Monday, December 31, 2012

Happy New Year



DeBary, FL.

46 deg. overcast, no wind.

Forecast = Partly cloudy. High of 72F. Winds from the ENE at 5 to 15 mph shifting to the SE in the afternoon.

Hope all of you have a very safe and Happy New year. : )

Nothing much happened around here yesterday. Jim dumped my tanks, Linda did some laundry and both fooled around with the computers and watched football on TV.

I don't know if I"m supposed to say anything yet or not, but it looks like there's going to be some big changes coming in 2013. Jim and Linda have been doing something that they've asked me not to tell you about, but it looks like soon, they will.

Yeah, I know, it's mean to not tell you, but I really do need to respect their wishes.

You can be sure that you'll be the first to know when I get the go-ahead.

Did you know that the tradition of using a baby to signify the New Year was started by ancient Greeks around 600 B.C? They would carry a baby around in a basket to honor Dionysus, the God of Fertility and symbolize his annual rebirth.


Sunday, December 30, 2012

I'ts Been Awhile

DeBary, FL.

39 deg. clear, NW wind @ 2 mph.

Forecast = Clear. High of 57F. Winds from the North at 10 to 15 mph.


It's been awhile since I last posted, so I thought I'd better let you know that I'm still here in DeBary and everything is fine.

Jim and Linda haven't been doing much. Oh, they've been doing things like grocery shopping, going out to eat once in awhile and other normal day to day things. The park has been pretty quiet since Christmas and some of the people in the park are already starting to take down decorations.

The weather has been pretty strange here this year. We have been having cold fronts that come through the area about every 3 or 4 days. It drops the temperatures down into the 30's at night with highs in the 50's or 60's. Then in between the cold fronts, it warms up, so that the temperature is in the mid to upper 70's, (Even getting into the 80's at times), before another front, (with rain and sometime storms),  comes through and drops the temperatures back down again.

A lot of people are getting colds and are blaming it on the wide temperature swings, but I don't know if that's what's causing it or not.

They're having a New Years Eve party over at the clubhouse Monday night but Jim and Linda aren't planing on going. They both prefer to just stay home and watch a movie on TV or something.

I don't know if I'll be posting again before the New Year, so I want to wish all of you a safe and Happy New Year. Please stay safe and watch out for all the crazy drivers out there if you're going to be traveling.

Did you know that the Roman emperor Julius Caesar officially declared January 1 to be a New Year in 46 B.C? Romans worshiped God Janus who had two faces, one looking forward and the other looking backward. The month of January was named after this Roman God and it gave an idea to the emperor to establish January as a gate to the New Year.


Wednesday, December 26, 2012

A Very Good Christmas Day

DeBary, FL.

65 deg. mostly cloudy, NE wind @ 3 mph.

Forecast = Mostly cloudy with a chance of a thunderstorm and rain showers. High of 79F. Breezy. Winds from the South at 20 to 25 mph with gusts to 30 mph shifting to the WSW in the afternoon. Chance of rain 60%.

Hope all of you had a great Christmas Day!!!! : )  Jim and Linda had a great day!!!

In the morning, Joe called from Virginia Beach to wish Jim and Linda a Merry Christmas. He and his family were in the middle of opening presents and had just opened the package that Jim and Linda had sent up there.

Then, Laura called and said that she, Lindsey and the girls were coming over for a little while. In about 20 minutes, they arrived and everyone sat and talked for about 1/2 an hour.

After they left, Linda called her brother, (Glenn), who lives up in River Falls, WI. and her sister, (Nancy), who lives in Plainfield, IL. Both of them seem to be doing well and were having good holidays.

After that, Jim called Jeff out in Portland OR. but got their answering machine, so he left a message. Then, he called Mike in Apex, NC and talked to him for while. He, Gina the girls and Dillon were having a great time opening presents and enjoying the day.

Later in the afternoon, Jeff returned Jim's call and they talked for about 1/2 hour. He and Heather also had a good Christmas and were having a quiet day at home, enjoying each others company.

For dinner, Linda cooked one of Jim's favorite meals of cube steak, boiled potatoes and gravy. That along with the left over rice/vegetable dish that Linda had made to take to Marv and Inez's made for a very nice meal.

The rest of the day was spent snoozing playing with the computers and watching TV.

A very good Christmas.day!    ; )

Did you know that in 1947, Toys for Tots started making the holidays a little happier for children by organizing its first Christmas toy drive for needy youngsters?

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Christmas Eve

DeBary, FL

52 deg.scattered clouds no wind.

Forecast = Partly cloudy. High of 79F. Winds from the SSE at 5 to 10 mph.



I hope all of you are having a Merry Christmas today. Be sure to take a little time to remember the true meaning of the day.

Yesterday, Linda spent some of the day getting things ready to take to Laura and Lindsey's. Then about 4:45, Jim took all of the food that Linda had prepared and put it in the back of CLT and they left.

Soon after they got there, they opened presents. While they were opening the presents, Marv and Inez stopped by and then after all the presents were opened, they all ate roast beef sandwiches, crackers and chips with cheese, sausage, dip or salsa sauce on them.

Of course there were cookies and candies to finish off the meal with. ; )

About 8:00 Marv and Inez left and soon after Jim and Linda came back here to the park.

After returning and getting the food put away, Jim and Linda watched some of the Christmas specials on TV before going to bed.

Yesterday was a great day. Jim and Linda were able to spend some time with family and they received some neat presents. Today I think Jim and Linda are just going to kick back and enjoy each others company. They'll probably watch some TV and fool around with the computers, but much of the time will be spent just being together.

I hope all of you have a great Christmas.
Did you know that St. Nicholas was bishop of the Turkish town of Myra in the early fourth century? It was the Dutch who first made him into a Christmas gift-giver, and Dutch settlers brought him to America where his name eventually became the familiar Santa Claus.

Monday, December 24, 2012

Dinner At Marv And Inez's

DeBary, FL.

48 deg. clear, no wind.

Forecast = Partly cloudy. High of 75F. Winds from the SSW at 5 to 15 mph.


Jim and Linda headed over to Marv and Inez's house about 10:30 yesterday morning. Again, the meal that Inez put together for her family was just fabulous. There was ham, mashed potatoes and gravy, a couple kinds of vegetables, and of course, deserts like pies, cookies and puddings.

Both Jim and Linda said that there was more food than even that large family could possibly consume!!! : )

After eating, Marv and Inez's family exchanged gifts. Jim and Linda even received some small jars of jam that Inez had made and a scented candle.

It's so nice of Marv and Inez to include Jim and Linda in their family celebration. Jim and Linda really appreciate it and are very grateful. Thanks!!!

About 5:00 today, Jim and Linda will be heading over to Laura and Lindsey's house to exchange presents with them. It should be a fun evening.

If for some reason, I shouldn't post tomorrow, Jim, Linda, CLT and I want to wish all of you a very Merry Christmas!!!! Have a great day!!!! : )

Did you know that the Christmas season begins at sundown on 24th December and lasts through sundown on 5th January? For that reason, this season is also known as the Twelve Days of Christmas.




Sunday, December 23, 2012

Cookies and Christmas Plans

DeBary, FL.

31 deg. clear, no wind.

Forecast = Partly cloudy. High of 66F. Winds less than 5 mph.


Brrrrrr!!!!! 31 deg and it may go down another degree or so because as I write this, it's just starting to get light outside. At least they're forecasting warmer temperatures for today and tomorrow, so it should be nice for the Holiday.

Linda baked a whole bunch of cookies yesterday and then decorated them. She also put together a rice dish to take to Marv and Inez's today for a Christmas dinner. Some of the cookies are boxed up and ready to go and the rice dish will just have to heated up before Jim and Linda leave here around 10:30.

I imagine that Inez will have a big meal prepared again. She's a very good cook and is used to making large meals to feed Lindsey, his 3 brothers and their families. Inez's sister will probably be there too, so there'll be lots of people. Also, sometime, (either before or after the meal), Lindsey's family will exchange presents.

Then, because Laura has to work on Christmas Day, tomorrow evening, Jim, Linda, Marv and Inez will go to Laura and Lindsey's. That's when Jim and Linda will exchange gifts with Laura and Lindsey, Ashley and Anna.

Should be a fun couple of days!! : )

Did you know that Christmas trees are known to have been popular in Germany as far back as the sixteenth century. In England, they became popular after Queen Victoria's husband Albert, who came from Germany, made a tree part of the celebrations at Windsor Castle. In the United States, the earliest known mention of a Christmas tree is in the diary of a German who settled in Pennsylvania.




Saturday, December 22, 2012

The Weather and Prescription Refill Day

DeBary, FL.

35 deg. clear, light westerly breeze.

