So it's time to make it our own. Here's what we've done since arriving two weeks ago:
1. We brought Larisa, our Designer Cat. Though our park model is in the non-pet section, there's an unwritten understanding about indoor cats. I have told Larisa she has to be an indoor cat during our months in Arizona. So far, she seems agreeable. To make that easier for her, we bought a cat condo - a structure for sharpening claws, climbing, and sitting off the floor. She's explored it, motivated by the treats I put on each level a couple of times a day. We've also ordered a smaller structure for by the door of the Arizona room, and a cat bed for lounging. Larisa lived under our bed until three days ago. Now she sleeps on the bed and comes out for dinner and treats in the condo. Her normal life has resumed in a different residence.
2. I brought a quilt from home and replaced the comforter on the bed. The comforter will go in a plastic bag for use by visitors who will sleep on our air mattress.
3. We bought a metal javalina at the vendor fair on Wednesday to put in the tiny desert garden in front of our park model. It's in memory of Bud, our potbellied pig, who lived to be nearly 19 and looked an awful lot like a javalina, though pigs and javalinas are not related at all. I thought it would look tacky, but where Art placed the little metal animal it looks kind of cool - like the javalina is eating the cactus out there.
4. I ordered a table with adjustable legs from Ikea. I have a standing computer table at home, and I'll be able to do the same thing here as soon as the table parts arrive. I can tell my back and neck are not crazy about my computer work at the dining table.
5. I ordered a 99-gallon deck box for storing items we need but don't use regularly: extra blankets and comforters, tools, storage boxes. It should fit just fine in a corner of our deck.
6. We ordered the parts needed to repair or replace the rods for the eight sets of one-inch aluminum blinds that cover the windows in our front room. Last year I had to stretch to reach the little turning piece at the top of the blind. Now that we own the place, we can reinstall the rods to twist instead. We also downloaded the manual for our oven and figured out how to set the thermostat.
7. We bought a Coleman portable bbq from Amazon. Actually, I ordered two by mistake. Though the shipping was free on both, returning one of them will cost $45. So I've placed an ad on the bulletin board in the activities complex to see if we can sell it to avoid the return postage. I figure one mistake is human, but I wish the extra something had been more lightweight.
8. We set up two laptop computers and a wireless printer. The printer ran out of black ink quite soon so I have ordered more ink - an ongoing expense, unfortunately.
We're pretty much set up now, so we're getting on with our winter activities.
9. We started our community activities: we took line dancing lessons on Tuesday. On Wednesday morning Art sat at a table at our every-other-week vendor fair and sold four of our Vietnam books. He told me they would be Christmas presents. He also talked to four Vietnam vets who came by. In the afternoon I went to the current events discussion. And Art has signed up to be in the cast of the Second Annual Voyager Light Opera's play, Guys and Dolls (abridged version). He had rehearsals on Monday and Thursday afternoons and, as of today, has purchased his costume and props from Goodwill in Tucson.
10. And we both have bad colds. Climate change, maybe?