2020 June 30 Last Day

Tuesday In Austin, Texas

Welcome, family and friends to our daily journal.

I found the part that is cloudy in the “partly cloudy”.

Being that it was our last day caring for guinea pigs and dogs, Ella cleaned the bedding so that the kids would have a clean bed in which to sleep.

We also have a clean bed inn which too sleep. And we will not have a dog sleeping with us. Other than Zeus rolling me off of the bed and Bluebell laying with her head on my feet, the dogs weren’t that bad of bed partners. It was a king size bed after all.

My bride made out possible for us all to sleep on clean Covid-free bedding.

The Resident Rodents got their cage cleaned again this morning. Judging from the amount of pig poop over the least few days, I may be over feeding them.

The dogs have been going bat$hit crazy this morning. Zeus has been jumping higher into the small tree than I thought possible for a fat older dog. Then, they’ve raced around the fence line with their noses in the air. I don’t know if they are chasing birds, squirrels, or invisible intergalactic invaders. Whatever it is that they are at least getting their exercise.

I had all the dishes washed and put away, so for lunch I ordered Domino’s pizza.

Another photo of Bluebell sleeping with her enormous tongue hanging out. I can’t help thinking she looks like roadkill.

Bluebell wasn’t the only one dozing. Ella, at least, kept her tongue in her mouth.

Today is our last day to sit with the animals. I carried all of our stuff (clean clothes, CPAP machines, games, etc) out to the truck before the kids returned home.

Since we couldn’t hug and kiss anyway, we just put the last bag (the one with Ella’s chocolates) into the truck and left.

I scheduled our grocery pickup for early tomorrow morning.

After arriving home, I received a text from the landlord with the site rent and electric bill. I promptly sent payment to her.

That is the end of our excitement for the day.

Thanks again for stopping by.

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  • 8 months 30 days since we returned to Texas.
  • 3 months and 16 day being self isolated.

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2020 April 15 Wednesday in Liberty Hill, Texas

Tom and Ella Journal Welcome to our daily journal. Share it with a friend. www.TomAndEllaJournal.com
Audio journal. The plan its to update weekly with a recap. https://www.spreaker.com/user/12220003

he temperature reached a nice sixty eight degrees under full sun. If I could, I’d but a smiley face on today’s sun. Keep on smiling Ol’ Sol!

Good morning starshine
The earth says “hello”
You twinkle above us
We twinkle below
Good morning starshine
You lead us along
My love and me as we sing
Our early morning singing song( )

Our early morning singing songs were hymns on the Elder Sing CD.

Round leaf rag wort?

Mock Verbena?

Antelope Horns?

Some of the flowering weeds we saw on our morning walk.

nce again HUM said the truck battery was in the yellow zone. We decided to take a longer drive to better charge the battery. Since we were going for a longer drive, we drove to Adam and Leigha’s. We invited them to come out near the truck to talk. It was nice to have a live visit with them, even at a distance.

nce we were done there, we called Sofia to see if Beket and she were able to step outside to talk with us. She was waiting on an important phone call from school. We said that we would try another time.

hile we were out, we ordered pizza from Dominos. Then went through the drive through. There was a small park in Bertrum where we stopped to eat the pizza. It seemed almost decadent to sit, enjoying the sunshine, in a public space. I hope no one tattles on us. Shhh!

nce home, Ella beat me severely. Fortunately, it was only at Fast Track. So three only that was bruised was my ego.

care package from Linnea arrived on our deck. It came with facemasks, Bisquick, and Hot Tamales candies. It was very much appreciated. Thanks. Everything was wiped down with Clorox wipes, because you don’t know how m many have handled them.

tried unsuccessfully to take a nap. When that failed, I asked Ella if she was ready for a walk to the mailbox. We had received a package through USPS but that is a separate delivery person from the mail carrier. When we checked the box there was nothing but echoes.

fter our walk, Ella went in for a shower and I worked some more in the topper. I Keep forgetting to document with photographs what I’m doing.

e had a choir practice, via Zoom, from all of our homes tonight. It did not not go well. Although we could see and hear each other, singing was impossible. Zoom only plays the voice of the loudest and not multiple voices at once. Even when speaking we had that robotic auto-tune voice and it made the piano sound like a calliope.

