Wednesday, April 30, 2014



It was ninety one degrees today at Jojo's.  

Our high was in the forties and we will awake to temperatures around 26 degrees in the morning.  We are at an altitude over six thousand feet. 

Our first sign of colder temperatures was that we were wishing that we were not dressed in shorts and tees.  Then, we saw THIS on the horizon!   

Today, we traveled three hundred sixty one miles and are in Gallup, New Mexico.  

The first thing that I noticed was all the billboards littering the landscape.  What a sad site.

It amazes me how each state seems to have it's own personality and beauty.  

Colors change almost as fast as the miles change on the odometer.

God's handiwork.

Leaves me breathless

And very grateful for his creation.

And grateful for the friends we have in blogland who have sent so much encouragement, thoughts and prayers.  

You have opened our eyes to see the wonders of this experience.....The technology that provided us with the continued care by John's cardiologist even though we were twenty four hundred miles apart.

Thank you...each and every one of you.  

God bless each of you and may he enrich each of your lives.   

Monday, April 28, 2014


In recent, emotionally turbulent days, I have started this blog more times than I can remember.  I have deleted the blog each time.
As I write this, we are driving east on I-40, returning to Indianapolis.

John's cardiologist ordered a thirty day heart monitor.  The second day, we received a call and were asked when we were planning to return to Indiana.  

Our answer was that were were returning for all of John's check-ups in September after spending our summer in the mountains of Arizona, New Mexico and Colorado.    

On the other end of the phone there was a slight hesitation and then "you need to get back here as soon as possible. John must have a pacemaker."

Instead of four to six weeks with our daughter Jojo, we spent two days before we left this afternoon for the long journey to Indy.  

This has been a total shock to both of us.  We, expecially me, are having a hard time wrapping our head around the thought of a pacemaker.
If it were a respiratory problem, we would not have been so taken off guard, but now, his heart?  Good grief, what is next?

Well, whatever it is, we can handle it because of our faith in God / Jesus Christ.   

                            So, here we are, traveling east through the Mohave desert.                                                        We have traveled to an elevation of over four thousand feet, crossed the Colorado River, and are back in Arizona with the scenery changing every mile or so.  

Right after this last photo, we came to a rest stop.  After walking the dogs (and John) I drove the next one hundred miles.  We are not parked for the night at a rest stop north of Lake Havasu City, Arizona.  

Our plan is / was to drive three hundred miles a day for eight days.  I am not sure that is going to work.  Now that we are on the road, we are both wanting to get this ride over, get home and to the cardiologist.  

Today, we did not even qualify for Paul Dahl's PDD bronze medal.  We drove only two hundred eighty one miles.  

We have not driven Interstate 40 since we came out four years ago.  We are loving the change of scenery from Interstate 10.  The semi traffic is much lighter on this route.  

Hopefully, tomorrow I will have a progress report.  

Thank you for shopping Amazon through the link in the upper right column.  Your support is appreciated.  

Until next time, God Bless.  

Friday, April 25, 2014


Anza Borrego Desert State Park was not getting any cooler and we decided to throw in the towel and move to the nearby State Park.  

Our last day at Clark Dry Lake was spent relaxing in the shade of the motorhome and let the breezes keep us feeling cooler than the temperatures were indicating at ninety nine and one hundred three degrees.

The sky was full of wispy clouds and we were hoping for a beautiful a evening sunset.  

Due to the heat, Oliver, Olivia and Noah were not interested in eating and bulked at taking their walks to take care of their business. 
                                                                   They, like John and I just rested while waiting for sunset.
 I enjoyed watching this cloud formation as the evening progressed.    

The air currents created a beautiful scene as you will see in later photos.   

I would love to know why cloud watching is so relaxing.  I can sit and make up stories, find interesting figures and just daydream while gazing at the glorious sky.   

A pink tinge is beginning to color the lower edges of the clouds!  Hallelujah, it is beginning to cool down.  

The fur kids are up and feeling a bit of energy.

Oh, oh, watch out. They will not be this quiet for very long, I promise.

After being quiet for so long, they are ready to play.  

Olivia is just baiting Oliver. She is such an instigator.  

Let the wild play begin!

And they are off!

This goes on and on. Both toss and roll each other over the desert floor ending up as two huge dust bunnies...Or is that dust puppies?    
Sunsets are not only beautiful in the west.