Forecast = Clear. High of 61F. Winds from the NW at 5 to 15 mph.


Wow!!!! That cold front that came through here yesterday sure changed the weather here in DeBary and most of Florida. The temperature right now  is 35 degrees and it's only supposed to get up to the low 60's during the day today!!

That's a long way from the 80 deg temperature that we had just 2 days ago.

Yesterday was prescription re-fill day again, so Jim and Linda headed over to Walgreen's about 11:00.  They were pretty busy so rather than wait, they decided to go back to pick them up later. About 1:30 they got a phone call from Walgreen's saying that the prescriptions were ready, but they could only do a partial re-fill on one of them.

Well, this has happened before, so Jim and Linda headed over there and picked up what they had ready. I really don't understand why there's always a problem with that one prescription. It's a common medication, but they never seem to have enough in stock to completely fill it. : (

It's really not a big deal though as Walgreen's is only about a mile and a half from here and is very easy to get to.

After picking up the prescriptions, Jim took CLT to a gas station and bought him a drink of 87 octane. It had been about a month since he had a drink and was getting pretty thirsty. ; )

Not a whole lot else happened yesterday. Jim and Linda headed over to Arby's for dinner, then they came back here and watched TV until bedtime.

Don't know of anything special happening today. Linda needs to get a few things ready to take to Marv and Inez's for dinner tomorrow but I don't think Jim has anything planned for today.

Did you know that  "It's a Wonderful Life" appears on TV more often than any other holiday movie?

Friday, December 21, 2012

So Far, So Good

DeBary, FL. (Or what used to be Debary)

47 deg. clear, light westerly winds.

Forecast = (is a forecast really necessary?) Partly cloudy in the morning, then clear. High of 59F. Breezy. Winds from the WNW at 15 to 20 mph.


Well, so far, so good. Since I'm still writing this post, the world must not have ended yet!!! I haven't heard about any major catastrophic events, and my compass is still pointing the right way, so I presume that the earth's magnetic fields haven't swapped from one pole to the other. I also haven't seen any spacecraft zooming through the sky, looking to pick up "believers", and I haven't heard anything about a planet streaking through space on it's way towards a collision with the earth.

Now, the day is still early and I suppose something could still happen, but I'm beginning to have my doubts. Could this be just one more goofy prediction like the ones that were making the news at the turn of the century?

You remember Y2K at the turn of the century don't you? Remember all the computers were going to crash? The electric power was going to go off and some were predicting that "Life as you knew it" was going to change forever?

Well, nothing happened then, and I'm thinking that nothing is going to happen now either.

So, if your reading this, either nothing happened or your a Space Alien who found this computer someplace in the galaxy and you've figured out how to read this blog that may have been published a bazillion years ago.

Here's something you may enjoy. it's titled Oops! 11 Failed Doomsday Predictions. It seems like people have been predicting the end of the earth for quite some time.

Did you know that in 1836, Alabama is the first state in the USA to declare Christmas a legal holiday and in 1907, Oklahoma became the last USA state to declare Christmas a legal holiday?






Thursday, December 20, 2012

Weather, Shopping and Spaghetti

DeBary, FL.

52 deg. clear, no wind.

Forecast = Partly cloudy. Fog early. High of 81F. Breezy. Winds from the South at 10 to 20 mph. Chance of rain 20%.


Yesterday was another beautiful day here in DeBary and today looks like it's going to be almost as nice. It's funny how you get used to nice warm days with temperatures in the 70's and 80's and then when the temperatures drop down into the 60's you think it's cold and not good weather anymore.

At the same time, if the folks up north had sunny weather with the temperatures in the 60's, (or even 50's), at this time of the year, they would be talking about how great the weather was.

Why am I writing about this?  Well, tonight there's going to be a cold front coming through this area and the forecast for tomorrow is for high temperatures in the lower 60's with lows getting down into the upper 30's or low 40's!!! The folks down here, (especially the ones who live down here all year), will be complaining  about how cold it is and will be wearing heavy coats, hats and gloves, where as the people up North would be thinking they're having a heat wave and be out and about in short sleeve shirts!!

I find it interesting how folks in different parts of the country look at different weather conditions. I guess it's all what your used to.  ; )

Linda washed a load of laundry yesterday morning and then in the afternoon she and Jim took CLT (Cute Little Truck), and went to the Winn Dixie grocery store to buy groceries that will be needed over the Christmas holiday.

CLT said that the parking lot was almost completely full and he saw lots of people going in and out of the store while he was there.

After getting the groceries put away, both Jim and Linda took little naps and then took CLT again and headed over to Laura and Lindsey's for a great spaghetti  dinner.  Lindsey's parents, (Marv and Inez) were there too so after eating, everyone sat around and talked for awhile.

It was around 8:00 by the time Jim and Linda came back here. The rest of the evening was spent watching TV, reading and surfing the Internet.

I think that today, Linda is planning on doing some more baking. She bought stuff to make cookies and cranberry bread yesterday. I don't know if Jim has any plans except to possibly put away some of the stuff on the patio and roll up my awnings. They're forecasting possible t-storms with possible high gusts of winds for tonight when the cold front comes through.

Did you know that  Silent Night was written in 1818, by an Austrian priest Joseph Mohr?  He was told the day before Christmas that the church organ was broken and would not be prepared in time for Christmas Eve. He was saddened by this and could not think of Christmas without music, so he wanted to write a carol that could be sung by choir to guitar music. He sat down and wrote three stanzas. Later that night the people in the little Austrian Church sang "Stille Nacht" for the first time.

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Decorations and Christmas Plans

DeBary, FL.

45 deg. clear, no wind.

Forecast = Clear. High of 77F. Winds less than 5 mph.


It's been pretty quiet around here lately. Oh, people have been out and about, doing things to get ready for the holidays but nothing much else happening. Jim's allergies have really been bothering him the last few days. He has to be very careful about what medications he takes for his allergies as many of the meds cause him some very undesirable side effects.  : (

He did go out one day and take some more photos of the decorations here in the park. These were taken just before it got dark, but they had already turned on the lights for the evening.





In this photo of me, you can see the little Christmas tree that is sitting on my dash.

The weather around here has been really nice for the most part. The temperatures have been in the 70's and even into the lower 80's a few days. Jim and Linda haven't been outside too much though because the mosquitoes have been really bad this year. If there isn't a pretty strong breeze blowing, it's almost impossible to sit outside without covering yourself with bug spray.

Plans are starting to come together for Christmas. As of now, it' looks like Jim and Linda will be going to Marv and Inez's (Lindsey's parents) house the Sunday before Christmas and then go to Laura and Lindsey's on Christmas Eve. As of right now, there are no plans for Christmas day. They're having a Christmas dinner here at the park. but neither Jim or Linda seem too interested in going to it.

Linda suggested that maybe they could go out to eat someplace, but they're finding out that most of the restaurants in the area will be closed.

Oh well, they can always stay here and eat peanut butter and jelly sandwiches.  ; )

Did you know that the first president to decorate the white house Christmas tree in the United States was Franklin Pierce?








Saturday, December 15, 2012

Checking In and Connecticut

DeBary, FL.

57 deg. fog, no wind.

Forecast = Partly cloudy with a chance of rain in the afternoon. High of 79F. Winds less than 5 mph. Chance of rain 20%.


Thought I'd check in so you wouldn't think I've forgotten about this blog. There's not a whole lot to tell you about. Laura and Lindsey have stopped by a couple times and then yesterday afternoon, Laura and Anna stopped by.  Anna's had Friday and the rest of the weekend off of work, so she came here, from Jacksonville, to see her mom, dad and sister.

Jim hasn't been feeling too well. The other day, he thought for sure that he was getting a bad cold, but the plugged up head, runny nose and sore throat only lasted for 1 day. Yesterday, the weather was kind of nasty, (by Florida standards), so Jim stayed pretty much inside.

Linda has been doing some reading and has been making TV mix and cranberry bread for the holidays.

Oh, I've got a little riddle for you.  How do you know that it's getting close to Christmas?

They are advertising the "Clapper" and the "Chia  Pet" on TV!!!!

OK, I just have to make a comment on the horrific situation up in Connecticut. It's on everyone's minds and it just can't be ignored.

I know that I'm not the smartest RV in the park so maybe that's why I can't figure something out about all of this. You see, on TV, they're saying that the young man that shot all the children and adults stole the guns from his mother.

Now, what I can't understand is what was the mother doing with those types of guns? Especially the assault rifle!!!! I could understand a hand gun for protection but not the others.

Hmmmmmm!!! Maybe I'm missing something?

Don't know what's going on here today. I heard Jim and Linda talking about maybe going out for breakfast so maybe they'll do that.

