Monday, August 30, 2010

Palm Tree Trimming

Here is a “before” and “after” picture of the tree by our house.  They look scrawny now with their new haircut, but they’ll be their normal well manicured selves by the time you get back here.  LOTS of work is being done now in readiness for your return.
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 tree trim 001

Sawing off the branches is only part of the chore.  Picking up the branches and throwing them into the truck wouldn’t be much fun either.  Have you ever taken a close look at the nasty thorns on every branch of a palm tree??
thorn 001 There is also a crew repairing curbs that have crumbled under the wheels of wide turn RVs.
misc 012 New spec homes are being installed.  This one must be a newer model as I’ve never seen one with so many windows.  This one is going in at 1572.
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Wow…..I really have to be careful about what I post here!  Thank you to Bob Gosh for writing to let me know the rare month of August is an email hoax.  He checked it out on Snopes.  Maybe we WILL live to see it again in 2021.


Sunday, August 29, 2010

Arizona storms….but not here

The 10:00 news last night was full of information about the 69 car pile up on I10.  It made front page in this mornings paper.  I also found an article in the Dispatch about the storm knocking out power lines near Maricopa.  Fear not……the “storms” did not hit us here in Palm Creek.
crash 001storm We had an overcast sky all day, big billowing clouds, some flashy lightning, lots of rumbling thunder, a short burst of rather strong wind, and a nice soft rain for about an hour.  The puddles on our roads here weren’t even deep enough to warrant a barefoot stroll this time….and I don’t stroll down the street with an umbrella when its thundering and lightning!  Soooo if you heard about the storms on the news, you can rest easy.  Everything here is just fine.
Bill Wrightson was out with his fancy camera to capture some of nature’s beauty.  Thank you to Bill for sharing!
Sunset Sunset 8/28/'10 
Here’s today’s Tid Bit donated via email from Bob & Carol Vance.
This August has 5  Sundays, 5 Mondays, 5 Tuesdays, all in one  month. It happens once in 823  years. I'll probably miss the  next one.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Another Bird Sighting

I received an email this morning from Leslie Evans:
“Here are three night herons who arrived at the north pond (13th fairway) at about 4:45 yesterday  -  waiting out a 'long hot day of summer'.  This was such a treat, as they never arrive until after dusk and you only know they're out there by their 'bark'.  After four seasons of looking for them, I finally got my fill of these beautiful night feeders.”
I’m an AVID bird watcher so am thrilled by Leslie’s photos!  Of course, I had to do some research immediately and found some interesting facts:
“With a range that spans five continents, including much of North America, the Black-crowned Night-Heron is the most widespread heron in the world. It is most active at dusk and at night, feeding in the same areas that other heron species frequent during the day.”
Special THANK YOU to Leslie for sharing!!  DSCN1236 DSCN1240 DSCN1248 DSCN1259 DSCN1261

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

New Houses

It’s 9:15 am and it’s only 90 degrees outside with a nice breeze.  Feels wonderful after the suffocating muggy heat we’ve had this past week.  I’m happy to report that Don is mending nicely and can now accompany me on our housewatch daily chores.  We make a great couple and can only laugh at ourselves as we hobble around groaning and moaning.  I clumbsily pulled my rib cage loose this week so have dipped into Don’s pain medications.  Shhhhh…..don’t tell the doctor.  Thank goodness our son, Anton, is in town for a while to help us with any kind of lifting or heavy duties.  Ahhhh….the golden years.
Village homes are popping up like weeds on the north end of the park.  There are four new ones on the far north street  (three pictured here).  I think some are sold already but I don’t know any confirmed facts.  In this economy, its wonderful to see new construction.  There are numerous add-on rooms and sheds being built around the park as well so that’s good news for the contractors in the area.  Palm Creek must be one of the best customers these days.
housewatch 004 The park held a Casserole dinner Monday night but I didn’t attend for two reasons…….1.  I didn’t want to cook something to take and 2.  Monday night is bingo night at the local American Legion.  Connie Morin and I seldom miss Monday night bingo during the summer.  We both won that night too!  In fact, I bingoed 3 times and came home with over $100.  Yahoo!!!  Even my sore ribs didn’t keep me away.
Because of our “limited activities” and health problems, Don and I have watched more television this summer than we did in the last two years.  Our sons introduced us to NetFlix so we’re able to download tons of great movies through our Wii game system.  It’s awesome.  Perhaps that would be a good topic for our computer club this fall.  I’ll have to work on that.  Don’t forget to mark Wednesday mornings at 9:30 on your activity calendars so you don’t miss our informative meetings in the SanTan room.

