kroger’s across the street for Christmas trees, specifically a live Norfolk Pine Christmas tree for the rig. We had seen some there last week, but now they were sold out.

But while we were there we decided to have a Starbucks’ Chestnut Praline Latte, like the one we had the other day down in Webster. But this time I think the barista made a mistake and forgot to put the flavoring in, because what we got just tasted like coffee with warm milk. However, I didn’t take it back because by the time we sat down and tried it, there was a long line of customers and only the one girl/barista at the counter.

While we were sitting there drinking our milky coffee, I looked over at a display of noodles about 3 feet away, and saw the name ‘Essenhaus’ on the packaging.

Essenhaus Noodles

Looking closer, I discovered it was a product of Das Dutchman Essenhaus, an Amish restaurant located in Middlebury, IN, between Elkhart and Shipshewana. We try to eat there at least once whenever we’re in the area, since they have great fried chicken and a really great selection of fresh vegetables. But I didn’t realize until now that they were marketing their products nationwide. Small world.

Our next stop was a local nursery known for their Christmas tree selection. But when we got there and asked about Norfolk Pines, the guy said they get asked for them all the time, but they don’t carry them.

What’s wrong with this picture?

A few days ago I stopped in at a Home Depot down in Houston and noticed in passing that they had Norfolk Pines, so we drove over to the one in Conroe to check them out. And we hit paydirt. Not only did they have good selection, and Jan was able to find one she liked, but even better, though it was labeled $19.99, it turned out to be on sale for only $9.88.

Merry Christmas to me.

Yesterday when I stopped off at the Barnes & Noble down in The Woodlands, I was specifically looking for my favorite computer magazine, MaximumPC. I’ve read it for years and have always been able to pick up the latest copy at Kroger’s, or Wal-Mart, or just about anywhere. But a month or so ago I realized I hadn’t seen it for a while. And I didn’t find it at B&N yesterday either.

At first I thought maybe they’d gone out of business, but checking their website showed they were still around and selling subscriptions. The only thing I can figure is that Ingram, the big magazine distributor, has quit carrying them for some reason, but the website didn’t say anything about that.

But what the website did mention was a digital subscription, and it looked like a really good deal. I was able to get a 13 month digital subscription for only $10.99. That’s about 85 cents an issue vs. the $4.99 on the newsstand. A really good deal.

And every month the latest issue shows up in Google Play Newsstand on my phone or tablet. Once the January issues of Popular Science and Popular Mechanics are out, I’m going to subscribe to their digital editions too.

Unfortunately, it doesn’t look like Model Railroader is available in a digital-only format.


Thought for the Day:

You know what the fellow said – in Italy, for thirty years under the Borgias, they had warfare, terror, murder and bloodshed, but they produced Michelangelo, Leonardo da Vinci and the Renaissance. In Switzerland, they had brotherly love, they had five hundred years of democracy and peace – and what did that produce? The cuckoo clock. – The Third Man (1949)




December 3, 2018

Got My Jan Back . . .

I spent most of the day at work replenishing our stock of instructional DVD’s, copying the ISO files to the DVD’s, and then printing up the DVD labels on Avery’s Design & Print program and pressing the labels onto the DVD with a label applicator.

I did order a new monitor for my desk at work today. I have two monitors, one for the webserver that runs the CentOS version of Linux, and my personal machine running Win10.

The webserver’s monitor died last week, and when I found a old one in the back storage area, it run for about two days before it followed the first one into oblivion.

I found this one on Amazon, an Acer 19.5” monitor for $71, plus an additional 4 year Extended Warranty for $1.76. Should be here Friday.

Acer Webserver Monitor

Since this new one is better than the one I’m using on my Win10 machine, I’ll take the new one and move my old one over to the webserver.

I headed up to Katy about 3pm, wanting to get up there and back down here, staying ahead of the going-home traffic. And it worked pretty well.

Jan said Brandi, Lowell, and Landon got back about 12:30 this morning, completely bushed, but happy. They had a great time, and are already planning to go back in a couple of years.

Getting back to the Clear Lake area, we stopped off at Floyd’s Cajun Seafood for a dinner of a dozen Raw Oysters for us to split, Grilled Catfish for Jan, Shrimp Gumbo for me, and Grilled Veggies for both of us.

Coming home we saw a lot more Christmas decorations along FM646, including this yard that’s been lit up like this for a couple of weeks, the first one we saw.

Cherry Picker Christmas Lights

As Jan said, someone owns a cherry picker crane. Very nice!

And when we got back to the rig, I was able to surprise Jan with the fact that I had decorated the rig while she was gone.

2018 Rig Christmas Lights

Unfortunately the photo doesn’t do it justice. The lights on the ground are cycling through 16 different patterns, as is the string draped between the window awnings. Plus there’s the large white-lit wreath on the front and the multi-color one hanging on the side.

Best decorated RV in the park. Of course it’s pretty much the only one.

Thought for the Day:

Have you ever been too nice and ended up in a situation that could have avoided if you’d just been an asshole?

Me too!




December 3, 2019

Two More Days . . .

Today was a day of errands, so we were out the door about 12:30pm, trying to get a bunch of last minute stuff done before we leave for NYC Thursday morning.

VERY early Thursday morning.

Like up about 3am, our car service pickup at 4:30, at the airport about 5, with our SW flight leaving at 6:40am. With a flight time of 3:15 minutes we’ll get to LaGuardia at 10:55, losing an hour to the time change.

However our first stop this morning was Snooze for breakfast about 1pm. Then it was a stop by my client’s to pick up some Amazon stuff that came in, and also drop off our Christmas Cards in our Outgoing Mail box.

Next was a WalMart stop for stuff, and then a quick hair trim at my barbershop. Jan then did a Target and Old Navy shopping stop for some outfit stuff. Then we were homeward bound.

When I mentioned yesterday about taking the rig up to the Cummins dealer up on the north 610 loop, several readers wondered why we didn’t leave the rig there while we’re in NYC. We kind of thought about it, and even my client suggested it. But there was just too much of a time crunch.

Trying to arrange an appointment, get the rig up there, getting a place to stay and leave our stuff t here would mean that we would be paying for a place for a week while we’re gone. It just wouldn’t work.

I did get some great info from reader Richard King who gave me the name and phone number for the RV Repair Manager at the Cummins place. Gives me a great place to start. But nothing’s probably going to happen until after the first of the year.

Jan and  I want to add a 6’ x 8’ storage shed on our RV site. But no one else has one here, and it seems like we remember something about that they’re not allowed.

But it can’t hurt to ask, right?

Right now he’s got 3 empty sites out of 17, and the 5th Wheel next to us is leaving in a couple of weeks. Plus a lot of other resident RV parks in the area allow storage buildings.

So to help out  his decision and show him what it would look like, I took this photo of the shed,

Arrow Newburgh 2a

and this photo of our rig site,

RV Shed

and put them together for this.]

RV Shed 2

If I had wanted to take more time, I would have put an adjustment mask over the building to darken it down some so the brightness/contrast would match the rig photo more closely.]

I ordered Jan this new sweat shirt that, unfortunately, won’t be here for our NYC trip,

Moose Christmas Ornaments Sweat Shirt

But Jan’s really looking forward to it getting here.

Thought For The Day:

Want to know your family genealogy? Run for political office.