NO SUNSET PHOTO I was on the Zoom call when the sun was setting.

  • God bless and g’day.
  • If you enjoy our journal: comment, like, and follow. Also see our Facebook page and our new Instagram page. Just search for “Tom and Ella Journal.”

  • Visit my devotions blog. New devotions every day (nearly)

http:www.musingsdevotions.WordPress.com

My NEW sermons blog Armchair Sermons. Sermons posted most Sundays 10 AM central time.

http://armchairsermons.com

  • ©2020 Thomas E. Williams

Day 197 in Texas.

Day 31 being self isolated.

2020 February 16 Sunday

2020 February 16 Sunday in Liberty Hill, Texas http://TomAndEllaJournal.WordPress.com

Brahm’s Lullaby

ullaby and goodnight,
With lilies of white
And roses of red
To pillow your head
May you wake when the day
Chases darkness away,
May you wake when the day
Chases darkness away.

Lullaby and goodnight.
Let angels of light
Spread wings round your bed
And guard you from dread.
Slumber gently and deep
In the dreamland of sleep,
Slumber gently and deep
In the dreamland of sleep.

oing for a high temperature of seventy four. However, it over shot the mark and landed on seventy eight degrees. The mercury topped out at eighty five inside. Even with the door open and a fan oscillating, it was too warm for yours truly. I shut the door and started the air conditioning. Once it was down to seventy five inside, the a/c went off and the door was once again open.

There was a little color in the sky this morning. However, I never actually saw the sun, which remained shrouded in clouds until midday.

astor John Saint’s sermon this morning at Cross Tracks Church, Liberty Hill, Texas was “You Have Heard It Said”

fter the worship service, we went to our Sunday school class. We have just begun to study Adam Hamilton’s book “Making Sense Of The Bible.” Having just read the introduction and the first three short chapters, I can already tell that I’m going to love this book.

e needed a few essentials to restock our refrigerator and pantry. That meant a trip to the Wal-Mart in Cedar Park. While there I topped off the truck’s gas tank.

y the time we were dove at Wal-Mart, it was past noon and time for lunch. Golden Chick was on or way home so we went through the drive-up. We brought the food home and ate here.

esterday evening we received a text from the RV park owner that the yards would be mowed on Sunday. We were asked to make sure that everything was picked up before the mowers arrived. I brought our two camping chairs up on the deck a and found a few scraps of trash that went into the trash. Today, when we returned from our travels, the site head been mowed. There really isn’t much grass, the ground is too full of rocks for much to grow. However the recent rain has caused some straggly looking weeds to pop up. Now they’re gone.

.

IN THE BEGINNING part 3

If you haven’t read “The Beginning Parts 1, 2” you should read it first for a fuller understanding.(go back to 2020 February 14 Thursday)

Originally published November 2011
The next year we bought a membership with Cutty’s Des Moines Camping Club which is a members’ owned resort in the Des Moines area.

The campground is over eighty acres of gently rolling sparsely forested hills with an eleven acre fishing lake in the middle. The resort has amenities such as: two outdoor pools, wading pool, eighteen hole miniature golf, western play village, giant slide, playgrounds, basket ball courts, horseshoe pitching areas, sand volley ball, shuffle board and tennis courts.

Cutty’s is much like the small towns in which Ella and I grew up. There is a general store, café, laundry facilities, RV parts store, repair shop and a large “main street” meeting area where there are all types of entertainment every weekend during the camping season. One of the biggest attractions for us was the large clubhouse which remains open year around. The clubhouse has in indoor pool, sauna, hot tub, exercise room, showers, and laundry.
(to be continued)

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Visit my other blogs

  • Tom and Ella’s Daily Journal of Our Lives

http://TomAndEllaJournal.WordPress.com

  • Visit my devotions blog new devotions every day (nearly)

http:www.musings devotions.WordPress.com

  • My NEW sermons blog Armchair Sermons. Sermons posted most Sundays 10 AM central time.

http://armchairsermons.com

  • All content (except quotations) ©2020 Thomas E. Williams
  • Day 138 in our Texas home
  • *The Over The Hill Gang, (3307 RR 1869) Any area senior 50 years or older is invited to join for fellowship and a meal every Thursday at 11:30 a.m. The first meal is free; afterwards, individuals are asked to donate $6 for their meal.
  • **Grandies welcomes those 50+ every week with friendship, games and a ministry to connect to others. As a special part of their ministry, Grandies sign and send greeting cards with inspirational messages to those serving in the military, the sick or homebound and church members celebrating happy milestones like birthdays and graduation. Since this ministry started, more than 3,300 cards have been sent!