Please keep all the people up in Connecticut who are suffering through this terrible situation in your thoughts and prayers. It's got to be just horrible for the families and friends of the victims.





Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Storms and All Presents Shipped

DeBary, FL.

68 deg. overcast, no wind.

Forecast = Mostly cloudy with thunderstorms and rain showers. High of 84F. Winds from the South at 5 to 10 mph shifting to the WNW in the afternoon. Chance of rain 80%.


So far, the storms down here in Florida have missed the area I'm in. A couple days ago there was a tornado touchdown about 25 miles from here with about 30 homes being damaged, but nothing here but a lot of rain.

I think I told you that Linda had finished wrapping all the presents. Well yesterday, Jim and Linda got them all boxed up in those "if it fits it ships" boxes. Then it was off to the Post Office to get them sent on their way!!  Both Jim and Linda said that it was a big relief to have that project finished. ; ) 

Now, Linda can concentrate on baking cookies, making TV mix and getting things ready for Christmas.

They're still putting up more Christmas Decorations here in the park. They've decorated the office and the clubhouse, the bridge going over the spill-way between the pond and the river, and have put up other decorations throughout the park.

Very nice!!! : )

Laura and Lindsey were out and about so they stopped by for while yesterday, Jeff called from Portland OR to let Jim and Linda know that they had received their first package and Joe also called from Virginia Beach for the same reason. Both seemed to be doing well and are really busy getting ready for the holidays.

Don't have much else to write about, so I'll let you go. If anything of any importance happens, I'll be sure to let you know right away. ; )

A Point to Ponder : You can tell a lot about a person by the way he/she handles these three things: a rainy day, making a wrong turn with an RV, and tangled Christmas tree lights.


Monday, December 10, 2012

Linda Goes To Jacksonville and Electrical Research

DeBary, FL.

59 deg. light fog, no wind.

Forecast = Mostly cloudy with a chance of rain in the afternoon. High of 88F. Winds from the SSW at 5 to 15 mph. Chance of rain 40%.

Hasn't been a whole lot happening around here lately. Linda has been working on getting the presents ready to send. She had quite a bit more sewing to do than I had thought, but is finally finished with that and has been busy wrapping them up. That is, except yesterday!!

So, "what did she do yesterday", you ask?

Well, after lunch, Laura came by and picked her up and they they drove up to Jacksonville to see Anna!! : )  You see, Laura needed to go up there to take some papers and new license plates to Anna, so she asked Linda if she wanted to ride along. Needless to say, Linda jumped at the chance to see Anna and her apartment.

And besides that, Linda got to ride in Laura's new car!!!!

The trip up there went well, and after visiting for a little while, the 3 of them decided to go to a movie. (I think it was that new Hobbit movie). Then after the movie, they headed to a Pizza place called Al's, where they had a very good pizza and talked some more. Then after taking Anna back to her apartment, Laura and Linda headed back here.

It was about 9:00 when they got back here, so it was a long day, but Linda had a great time. ; )

While Linda was gone, Jim did a little research of my 120 vote electrical system. You see, he's been trying to figure out which outlets are on which circuit breakers. The breakers are vaguely marked and the only real way to find out which breaker controlled which outlet was to shut each individual breaker off and then go around and find the outlets didn't have power.

Well, I suppose that they had a reason to wire the outlets like they did, but many of the outlets that Jim and Linda use the most and have the heaviest loads on them, were all on the same 20 amp breaker, and they're not even in the same area inside of me!!!! So, some of the things that were plugged into those outlets were moved to different ones that are on a different circuit.

Jim says that he's amazed that they weren't tripping that breaker with all the things that were running off of it!!!

Oh, and Jim also found out that every outlet inside of me is hooked up to my inverter. That means that if the power goes off, anything plugged into me will operate off of my batteries. This is a good thing except if a heavy load like a space heater is plugged in, it will drain the power out of my batteries pretty fast.

Jim also took a photo of my little Christmas tree. It's not the best photo in the world, but you can see how it sits on my dash. I also have some wreaths and bows in different places inside of me, so I look pretty festive. :  )

Did you know that on this date in 1817 - Mississippi was admitted to the Union as the 20th American state?



Friday, December 7, 2012

Dinner At Laura's and Inside Decorations

DeBary, FL.

64 deg. overcast, light breeze out of the East @ 3 mph.

Forecast = Partly cloudy with a chance of rain. High of 82F. Winds from the NE at 5 to 10 mph shifting to the ESE in the afternoon. Chance of rain 20%.


Laura stopped by for awhile Wednesday morning. She's had company staying at her house for the last few days, so we hadn't seen her for awhile.  Jim had gone to the Post Office earlier and had picked up some of those Priority boxes, so while she was here, she helped Jim and Linda package up some Christmas presents to be sent off to family.

She was here for a couple hours but before she left, she invited Jim and Linda over to her house for dinner and tentative plans were made for her to come back on Thursday, to help decorate the inside of me.

About 4:30 Wednesday afternoon, Jim and Linda took CLT (Cute Little Truck), and headed over to Laura and Lindsey's. Earlier, Laura had put some beef and gravy in a crock pot and after letting it slow cook for a good part of the day, it made for a great dish when served over rice. That, along with some sweet corn and some hot-out-of-the oven chocolate chip cookies for desert, made for a very tasty meal. ; )

About 11:30 yesterday morning, Laura came out here to the park and helped Jim and Linda decorate the inside of me. It really wasn't hard to do and it didn't take very long, but like I said the other day, it's become kind of a tradition for Laura and/or the girls to help, and everyone seems to have a lot of fun doing it. ; )

Today, Jim needs to go up to the office and pay another month's rent for my site. (Can you believe that we've been her for a whole month already? ) Then, because there are a couple boxes of presents ready to sent, he wants to go to the Post Office to mail them.

Linda still has a few more presents to get ready, so I imagine she'll be working on that today. Hopefully she'll be able to get them finished and wrapped soon so that they can be mailed. Once they're mailed, the pressure will be off and she can relax.

A Point to Ponder : We cannot change the direction of the wind ... but we can adjust our sails.








Wednesday, December 5, 2012

St Johns River

DeBary, FL.

59 deg. overcast, E. wind @ 5 mph.

Forecast = Partly cloudy with rain showers in the afternoon. High of 79F. Winds from the NE at 5 to 10 mph. Chance of rain 20%.

Since I really don't have much to write about, I thought I'd post some photos of the St. Johns River that Jim has taken over the last few days. The River runs right along side of the Highbanks Marina and Campresort and is accessible from a few different spots in the park.

These first two are taken from a small "public" area between the sites that are located on the river. The first one is the view looking South.

The view looking North.

Highbanks Road dead ends at the River at the South edge of the park, and if you follow it all the way to the river instead of turning into the park, you come to the boat launch and the marina.

Looking off to the right from the road, you'll see all the boats parked at the Marina

The next 2 photos are taken from the boat launch area. The first one is the view looking North,

and this one, the view looking South.

From the Marina, you can rent a pontoon boat or you can take a guided tour of the River. Jim and Linda have never done either one because it's pretty expensive, but I hear that the river is quite scenic.

Linda has been busy, busy, busy!!! She's pretty much finished with the sewing and embroidery part of getting the presents ready and has now been busy wrapping  them. Soon they'll all be ready to be boxed up and sent to family.  : )

Jim has just been trying to stay our of her way and to help out whenever he can. Today, he's planning on going to the Post Office to pick up some of those Priority boxes, ("If it fits it ships"), and then he and Linda will start packing the presents into them.

I'll be glad when they're finally shipped. Right now, I have presents stacked everywhere inside of me!!!

Did you know that the St. Johns River  is the longest river in Florida?  It's 310 miles long and is one of the few rivers in the United States that runs from the South to the North.




Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Looking Festive

DeBary, FL.

54 deg light fog, no wind.

Forecast = Partly cloudy. Fog early. High of 79F. Winds from the North at 10 to 15 mph shifting to the South in the afternoon.

Laura has been very busy lately so she hasn't had time to come over to help decorate the inside of me, but Jim dug out the outside decorations and now has me looking festive. ; )

Also, if you look real close, you may be able to see the Christmas tree on the passengers side of my dash. There's no lights or decorations on it yet, but it's secured in place.


In my last post, I talked about the people here in the park decorating the little "island" in the road. Well, Jim took some photos of some of the decorations so I thought I'd post a few here.



I'm hoping that Jim will go out one of these nights and try to get a few photos of these decorations when they're lit up. If he does, I'll post a few of them.

Not a whole lot going on around here. Except for presents for each other, Jim and Linda have all the Christmas shopping done. Linda has been very busy doing some embroidery work on some of the presents, sewing on some of the others and then wrapping them when she's finished.  And, she and Jim have also ordered a few presents on line and had them shipped directly to the recipients.  (This is the first year that they've done that).