Monday, August 23, 2010

New Bird Photos

Bill Wrightson was out on the golf course (as usual) and stopped for a peanut snack while he watched a road runner cruise around on the fairway.  Lo and behold, the bird approached Bill’s cart and waited for a handout of those tasty peanuts!  Fortunately, Bill had his camera with him and managed to get some great shots! 

I couldn’t decide which photo to choose so am posting them all for you to enjoy!

Road Runner Bill_0017
Road Runner with peanut

Yes indeed….here’s proof that roadrunners like peanuts!

Bill is getting pretty good with photoshop as evidenced by this awesome close up of one of our owls.
Ground Owl 2010 Bill_0026

He also got this shot of the love birds sitting on the roof.

Friday, August 20, 2010


BIG NEWS ALERT!  Palm Creek is launching into the electronic age by posting newsletters and information on its website!  The Palm Creek website is being updated and modernized to make it an informative, active, location for getting the latest and greatest news about all of the events, sports, and activities that occur at our resort.  We’ll no longer have to wait until the first of each month to get the current activities schedule as it will be posted live on the internet and will be updated and accessible at all times. 

Every year a group of volunteers gathers to assist with mailing out the upcoming season’s brochure listing all the events for the new season.  The project used to take HOURS to print, fold, address, stamp, and sticker for a very expensive mailing process.  This year, we will receive a postcard informing us of the upcoming events posted on the park website.  We merely log on and can read or print the newsletter from a pdf file.  Included in the electronic newsletter is a page listing all the events and ticket sale information.  We can print it out, fill it in, and fax or mail it back to get our tickets.  Those of you who aren’t comfortable with the electronic version or do not have internet access can write or call the resort and a hard copy can be mailed to your current location.  You should be receiving the post card within the next week or so.  You don’t have to wait for the postcard….you can log on NOW at

At the very  bottom of the page, click on “Monthly Newsletter”.  Then click on “Summer 2010 Newsletter” and a pdf file will open for your perusal.  You can just hit the print button on your screen to print the whole newsletter or choose which pages you want to print.  Fill out the ticket information and mail it or fax it back to the park to get your tickets for the upcoming season events. 

After you print or read the newsletter, hit the BACK button on your computer to return to the regular website.  Click on EVENTS and you’ll see the calendars that are now available.  There is a separate one for EVENTS, another for ACTIVITIES, and one for SPORTS.  These calendars will be kept current and will contain all the info we need.  Awesome!  Click on any of the items on a calendar and a separate info box appears listing the details. 

There’s more!  To see the homes for rent, click on RENTALS.  To see homes for sale, click on RESORT HOMES. 

You can even send an electronic postcard to your friends by clicking on POSTCARDS.

The whole website is still “a work in progress” and will be further updated with new photos and special features so tune in often for new developments.

The first question folks asked ME is….will I continue to post my blog??  Yes indeed I will.  This blog is just ME… is not affiliated, supported, or associated with the park management.  This blog is just me bragging and boasting about the beautiful resort where I reside and chatting with folks like you who share my enthusiasm for the resort lifestyle.

Here is the group of volunteers that assisted with mailing out the postcards yesterday.

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Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Bingo & Tidbits

We had another summer bingo session last night at the club house and were treated with free popcorn.  Attendance is low but we have some loyal bingo players who turn out for the fun and chance to chat.  Summer sessions are about the only time a person can get lucky enough to bingo several times in one night.  The regular game payout is a whopping $3 but the final blackout means big bucks….at least $23 last night.  And guess who won AGAIN…….Larry Burke.  That’s twice in a row he won the big jackpot.  Now that he’s so rich, we always know where we can stop in for a loan, right Larry??

