Monday, November 30, 2009

Black Friday

I survived Black Friday. I didn't get up early and shop at 4:00 am or anything like that, but we did go to Billings Friday.

Our first stop was in Sheridan at the VA so that Gary could go in and get his blood pressure checked. The medication he is on right now just isn't doing the trick, but it has at least stopped it from going higher. We were told that they open at 7:30, we arrived at 8:00 am, checked in and waited an hour before he was called. It just doesn't pay to get there early. Anyway, his regular doc wasn't in, but the nurse told him that he wouldn't get a stronger dosage of what he is taking now, he will have to take another medicine in addition to what he is taking. He should be getting a phone call on Monday. He is not happy at all about having to take any kind of medicine. He fought this for 10 years, but his family history has finally caught up to him. We ate breakfast in Sheridan before heading to Billings.

Our first stop in Billings was at Nissan to get the oil changed in his truck. He thought it would take 20 minutes. Usually I am the one to take the truck in for oil changes and I told him that it would take over an hour, these guys are not speedy. Anyway we had plenty of time to look around at the new cars and trucks. I told him not to buy anything and this time I didn't go the the restroom.

We are in the market to getting a small utility trailer. He wants one to haul the motorcycle around. There are year round gatherings for bikers, but winter is just too cold to ride from Hardin to Billings. Anyway we decided to go ahead and get the trailer. If we don't like it we can always sell it. Now we have to order a hitch for the truck. For some strange reason he bought this truck without a towing package. It's going to cost about $300 to get the hitch and the labor for the installation. After leaving the Nissan dealership 2 hours later, we then headed to Laurel to buy a trailer.

We stopped at the trailer place and they just got in a used 12' trailer in a couple days ago. The original owner decided that it was too small for what he wanted and traded it in for a bigger one. It looks brand new and we don't think he used this one at all. We decided to go ahead and buy it for $1300 but we can't pick it up until next week. The little salesperson put our name on it and when we pick it up we will then pay for it.

We then made our way back to Billings, stopped at Wal-Mart to price micro waves. Ours is so old that it is not heating right. This was given to us by some friends who about 15 years ago bought a new one and gave us this one. Prices sure have come way down when micro waves first came out. We found one we wanted and I would pick it up on Saturday when I bring my car up to get serviced. That is another story.

We then decided to go to the mall to eat and watch people. Made it to the mall, but it was so crowded that we didn't even try. The parking lot was full, even the south forty part of the lot was full. We sort of peeked in the windows and all we could see was people shoulder to shoulder. No sense in trying to fight our way through that crowd just for something to eat. We went to Buffalo Wings and had a great burger.

It was getting late and we decided to go home, I had to come back up on Saturday anyway so anything we forgot I would get. It was a long day for us, but we enjoyed it.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Cat-Griz Game

Saturday was the big state rivalry game between the Montana State Bobcats and the University of Montana Grizzlies. This was the 109th meeting between these two teams and this game is huge in Montana. Gary and I went to Billings for Thanksgiving dinner shopping, then we went to the sport bar Bones to watch the game. We are Griz fans.

Surprisingly the bar was not crowded and we had our pick of where to sit. We chose a table that was right in front of a tv. Our view was not blocked by anyone sitting in front of us. We ate lunch as they have great burgers here. Most of the crowd were Grizzly fans, but there were plenty of Bobcat fans there as well.

Needless to say the Grizzlies won, 33-19 and once again is undefeated in the regular season. This makes the 4th time that the Grizzlies have an undefeated season, now we are headed to the playoffs.

The Grizzlies are ranked #1 in the standing for the playoffs and first team we play is the SDSU (South Dakota) Jackrabbits. The game will be held in Missoula, so we are keeping our fingers crossed that it will air on one of the Billings tv stations. If not will be listening to the game ont he radio. This is the 17th straight year that the Grizzlies have been in the post season playoffs. They haven't won it 17 times, but they have been in the playoffs.

Monday, November 16, 2009

White Elephant Auction

Yesterday our HOG chapter had their annual white elephant auction and pot luck. I made magic bars for the pot luck and for the auction I made up a basket with a bottle of red wine and four wine glasses.

We went up to Billings early in the morning just to shop around. We need to get a new computer as our old one is soooo slow. It takes a long time to boot up and also the programs are slow running. You have to be very patient and there are times when you have time to run errands before it wakes up. I have decided that it is a male computer.

Anyway, we only went to price the new computers and ended up buying one. We got an HP lap top and it has all that we need and then some. I am happy about the 4G of memory that we have, now I can really load up the computer with photos. It was on sale along with a $50 mail in rebate. We are going to Billings on black Friday, but the sale was ending this week and no guarantee that this computer will be on sale black Friday and at that price. Let alone be in stock. We figured why not, go ahead and get it. Won't look at prices on black Friday.

