Saturday, December 24, 2016

Merry Christmas

Since I last blogged this summer, I thought using our Christmas would work as catchup. Merry Christmas 2016 Dear Friends and Family, 2016 has been quite a year for us. It started with a wonderful Family Christmas at Doug’s in Columbus, Georgia. Bev joined us with her boyfriend, Gene, and 2 dogs. This made for a full house, as Doug always had a couple of dogs. Luckily everyone got along. The rest of our winter and spring were busy with activities both here at our park (SO, Sumter Oaks) and with friends. We left FL in Mid-April to attend SKP-ACRE (an area RV rally in Sevierville, TN). Larry and Cindy traded jobs, so Larry is now treasurer – what else is new!!!). After leaving SKP-ACRE, we left the motorhome in Gaffney SC for some maintenance, drove to drove back to Doug’s to rent a U-Haul trailer to take some furniture to Bev’s in Trotwood, OH. That’s part of our big news – Doug moved to Williston, VT (near Burlington) where he is now a supervisor. After dropping off the furniture, we drove back to SC to pick up the motorhome so we could go back to FL for a doctor appointment. Leaving FL again, we drove to Red Bay, AL to have a new jack system installed, another one had broken in April. Now, our summer travels could begin. We left AL, and headed for Cape Cod, MA. We had a reservation for the month of June. Of course, as they say in RVing, getting there is half the fun. On the way, we stopped at Loretta Lynn’s Ranch in Hurricane Mills, TN. Next stop was a few days North of Knoxville, and a visit to Oak Ridge, TN and WWII’s Manhattan Project. We then drove to Pottsville, PA for a tour of Yuengling Brewery – the oldest family run brewery in the US. Memorial Day was spent with friends, Terri & Phil Tobin in Westtown, NY. Then on to Cape Cod with 1 mishap. The base plate that holds our tow bar to the Jeep came loose and pulled the bumper off the Jeep. This meant that Marilyn had to drive the Jeep, without front signal lights, from the NY/CT border to Cape Cod, while Larry drove the motorhome separately, Our month on Cape Cod was wonderful. We visited Provincetown, Martha’ Vineyard, Plimouth Plantation, Sandwich, and the Adams’ homes in Quincy, among other things. We had the Jeep fixed, ate lobster several times, and relaxed. Our campground was just across the street from the ocean, so Marilyn enjoyed walking on the beach. Next stop was Saratoga Springs, NY, to help Marilyn’s cousin Paul celebrate his 90th birthday. Then we drove to the Burlington, VT area to visit Doug and attend our Escapees RV Club’s National Rally – Escapade. We were anxious to see Doug’s new apartment. It is a brand new, 3rd floor apartment with a beautiful view. It has an underground parking space, and is only about 1 mile from his work, both of which will be great this winter. We attended the Escapade, and announced the door prize winners again. It was nice because we got to stay a few extra days, and spend more time with Doug. W even went to the Stowe, VT beer Festival. Off to Maine next for another RV Rally – Lobsterfest. Need we say more – good food, great friends and lots of fun! Now it was time to start South, as Larry had a VA Dr appointment right after Labor Day. Of course, there were detours along the way. We spent a couple more nights with Doug, followed by a weekend with Larry’s sisters and family in Oswego, NY; from there it was on to North Tonawanda, NY to visit friends, Larry & Carolyn Jarvis, followed by an overnight stop to visit Bryan & Jane Rose. Our last westward stop was in Trotwood, OH to see Bev and Gene. It was a nice but stressful visit because Gene was in the hospital with severe abdominal pain, which required surgery (he is fine now. Once we got back to FL, the DR rounds started. We had the usual stuff – physicals, dentist, eyes, etc. plus VA and Ortho appointments. Larry had a full right knee replacement on 10/31, spent one night in the hospital, and was sent home to home health care, and home physical therapy. He Is doing well as of Thanksgiving, but still has several weeks of outpatient therapy. We spent Thanksgiving with Marilyn’s cousins, Paul and Peg, and other relatives and friends. It was delicious as always. We have no special plans for Christmas, as we do not go north in winter. So we will join in the activities here at Sumter Oaks for Christmas and New Year’s. We hope this finds each and every one of you in good health while you enjoy this Holiday Season. We wish you all the very best now and throughout the New Year. A Very Merry Christmas to you all. Love, Marilyn and Larry

