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  • Duffy is wearing his baggy gangsta wannabe jeans but my sister had the eyes popping open emoticon and said, "Duffy looks like he's wearing a denim skirt!" Duffy snorted and said, "I'll lend her my glasses when she gets here" (my sister does not wear corrective lenses at all).
    Last edited by JillT; 03-30-2017, 04:44 PM.


    • Haaaaa!! Well i for one like da bears' fashion choices


      • Oh, Duffy! LOL. We thought he looked fine. And I love Tillie's outfit!

        Then Dusty and I went to the Ostrich Festival (!). I'd never been.The historic McCroskey House was open (it's only open for special occasions). Goodness it was hot, and it was only March!

        I was very excited because we made it just in time!

        Old-timey kitchen.

        They had 2 or 3 tiny bedrooms for a whole large family. I couldn't imagine!

        There were also a lot of rides at the Ostrich Festival, but we only rode the Matterhorn. It was nothing like Disneyland' was almost identical to the one at Cedar Point, but it was more rickety and also goes forwards and then backwards. It was a lot of fun!

        I am afraid of heights so we did not ride this thing.

        We also saw the ostrich races! The ostriches were really funny.

        Nighttime! Arrrr pirates!

        We got some delicious and reasonably priced cookies. Mmmmm cookies.

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        • I've never heard of that festival. I think ostrich's can be really aggressive; I've had them come pecking in my window in drive through animal parks. I think the races look fun, though, AND funneeeee.


          • Thank you, JillT! There's an ostrich ranch between Phoenix and Tucson; I should probably visit it someday. (I've heard they can be vicious too. These didn't seem mean at all, but they did seem strong!)

            The next day we went to Butterfly Wonderland!

            So many chrysalises!

            "Hello, tiny friend!"

            "And you! How pretty!"

            "What a lovely place!"

            "Are you resting? Me too!"

            No butterflies landed on Shellie May, but they liked me OK!

            "Wait. Did I see you before?"

            "You are all so beautiful! I think I like the blue ones best, though."

            THIS MOTH though?! Shellie May is a bit smaller than a 12" Duffy...but not by that much. :o

            "It is so big!"

            They had a little coloring station outside.

            And these fish. That face...!

            Then we made a quick trip to El Pollo Loco to use my coupons....mmmm El Pollo Loco...

            And then to the mall, officially because my friend wanted Dippin' Dots, though we also found a dress she wanted. I got Bubble Gum because part of me is a 5-year-old. The colors remind me of memory globes from Inside Out!
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            • Eeee-va, those butterfly species are very unique. I've gone to many butterfly gardens but it seems like most of them just have the common species. That place looked really wild! My Shellie May says she loves your Shellie May's headband!


              • My sister visited from April 1 to April 10; I just dropped her and Rockgirl off at the airport this morning.

                So here are our pics.

                Rockgirl arrived and ran to say hello.

                A big bear hug for Rockgirl, Duffy, and Shellie May.

                "Did you save any lemon curd for me?" asked Rockgirl of Tillie.

                "Um, nooooooo," was the answer.

                Lo♥ey gave Rockgirl a Swiss kiss.

                "Come look at all my music themed clothing," said Shellie May.

                "Wow, that is impressive," said Rockgirl.

                Rockgirl has cousins by the dozens to visit with and she is a VERY sociable bear.

                Shellie May told Rockgirl she was the guest of honor and could sit on the throne.

                Last edited by JillT; 04-14-2017, 11:14 AM.


                • Sorry, sometimes when my stuff says "unapproved" and goes into the Bermuda triangle, in months and years past, it would never come back. Now sometimes it does show up so this was a double post.
                  Last edited by JillT; 04-18-2017, 06:09 PM.


                  • Rockgirl did not come empty handed. "We made a run to Costco for you, and the Fannie May mint meltaways and half a cinnamon loaf are our treat," she said.

                    I thanked her.

                    I had also ensured that my sister and Rockgirl would be well fed here.

                    Those are butterscotch clusters. The recipe is 1 package of butterscotch chips melted slowly with 3 tblsp. of peanut butter, and then gently folded into corn flakes, dropped by spoon to cool on wax paper.

                    "Yummy," said Rockgirl.

                    Rockgirl and Francesca made friends by eating the madeleines, which are better than the packaged madeleines in a French grocery store, although not as good as fresh from a bakery!

                    By the end of the day, da bears had made quite a big dent in the mint meltaways so I gave them each one more and then took the box away so that my sister and I would have some before they were all gone!

                    Last edited by JillT; 04-14-2017, 11:14 AM.


                    • Thanks, JillT! Evidently they bring in chrysalises from tropical locations to get such brightly colored butterflies.

                      And wow, your bears live so well! I'm hungry just looking at your photos! I love the sweet hugs, too.

                      Having some photo posting problems for some reason; I'll try again later.
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                      • We went to one more local destination--Rawhide!

                        "Whoa! It is like a ghost town!"

                        I think this is where my friend and I got old-timey photos taken. I'd always wanted one!