We got to the HOG meeting place early. This winter we are meeting at a sports bar, they are very accomodating for biker groups. We get a whole room to ourselves. Gary and I went early to watch some of the ball games before the meeting.

We have a very short meeting, had to vote for the treasurer position as two people actually wanted the office. Gary voted for one guy and I voted for the other. We like both men and feel either one will be a good treasurer. After the meeting we all got to eat the yummy food that was brought in. There were all kinds of salads and desserts, a couple potato dishes. The only vegetable was corn and for meat our choices were chicken or ham. It was all good. Then the auction started.

At first we weren't going to bid on any items. I did get a chance to look and thought that it would be nice to have a couple of the items. The top items this year were three jackets. There was a leather jacket with fringe, a denim jacket with a removable liner and a women's leather bomber jacket. The denim and leather bomber jacket were brand new. Whoever brought them bought them at Dillards, as there was a card on them stating what the retail price was and that these jackets had never been worn.

I ended up taking home the leather bomber jacket for $55. The original retail price was $340. I was the woman picked to model the jacket and it fits perfectly. Gary and I didn't get a chance to talk about it as we weren't sitting together. I really wasn't too sure how high to bid. When it was announced that I was the winning bid, Gary just shook his head. I had been looking for a new leather jacket but hadn't found one. I was going to buy it with my Wendover winnings.

Once Gary and I got to talk about it, he said just to pay for it with the check book and Merry Christmas. He said that if I wasn't going to bid on it, he was. It is very nice and will keep me warm. Once I get a photo of it, I will get it posted.

We had a good day, came home with a new lap top computer and leather jacket.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Gambling Fun

Gary and I went to West Wendover Nevada for a four day gambling trip. We went with two other couples from Hardin. One is our neighbor. We had a great time and had alot of fun. We came home with more money than we started with. Not a great lot but it was more. Made alot of rookie mistakes but we learned.

We left here Saturday morning, we had some running around Billings to do before getting to the airport. We ate breakfast at the Muzzleloader, wanted to have a good filling meal as we would be eating a late supper. Our flight left Billings at 2:00 pm and we had to check in 90 minutes before. We parked in long term parking and waited for our friends at the ticket counter. We checked in at the airport, got our seat assignments. Gary and I both had aisle seats. The flight left Billings at 2:00 and we arrived in Wendover at 3:30. On the plane they raffled off some coupons for a free buffet and then we all played for the bag of bucks. You write your seat number on a dollar bill. Once they gather all the bucks, they will then draw one and if your seat number is called, you win the bag of bucks. None of us were lucky. We were losing before we landed.

We arrived in Wendover, got off the plane on the the bus to our hotel. There are three huge casinos, Montego Bay, The Peppermill and The Rainbow. We stayed at The Peppermill. That is the one in the middle. Besides you pay $10 more per person to stay at the Montego Bay. We got checked into our hotel. Got our packet, we each got coupons for gambling, meals, a free cocktail and the gift shop. We also got a players card and instructions for leaving. We didn't have to pick up our luggage, it was delivered to our room. We did go up to the room to check it out and also to find it. You have to get on the right elevator as these hotels have wings. With nothing to do but gamble, we walked around to check it out.

The first night Gary didn't play the machines. When he found out he could bet on sports,he was getting all the information he needed to bet on the football games. I got my instructions on how to play the penny machines. Before I would always lose my money in nothing flat on those machines. I had better luck with the poker machines. The first night I played my original $20 the whole night.

Sunday we decided to go to The Rainbow casino. We did play some of the machines earlier in the morning, but I was losing so I quit playing. Gary paced his bets on the football games. I also betted on the games. I had no clue what I was doing anyway, so why not. We went to the Rainbow, Gary found the area with the sports on and he was able to watch his games. I was playing the machines. My luck changed here at the Rainbow. I won $50 on one machine,so I cashed out and went to a different one. After about two hours I decided to give it one more try. I put $10 in a machine. It didn't take long when I cashed out with $140. I had hit some wilds on a bet that I won $136 worth of credits. That was good enough for me, so I cashed out. I had won smaller amounts here and there all day long. We didn't gamble all day and night, we did take breaks. The casinos are close enough that you can walk, there was a Burger King in between, so we would go there for a coke and just get out of the casino for a while. We went back and gambled some more. I won $60 more on a machine. We ate dinner at the Steakhouse. We had a coupon for buy one entree and get the other one free up to $30. We finished watching the football games for the night. We didn't win anything on football.