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1.  Isn’t it a nuisance when you want to unroll some saran wrap or aluminum foil and the whole roll falls out of the box?  Did you know that on the ends of almost all rolled cartons, there is a spot to push in or indent that will hold that roll in place for you?  Check it out for yourself.  The first time I heard that from someone, I didn’t believe it till I walked over to the cupboard and saw it for myself.  After all these years, there’s still something new to learn.

2.  During historic civil wars, when troops returned without any casualties, a writing was put up so all can see which read “0 Killed”.  From here we get the expression “OK” which means all is well.

3.  Here’s your computer tip for the day:  Instead of using the mouse to get up to the address bar, just hit ALT  D.  That jumps up to the address bar and highlights the current address.  All you have to do is start typing the new address you want to use.  …. And remember that “Windows D” takes you to your desktop.

got mail

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Citrus Trees in Arizona

My eagle eyes spotted “suspicious activity” at one of the houses I watch so I wandered over to see why the gent was messing around with one of the fruit trees on the lot.  He showed me his ID and identified himself as being with the United States Department of Agriculture USDA.  WOW…..the Feds are here.  LOL
Mr. USDA explained that California and Florida have a citrus pest that is causing major problems and they’re hoping it won’t spread to Arizona.  He said the nurseries in Yuma have been quarantined to prevent the bug from spreading.  They are placing insect traps in fruit trees throughout southern AZ to test for the nasty bug and have placed three traps in Palm Creek since we have so many trees in the park.  He will return every two weeks to analyze results and see if the bug has made it this far.  I asked for the name of the little critter but after he pronounced it for the third time…..I decided to call it a citrus pest.  The trap he placed in the tree is a sticky card so they can easily spot the kind of insects that land on it.  IMG_1378My curiosity was aroused so I spent some time on the internet to learn more.  I thought I would recognize the genetic name of the bug once I saw it but they all look alike so I won’t bore you with bug information.  I did read some things I thought were interesting though so will post it here.  Now I finally know why the trunks of some trees are painted white!
Here’s the stuff I copied from the net that I thought was newsy:
“ Surprisingly, the weather in the Arizona desert produces some of the best tasting citrus in the world. Heat produces sugar in citrus fruits making them sweeter and cool weather produces acid making citrus more tart. The hot summers and cool winters in the desert therefore produce a much fuller flavored product than can be grown in either consistently warm climates such as Florida, or in consistently mild climates such as the California coast. California's desert regions produce comparable quality to that of Arizona.
The trunk and branches of citrus trees when subjected to direct sun can burn badly. In fact, if the trunk of a tree is fully exposed to sun it can kill it. Citrus naturally branch to ground and therefore protect their trunks. However, when a citrus tree is trimmed as a shade tree it exposes the trunk. This is the reason that trimmed up trees have their trunks painted white.”
I definitely keep an eye on the three little check boxes I’ve added to the bottom of each posting.  You can mark the article as “interesting”, “neutral”, or “boring”.  It just takes a second to click on one of those little squares so that gives me feedback on what you like to read.
nice day

Friday, August 13, 2010

Hello Again!

We’re on the road to recovery and I’m anxious to get back to the keyboard.  I have quite an eclectic collection of photos and short stories that have accumulated in the last week or two so will pound them all out in this hodge podge posting.
First – just one more THANK YOU to all of you for your thoughts and words of comfort, caring, and encouragement during this past week.  You “Creekers” are an awesome group.  One moment also while I send a sincere loving thank you to our two sons, Anton and Kevin.  Kevin drove all the way from Kansas City to spend a few days with Dad before surgery and Anton stayed here at the house caring for our cat and our housewatch chores while we were away.  Then he ran errands, cooked meals and comforted both Don and me during the first days of recovery.  There…..I’m done with that subject.  Back to FUN things!
Landscape crews remain hard at work in this never ending heat with triple digit temps every day.  They are a hardy bunch!  I salute them for all their hard work.  You’d just never realize how much trimming it takes to keep the resort looking nice and fresh!
tour 005I believe the park is going to try composting some of the trimming debris.  I see a huge pile of brush way over behind the dirt piles in the undeveloped area of the property.  That would certainly be a great way to conserve on trips to the landfill if the project is successful.
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Say hello to the folks at the puppy park.  These folks gather about the same time of day so the puppies (and people) get a chance to chat and play.