Jim's been riding his bike some, talking to the neighbors and helping Linda when he can.

Did you know that on this date in  1918 - U.S. President Woodrow Wilson set sail for France to attend the Versailles Peace Conference? Wilson became the first chief executive to travel to Europe while in office.

Saturday, December 1, 2012

Laura's New Car, Park Decorations and Ashley Stops By

DeBary, FL.

53 deg. partly cloudy, no wind.

Forecast = Partly cloudy. Fog early. High of 75F. Winds from the NE at 5 to 15 mph.


Thursday, Jim did take CLT to get his drink of 87 octane on the way to the DeLand Truck Center where he picked up 2 valve stem extensions for my inside dual tires. When he returned, he installed them and now he should be able to check and air up those tires without any problems. : )

Laura called Thursday evening. She was all excited because she and Lindsey had just picked up her new car from the dealership and was wondering if Jim and Linda would like to meet them for coffee someplace and to check out the car!!! Jim suggested Gram's and since that was acceptable to everyone, Jim and Linda took CLT and headed over there. When they got there, they found out that Laura had called Marv and Inez and they were coming to Gram's too!!

What a great surprise!!!! Not only did Jim and Linda get to see Laura's new car, they also had a chance to visit with Marv and Inez too!!!!

Her new car is a brand new 2012 Buick. (don't remember the model), and is it ever a beauty!! The reason I know it's a beauty is because yesterday, Laura stopped by here for about an hour on her way to the grocery store.  It's got all the gadgets you could think of and it's so shiny that I could see my reflection in it!!! ; )

Maybe Jim can take a photo of it one of these days so I can show it to you.

Oh, they're starting to put up the Christmas decorations here at Highbanks. There's this small "island" of grass and trees in the main road that goes past the end of the street I'm on and every year they put up lots of decorations on it. It's looking real nice and last night they even had it all lit up!! : )

Ashley stopped by for a little while after she got off work yesterday evening. No special reason, just wanted to stop by and visit for awhile.

It's so nice to be in a park so close to Laura, Lindsey and Ashley. When they have a little time, they just pop by for awhile to visit. : )

Did you know that on this date in 1835 - Hans Christian Andersen published his first book of fairy tales?


Thursday, November 29, 2012

Whew!!!

DeBary, FL.

51 deg. clear, N. breeze @ 3 mph.

Forecast = Partly cloudy. High of 73F. Winds from the NE at 10 to 15 mph.


Whew!!! Jim and Linda didn't win that Power Ball thing that everyone has been talking about!!! You see, I'm sure if they had won it, they would have had many changes in their lives and one of them, especially with that kind of money, probably would have been to purchase a new Motor Home that has all the latest and greatest  gadgets on it. And, you know where that would have left me,  ,  ,  ,  sitting in an RV lot somewhere waiting for someone to come along and buy me!!!!! : (

Penny came to visit me again. Laura brought her out here to the park for about an hour yesterday morning. At one point while Jim , Linda and Laura were sitting outside under my awning, she tried to get under me, but Laura pulled her back out with the leash that she had attached to her harness. Laura said that it probably wouldn't be good for her to be under me because she'd probably get really dirty. ; )

After lunch, Jim and Linda headed over to the Mall area in Sanford and did some more Christmas shopping. The way it sounds, they found most of what they were looking for and now they only have a few more gifts to buy.

Oh, while Laura and Penny were here, I heard Jim ask Laura if she though that she would have time to come over sometime to help decorate me for Christmas. She said that she thought she would and would let Jim and Linda know when she could come. I really don't have too many decorations, but it has become kind if a tradition for Laura, and sometimes one or both of the girls, to help decorate. It's just kind of a fun thing that they've enjoyed over the years. ; )

Don't know what's happening today. I do know that CLT needs a drink of 87 octane real soon and Jim wants to go back to the DeLand Truck Center to see if those tire valve stem extensions have come in yet. Linda bought some sewing stuff when they were out shopping yesterday, so she'll be wanting to get started on those projects because they involve the Christmas presents.

A Point to Ponder : People will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.


Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Short Update

DeBary, FL.

57 deg. clear, NW breeze at 3 mph.

Forecast = Partly cloudy. Fog early. High of 73F. Winds from the North at 5 to 15 mph.


Not a whole lot to report on this morning. Sunday was mostly a TV/Computer day here. The weather was nice, but Jim didn't go outside much, he just watched some of the football games instead.

Linda's still working on her Family Tree program. You see, when we were back in Illinois and she had free wi-fi, she downloaded and saved a whole bunch of files and census reports off of the Internet and now she's pouring through them and gleaning a whole bunch of information.

Jim called his son, Jeff, (who lives out in Portland OR. ),  in the afternoon. It sounds like he and Heather are doing well and had a very nice Thanksgiving with Heather's family. I don't really know what Jim and Jeff talked about, but they were on the phone for about an hour!  ; )

Monday, Jim and Linda took CLT (Cute Little Truck), and went Christmas shopping. They came back with 3 bags of gifts, so I presume they had pretty good luck finding what they wanted to buy.

Yesterday, (Tuesday), most of the day was spent just doing odd jobs around here. Nothing of great importance.

So, as you can see, not much happening, just doing normal things.

Laura called last night and she's planning on coming here to the park this morning. Don't know just when, but she said she'd call before she came. Then sometime today, Jim will probably dump my tanks.

Jim and Linda have more Christmas Shopping to do and I think they're planning on doing that tomorrow.

So, that's what has been happening. Not much, but I thought I'd give you a short update.

A Point to Ponder : Don't worry about what people think, they don't do it very often.




Sunday, November 25, 2012

Penny!! knock knock knock, Penny!! knock knock knock, Penny!! knock knock knock

DeBary, FL

41 deg. clear, no wind.

Forecast = Clear. High of 70F. Winds from the North at 5 to 10 mph.  


Let me introduce you to Penny!!! Penny is a puppy that Ashley and Travis, (Ashley's friend), just adopted from an animal shelter.

They got her just before Thanksgiving and when they found her, she was less than a day away from being euthanized, as she had been at the pound for a long time. 

She had been found wandering around in a farmers field and was very thin and sick. She's still pretty thin but Ashley says that she's gaining weight every day. They also have medications that they give her every day to cure her other health problems.

She seems like a very nice dog. She's not wild and crazy like some pups are, and she's already learned to sit on command. : )

I don't know if Penny was aware of Thanksgiving, but if she was, I'll bet she's really thankful that Travis and Ashley found her and adopted her. : )

Linda is doing fine. The "bug" she had only lasted that one day, and it doesn't look like she passed it on to anyone else. Yesterday evening, she ate a normal meal and said that everything tasted good.

Did you know that in the United States there is no government run organization that provides oversight or regulation of the various shelters on a national basis? However, many individual states do regulate shelters within their jurisdiction. One of the earliest comprehensive measures was the Georgia Animal Protection Act of 1986. The law was enacted in response to the inhumane treatment of companion animals by a pet store chain in Atlanta



Saturday, November 24, 2012

Thanksgiving Update

DeBary, FL

46 deg. clear, no wind.

Forecast = Partly cloudy. Fog early. High of 72F. Winds from the NW at 10 to 15 mph.


About 1:30 Thanksgiving morning, Jim and Linda took CLT and headed over to Marv and Inez's house. Ashley, her friend Travis and Anna were already there and soon the rest of the family came. Before they ate, Jim got this photo of Lindsey, Laura, Ashley and Anna goofing around out on the deck behind the house.

As you can see, the weather was almost prefect with the temperatures in the mid 70's and plenty of sunshine.



a By a little after noon, everyone was enjoying a great Thanksgiving dinner with turkey, ham and all the trimmings. ; )

After they sat and talked for awhile, Linda started feeling like she had an upset stomach. Soon it was decided that she and Jim would head back here as she wasn't feeling any better. By the time they returned here to the park she was quite sick and spent a good part of the rest of the day in my bathroom.

Of course the first thing that comes to mind was food poison, but no one else got sick and she was running a fever, which probably means that she picked up a "bug" someplace. : (

Anyway, by Friday morning, she was feeling better and spent a good part of the day sleeping. So far, Jim has been feeling fine and it looks like he may have dodged the bullet.

Nothing much happened yesterday. Linda was recuperating so Jim spent some time outside, but stayed pretty close in case she needed something. 

So, the holiday was sort of a "mixed bag". A great meal with great people but ending with Linda getting sick. Jim and Linda had to leave Marv and Inez's pretty quick but want them to know that they really enjoyed the meal the the time that they were able to be there with them.

Thank you so much!!!!

