Blue Angels in San Francisco

Last week was Fleet Week in San Francisco. Allen lucked out and had an amazing view from the tower. He saw them practicing Thursday then watched the whole show on Friday from level 6 on Sutro! Here’s some pictures he took…  

    
    
 Saturday he was off work so we took Charlie on a long walk over in Candlestick Recreation Area (right next door to the campground).  

we took a break after about a mile so Charlie could rest her little legs

  

there are ground squirrels all over at the park and Charlie tries to chase them into their holes

 
Then we headed down to the Wharf to watch the Blue Angels from the ground. We lucked out and found a good spot at the end of an alley. Very neat! I didn’t try to get any photos, they were just TOO fast! 

After the show we went to Fog Harbor Fish House on Pier 39. I thought it was going to be better than it was. We had calamari and clam chowder (not nearly as delicious as The Old Clam House). Then I got the Mixed Grill (shrimp, swordfish and salmon), and Allen ordered the Wild Alaskan King Salmon. It had a super disgusting taste to it, almost like propane even though I’ve never tasted propane… So he sent that back and got the Pacific Cod (that was much better). After that we were thoroughly stuffed and headed back home on the bike. Luckily we had a few blocks to walk off dinner 🙂  

Mixed Grill

  

Alaskan King Salmon

  

Pacific Cod

 
Sunday we watched the Bengals play a really close game against the Seahawks. And we got to stay home because it was actually on local tv!

5-0 now! 

   
We wanted to put the valve in the jacks but there were campers parked where we needed to pull the truck to hook up the camper in order to do that… So that had to wait.  

 
We did try to clean the water filter. The water here is gross and we are going through filters that should last 3 months in half the time. We also have a screen on the hose which gets full of debris in about a week and lessens the water pressure considerably. But there’s nowhere around here to get replacement water filters, so we are stuck with trying to clean them for now.  

 I hoping to be out of here, if not this coming weekend, then sometime next week! So I started loosely planning our trip. I use the Good Sam trip planner because it lets you put in height requirements and maps out Flying J and Pilot Travel Centers and rest areas and campgrounds along the way. We are going to go through South Dakota to change our domicile then on to Dallas to bring down the tower at Fair Park. Hopefully that job takes us until Christmastime. I’m just excited to get the heck out of San Francisco and this asphalt parking lot!

A Little Camper Fixing

It’s kind of nice that Allen has been getting Saturdays off work. That doesn’t happen too often. But it gives us a chance to do more things… So this Saturday we fixed the ladder on the camper and lowered the top bunk in the garage to give us me more storage space. Continue reading

Yesterday was a Sad Day… 

Yesterday my mom laid the plaque for my brother’s tree. I wish I could’ve been there.

  
We ordered it from International Bronze when I first got out here to San Francisco. It took almost 2 months. Joe, the designer I spoke with, was really nice and helpful and I recommend them to anyone looking for a plaque.

It’s in Mt. Healthy Park in my hometown. Adam always loved the park and especially the pool. We spent many, many days there when we were younger. They used to have a putt-putt golf course that cost 15 cents, or you could pick up 5 pieces of trash and play for free -that was what we always did! Adam passed his test to swim in the deep end with ease, me, not so much. But one day when the pool was crowded he pretended like he hadn’t taken his test yet, there were a bunch of kids that were going to take theirs at once. (You just had to swim back and forth across the 10-foot part.) But when we all started swimming, Adam helped me and it was too crowded that the lifeguards didn’t see. So from then on I was allowed to jump off the diving board. And that’s all I did was jump, towards the side, holding my nose. No diving for me! Then I would doggy paddle to the ladder and get back out. Thank you Adam. I love you.

So yesterday was pretty sad.

To top it off, it was National Dog Day. (I’ll explain why this was sad…) I made Charlie a new doggy bed. I was Pinteresting, yet again, and found an idea for an envelope dog bed, or a snuggly dog bed, or like a sleeping bag dog bed. I knew I had to make it for her because she is constantly wanting under the covers.

I woke up 5 minutes before Allen’s alarm went off this morning to Charlie whining in my face. I lifted up the blanket so she could crawl under. Still, whining. I laid my hand on her. No more whining. What a baby! 🙂

So I made this bed and I’m pretty sure it instantly became her favorite. (She has 3 – One that came with her from her old family, one I made last week and now this one… Allen says Charlie’s camper footprint is getting too large.)

  

So when we went to bed, I put it in the closet in the bedroom, for some reason she likes it in there, and both sides of the bed now have other dog beds. So she went in the closet and that’s where she slept, all by herself, almost all night. Without me. I had to sleep alone. Well, not alone, I mean Allen was there, but he’s not the same as my puppy. (Sorry honey, I love you!) So after Allen fell asleep, which he always tends to do a lot faster than me, I was awake and sad because Charlie wasn’t next to me and thinking about my brother, and I think I was awake half the night. Not being able to fall asleep is the worst.

