Archive for the 'Texas 2006' Category

May 20 2006

Retirement’s not so bad

Published by under Texas 2006

We’ve (mostly Richard) been working on getting our rig ready for the road. Our icemaker sprung a leak a week or so ago. It’s in the water line to the ice-maker so it’s just turned off. Have no idea what it’s problem is and how we’ll get it fixed. He’s having fun running electrical lines and other kinds to hook up a camera to the back of the truck so he can see to hook up to the trailer. We found a portable sink that holds three gallons of water to put in the truck so except for a way to heat or cool it (without running the engine) it’s got everything it needs to be a not so mini-motorhome.

Dom is in boy’s baseball – first year of player pitch – and they will be in the playoffs beginning the week of Memorial Day. Their current record, with one game to go, is 9/4/1. He hit a double today that ended the game as that put his team 10 pts. ahead of their opponents! Games are called for pts ahead or time or innings – usually time.

Too bad Dayna had to miss her son’s great hit. She’s on a five state trip this week – TN, KY, IN (Evansville – Donna), IL, and MO – about 1000 miles of driving. We gave her our old GPS program & antenna after we got a new one that works a whole lot better. She’s really been glad to have it and is the only auditor with one.

She and Deidra will drive to IL next week to be in a wedding so she’ll miss Dom’s playoffs, too. She’s missed a lot with this job.

My dad fell a couple of weeks ago and cut himself on some glass, requiring 7 stitches in his forehead and 8 in his hand. Dayna was there shortly afterward and said he had a great shiner. This week my parents and Marie all have bronchitis. I was ready to fly out again but Mom’s LTC ins. has finally kicked in providing help four days a week. That, coupled with Daddy’s three, means someone is there everyday to help them. Hopefully, this will be all they need for awhile.

Our niece Patricia, Greg’s oldest, won first place in a state-wide chemistry exam. She just discovered last year that she really likes chemistry but isn’t sure what she wants to do with it. She goes to a two-week chemistry camp this summer and could win a spot on the team that goes to Korea to represent the US.

3 responses so far

May 09 2006

Retirement Lunch

Published by under Texas 2006

The team I have worked with the last 8 years invited me to lunch today. We met at Pappadeaux Seafood in Richardson and had a nice meal. I will be on the payroll until the end of the month, but I have turned in my laptop and other stuff and have cleaned out my desk. I don’t know if I will need to go in again to sign some final paperwork or not, but I am really feeling great about all this.

The guys gave me a gift card to a nice steakhouse as a going away present. Thanks guys, very much. Dianna and I will enjoy it.

I went down to Ft. Worth this afternoon to pick up a motorcycle loader I am buying from another Escapee. Unfortunately, the place he took it did not have it removed from his truck yet so I have to make another trip tomorrow afternoon. Then I have to work with a welding shop in Denton to fabricate a mount that will allow me to move it backward and forward on the truck bed. I need to move it to the rear to load, but move it all the way forward so the trailer will clear the motorcycle on a 90 degree turn.

Between physical therapy three days a week and getting ready to leave here on the 8th of June I am staying very busy. I hear that retirement is just as busy, or more so, than working a regular job. I hope not, but it sure is starting out that way!

4 responses so far

May 01 2006

Finally some big news!

Published by under Texas 2006

Retirement!  I will not be returning to work.

I can’t tell you how much I have looked forward to this.  I have been dreaming about it since I first started working and have grown more and more anxious over the past few years.  The time has finally come.

I had my 6 week post operative check up today and the Dr. says everything is coming along nicely, but that he still wants me to continue with physical therapy for another 4 weeks.  He signed a form that releases me to return to work on June 1st.  With that in hand I notified my manager this afternoon that my last day on the payroll will be May 31st, but that I will not be back to work.  He told me he already expected it and was happy (jealous) for me.

We plan to stay here in Denton until about June 8 when we will leave for Livingston, TX so we can get our TX drivers licenses.  I need a Class A Non-commercial license to tow our trailer with the big truck.  We will take the grandkids with us and make our way out to California to spend a little time with Dianna’s parents before heading to who knows where.

So, there it is.  It feels good.

7 responses so far

Apr 30 2006

New Laptop

Published by under Texas 2006

In preparation for the day when I do not have the use of the company laptop, I purchased a new one yesterday. It is the Sony Vaio TX750P/B. The main reason for selecting this laptop was its size, but I still wanted something that would not be obsolete in just a few months. I wanted something very small so I can use it for my GPS while driving. I have been using my Thinkpad which was small, but this is even more so. It make it less obtrusive while sitting on the dash.

This laptop has a wide screen that is only 10.7 inches corner to corner. The screen is only 9 3/4 wide and 5 1/2 high and I have never seen a screen as thin as this one. It is only a little over 1/8 of an inch. This makes the print on the small side, but since I usually have it actually sitting on my lap when I am using it out of the truck, it is readable. I have experimented with increasing the size of the font, etc. and found it is OK as it is for my needs.