Did you know that the Macy's Thanksgiving Day parade began in 1924 with 400 employees marching off from Convent Avenue and 145th Street in New York City? During this time the parade was accompanied not with the oversized balloons of our favorite cartoon characters, but with live animals borrowed from the Central Park Zoo -- from camels to elephants.




Thursday, November 22, 2012

Happy Thanksgiving From Florida

DeBary, FL

49 deg clear, no wind.

Forecast = Clear. High of 70F. Breezy. Winds from the North at 15 to 20 mph with gusts to 30 mph.

Jim, Linda, CLT and I would like to wish all of you a safe and happy Thanksgiving!!!!  Hope all of you have a great day!!! : )

Jim and Linda are again invited to Marv and Inez's, (Lindsey's parents), house in DeLand for a Thanksgiving dinner today. They'll be leaving here around 10:30 so they have plenty of time to get there to visit for awhile and help out in any way they can before the dinner is ready at about noon.

It's so nice of Marv and Inez to include Jim and Linda. They'll already have a full house with all of their family  but they insist that Jim and Linda come for both the Thanksgiving and Christmas Holidays.

There hasn't been a whole lot happening here at the park. People are getting ready for the Holidays and are pretty busy. Today, they're having a Thanksgiving potluck dinner over at the Clubhouse for those who don't have family in the area. The park furnishes the turkey and ham and then everyone who attends brings "a dish to pass".

I'm sure they'll have a good turnout as many of the folks here in the park are far away from their families.

Did you know that an estimated 46 million turkeys are eaten on Thanksgiving?


Monday, November 19, 2012

Full-Timing? Continued

DeBary, FL

56 deg. overcast, N. wind @ 5 mph.

Forecast = Partly cloudy. High of 72F. Breezy. Winds from the NNW at 15 to 20 mph shifting to the West in the afternoon.


Welcome back!


Have you been thinking about yesterday's blog? Good!!!! That was one of the main reasons I wrote it.

If your a seasoned Full-Timer, (more than a couple years), you probably have come across most of the people I talked about. You've also pretty much learned the ropes and have decided if it's the lifestyle you want to live for a long time.

If you're new to full-timing, or in the planning stages, no matter how much you think you know about the lifestyle, you still have a lot to learn!!  Here are a few things you will learn.

Full-Timing is not for everyone!!

Many people must have a place to come back to that they call home. Some can't be away from family for long periods of time and some find out that it's just not for them.

Full-Timing is not like being on vacation 365 days a year!!

If you try to travel and sight-see like you did when you were on vacation, you will definitely "burn out"!! You will also wear out that RV, dashing from one place to another, and burn a whole lot of fuel and spend a bunch of money in the process. It takes awhile to get used to the slower pace of full-timing and some people never manage to slow down. Jim had a lot of problems keeping his speed down when traveling, so he finally set the cruise control for 5 mph under the speed limit and forced himself to keep his foot off of the accelerator.

RVs don't last forever!!

Even though you take very good care of your RV, doing all the maintenance required, keeping it clean and keeping it in good working order, it will finally wear out. RVs are very durable, but they really take a beating on some of our Nations roads. Appliances start to fail, (some of them are very expensive) awnings wear out, furnace heat exchangers crack and sometime or other, you will have a water leak that does some damage. In  the end, you will consider buying a different RV.

You will break down on the road!!

You may full-time for many years without serious problems, but sooner or later, you will need that roadside assistance you've been paying for all those years.

You will have an accident!!

Yep, no matter how careful you are, you will have an accident. It may not be your fault, but the odds are that  sometime, your RV will get damaged.

More than likely, you will not full-time forever.

I don't remember where I read it and I don't have any figures to back it up, but at one time I read that most people who go full-timing will go back to living in a stix and brix house within 4 years. Jim says that he believes that is the case because most of the full-timers he and Linda have met throughout the years have gone back to having a house as their main residence.

Now, I'm not telling you this to discourage you from going full-timing. Full-Timing can be one of the most wonderful lifestyles that you could ever imagine!!!!

First of all, there's the freedom!!!

Once you get rid of all that excess "stuff" and move into your RV, there is a great feeling of a huge load being lifted off of your shoulders. It may take awhile, but eventually you'll realize that you're not accountable to anyone but yourself. You can go where you want, when you want, you don't have to be on any kind of schedule if you don't want to be, and, if you so choose, you don't even have to tell anyone where your are!!

If you take your time, you'll see some of the most amazing sights. The beautiful rocky shores of the NE, the "keys" of Florida, the white sands of the gulf, the Smoky and Rocky mountains, the deserts in the SW, the Pacific Ocean coastline and the forests of the NW. And, if your real adventurous, the indescribable sights of Alaska!!

All of the National Parks are worth visiting. Death Valley, Yosemite, Yellowstone, The Grand Canyon, Arches, The Great Smoky Mountain or the Rocky Mountain National Parks, just to name a few that come to mind.

You can follow US 1 from Canada to Florida, the Mighty Mississippi from Minnesota to the Gulf of Mexico, US 50 from the the East Coast to the West Coast, or just wander wherever the road your on takes you.  

 Or, you can just find a CG or RV Park that you like and stay there as long as you want. ; )

If you pick your Campgrounds carefully and don't have any major breakdowns, you can Full-Time for less money that it would cost you to live in a stix and brix home. Even with the high price of gas and diesel you can still travel a lot and maintain a budget.

So, is Full-Timing right for you??? Only you can determine that, and you may not know until you've actually tried it. If you're traveling with someone else, both of you have to really want to do it.

You have to really "like" the person that your living with. Many times you will be with them in your RV 24/7 for long periods of time. If you don't get along now, it won't change when you hit the road!!

Everything will not be "peaches and cream"!!! There will be problems and you can't run away from any problems you had when living in a house. They will follow you.

If Full Timing is something you really think you would like to do, go for it!!!! If you don't, you'll always have regrets and wonder what you've missed. Full-timing is not permanent, you can go back.

I guess the main reason that I'm telling you this is because throughout the years, both Jim and Linda have met folks who are planning on going full-time but have no idea what they're getting into. They think their RV will go on forever without problems, they don't seem to realize that every day is not exciting and many days will be spent just sitting in an RV Park or Campground and just doing normal day to day things. And, even though your house will have wheels, you can't always be where the weather is perfect.

Did you know that there is no evidence that turkey was eaten at the first Thanksgiving, a three-day meal shared between the pilgrims and Wamponoag tribe in 1621? It is more likely that they ate venison and a lot of seafood.










Sunday, November 18, 2012

Full-Timing?

DeBary, FL.

61 deg. overcast, NW wind @ 10 mph.

Forecast = Partly cloudy. High of 72F. Winds from the West at 10 to 15 mph shifting to the North in the afternoon.



I know that some of you reading this blog are full-timers like Jim and Linda are. Some of you want to go full-timing in the future and are working your way towards that dream. Others are thinking about the lifestyle and a few of you would never think about giving most of your possessions away, selling your house and moving into an RV.

So, what possesses people to get rid of almost everything that they've worked so hard to accumulate throughout their lives, move into a little box on wheels, say good-bye to family and friends that they've had for years and go full-timing?

I'm sure the answer is different for everyone, but here's a few of the reasons.

Some people are wanderers and just can't stay in one place for any length of time. It's easy to understand why they would want to go full-timing. Others are just plain fed up with the "rat race" they've been living and have decided that there just has to be a better way to live. Some have children who have grown up and moved to different parts of the country so the full-timing lifestyle is a good way to travel to different locations to see them.  And, I think some people have always wanted to travel and see the country and have decided that full-timing would be a good way to do it. There are also a few that are trying to run away from problems that they are having while living in a stix and brix house.

Now, "on the other side of the coin",  ,  ,  ,  Why don't some people feel that they can or want to full-time?

Well, here again, there are are all kinds of reasons but a couple of the reasons I hear the most is "I don't want to be away from my family", or "I couldn't possibly get rid of all of my "stuff" and move into an RV."
Some folks say they would "love" to go full-timing but come up with all kinds of reasons why they can't. They feel that they don't have enough money, they don't want to be "homeless", they can't because of health reasons, or they say that they're afraid to make such a big change in their lives.

Of course there are many more reasons on "both sides of the coin" but these seem to be the main ones.

So, where am I going with this?

Well, being that this post is getting pretty long already, you'll just have to wait for my next post to find out!!! : )

I promise that I won't keep you in suspense too long. ; )

A Point to Ponder :   The 50-50-90 rule: Anytime you have a 50-50 chance of getting something right, there's a 90% probability you'll get it wrong.


Saturday, November 17, 2012

I'm Still Here and Some Ranting

DeBary, FL.

58 deg. overcast, N. wind @ 3 mph.

