Back in Florida after quite the trip. Here are pictures of of Gary’s Mom and Leeanne’s Mom and Sisters. It was great to see family and friends and celebrate Christmas. On the other hand, the trip totaled 3,200 miles, 14 nights in 5 different motels, and a traveling kitty who was so confused that she was bouncing off the walls almost every night. And we were chasing to many appointments with doctors, dentists and others. We still mainly to date have viewed Detroit as “home” even though we became residents of Texas and have been traveling the country. But on this trip we were really looking to get “home” and this time home was the motor home.
Friday, December 23, 2011
Thursday, December 22, 2011
After arriving in Indiana, this past Saturday we went out in the morning and were greeted to this light coating on our car. Not that it is surprising at this time of the year, but after having spent a very warm month in Florida it was a rude awakening.
And the rental car, well that is a long story. It seems Gary lost track of when the Boone family Christmas would be held. He was thinking Sunday even though he had been told it would be on Saturday. In his defense, it was all discussed during Andy’s wedding and that may have been a time when he was thinking about quite a few other things. So instead of three driving days of about 400 miles each, the trip north had to be changed to one of 400 the first day and 800 the second (our first day was already locked in and couldn’t be changed). And from the very beginning the noise from the rear end of the car seemed a little louder than usual, but we wrote that off to the fact that the cheaper set of tires had been rotated to the back just before we left. But when the hum kept becoming a little louder, it seemed there might be another explanation. For awhile, an exhaust system leak seemed like a potential answer, but that wasn’t it either. In Kentucky, the hum became a bit more like a roar, but you couldn’t hear it at low speeds, only at road speed. We risked it for awhile and finally made the decision that if we could get to Indianapolis we would drop the car at a dealership and proceed on in a rental car. We were able to get that far and carry out that plan, transferring almost everything with us from car to car, including the cat, who proceeded to escape into the parking lot for awhile during the process. A day of driving that started with us getting up at 5:30 AM finally arrived with us arriving at our motel at 11:30 PM.
The car was repaired on Saturday. It was a rear wheel bearing going bad. And after our gathering, we returned back to Indianapolis and picked it up and turned in the rental car.
Sunday, December 11, 2011
It seems a lot of people at the RV park will be traveling during the holidays so the park had an early Christmas pot luck dinner last night. As this is an ownership park and a lot of the owners have small dwelling other than their RV’s, the park is far more decorated than one would expect at a campground. The Christmas tree in the clubhouse was especially pretty. One couple has tons of decorations in their yard and had a lighting party.
Our holiday party included an element of charity as well. The Marine Corps in the Space Coast area was this year’s sponsor for Toys for Tots. Here is our Marine representative and who attended our dinner.
It was quite the haul for Toys for Tots. The residents and guests of the park were very generous with their gifts.
Saturday, December 10, 2011
Just because we are living out of a motor home, doesn’t mean Leeanne isn’t going to bake Christmas cookies, and bake Christmas cookies, and bake Christmas cookies. She is up to 16 varieties. She says she is done, but I am still counting.
Baking has been a bit of a challenge as she is now using a convection oven rather than gas oven and for some recipes temperature and time adjustments are necessary. And the temperature settings of the oven proved not to be accurate either. But she has it down. I have sampled every batch and they are yummy!
After three tries, she also now has perfected a scaled down Boone-family pound cake recipe in the North Carolina pottery cake pan. We tried it out on some of the neighbors here at the park and it was a crowd pleaser. She will bake one this week to take north for the Boone family Christmas.
We are heading north on Thursday in the car. We will take three days to make the 1,100 mile trip to northern Indiana. Then will be on to Detroit and Columbus, Ohio. We have been watching the weather. It’s going to be quite the shock to go from daily 70’s to lows that have been in the 20’s. We’ll have to dig out the winter coats, hats, and gloves out of the basement of the motor home. Alley has already grown her winter coat.
