wrapping up may, finally

by grace on July 1, 2020

a bunch of random images at the end of may…first, Riley and Les Paul trying to relax on the screened porch on May 24th.

May 25th, Memorial Day, Kevin relaxed down at the water for a brief time after doing some herculean effort, i’m sure.

There was quite a parade of goslings and geese that day.

a short video of them.

hmm, not sure where mom and i were walkingh on this day. it looks like there’s a crowd of cars back there, so maybe it wasn’t over at the university. plus since we had masks on it must have been a place where there were other people.

beautiful peonies from the yard…i don’t like to cut them because they don’t last long but on the other hand when they’re out in the yard they’re not getting seen as much.

power-washing the deck on may 28th. it seemed extra dirty this year for some reason.

An Historic occation on Friday May 29th – amy and jim canoeing! I had to run down to the dock to capture it.

They’re quite excellent at the canoeing!

I jogged down the road on saturday the 30th and then cut through the field by the university. this is supposed to be a path across a pond but it was kind of treacherous for me. luckily i did not fall. I’ve been back there since then and it’s still not fixed. I hope they get on that soon.

A great photo to end up the month – mom, kevin and i had a bonfire down at the water. mom ate dinner and kevin smoked a cigar and a good time was had by all.

so then…plenty of stuff happened in june and i’m going to get all caught up, i just know it. it’s supposed to be really hot in the next few days so maybe i’ll spend time sitting around working on that.

ok then,

mrs. july first hughes.


fresh air!

by grace on June 21, 2020

whew, i was starting to worry that maybe i wouldn’t write on here anymore. i have so many hopes of getting things done every day and then somehow the days continue to slip away…

i really wanted to start a journal at the start of the coronavirus but i haven’t even managed to do that. i mean, COME ON.

i now have such a huge backlog of photos and stories about may that i’ll be lucky to get them posted before the end of the year. i’ll have to be much more draconian about the choosing process.

but here’s what we did last weekend, saturday and sunday June 13th and 14th.

Last year we got riprap for the shoreline which has been eroding for a very long time. but the chief riprap guy at the power company came out and told us we needed to start with little stones, so we got two barges of that last year. it kind of filled spaces but also i think it was a little bit of a ripoff because a lot of it washed away.

of course, we were supposed to get bigger stones to put over the little ones but we ran out of summer last summer.

so this year kevin called and asked for a bargeful of big stones. instead of the regular size riprap that everybody else has around the lake (except for the places where people have insanely expensive seawalls), they delivered a barge of the hugest stones i’d ever seen. how did i not take a picture of the gigantic stones?

trust me, they were flinstones-sized. Glenn came over and helped kevin throw the boulders onto the shore and they had to break some of them in two because two people couldn’t budge them. kevin broke four sledgehammers in the process.

They had a week to finish the project but they wrapped it up very quickly, and kevin ordered another barge. This one arrived last Thursday and had regular-sized stones. Kevin started throwing them on friday, and i told him i’d help him saturday morning.

Luckily the weather had been pretty cool and delightful for the past few days, unlike the sweltering heat when kevin and glenn had to toss boulders.

Kevin started at about 7:30 on saturday morning and i joined him at nine. We took a break for about an hour because we had to play a very important group competition in this video game we play called june’s journey. very important break.

we got back to it, and in addition to throwing the rocks, we also sawed down some of the branches on the huge oak tree that’s leaning way down into the water and will fall in someday.

But maybe it won’t fall in while we’re living here, because we cut off so many branches. having the barge docked under the tree was great. I started off using the pole saw which is just what it sounds like, a saw on a long extendable pole. i managed to cut a couple of the branches but then the saw had to be extended so far that i couldn’t do any more.

kevin kept up the job and we soon had a big pile of branches to clear off the barge.

when we finished we then had to move the barge over to another spot. now that i think about it, why did we have to move it again? kevin is really good at moving the barge, anyway. i told him it reminded me of tom sawyer, or was it huckleberry finn who navigated down the mississippi? I had to push against the shore with a big pole and kevin pulled on one of the ropes.

at some point mom came over, pitching in an throwing rocks, and then she took our pictures as we moved the barge.

kevin on the little dock as i tied one of the big ropes.

me, hard at work.

after that we started dragging the big branches up through the yard to the circle in front where all the neighbors pile branches.

amy took this photo of mom as she dragged a branch. she’s a very energetic 84 year-old.

I was so worn out after all that work on saturday that i did little on sunday. kevin, however, wasn’t done and continued on.

more about that soon.

ok then,

grace looking at the rapidly-approaching end of june.


boat launch!

by grace on May 11, 2020

here’s one final thing to share, our boat launch on April 24th.

first, here’s the fancy new cover that kevin installed. Because the top pole of the roof snapped in two when we pulled the boat under our big pine tree out front, we had to get a whole new roof. The replacement piece, plus an absurd amount of shipping costs, would have cost almost as much as the fancy new cover.

it took kevin about a week to install the new one because there was all kinds of wiring and many issues with doing it. but it’s totally cool, automatically lifting and lowering with a switch that kevin mounted on the console, plus there’s an additional little remote to raise and lower it.

here’s the video of how it works.