Friday, August 5, 2016

2016-08-05 Friday, Elks Lodge 371, Lewiston, Maine

This is a nice Elks Lodge site. They have one 30 amp electric site, and we were lucky to be the only RV here. WE arrived with empty waste tanks, and a full fresh water tank. There is room for boon docking. We will stay for 3 nights before moving to The Pumpkin Patch in Hermon ME for the Escapees Chapter 3 Lobster Fest rally.

During the Escapees National RV Rally (Escapade), Marilyn and I were responsible for giving out door prizes on Sunday, Monday and Wednesday nights. The early staff collected national and local door prizes. We collected the door prizes from the vendors selling their wares at the Escapade. Then we sorted the gifts into groups of approximately 20 prizes per night with values of %50 aor more. So we had 60 plus groups of 1 to 4 door prizes per group for fun half hours of door prizes. Once our jobs were taken care of, we shopped the vendor area, attended some seminars, and had fun meeting new and old friends. Here is Marilyn reading the rules for the drawings (note: Robert is in charge of pulling the tickets from the drum for Marilyn to announce the winners).IMG_6946. My job was to pick and describe the prizes.IMG_6949. This is a fun job, as people come up and say, I know you, you gave out door prizes but you didn’t call my name.

Even though Escapade was over, we still stayed to spend time with Doug.

We finally said goodbye to Burlington on Monday, August the 1st. We drove across Vermont into New Hampshire, AS we were leaving Vermont, we saw our first real Eastern US Moose on the side of the road. As we were driving into Gorham, NH, Marilyn received a phone call from Mary Olsen. She, Garry and Sarah were behind us. We pulled into a parking lot for hugs. Later, we arranged to take the Cog Railway to the top of Mount Washington the following day.2016-08-02 Mt Washington Cog Railway Trip. We all made it to the top of Mount Washington.2016-08-02 Mt Washington Cog Railway Trip2016-08-02 Mt Washington Cog Railway Trip. After getting to the top, it was not easy for me to climb down over the rocks.

On Thursday, the 4th, we moved to the Elks Lodge in Lewiston, ME, and today we shopped at LL Bean in Freeport, ME. Marilyn found a rain jacket, and I have new shoes.

Hugs, and Type at you later.       

Monday, July 18, 2016

2016-07-18 Shelburne Camping Area

My last blog was June 26, 2016 while we were still on Cape Cod. Since then we have done a little sightseeing, visiting friends and relatives, and moving to Vermont for the Escapees RV Club’s Escapade (national rally).

After leaving Cape Cod, we drove to Bellingham, MA for a week including the 4th of July. We also met Jack and Pat Mulhall for a late lunch at Jack’s Abby Brewery – great lunch and delicious beer. We also took the train in to Boston to tour the State House, and the old State House.2016-07-05 Boston Commons2016-07-05 Massachusetts State House2016-07-05 Massachusetts Old State House.

From Bellingham, we moved to Gansevoort, NY to spend time with Marilyn’s cousins (Gifford Family) and to support Paul at his Pre-90th Birthday celebration.2016-07-09 Paul Gifford's Pre-90th Birthday Cake.

Then on Wednesday the 13th, we moved to the Shelburne Campground to visit our son Doug who moved to Burlington, VT in May. Yesterday, we took the scenic boat ride on Lake Champlain aboard the Ethan Allen III.2016-07-17 Lake Champlain Boat Ride. We saw the two Burlington Harbor lighthouses.2016-07-17 Lake Champlain Lighthouse 2016-07-17 Lake Champlain Lighthouse. Burlington looks great from the water.2016-07-17 Lake Champlain Boat Ride.

Wednesday we move to the Essex Junction Fairgrounds to start getting ready to give out door prizes.