 But, today is a new day, and I get to try out my new Bug-A-Salt rifle! Unfortunately it is not a semi-automatic… I have to pump it and turn the safety off every time. But hopefully I get rid of all these flies that hang around in my front dirt yard!  Good ole San Francisco


By the way, I made Beef Stew for dinner last night if you want the recipe… Yum!

And here are the instructions for the doggy bed on SuzySitcom. One thing I did realize, then I had to redo it, is the instructions say to put the pocket piece and the larger piece right side together. But this is wrong, you need to put the pocket piece and the larger piece both right side facing down… You’ll see!

The City By The Bay

While Allen enjoys his view “from the office“…  

Panoramic view from atop Sutro Tower

  

Allen on top of Sutro

  

a zoomed in view

 
Charlie and I work on our tan back at the campground…  

Charlie getting in the way of my reading

  

This was a better spot but it didnt last long

  

Just keeping an eye on things

 
Here are some other jobs Allen’s worked on since I started this blog:

A Few Random Friday Thoughts… 

My neighbor Carmen recently got us (and by that I mean me, because really, Allen will never touch the thing…) a bread machine! I love it! I’ve been wanting to get one since we were in Florida this last time. Our neighbors Lyne and Terry had one and it smelled so good. They bring down their own flour every year from Canada because they don’t like the way American bread tastes. Anyway, I’ve been comparing models, and Carmen said she really wanted to get us something for sort of a housewarming gift, so, I’m the proud new owner of an Oster 2LB. Expressbake Breadmaker.

my very first loaf… i was excited and couldnt wait to try it.

I started with the traditional white bread in a 1.5LB loaf and it came out delicious. Then I moved on to the flavors… I’ve mostly used the recipes that came with the breadmaker but I’ve also ventured into Google territory for some yummy ideas.

I made a super scrumptious cheddar/garlic/herb type loaf that we ate one day then the next day sliced and drizzled with EVOO and stuck on the grill for a few minutes – SO good! We had the bread with a bacon-wrapped pork loin…yum!

Cheesy, garlicky, herby goodness… Please excuse the bites off the top, i couldnt help myself…

I tried Honey Wheat because that’s the kind of bread we like on a daily basis, but the recipe was a 2LB loaf, which is just too big for sandwiches. And I had not mastered the art of slicing by then. The next day we took off for Tahoe so it was moldy by the time we got back.

 The latest was a 1LB Italian garlic and herb loaf which came out perfect! It’s the perfect size for sandwiches. (Allen’s taken two to work already.) And I let it cool longer this time before slicing. I also didn’t use my fancy bread knife and bamboo bread slicer that I bought.

 I just used a non-serrated knife I got from the Dollar Tree a LONG time ago, and it worked great… Surprising, but true… So we have decided that the 1LB loaves are the way to go… My goal is to never buy grocery store bread again.

On another note, I felt my very first earthquake ever!!! I went to school (this super expensive one) out here in San Francisco for 4yrs and never felt one (I think I was on a barstool for most of them…) and then last year we were out here for about 5 months and I didn’t feel one then either. This one was crazy! I was laying in bed with Charlie, probably blogging or Pinteresting, and it felt like someone hit the camper. It actually felt like Allen backed up and hitched up to the camper, but I knew he was at work. So I thought A) someone was trying to steal our house with me and the dog inside! or B) one of these tourists driving a rental RV must’ve clipped our nose… Charlie and I both ran outside but nobody was out. All was quiet. I texted Allen and he then informed me it was an earthquake, that they felt it by the tower too. Yikes! But it was a smaller one, nobody was hurt, so that was good.

Begin Rant:

I’ve also been on the phone trying to order parts for the camper from Grand Design. We have a 2015 Grand Design Momentum 385TH. We just bought it at the end of March. It’s still brand new.  You’d think it would be fairly easy to get simple parts for it. Almost two weeks after sending the first “inquiry form” to Grand Design, we finally have parts on the way! (I honestly thought they would have excellent customer service being that they are still a new and fairly small company…)

While I was back at my mom’s house for my brother’s funeral and Allen and Charlie drove from Texas to San Francisco alone, a yellow pole at a tiny gas station jumped up and grabbed onto the ladder on the side of the camper, yanked it a little and busted the red light that’s back there.  So we need a light, and the bottom brackets that hold the ladder onto the camper.

We wound up having to get the part numbers from Grand Design then call a dealer to order them because Grand Design is not set up to sell directly to actual people.  I find this silly.  Luckily, Shelly at Lazydays RV in Florida was super nice and helped us out.  I probably should’ve called Palm Beach RV since that’s where we bought the camper, but oh well.

