Monthly Archives: December 2012

OWT-Return to winter white

01 Snowing Yarnell AZ (1024x678)

Sure glad I went out for propane the day before it snowed.

02 Sparrow & cardinal Yarnell AZ (1024x992)

Also glad I filled the bird feeders which were very busy during the snow.

03 Snowy window view Yarnell AZ (1024x678)

Yet unlike yesterday, this last morning of the year the sky is mostly blue with sun shining through.

04 Snow view of Weaver Mts Yarnell AZ (1024x678)

Slowly melting some of the snow away.

05 Sunset Yarnell AZ (1024x678)

I’m glad for that and already ready to greet summer.

06 Coopers Hawk Yarnell AZ (1024x678)

Coopers Hawk

And in only 33 days I shall enjoy summer again, just on a different continent.

07 Ringed Turtle Dove Yarnell AZ (1024x669)

Ringed Turtle Dove

So on this last day of 2012 I wish you all the best for the new year.


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Getting out of the house

01 Weaver Mts Peeples Valley AZ (1024x545)

Weaver Mts Peeples Valley, Arizona

I managed to roust myself out of the semi-warm RV Saturday.  I know I’m whining, it’s not as cold here in central Arizona with 47 highs and 27 lows as other places.  Just seems the older I get, the less I tolerate the cold.

02 Propane tank at Mountainaire Peeples Valley AZ (736x1024)

Didn’t have a whole lot of choice but to go out when one propane tank is empty and the other is going on two weeks.  That may not make a whole lot of sense to non-RVers.  I don’t turn on the propane furnace very often, maybe just a little in the morning and right before bed.  If used all day that thing can suck down 7 gallons of propane in two days.  I learned.  I do run small electric heaters most of the day and night.  Can only run two things at once on the 30amps currently plugged into.  Turn one off in the living area to either use the microwave or turn on the heater in the bedroom.  I keep the door closed to the bedroom all day as there’s just no sense in heating a room that isn’t being used.  OK, so the toilet seat feels a mite chilly.  Just make it fast.

03 Mural at Mountainaire Peeples Valley AZ (1024x768)

Peeples Valley, where I get propane, is only about five miles away.  Business wise smaller than Yarnell which sadly no longer has a fuel station.  Mountainaire Mini-Mart offers about the same grocery options as our Yarnell Grocery and that almost closed about a year ago.  Times are hard in our small community of less than 2000.

04 Weaver Mts SR 89 S Peeples Valley AZ (1024x456)

Heading home to Yarnell on SR89 south

It’s a short and scenic drive out here in the middle of nowhere.  Maybe now that I have my wheels back I’ll try to get out more.  Naw, it’s cold outside.

Deal and no deal

01 851 1919 Ford Model T Center Door at Galpin Ford Presott AZ (1024x768)

1919 Ford Model T, I think

It was certainly no deal to get my truck out of hock/repairs but it did make it home.  Now I list it for sale, again.  I’d really like to think the last thing, for a while, has been fixed.  But I don’t trust it any more.  I’m pressing for lemonade.

02 863 Ring SS knot $4 NOAHs Thrift Store Prescott AZ (1024x872)

While in Prescott one of my favorite thrift stores had a 50% off sale on quite a bit including jewelry so I made a few scores.

03 859 SS roses hinged bracelet from Hong Kong $6 NOAHs Thrift Store Prescott AZ (768x1024)

I just love sterling silver and consider it an investment I can wear, or sell down the road sometime.  The bracelet is from Hong Kong.

04 861 Barrett alpaca from Mexico $3 NOAHs Thrift Store Prescott AZ (1024x559)

“Alpaca silver” from Mexico isn’t silver at all but a metal alloy which can include copper, nickel, zinc, tin, lead or cadmium and is also called nickel silver or German silver.  It looks like sterling but doesn’t tarnish and is used in a lot of traditional Mexican and South American jewelry.  I like the look especially with the inlay on this Hecho en Mexico barrette.

05 857 Clip-on earings from Spain $3 NOAHs Thrift store Prescott AZ (1024x767)

Don’t know what metal these clip-on earrings are made of but they caught my eye and are stamped on the back “SPAIN”.”

