Sunday, January 17, 2016

Hodge Podge

Our first stop on the brochure run...we could not service this kiosk. The flood waters have been drained into Lake Pontchartrain, flooding Lake Road.

I really like this castle. Somebody must have a queen to live here.

Last year it looked like the Leaning Tower of Pisa.  

It looks good now.

Our work this past week included repairs to the boardwalk at Bogue Chitto refuge. Bogue Chitto is a Choctaw name meaning big stream.

We don't want anyone falling through on these rotten boards. We replaced a total of 15 with 7 more to go.

The runners underneath are getting bad too. With some of the good ends of the rotten boards we replaced, we secured some of the runners as well. Not an easy feat. 

This kind of work is unacceptable to us. It has now been fixed. This was done by our predecessor. I will show you why in the next photo.

Sometimes to get a board in right, you have to remove a top runner, then drill a hole in the board to insert a long bolt back through to secure it.

Wallace gets to do all the hard part of this job.

Sometimes you just have to get creative as some of the bolts are a little rusty and you have to pry them out!!!

Before going out, I cut the replacement boards to size in our nice work shop while Wallace trudges them out to the truck.

Cooling off my smoking hot drill.

While Wallace is struggling with some of the harder work, I get to secure the boards to the boardwalk.

This was replaced with a nice new board at one of the overlooks at the same place.

We replaced several of these boards last year on this same overlook.

Isn't this a pretty entrance? We had passed it up several times hoping to get a photo of it before they took them was the day.

While out and about, you have to be mindful of these kinds of critters. A cotton mouth snake, and we have seen several lately.

When we make our brochure run which includes several stops, we check things. There have been a couple of signs with graffiti. Here I am painting over it.

The brown wasn't quite the right brown, but it looked good when I finished and now the graffiti is history...for a while.

Last blog, I showed you Fritchie Marsh...what it looked like before and after the mess was cleaned up. This week when we went back, it still looked great with only a little bit of trash to pick up. Hooray!

This is what it now looks like!!!

There is a tradition around Mardi Gras time that includes a King Cake. There is a plastic baby hidden inside and whoever gets the piece with it gets to bring the next years cake. Ours had cream cheese filling.

While out at the mall yesterday, just had to stop for this photo.

Our granddaughters birthday is today, she is eleven. We HAD to go shopping for that.

You might notice, the shirt Wallace is wearing was given to us for donating blood. It has the Fleur-de-lis design on it. He now has two of them as those shirts are always X large. We donate all around this country and proud to do so.

That has caught us up on our doings, so, until next time!!!

Thursday, January 7, 2016

Behind Those Gates

is where we live. This is the entrance to Southeast Louisiana National Wildlife Refuges Headquarters and Visitor Center situated in Lacombe, Louisiana. A few miles south of interstate 12.

For those of you new to our blog, we live on these 110 acres. It is just one of eight refuges in this complex with a total of over 270,000 acres...a mighty big place with miles to cover!!! Breton is on an island out in the gulf and it is the second oldest refuge that was established in 1904. Pelican Island in Florida is the oldest.

We arrived here just before the new year and this was our new years day dinner...cornish game hen, whipped potatoes, AND black-eyed peas.

Getting here at this time was pretty laid back what with most of the staff taking vacation mixed with the extra holidays...we worked only four hours...but this week we really got going.

Our home on wheels is the first one as you enter the volunteer campground. Each couple has their own government truck to use while on the job.

Headquarters are located in what once was used as a school and seminary retreat center for the Holy Redeemer Church.

In 1940, Governor Richard Leche lived here on the grounds and the place was known as Bayou Gardens for all the camellias, over 400 species, that were planted.

It is a wonderful, beautiful, and serene place with many nice trails to walk and contemplate.

The governors old house is now our law enforcement building, and just past that, walking the above trail, you come upon this cemetery where some of the priests are buried.

This used to be the church that has been turned into the visitor center.

This should be your first stop to learn more.

There is a bookstore/gift shop and many nice displays.

One of our duties here is to keep this old fountain running and free of leaves...a nice place to relax and savor the beauty.

Our first day this week was spent with this group picking up garbage. We did this for a few hours, then went on our way to fill brochures at Bayou Sauvage and while there we pick up more trash.

This is how much we helped with before we left.

There is this place called Fritchie Marsh where we had this waiting on us.

The couple that just left was supposed to be keeping this place cleaned up...what do you think????

We picked up 5 bags of trash, that old wicker chair, a tire, and a car battery. The sad thing is we did not finish as the rains came and sent us away for the day.

You can see how the eight refuges are scattered around.

Refuges belong to you and me and are paid for with tax payer dollars. Please support these refuges and get out to enjoy them. 

Until next time...