I love to see the eastern sky as the sun plays on the distant clouds in the east.  

I decide that this cloud appears to be an amoeba with it's tendrils flowing from it's sides.

Desert sunsets have a beauty of their very own with the mountains and the desert floor to provide contrast between soft lights and hard and harsh mountains and desert floor.  

This cloud formation reminds me of a rocket flying through the sky. 

Fire seems to be lighting the sky.  The orange, yellow, lavender, pink, purple and blues all do their magic act.

And the sun's last hurrah promising that it will be back in the cool, early morning hours to trek through the desert sky once more.

Our Anza Borrego Desert hikes have ended for another year. 

Thanks to all who make your Amazon purchases through our blog.  Amazon donates a small sum to us when you make your purchases through them.  

And a huge thank you to all who take the time to join us in our adventures.  Be safe out there and most of all.....
May God go with you in your lives.      

Monday, April 14, 2014


Anza Borrego State Park, CA
Clark Dry Lake

You will never guess what was on the desert mountain top when we came outside Saturday morning.  

Keeping in mind that the days have been very hot, would you believe snow at about six thousand feet?  And it lasted well into the day.  

Our day was a bit cooler and we had a full day of activities on our agenda. 

The visitors center and the Anza Borrego Foundation and the Begole Research center were hosting an Archaeology Weekend.


There were seminars and activities for adults and children.

Clay pots were created by budding artists.  As they were working the clay, they heard how the Native Americans, in this case the Kumeyaay, made water vessels, bowls and other useful items for their everyday living.  

There were Kumeyaay attending to sell their pottery, jewelry, and to demonstrate weaving with reeds and grasses.

I was eager to ask the ladies questions.  I tried the small amount of Spanish that I know to no avail.  Thank goodness there was a translator. The ladies speak their own Kumeyaay language!

There was also a display of native plants and their uses by the Native Americans.

When I grew up, the Native Americans were called Indians. Now, that term is 'politically incorrect.'  I agree. Native Americans were here longer than our ancestors, unless your ancestors are natives that is.  

The visitor's center was crowded with guests there to learn about the animals and the culture of the area.  

The extra volunteer staff was extremely busy answering questions, selling merchandise and giving directions.

Each display had visitors learning about the birds and animals that populate the Anza Borrego Desert. 

How many animals can you find in the photograph on the right?  Can you name them?  

The day ended with a silent auction and ice cream social at the Begole Research Center. 

They served chocolate and vanilla ice cream with every topping that you can imagine.  

The volunteer on the right was also making root beer floats.  All a nice treat on a warm spring afternoon.   

For the auction, there were almost two hundred items donated by Borrego Springs businesses.    

Many beautiful items were displayed, but they were too large or too heavy for a motorhome.  We went home empty handed.  

John and I are considering volunteering at the Beogle Research Center next winter.  

This is one of our favorite destinations.  It is relatively close to our daughter, Jojo. And we have so much more to see and do here at the Anza Borrego State Park.

Thank you for visiting today and a big thank you for shopping Amazon through our blog.  

God bless you - especially during this Holy Week as we remember the life, death and resurrection of our Lord and Savior, Christ Jesus.  

Wednesday, April 9, 2014


Since the weather is cooperating with us, we decide that we are going to take another hike.  This hike is right in our own front yard here at Clark Dry Lake in the Anza Borrego desert. We decide to leave Oliver and Olivia home.

In comparison to last year, the desert looks dead. Plants, Creosote bushes, grasses, Ocotillo, cholla cactus; they all are not dead but have gone into dormancy.  What we see this year is grey and brown,  with one exception, a tree that I cannot identify.  

Rather than starting from the motorhome, we drive the Miata about a mile north  toward the dry lake that looks close enough that we could walk to it.  In the desert, everything appears to be closer than it actually is. 

As we walk, little sights draw our attention. We marvel at what wind, rain and heat can create.                                           Here, the shrub and grass are the same color as the sand. 

                                                                                                                                                                Talk about monochromatic!  At least in this next photo, I am able to get a touch of the sky and clouds.                

What creature of the desert has lived in here?  Is it still in there?  Did it cover it's track while inside sweeping the floor?

Looking north, the sky and the varied hues coming from the mountains provide distraction from the desert floor.

The tree stands in the wash waiting for next winter's rains.  Hopefully, the drought will end and next year bring green in the sleeping desert.  