In the summer, Grandies also work to make available snack packs through Operation Liberty Hill for children who may not otherwise have enough food without a school in session. Additionally, they provide meals at Vacation Bible School. and host bake sales twice a year to raise funds for their important works.

Wednesdays, 9 a.m.
Currently meets at the OTHG building (3307 RR 1869)

2020 February 14 Friday

2020 February 14 Friday in Liberty Hill, Texas http://TomAndEllaJournal.WordPress.com

Sleep

azy cold? Crazy cold. Much colder than the weather men/women predicted. Much colder than I was prepared for.

unrise. I told you a few days back that it wouldn’t be long until the dim would rise behind that danged power pole. Well, tah duh!

rom Facebook. I saw this word search on Facebook. They didn’t want you to post the answer. They just wanted it reposted. I don’t do that. But I just wanted to prove that I could solve it.

ingo was the name of the game at the Georgetown senior center. They just decorated the center for Saint Valentine’s day.

ttendance was still a little off. But, those of us that were there, had a good time.

izza sounded good tonight. Rather than cook, I ordered a Domino’s pie for supper.

There was a little color in this evening’s sky.

IN THE BEGINNING part 1

Originally published November 2011

The genesis of this story goes back a long time. I’m not sure of the exact year when it happened but I know that it was at least a decade ago, maybe closer to two. (Keep in mind that this was published 2012) The company, for which I was then working, added a new benefit to our package. The new benefit was the chance to purchase Cancer Insurance at a discount. It was set up so that my wife and I would both be covered. It was for a one-time payout if either of us was ever diagnosed with cancer. Because cancer has eaten away at both sides of our family, it seemed like a good idea to take the policy.

In 2003 Ella’s mammogram came back showing a spot. It was as tiny as a grain of salt. They performed a biopsy and found it was indeed breast cancer. The good news was that the biopsy had removed it all. However, to be double sure, she had a lumpectomy and radiation treatments in January 2004. The cancer is gone, thank God.
We sent the paperwork to the insurance company and received a check with which we paid the doctor. There was money left over. What to do?
With a new perspective of our own mortality, we resolved to start doing some of those things that were planned for our retirement. We loved camping and so determined to get away more often. We had been tent campers since early in our marriage. We would often spend two week stints several times a year living in our tents even while going to work every day.
Now to understand us, it helps to understand ‘how’ we tent camped. First there was the tent. It was 12’x17’ and had 3 rooms with 2 ‘pop out’ closets. Then we had a screen room which was 15’x20’ which was butted up to the front door of the tent. Then there was the shower tent that butted up to the back door of the tent. Over the entire layout was a 20’x30’ silver, sun-blocking tarp. The tarp sat on a home-made frame. We also had a tarp as a water barrier under the entire set up. We then had a carpet scrap that covered the tent floor. We stacked two queen-size air mattresses for our bed.
In the screen room, we had a plywood counter top laid across a series of plastic stacking drawers in the kitchen area. Two of the drawers also acted as sinks for washing and rinsing dishes. We used a propane stove that had two burners, a grill, and a tiny oven about 4”x6”x10”. Folding tables and chairs sat in the dining area and camp chairs in the sitting room area. Both tents were well illuminated by Coleman lanterns powered by a couple of 20 pound LP tanks.
I mentioned the shower tent, well; we had a battery powered submersible pump that connected to a hand held shower wand. On the floor of the tent was a very small inflatable ‘kiddy’ pool.
If we camped where there was electricity, you might also find a mini-fridge and a microwave.
With nearly 600 square feet of living space, we were far from ‘roughing it’. As a matter of fact we often pitied the people in their travel trailers and motor homes for having to live such ‘cramped’ lives.
We lived very well when we tent camped. However, as all good things do, there came a time when the set up, tear down and put away part of camping became too much for us. After you’ve rolled up all of that canvas and find yourself on your knees looking for something to help pull you back to your feet, which is when you begin to think about travel trailers. (to be continued
  • IF YOU ENJOYED MY JOURNAL ENTRY, PLEASE CLICK THE LIKE BUTTON, LEAVE A COMMENT AND/OR FOLLOW.
  • Thanks for stopping by.
  • God bless and g’nite