Hugs, and type at you later.

Sunday, June 26, 2016

2016-06-26, Campers Haven, Cape Cod, MA


My last blog was on the 18th, and sine then we have relaxed at home, don a little sightseeing,shopping, eating lobster, etc..

.Friday, June 24th, we took a boat ride out of Harwich Port along Monomoy Island to see seals and lighthouses. We saw many seals, but pictures were difficult due to the rocking of the boat. 2016-06-24 Monomoy Island boat to see Seals2016-06-24 Monomoy Island boat to see Seals2016-06-24 Monomoy Island boat to see Seals.

Then yesterday, Saturday June 25th, we went to see the Adams Houses at the Adams National Historical Park in Quincy, MA. They have a nice Visitor Center downtown where you can see a movie about the lives of John and John Quincy Adams, and sign up for the trolley that takes you to the homes tours. The town of Quincy is named after an ancestor of John’s wife, Abigale Smith.

John Adams, 2nd US President was born and raised in this house. 2016-06-25 House where John Adams was born2016-06-25 House where John Adams was born, while John Quincy Adams was born and raised in this house just a few yards away. 2016-06-25 House where John Quincy Adams was born. After spending many years abroad in Paris and London, John Adams bought the house he called “Peace Field”, 2016-06-25 Peace Field, home of John and John Quincy Adams . All three home were owned by members of the Adams family until they were given to the Park Service. Back at the visitor center we walked down to the church where they are buried. In the basement of the church IMG_6921IMG_6922 (a church built by the Adams family) are 2 crypts. John and Abigale Adams are buried in one IMG_6929, and John Quincy and Luisa Catherine are buried in the other IMG_6928. As the docent said, where else can you find two Ex-Presidents buried in the same church?  .  `

Saturday, June 18, 2016

2016-06-18, Saturday, Campers Haven , Cape Cod.

Thursday, the 16th, we drove the rental to Sherborn, MA, where we had a wonderful visit and lunch with Jack and Pat Mulhall. While there, Anchor Auto Body called and said our Jeep would be ready about 2:30 on Friday. Lots of traffic on the surface streets heading back to the Cape.

Friday, the 17th, was another beautiful day on the Cape. After breakfast, we decided to tour the Cape Cod Brewery 20160617_121605-001. They only have one tour per day, and that is at 11am. The sun isn’t even over the yardarm. I guess they don’t want the tourists to interfere with the serious afternoon drinkers. It is a small brewery servicing a 60 mile area, but their beer is delicious. We ate lunch at Spanky’s Clam Shack on the Hyannis Harbor 20160617_132843-001. After lunch, we picked up the Jeep and did some shopping on the way home.

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

2016-06-15 Wednesday, Campers Haven, Cape Cod


Our month here on Cape Cod is half over.

We were going to take the Cape Cod Tour Train on Saturday, the 11tth, but it was raining, so we took the train on Sunday, the 12th. IMG_6793IMG_6794IMG_6800IMG_6801 The train runs from Hyannis to Bourne on the Cape Cod Canal.  Along the way, our view was mostly blocked by trees. But we did getnsome good views of the Cape Cod Canal, some cranberry bogx and salt marshes. 2016-06-12 Salt Marsh. The historical narration was great to the extent we could understand over the screaming babies. After the train ride, we drove to see tha Chatham Light 2016-06-12 Chatham Lighthouse, the Nauset Light 2016-06-12 Nauset Light, and the deactivated Three Sisters Lights 2016-06-12 Three Sisters Lighthouses Cape Cod2016-06-12 Three Sisters Lighthouses Cape Cod.

On Monday, the 13th, we tok the Jeep to Anchor Auto Body to leave it for its bumper and base plate replacement. After lunch, we went to take the Cape Cod Potato Chip Factory. It is a nice short self guided tour.

