Friday, July 28, 2017


Where has this summer slipped off too?  I can hardly believe that we're nearing the end of July already.

Which brings me to this post.

Since moving to California we've been fortunate enough to reconnect with some friends.  We happily found out one of our high school pals live in the same area as we do.  I hadn't seen her in over twenty years!

We also had a girlfriend come out in June to visit.  It was so great to get to catch up!  Plus we got extra Mindy time during her stay.  Now I'm trying to figure out how to get her to move out here so we can se more of her.  LOL

Then this month we had another buddy fly out here on her family vacation.  We all were able to meet up and tour the USS Gabby Gifford, which was open to the public.  We couldn't pass up the opportunity to gear up for a photo op.

And so you know these are the people that Jim and I hung out with in high school.  He just happened to be the one taking the photos.

My only question is how have they managed to look exactly the same while I seem to have aged?  Am I hanging out with a new breed of vampires or immortals?

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Mini Vacation

So I have to play a bit of catch up again.  The past month we went on a mini vacation and I just haven't posted about it.  We drove from San Diego, CA to Salem, OR in the new convertible.  Darby went to a pet sitter and had a blast.  At first she didn't want to come back home.  Should I be insulted or relieved?  I'll take relieved.   The cats and bird had a friend stop by twice a day to take care of them.

Just a few highlights of the trip.

We went to the Charles Schulz Museum in Santa Rosa, CA.  Did the happy Snoopy dance over this.

We also went to visit the old Nike Missile site near San Francisco.  Jim's the history buff so we did do some exploring and he regaled me with the history.

We got a number of really good shots of the Golden Gate Bridge.


We managed to check out a few wineries.  Which was for my benefit to be sure.  Sadly wine tastings weren't like what I was used to.  They poured the wine, told me what it was and that was it.  I'm used to getting a bit more information on wine than that.  Sigh.

We also saw the USS LCS 102.  Jim's love of history prevailed once again.  Since he is assigned to the LCS community he thought it would be neat to see one of the originals.  It was!  Although it's a different type of ship it's very interesting.  Jim even chatted with the 'crew'.  The captain actually served onboard one of the original LCS.  How cool is that?

We made our way to Salem, OR and stayed with our friends, Jeff and Ruth. They took us to Powell's Books in Portland, OR.  This is a book lover's paradise.  I have to admit I was a bit overwhelmed.  The place is huge and I never go in saying there's a certain book I want.  I'm a wanderer and pick whatever grabs my fancy in the moment.

I did finally find a few books I wanted.  As did Jim.  Bonus?  We bought Cards Against Humanity and played into the night with our friends.

We were also able to get a tour of PT 658.  Noticing a theme here?  This time we were able to tour with our friends Jeff and Ruth.  Jeff actually organized this outing.

And of course we stopped to check out Ruth's college that she works at.  Willemette University.  What a beautiful campus!

All in all, it was a great trip.  Wish we had more time to explore Oregon and see friends who are now living there.  Next time.  I promise!

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

There's Something About Mary

1990 Mazda Miata
 Back in January of 2013, Jim purchased a 1990 Mazda Miata.

Almost one month to the day, Jim was in an accident and the insurance company totaled it.

You would think that would be the end of the story, but it wasn't.  We decided to rebuild.  She wasn't unsalvageable, it was just that it would cost more to fix her than she was actually worth.
Darby loves this car

You may have noticed I started referring to the car as her.  Yep, we named her Mary.  Hence the title.

So we repaired the damage and learned a lot along the way.

We spent many a weekend not only driving with the top down, but doing things on the car.  Be it just checking her fluids or repainting her.

She was repainted numerous times.  She was white and then gray.  Then white and black.  And finally tan and black.  Each time we painted her it was an experience.

She's had a few engine swaps.  One out of need and another just for more power.

I learned about brake jobs, sway bars, oil and other fluid changes and tires.

It became a project car.

And Darby loved going for rides in her.  What dog wouldn't want to go for a ride in a convertible?

We also learned the joys of Auto Cross.  Jim was able to participate in two Auto Crosses while we were in Norfolk.  Each time they were held on Little Creek Base and each time it was a day of fun.

You can tell they were different times because the car is a different color in each one.

One of my favorite memories is going to see Christmas lights in this car with the top down.  Best view of the lights ever!

She made the cross country trip from Virginia to California.  Two adults in a car with no A/C, power steering, cruise control, radio and only a driver's side airbag.  What fun!  And we went the scenic way!

