"if you are not living on the edge, you are taking up too much room"

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

a long overdue update!

No, South Dakota hasn't frozen over taking us into the ice age. :-) Matter of fact February was quite pleasant with very little snow and decent temperatures. March, so far, has "come in like a Lion" and I mean a REAL LION!

We found these Mountain Lion tracks in our driveway one morning a few days ago as we headed out for work. Then Monday evening the snow machine churned up and we got about 3" of fresh snow. When I looked out the living room Wednesday morning I saw some more fresh tracks that were not there the day before.

These tracks are right next to our bedroom window. YIKES! Look closely at the photo and you can see where his/her tail was dragging in the snow. Guess we wont have to worry about mice! :-)

We are getting more and more comfortable in "R" house.

We found the letter at a craft store in Rapid City and it was on sale, looks pretty good dontcha think? We are slowly decorating the inside as well. We have added some family photos and some of our friends/co-workers have given us items as house warming gifts. :-)
We are both looking forward to being able to sit on our deck and watch the sun set over the mountains. We do have a lot of Deer in our neighborhood and there are routinely 3-5 in our yard every morning and again in the evening. Rudee calls them her "Deer Babies" but unfortunately they are probably the reason the Mountain Lion keeps coming around.

Work has been fairly busy, especially on the week ends. I have been keeping busy writing a training program for our seasonal employees to help them get acquainted with the job. I have also been involved with expanding their safety and security program. Both of us are looking forward to next month when the work campers start filtering in. We have some returnees as well as lots of new folks to get acquainted with and of course once the work campers arrive summer is not far behind! :-) I'll keep you posted.

Saturday, January 31, 2015

where did January go?

I'm hanging my head in shame, I have not updated the blog all year! :-(
We have been plenty busy though getting settled into the house. We got some new furniture for our living room and I scored a really nice wood dining table with 6 chairs and two leafs from a craigslist ad and the guy even threw in 3 matching wooden bar stools.
The snow has finally started to disappear and we even had a day last week where temps hit the low 70's! The best news was it was on our day off so, of course, we got the Harley out and took a nice long ride through the Hills. :-)

Enough about us though, I wanted to introduce you all to my "little" brother, Jon. He is retiring from the fire department Monday and he and his wife Cherie will be starting on their own fulltime RV adventure.

Jon has worked hard and rose to the rank of Battalion Chief while also going to nursing school. Both he and his wife are Registered Nurses and have new contracts as traveling nurses specializing in emergency services. Trust me when I say if you are sick or injured and look up and see either one of them taking care of you, you're in good hands! Good luck on your first assignment in Vegas and congratulations, you both deserve a taste of the good life!

We are settling into small town life and earlier this month we attended the 2nd annual "Pine Beetle Bug Burn". The trees here in the Black Hills have been attacked by the Mountain Pine Beetle that kills a lot of the adult trees. They have been fighting back though and things are looking better but why not burn a giant one in effigy? Plus they get rid of the residents discarded Christmas Trees at the same time. Here is the "bug" before they lit it up

after watching it burn we did the "bug crawl" down the main drag where each bar/restaurant had music and drink specials. We ate, drank and finally "crawled" home at the late hour of 8:30 pm. We are becoming party animals I'll tell ya what! :-)

We are hoping the warm weather lasts for awhile but I'm sure that little fury rat in Pennsylvania will see his shadow Monday morning and we'll be in for 6 more months of winter! :-) I'll keep you posted.

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Big news alert! early Christmas present

We we have been working for the last month on an early Christmas present for ourselves. and yesterday it all came together. This is our "early" Christmas gift

We started looking at a few houses to kind of "test the waters" early last month. Our demands were fairly specific. We wanted to be near Custer, have room for the motor home to park, a two car garage for the bike and truck plus a view of the Black Hills, all within our limited budget. You can see we were asking for quite a bit. We scanned some of the local internet real estate listings for several weeks but found our choices pretty limited. We drove by a few and finally decided to take a closer look at one so we called the listing Realtor. She met us there the next morning and once we were inside it was disappointing. The house was fairly small with only 2 bedrooms, no garage, no view but it did have a nice big yard with access to park the motor home. We thanked her for showing it to us but it just wasn't what we were looking for. She told us she would keep an eye out and let us know if something popped up that met our needs then she mentioned, in passing, that there was a house that might be available but was above the price range we gave. She gave us the address for a drive by and her card if we were interested in looking at it.
We drove by and talked about it some and decided to take a closer look. We both felt like it was over our budget but thought we could at least use it to compare other houses to so we gave her a call and she came right over. She told us the house had been on the market for several months and the owner had already moved into a condo and was anxious to sell. One deal, early on, had fallen through and she felt he "may" be willing to lower the price below market value to sell it.
We liked the house and it met all of our criteria so, after discussing it for several days we made an offer on it. Most of you know how these things go, low offer, high counter offer. We certainly had a maximum price in mind for the house as I'm sure he had a "lowest I will go" price as well. We got his counter offer which was, as expected, fairly high and we figured this was out of our league. We made a final offer a little higher then our original and he accepted! We have spent the last month "riding the roller coaster" of mortgage applications, credit checks, home inspections, appraisals etc. That's probably the reason the blog has been a little sparse lately. We are both a little above our optimum stress levels! :-)
Last week all the stars lined up and the closing was set for 12/23/14. We did a final walk through with our Realtor and mentioned it would be nice to be able to put some things in the garage early. She called the seller and he said "sure thing" in fact he told them give us a key to the house so we could do whatever we needed. I love small towns, lots of nice people! :-)
We ended up emptying our cargo trailer into one of the garages and even prepped and painted the master bedroom and closet.
We, as of yesterday, are now homeowners once again. The house is 3 bedroom 1900 sq ft with 2 car attached garage that has a gravel pad next to it that is large enough to park both the motor home and cargo trailer. We are within the city limits of Custer so we have city water, sewer and, in an hour or so, cable TV :-)
Oh yea, we also have a view of the Black Hills.

Life is good, Merry Christmas everyone. I'll keep you posted. :-)