Thursday, October 19, 2017

Chesapeake, Virginia

Once we left the kiddos, we drove to Chesapeake, Virginia, and visited with Tom's parents, Tom and Sharon. When they retired, they moved closer to where the kids are and they had asked us to come visit.

We arrived on Monday afternoon and after getting set up, we drove on over to their house. They told us to bring Duchess and she really seemed to enjoy some place new. She wiped her muzzle on all the carpets and scratched her back on the sofa, so Pepper will have something new to smell. LOL

Tom fixed dinner for us, shrimp and pasta, and it was outstanding. We really liked it and enjoyed the company.

Tuesday we met them at 1 p.m. and they drove us to Newport News to the Mariner's Museum. Several years ago, the Monitor, the ironclad from Civil War days, was discovered in it's watery grave. Many artifacts were brought up and they also recovered the turret from the top of the ship. We spent a couple hours touring the Monitor display and it was fascinating. We saw the turret, although there isn't much to see. They keep it submerged in a water bath as it goes through a desalination process. Tom said they bring it to the surface every couple years and you can see it then in its entirely, but the rest of the time it is submerged. You can see the rim and it still is exciting even though you cannot see much. They do have a display mockup that is supposed to look like it was when it was discovered underwater. Pretty cool.

After the museum, we drove back to Chesapeake and ate at an Italian restaurant. It was very good. We said our goodbyes then as they had meetings and we had to get back to Duchess. We left yesterday and headed on down the road to Florida. Good times ahead as well.

Till next time. . .


Monday, October 16, 2017

Charlottesville, Virginia!

We left  the camp in Pennsylvania and drove on to Charlottesville, Virginia, to the KOA. Our site was waiting for us and we got in and set up.

We drove on in to see the kids and helped jockey them around to their various classes and Terry even gave Tom a ride home from work. The kids are homeschooled, but there are many classes offered in the community which the homeschoolers take advantage of. Aenea is currently in swimming, gymnastics, dance and art. Ronan is in art and swimming, I think. The classes take place in an older school which is nicely maintained and creates a good atmosphere for learning. There are places for parents to wait for their kids. It's fun to watch the kids participate in these activities.

It was a busy week staying with the kids. We were there every day to visit with them and share their lives for that week. We even did the "park day" when we went to a park and let the kids all play together while the parents visit.

We took Jocelyn and the kids "over the mountain" one day to the Amish cheese shop in Stuarts Draft. It is similar to E & S in Shipshewana, but a much, much smaller store. But they still have stuff we use. We had a great time with them. I did the driving and there were a couple places we stopped on the way back and I stayed in the car with the kiddos while Jocelyn and Terry did the shopping.

Saturday night Jocelyn and I went into town while Terry babysat. We went to see Tom's band, This Hollow Machine, play. I have never seen Tom perform and he is in two bands, so it's something I've always wanted to do. They performed in a small venue known as "The AnteRoom" in downtown Charlottesville. It was pretty cool and I enjoyed the show. It's not particularly my kind of music, but I enjoy watching good performers do their thing and I was not disappointed. It was a very good performance and the crowd seemed to really enjoy the music, as did I.

On Sunday, we drove out to Crozet to the Sun Cat Tree Farm. The farm is owned by a fellow homeschooler and all friends and family were invited out for a "music festival." I kept joking with the kids and asking if this was "Woodstock" for the "older, family" set. LOL They had three bands play and they were all very good. Everyone took their own chairs and lawn blankets and food/drinks if wanted. We did take drinks and snacks because after a rainy week, Sunday was hot and sunny with nary a cloud in the sky. Eventually, we even used our umbrellas to shade us. That was a good move, because if you can keep your head cool, the sun was tolerable. We really enjoyed the afternoon and the kids got to play while Jocelyn and Tom communed with their friends. We left a bit early because we wanted to get back to camp to feed Duchess and then we were going to join up with the kids for one last evening together before we left heading for Florida.

It was a great week and we really enjoyed our time with the kids/grandkids.

Till next time. . .


Friday, October 06, 2017

Clearville, Pennsylvania!

Where in the world is Clearville, Pennsylvania? Well, it's just a few miles up the road from Cumberland, Maryland. It happens that a campground, Hidden Springs, is "hidden" up there. We were hoping to score a spot at Rocky Gap State Park. We have read good things about this park, but when we tried to book a spot, no luck.
The colors are starting to pop out in the mountains. We have had beautiful weather and it has been cool at night and warm during the days. I imagine we will see more color going to Charlottesville.

We haven't traveled much this summer, what with my back surgery and then Terry's hernia surgery, and we had totally forgotten about the "other" three-day holiday. . . Columbus Day. We used to always consider Labor Day to be the last hurrah of the camping season, but now this holiday sneaks up and the state park was completely booked. So in looking through the area, we found this camp, just two miles up the road.

