Friday, July 29, 2016

How Is Alley Cat Doing?

At the Wayne County Fairgrounds in suburban Detroit, we are only about a mile as the crow flies from where we had a home on Belleville Lake for about 18 years.  We really enjoyed our time living there, but eventually we hit the wall with all the work that went with lake living and flower gardens and greatly downsized (as partial preparation for the ultimate downsizing of full time RVing).



We don’t have a whole lot to report after a week here.  We have seen my mother several times and used her washer and dryer.  We had a family dinner at her house.  We took her to the casino once.  And we have met some friends. 

So with this somewhat slower pace, maybe it is time for a update on our kitty.  Alley has been with us for 11 years now after we literally found her in an alley one night when she was just a year old.   Someone had dumped her and after taking her for a stint at the pound to see if anyone would come for her, we went back and rescued her.  And she has done a ton of traveling with us ever since.

We estimate that she has done over 40,000 miles of traveling including 43 US States and 4 Canadian Provinces.  She has traveled in a few different cars, 4 motor homes, and now hangs out in our travel trailer when we are parked.  So, how is she doing in the such small confines.  It seems she has adapted but we will share some pictures and let our readers decide for themselves.





Thursday, July 21, 2016

Kamp Kevin

As we left Indiana on our way to Michigan, we made a stop in Ohio for a bit of work on the travel trailer. We have laughed in prior blog posts about the "free" nights of camping you get when you take your RV to the shop. And this visit was no exception. But when you buy and use any RV, pretty quickly improvements and repairs become desirable and necessary.

The shop we have used now for the fourth time is Cruising America RV Service Company in Celina, OH.


It is an independent shop with good people doing quality work at reasonable prices. And we have kinda gotten to know the town of Celina on Grand Lake St Mary's.



This time we had some cabinet modifications done, a ceiling hatch fan installed, a rear view camera added, more battery capacity added, and various repairs and modifications performed. Were camped there for 3 nights with most of the work done in one day.

We now are in Michigan camped at the Wayne County Fairgrounds in Belleville, where we lived for a number of years. We will be visiting more family and friends and reacquainting ourselves with some things in southeastern Michigan.

Sunday, July 17, 2016

Our Week In Indiana

We had a huge week in Indiana. Right after we moved from Columbus and got set up, we had a family barbeque to go to at the home of Gary's brother. Gary's sister also was there along a with a cousin and families. I guess we were so busy talking that no one thought to take any pictures. So here is one from um, er -- well at least a few years ago.

083 (Easter - Nancy 2)

On Monday, Gary wanted to ride a rails-to-trails bike trail near where he had gone to high school. We rode about 6 miles each way from Bunker Hill to Peru and back on the Nickel Plate Trail. It was a very good path. The ride was very enjoyable. We stopped a few times and grazed on wild black raspberries. It is a trail we would recommend highly. After the ride, we ate at our favorite place in Peru -- Mr. Weenie. We had one of those local delicacies we have reported on before -- the breaded and deep fried pork tenderloin sandwich.  (And we had two more at the Fair – Friends Church had the best one for our tastes, nice and thin and crispy.)



Tuesday we stayed at the campground of Mississinewa Lake , an Indiana State Park.   Gary’s brother worked exactly 50 years ago on the construction of this flood control dam.   In true state park fashion Gary made a campfire and I actually cooked dinner over the hot coals. I was quite proud of myself. Gary called me, "Campfire Grandma Boone".





On Wednesday and Friday we attended the Wabash County Fair. We watched Gary's two grand nephews show hogs, saw their other exhibits, and then watched them sell their animals at auction.  . It was quite an experience, not so much for Gary as our resident 4-Her, but for me as a city girl. I learned a lot!



Thursday, we went to a minor league baseball game in Ft Wayne and again saw the Tincaps play in what we feel is one of the finest minor league parks we have ever been to. We went a bit early so I could also do some laundry. There is no washer/dryer in our travel trailer. I wondered why Gary took an interest in researching a Laundromat for me. When I got there it was essentially right across the street from our favorite brewery in Ft Wayne -- Mad Anthony. Of course I joined him after finishing the laundry and we had dinner and just walked to the game from there.


When we arrived at the ballpark, there weren't two seats together left in the stadium. We took the tip -of a nephew, waited for standing room only to be sold for $5 each, and then by the fourth inning took unoccupied seats in a great area. And to make it an even better deal, Gary winds up catching a free t-shirt launched into the crowd between innings. It went way over our heads but hit the facing of the second deck and basically fell into Gary's lap. He didn't even have to stand to make the grab.


Whew, and if that wasn't enough, on Saturday we went to a performance of the Peru Amateur Circus. In history, Peru was a major railroad town with 3 separate ones passing through the town. Back when circuses were traveling by rail, they found it convenient because of the railroads to winter in Peru. Some circus performers would also just winter in Peru and a group of them had ultimately settled in Peru. With that heritage, someone proposed about 60 years ago that Peru should have a citizen circus. And from its modest start in a tent that Gary can remember, they now have their own permanent circus building. Every summer for about 10 days, kids from 8 to 21 from all over Miami County put on circus performances. I never could have imagined the quality and professionalism of this production. Hundreds of people are involved and it is virtually a year-round effort.



(Click on any of the pictures to make it larger.)

Thursday, July 14, 2016

On From Columbus -- For Now

After a week in Charleston and two weeks in Columbus, it was time to move on with our Summer tour of the Midwest even if we don't really want to leave little Victor. But we will be back in September.

We saw a lot of Vic in our second week of Columbus. There was the Fourth of July birthday and then we sat with him all day for three days of the short week. For his birthday, we had purchase the little one a blow up swimming pool. Our son was more than happy to see us be the ones to set it up. We were happy to do it. He enjoyed his backyard dips with us and we sure enjoyed him. Andy, Natasha, and Victor came by the campground to say goodbye for now and take in the pool and playground. And we have more pictures of Victor to share.




From Columbus we moved to the Mississinewa Reservoir in Peru, Indiana for our next adventures with the families of Gary's brother and sister. We have a pretty packed week of activities that we will be reporting on.

Monday, July 4, 2016

A Fourth of July Birthday

We timed our visit to Columbus in our Midwest tour to coincide with Independence Day.  For most people, the Fourth is one of the truly major holidays of the year.  For us, we have the most extra special reason to anticipate the Fourth.  Our grandchild was born on the Fourth of July.

We spent the whole day with just him a few days ahead of his birthday.  That boy is going to be talking up a storm.

Victor’s parents threw a family party to celebrate little Vic’s birthday.  It was a cookout, presents, cake, and plenty of little boy play time.




Sunday, July 3, 2016

Red, White, and Boom

We spent a whole day watching Victor at his parent’s house.  We really enjoyed the day with him.  We tried to get him to help Grandpa wash the car, but he wasn’t being conned into that just yet.

On the First, the City of Columbus put on its annual fireworks show – Red, White, and Boom.  It’s a great show and is a really big deal here attracting a sea of people to the downtown river valley.

We really lucked out.  The employer of our son, Andy, hosted a party and fireworks watching on the rooftop of one of their parking decks (and we parked there).  We went down early and had dinner at Schmidt’s Sausage Haus in the German Village of Columbus.



We don’t fashion ourselves as great photographers, but in trying a few different settings of the camera we came up with some interesting and unique shots.


(Click on any of the pictures to make them larger.)