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Sat. Dec. 3 to Fri. Dec. 9- Frisco, Breck, Beaver Creek- Lindsey Vonn, Birds of Prey World Cup, Bob’s surgery

Saturday- We did our usual breakfast, bill paying and budget update this morning. Craig and Terilu picked us up at 10. We all went to Wells Fargo since we had banking to do. Then we went to Dillon to the thrift stores. Craig was looking for a new ski bib. instead, he found a full ski suit for $30. This outfit probably cost $250-350 new. So it was a really good deal. We walked across the parking lot to the other thrift store and he found a ski bib for $5. So he has two nearly new ski outfits. At the second store we picked up some of those basket type paper plate holders. The owner of this second store is trying to empty out the inventory so everything was $5 or under. He just gave us the paper plate holders!

We went to the Columbia store at the outlets and I bought two fleece tops. Then we were off to lunch at Butterhorn, one of our favorite restaurants, in Frisco. We started on the Frisco Walk, where we sampled Wassail in many of the stores. So far our favorite was at the Boatyard. Our second favorite was at the Wine and Cheese store and it had wine in it. We will have to go back to do the rest of the stores, as we were getting on a sugar high! Then we have to vote on the favorite.

At 3PM there was the “Santa’s Dash for Cash”. Here are some pictures!

003-1Note the shorts!

Mrs.Claus and her helper.



Even the dogs got onto the act!


Note the red booties!




Nice of this guy to pose for me!

And then there were the Santa girls!


These gals were having a ‘girl weekend” and were staying at the Frisco Inn. We had run into them when trying the Wassail. They said they were freezing when they walked past.

Finally, here was our freezing group. From the right, Kathy, Brian, Bob, Terilu and Craig. 019-1

Ah, but we were not done! At 4 PM, they were having the lighting of the tree and the Santa race in Breckenridge, so off we all headed to Breck. Here are friends Steve and Frank with Bob just prior to the race.


And off they went….


Here are Steve and Frank on the way back. The race went up the road, then back again. .


According to the TV, there were 150 runner in the Breck race. We were freezing, so we skipped the lighting of the tree and headed back home. It was a busy and fun day!

Sunday- My GSA day. Bob dropped me off at the bus stop where I joined Kathy, Brian, Mitch, John, Rick, Ted and Teresa on the ride to the locker room. I collected my radio and found that I was assigned to Peak 8 for the day. I don’t change to my ski boots until I find out my assignment so that I don’t have to hang around in ski boots if I don’t have too! My first assignment was “Elevation”, the VIP program. I was with John and Harold for this assignment. We requested to do this at 9 AM, so that we could try to catch a family on their way to the Ski School. We were looking for a family with a couple of small kids.

We rode the gondola down to the base, with hot cocoa and chocolate chip cookies. We dropped those off in the gondola hut, and walked over to the south parking lot. We watched the cars arriving, but no families with small children. I moved to the drop off lot. That was a hoot! I had 10 cars stop to ask me where the free parking was located!

We moved to the north lot, and just as we arrived at the entrance, a family of four were walking towards us. When we stopped them, we would have let them continue on, not choosing them since they were regulars from Colorado Springs. But, it turned out to be the 12 y.o.  boy’s birthday! My job was to get the hot cocoa and the basket and the guys carry the gear. Since they were all snowboarders, that was easy. We took them to the beginning of the line, and rode up with them in the gondola, servings them the hot cocoa and  chocolate chip cookies. We escorted them to the Colorado lift line, and bid them farewell.

We went to the ski check to turn in the basket and hot chocolate. So that we did not waste the hot chocolate, we all drank some while giving the report on the family. We had to find out from them, their last name, where they live, how many times they ski at Breck each year, what type of passes they have, and we had to have some sort of quote about what they thought of the program and Breck. So we gave that information to Mike, our Team Leader.

My next assignment was at 11 at the Super Connector hut. I did two runs, and arrived at the hut a little early. There were no lift lines today! We had received 3 inches overnight, and the snow was a little ‘sticky’, but nice skiing. The hut  was very busy, with lots of people asking for directions, especially how to return to Peak 9. A lot of people were disappointed that the top of the mountains was not open. The snow cover is very light, and the resort has been busy making as much snow as they possibly can. We really need a heavy dump of snow! The forecast for today was for 2-4 ‘” during the day and 6 inches this evening.