Visit my other blogs

  • Tom and Ella’s Daily Journal of Our Lives

http://TomAndEllaJournal.WordPress.com

  • Visit my devotions blog new devotions every day (nearly)

http:www.musings devotions.WordPress.com

  • My NEW sermons blog Armchair Sermons. Sermons posted most Sundays 10 AM central time.

http://armchairsermons.com

  • All content (except quotations) ©2020 Thomas E. Williams
  • Day 134 in our Texas home
  • *The Over The Hill Gang, (3307 RR 1869) Any area senior 50 years or older is invited to join for fellowship and a meal every Thursday at 11:30 a.m. The first meal is free; afterwards, individuals are asked to donate $6 for their meal.
  • **Grandies welcomes those 50+ every week with friendship, games and a ministry to connect to others. As a special part of their ministry, Grandies sign and send greeting cards with inspirational messages to those serving in the military, the sick or homebound and church members celebrating happy milestones like birthdays and graduation. Since this ministry started, more than 3,300 cards have been sent!

In the summer, Grandies also work to make available snack packs through Operation Liberty Hill for children who may not otherwise have enough food without a school in session. Additionally, they provide meals at Vacation Bible School. and host bake sales twice a year to raise funds for their important works.

Wednesdays, 9 a.m.
Currently meets at the OTHG building (3307 RR 1869)

2019 December 12 Thursdayz

2019 December 12 Thursday in Liberty Hill, Texas

trip in from Liberty Hill’s to work today was mostly uneventful. However there were a string of fire trucks that we’re coming up behind me but turned before they got to me. I wonder where they were going? I pray that wherever they’re going everyone will be safe.

or some reason unknown to me, the door to our dressing area has not only been unlocked but standing wide open for the last few days. Now I know that maintenance also uses this for storage. So I can only assume that they are the ones opening it. But I do wish they would shut the door again when they are done. Because if I sit out there in my Santa suit, and kids go by, it can be confusing to them.

hen Jessie, the set manager, arrived this morning, she was carrying a bag of groceries. She asked if I could use them. Both her mom and dad had, unknown to each other, bought groceries. So there were duplicates that they didn’t need. Most of the items were things that the local food pantry is asking for. This morning I ordered groceries from Wal-Mart to be picked up after work. Some Items were ordered specifically to donate to the food pantry. I will take Jessie’s and ours to Cross Tracks Church food pantry collection site.

had a grand day today. Several bus loads out special needs adults were in the mall shopping today and many of then came to see Santa.

hree years ago Ian, an 11 year old boy with Downs Syndrome, came to see Santa. Though he can talk, it was difficult to understand him, so he also communicated partially with ASL on a limited scale. I also knew a little sign language. After his pictures were taken, his mother went to look at the photos while Ian and I sang Rudolph the Red Nose Reindeer and pretended that the big Santa chair was a sleigh. When mom came to get him, he went over, hugged her, kissed her, and told her goodbye. He was going to stay with Santa.

ast year we were closing the set to change Santa’s when I saw him standing in line. I waved him in, got the pictures and again visited for a short time while mom looked at photos. Again, he didn’t want to leave. He told her he was going tho sleep in my chair.

oday his mom brought Ian for photos. Today, when she was ready to leave, he went with her. However, an hour or so later, she came to thank me for the joy I give to get son. I said that he gives me so much joy also. Ian parked himself on my lap and was ready to stay again. It took some persuading for him tho go with her.