Forecast = Mostly cloudy with a chance of rain. High of 77F. Winds from the NNE at 10 to 15 mph. Chance of rain 40%.


I'm still here!!!! Just nothing much to write about.

The weather has been OK, but we've had a few drizzly days where the sun didn't shine and it was almost foggy a good part of the day. The temperature has only been in the 60's, so along with the dampness, it felt pretty chilly. 

Jim has been able to get a short ride in on his bike every day and he says that his legs are getting more used to the peddling. Linda has been working on some embroidery projects and entering data into the Family Tree program. Thursday, Jim and Linda took CLT and headed to DeLand Truck Center to see if they had some tire valve stem extensions to use on my inside dual tires.

They didn't have any, but have some on order, so he'll go back in a week or so to see if they've got anything he can use to make checking and inflating my tires easier.

On the way back here, they stopped at Auto Zone to pick up some new wiper blades for CLT, and then stopped at Gram's Kitchen for breakfast. : )

Yesterday afternoon, Laura and Lindsey stopped by for awhile. The weather was pretty decent so Jim and Lindsey sat outside and talked while Laura and Linda spent time together inside.

Have any of you been bothered by all the Christmas adds that they've had on TV already? They've been running them in this area since before Halloween!! They don't seem to have bothered Linda much, but both Jim and I don't like them this early.

Also, how about some of the major department stores plans to be open on Thanksgiving Day!!!! Some of the store spokespeople are saying that the customers are demanding that they are open so that they can get an early start!!!!

Baloney!!!!! They're just trying to justify opening on a holiday so they can make more money!!! Some of the employees are raising a fuss about working on Thanksgiving and I don't blame them, they want to be home with their families!!!! It's bad enough that the great folks who are Firemen, Policemen, Health Care Providers and others who provide essential services have to work, but they knew that they'd have to work the holidays when they applied for the job.

Well, I guess that's enough Ranting for today. I'll quit before I get myself into too much trouble. ; )

Did you know that on this date in 1913, the steamship Louise became the first ship to travel through the Panama Canal? 


Tuesday, November 13, 2012

A Few CG Photos, Ashley And Anna and Gram's

DeBary, FL.

Sunday, 11-11-12

Sunday was a really nice day with temperatures in the mid- 70's, fairly low humidity and just enough wind to keep the mosquitoes away. Since it was so nice, Jim took a few short rides on his bike and on one of those rides, he took his camera along and took a few photos of the park.

This first on is of the entrance to the park as you turn off of Highbanks Rd. Remember, you can click on these photos to enlarge them if you want to.

As you come through the entrance, you'll see the office off to your right. There was a 5th wheel sitting in front of the office when Jim took this photo, so he didn't get a real good photo of it.

A little past the office, you come to a small bridge. This photo is of the lake off to your right from the bridge. It's strictly catch and release and kids have a good time fishing here.

This is a view of the park just after crossing the bridge. There are many "park" model homes here and quite a  a few travel trailers that have been permanently placed on the sites with screen rooms or car ports built onto the sides of them.

From what I understand, Jim and Linda first stayed here about 15 years ago, and at that time there were a lot of junky RVs in the park, the park was run down, the staff couldn't care less about the campers and was not a good place to stay.

Since then, there have been many improvements. The junky units were removed from the park, the electricity has been up-graded, the sewer system revamped the management changed and 24 hour security people employed.

It's still an old park and the sites are quite small, but in general, is a very nice and friendly park to stay at. And, with security people roaming the park on golf carts 24 hours a day, it's very safe too.

OK, back to the photos.

As you travel down the street shown in the above photo you'll come to the very nice Clubhouse on the right. It's very nice and they have all kinds of activities there including potluck dinners, breakfasts, ice cream socials and holiday dinners. There's also a game room in the clubhouse and a very nice laundry.

One street past the clubhouse, you'll come to the side street that I'm on. There's a permanent unit on the corner and I'm right next to it. As I said, the sites here are quite small, but Mike and Anne. (Mike is one of the security people), who live in the permanent unit are very nice and the folks in the 5th wheel to my right are also nice

It a quiet park with quite a few activities. Most of the people are very friendly and have been coming here for years. Some stay here year round but I'd guess that probably about 75% of the people just spend the winter months here.

After dinner Sunday evening, Laura, Ashley and Anna stopped by for awhile. It sure was good to see them again. They stayed and visited for a couple hours and then headed back Laura's as both Laura and Ashley had to work on Monday.

Monday, 11-12-13

Not a whole lot happened yesterday. Linda did some embroidery work and worked on her Family Tree Program, Linda has some sewing projects she wants to complete for Christmas presents so Jim got out the extra leaf for my kitchen table and after cleaning it and the table, installed the leaf so that Linda will have a larger work space for her sewing machine. Jim also took a few short rides on his bike, talked to the neighbors and took a nap in the afternoon. ; )

For dinner they headed over to Gram's Kitchen in Orange City. Both Jim and Linda said that it felt just like they had just been there a week or so ago instead of about 9 months. The same waitress waited on them and the food was excellent as usual. : )  

Did you know that November is "National Pomegranate Month"?






Sunday, November 11, 2012

Veterans Day, Groceries, More Set-UP, Laura And Lindsey

DeBary, FL

 Sunday, 11-11-12

57 deg. mostly cloudy, no wind

Forecast = Partly cloudy. High of 81F. Breezy. Winds from the NNW at 10 to 20 mph shifting to the South in the afternoon.


Please take a moment today to honor all the veterans, past and present. If it wasn't for them, our lives would be so much different.

Below you'll find a quick summary of what's been happening since I last posted. Jim and Linda are slowly settling down into normal day to day living, and I'm sure after we've been here even longer, there'll be less and less to write about.

I'm also sure some of what I'll be writing about in the next few months will be very boring, but they want me to keep posting as much as possible so that in the future, they can go back and see what happened while we were here.  

Today, we're looking forward to seeing Ashley and Anna. Anna is here in DeBary for a few days, (She works and lives over by Jacksonville), and yesterday, Laura told Linda that they want to stop by for a little while.

I'm really looking forward to their visit! : )
______________

Thursday, 11/8/12

About the only thing worth mentioning on Thursday was that as soon as Linda got up and had her breakfast, she and Jim took CLT and headed to the Winn Dixie Grocery store which is only about a mile from here. They were gone for quite awhile so I figured that they were buying a lot of groceries, and I was right, they brought back all kinds of groceries!!!!  : O

They did get them all stashed away inside of me though, so I guess it's OK. ; )
____________

Friday, 11/9/12

Friday, as soon as it warmed up, (it was 41 degrees at 7:00 AM), Jim went outside and got his bike out of the back of CLT. Then, he put out my awnings and tied the main awning down with the straps and bungee cords. When he was finished with that, he removed the tow bar off of the front of CLT and put it underneath me on some small boards, so it doesn't sit right on the ground.

While he was doing that, Linda was doing laundry and working on her Family Tree Program.

You've probably noticed that I haven't mentioned anything about Laura and Lindsey since we've been here. Well, until Monday, they didn't know that we would be arriving a week earlier than planned, and they had already planned a camping trip for Wednesday, Thursday and Friday. So, until Friday afternoon, they were on their camping trip, (with their pop-up trailer), at one of Florida's State Parks.

Friday afternoon, they called and said that they were on their way back home and wanted to know if it would be OK for them to come over around 5:00. They also said that they'd stop by and pick up a pizza for dinner on their way out here to the RV Park.

Well, of course Linda and Jim said that the plan sounded great and told them to come on out here as soon as they could.

So, around 5:00 they pulled up in front of me and then after h and h (hugs and handshakes), they all sat down, enjoyed a very good pizza and talked and talked until around 8:00.

It sure was good to see Laura and Lindsey again. It's been almost a year since we've seen them and a lot of things have happened since then.
_____________

Saturday 11-10-12

After airing his bicycle tires up, Jim took a ride around the park. He hasn't ridden it since we were in Rantoul in September, so he didn't go too far on the first day. He says that he's going to gradually increase the distance to get his legs back in shape again.

In the afternoon, Laura stopped by again. Didn't want anything, just stopped by to chat for awhile. I think she misses her mom.  ; )

For dinner, Jim cooked a couple pork chops on the grill and Linda cooked some cauliflower on my stove. 

A Quick Fact. : Veterans Day is not to be confused with Memorial Day; Veterans Day celebrates the service of all U.S. military veterans, while Memorial Day is a day of remembering the men and women who died while serving.


Thursday, November 8, 2012

Shopping, A New Friend and Highbanks

DeBary, FL.

42 deg. clear, no wind.

Forecast = Clear. High of 70F. Winds from the NNW at 10 to 15 mph shifting to the East in the afternoon.


