I can’t say how many times I’ve told myself I should write more on this blog. The bottom line is I just don’t think about it very often and when I do think about it I’m usually doing something else. A lot of the things I do usually end up on either Instagram or Facebook.
A few highlights over the past year before we get to some pictures:
I got a 3D Printer, got a chance to visit my family in Tennessee, a lot of yard work in the back, some camping trips with the guys and one with the family, and a family trip for a week to Palm Springs. All in all it’s been a pretty busy year.
Lets start with the 3D Printer. I’ve been wanting one, now I have one. There’s been several things I’ve printed. A hand full of parts, Easter Eggs, hair accessories, a pistol. I’ve had a lot of fun using it and there’s still several items I would like to print and find the time to work on.
Towards the end of February I got the chance to travel back to Tennessee to visit my Grandpa for his 86th birthday. His health hasn’t been doing very well and being on the other side of the country decided that I should make the trip in case I don’t get another chance to see him. According to his own words he’s “doing ok and doesn’t hurt, he just has some trouble breathing while moving around”. Grandpa was a soldier in Korea and has worked 30+ years as an Iron Worker and had his own welding and wood shop. Years of breathing in iron dust from welding has taken its toll on his health. During my visit my mother was there helping to take care of him and my little sister got the chance to come up from North Carolina with her family for the weekend, so I got to visit with most of my family whom I haven’t seen in almost 9 years at that point.
This past year the guys and I went camping twice. The first time we got a cabin up in Alpine AZ for the weekend. That was the last week of April. Weather was nice up there even though there was a forest fire no more than 5 miles from where we were staying. The second time we went camping was in August up at Stoneman Lake, which is about 30 minutes south of Flagstaff. We got a chance to do some target shooting up there. On our second trip we made some campfire chili and a pan of cornbread. Both turned out really good.
As a family we did 2 trips this year. The first we took a trip to Palm Springs for a week. We got a chance to do some hiking, visit a Cherry Festival. We drove out to San Clemente for a day on the beach, visited Elvis’ Honeymoon house and stopped at Shields Date Farm on our way home. We spent a lot of time by the pool at the resort. For me the best part of the trip was getting to go back to San Clemente. While in the Marines I was stationed at San Mateo and would often go to San Clemente with the guys. It brought back a lot of memories. Our second trip of the year was to take the kids camping at Lo-Lo-Mai Springs Campground. Fortunately this place has bathrooms and showers available. We also took one of our dogs with us, Finley. Finley also managed to get himself locked inside the Jeep. Lucky for him the window was slightly cracked, it was parked in the shade, and it had rained earlier that day so it was nice and cool. We did manage to get him out after about an hour. He got lucky and stepped on the lock button when I called him.
Lastly lets move on to the house. There’s been a lot of work to the back yard over the course of the year, especially over the summer. We had the back yard leveled and burms put in place. We had irrigation turned on and a patio put in around the pool. We also planted 3 trees in the back yard (2 Willow Acacia and a Desert Willow) removed the mesquite tree that was out front and put in a thornless Palo Verde. We removed all other trees except for the Fig tree (which is doing good).