 I climb a nearby hill and look out toward the dry lake.  Ahh!  I see something green!  Maybe there is water down there?  Let's go see.  

John says he has walked far enough knowing that we have yet to return to the car.  Good decision on his part as we have lost sight of the car long ago.

I continue on and on and on.  Until I reach my goal.   

There must be an underground water source.  But it is deeper than the other desert plants have reached.  

Since I have totally lost sight of John, I turn back and spot this interesting formation in my path.   

 What do we have here?  A mini volcano?  An aunt condo?  What desert creature lives here.  

Any ideas?  Where do the scorpions and tarantulas escape the hot sun only to come out at night?  That reminds me why I am so thankful that we have a black-light flashlight.  Those critters only show up at night with that kind of flashlight.

Continuing to walk back to where John is supposed to be resting, I find he is not there.  OK, where did he go?  I look around expecting to find him venturing out of the wash. Nope, no John.  

I look for shoe prints in the sand.  They all point North.  If he were returning to the car on his own, some would be in a southerly direction.  

I continue to walk south looking for tracks.  Only a Black tailed Jackrabbit darts across my path startling me enough to make me scream.  Tense?  No!  I'm not stressed...

Ahhh, after a while, I find John's tracks heading south. Rounding  a curve in the wash, there sits John in the midst of rocks.  That's my rock hounding husband all right. Geesh.

Oh well,  we return to the Miata and drive back to the motorhome.  We have had a great walk.  It was longer than the previous day, therefore we are both making progress.  

Did we arrive at Clark Dry Lake?  No.  It looks just as far away as it did from the motorhome.  Now, I am wondering how far from the motorhome the dry lake is.

The day was so nice that we could have taken the dogs with us.   

Thanks again for joining us on our desert walk. It is getting warmer so I think we will take Al's suggestion and hike the slot canyon next time.  Come back again and we will take you with us.  

God bless!

Tuesday, April 8, 2014


Last year while here in Anza Borrego, I was on an errand and discovered a road we had yet to travel.  I found that it leads to the Borrego landfill.  Wonderful.  

But, right before I reached the landfill, I parked and took a hike there in the desert - away from the landfill.  I discovered the Borrego Wash.  It was deep and wide.  It traveled as far as I could see.  I wanted to explore it, but decided to wait since I did not have water with me.  

Thursday, we were trying to decide where our hike was going to be and John remembered my talking about this wash.  

The Borrego Wash became our destination for the day.                                                        We arrived at the wash. I parked the Miata where I parked it last year. There was not a cloud in the sky and the sun was hot! Off we went with our plentiful water supply for John, Oliver, Oliver and myself. 

This wash is as wide as a two lane highway and, in places, as deep as many underpasses. Oliver and I led the way with Olivia and John bringing up the rear.
John walks much slower than I.  I walk ahead then walk back to him.  We chat as we walk then I walk ahead again. We repeat this walking style wherever we go.  He gets his exercise and I get mine.

                                                                    Past storms and the flow of the rain water creates magnificent patterns on the wash floor.  

Trees and Creosote bushes are determined to survive in this harsh environment.  

Look at how far this root goes to find a water source.  Water has exposed the root at some time, then it disappears into the floor of the wash.   

Rodents make their way into the sides of the wash.  

We were carefully watching for any signs of rattlesnakes.  Luckily, we found none.  

You can see the footprints of Oliver next to the root system.  He and Olivia were beginning to show signs of being too hot.  I felt the temperature of the sand and it seemed to be cool enough.  We did not want them to burn the pads of their paws.

John would sit and rest a bit, then we would continue on our hike.  

We stopped for water often.  I did not bring a water bowl for the fur kids assuming Oliver would drink from the lid of their water bottle since he was frightened by the lick / drip method that Olivia uses.  

Oliver seems to think that the bottle is going to attack him!  He would not drink from John's cupped hands either.  

This bottle is great for dogs that are not frightened by it.  

We had been walking quite a long time and finally decided that we did not want a dehydrated dog, so we turned back toward the road and car.  When I checked how long we had been walking, I was surprised to see that we had been in the wash for two hours.  That was long enough for John .... and too long for Oliver. 

End of day two of John's building strength program.  Day three, he needed to rest.  And rest he did.  

Thanks so much for visiting our blog.  We appreciate your Amazon purchases through our blog and your visiting this site.  Come back next time.  

God bless!