As soon as Linda got up and had her breakfast Tuesday morning, Jim and Linda took CLT (Cute Little Truck), and headed for Jacksonville. You see, by accident, quite a few years ago, they had found a shoe store in a shopping center on the North side of Jacksonville.  It's called Rack Room Shoes and they sell all kinds of shoes.

And, they carry shoes in Jim's size, (14). : )

The soles of one of Jim's pair of shoes had split.  So being that we were in the area, they headed over there and ended up buying Jim 2 pair, since the second pair was 1/2 price.  : )

By about 12:30 they were back to the CG.

Oh, I want you to see my new little buddy that came into Kelly's Monday evening.


He's brand new and lives up in the central part of Pennsylvania. His owners brought him  down to Florida to visit family and friends and now he's on his way back home. I wished him a safe journey as he pulled out of the campground yesterday morning.

Speaking of yesterday morning,  it was about 9:50 when we pulled out of Kelly's. Once back on US 301, we retraced our route back to Callahan and then followed US 1 down to I-295. 295 took us around the west side of Jacksonville and joined back up with I-95 on the South side of the city. Once back on 95 we took it South to exit 329 where Jim pulled me into a T/A Truck Stop and topped off my tank with some of that good old #2 diesel fuel.

You see, since I'll be setting in a RV Park for at least 2 months, Jim wanted to get my tank as full as possible so there's not so much chance of condensation. My furnace also uses diesel fuel when it gets colder, so that was another reason to stop and fill up.

From the Truck Stop, we continued South on 95 and followed it down to Daytona Beach, where we turned SW on I-4. I-4 then brought us down here to DeBary and the Highbanks Marina & Camp Resort, where I'll be spending the next 2 or 3 months.

It was 12:50 when we pulled up in front of the office, so it took us exactly 3 hours to stop to top off my tank and travel the 147 miles down here.

After going into the office and talking to the nice ladies inside, Jim came out and unhooked CLT from the back of me and parked him across the road in a parking area. Then, the park manager led me into the park and to my site. By about 1:15 I was backed into my site, (the same site I was in last year, #198), and Jim was getting a ride in one of the workers golf carts, back up to the office area, to retrieve CLT and pay for my site.

I've only been here once before, but Jim and Linda have been here often enough that many of the folks in the park wave and welcome them back, as was the case as we drove through the park to get to my site. In fact, Jim and Linda both made the comment that it was good to be back in this park and this year especially, it kind of felt like they were coming back home.

Much of the afternoon was spent getting me set up for the long term. Extra attention was paid to getting me real level and getting all the utilities hooked up and looking as neat as possible. Then, because they were both tired and didn't want to cook, they headed over to the Steak & Shake Restaurant for dinner.

So,  ,  ,  ,  ,  this is where I'll be for quite awhile. There'll be many days where there's nothing to post about, so I won't be posting near as often. But, you can be assured that I'll let you know when there's anything new happening.

Did you know that DeBary Hall Historic Site is the restored winter home of Samuel Frederick de Bary, the first settler in this region? Built in 1871, the 8,000 sq. ft. Italianate architectural style mansion is open to the public with artists. displays, multimedia programs, and docent-led tours. DeBary Hall Historic Site was placed on the National Register of Historic Places on July 24, 1972.




Tuesday, November 6, 2012

SC To FL and Kelly's

Callahan, FL.

54 deg. cloudy, light rain showers, no wind.

Forecast = Overcast with a chance of a thunderstorm and rain showers. High of 68F. Winds from the NNE at 5 to 10 mph shifting to the East in the afternoon.


We got an early start yesterday morning, so it was only 9:10 when we pulled out of the New Green Acres Park. Being that we knew of a gas station/truck stop in Walterboro, we headed to it to buy me a nice big drink of that good old #2 diesel fuel. After filling me up, at the lowest price I've seen for diesel in a long time,  ($3.77 per gallon), we headed to southbound I-95 and followed it all the way down here to Florida, with only a quick "pit stop", at a rest area in Georgia. After traveling a short distance into Florida, we turned West onto Rt A1A and followed it over to Callahan. In Callahan, we turned North on US 301 and followed it up here to Kelly's Countryside RV Park.

It was 12:45 when we pulled into Kelly's so it took us 3 hours and 35 minutes to travel 190 miles and get my drink.

Jim and Linda have been stopping at Kelly's for years. In fact, one year they even spent a month here. It's a nice park with friendly people staying here, and very friendly people running the park. They have a few nice long pull-through, full hook-up sites that they save for people who are staying just a night or two, and both shaded and open back-in sites for the folks who decide to stay longer.

We'll be here one more night before heading to our destination in DeBary on Wednesday.

After getting me hooked up to the utilities, Jim took a little nap while Linda took advantage of the free wi-fi here at the park. Then for dinner, they took CLT and headed into Callahan and to the Cedar River Seafood  Restaurant,

Cedar River is a restaurant that Mr. Kelly told Jim about years ago, and Jim and Linda have been going there every time they've stayed here at Kelly's since then. They've always had very good seafood, good service and it's become kind of a tradition to go there. ; )

Did you know that on this date in 1923, Jacob Schick was granted a patent for the electric shaver?






Monday, November 5, 2012

NC To SC and Plan R

Walterboro, SC.

48 deg. Mostly cloudy, NE wind @ 5 mph.

Forecast = Partly cloudy. High of 66F. Winds from the NNE at 5 to 10 mph.


Yesterday, with the time change, Jim was up earlier than normal, so it wasn't too surprising that he was ready to leave earlier than normal. He also knew by this time, that he wanted to get well down into South Carolina and that meant a fairly long travel day, so he woke Linda up earlier than normal. ; )

So, by 9:15, CLT was hooked up behind me and we were pulling out of the Campers Lodge Campground and heading South on US 301. 301 took us down to Kenly, NC. where we got back on I-95 and followed it down into South Carolina and here to Walterboro.

The only stop we made was at the SC Welcome Center for a "pit stop" and to check tires and CLT's tow bar. Traffic wasn't too bad and for the most part, the roads were in good condition, so we moved right along. In fact, the trip went so well, that, including the "pit stop", we drove the 265 miles down here in only 4 1/2 hours!!!

Hey!!! What can I say??? I don't mess around when you turn me loose on an Interstate Highway!!!! ; )

I'm now parked in the New Green Acres RV Park here in Walterboro, where Jim and Linda have stopped many times in the past. It's kind of a neat park with very tall pine trees and almost all pull-through sites. In fact, they advertise as having "The longest and widest pull thrus east of the Mississippi"!!

The plan is to leave here this morning and head down into Florida, and that brings us to "Plan R"!!!!

Yep, you read that right!!! "Plan R"!!!!!

You see, when Jim called and made reservations for me at the Highbanks Marina and Camp Resort in DeBary for the winter, he told the lady at the park that we would be arriving on the 14th of November. Well, we seem to be ahead of schedule so yesterday, after we arrived here in Walterboro, he called the park and asked if it would be OK if we came in a week early!! The lady checked and said that they had a site avilable and to come on in!!!

So,  ,  ,  ,  ,  , now the plan is to get to Highbanks on the 7th of November and stay for at least 2 months and probably 3.

Did you know that before being known as the Palmetto State, South Carolina was known as, and had emblazoned on their license plates, the Iodine State?




Saturday, November 3, 2012

Change Q?

Wilson, NC

34 deg. clear, no wind.

Forecast = Clear. High of 57F. Winds from the WNW at 5 to 10 mph.


I give up!!!!!! Not 2 hours after I posted yesterday's blog, Jim and Linda decided to stay here at the Kampers Lodge Campground for 2 more nights!!!!! Since we've left Rantoul back in September, there's been so many changes to this trip that I've lost count, so I'm calling this change, change Q!!!!!

It may actually be change J or change R, but who really knows?  I don't think even Jim or Linda know!!

So,  ,  ,  ,  , why did this change take place? Well, as far as I can tell, it was decided because the rates here in this park are very good, (Passport America, remember?), it's nice and quiet here, all amenities work very well, and the people running the park are supper nice.

Besides, we have some days to "kill" before we're scheduled to get to our winter destination, down in Florida. : )

So, what did Jim and Linda do yesterday?  Not much.

Jim walked to the office and paid for 2 more nights, surfed the Internet, took a nap, watched some TV and cooked a steak on the grill for him and Linda to sharel.

Linda worked most of the day on her Family Tree program. Online, she has found a whole bunch of information on Jim's side of the family that she didn't have. She also watched some TV, cooked some cauliflower and got out bread and other things to have with the steak.

I don't think that there's any big plans for today, probably just more of the same. Then tomorrow we should be heading farther South, but who knows? We may have change "R" !!!!!!

