Thursday, October 11, 2018

Two steps forward, one island back...

Off we go! August 29, 2017

On August 17, 2017, Gary retired from full time work in aerospace (more on that later) and we moved out of our Coronado apartment into Fly. We'd had a great time living with our peek-a-boo view of San Diego Bay, and attempted to experience all that living on Coronado has to offer. Here's a look back at some highlights of our 18 months living in San Diego.

Our peek-a-boo view of the bay. (Broadstone Apartments)

The living room, just big enough for the few pieces of furniture we kept.

We could walk or ride our bikes along the bay in the evening.

Coronado has a small town feel. Every Sunday evening in the summer, they have a free concert in the park.
Bring your chair, a picnic, and an adult beverage and watch the little kids dancing to the music. Or you can dance, depending on how much adult beverage you enjoy.

While we lived on Coronado, our granddaughter, Riley was born!
She was smaller than she's about 3 months.
Our apartment, middle of the pic
(just above the guys in the parking lot)

We took the opportunity to sightsee...even after living in Southern California for 20 years,
there were still plenty of things we hadn't done yet.

We really enjoyed having friends come to visit! Here I am with Dona Watson.

Gary took sailing lessons at the Navy yacht club. The bay is perfect for beginners.
With his flying and paragliding experience, he took to sailing really quickly and we rented a sailboat many weekends.

Evan and Bev
Kamie was a natural!
Bev and Riley in front of the Del
Time to go! After 18 months, Gary decided to retire, so we said goodbye to Coronado.
We'd downsized even more while living there, and emptied out our storage unit by
 donating and giving away major appliances, yard equipment, and more furniture.

When we arrived at the apartment, we had 12 of these crates.
We fine-tuned down to three, and put them in long term storage.
The kids came to celebrate Gary's "last day" of work with a lovely dinner at a fine SD restaurant.
(L-R Bev, Josh, Kamie, Lindsay, Evan, Gary)
Words in quotes will become clear later. 

While we were living on Coronado, I wrote a completed my last novel,
Misdirect, A Novel of Spies, the Sahara, and Searching for God. 

'Bye, San Diego!

Life with Riley

September, 2017

For our first full month of full timing, we parked at Newport Dunes Resort and RV Park in Orange County, CA. Lindsay had returned to work after Riley's birth, and we volunteered to keep her for the month. It was a great way to spend time with her and get used to retirement and full timing.

Although the sites are small, we were able to fit both cars in.

There's a lot to do near NP Dunes RV resort. It's within walking distance of Balboa Island, and a short drive to beaches and Long Beach Aquarium, and DisneyLand. Fair warning, this post is a lot about Riley. No apologies, Nana Bev's got the keyboard.
One lovely day, we rented a Duffy boat and toured Newport Harbor.
Riley's still deciding if she likes boating.

Aunt Kamie and Riley
Captain Josh
Because he grew up near here, he knew a lot about the harbor so we had a great tour guide.
Uncle Evan and Riley
Lindsay and Riley
Riley's showing her love for Texas A&M which she comes by naturally.
(Mom and Uncle Evan are Aggies.) Whoop!

We took a stroller walk daily, and Riley
loved the swings next to the lagoon.

How to keep a 6 month old busy. Water and teething rings.
On our last night, family came to have dinner and send us off.
L-R Gary, Bev with Riley, Debbie Valerio, Alyssa (Josh and Lindsay's niece), David Valerio, Lindsay and Josh Valerio

Thursday, July 16, 2015

Interior goes from blah to that's much better

Before & After
Fly gets a Makeover

Fly's interior decor was already really nice, but I wanted to add some color for a pop of interest. I think you'll agree the look is better and more homey, and best of all, didn't cost a lot because you don't need much when you live tiny. (Feel free to hum "A Woman's Touch" from Calamity Jane)


I took measurements and pictures of the interior and found these fabrics in Joanne's. I told myself, "self, as soon as you find something that makes you happy, that's it!" I liked all of these, but I really wanted them together in the same pattern. The hunt began. (Pictures are below relevant text)

Before: Vanilla. Beige leather couch, neutral carpet and taupe throw pillows. yawn. (The storage cube, with a small tray on top, from the dorm section of Target doubles as an ottoman and also holds books and magazines.)

After: An inexpensive throw rug with some colors and a sneak peek at the reversible throw pillow with the new fabric. The rug is lightweight and rolls up for travel or cleaning day.

Before: The Newmar standard issue bedroom set is good quality. Now to add some personality. Turns out, the new bedspread became the new palette.


After: I scored this set at Anna's Linens going-out-of-business sale. ( :-( sorry, Anna.)  It's a Croscill pattern that has both maroon (gig 'em Aggies!) and Air Force blue (Off we go!), and some other fun colors, so I scored the combo look I so wanted. Our daughter reminded me she has the same pattern in her townhouse, so I realized that's another reason I like it so much, it already felt like home! Good taste, Lindsay!

Our his and hers blankets are proof that Air Force blue and Aggie maroon can live side by side in peace. (Unless the teams play, but we all know Aggies would whoop AF...)

 Before: The dinette area. Meh.

After: The same fabric (a set of curtain panels, trimmed and hemmed) carry the pattern into the living area of the rig.

Before: The Ventana dashboard is sloped, so it's not suitable for shelving. We'd resorted to covering it with a shop cloth to prevent dust. No bueno.

After: Much better. I used the other curtain panel, trimmed and hemmed. The weights in the ends  help keep the fabric in place. When I cut the drape, I had enough left over for the steering wheel. Yes, I've seen those steering wheel-to-table converters you're thinking of, but we usually swing the driver's seat around to use as a recliner, so a table there would be awkward.

Here's the driver seat in recliner position:


Bonus pic: Here's a great tall basket I found, and added a "lid" using another round basket. I then lined the cover with cork. We can set our drinks or remotes on it, and then when it's time to move, the lamp fits inside for a safe ride. Score.


I'm glad we don't have to give up personal style and homey touches even though we're rig-living.

See you on the Fly! 

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Transitions - the backstory

In July 2014, we bought a 34' Newmar Ventana Diesel Motorhome with the idea that Gary could take his powered para-glider with us on vacation (more on that sport in a future post.)

We named her "Flight Risk," or Fly for short. Considering Gary's background as an Air Force pilot, as well as his current hobby, the name seemed appropriate. (Besides, I like the term, "fly" as in "your new outfit is fly"... so don't think of the insect. Think of the coolness.)