n my way home I stopped at Wal-Mart to get the groceries that I had ordered online before going to work. I also went in to get Ella’s prescriptions. The pharmacist had been at the Wal-Mart back in Iowa so I told her that the temperature back there was 29°.

felt rather proud of myself for remembering the groceries AND the medications. That is until Ella asked where the pizza was. I had forgotten that she had ordered pizza for me to pick up.

art of the reason I forgot about going for the pizza was because I was a little shaken up by the guy whole pulled around me to run a stop sign. He came close to running head-on into a tractor trailer with a load of rock. I don’t know where he had to be in such a hurry that he could endanger so many lives. I hope he made it there without causing a accident.God bless and g’nite.

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  • My NEW sermons blog Armchair Sermons. Sermons posted Sundays 10 AM central time.

http://armchairsermons.wordpress.com

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  • All content (except quotations) ©2019 Thomas E. Williams
  • Day 73 in our Texas home
  • 31 days as Santa at Lakeline Mall

2019 November 14 Thursday

2019 November 14 Thursday in Liberty Hill, Texas

nother concrete colored sky today, complete with drizzle.

‘m trying to think of how to tell this tale and where to begin. Not at the beginning because that was too long ago and not too specific because … Well that’s private.

So I’m starting this story approximately two months ago. There is a medication that I’ve taken for years. Recently It appeared that the dosage needed to be increased. Instead of taking one tablet everyday, I would take one tablet three days a week and two tablets four times a week. That sounded simple to me. However it also meant that my current prescription of 30 didn’t provide enough pills to make it through a month when I needed 46.

A new prescription was called into the pharmacy. At this point I’m not sure if it was the falt of the person from the doctor’s office or the person at the pharmacy, but there was some miscommunication that resulted in me getting 30 pills and instruction to take one pill 4 days a week. Talking to the pharmacy clerk resulted in receiving that vacant-I-don’t-understsnd-the-problem-look.

Rather than trying to untangle that particular snarled thread of thought, I waited a week until I had an inperson appointment with the doctor on November 1. I explained to him what had happen and he said that he would order 90 tablets.

I went to the pharmacy that evening and was told they didn’t show receiving the order. I went back on the second and was told the same thing. I went back on the 5th and was again told that there was nothing for me. I gave up going to the pharmacy.

The 6th and 7th I was busy with things and forgot to contact the doctor.the 8th I started working as a mall Santa during the hours that the doctor had office hours (Santa is not allowed to have a phone anytime he’s in the suit). 9th and 10th were weekends and the office was closed.

On the 11th I asked Ella to call the doctor while I was at work. She did. He called in a second order of 90 tablets. Now I’m a little unsure how the message got back to Ella, but the message was that the pharmacy had filled the order on the 1st and that, since I failed to pick them up, they had put then back in stock. Grrrr!!!!

This morning (the 14th) on my way to work, I stopped to pick up the pills and was told that the insurance wouldn’t cover it because it was too soon to need a refill. I argued that it was not a refill because I never got the first order. I got that same blank stare from that same clerk.

I told her to forget the insurance and that I would pay the full non-copay amount in cash. She smiled and said that they would be ready in 20 minutes! They have had the order for 2 to 3 days and It wasn’t ready! I couldn’t wait because I needed to continue to work.

I stopped on my way home and picked up my pills and paid full price.

s I was leaving Wal-Mart I called Dominos in Liberty Hill and ordered a pizza for pickup. I arrived at the pizza place only to be told that I had ordered it at the OTHER Dominos in Liberty Hill. So I back tracked about 5 miles and got my pizza. Boy, was I ever glad to get home!

he sun had set long before I was home. But I had taken this photo as I was leaving Wal-Mart this evening.

God bless and g’nite.

  • Visit my devotions blog new devotions every day (nearly)

  • My NEW sermons blog Armchair Sermons. Sermons posted Sundays 10 AM central time.

http://armchairsermons.wordpress.com

  • Tom and Ella Daily Journal of Our Lives

https://tomandellajournal.wordpress.comhttps:/

  • All content (except quotations) ©2019 Thomas E. Williams
  • Day 45 in our Texas home