Did you know that today is Sadie Hawkins Day?

OH, Don't forget to turn all your clocks back tonight!!!!

Friday, November 2, 2012

A Kick-Back Day and CG Photos

Wilson, NC

34 deg. clear, no wind.

Forecast = Partly cloudy. High of 57F. Winds from the West at 5 to 15 mph.

Not a whole lot to write about. Jim dumped my tanks, put some additional water in my fresh water tank and checked me over in the afternoon yesterday. Then for dinner, he cooked a couple burgers on the grill.

Meanwhile, Linda was doing laundry, taking advantage of the free wi-fi here at the park and putting together the rest of the dinner.

Jim did take his camera and get some photos of this CG, so I thought I'd post a few.


This is the CG sign out by the road.

Just a few of the great Halloween decorations by the office.



Looking into the park from a little past the office area.

My site. # H4.

Yesterday the weather was quite nice, but as you can see above, it's now 34 degrees and they're forecasting more cold temps for this area again tonight.

But, we won't be here tonight. Today, we'll head farther South and hopefully it'll be a little warmer. : )  I don't know just how far we'll get, Jim has 3 different parks picked out along our planned route, so it'll just depend on how far he feels like driving.

Oh, a little more about the Kampers Lodge Park here in Wilson. For the money, (Passport America rate), it's a great park with great folks running it. The new owners are working hard to make improvements, and from talking to some of the other people here in the park, Jim says that it sounds like they're doing a fine job.

So,  ,  ,  ,  , if you're traveling through the area and need a friendly, quiet place for the night, or even longer, stop by. These folks are trying hard to make your stay as pleasant as possible.

Did you know that November is "National Peanut Butter Lovers Month"?


Thursday, November 1, 2012

VA To NC and A Run-A-Way Fan

Wilson, NC.

38 deg. clear, no wind.

Forecast = Partly cloudy. High of 57F. Winds from the West at 5 to 10 mph.


Most of Tuesday was spent getting me ready to travel, at least until about 4:30 when Jim and Linda took CLT and headed over to Joe and Nancy's house. Again, Nancy put together a great meal that everyone thoroughly enjoyed.

Of course the main reason for going there was to see Joe, Nancy, Sami and Amber one last time before we left the area.

So, after a very nice evening of visiting there were h and h (hugs and handshakes), and final good-bye's before Jim and Linda headed back to the RV Park, about 9:00.

Yesterday morning, everything went smoothly and by 9:45 we were pulling out of the Holiday Trav-L-Park and making our way back to I-264. 264 brought us back to I-64, which we followed around  to the South and then picked up US 58, and headed West on it. 58 brought us back to I-95 where we turned South and followed it down into North Carolina.

By this time it was time for a "pit stop", so Jim pulled me into the NC welcome center rest area. It was at this time that Jim discovered that my vent fan in the "little room", (the room with the toilet), was open and running full blast!!! The problem was that all of the switches that control the fan were turned off and there was no reason for the fan to be open and running.

So, being that we were in the rest area and not out on the road someplace, Jim got some tools and proceeded to dismantle the fan from the inside. I still don't know what happened, but the little gears that raise and lower the fan were broken and wouldn't let Jim manually lower the lid, so that part had to be removed and the lid fastened down with mini bungee cords to stop it from flopping around as we traveled.

I still don't know why the fan was open in the first place, because like I said, all the switches were turned off. This may be a problem best solved by my mechanic down in Florida.

It took about 1/2 hour for Jim to take the fan apart and get everything secured. After he was finished we continued South on I-95, down to US 64 at Rocky Mount. Turning East on 64 for a few miles brought us to US 301 where we turned South and followed 301 for about 17 miles to the Kampers Lodge RV Park.  Jim had heard good things about this park and being that it's also a Passport America park, he had decided to try it.

It was about 1:45 when we pulled up to the office, so it took us almost exactly 4 hours to travel 173 miles and work on my vent fan.

Well, we're not disappointed with this Campground. I have a pull-through, full hook-up site with 50 amp electric and cable TV, all for $20 per night. The site is long enough for both myself and CLT , but being that Jim parked me more in the center of the site, CLT is parked along side of me. The people in the office were great and the lady led me to my site with a golf cart. The cable TV hasn't been installed on my site yet, so a man brought a long length of TV cable and ran it from a site up the row to my site.

He then waited until Jim tuned on the TV to make sure everything was working before he left.

After getting me set up, Jim took a nap and Linda worked on her Family Tree program, using the free and very strong wi-fi, here in the park. Then, about 5:30 Jim and Linda took CLT and, after stopping at the office to ask for suggestions, headed into Wilson and to Parkers Restaurant for dinner.

Parkers is mainly a barbecue place but they have chicken and seafood also. Linda had the chicken, which was very good, and Jim had a fish dinner, which he said, wasn't the greatest.

After dinner, they came back here and watched TV, worked/played with the computers until bedtime.

Jim and Linda have paid for 2 nights at this CG. Then, the plan is to leave here tomorrow and continue wandering South. We'll stop at one more CG before we get down to the Jacksonville area, where Linda and Jim are hoping to be able to stop and see Linda's grand daughter, Anna.

I hope all of you had a good Halloween. They've got all kinds of decorations here in and around the CG office, but not many RVs have decorations.

I also hope that any of you who were in Hurricane Sandy's path are OK and you don't have too much damage. This far inland, we haven't seen any effects of the storm.

Did you know that Halloween is one of the oldest celebrations in the world, dating back over 2000 years to the time of the Celts who lived in Britain?




Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Riding Out Hurricane Sandy, (Posted Tuesday)

Virginia Beach, VA. (Tuesday morning)

41 deg. overcast, SW wind @ 10 mph.

Forecast = Overcast with a chance of rain. High of 52F. Windy. Winds from the SW at 25 to 30 mph with gusts to 45 mph. Chance of rain 50%.


It’s about 7:00 AM Monday morning as I’m writing this on a word processor. Can’t get on the Internet this morning, so this will have to do for now until I can copy and paste it to Blogger.

It stopped raining for just a short time Sunday morning, so Jim went outside just to check things out. About the only thing he found was that there was a small branch from the tree to my left, laying on my roof. It’s small enough that he’s pretty sure it didn't do any damage.

In the afternoon, it started raining really hard and it got real windy and didn’t let up until sometime in the evening, although I don’t think it ever completely quit raining. Then, sometime in the middle of the night, it started raining really hard again, and hasn’t let up since.

The winds have been quite strong at times with gusts in the 40 to 45 mph range. There were a few gusts yesterday afternoon that I think were even higher than that. At times the rain was going completely sideways just like you see on TV when there’s a reporter standing out in the storm, trying not to get blown away.

It’s still dark out as I’m writing this, so I can’t tell of there’s any water standing in this park. There were some pretty big puddles yesterday already, but nothing to be alarmed about.

They’re saying that it’s going to keep on storming all day here in Virginia Beach. Then, tomorrow, things should start to improve.

I sure hope so. I've had enough rain and wind for awhile!!! : (

_____________________

It's now Tuesday morning and I think we're just about through with the storm.

By about 8:30 yesterday morning, the winds seemed to die down some but the rain kept coming down, very hard at times. On the news the whole report was about the high tide coming at about 9:30 in the morning with Hurricane Sandy's winds pushing the water onto shore, plus a full moon, which also raises the tides normally.

All morning long they had been showing flooded streets and businesses and then as the tide rose, they were showing the waves coming over the Virginia Beach Boardwalk!!!

By high tide, they had closed down some of the bridge/tunnels in the city and were showing more closed roads, some of them Interstate Routes. By noon, the water levels from the high tides were dropping and some of the streets and roads were beginning to reopen. Then, sometime during the afternoon, the temperatures started dropping and the winds switched to the west.

Meanwhile, we were still having heavy rains and some strong wind gusts.

The winds seem to have calmed down overnight and so far this morning I haven't felt any strong gusts hitting me. Hopefully the worst of it is over. Today is the last day of our 2 week stay here at the park and Jim needs to get outside and get me ready to travel.

So, was the decision to stay here and ride out the storm the correct one? Well, it appears that we've weathered the storm OK, but Jim says that if he had it to do over again, we'd head inland. We were lucky in that Sandy stayed well off shore, but there was the fear that it could turn and come on shore at any time. The winds were fierce at times, the downpour of about 24 hours was unnerving, being that we didn't know if we were going to get flooded out or not.

I think that both Jim and Linda feel that it just wasn't worth the stress to hang around in the area see Joe, Nancy and the girls, one more time. It probably would have been worth it to head inland for awhile and then come back out here after the storm was over, if they wanted to visit some more with them.

Did you know that every second, a large hurricane releases the energy of 10 atomic bombs?