Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Brrr... Lots going on here in Frozen South Texas

Roger here.....   Look!  Our new puppy has bright blue eyes!  Not really.  They are actually brown and remind us of Jasper's eyes.  Stupid camera.

No bragging today about the warm weather in South Texas.  It has been below freezing all day and is supposed to hit a record low of 22 degrees tonight.  So happy to be here during a new record :-(     It might even snow.  If it does, I'm makin' a snowman right next to the palm tree.

We spent the morning disconnecting the RV water hookups (that could freeze),  insulating the RV water pipes with heat tape, draining the water hoses, and covering the rose bushes with sheets.  Brings back memories of late frosts in Indiana.  Amazingly, the life-long local residents aren't all that upset about the cold weather.  They view it as an opportunity to wear a sweater :-)  

Not happy about dealing with cold weather down here, but it is supposed to be back in the 70s by the weekend, and we know how lucky we are not to be in the middle of a blizzard or a freezing rain storm.  (By the way, the local Texas community college cancelled classes today due to the "winter weather"  -- amazing how perspective influences reality).  

In the middle of our cold weather preparations, Dianne received a phone call from Lori, the co-owner -- along with her husband, Mike -- of Rhodes Enterprises.  Mike and Lori are the developers of our park, Retama Village, Bentsen Palm Village RV Park, Tanglewood (a neighborhood of family homes), and the hundreds of ecologically-friendly acres that surround us.  She wanted to visit us TODAY.  Yikes! 

 Our property is a mess due to the construction.  We have boxes everywhere inside and under the coach - our sinks, our faucets, our air conditioner, our paint, our water softener, our convection-microwave.  The outside is covered with snipped off wiring, wall-board dust, and dried mortar.  And now the developer is coming for a visit.  Dianne and I went into that typical cleaning obsession that we have faced in the past with an unexpected visit.  I tackled the outside.  Dianne tackled the inside.  Sweeping, dusting, neatening, etc. etc. etc.  

It was all worth it.  Lori was such a friendly, unassuming lady.  She is an ecologist and a master gardener.  No wonder we love this place.  She promotes native Texas landscaping that attracts birds, wildlife and butterflies.  She personally designs the landscaping at each site to encourage birds and butterflies.  As a former science teacher, how could I not like that?  She brought us a gift collection of amazing nature books that included:  Nature Exposed, Discovering South Texas Wildlife, The Texas Bug Book, and Native Texas Plants.  After the visit, she explained the landscaping on our site and the birds and butterflies our plants would attract.  She also justified the old garden roses that are prevalent in the park (and our yard) by explaining how antique roses were introduced to "the valley" by a group who visited old cemeteries, home sites, and gardens throughout Texas and took cuttings of the antique varieties.  These were then propagated and now are available for planting today throughout Texas.

How many neighborhoods have the co-owners conduct three-hour nature tours (Mike - last year) and then bring coffee table books (Lori - today) that epitomize their vision?  With our interests, we certainly landed in the right place :-)  

The rest of the blog (except for the pet picture) shows the progress that Raul, Freddy, Angel, Juan, Luis, and other have made on our Texas Coach House.  
We love our curved tray ceiling with the (fake) copper ceiling.  It still has the plastic covering on it, so it will look even better when that's removed.  Can't wait to see it with the ceiling fan and lighting installed.

Dianne and I spent a lot of quality time at Home Depot, where we picked out the floor tile that Juan and his son Angel installed today.   We really like the entry threshold area with its chip-stone border.  We also put a strip of chip-stone to separate the main room from the bathroom.  We really like the way that it blends with the wall color.

The whippet picture of the day is entitled "Three Dog Night" after one of my favorite bands.  -- 
Oh, I guess it is really not three dogs (one of them is a very fat cat).  Dianne is loving the love.  


Whippet Lover said...

I love how the coach house is shaping up, it looks great! Also congratulations on your new family member. It appears to be going well.

Whippet Lover said...

The coach house is looking great! Also congratulations on the new addition to your family. It appears to be going well.

Travelwithwhippets said...

I have to take back the comment about not having to worry about freezing rain. We woke up this morning to find everything covered with ice and the expressway closed. Uggh!