It has a decent processor (Intel 753), an 80G hard drive (only 4200 rpm), built in wireless, bluetooth and even Cingular Wireless WAN (at $80 per month it won’t get used!), and a built in double layer DVD burner. With the battery, which should last between 4 1/2 to 7 hours, it only weighs 2.8 pounds. Really a featherweight. It came with XP Pro.

So far it seems great for my needs and I have only found two things I need to get used to. The keyboard does not have all the keys nor the great feel of my Thinkpad and I am very used to the button mouse. I have never liked the glide pad but that is all this has.

One other nice built in feature is the A/V capability. It can be used as a DVD player without even booting to Windows so it is also a basic portable DVD player. Of course the sound is terrible over the built in speakers but with a headset it is very nice. I don’t know that I will use that much but who knows.

So, the fun of customizing, loading software and moving data is already underway. It will probably take several days to get it set the way I want.

3 responses so far

Apr 26 2006


Published by under Texas 2006

I’ll post an update! I am continuing to improve. That’s it.

Didn’t think that would work. I go to PT three times a week and do stretching and strength exercises. I am able to do more all the time, but I am still sore after each session. That’s good they tell me. I also walk about one and one half miles every day. All in all I am making good practice and the ache in my back is less and less. I can no longer call it back pain. I go to the Dr. next Monday for my six week check up and will know what happens from here. I am still not released to go back to work and really don’t see how I could as long as I continue with PT. It takes all morning and I sure don’t feel like doing much all afternoon.

Dianna has returned from her week in California visiting her parents. They are both doing OK now. Seems she usually does not get there until things have settled down. By OK I mean that they are both at home, not in the hospital. The staph infection is much improved which is a good thing. They do have part time help coming in three days a week to help with cleaning and other chores.

Dom is in baseball again this year so we get to go to his games every week. He is doing pretty good this year.

Deidra is in her last year at the mid-school in Denton. Next year she will be attending the new mid-school near her home. That will be really nice. She currently catches the bus at 7:50 and does not get home until 5:00. That one and one half hour bus ride after school is a huge time waster.

That’s about all I can think of right now.  It’s tough to post when there is not much going on, but I appreciate everyone thinking of me.

6 responses so far

Apr 12 2006

Vitamin D

Published by under Texas 2006

Now I am following another Dr. thread as a result of one of the tests prior to my  back surgery.  Found out I have very poor bone density.  My GP said I was way to low for a man (I assured him I was, which he already knew) and ran a calcium and Vitamin D test.  My vitamin D came back way low.  No idea why.  I am taking mega doses for the next four weeks to see if that helps. Then I have an appointment with an endochrinologist to see if we can figure out why and if it is anything to worry about.  All my other blood work is fine.  The only blessing in all this is that I have met my out of pocket insurance maximums for the year so I have free medical treatment for the rest of the year.

I really don’t want this blog to turn into a running commentary on our medical conditions but it seems the easiest way to let everyone who has an interest in us know what is happening.

I am going to PT three days a week and seeing progress in my strength and flexibility.   At this point I don’t know if my backaches are due to the surgery or to the workout these two sadistic young ladies put me through.  It is certainly a big improvement over my condition prior to surgery.  Then I had back pain.  Now I have backaches.

4 responses so far

Apr 06 2006

More Scam Artists

Published by under Texas 2006

We advertised our truck camper for sale on an online RV trading site a few days ago. When we bought it we thought we would use it for our Alaska trip after retirement and for vacations with the grandkids in the meantime. We have used it several times, but it is really not big enough for the grandkids and us anymore and we have decided to take our trailer when we make the Alaska trip.

Yesterday I received a nice response to the ad asking for photo’s and additional information. It sounded like they were interesed so I sent some photos and a nice response. Then today I received an email telling me that they had decided to buy it and went on to explain how they wanted to handle the payment. I would receive a cashiers check made out to me and sent from some company. The check would be for about twice what I am asking for the camper because the company owed the buyer that much money. I was to deposit the check and wire the difference to the buyer. Then they would make arrangements to pick up the camper.

Of course, I immediately realized this was a scam attempt. What many people do not know is that cashiers checks are very easy to forge and not at all secure. The banking rules in most states require that a bank make the funds from any deposited cashiers checks available within 24 to 48 hours. This they do. However, the actual behind the scenes check clearing process through the Federal Reserve can take up to two weeks. It often takes that long to find out the check is worthless.

I forwarded a copy of the correspondence to Yahoo security since the scam artist was using a Yahoo email account, not that it will do much good. You just have to be very careful. Never, never, never send or give anyone goods or money in exchange for a cashiers check without having your bank verify that it is genuine.

6 responses so far

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