Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Catching Up

Catching Up

As this post is started, March 20, we are in Las Vegas and have been here since March 9.  Came to see Heidi, Joey, Landon, and Julian, and also the UNM Lobos in their conference basketball tournament.  The Lobos were "one and done" the day after we arrived (which saved me from buying any more tickets), but we've had a grand time with the grand-twins.  They will soon be on the move.  Moving to Miami.  To the twins (age four this May), Miami is Mommy's -ami.  Get it.  My ami vs. your ami.  We're moving to Mommy's ami.

I'll briefly fill in the time since the last Tuzi-posting in November.

Susie and her good friend, Gay Blech, did their annual thing - matching pajamas for the annual PEO Christmas party.

The twins came to Cedar Crest for Christmas.

We had even more snow after Christmas.

In mid-January Mike, Karen, and Jason came from North Carolina, and Jeff, Malia, and Macy came from Colorado to celebrate Jason's 16th birthday, see us, and to do some quality inner-tubing (like   the boys and I did back when they/we were young-er.)

Jeff had some videos posted on Facebook that still may be accessible.

Here are the three Easterling cousins.

iPads everywhere.

One thing we did that was very special was to have an open house to which several of Mike and Jeff's boyhood friends and their parents came.  Don't have any pictures, but a fine time was had by all.  Lots of memories.  Lots of laughs.

In February we went back to M.D. Anderson in Houston, where, as we reported via our email list, Susie had a CT scan that showed no sign of cancer.  The surgery in July removed the source and nothing has shown up elsewhere.  Hallelujah!

Then on March 3 we celebrated grandson Andrew's graduation from the Albuquerque Police Academy. 

Now, he's out there - making Albuquerque a safer place.  Also, recovering from an appendectomy and prepping for his wedding to the lovely Amy on April 15.  There must be a tax joke in there, but I won't try.

Here's a picture of the couch on which I spend a lot of time.  I've had the feeling that somebody was watching me.  Doo-doo-doo-doo.  Anybody you recognize?

All these good times led us to decide to get Tuzigoot out of storage and travel to Las Vegas.  Hadn't been driven in a year and a half.  So, here we are.  All has gone fine - no Tuzigoot problems and we've had a good mix of leisure time and family time.

Waiting for Grami and Grandpa.

Quality Time

I had one activity on my Vegas Bucket List and, since the Vargas family is moving to Miami,  decided now was the time for it -- ride the High Roller really big Ferris wheel.   

The High Roller is 550 ft. high and makes one circuit in 30 minutes, a sedate pace that translates to a speed of .65 mph.  So, you don't have much sense of motion.  But, lots of great views.

The capsule we rode in.

Selfie, anyone?

Yesterday's Bucket List activity for Julian and Landon was a visit with the Easter Bunny.  I told Heidi and Susie that that brings up bitter memories for me.  When I was a kid, starting at about the age of the twins, neighborhood bullies called ME "Easterbunny."  Easterling - Easterbunny.  Get it?  But, I choked back the tears and went along.

The boys were summoned for their interrogation and picture with the lurking Easterbunny.

I snuck a photo of the encounter.  All went well.

One morning in Vegas I made a trip to the Clark County Museum.  The museum has a nice collection of old machinery and buildings along with photos and descriptions of the county’s history.  Also, the museum has a residential street with period houses that have been transported to or recreated on the museum property.  

Early attempts to settle the area, including by Mormons sent by Brigham Young, and to develop mining or farming mostly failed.  In 1902 an area ranch was subdivided into town lots and sold.  Thus, Las Vegas was born.  In 1931 gambling was legalized.  Gambling and the quickie wedding and divorce business led to the boom that grew into present-day Las Vegas.  The wedding chapel in the background of this picture is the Candlelight Wedding Chapel which was moved to the museum from its downtown site.

 Here's an interior shot:

Among the celebrity weddings, Michael Caine, Bette Midler, and Whoopi Goldberg were married in this building.

Was anybody reading this blog married in Las Vegas?  In the Candlelight Chapel?  A museum display said that at one time, maybe continuing to the present, 5.5% of the weddings in all of America were in Las Vegas!

Sample antiquities:

The block of houses representing various decades is called Heritage Street.

Here's a predecessor of the Oasis RV Resort, where we stayed.

A touch of home: The museum had a temporary display of pueblo pottery, most of it, as in this picture, from New Mexico.

The museum is in the far SE corner of Henderson, half-way, it seems, to Boulder City (which is another interesting piece of Nevada to spend some time), should you some day be in the area and want to do something other than a losing activity, such as playing the poker machines or watching Lobo basketball.

One evening in Vegas I saw this double cloud.  Maybe something from Area 51 in those clouds.

Our last night in Vegas we went to the Donny and Marie (Osmond, just in case you’re not up on your celebrities) show at the Flamingo.  They put on a great show, blending material from their days as child stars to the present.  The neon billboard on the Strip says their show has been voted #1 since forever.  We enjoyed it a lot.   

Before the show we went over to the Bellagio to see their atrium decorated for Easter.

We had hoped to see the water show out in front of the Bellagio, but it was canceled because of wind conditions.  We would have high winds for much of our trip home.
From here, we're going Wednesday, March 23, to Camp Verde, AZ, which is in the Sedona area, also near  the Tuzigoot National Monument.  After that, maybe the Phoenix area, maybe elsewhere.  We'll be in touch.

Susie and Rob