After hut duty, I went into the Vista House for lunch, where I joined Kathy, Brian, Harold, and Anita for lunch.  After lunch I skied 4 runs, the only real service I performed was assisting a lady who was trying to get her skis on. She had a lot of snow stuck to the bottom of her right boot, and it took the two of us to get it off the boot. We had our afternoon meeting at Vista House. Mike took count and we were on our way. I volunteered to stand at the base until the place cleared out, as Kathy and Brian had duty at the ski check until 4.

On my way down, I noticed something big laying in the snow. So I skied over to it. It turned out to be a helmet, with goggles, a radio, and a kerchief. Looked like it was from a boarder. So I picked it up and skied the rest of the way down to the base. I stopped to lock up my new skis, on my way to the Lost and Found. I never made it! Tom and Brian had both noticed me skiing down with the helmet, and when the boarder showed up, Tom marched him over to me to retrieve his gear. He was polite and thanked me. As I had assumed, he had dropped it while riding up the lift, so he had a really cold trip down. The temp at this point was 11, very chilly, degrees! I stayed at the exit from the snow to wish people good-bye and safe journey! The crowd had thinned out to barely a trickle, so they let us leave early, again.

I met up in the locker room with Kathy and Brian so we rode down in the gondola together. We caught up at the base with Ed (our former banker, who gave us the info on how to become GSA’s last year, he now works somewhere else). We all walked over to the Blue River Bistro for happy hour. Bob was already there, and we were joined by the other Denise, Ted, Teresa, Harold, and another John. We stayed until 7, splitting 2 for 1 appetizers, and half price beers and martini’s. We had eaten our anniversary dinner at the Blue River last year, and the appetizers were as good as the dinners had been. I  prefer wine, but the wine was only half price for a bottle, and I sure did not want to drink that much! I had a Cosmo something or other which was basically  lime and vodka. It tasted pretty bad, but was better tasting the more I drank it! For my second one I ordered a Dreamcycle, which was amaretto, orange liqueur, and cream. It was delicious! All of the other ladies tasted it with me, so I was able to walk, instead of stumble,  out of there. Bob was the designated driver so it was okay.

Monday-  The weather guru’s were wrong again. We received a total of 1”of snow in the last 24 hours.  I was off to the rec center, a little late. After exercising, I went to the uniform shop to drop off my pants to be shortened.  They had put up a note on the door that they are now open from 12:30-5:30, so I had to return later. By the time I arrived back at the motor home, it was 10 AM. I worked on the article for 1.5 hours, we ate lunch and headed back to the uniform shop, arriving at 12:40, where there was a line!

People were trying to get uniforms. Joanne, who is one of the guides for the 50+ could not get anything to fit her. They simply do not have enough uniform pieces. The powers that be, finally decided to take the parking attendants out of our same uniform, and put them back in last years uniforms. So the parking attendants have to turn in this years uniforms, have the pieces washed, and  the shop will be dispensing them to our GSA’s and Guides who do not have uniform pieces yet. Poor Mitch was skiing yesterday with only the windbreaker. He had 5 layers on. I had 4 layers including my windbreaker and jacket since it was so chilly!

We returned to the motor home and took a nap! At 5:15 we picked up Terilu and Craig for the trip to the Breckenridge Brewery for dinner, where we met up with Brian and Kathy. They have tapped the Christmas Ale, so Craig, Brian, Kathy and Bob were anxious to sample the nectar! They agreed that it was very good. Craig had the sampler, which was shared by all the beer drinkers. Terilu and I had apple cider. Beers were half price until 6 PM., so at last call for the happy hour, the beer drinkers ordered their second beers ( other than Craig who was still sampling).  Bob and Kathy had an oatmeal stout which they thought was also very good. We ate dinner and had a nice time talking about RV’ing and being GSA’s. Brian and Craig both have some frozen water pipes, so the guys were discussing how to remedy their situations. Craig is also having an electrical issue. In our site, we have the post for the light which is the site marker. That is where Bob has plugged in our engine block heater. Craig’s site does not have this electrical outlet. So they have been popping their breakers, since they have been running the two heaters, in addition to the block heater. The guys were trying to figure out how to remedy this situation.

We gals were working on  laundry and washing machine issues. Kathy and I both have the same type of washer/dryer, where in Terilu’s motor home, they made alterations and have installed a stacking washer/dryer. She lost a cabinet and a drawer to be able to put in the stacking w/d.  Kathy is having issues with her pipes clogging with lint, so we are thinking that it is because she has not been using fabric softener (liquid). With Terilu’s, newer models, she is able to wash bigger loads. Yeah, I know, boring, but get some RV’ers together, especially full-timers, and we always discuss problems and solutions. Not to mention, places we have visited, parks we have stayed in, and the parts of this beautiful country that we have visited!