I really don't have any complaints about this little camp, other than it is a bit pricey. There is no wi-fi and no cable, but our satellite is working. But there are no "locals" to be had so that is a bit of an inconvenience for Terry. . . not much for me. We have a nice, level spot and we were the only campers in the "travel" section. There are seasonals here galore, but they are on another loop and many are hidden by trees, which is nice. We haven't inspected the showers, but the owner himself told us they weren't very good. He bought the camp about a year and a half ago and is slowly working at making improvements and he said the bath house will be the next big project. He is very nice and stops to chat, remembering our names even! We decided to stay here for four nights since it IS a holiday weekend and the chances of getting in anywhere else between here and Charlottesville on Sunday would be quite slim. So we are kickin' back and relaxing.

Today we drove over to the state park. Rocky Gap State Park has a casino. . . how cool is that? We went by it on our way to our camp and the parking lot was full. I thought that might be a good sign. So we went in this morning. It was busy, but lots of machines were empty. I did well on everything I played and walked away with more money than I spent. It was fun because I was actually entertained for a bit. Terry didn't do as well, so combined we were just about $12 to the good. But, hey, we were entertained for about 90 minutes and paid money to do it! Nothing wrong with that.

We came back and let Duchess out and then took off again. This time we inspected the state park campground. There were a lot of sites there that we could get Phaeton Place in. We were wondering in the event we are ever in the area again. Then we drove on in to Cumberland, Maryland. Terry wanted to visit the C & O Canal museum and site. They have a very small parking lot and we drove through, but it was completely full. So we motored on to Frostburg, Maryland. There was a fiber shop there I wanted to peruse, so we went a few miles up the road to that. The shop was very interesting, but I didn't buy anything. I'm just learning to crochet and I don't really want to invest in really expensive yarns until I get really good at it.

On the way back, we stopped at the only remaining toll house in Maryland along the historic National road. It was constructed in 1811 and made Cumberland the Gateway to the West establishing mile marker one. It is in the town of LaVale and is seven sided. There were placards on the sides to indicate the costs of passage through the gates on the road. Very interested. We have seen a couple others along the National Road in Pennsylvania.

Coming on down into Cumberland, we were able to find a parking place and visited the C & O Canal Museum and visitor center. We read about the importance of the canal boats in moving coal and other goods along the canal which ran from Cumberland to Georgetown. We have visited the Georgetown canal area when Jocelyn was in school there. Families often lived and worked together on the boats up and down the canals. There was an area for their mules to rest on the boat as well as the family quarters.

Once we got back to camp, we found that many more campers had arrived. Last night there were only two of us, but tonight there are about a dozen more. This must be a popular place.

Till next time. . .


Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Fall fun!

The fall routine in full swing.

We have left northern Indiana and are now in east central Indiana at Summit Lake State Park. We left Goshen last Friday and spent two nights at the county fairgrounds in Warsaw, Indiana. Got in some time visiting with Dale's family before our 6-7 week trek to the Rio Grande Valley in extreme south Texas.

Monday started off with a visit to the vampires in New Castle for blood draws for both of us in preparation for our annual check ups with our internist. Duchess the traveling Scottie got to see her vet Monday also. Monday evening was a play date for Duchess with Baxter, Blanche and Rudy at Dave and Mark's place in Muncie. Dave fixed a very nice taco salad for dinner and we enjoyed seeing them again and taking a tour of their new motorhome. I must admit that the fit, finish and equipment on their Jayco Precept impressed us. Not bad at all for a 33 foot class A.

Tuesday was haircuts for both of us and our annual exams in the afternoon, which went as expected with no major surprises. We then stopped off to see Doris, a retired teacher colleague of Dale's to have the Christmas card Dale received from relatives in Germany translated.

Today is a day to be spent in Indianapolis, I have a fall check up with my cardiologist at IU downtown this morning and Dale has her 6 month post surgery visit with her back surgeon at St. Vincent's on the north side. Tomorrow is the last doctor's appointment with Dale's dermatologist in Muncie. Friday we travel about 100 miles over to St Paris Ohio to see friends Tab and Deanna for the weekend.

Till next time. . .

Terry and Dale

Friday, September 08, 2017

Go away Irma!

Good morning!

Been watching The Weather Channel as Brandon is in place in Melbourne Florida waiting on Irma to make up her mind on her direction of travel. He has all the supplies he needs, a generator and his hurricane shutters up.

Next Thursday is our bug-out day from Elkhart Campground after 6 seeks. We leave northern Indiana for the year on September 24th and head to central Indiana for fall medical and veterinarian appointments.