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Texas Hold’em players still gather several days a week.  That real young looking guy to  the left of Avis is our son Anton.  Don fed him to the card sharks that day.

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Even while you are away, the mailroom stays busy.  My good friend, Connie Morin, was on duty when I went to pick up a package.

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While out on rounds, I passed by Pat Mitchell’s house and waved at her Mom, Billie Huntley.  Billie goes with us to Bingo every week & can be seen up at the SanTan room playing canasta every day without fail.

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Bill Wrightson is another familiar site around the park.  This day he was out taking his golf bag for a walk.  Usually he has a camera with him & has contributed some wonderful bird photos for this blog.  Bill does a lot of volunteer work for the golf course.

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Say Howdy to our Maintenance Manager, Will Updyke.  Will has the pleasant chore of driving the garbage truck to the landfill while Don is recuperating. 

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I saw this cute baby dove sitting on a park bench & couldn’t resist a photo.  I know the doves can be a nuisance, but babies sure are cute….and I’m an avid bird lover.

dove nest

This kind of light fixture is very popular & almost every one of them winds up as a nest box for the doves while you are away. 

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This clever homeowner, however, found a device to keep his light fixture “dove free”.  I had to smile when I saw this one.

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I thought I’d post a photo of the flowerbed in front of my house.  It looks so nice and colorful … in the summer time when no one is here to enjoy it.  Come winter, these plants die back & look ugly.  I hate to uproot the healthy plants but they bloom in the opposite season!  Crazy!

Yesterday was “Banana Split” day up at the ballroom.  There were all kinds of fruits, chocolate, toppings, nuts, etc. that folks brought along to share so we could build our own sundaes.  It’s always nice to have an excuse to get together.
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Saw this in the Dispatch last week.  Looks like Wendy’s is going to rebuild a new facility on Florence Blvd.

I was very disappointed to read that the United Football League won’t be returning to Casa Grande!  The city built them that fantastic sports complex out by Francisco Grande Hotel and it only got used for that one season.  We enjoyed driving out there to watch their practice sessions.  Toooo bad.
I think that brings me up to date with the latest news.  Hope there was something posted here to keep you interested.

Monday, August 09, 2010

We’re Back

I’ve sat here for 10 minutes already trying to come up with the words to thank ALL of you for your words of encouragement and thoughtfulness regarding Don’s surgery.  “Thank You” just doesn’t seem to be enough.  To come home after such a stressful stretch and find our email, voice mail, and postal box filled with your kind words was overwhelming.  Every message regardless of how small was like receiving a warm and heartfelt hug.    With your best wishes for a speedy return and a large jug of potent pain killers, Don is on the way to recovery.  Thank you one and all.  Give me another day or two and I’ll be back into cheerful reporting mode.

Wednesday, August 04, 2010

Bump in the Road

I see life as traveling through time.  As youth, we frequently stumble as we make mistakes while learning to “drive”.  In our adult years, we tend to speed and have to learn to slow down to enjoy life’s pleasures.  In our senior years, we can put it on auto pilot and make sure we enjoy every day and every mile…..but still we have maintenance problems or get an occasional flat tire along the way.  Well…… hubby Don has hit a nasty pot hole and needs some major repair.  He’s facing some ugly surgery day after tomorrow (Aug 6) and I’ll be staying with him at Banner Hospital in Chandler.  Thus I’ll be away from the keyboard for a couple days.  Not to worry though as he’s a tough old bird and should bounce back quickly with a whole new story line of jokes for his friends at the poker table or in the pool room.  To our housewatch customers……we have you covered.  I’ll only be off duty for three days but my son will be here and has a detailed map of all the houses to drive by on a daily basis. 

I’m attaching one of my favorite recent photos of Don and his cat named Hiway.  Strange name for a cat??  Not really because I bought her for Don many moons ago when he decided to buy a semi and go back on the road for a while.  I didn’t want him to get lonesome so sent along this furry friend to keep him company.  Because she grew up in such close quarters, she seems to think the only way to be happy is to be sitting on Don’s lap or sleeping by his side.  The two have driven hundreds of thousands of miles together and have become quite attached.

Wish us well.  I’ll be back at the keyboard next week sometime.

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