Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Family, Friends and Fun

We feel as if we've been swept up in a whirlwind for the last few days. Or weeks. These days are going by quickly. We know all too soon we'll be talking about how much fun we had when our friends and family came together in Tucson.

Sunday afternoon the 5 of us, Jim, Ann & Bob, Berta and I piled into Ann & Bob's Saturn Vue and made the drive up to Casa Grande to meet our nieces and their families for Linner at Cracker Barrel. We had a good time getting caught up on the news of their lives. Our nieces have their own famlies and we got to see two of the kids who, of course, grow like weeds.

Before we left for Casa Grande, we took a walk in the desert. Here are Berta, Ann and me.

Monday, JoAnn & I drove across Tucson to pick up Froggi Donna of From the Lily Pad at Tra-Tel RV Park. Donna is a solo fulltimer who I had the honor to meet last fall when we were both in the same general area of Texas. JoAnn had some leftovers from their dinner with Rick and Tinka of R-V There Yet. I had some leftovers as well, so we invited my family and we all got together for a leftovers potluck in our new coach. Nine of us fit pretty comfortably and we had a fine time visiting. After lunch, Doug conned Donna into helping him solve a computer problem, so off they went across the golf course.

Bob, Donna and JoAnn at lunch.

Then, in the evening, Jim and I went next door to play a card game called Jubilinski. For Jenny, here is the general outline of the game. Players start with 3 dimes each. Three cards are dealt to each player. One card is turned up on the discard pile and the remaining cards make up the draw pile. Play moves to the left with each person either picking up the top card from the discard pile, or drawing a card from the draw pile. They must discard one card. The object is to have the highest score, with 31 being the highest, or "Jubilinski". The cards must be in the same suit in order to count in the score. If a player believes they have enough points in their hand to beat at least one other player, they can knock instead of taking their turn. Once a player knocks, the rest of the players get one more turn and all players lay down their hand. The person with the lowest score must put a dime into the kitty. A player can stay in the game until their dimes are gone. After their last dime has been paid to the kitty, the player goes on their "honor" and can continue to play until they lose a hand, then they're out. Of course, the last person with money, or "honor", is the winner and takes the kitty. If a player gets 31 points, they can lay their hand down right then with the declaration of "Jubilinski". All other players must then pay a dime to the kitty. If another player has knocked, they must pay 2 dimes. If a player knocks and then has the lowest hand, they must pay 2 dimes. I know there are lots of variations and rules to this game; this is the way my family has played.

This game has been a long-time family favorite, at times we've had as many as 18 people playing at once! When my grandmother was still living, we typically were at her large house for holiday get-togethers. When the dishes were done, we gathered around the table for a couple of hot games. She had a rule that spouses were not allowed to sit next to each other, for fear of feeding cards to each other! Last night, we played several games, with Jim winning 2, Ann 1 and I actually took one game. Berta and Bob were the losers for the night.

Today, we got up and out early for a day trip to Tubac. Friends of Berta's live in Green Valley, so she arranged for them to meet us for lunch. We got there with plenty of time to browse around in the shops. Here's Ann in one of the shops.
So many pretty things, no place to put them...

Berta, looking for the perfect gift for someone.
A sreet in Tubac

We enjoyed a good lunch and headed back to Diamond J and our little home on wheels to rest.

Doug & JoAnn are leaving tomorrow, so we visited with them for a little while after we got back.

From the account of all the adventures going on, it would seem we're not making much progress getting settled in to the Phaeton. That's true, although I have spent a little time arranging things, at least when I find them. We're still trying to figure out if we have our new HD-DVR satellite receiver connected correctly. I can see the picture is very sharp, but I am not yet convinced we have true HD. I'm also hearing a little buzz coming from one of the speakers, and I don't think I should. But all in good time, we'll work it all out.

It's still a great life!

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