06 002 Ring pot metal & turquoise $1 NOAHs Thrift Store Prescott AZ (1024x802)

This ring isn’t sterling silver either.  However, I am attracted to some costume jewelry.  From the1930s and made of pot-metal could have real turquoise, or not.  But what the heck, for a buck.

07 860 Ivory & gold bangle $10 NOAHs Thrift Store Prescott AZ (1024x768)

Saved the best deal for last.  Now I am all for animal conservation but just couldn’t say no to this pre-1989 banned antique elephant ivory bangle bracelet with a 14-karat gold wire.  Because of the sale got it for $10 and later found one online selling for $150.  So how do I know it’s really ivory?  There’s a couple ways to test for plastic versus ivory or bone.  Appling the tip of a hot pin produces a smell, either plastic or bone.  Plus ivory has a unique growth pattern that reveals cross graining or criss-cross growth patterns distinctively found only in elephant ivory.  And I can see these patterns.


So even though getting my truck repaired was certainly no financial deal at least I got some other great deals for the day.

What super savings have you made lately?

Still no lemonade

Yet another trip to the dentist today.  Been over a year now and I am so ready to have this done, over, fini.  The process of having implants to hold permanent dentures has been a trial yet I’m actually to the point of being able to eat pistachios, carefully and one at a time.  Another few weeks and everything should be permanently in place.  I’m rather excited about being able to bite and chew again.

01 Iron Springs Road AZ (1024x434)

About an hour drive north over the Bradshaw Mountains to Prescott

Borrowed Berta’s car to get to Prescott because my truck is still in the shop.  This lemon story gets juicier all the time.  Back to injectors being bad and this after replacing all eight of them only 14 months ago and just over 12,000 miles.  Direct Buy Warranty sent an inspector to the Ford dealer ICU.  The diagnosis, much like my shoulder, is normal ware for mileage and not covered by the warranty.  Thank goodness I’m not a Ford.  I’ve loved my Ford trucks for decades, even arguing in their defense.  No more!

I fired the warranty company and will see how long it takes to get my pro-rated refund. I would highly discourage anyone from buying after market vehicle warranty from this company that I don’t want to link to.

02 Truck going on tow truck NR GRCA NP AZ (1024x706)

Towed from the North Rim last summer

The story continues with Ford replacing the three bad injectors and once started a fourth one blows.  Now the Utah mechanic that replaced the last injectors is involved.  So the plot thickens and the outcome unknown.

03 Gaelyn holds the world Yarnell AZ (1024x678)

In the meantime, I had fun playing with the camera, tripod and remote.

When friends gather

01 766 Flowers & stuff at Berta's Yarnell AZ (1024x768)

Sometimes the best family to spend holidays with is your chosen family of friends.

02 770 Berta & Jim Christmas Yarnell AZ (1023x1024)

Berta and Jim

Berta, a restaurant owner and cook in a past life, put together one of those best of Sundays family meal of pot roast with carrots, potatoes, onions, and garlic with side dishes and a fruit torte for desert.

03 787 Donna Christmas at Berta's Yarnell AZ (838x1024)


When I walked into her house the aroma instantly caused me to drool.  No photos it was too yummy to stop for the camera.

04 792 Berta & Jim with pink flamingos Christmas Yarnell AZ (1024x1013)

Donna brought a re-gift for Berta and we couldn’t stop laughing while Jim tried to help put the wire legs on these flamingos.

05 761 Berta's cat Sara Yarnell AZ (1024x724)

Just the four of us, plus Sara, sharing a meal and loving friendship.  For me, that’s what Christmas is all about.  Sharing and love.

06 793 Flamingo center piece for Christmas at Berta's Yarnell AZ (1024x768)

And laughter.

Still watching the birds

01 660 Gambel quail & white-crowned sparrow Yarnell AZ (1024x677)

Gambel quail and fuzzy sparrow

Having no wheels means staying at home, a lot, where I spend many hours a day watching the birds.

02 698 Scrub jay Yarnell AZ (1024x1000)

Scrub jay

I’m not complaining.  At least not until the truck repair bill comes.  And then I might look like this ornery jay.