When we dropped off Craig and Terilu, she returned my boot carrier, as she was using it as a model to make some for her and Craig. She also gave us their coffee percolator. When we were at Bed, Bath and Beyond on Saturday, we were looking for one. We had purchased, at Walmart, a camping one, the only one we could find,  prior to our boon-docking at the Balloon Fiesta. It did not have a glass top, so we could not tell when the coffee was  done. So we have been looking in thrift stores and on E-bay to buy a 12 cup one. They only sell electric ones in the stores, but you can order the old fashioned kind over the internet through the BBB web site. Terilu has a 12 cup, but wants a 4-6 cup. So she gave us their 12 cup, and I ordered a 4- 6 cup for her. I  joined their email list and rec’d a 20% discount, so this worked well for us! I love it when a plan comes together!

Tuesday-  Well, – 11 this morning with a wind chill of –30. Do I need to tell you we skipped going to the Breck 50+ skiing! We have cold water, but no hot water again. .The light bulb under the front of the motor home could not keep up with the cold. So Bob put a heater under the front and we had hot water fairly rapidly. I just heated up a wet wash cloth in microwave to wash my face!

We dropped off another lapghan at the UPS store. We found out it was less expensive to mail the lapghan from the UPS store, next to City Market in Breck, then to run to Frisco to the Post Office. This one went to the VA hospital in Salt Lake City. 001

Terilu and Craig came over. Terilu took my Columbia black jacket and added a pocket for me. Thank you Terilu! Craig and Bob discussed how they are going to re-route the air intake duct in the back of the motor home, over the bed. This will give us more storage. They have already done ours, and it will add a cabinet, so that when we put in a stacking washer dryer we will not lose the space. While they were doing that I noticed a drop of water land on the quilt. They guys decided that it was condensation, as it was still too cold outside for it to be ice/snow melt. So Bob is going to work on seeing how he can put insulation in that area.

After lunch we drove up to Frisco to the Senior Center for Mahjongg. We had a nice time playing. There were 3 tables today. I won a fee and Craig won a few. We renewed our membership and they joined. We also signed up for dinner on Monday evening.

It was zero when we went to bed!

Wednesday- We were up early and dressed warmly. It was –1 degree. We both put on long underwear, and our ski pants. We put on layers, heavy jackets, and warmest boots. We stuffed our pockets with hand and toe warmers, mittens, gloves, hats and  neck gaters. Craig and Terilu picked us up at 8:30 and we headed west on I-70, going to Beaver Creek for the World Cup Women’s Super G to cheer Lindsey Vonn on to victory.. The race was supposed to be in Val d’isere France, but they do not have snow, so the race was moved to Colorado. This was lucky for us, since the next time that the World Cup is in the area is in 2015. Beaver Creek has this down to a science! They sent us to the “Bear” parking lot. We took a bus up to the base lodge, then they sent us on another bus to the middle of the mountain. The Birds of Prey stadium is at the base of the race course. We had to hike up the hill to the stadium. We had excellent seats where we could see the top of the mountain as well as the end of the race. We could not see the middle of the race course, which is relatively flat, but we could see  it on the Jumbotron.  We watched ski history being made, as this is the first time that the ladies have raced on the Birds of Prey ski slope.

The race started (at 10:30) with Faith Hill singing the Star Spangle Banner. We think it was professionally done in a studio, so she might have just sung along, but we could not see her, but they announced that she was there. There were 54 racers. Lindsey Vonn was #17, and obviously the most popular. There were 9 American racers. Lindsey left them all in the dust! Here was her score. Once the world winners finished, the rest of the skiers were anti-climatic, it was obvious that Lindsey had won, so we just had to sit through the rest of the skiers. Julie Mancuso came in 9th, I think. She did pick up points in the World Cup tour. The sun was out, so we started stripping off layers of clothes while sitting in the stands. We were glad that we had put on sunscreen! This was a great experience, which we were all glad that we had taken the effort to go to see!

We left the stadium, rode the buses down, and drove over to Vail, where we had lunch at the “Tavern on the Square”. I had the awesome French Onion Soup, that I had last year. Bob had the penne pasta, Craig and Terilu both had the soup and calamari. Lunch was good, but expensive. We headed back to Breck. I had rec’d a call from the Breck gal( Rockett) who is shortening my pants, so we ran up to the Uniform shop to pick them  up, but they were closed today. We picked up our skis and boots, for tomorrow at Keystone. Bob also had several phone calls about his surgery on Friday.

