Category Archives: Trips

50,000 Books Anyone?

We bought 50,000 books last week (gasp!) – but– not for our home library.   We sell used books online and we were informed about a couple of ladies getting out of the business and selling their books, so we purchased them.  Off to Colorado we went on Monday afternoon.  Russell had only got about a 1 1/2 hours of rest because of staying up all night to get taxes done so he started the 13 hour drive tired.  Travelling through Flagstaff we saw a highway sign stating that I-17 was closed further ahead for a few hours because of dust storms.  So our first stop became a place of rest, fellowship and vittles for the body.

Thank you dear friends!

After travelling all night (Russell driving in one vehicle and my nephew and son driving in the other truck) we arrived safe and sound but weary and frumpy in body.  Hmmm, what a great way to start the work day. 🙂  But, I ask you, how could one not start feeling better when they are surrounded by a ton (literally) of books?  I felt better immediately, thank you very much!

What a great team we were.  Everyone had a job and everyone did it well… except for the times we were distracted when we saw an interesting book. LOL

Research being done

Yoohoo down there.  You’re not getting distracted and reading a book are you? LOL

How do you keep the little ones happy for long days of work.  SNACKS(!) and lots of them!

With 50,000 books there are going to be many, many books that we do not want.  Books that may be popular but are selling for less than a few dollars.  No library would want to have this many “donated” books so they end up going to the salvage yard where they are recycled.

Unbelievable isn’t it?  We had a total of 21 gaylords that went to the recycler.

It took us 5 days to finish the job and at the end the children, even though feeling triumphant over finishing,…

were so tired and took a well earned rest while waiting for their daddy to come back from an errand…

I don’t know what kind of husband you all have but mine is a “Conquer the road!” kind of guy.  So that’s exactly what we did.  We left the warehouse at 7p.m., had some supper and started the 13 hour drive.  Straight through.  Again.  This time, however, the road almost conquered him.  It was the middle of the night, in the middle of nowhere and when I say nowhere, I mean nowhere when the low fuel light came on.  Our truck doesn’t get good gas mileage anyways and pulling a trailer full of books it was much worse, so we drove slowly to help conserve what fuel we had.  Nothing was around.  Highway patrol was called and they said the nearest diesel would be 50 miles away.  

I’m happy to report that the story does have a good ending for we saw a sign for diesel fuel on a freeway exit.  We took that road and followed it for 6 miles until we came to the little town of Pecos, New Mexico.  What we found was a closed gas station with only 2 gas pumps.  Would this little place have 24 hour gas?  Yes, they did!  Big sigh of relief.

Russell was so tired and there were no lights on at the station so the first time he put his credit card in wrong.  So he came and got his head lamp because he didn’t want to mess up his one chance.

As an aside, let me tell you this was the 2nd time on this trip that we were close to running out of fuel.  It seems that this happens to us at least once per trip we’re on.  You’ve heard people say, if you’re a painter, everyone else’s house will get painted but not your own.  If you’re a mechanic, everyone else’s car will get fixed but not your own.  Well my husband and his dad used to have an Exxon gas station and Russell says there were many times that he (Russell) would run out of gas shortly before he got to his own station and there he’d be walking up the street, carrying a gas can wearing his Exxon uniform.  Everyone else’s car had gas but not his own.

So, there you have it – the scoop on clearing out 50,000 books and as an extra bonus, my life with a former gas attendant. 🙂


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Trip to Florida – Part III

On our last day in St. Augustine, Florida, we went to the Memorial Presbyterian Church – a church built and completed in 1890 after one year of construction.  To complete the church this quickly, workers worked 24 hours a day with two crews of 500 men.   The style is Venetian Renaissance.  Inside the church there is an Aeolian-Skinner Pipe Organ that has over 5000 pipes!  The largest pipes are 32′ tall!

Next, we visited the St. Augustine Lighthouse.  Since younger children can not go inside the lighthouse, my sister & I stayed behind with the little ones.  The tower is 165′ tall with 219 steps to reach the top.

We took the scenic route from St. Augustine to Jacksonville.  At this stop we saw dolphins (at least that’s what we think they were) several times.  It was so exciting.

The seashore is literally made up of millions of seashells.

My family.

My sister’s family that went sightseeing with us.

That night we had supper at Clark’s Fish Camp.  The place has mounts everywhere and that’s no exaggeration.  You would not find this place unless you knew about it.  You drive down quiet neighborhood streets and think you’re lost but surprise(!) you’re not.  The restaurant is at a dead-end.  All kinds of meat is served here.  Some of the foods the more adventuresome amongst us tried was frog legs, alligator meat and kangaroo.  I had the alligator, which is a white meat, and found it to be very good albeit chewy.