Shortly after that we drove the boat over to the boat launch.

kevin started backing into the water and i shot this video, but notice the object right in the middle of the water.

Uh oh! Luckily i saw this giant rock in the water…

Kevin pulled the truck forward and then managed to back up again really close to the dock and avoiding the giant rock. He thinks somebody must have put the giant rock in the water but how would they have lifted it? was somebody attempting sabotage? hopefully not, and hopefully it is gone now.

Mom and i were happy to be out on the lake.


When we got back to the dock, Kevin joined us for a nice ride on the lake. a good time was had by all!

ok then,



Once more to Pass-A-Grille Beach

by grace on March 29, 2020

Real-time life update: Yesterday it got up to 71 degrees and kevin and i took a little walk through the fields which which had lots of standing water. it was great to get outside.

After that i decided i needed to transplant a few tulips which had somehow come up in the front. i though i’d transplanted them all last year but these were extras. I managed to dig up about eight or ten and then managed to plant them in the fenced yard, but that was way too much exercise for yesterday. hopefully at least a couple of them will survive.

This morning it’s not as warm and crazy-windy outside but the sun is shining, which is great. Kevin brought Lovey into the screened porch and I hope this is the start of her new life with us inside.

But back to Florida – this was our last full day there and of course my Number One desire was to go to the beach.

First, this black goose was swimming around in the river when i got up in the morning.

I went for a good run and in the background maybe you can see the river behind this yard.

I love that festive metalwork above that door and haven’t seen anything like it before.

yay, another warm-weather run completed!

We got to Pass-A-Grille by 2:00 and didn’t find any parking along the beach, so we ended up on the gulf side. The only hitch is that I had to download the parking app and then add money to it on the app. It took a while to do it and then of course i had to worry that maybe it didn’t really work; there was nothing to indicate that the meter was running. So i asked a woman walking by and she thought we’d be fine.

We took the 5-minute walk over to the beach and it was fun to walk past the cute little houses on the block.

A nice guy threw in a free umbrella with our lounge-chair rental because he didn’t think we’d be there long. It was a very windy day but of course we were going to be there for the duration. Last day at the beach!

I got mom to take a walk with me, and here’s a view back to our spot on the beach and the outdoor cafe Paradise Grille behind it.

Ok, we saw this guy doing something like windsurfing but that’s not what it was. In windsurfing the sail is attached to the board, and this guy was holding onto a rope which was attached to the sail.

It’s also not called parasailing or paragliding. I spent at least an entire minute just now looking it up on wikipedia but I couldn’t find what it’s called. Here you can sort of see the guy way out there.

This guy is not really windsurfing either, as best as i can tell, because he’s holding the sail up above him. that has to be really difficult especially because it was so very windy that day.

yay for mom for walking! that’s the Don Cesar way down the empty beach.

My favorite beach bird scurrying all around and about.

I thought it funny that these gulls were able to sleep in the surf.

I have more photos from that day, but that’s enough for now, i don’t want you to get overwhelmed by all the photos…

ok then,

mrs. hughes, staying at home.


Another beach!

March 25, 2020

Life update – not as much coughing, plus the sun might actually come out today which would be fantastic. Back in Florida, before everything shut down: Sunday Feb. 23rd was warm and wonderful and i went for a good run. Here’s me in front of the door to our rental house. Today we were headed […]

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Back to the beach!

March 14, 2020

Wed. afternoon, Feb. 19th, we made it to the beach a half-hour earlier than the day before, at about ten til five. More time to relax/walk on the beach before the sun set. more ibis. Ibis plus a gull! Today I brought a big ziploc bag for picking up shells, plus another bag to double-bag. […]

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the first part of our first full day in florida…

March 6, 2020

…and it was a very full day, indeed. i’ve broken it up into two parts so you won’t be burdened with trying to read/watch all of it at once. the day started out with a pretty good run. because i’d gotten to sleep pretty late the night before i didn’t start my jog until about […]

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sunny florida!

March 1, 2020

Finally i have time to sit down and post a few of the photos from our trip to sunny florida. Mom and i flew on southwest out of st. louis on sunday feb. 16th and it was a good flight, not like when we flew to NYC in december and had to hang around in […]

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a big shindig

February 20, 2020

On saturday February 8th, we went to the Ballet Gala fundraiser. I think the funnest part was getting ready, as usually seems to be the case. I looked for a 20’s headdress and found that I had this tiara… …and also this one. I wonder why I have 2 tiaras, and I wonder when I […]

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our last night in NYC

January 15, 2020

Friday night, dec. 13th, Mom and i had spent the afternoon at the Whitney Museum and started to make our back uptown. it was relatively warm and rainy, and we started walking towards a bus stop. we found one, and then finally a bus pulled up…but then it just sat there for a while. and […]

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