Yuma, AZ

We had a great weekend with Barbara and John, my sister and brother-in-law. Last time we were in Yuma together, we were told we had to try Lute’s Casino. Well, Barbara was very apprehensive to even enter the place, let alone eat there. But we did go in and even enjoyed it. So this time, it was Barbara’s idea to go!! Their specialties are potato tacos and their specialty burger is one which includes a sliced hotdog… very tasty!

Next time we will have to try their other specialty, dog taco… a hot dog on a tortilla.

Barbara tried the Berry Berry Shake

We enjoyed the live music

And almost lost Paul!

Saturday, we went shopping to stay out of the heat, and I bought my outfit for Nate and Chris wedding as well as the decorations for their rehearsal dinner.
Sunday we attended a good Christian church near the park.
The rest of the weekend was pretty uneventful and all about eating! Paul got his fry bread at the senior center. We ate at a 50’s diner with not so good service but good food and a mexican restaurant with good service AND good food! Isn’t that what life is all about??

MMAP Week 3 Payson AZ

We are at the end of our time in Payson! It is sad to leave friends that you have made over the past month, and this group was especially cohesive. It has been a productive, and enjoyable time!

To catch up on the past week, last Saturday Paul spent catching up on maintenance on the rig….

He even installed our new toilet!! You know you are getting old when you get excited about a new toilet!!

Sunday after church we had a potluck dinner at the Kornoff’s home. (They are the couple who live here in Payson.)
We had a great, relaxing time visiting. Monday before work I took the jeep in to town for a new belt, then after work, we went rock hunting. Did not take the camera, but should have. Saw some beautiful scenery as we hunted and found fossils and petrified wood!

Tuesday was an appreciation dinner from the camp, and an opportunity to take pictures while we were all dressed up, instead of pictures in our work clothes!

The ladies finished painting the original part of the house, including the living room, two bedrooms, hall, and bathroom. The master bed and bath did not get the molding painted, but all the walls were painted with two coats! The plan is for all buildings throughout the camp to be painted the same colors, Harvest Brown and Oyster White. The brown looked green with some lighting, other times yellowish or tan

The guys got their 300 sq ft cabin completed, including adding the kitchen, resetting bathroom fixtures, painting, tile, carpeting and molding.

Replacing windows (not on the list for this month) is the only thing left to do to complete the remodel on the cabin!

We finished up the week on Thursday cleaning up the cabins we were working on and getting ready for leaving.
As Paul was loading his tools in the rig, it began to snow!

At the beginning of this job it was snowing, and the very last day it snows…..looks like we need to head for a warmer place!

AZ from the AIR!!

One of the MMAP workers built his own plane and lives here in Payson. He graciously offered to give a ride to anyone interested.
Of course, I like to see EVERYTHING from EVERY angle…so I got a ride Friday morning!!

When we left the airport, we headed northwest, viewing Pine and Strawberry,

saw the Natural Bridge from the air,

followed the Mogollon Rim (since we will not be able to drive it due to the late snow and wet condition)

and of course flew over our camp!

Sorry it is a little blurry…the airplane was leaning. The three white squares on the bottom of the picture are the RV’S, ours being the far left. Just above is the house the ladies worked on and in the forest just above that, a little to the right, is the cabin the guys were renovating. They had a steep hill to climb each day!
This is the part on the trip when he got close to the Mogollon Rim and the GPS Voice warned we were to close, go higher!!

In Payson, the runway, and in foreground, Ponderosa Baptist Church.

What a highlight!! Idid get a little queasy, but did not have to use the plastic baggie!!
One other person took him up on the offer, but the rest were land lubbers. We all had lunch together afterward at the La Sierra Mexican Restaurant.

This group really likes to eat!
After lunch we headed to Pine and Strawberry, seeing the oldest log school house in the state,

and met friends Steve and Gail Wilson, also former Julianites who are now “Zonis”, for dinner. We ate at the Sidewinder Saloon in Pine, an obvious local favorite, even for the local old dog who quietly and slowly went to each table along the wall to see if anyone had anything for him. We had a great time catching up! No picture though…. had to much fun visiting, time slipped by, and then …… okay I forgot!

MMAP End of Week 2, Payson AZ

We are almost to the end of our time here in Payson! Time has gone so fast! The guys are seeing progress with the installation of the cabinets, sink and countertop, toilet and sink in bathroom and beginnings of the installation of the shower.
Paul worked on some behind the walls wiring which is not seen, updating old wiring to Romex, as well as install of four overhead lights plus bathroom and outdoor lighting, and changing of three way switches. He also installed the water heater, installed a door to the water heater closet, helped install the tile,

and sanded molding.
The ladies’ house is also progressing with the painting. The walls are all finished, and we are now priming the molding, a slow, tedious job!!

This past weekend we had some real fun. On Easter Sunday, we attended Ponderosa Baptist Church, and saw an announcement about a 4×4 day trip in the bulletin for the following Saturday. So Paul called about it, and we joined the group on Saturday for the all day outing. We each had our silent prayer: Paul, that there would be at least one guy his age, me, that there would be at least one other lady there. Both were answered. There were five other jeeps each with a couple within 10 years of our age!! I would guess we were in the middle age-wise!