In Jacksonville, we went to see the Kingsley Plantation, a slave plantation that grew Sea Island cotton, sugar cane, corn, beans and potatoes.

Here Justus gets to see what it would be like to pick cotton.


The Kingsley Plantation

Slave quarters which were constructed of tabby.  Tabby is made of oyster shells which were burned and ground for lime.  This was then mixed with water and sand.  Tabby was pourable or could be made into bricks.

There was this friendly little armadillo there, too.  Interesting looking creatures aren’t they?

We then left Florida and travelled to Alabama where I got to spend a few days with a friend that I hadn’t seen in 15-18 years.  I even had a birthday while I was there.  They took us to a Japanese restaurant named Shogun where they cook the food in front of you and put on a show.  I’ve never been to anything like this and found it very enjoyable and the food very good!

I had a wonderful time traveling and was quite ready to stay longer, but since money doesn’t grow on trees yet, 😦  we had to head home.  You know what that means, right?  LAUNDRY!  I heard the mountain of laundry recently called Mt. Washmore.  🙂 I like that.  Thankfully, after a week, that mountain is no longer in sight.

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Trip to Florida – Part II

After leaving Sarasota we went to Ocala where my new niece by marriage lived.  Her parents operate a print shop but not only do they make business cards and those types of things, they make Vehicle Graphics, Screen Printing on t-shirts, Banners, Embroidery on shirts, hats and other things.  We got to go on a tour of the place.  What an interesting business.

Leaving Ocala, we landed in St. Augustine.  St. Augustine has one of the oldest structures in North America – the Castillo de San Marcos.  It was built in 1672 by the Spaniards and was never taken by the enemy.

The walls are 14-19′ thick at the base and taper to 9′ at the top.

The walls are made of coquina .  Wikipedia has this to say about coquina – “The stone makes a very good material for forts, particularly those built during the period of heavy cannon use. Because of coquina’s softness, cannon balls would sink into, rather than shatter or puncture, the walls of the Castillo de San Marcos.”

Over 400,000 blocks of  conquina were used to build the fort.  You can see that a lot of the stone is sea shells.

Here’s a close-up of one section of the wall.

I was completely captivated when I saw this writing from hundreds of years ago.  No one has been able to figure out it’s meaning.  Some of the walls had pictures of ships scratched into the stone.  When I see these things, I think about the people and what things they must have felt or thought about.

My darling, Audrey.

Both my sisters and I like to cook, so when we saw there was a shop called The Spice & Tea Exchange, we took the time to drop in.  It’s in a very quaint area of town with dozens of small shops.  They are also online at  The Spice & Tea Exchange, selling a variety of spices, salts, rubs, teas, sugars, and tea supplies.

At a regular city park near our hotel, there was this carousel.  We went there for Audrey but as you can see in the picture, the older ones got in on the fun, too.

Justus reminds me of royalty with that little wave. 🙂

Part III coming soon…

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Trip to Florida – Part I

After a long stint away from Treasuring the Moments due to visits from family and various and sundry happenings, I’m hoping to make an appearance more frequently.

As I write, my family and I are driving down the road  – leaving Florida and heading for Alabama.  Although Florida is known as the “sunshine state”, sunshine and warmth have been in short supply around here.

……..Well I started the above paragraph over a week ago and am just now getting back to writing.  *Smack, smack*  I must do better about posting!

The occasion of our trip to Florida was for my nephew’s wedding.  We decided to make a family trip out of it and spent a few days in St. Augustine as well as Jacksonville.  Along the way, we visited with friends in Louisiana & Alabama.

Following are some pictures of our time in Sarasota, Florida.

The kids could not get enough time swimming whether it was in the hotel’s swimming pool…

or at the Atlantic Ocean which was very cold.   Brrrr!

My two sisters and me.  Do you want to guess who’s oldest?  No, wait.  Forget I said that.  Foorrggeett I said that!  Seriously, it’s getting a little painful these days.  I’m the youngest and people are sometimes not so sure what our birth order is when looking at us.

Audrey being a good sport, but then…

an extra big wave came along. 😦  Poor thing.  She had sand everywhere.  I didn’t completely get it out of her hair for days.

That’s all for today, folks.  Stay tuned for more exciting pictures in the days to come. 😀

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Quick Trip to Boston

I’ve been somewhat distracted from writing lately due to other distractions.  Just this past weekend Russell & I took a quick trip to Boston.  There was a book show that we wanted to check out as a potential source for inventory for our online book business.

