The years is drawing to a close, and it’s time to wrap it up. I mean, how much more can happen between now and the New Year? So here’s a summation and the outlook for 2016.
Five years ago the builder completed our new home in San Antonio, leaving installed two of the smallest live oak trees out back. Most of the rest was grass. I looked at the trees back then and thought, “That’s cute.”
Not cute anymore. These buggers have grown. The sunlit back yard was starting to resemble the Big Thicket. It was becoming obvious the days of the grass were numbered. I thought, “Why wait?”
Here’s how the trees looked after three years. Even then they were not much of a threat. Our house is the one inside the black rectangle.
By early 2015 it was becoming obvious something had to go. That something was the grass.
2014 saw the beginnings of our grass elimination program. It started with seven cubic yards of grass-begone.
Yes, the side yard, as well.
This year the project resumed with a vengeance. Another seven cubic yards arrived on my driveway. Here is a pictorial of the progression from 2013 to 2015.
I documented the project with a series of comical video clips. Here they are in more or less chronological order:
And that was the end of the grass. In the mean time, Barbara was making drapes.
She was also busy winding yarn.
Came cooler weather, and it was time to take vacation. We hitched up the Camry and headed out Interstate 10 from San Antonio.
Out of Texas for the first time, Barbara’s new Camry posed for the traditional photo at Texas Canyon in Arizona.
Out to Tucson first and a visit to the Mission San Xavier del Bac. Restoration work is now complete, and it’s living up to its name, the White Dove of the Desert.
It’s always fun to stop and sight see in Tubac.
And, there were sights to see on the way to Sedona.
Driving through the Navajo Nation, we stopped at a Conoco station and noted that Dottie Sloan had for some reason worn out her welcome.
Our stay in Sedona was a week of chilling out at Los Abrigados Resort.
Lounging around at Tlaquepaque next door makes for a relaxing evening.
Not so relaxing, a side trip to Grand Canyon.
Next, five days at Zion National Park.
Then it was time to head back to San Antonio. On the way, a stop at Monument Valley. We wimped out and lounged around the visitors center, where I took some videos.
Even shots from the highway are spectacular.
Canyon de Chelley was on the way back to New Mexico.
It was the day John turned 75.
Something we always wanted to see again was the Very Large Array, outside of Socorro, New Mexico. It’s always an impressive sight, your tax money doing serious science.
Vacation over, we enjoyed time with friends in San Antonio. In December it was the Tamales Festival at Pearl Brewery.
Coming up next, Christmas with the in-laws and a visit with my daughter and grandson.
Winding down the year, we are preparing to take some time off in January. This retirement is hard work. We head out on New Year’s Eve for Spain and will start 2016 in Madrid. Then it’s on to Barcelona, Tarragona, Seville, Malaga, and parts in between, with maybe a stop in Ronda.
It’s the day before Christmas 2015, and there is still some left in the year. Come back later to see any additions.
Photos to follow.