|Another reminder that the things that matter are just fine. Christie and Emily expecting our next two grandbabies in December and October.|
|Love the red dirt of southern Utah.|
|Monuments everywhere through the Valley of the Gods.|
|Although a bit hazy, I have to slow for people standing in the middle of the highway to capture this iconic view.|
We're bummed that Amigos is closed in Kayenta and we're missing the best Navajo Tacos anywhere. Instead we opt for marginal offerings at the Burger King. I remember there's an exhibit here for the Navajo Code Talkers so it's a good spot to take a break. I take photos but they disappear from my phone (obviously very secret stuff here).
|The dog-tv is very limited here.|
Our 380 mile, Labor Day weekend, drive on Monday is a mix of two-lanes through green desert, city traffic, and familiar vistas. Although we've driven it before, I forget how much climbing and dropping there is on Hwy 17. Pretty though! The holiday hordes aren't bad through Phoenix and Tucson, but we're very happy to see our San Pedro Valley about 2 PM. And the skies are clear and blue!!!
|It's greener here than anywhere we've been since western Washington!|
Jeff has been great about sending us pics and keeping us informed on what's happening at the house. Still, nothing really prepares you for seeing your fireplace spread out across your living room, and large holes in the structure of your home. Our good friend Jim pointed out that you'd think it would be our home on wheels that a vehicle would drive into, not our stationary one!!
|Had it not been for the 800 lb cast-iron firebox and the massive brick hearth, he would likely have driven all the way through given his probable speed of 45 mph when he hit.|
|Bill's antique trunk with many of the keepsakes we kept when we went fulltime took the direct hit on that wall to the left of the fireplace. Landing upside down next to the recliner, nothing inside or on top of it was damaged!|
|One of several irreplaceable treasures (Brian made in third grade) that survived inside the damaged trunk.|
Tuesday a demo crew arrives from Tucson to haul off the fallen brick from inside the house and shore-up the damaged walls to make it safe. They brace the ceiling around the chimney in the garage, remove the damaged front door and carpet, and board up the holes to the outside. They comment several times on how the fireplace and chimney were built to survive hurricanes and earthquakes! Their trailer must have weighted 5000 lbs when they were done.
|The crew of four were efficient in getting the carpet out and the walls temporarily framed to hold up the ceiling after they spent hours hauling out bricks and dry wall.|
|Much better, but daunting knowing that chimney still has to come down.|
|Glad to have those braces in place for a couple days.|
Within a couple days we have an approved claim from State Farm with checks already in the mail. Our contractor who did our kitchen in 2019 is onboard to do the rebuild for us. Friday his crew arrives to remove the rest of the chimney, the ginormous firebox, and do a temporary patch on the roof. It sounds like something I want to watch them do. Until they start and instead Jeff and I go to town to run errands :-))
|No more brick chimney.|
|Once the chimney on the roof was off, they "pushed real hard" from inside and above.|
|It was a huge chimney.|
|So much better, but it does get old fast.|
|Red Cloud has held a place of honor in my home for decades.|
|I kept the horns, the only pieces left intact.|
|Little else remains identifiable.|
Now we wait. Not for our contractor or permits or the insurance companies (the driver's insurance company is covering everything so they are reimbursing State Farm and paying our deductible). We're waiting for Lowe's to deliver the firebox <groan>. As of today it's a week late, hopefully coming tomorrow. Reminds me of Janna's countertops last Spring!
|M&M with their PopPop.|
|Cousins Cindy, Terri, Bill, Jenny and David|
We continue to get afternoon storms nearly everyday. Most go to the south of us, but we have a few days of real wet. When we returned our yard was deep in weeds from all the monsoons of the summer so getting those knocked down was a priority the first week. We're just hoping they don't come back before winter hits!
Although we can't know when the rebuild will be done (it includes all new carpet throughout the house, painting, new fencing, etc.), we're heading out the end of October for our high school reunion and a couple weeks in SoCal to see the kids and Bill's college pals on the coast. Elliott will be a year old already, and as of two days ago Penelope Anne has joined the family - our seventh grandbaby!
|At ten months Elliott is walking, and growing much too fast!|
|Days before baby Penelope's arrival, Reese with mommy Emily.|
I'm convinced we've used up every bit of good Karma we had with how little personal property damage we had, and how quickly our insurance money got to us. When all is done we'll have several upgrades - both planned and not. Of course we'll be glad when it's all done!