Tuesday the 14th, we drove the rental car, a Honda Accord (we wont replace the Jeep with a car that close to the ground) out to Provincetown. There we went to the Pilgrim Monument and Museum 2016-06-14 Pilgrim Monument Provincetown, MA2016-06-14 Pilgrim Monument Provincetown, MA. Of course there were lighthouses to see before we got home. First, we were able to get a distant view of the Race Point Light 2016-06-14 Race Light Cape Cod. Next, we stopped to see the Cape Cod, or Highland Light 2016-06-14 Cape Cod (Highland) Light2016-06-14 Cape Cod (Highland) Light.

Today is the 15th. After waiting around for a call we were supposed to receive at noon, I called at 3pm. The car may be ready tomorrow afternoon. Oh, well.

Friday, June 10, 2016

2016-06-10 Friday at Camper’s Haven on Cape Cod

Monday, the 6th, we drove in to Hyannis for a Jeep oil change at Jiffy Lube. Then we drove to Woods Hole trying to get information about the ferry to Martha’s Vineyard. We had better luck gritting the information from the internet. But we did have a lunch in Woods Hole.

Tuesday. the 7th, we drove to Sandwich, MA, to the Cape Cod Canal Museum, and had lunch across the street at Seafood Sam’s. While eating lunch, we watched boats travel up and down the canal; including this tug towing a barge. 20160607_12490120160607_124910. After lunch, we started back to the RV, stopping in Barnstable to see the Sandy Neck Lighthouse. IMG_6778IMG_6779.

Wednesday, we took another day to relax at home.

Thursday, the 9th, was to be our day to tour Martha’s Vineyard, but it was so windy we decided not to take the ferry. Instead, we drove to Plymouth, MA. Of course we took pictures in the harbor of Plimoth (note: the colony’s first Governor, William Bradford, spelled it Plimoth in his journal) Rock and the Mayflower II. The rock doesn’t look large enough to have been the stepping stone to land. IMG_6784 However, the son of one of the original inhabitants of Plimoth identified this rock. The Mayflower II is a replica that still sails. 20160609_105002.

Leaving downtown Plymouth, we drove out to Plimoth Plantation IMG_6786, founded in 1947, is a re-creation of what Plimoth Colony and a Wampanoag village would have been like in 1647. IMG_6789IMG_6790. There are docents in period dress that speak and answer questions in 1647 character. In fact, they study the inhabitants they represent. An addition since we were here 30 years ago is a group of docent who speak modern English.

Today, the 10th, we are relaxing again.

Sunday, June 5, 2016

2016-06-05, Sunday on Cape Cod

It has been interesting 10 days since my last blog.

We had a wonderful Memorial Day weekend visiting our good friends Phil and Terri Tobin 20160528_122607 in Westtown, NY. We stayed at Pleasant Acres Farm Nd RV Park in Sussex, NJ. It is a very nice gated RV park where they give you two tokens per day to get back in if you leave. Not the cheapest, but it is the closest to the Tobin’s. Next time we visit, we will try their side yard, if we can get level.

We left on Tuesday, the 31st, driving east on I-84. After eating lunch at the CT welcome center, we started to get back on the road when  we heard strange noises. We got out and found the Blue Ox tow bar connected through the bumper to the base plate which was hanging by the safety cables to the Jeep frame. The bumper and base plate were on the ground.  20160531_124558. I got the bumper and base plate off, and the wires all tied up.20160531_181638. Marilyn then got to drive the Jeep without signal lights while I drove the motorhome to Cape Cod. We are staying at Campers Haven in Dennisport, MA for the month of June.

Thursday morning, 6/2, we went to the local Jeep dealer. They said they did not do body work, but suggested Anchor Body Shop. Anchor said to bring it back Friday morning, and they would put the old bumper back on temporarily. Insurance is paying for everything above the deductible, and parts will be in next week.

So, Friday the 3rd, we spent the day walking around the mall across the street from Anchor Body Shop. They put the old bumper on, and we have signal lights. On the way home we stopped for our first lobster of the summer.20160603_18252820160603_18284720160603_182855. It was delicious.

Yesterday, the 4th,, we spent the afternoon at Cape Cod National Sea Shore visitors center. Today we have stayed in because it is misty, and it is supposed to rain heavy late this afternoon and evening.