The Indian ruins have recently been explored by geologists and have been opened up and will be closing up shortly, after which the geologists will see what impact visitors have had on the unmanned site.
It was a fabulous ride, going into the Ancha Mountains:

4×4 rock climbing a few hundred feet,

having some Christian fellowship while eating a picnic lunch, and hiking about a mile to see some more Salada Indian cliff dwellings.

Fantastic views from the site!
We would not have known about this site without going with this group!
We thank the Lord for the opportunity to have been fortunate enough to visit ruins!!

And the desert blooms were out and gorgeous!

Sunday we went to Phoenix and visited with my nephew, David and his family. We attended church and had lunch and a great visit with them, getting to know his wife, Anna, and 18 month old daughter, Ilse. On the way back, we were reminded of the days we went from Julian to El Cajon for church, and coming back up the hill!

We ended our second week here with a soup potluck and game night on Thursday night.

Payson, AZ Surrounding areas

Our first full week here is already over. We have accomplished a lot. Paul and the guys are renovating a cabin by adding a kitchen area and redoing the bathroom. The director of the camp wanted the sinks and toilet moved, which involved a lot of extra work demolishing and reinstalling plumbing and electrical, and patching the wall and floor. Changes always take longer than just going in and doing something. So Paul worked mostly on electrical, added ceiling lights, reinstalled the water heater and worked on adding a door to the water heater closet.

We ladies continued to paint in another location, and completed two coats of painting on the walls in the bedrooms, hall and living room plus one coat in each of the two bathrooms. Fortunately, the kitchen and dining room and all of the ceilings were done by MMAP group last month. So next we will start on the wood trim after the second coat in the bathrooms.

Thursday was our 38th wedding anniversary and it was really low key. We are now proud owners of a new toilet for the RV…. can’t beat that for romantic! LOL! We just need the time to install it now! We made a video for fun, but could not get it to download after an hour and a half, so I gave up on it.

But we had our real fun Friday.
We took a dirt road, and according to the GPS, we went in a big circle, even as it tried to get us off of the road at a couple of places!! But the views were fantastic!

We even drove through some snow!

We could not follow the GPS where it wanted to lead us in order to get from the dirt road to a scenic, gravel highway (Yes, it was a numbered highway: 288, the Desert to Tall Pines Scenic Road), so we finally got on the main road, Highway 260, and GPS directed us to the road we wanted. What beautiful, diverse scenery!!

Along the way we found the grave of the first victim of the war in Pleasant Valley in 1887 over sheep herding and cattle rustling (click on the Desert to Tall Pines Scenic Road for the information)

And came across beautiful bright red canyon, with the Dutchwoman Butte as the wall.

Toward the end of the trail, we could see Roosevelt Lake below on the desert floor between the buttes.

The Jeep was pink from the red mud we went through (You do know the gauge of how much fun you have is the amount of mud you acquire!!!) and it matches the Dutchwoman Butte!

At the bottom of the mountains, the Salt River feeds into Roosevelt Lake.

A few miles along the main highway, we saw a sign for Tonto National Monument. (by the way, National Park Week is coming up April 17-25, and all parks are offering free entrance!!) Anyway, thinking it would be a quick stop to see “A” monument, we were surprised to find out it was actually Indian ruins! We got our exercise, and hiked a half mile up to see the Lower Cliff Dwellings of Tonto Basin people.

Fabulous views of where we had come from!

We did not gauge the miles, but we think we went about 200 miles all together and were gone for 10 hours. What a blast!! And, as usual, the pictures do not do the area justice!!

Payson, AZ

We arrived at the Tonto Rim Christian Camp safe and sound late morning on Friday. The rig was sooo dirty after the snow storm, and the weather was nice, so we spent the afternoon cleaning the outside. We could not believe how dirty it was!
On Saturday morning Paul worked on some more minor repairs to the RV, and then we decided to check out the town of Payson. It is larger than I thought it was, but the area reminds us of Julian, with the pines and oaks, but dry. We are about an hour and a half northeast of Phoenix.
We found a city park with a small lake, and lots of people enjoying it! A museum and replica of one of Zane Grey’s homes, where he wrote many of his novels using the area as a backdrop, was also right there.

The original cabin was real close to the location of the camp, about 20 miles out of town. The original house was completely burned during the Dude fire a few years ago. No inside pictures were allowed in either building.

The museum had displays marking the history of the county and the area, and was very informative and interesting.

We had lunch by the lake and decided we had enough time to visit the Tonto Natural Bridge State Park.
The main feature of the park is Tonto Natural Bridge, the world’s largest travertine arch! What an amazing structure!!

View from the top.

It was used by early settlers as a hiding place when raiding Apaches were hunting. An early prospector discovered it in 1877, and he tried to make a go of farming on top of it. Various parties have owned it since, until 1990 when the state of Arizona purchased it. The bridge is 183 ft high, 400 feet long, and 150 feet wide at its widest point.

Pictures do not capture the true size and beauty of this wonder!

Sunday, we went to Easter service at Ponderosa Baptist Church in town, followed by dinner at a local restaurant, Tiny’s, with the rest of the MMAPers. Great food and fellowship!! When we got back, we walked around the camp, and took a trail to see the caves adjacent to the camp. They were fabulous,

and the views of the Mogollon Rim were incredible.

We are excited to start our first day of work here tomorrow, remodeling a kitchen and bath in one of the cabins.