We plan to move over to the storage condo in Goshen for a week to do some maintenance on the motorhome and close up the place for another year. I have to put a new ladder on the rear of the motorhome, the present one has gotten damaged over the past 6 months, evidently it was backed into somewhere. We bought a new one at Tiffin in Red Bay Alabama in June, it's the same as the old one but I have to match the hole placements for the “stand-offs” from the rear cap. Also I have to tear into our water bay to find a leak that's on top of the waste tanks, I believe it's a two-way valve where the coach fresh water tank is filled with water or the direct fresh water supply. Only seems to leak when the tank is being filled. Much easier to do these projects at the storage condo since it isn't an emergency to get the repair done since we can move out and parts are available in the area.

That said it's raining today as it did yesterday. We need to get to Goshen to trim the shrubbery. At present it's about 1/3 done and must be done by the 19th so the trimmings can go with the trash and not sit in the garage until next spring. It's supposed to clear this afternoon and be clear Saturday and Sunday; rains return on Monday in the present forecast.

Till next time. . .


Saturday, September 02, 2017

Not much happening. . .

Hi all, been an uneventful month since our last post.

I had my hernia surgery about five and a half weeks ago and the healing process has gone well. I'm a bigger baby than Dale was with her back surgery as I'm not back to our daily 2.5 mile walks yet, but soon should be. Dale has been doing her daily walks here at Elkhart Campgrounds every morning when there aren't any conflicts. I've been following the Doctors orders for the most part and not lifting any thing over 10 pounds. One of the strange side effects of my surgery was the weight gain of 12 pounds over night after the procedure, it took a few days to take it off, the weight gain primarily was due to fluids administered, I guess.

We had a minor wreck with the Flex on Wednesday after dinner with Jim and Luanne Cripe at Ponderosa Steakhouse in Goshen on senior night. We were northbound on a 4 lane divided highway when a young lady decided to turn right into the side of our Flex from the 3rd of four lanes at a stop light. That's right 3rd of 4 lanes, two through lanes and a left and right turn lane at the light. She admitted fault to the investigating officer and we both had the same insurance carrier. Damage is to both driver's side doors and the rear quarter panel. So the Flex is scheduled to go into a local Ford dealer's body shop the Tuesday after labor day and should be fixed in about a week. The good news is that since we were Ford owners and the Flex was under 5 years old we will be getting a Lincoln SUV as a loaner at no charge. Sounds like they take good care of their customers, we'll see how the repairs go.

We've been hitting various restaurants with friends and family in the area the past 3 weeks, once I felt like venturing out. Had dinner with Ray and Linda Carris at the new location of the Chubby Trout in Elkhart. I was impressed with both the food and the quiet nature of the restaurant. We had been at the old location once and never returned since the acoustics were lousy, kinda like dining in the middle of a bowling alley. We also had a visit from Tab and Deanna McBlane our fellow Alaska travelers from a few years back, that meant a visit to Das Dutchman Essen Haus in Middlebury, one of their and our favorite eating places in the area. Tab and Deanna had to get a Peanut Butter Pie fix as is the norm for one of their visits. Last Wednesday we had dinner at The Flippin' Cow just north of the campground for their Burger Night with cousin Marty and Betty Pace from just across the state line in Michigan, tonight we're meeting up again at Stacy's Steakhouse outside of Adamsville, Michigan for their steak for two dinner special. We did make a solo trip to Heinnie's Steakhouse on our 46th Anniversary August 28th … bad news as Dale sent her “medium rare' prime rib back twice and still didn't get her normal quality of prime rib, over done for her taste...excuse “someone” turned the oven up over the weekend.

We are here at Elkhart Campground for another 2 weeks and then we start our trek south, starting in central Indiana for our annual doctor appointments for us and the dog. Then it's off to see the kids!

Till next time. . .

Terry and Dale

Thursday, July 20, 2017


That was something we hadn't planned to do today. Terry had noticed a leak in a drain pipe in the ceiling in the basement. He tried a couple fixes and helped it some, but noticed it was leaking toward the far wall, which would be under the kitchen. The leak was in a pipe under the floor of the kitchen. The real PROBLEM is that the finished basement room directly under the kitchen is completely plastered, ceiling and all. We have been having some water spots on the ceiling in that room and suspected it was from the front door stoop. Not so. He came upstairs and took the drawers out of the cabinets and asked me if I thought he should go down through the cabinets. I said no. Reason being. . . going down through the cabinets, then the floor. . . . what if the leak was 3 foot out from the wall? He would then have to tear out more cabinets and the new floor in the kitchen. I said. . . NOPE! Tear out the ceiling. A plastered ceiling is much easier to repair. Well, he measured perfectly and cut a hole. The pipe was pulled apart and the two parts were not even touching each other. This is the drain line for the kitchen sink and dishwasher. When he cut and fixed the other end is when it came apart. So up till then it was a slow leak. The plastic pipe appeared to have never been glued. Once he glued it back together, it was fixed! Whew!

So we probably will not plaster it back. Terry will put a door of some sort and keep it as an access. There should be an access anyway as there is a drain cleanout right there as well! Problem solved! 

Till next time. . .