Archives for April 2012

Thursday, April 19, 2012 – Observer Day at the Dolphin

Dolphin Lobby
Quickly packed in the morning, dressed in our business clothes, and headed out to the Dolphin Hotel at Disney for our day of observations. Joined out friends/hosts for lunch, then spent the afternoon observing a panel, to whom we offered a few tidbits of advice before heading up to our room to change for dinner. Hubby’s finger, the one that the dog had nipped the day before, suddenly began to swell up unexpectedly, getting red and hot and twice the normal size. We continued our evening, enjoying a very nice dinner at the catered dinner, including a wonderful presentation by a young woman touting the virtues of community college, before heading back to the room. By then, Hubby was having severe chills, and the swelling in his finger had increased even worse. He took a painkiller before going to bed, but it was so swollen, it hurt to the touch, and I was getting pretty worried. Decided to see what happened by morning before deciding what to do next.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012 – Move to Orlando

Jade Meadows backyard

Finished packing in the morning, then headed out via the back route to Orlando, fighting with my Verizon Navigator all the way, as she kept trying to get me back to I-95 as if there was no Beeline Highway or 441. Very frustrating. Arrived at Jade Meadows Stables in Kissimmee, had quite a bit of trouble getting into the place, with very low hanging branches from their beautiful live oaks, but it did make it difficult. No one warned us about the stable dog Benny, who evidently doesn’t like strangers much, and while I noticed his curled lip, Hubby got distracted at the same moment he was reaching down to pet the dog, who promptly nipped his fingers, breaking the skin a bit on his fingers. Nothing serious, apparently, so we continued setting up the RV and getting the horses settled. Satellite dish was so hopeless we didn’t even try, and we managed to get settled in for a relaxing evening, the horses safely stored away in the round pen next to us.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012 – And More Cleaning and Work

More time on the computer, more time doing spring cleaning, but mostly spent the day getting ready to leave tomorrow. After three months here (at least, our STUFF was here), it’s time to move on. We had originally planned to stay until the end of the month and to commute to two jobs in central Florida, but the second job moved up to Jacksonville, so it didn’t make sense to commute that far, so we decided to leave now. Finalized the logistics of a stable so that we could spend the night with our hosts in Orlando at the Dolphin Hotel in Disney on Thursday. Packed everything we could in preparation for our move tomorrow.

Monday, April 16, 2012 – More Cleaning

Today I tackled the drawers in the van, which is laid out like a walk-in closet with hanging clothes and drawers. Hubby and I gathered everything that didn’t fit any more (because of our weight loss since last year, over 35 pounds each!), including some really nice suits of his that were hardly worn, and drove them down to the North Shore Animal League Thrift Store in Jupiter to donate them to their no-kill animal shelter. We also donated the rest of our floor panels (they came in boxes of 6, one box we only used one, naturally), and some other items we got tired of carrying around with us and weren’t likely to ever use again. Long hot day, but well worth it by the time we got done, lots more room and access to the “extra” closet now!

Sunday, April 15, 2012 – Last Ride Day with Brother

Brother discovers “You Are Here” on Hungryland kiosk
Took most of the day to work on logistics for the week, until my brother was finally ready to go for his last ride (we left at 3:00!), this time heading out the old Indiantown grade (after crossing the canal) to the west toward Pratt Whitney road. Mostly walking again… Sigh… After reaching the road, we turned around and headed back, passing a couple walking their little dog on the trail. About halfway back, the horses started to go crazy, snorting and stomping. We assumed it was pigs, being that it was so late in the day and they would likely be coming out then. Then I suddenly noticed an animal about 100 feet ahead of us. At first I thought it was a dog, as it was about the size of Marina, our lab mix (70 pounds), and it, too, was a gold color. Then it started to move across the road, and it moved like a cat. I quickly pointed it out to my brother, and he got a good look, too, before it went into the woods on the other side of the road. We both agreed it had to be a Florida panther, a highly endangered animal that only has an estimated 100-160 members, though according to a map I saw on Wikipedia as to their range, not as far east as we saw this one. We rode back to the couple with the dog to let them know they might want to keep an eye on their dog so it didn’t become cat food, then headed back again, still fighting with the horses, who were not happy we were going back toward where the cat was! We finally passed the area and they eventually settled down. Later we saw some cyclists and warned them about the cat, too, and we had a discussion about a sighting that they had had some time ago, but when they called it in, the “authorities” tried to convince them it had to be a bobcat, not a panther (we all knew the difference) but they couldn’t be persuaded. I decided not to report it, as I believe the animals are better off without our intervention most of the time anyway. It was pretty cool though! Got back late (not surprising considering when we started), got the horses settled in, chatted with my brother for a bit over a beer, then settled in for dinner and a quiet evening.

Friday, April 13, 2012 – Tax Prep Day

Slept fairly late, but couldn’t get it off my mind that today was Tax Day, so before long I was up and gathering all the stuff I needed to complete the task. In previous years, I just printed up a report with all the expenses and income and filled in the blanks with Turbo Tax, but last year I finally upgraded my antique bookkeeping program (it wasn’t even Y2K ready, would you believe!) with Quicken, so I had high hopes that it would be easier. Turned out it did a pretty good job, I just had to make some corrections to input that I had entered (particularly from the beginning of the year when I was first getting used to the program), and before long I was importing the info to Turbo Tax. One thing I have to say about Quicken that I love, it downloads most of my accounts directly so I don’t have to input everything by hand, which used to take me HOURS AND HOURS with my previous program. Now I just review and correct anything, and that takes almost no time at all. It only took all day because I was being extra cautious about being as accurate as before when I did it by hand, which ended up taking more time to double and triple check. Happy with the outcome though!

Saturday, April 14, 2012 – Tax Completion and Chore Day

Spent the morning finishing up and double checking everything on my taxes, then filed it electronically, first time I’ve done that (there was always something that stopped me before, some particular that needed to be done by printing it, but not this time!) Spent the rest of the day on chores and more spring cleaning. This WILL GET DONE before we leave!

Thursday, April 12, 2012 – Work Day and Flight Back

Early morning, as we had scheduled another individual coaching session with a client, worked until almost 3:00, then headed out to the airport for our flight home. No first class this time, but we weren’t too far back from the front, which helps. We were out and headed back home again in no time, arriving in the dark again. Again greeted the kids who were jumping for joy, with promises that this will be the last time they’ll be left for a while (well, as much as possible, but we’ve been so busy with work these days!) Really cutting into our riding time : -) Too tired to even bring the bags in, a quick show then off to bed.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012 – Work Day

Day Two of our workshop, not so much time on our feet, Hubby doing most of the work today. Good group, all seemed to be happy with the outcome. Had dinner with our friend Steve (who lives and works at Andrews AFB), who drove over and joined us at the hotel. A pleasant evening as always, broke up around 9:00, off to bed!

Tuesday, April 10, 2012 – Work Day

Day One of our workshop, eight hours on my feet talking, late dinner, crash.