Anyway, while I was on the phone with Amanda at Grand Design I had her switch me over to Jerry in warranty (yes, I’m on a first name basis with these people). I spoke with Jerry multiple times when we were in Louisiana trying to take care of the radio/tv situation. Grand Design had the bright idea to put some Furrion products, and some Haier products in here. (To save money I presume..)  But they don’t communicate well with one another.  The radio in the living room is also a DVD player and that wasn’t working so Jerry sent us a new HDMI cord.  It worked then, but in hindsight I don’t think the cord was the issue.  We still have the same problem with having sound and no picture when we play a DVD but now we just unplug the TV then plug it back in.  It’s the cheap Haier TV.  In the garage (toy hauler) there is a car stereo that also plays DVDs.  But it constantly sounds like it is skipping around a CD in there or trying to spit one out.  Jerry also sent us a new radio that we swapped out.  That worked for a while.  I noticed Monday that it started making noise again.  So he is supposedly sending us ANOTHER radio to swap out and says if we have more issues we will have to take it in to have it looked at.  I’m trying to avoid that because we live in here full time and I’d rather not live at a dealership for days. Also, the closest Grand Design dealer is in Sacramento. And Allen will not be commuting to from Sacramento to San Francisco to work! Anyway, last time, Jerry took forever to send anything out, I mean he said he sent it then a week later I called to see where it was and he still hadn’t sent it. So fingers crossed he actually put it in the mail yesterday!

End Rant. 

Before we left for Tahoe, Allen’s buddy was flying home for the weekend and gave us a 10LB bag of potatoes. (He lives alone. Why he would buy a 10LB bag of potatoes eludes me. I’ll have to talk to him about that.) Anyhow, I’ve been looking at this bag all week. Then I decided that instead of letting them go bad, maybe I could freeze them. So I Googled… Then I made some frozen hashbrowns (you just dice them, drop them in boiling water for about 2min, drain and cool them, bag them and freeze them) and some frozen fries (same as above but you also fry them in oil for about 3min after blanching and drying, then cool, bag and freeze). Easy peasy. I still have over 5LBs of potatoes left but at least I got rid of some of them!

skinny fries

potato wedges (I sprinkled them with season salt when I took them out of the oil.

Last night I made 3-ways for dinner. Technically, 4-ways.  If you don’t know what that is, it’s because it’s a Cincinnati thing… We are weird like that. It doesn’t matter where we move to, where our domicile is, Allen will always love 3-ways and goetta. (I on the other hand despise goetta… The taste, texture, cooking it, yuck!)

Every time we go back to Cincy we have to pick up a couple packs of chili mix…

I like 5-ways. Allen likes 4-ways. Everyone likes a good 3-way. 😉

The night before last, I came up with a new concoction that was pretty tasty… Rum and Kool-Aid! My brother loved Kool-Aid so I named this “Ode to Adam”

I promise, Charlie didn’t drink with us!

Oh! And I almost forgot, I started growing my own green onions a couple weeks back. It is super easy. You just stick them in a glass of water after you use most of the green parts, change the water every couple days, and they grow on their own. Love it. This is my second round. After a while they get weaker and can’t stand up on their own, so you do have to start fresh after a couple of uses.

Thursday

IMG_1877

Monday

They grow fast!
And just for fun, here are a couple shots of Charlie hanging out with her buddy Samantha in the old parking lot that is our “yard” here at Candlestick RV Park

  

Allen’s 34th Birthday!

Yesterday Allen got back to being 3 years older than me. Just how I like him! I usually try to make him something for his birthday since if I bought him something it would be like him buying himself something. Anyhow, I think this year’s gift turned out a little too girly for him. I tried to make it a little more manly but…

I wanted to make a canvas with a quote on it. I look at Pinterest all the time and I’ve been seeing some ideas on there for a couple of months now that really got my attention.

So I had a 10×10 canvas. And I found an old book down at the laundry room here at Candlestick RV Park. I had modpodge already. I had to buy some sticker letters. And I had spray paint. Here’s how I did it:

First I modpodged the old pages of the book onto the canvas and let that dry. Then I put the sticker letters on how I wanted them. I looked for vinyl sticker letters but couldn’t find them. I checked Walmart, the Dollar Tree, and JoAnn Fabrics. No luck. And being this is San Francisco, I’m not too keen on cruising around in the truck. More on that in a second.

 Once I had the letters placed how I wanted, I spray painted the whole thing with silver. I could’ve went with hot pink, leftover from my pink flamingo, but, like I said, I tried to make it manly! I wanted to just cover part of the canvas and leave some of the book showing through but it was ridiculously windy and I was worried about overspray… So I nixed that idea. I let the paint dry and peeled the letters off carefully. Then gave it one more coat of modpodge to seal the deal.