                        This said not to sit on it. Shellie May, no!

                        Little playground.

                        This cannon was used in the movie Wild Wild West. It also accurately depicts how hot it felt!

                        We went to the candy shop and the clerk was so delighted by my "steampunk bear"!

                        There was a little nature walk outside, too. Very pretty!

                        Oh, and this is the gingerbread man I bought at the Ostrich Festival. So funny!

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                        • Is Rawhide the wild west town somewhere on the north side of Phoenix? If so, I've been there.


                          • We went to Opry Mills Mall, to Dave and Busters, ate lunch at Johnny Rockets, and saw "Get out" at the theater. My sister picked up a Nashville shirt for Roaming Roger. When we got home, Rockgirl asked Duffy if he thought Roaming Roger would like it.

                            "Oh, yeahhhhh, I have that shirt," Duffy exclaimed. He had forgotten all about it. Well, as long as he could still wear skechers, albeit a different pair, he went and modeled the shirt for Rockgirl.

                            Meanwhile, Rockgirl donned a pair of her own cowgirl boots.

                            "When in Nashville, do as the Nashvillians do," she said as they started line dancing.

                            "I'm a little bit country, I'm a LOT MORE rock 'n' roll," she sang.

                            It was bothering my sister that Shaggy Duffy didn't have any clothes, so I dressed him. He didn't complain but my sister thought he might feel neglected. She's such a good sister!



                            • Another double
                              Last edited by JillT; 04-18-2017, 06:09 PM.


                              • Rockgirl is an indoor bear and declined going on any adventures. Duffy and Shellie May are independent little bears and are accustomed to leaving da others behind.

                                "See ya," they said, as they exited.

                                We went hiking around Radnor Lake State Recreation Area, right in Nashville. The larkspur was in full bloom.

                                We didn't get the state passport stamped here because both my sister and I have been here several times already and it's already covered.

                                We saw a wild turkey, frogs, geese, ducks, flowering trees, turtles, and lichen and mushrooms, and of course, the lake.

                                Then we went to Biscuit Love.

                                We each got the biscuit french toast, with marscapone, blueberries, and maple cream (runny, not sticky) syrup.

                                Last edited by JillT; 04-14-2017, 11:15 AM.


                                • Another day, da bears supervised my sister's coloring.

                                  "Look, a Disney movie came into OUR library before yours so we brought it to watch," said Rockgirl of the movie "Queen of Katwe".

                                  It was okay but it was long and dragged out.



                                  • Great adventures, JillT! Your crew is dressed so cute (as usual) and the Radnor Lake State Recreation Area looks lovely! I love the flowers and the trees. (Not QUITE as many of either here!) Too bad that Queen of Katwe wasn't as good as it could be. I find myself watching mostly animated films; oh dear.

                                    Rawhide used to be in North Phoenix/Scottsdale, but they moved it to the southeast Valley quite a while ago. I'd actually never been to it in its new location!

                                    My friend and I had a rather grueling drive to California. We stayed at a well-reviewed hotel within walking distance of Knott's (Disneyland was not in the budget). They had a lovely gift basket waiting for us, complete with wine (!)...

                                    ...and a cockroach waiting for us in the morning, which was not so good. They did do what they could to make it right and put us in a better room in their other building for the next night. My poor friend still had to sleep with a light on, though!

                                    We were the second and third people at the entrance to Knott's Berry Farm! I was worried about taking Shellie May on coasters, so I brought my little bear Annie, a badge who came pre-dressed in my favorite Sweet Duffy outfit (2015).

                                    But Knott's has cubbies you can stow all your stuff in, so Shellie May could have come along. It's okay, though; the park was not busy at all so we didn't really take many photos. We were too busy riding all the rides! This must have been Silver Bullet, an inverted coaster, so your feet dangle. I love that!

                                    Voyage to the Iron Reef was a shooter kind of like Toy Story Midway Mania.

                                    I didn't love it and we got stuck for a few minutes right near the exit! The worker came to us personally to tell us that they had called maintenance...we were only stuck for a few minutes and in a pinch I could've climbed out and gone through the exit, which was in sight, so it wasn't scary.

                                    Hmmm...I am not sure if Annie fits in the seat for Xcelerator...

                                    It goes 200 feet in the air straight up, and then straight down! The line was short so we waited maybe 10-15 minutes for the front seat, which was worth it. This was the only ride I was actively scared to ride but I did it and I'm glad I did. It wasn't so bad!

                                    Our breakfast was a churro sundae with boysenberry sauce!

                                    We rode the Calico Mine Ride, which has rather impressive animatronics, and the Timber Mountain Log Ride, which was also quite scenic. I think they can be favorably compared to Disney's, though the mechanics of the mine ride weren't nearly as impressive as Big Thunder Mountain Railroad. (The day got hot so I'm glad we rode the log ride when we did--the line got long!)

                                    We went on Jaguar, which is supposed to be more of a family coaster but my goodness, it was so bumpy!

                                    Swing ride!

                                    They had an "Old West" show. I thought it was kind of cute; my friend was less impressed. But it was too hot!