Monday we decided to go to Montego Bay to gamble. Gary and I both bet on the NBA games. This time Gary found out how to bet from some of his sports buddies. I bet on one game and he bet on another. We both did all right during the day. Our luck changed for the better during the evening. Our luck was better at the Rainbow, so we decided to go back there. Sure enough after playing the machines I cashed out with $100. I could have won more but we were getting ready to eat. This was our last night together so we all ate the buffet at the Rainbow. It is called the Rainforest buffet and they have stuffed parrots in trees. You get the sounds like you would in a rainforest. Mom and I had stayed at this casino when we were coming home from Napa and ate the buffet.

After supper Gary and I made our way back to Montego Bay. Since we placed our NBA bets there if we won we had to redeem there. Lesson learned, place your bets at the casino where you are staying. I won on my bet $38. Gary's game was the late one. We decided that since this is our last night that we would splurge on gambling and play the $1 machines. First we found the penny slot machines. We only played the ones with 9 lines. We both won, I won $50 and Gary won $60. We also got our free cocktail at Montego. This was one of the coupons we had, I had a margarita, Gary had a Jack & coke.

Since his NBA game was still going on and it was getting late, after 11:00 pm we decided to play our $1 machine. We found the slot machines with 9 lines. We both put in $20 because we would have played it anyway. I cashed out with $70 and Gary cashed out with $60. Gary said that he could check his ticket in the morning. Our flight didn't leave until noon anyway and we could get on the shuttle. If he didn't win then it was ok.

Tuesday morning arrived. Remember I told you that we each got those player cards. Gary never did put his in the machines. I did and I earned enough points that our breakfast was free. Nothing in the paperwork said that these were could towards meals and the gift shop. We did get a free meal out of it. We finished packing, checked our luggage in at the hotel. They took the luggage up to the airport for us. With time to waste, played some more machines. We didn't have any luck. We are just not morning gamblers. Soon it was announced that the bus arrived to take us to the airport.

Arrived at the airport and it took them a while to get all of us through security. First you checked in and the lady would check your names off her list. She had a hard time finding names, but they weren't listed in alphabetical order. Then we went through the security and we had about an hour wait before we could board the plane. The other couple that wen with us stayed at the Rainbow. It was a long time before we saw them at the airport, we were getting worried that they didn't get on the bus. They got to the airport just in time. As soon as they went through security we started boarding. They were the last ones at the airport, but the first ones on the plane.

Our flight left at noon and we landed in Billings at 1:00 pm. Since we were 20 minutes early we had to wait on the runway before getting to the gate. There was one man sitting in front of me and didn't like the waiting. He was grumbling about it. We got home in Hardin around 3:00.

We both had such a good time that Gary really wants to do this trip again next year. I was worried that he would have been bored, but once he found out he could bet on the games he was in heaven. Since our return he has been watching and practicing on the football and basketball games.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Wendover Bound

Saturday Gary and I are leaving for West Wendover Nevada for a four day gambling trip. We are going with some friends of ours, so there are six of us in total.

Last year at Christmas time, our friends who happen to be our neighbors host a party. Alot of alcohol is consumed at this party. This is when our friend was talking to Gary and said that we should do a weekend gambling trip later on. My Gary said that would be fun.

Our neighbor is not a man who forgets things. It was a few months later when he stopped in my office for coffee. This is when he told me that Gary had said that we would do this weekend gambling trip with them. When our neighbor got the special information we would make our reservations.

In August our neighbor got the information and this turns out to be a four day gambling trip. I reminded Gary about this and he remembers agreeing to a weekend trip. Anyway, we are obligated so we made our reservations.

For $130 per person we get the flight and three nights stay at the casino and we had our choice of which casino we wanted to stay at. There are three casinos, so we will be staying at the Peppermill. This is the one in the middle. Once we check in we will each get a packet with coupons and other special little things inside. All we have to do is pay for our meals and the gambling.

Gary has been grumbling about this trip for the past couple months. He is not too sure about spending all this together time with our neighbors. They are very nice people, but he feels that four days will be a bit much. We don't have to spend all of our time gambling. There is a museum there that shows either the history of the Enola Gay or the two bombs, not sure which.

We leave Billings at 2:00 pm and will land in West Wendover at around 3:30 pm. We will come home on Tuesday leaving Wendover at noon and getting back to Billings around 1:30 pm.

Over the past couple days, Gary is lightening up about going and he is looking forward to some vacation time. He is pretty happy when he found out that he will be able to watch his football. I think we will have a good time.

The other couple who is going made their reservations late so they are staying in a different casino. In fact they are going to stay at the one that Mom and I stayed in on our way back from Napa in July.

We will have a good time. I kept all the paperwork to make sure that we get what we paid for and I'm sure we will, otherwise they wouldn't be able to do all the specials. I will most definately be taking my camera so will have photos of the trip. This is our last one until next year when we go to Greece.