03 005 Male white-crowned sparrow Yarnell AZ (1024x651)

Male white-crowned sparrow

But in the meantime…

04 651 White-crowned female sparrow Yarnell AZ (1024x677)

Female white-crowned sparrow

Mostly I see the regular seed eaters.

05 654 House sparrow Yarnell AZ (1024x728)

House sparrow

Multiple different species of sparrows not always easy to identify.

06 009 Bridled titmouse Yarnell AZ (731x736)

Bridled titmouse

My first sighting this year of the titmouse, such a delightful word.

It’s really like a feeding frenzy.

08 672 Coopers Hawk Yarnell AZ (897x696)

Until the local Coopers hawk shows up.

09 674 Coopers Hawk Yarnell AZ (1024x678)

Then it gets kind of quiet around here.

Here’s hoping that all of you have a Very Merry Christmas, or whatever you want to call it.

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10 emails to santablog (350x350)

What are you doing in the meantime?

SWF–Gray sky turns to orange

01 Fog covered Weaver Mts & snowy trees Yarnell AZ (1024x678)

Saturday it snowed all day and the sky was that steely gray where I couldn’t see the mountains all day.

02 Snow on Weaver Mts Yarnell AZ (1024x678)

Then just before sunset the low clouds began to thin.

03 Cloud breaks over Weaver Mts Yarnell AZ (1024x678)

And finally break apart just a little.

04 Sunset over Weaver Mts Yarnell AZ (1024x348)

As the sun set behind the snowy Weaver Mountains a touch of color appeared.

05 Sunset over Weaver Mts Yarnell AZ (1024x346)

Then the sky began to glow.

06 Sunset over snowy Weaver Mts Yarnell AZ (1024x523)

And revealed a marvelous show.

07 Crescent moon Yarnell AZ (1024x678)

Including the crescent moon.

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Off to Prescott for truck repairs

I finally took my defunky truck in for repairs today.  I’ve written plenty about my lemon on the other blog.  I’m told some kind of vacuum leak is causing it to not start when the engine is warm.  Plus there’s a fuel leak.  Should be able to pick it back up Thursday.  So guess there will be a chance to go thrift storing, again.

01 Thrift store jewelry (1024x768)

Artists pallet $1 and split-twig figure earrings SS $5

Did pick up a couple of nice pieces of jewelry today at very good prices.

03 Iron Springs Rd N (1024x768)

Iron Springs Road heading north to Prescott

And the drive to Prescott was gray and gorgeous with brushy vegetation contrasting with snow on the Bradford Mountains.

02 Mural along Granite Creek Prescott AZ (1024x471)

Mural along Granite Creek Prescott

Plus Berta and I went to lunch at the Dinner Bell next to Granite Creek where I had a delicious gyros which I have difficulty finding.  I’ll definitely be back there again.

OWT-Bird watching on a snowy day

01 Morning dove in snow Yarnell AZ (1024x678)

Morning Dove

On the occasional days of snow in central Arizona I am more than happy to stay inside bird watching.  Yet I felt bad seeing them shiver in the cold.

02 Sparrows & cardinals in snow Yarnell AZ (1024x719)

Cardinals and Sparrows

Maybe I lied on a previous post about the territorial cardinals as now I’ve seen not just two males…

03 Three cardinals Yarnell AZ (1024x534)

Three Cardinals

…but a third as well.  Can you see it?  They seem to barely tolerate each other.

04 Female & male cardinals Yarnell AZ (1024x576)

He’s watching her

Not that I have favorites but the brilliant red against the brush puts me in the Christmas spirit.

05 Birds in snow Yarnell AZ (1024x678)

I agree with Chris about how difficult it can be to identify some of the sparrows, especially during a feeding frenzy.  And who knows what sets them all off in a scurry to quickly return to the seed buffet.  (Couldn’t get the video to load.)  How many can you ID?

06 Towhee and sparrows on snow Yarnell AZ (1024x755)

One Towhee, and Sparrows

The towhees skittishly pop in and out of view making it very difficult to get a photo.

07 Sunset over snowy Weaver Mts Yarnell AZ (1024x542)

It pretty much snowed all day then slowly the clouds broke at sunset.

08 Good morning sunshine on Weaver Mts Yarnell AZ (1024x678)

And Sunday lived up to its name sparkling on the Weaver Mountains.

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