Now maybe I can’t say definitively that Boston is not my kind of town since I was only there for about 4 days, but I sure was longing for home.  Give me the wide open spaces, less noise and cleaner air.  The people were quite friendly – friendlier than I think you would find Arizonans but what bothered me the most was the immorality.  Everywhere you looked there were women dressed or should I say undressed to the point of almost being exposed.  I thought things were bad in Arizona but Boston is the worst I’ve ever seen.  The women had no shame. 

We did spend one day walking along the Freedom Trail.

 This is the Granary Burying Ground established in 1660.  The tall obelisk in the middle is where Benjamen Franklin’s parents are buried.  Also buried in this graveyard are James Otis, Samuel Adams, Robert Paine and those who died in the Boston Massacre.


John Hancock’s Grave


Paul Revere’s Grave


See that tiny building at the far end of the street?  That is the Old State House – Boston’s oldest public building.  It was built in 1713 as the seat for the British colonial government.  This is where the Stamp Act and the Writs of Assistance were debated. 


And right here, on the balcony of the same building, the Declaration of Independence was first read to the Bostonians July 18, 1776


I had to take this picture of a father and his two sons riding on unicycles in downtown Boston for our friends in PA. 😉


And finally, Faneuil Hall where our founding fathers met for organized protests against British tyranny, prior to the Revolution.

And that about sums up what we saw of Boston- besides its subways which, by the way,  are the oldest ones in the nation.


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The Final Post on our Ohio Trip – Camp Activities

This is it; the final post chronicling our trip to Ohio.

At this youth camp they have activities for all ages.  During their craft class even Audrey and Justus were able to participate.  This class made wooden paddle wheel boats one day and the next they raced them in a little swimming pool.

I promise.  I did not make Audrey go to this class.  I’m not sure what her problem was but she got over it shortly.  Looks like she’s been having a red popsicle again.

They had a cake decorating class for the girls that were interested and a sewing class and the boys had an opportunity to learn about small engine repair (using lawnmowers).  My boys didn’t do any of those things.  They stayed on the volleyball court the entire week.



Serenity’s dorm had special things going on at night before they went to bed.  This one was a skit that looks like fun.


After camp we went and stayed a few days with a couple that have been dear friends through the years.  It was like a reunion – for 2 other couples, besides my sister and her family,  stayed there as well that were chums of ours before we married.  We had a great 4th of July weekend visiting, eating delicious food, playing volleyball and another game called corn holes (I think that’s what it’s called.) which I had never heard of.

My sister and her family.  Don’t they look great in their nicely coordinating outfits.  She always has her family dressed in like colors.

Unlike her younger sister – (blush, blush)

who also got a snapshot of her family taken that Sunday morning.  We are more like a rainbow family.  🙂


Sunday afternoon we left to make the long trek back to Arizona.  We drove (actually we  did not drive  – Russell drove) for 31 hours straight and then got a hotel that night.  This is the next day and the kids are starting to look pretty happy about the thought of reaching home.


But I left a part of me in Ohio.  My Seth. (who will be staying there to work all summer)


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Somewhere between Oklahoma & Ohio

Russell is made of a different fabric than I.  The longest I’ve driven in one stretch is 3 hours.  Russell can go all night and then some more and that’s exactly what we did.  But even he needs to rest sometimes.  I never know where we’ll end up.  This time it was in a little bitty town that must have a claim on Route 66

although that’s not the road we pulled off on. 

It looked like a fun store whose parking lot became our rest stop for the next 45 minutes.

Nothing was open since it was early enough that most people were still sleeping. 


 A little rest and he’s good to go for another 10 hours.  Amazing man my hubby is.


I thought this was quite a neat idea.  I wonder how well it works.  Maybe the predecessor to the first riding lawn mower? 🙂


Early morning entertainment for those who were not trying to snooze – watching the train and smashing pennies on the tracks. 


Have you ever woke to a turtle staring you in the face?  Some on our trip did.  Wesley’s reaction was the best; he had quite the startled look! 

Does anyone know what kind of turtle this is?  Maybe it’s a tortoise.  I have no idea.  Maybe I should educate myself on the difference.


Devotions were sometimes held in strange places – like the drive-thru of the bank.  (Hey, it was a shady spot and it was Saturday after all.)

Attentive, tired?  How would you describe them?


Maybe tired.  Uh huh.  I’d say they’re completely wiped out.  Is that Russell I see stretched out on the middle table? 

This was our lovely breakfast stop in Illinois.  The way our family travels is to stop for breakfast and eat cereal & fruit.  We go to a park (or a rest area if the other option is not available) where the kids can run around getting rid of pent up energy (and the driver can rest).  This works really well for our family.

Audrey got a little bored one day…

but managed to entertain herself

and me, too.

I’ll finish up our trip next post.  Only a few pictures to go.:)

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