Monday, December 5, 2011
Yesterday we decided that we should explore the local area a bit more and make our first trip from our RV park out to the ocean and the beach. We drove out on to Cape Canaveral and went to visit the Canaveral National Seashore. We went all the way out to where the access road ends and planned to explore our way back. We parked and went on the stairway over the dune and right there at the end of the walkway was quite the surprise. As we walked on down the beach there was a couple sunbathing au naturel. And as we continued on we saw that a man was walking toward us wearing just a t-shirt. There was a stream of people on down the beach that in all likelihood were fully enjoying the sunshine as well Exit u-turn and off to another area of the beach. We had to snap one picture. Shouldn’t this one have been wearing some clothing?
Sunday, December 4, 2011
These days we have been enjoying the warm weather of Florida, getting back into a regular exercise routine through the morning exercise tape at the park clubhouse, getting to know our many nice neighbors at the RV park, playing a little golf, and enjoying a great simple pleasure each morning – fresh squeezed Florida orange juice. There aren’t many things we have needed so far that we didn’t pack in the motor home, but a juice squeezer is one of them. And I am not sure we even had one in our home in Michigan. Ah, it sure does taste great!
Saturday, November 26, 2011
For years I have been watching the NASA website to try and figure out when we could be in Florida for a shuttle launch. Well, that never worked out, but today we did luckily get to see the launch of the Mars rover mission.
We went over to a city park near the intercoastal waterway and there was a wildlife observation tower. And as it turned out it was a great rocket launch observation tower as well.
Here is your NASA rocket scientist too.
Friday, November 25, 2011
We took our very best pot luck dishes. We had seen people with these at pot lucks at other campgrounds so we purchased a couple before we set out for full timing. And we were far from the only ones who had the sectioned trays. They do work well to sample a lot of different items without them all running together.
I made a Boone family recipe specialty to take – a sugar cream pie. It was yummy if I say so myself.
Wednesday, November 23, 2011
We reserved a spot in a Florida RV park for the winter. We had debated whether to travel around Florida staying a month each in four different spots or just spending the whole four-month period in one spot. As we had been to many different places in Florida over the years, we didn’t feel like we needed to travel about to see it again so we picked just one spot. Gary had communicated in an online forum about a skid plate to go under the engine in our motor home. Come to find out, that same person had two lots in an RV park in Titusville, near Cape Canaveral, exactly the area we had been thinking about for our stay.
We weren’t scheduled to arrive here until December 1, but while we were in Jacksonville we were looking for one more park to stay in, but it seemed a lot of parks were booked up for the Thanksgiving holiday weekend. We knew the lot we would be staying in was empty, so we called and arranged an earlier arrival. Maybe we will leave a bit earlier in March too, although that will be Spring Training time for baseball here in Florida.
Here is a link for our park: http://www.willowlakes.com/
And here is a picture of our site – check out that palm tree:
Tuesday, November 22, 2011
Sunday, November 20, 2011
This home is reportedly haunted by the ghost of a young girl who was beaten and then tied up in a chair and left to die from the heat of the afternoon sun shining through the window upon her.
This was the home of antique dealer Jim Williams who was the central character of the book and Clint Eastwood directed movie “Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil”. He was tried four times and was ultimately acquitted of the murder of his gay lover. He died six months later of pneumonia and heart failure,but possibly through poisoning by the voodoo priestess, Minerva.
The Old Chandler Hospital may be the most haunted place in Savannah. It has seen much misery and death. In 1876 at the height of a yellow fever epidemic, 276 people died here in a 48 hour period. It was also used as an insane asylum.
On the grounds of the Old Chandler Hospital is “The Hanging Tree”, the reported scene of 35 hangings including those of Union Soldiers infirmed at the hospital who chose death by hanging over starvation. Look at all the paranormal activity around that tree, or maybe is was the raindrops falling at the time.
Thursday, November 17, 2011
Wednesday, November 16, 2011
We are pretty good at finding walking tours to follow so we don’t have to pay for guided tours and we are not intimidated with public transportation. We explored Savannah by foot, bus, and ferry.