She stayed in California in storage until we moved there.  Almost 7 months.  Of course that's when all the lovely weather arrived that was perfect for driving with the top down.

She became Jim's daily driver because the weather in California was perfect for it.

However, she wasn't as comfortable to us as she used to be.  Age does that to a body.  We would both be tired after a day out in her.  And Jim's Fitbit registered more steps than he actually took with her.  LOL

Fortunately, one of our friends is on the west coast and was happy to use her for auto crossing.

Sad to see her go, but glad she's still going to be driving and not parted out.

Farewell Mary!

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Happy Pie Day

Get it?

I thought it was funny.

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Off By A Few Days

We don't really do Valentine's Day, but we are excited about this.  Enjoy!

Sunday, January 1, 2017


Here's to a wonderful new year!

Thursday, December 29, 2016

Wanna Play Catch Up?

Michelle & Jim farewell from Norfolk
Okay so I realize that I've been quite tardy on my blogs lately, so bear with me.

As you may or may not know we've moved from the East Coast to the West Coast.  Such is Navy life.  Always an adventure!

Jim & Darby Cadillac Ranch
So we packed up what was left, after the movers had come, into our two vehicles and traveled from Norfolk, VA to Chula Vista, CA.  We had the two cats, our dog and the bird travel with us.  Don't worry we had the cats in a different car from the bird!

We stopped each night at a pet friendly hotel so that everyone could be out of the vehicle, stretch their legs and be reassured that all was well.  Thank goodness for a bit of  planning ahead of time.

Winslow, AZ
The animals did much better than I had hoped they would.  Although our female cat was none to pleased about life on the road.  Our boy cat on the other hand thought it was a great adventure!  And our little dog?  She loved it.

Even though we were on a deadline to be in California by the end of September, we managed to get in a bit of sight seeing again.

Our stuff has arrived!
We stopped in Texas at the Cadillac Ranch, went to the corner of Winslow, AZ, visited Las Vegas, NM where they filmed the original Red Dawn and of course stopped in Glendale, AZ to visit family.


Fortunately for us, our household good were delivered within days of our arrival.  This pleased the animals greatly!  They were tired of air mattresses and folding chairs.  And I was with them in that regard!
Adina & Michelle

It's taking adjusting since our move here.  We've been blessed with really great weather though.

Jim, Audry & Rebecca
We've caught up with old friends, visited a museum or three, and had company three times already.  Jim has even reconnected with old shipmates.  How great is that!

Michelle's parents even came out for a visit around Halloween.  Insert a squeal here.  To add to the joy her aunt and uncle also came to the area during the same time.  So we did a bit of sight seeing and then back to Casa de Davenport for a lively couple of rounds of Mexican Train.  We're kinda hooked!

While we're getting used to the west coast way of life (and let me just say here that people are way more laid back here, a bit too laid back in some cases), we decided to get museum memberships.  We've already been to the San Diego Museum of Man.  Michelle wanted to see the exhibit on Monsters.  Bonus was the exhibit on Beerology.  Since the exhibits are constantly rotating and this is not the only museum that we have a membership to, this will become a habit for us.

A habit that I look forward to.

The weather here is another change in our life.  We're used to colder climates.  Not that it hasn't gotten cold here, but not for long periods of time.  And people react differently here.  I had a friend mention that they hardly got any rain here.  Plausible since California is in the midst of a drought.  You wouldn't know it by how often people wash their cars around here and how often all the sprinklers for the lawns go off.  However, it has rained quite a bit since we got here.  So much that we've actually turned off our sprinklers for the time being.  People have been known to freak out when it rains here and will treat it like a snow day.  LOL

Michelle & Jim snow selfie
And don't even get me started on snow.  So after Christmas Jim and I decided to drive up to the Palomar Observatory.  We were hoping to go in, but it was closed.  Which was sad.  The drive was lovely until we got higher up.  There was snow.  It wasn't the snow that worried us, it was all the crazy people parking, on the road, to go play in the snow.  I'm still shaking my head over this one.  We even saw people shoveling the snow into the bed of their trucks and on top of their cars (by the way that's a jerk move and quite dangerous) to try to take some back.  I guess they don't realize that snow melts. Can't wait to see what other craziness we will encounter while we're out here.

A Peek At Us

Two really cool froods who always know where their towels are.