 I made some wrapping paper out of the same book paper and tied it with twine. I thought it came out really cute. I’m not so sure Allen felt the same way. Ha!

 But I made him a quiche and some waffles for dinner yesterday (He loves breakfast for dinner. And breakfast for breakfast.) so I think his birthday turned out okay overall!

This was Saturday night

So back to this truck driving situation. I drove, with Allen in the passenger seat, Sunday, 2.1miles to the grocery store and back. I parked in a tiny lot. I drove down tiny San Francisco streets, I passed a MUNI (city bus) on one of them with cars parked on either side also. Allen says my driving privileges are revoked while we are here. I’m fine with that. I had big plans but I can’t drive that huge thing here. That truck is made for Oklahoma or Texas or even Florida. Not San Francisco.

DIY Pillow Covers!

I thought I would take full advantage of this super foggy, windy, kinda rainy, gloomy day here at Candlestick RV Park and work on an indoor project. I bought a beginner’s sewing machine a few months ago and I haven’t gotten to use it a whole lot yet. I didn’t want anything too complicated. I’ve never used a sewing machine before. I did some research and decided on the Janome portable one in “purple thunder”! It was about $60 from Amazon.  I’ve been trying little things here and there. I’ve made a pair of Allen’s ripped jeans into shorts… I’ve also made a couple of onesie’s into outfits for Charlie… Just by hemming them a little here and there…  I got these at the Flea Market in Dayton, Ohio.

The Bengals one is 0-3months and fits a lot better than the cheetah print which is 6-9months

 

She was NOT happy that i woke her up to try them on…

For a while now, I’ve been wanting to cover up these hideous (IMHO) throw pillows that Allen has had forever. They are brown and dark blue and just have no personality. Yesterday I took a trip to Walmart (yes, a trip, out here in San Francisco) and I picked up some fabric. I had asked Allen what color he thought would look good and of course his answer was brown or dark blue. No chance. So I got some pretty teal stuff. I kind of followed this picture I found on Pinterest. They are envelope pillow covers. Super easy. I’m not a master seamstress by far! But I’m liking the sewing machine!      

Here is my super simple drawing of how i did the cover…

Overall, I think they look great and add a pop of color!

The gold pillows I found at a thrift store in Cincinnati for 69cents each!

Before I got the sewing machine, I still wanted to make Charlie some clothes… So these are a couple of little things I made for her. She’s such a good sport!

fur coat and booties! She would only wear two at a time, no way was she wearing 4!

 

She didn’t mind this sweater. She got her arms stuck in the knitted holes while napping one day and that was pretty funny!

 

she absolutely hated the snood part!

Charlie’s 2nd Birthday Party!

It was very successful! She turned 2 on Friday and we threw a little BBQ shindig on Saturday at our house, parked at Candlestick RV Park here in San Francisco. All the guys from work came over, along with our neighbors and their dog. I think everyone had a blast!  We had really good weather so we got super lucky on that front!

The guys from work, and me


Charlie digging a hole

  
I got a Selfie Stick when I was at the airport, so we had some fun with that! We cooked burgers and Mets and brats and shrimp kabobs and a bacon wrapped pork loin, with baked beans and potato salad and ice cream cake. Those boys can eat!

the tower crew

I definitely needed to have some fun. I’ve had kind of a rough week, mostly bad dreams and nightmares. I did some Googling on  bad dreams and grief and apparently this is normal. Not fun. But normal. So I guess I’ll just take it as it is and hope for the best.
Charlie had fun also. I bought a squirt gun (for her birthday-what a crappy present!) and used that for the first time yesterday whenever she got nuts and started barking like a little maniac. I think it’s working!

Charlie this morning… Exhausted pup.

Oh Charlie…

I think my puppy is depressed. Allen says she is just used to being by herself all day since I’ve been gone and it’ll probably take her a couple of days to get back to normal. But she doesn’t really pay attention to me. She will go on walks, but then when we come back home, she just sleeps in bed. Lazy little thing.

 Yesterday we spread my brothers ashes in San Francisco Bay. Charlie came with us. I read online that it helps to let flowers go too so that you can kind of follow them out. So we did that. Allen suggested next time that we spread them in water (is it called spreading? Scattering?) maybe we should put a little inside the rose, in between the petals and float it out. I think that’s a good idea.



After that we went to the grocery store and even though we left here less than a year ago, I forgot just how much more expensive everything is! Goodness… So I need to rethink how I’m going to cook dinner to try and make it cheaper while still being healthy and delicious. That’s going to take some brainstorming, and googling….

At least we have a lime tree, lemon tree, and a loquat tree here in the campground, not even 50ft from our front door! I’m making chili today, so those won’t come in handy. Unless we have some rum and cokes, then the lines would be perfect!

    
Here are some pictures I snapped this morning to show more of just how tight everything is in the campground…  You can see some more here.