At 6:30 we met up with Brian, Kathy, Craig and Terrilu to play Mexican Train in the Activity Center.

Thursday- We were off at 8 AM to Keystone to ski with the 50+ . It was snowing, foggy, and cold, but great skiing. We had a lot of fun. Kathy and I skied with the Blue Cruisers and Bob, Craig and Brian skied with the Blue Blazers. This was Kathy and Brian’s first time at Keystone in over 10 years. We left at lunch time, ran to Breck to drop off our skis and boots, plus picked up Terilu who was taking a lesson.

We ran back to the motor home, walked the dogs, and ran over to the Activity Center to take showers before going to the Loosey Goosey Wine and Cheese. Kathy and Brian had not been before and were impressed with how many people were there. Loosey Goosey is not advertised, this is just a local happening! It is by invitation only.

After the wine and cheese, we headed to Frisco to taste some more Wassail. We wanted to check at Rivers, a clothing store which has won the contest for the last  three years. We decided that we liked The Boatyard the best, so we voted for them.

We returned to the motor home and went in to check the mail. When Bob walks the dogs, he takes them to the front office to visit the gals there. They give the dogs milkbones. Yetti goes there also. The gals have put up Christmas stockings for all of the dogs who visit them regularly. The dogs have the routine down. When heading that direction, they automatically make the turn to go to the office. They know to head right to the side of the desk and that they have to sit to receive their treat. Nikki ( one of the gals who works the desk) said that Yetti dragged Frank through the door to get his treat earlier today!

Friday- We were up by 7. Bob had to eat and drink before 8, but we decided in case they ran early that he should complete his eating and drinking before 7:30. We cleaned up the motor home, packed  a small suitcase, and played with the dogs. I did a load of laundry. Bob walked the dogs, just before we left at 11 AM.

We drove down to Denver, stopped at the storage unit, and went to run through the carwash. The hospital called and asked if we could get there early as the MD was running ahead of schedule. So we hustled and arrived over an hour earlier than planned.

We were very impressed with Presbyterian St. Lukes Hospital.  Of course I had already checked it out with a nurse that I know who works in the area. We started with free valet parking. They pushed us through the admission paperwork, then into the pre-op room. Bob changed clothes, had blood drawn, and an EKG and they took us upstairs to the surgical area. He saw the Anesthesiologist and the Surgeon, followed by the surgical nurse. Then he was off into surgery. I went to the waiting room, and was met by Mary, the volunteer, who wrote down who I was, who I was waiting for, and what I was wearing. I had chosen to sit in the free WiFi area so I could use the Ipad. My phone would not work!  I had been given a privacy number, and they have a board behind the volunteer desk that tell you when the person starts surgery, when they are finished, when they go to the recovery room, all by changing colors after the person’s privacy number.  The Surgeon showed up to tell me all was well,  and give me Bob’s prescriptions. The recovery room nurse, who had followed the surgeon,  took me to the hospital entrance and sent me across to the medical building to a  small Walgreens to pick up the prescriptions. By the time I arrived back, Bob was on his way to the PACU, where I met up with him. He changed clothes, had the IV taken out, and I went to retrieve the car. I picked him up at the same door I had been using and we were on our way. Fortunately he had ‘twilight’ so he was just a little ‘loopy’. He said he woke up during the surgery, said to the doc’s, “how long was I under” and out he went again!

Of course, once we left the hospital,  the GPS witch took us all around Denver, RECALCULATING, until she found Rt. 6, which took us to the Days Inn across from Colorado Mills Mall. We dropped off our stuff, and since Bob was starving we went to Romano’s Macaroni Grill, just down the street,  for dinner.  Only the second time we have been to one, and it was pretty good!

We went back to the motel and both fell asleep watching a Christmas movie. Before we actually went to bed, I had to secure Bob’s drain and re-enforce the dressing. The PACU nurse had started  to show me how to change the drain, and I had already taped it to Bob’s shirt, like I would a Foley catheter to a leg. Her first clue that I was a nurse!  I had already figured out the drain, since it is like a tube to draw blood, so it is pretty easy to change. I have to change it two times a day until Wednesday when we return to the MD office to have it removed and they may remove the sutures at that time. Fortunately, the dressing comes off tomorrow and he will be able to shower starting tomorrow evening. .

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