                                    We did a couple more things but then my friend got cold (she's from Florida and isn't cheap like me so her house hasn't been at 65 all winter, LOL) so we went back to get her a sweatshirt.

                                    Our nicer room was nice.

                                    We rode the train! They have "robbers" come through. Maybe most charming, though, was a young girl who seemed like she may have never been to an amusement park before. She was excited at the train, excited by the train whistle, and when the bandits came into view, she squealed, "Cowboys!"

                                    By this point, we'd ridden everything we actually wanted to except Pony Express (which was closed) and the Scrambler. I don't know why, but I love rides that swing you around and squish you. I was laughing the whole time and I think my friend had fun too.

                                    Then we rode the wooden coaster GhostRider again. We rode it first thing in the morning, and then it kept up a pretty long line all day, unlike almost everything else. It was a lot of fun to ride in the front car and at night. (At Knott's, you get to choose where you sit on the coasters. Most of them have a separate place to wait to sit in the front because more people want to sit there than on any other seat. But since this is a wooden coaster, there's a separate place to wait to sit in the BACK for the airtime. We sat in the front instead with no real extra wait and it was actually really fun, at least at night.

                                    (We actually rode Xcelerator once more too! We didn't manage to sit in the front but at night I don't think it matters so was fun!)

                                    Then we went to what may have been the world's most under-staffed TGI Friday's. (I literally think there may have only been 4 people working the whole place.) Though honestly, I've had slower and less attentive service from places that were fully staffed.

                                    It was expensive because it's in Knott's Marketplace, but my friend and I split an entree and that was enough for us.
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                                    • Eeee-va, that's way cool about Knottsberry Farm. I was there as a 12 year old but I don't remember much of it and I thought it had been remodeled but then had closed down a few years ago. I'm adding it to my mental bucket list again now that I know it's still open

                                      Your little Shellie May looks cute with the sandwich at the last picture. She's so petite!

                                      Gas heating is 3.5x as high in TN as in IL so I keep my house at 64-67 myself.


                                      • We went hiking again. Edgar Evins State Park is a new state park for me and of course, for my sister.

                                        Duffy has better luck getting the stamps done correctly.

                                        Duffy also enjoyed looking at the barred owl.

                                        We went to City Lake Park in Cookeville, TN.

                                        They have a gravel trail to a waterfall.

                                        "Ooo, and there's a water trickle," said Shellie May when she pivoted her head.

                                        Next we went to Burgess Falls State Park. The view from the BOTTOM of the main falls is my 2nd favorite waterfall EVER (White River Falls in Oregon is my first favorite) but alas, the trail has eroded so badly that part is no longer open.

                                        The first part of the main trail has this cascade.

                                        There are three official waterfalls on the trail. Here is the first one.

                                        Then here is a water trickle.

                                        "We're so glad you are going to carry us up!"

                                        Here is a destroyed overlook.

                                        By peeking in the trees before the outcropping, we could still see the waterfall.

                                        Here is the main waterfall.

                                        Here is the head waters of the main waterfall before it goes over.

                                        Here is what we missed (that I saw years ago before the trail fell off the edge of the earth, LITERALLY).

                                        "Awwwww, RATS!" said da bears (well, and my SISTER!)

                                        Last edited by JillT; 04-14-2017, 06:38 PM.


                                        • Oh, JillT, your photos are stunning! What a beautiful place! Do they have plans to repair the paths/bridges? The waterfalls are so beautiful! The water trickles crack me up; I'd call them a waterfall out here...

                                          Knott's Berry Farm has changed a lot; I'd last visited when I was a teenager myself. I think it's definitely worth seeing (I think admission was $42 if you buy online!) but it is a lot more about the coasters now. The stagecoach passes within maybe 30 feet of a roller coaster track; we didn't ride but it seemed to me like it would be a bizarre and surreal experience. And thank you, I love my itty ShellieMay! She travels in my car with me all the time!

                                          The next morning, we went back to Knott's Marketplace to do a bit of shopping.

                                          New friend?

                                          Pressed penny machine! I wanted a TGI Friday's penny in memory of our experience. But I think the machine was haunted. It had a penny and a quarter already in it, so I just had to put another quarter in! But then I told it to make me a TGI Friday's penny and it gave me...a Knott's penny! I thought maybe the alignment was off so I tried a Snoopy coin and got a Snoopy coin and a Knott's coin and got a Knott's coin...I was about to try a TGI Friday's coin one more time but I checked my wallet and...a TGI Friday's coin was in it! I THINK what happened was that there must have been a Knott's coin in the dispenser and I must have somehow scooped it up on accident instead of the TGI Friday's one. Either that or ghosts!


                                          Then we made a quick stop at Daiso (a $1.50 store from Japan) and then we went to the FABULOUS Queen Mary ship/hotel to stay the night! It was wonderful!!

                                          "These cubbies remind me of the ones at Knott's Berry Farm!"
                                          Last edited by Eeee-va; 04-15-2017, 07:17 PM.
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