Friday, March 24, 2017

Busy Routine

As a lot of my dear readers know I have cut back on my publishing; simply because I do not wish to bore you. We have settled into a semi routine existence with Missy working at Six Flags Fiesta and me working in maintenance at a local RV resort. Since I work weekends Missy has also taken on the responsibility of keeping our drone business up and running. Missy is still suffering from the burn out that can come from working 24-7 for years on an oil field gate. I kind of liked the routine (and the money), but will allow Missy to return when she sees fit.

The drone business is slowly growing and we celebrated a year in business in February. That's a milestone for a lot of reasons; as I understand a great percentage of businesses fail to last a year. We had several celebratory events with camera drones for $30 being the most popular. We now have at least two wholesalers we can depend upon and recently established a relationship with a large company near Dallas. They have accounts with truckstops, Amazon and Walmart, to name a few. They cannot keep up with their tech support so we have assumed that responsibility in exchange for drones. That has added yet another dimension to our business as the tech support line has resulted in us sending drone parts all over the USA. Finally, we have established and published a web page which you can visit at www.thedronedoctor.net.

It looks as if the RV park where I work will be slowing down as the winter Texans head north. It remains to be seen if my health will allow me to perform the more strenuous activities they'll expect of me as traffic ramps down. I may shorten my work week and perform some gate guarding or just gate guard part time. Having the security license opens up a lot of opportunities. As I have said in the past, if you feel "trapped" gate guarding because of the income (or other reasons), you can wean yourself away from it. It has not been easy, but we now know we don't have to be dependent on it.

I will continue to update as warranted. Spring has arrived and the annual renewal with it. Time to spiff things up, get organized and enjoy life. Happy Trails!!


Thursday, January 26, 2017

Wake Up America!

You cannot run a country forever with deficit spending, porous borders, and; especially, a polarized government. That's only mentioning a few of the things ailing our great country. I consider myself part of the grass roots movement that swept Trump into office. My support and faith never wavered even to the point of sending financial contributions.

I find it almost humorous that the entrenched politicos and others potentially affected by Trump's stated policy changes are "running for the exits". All you "nasty women" (her words, not mine), enviro wackos and fem Nazis; to name just a few, your day of reckoning is upon you. We have pandered to the minority and ultra sensitive for way too long.

I'm against federalizing our police forces, but have tried for a long time to highlight the slaughter and semi anarchy in the streets of Chicago.

I feel for the anchor babies and others that have innocently been dragged into the immigration controversy. However, we cannot allow sanctuary cities and illegals to run the streets and rob our nation of its identity and resources.

I feel we cannot be the worlds police force and support a mobile, quick reaction military whose strength is second to none. We seem to have forgotten the painful lessons of Vietnam and continue to find ourselves mired in untenable situations.

I find myself extremely disappointed that our countries infrastructure has eroded around us while little seems to get done.

I am supportive of proven alternative energy sources. but feel proven fossil fuel sources should remain as a first choice.

I feel we are at war with China and Russia who continue to rob our country in innumerable ways; including, but not limited to technology.

For too long we have been a rudderless nation with the three branches of government seemingly unable to function as the founders intended. It is the Executive branch's responsibility to set an agenda and lead the government. We have lacked an effective manager and leader for this country for a long time. Hopefully, those that have lived off of the largesse of our corrupted government fear the impending day of reckoning. Instead of fighting change, perhaps we should embrace it and see where a well led, fiduciarily responsible country can go and what great heights it can achieve.          

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Lifestyle Changes

Just about every one of the past six years has found us on a gate as fulltime gate guards. This year, six plus years in the pucker brush finally wore us down. Eventually everyone grows tired of answering the bell or just says "no mas" and moves on. We are suffering from "gate guard burnout" and need to recharge our batteries. I have suffered through the yearly assault of mountain cedar, pneumonia, every type of bronchial infection you can imagine from the dust and a heart attack. Except for the heart attack, we managed to soldier on while remaining on the gate. Add to that, I "officially" became a senior citizen by tapping into my social security account, which also restricts the amount of income I can earn. We remain on the books at J&G, although their response has been tepid, at best. Our plan has been to work day gates and relief, but our phone has not rung much. We worked very hard as contractors and our reputation in the oil field was second to none. We also, for the most part, enjoy(ed) working for J&G. Missy and I are somewhat surprised because we expected that J&G would be more supportive of our lifestyle changes. As my friend says, "There is no sniffling in the oil patch", and the patch remains notorious for the ebb and flow of work, so hopefully things will eventually pick up for us.

The drop in income has caused some belt tightening around here. Along with being more cautious with our spending, we have also cut what bills we can. I have taken a part time job at the RV park where we are staying which pays the lot rent and puts a little jingle in my pocket. Missy not only works the flea market, she also has started working in the home health care business again. The drone business is growing and we derive income from that. We recently received our biggest shipment yet (150-160) drones and have been very busy inventorying and repairing them. Those of you hesitant to break away from the income stream that gate guarding provides should know that it can be done. You might even realize that you enjoy taking a break now and then.

We are both looking forward to 2017, especially with my health issues, which makes me value every day that I am given. We consider ourselves members of the conservative movement and supported Trump in his campaign to get elected. No matter the outcome we remain resolute that changes had to be made. It is telling that the Democrats continue to stall at every turn; even though they soon will be the minority party. Apparently eight plus years of infighting, along with a polarized Congress, has failed to make an impression on a lot of politicians. How ironic that just the threat of running our government in a fiscally responsible way has a lot of folks running for cover. For those of you with a different perspective, there is always impeachment, or you can take solace in knowing it can only last eight years. After all, we suffered through eight years of ineptitude...

Saturday, December 24, 2016

An Altered Meaning for Christmas

We have been in the drone business for almost a year and this will be our first Christmas as retailers. We are quickly finding out why retailers claim to make their biggest percentage of sales from Black Friday to Christmas eve. It has been difficult to get the traditional holiday tasks accomplished and keep up with the demands of the business. The difficulty is amplified because we refurbish store returns; so all of our drones have to be opened, evaluated, catalogued and finally repaired. We don't have a shop either and are doing this out of our 5th wheel RV. We have expanded slowly over the months; finally ordering a pallet load for the holidays, versus the boxes we had been getting. A pallet load of drones works out to approximately 140 - 150 drones; a daunting challenge, even for us. Today we will complete a five day marathon (out of the last seven) at our local flea market. Unfortunately, we do not have a storage space on the markets property, so we have to run by our storage locker and load and reload as needed. All in all it has been a rewarding experience. We have given and shared our products; the smile and gratitude we get make it so worthwhile, and also made money. That is success in business, in my opinion.

If; in all the hub bub, we neglected to wish you and yours a wonderful holiday season we apologize. We have done our best to keep in the spirit of the occasion and hope you have as well. Merry Christmas.