Sunday, December 25, 2016

Mery Christmas from Key West

As you can probably tell by the title, we decided at the last minute to go ahead and stay in Key West for the season. Even with all the issues, it's still Key West and the weather and people we are meeting are great!!! We have been spending more time hanging out with friends here in the park this year, than running all over town trying to see and do everything. We did go downtown once for a Holiday Concert/Street Party at the historic Customs House, it was a good time and met up with and made some new friends from the RV Park there also. Today we are off for Christmas Dinner here at the park with friends new and old, so I must be going.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to everyone and we'll see you next year!!!

Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Key West

 After spending Thanksgiving with our daughter and family in Atlanta we made it into Key West a few days later. We did however make one profitable stop along the way, a Casino along the Tamiami Trail in south Florida. The Casino allows over night RV parking in their back parking lot, so we took advantage of that before starting the several hour journey to Key West. We found out, by becoming Players Club Member, you were given 30.00 free play, so 60.00 between the two of us. Sheryl played for a while and we eventually cashed out 60.00 to the good....Woo Hoo!!! Of course we gave some back to the casino for dinner, so overall not a bad stop over. The next morning we awoke and made the leisurely drive through the keys.

 Upon arriving we went through all the standard check in procedures and were taken to our dry camp spot where we spent 6 days. Similar to last year at this time, and enjoyed our first Key West sunset.

 After our 6 days in dry camp we lucked out and scored a pretty nice spot in full hook ups for our 2 week stay there, The weather here has been hit and miss, windy, rainy and cool for a few days and then sunny and warm and back again. No complaints here though, considering the weather in the rest of the country.

 One of the events we missed last year was the Key West Lighted Bike Parade, so this year we made it a point to join in. The parade is for charity and the entry fee is an unwrapped toy. After decorating my bike, I turned in a nice soccer ball and got all registered for the ride, There turned out to be several hundred folks participating which made for a great ride around town.

 Once downtown, you had the choice of riding back to the starting pint or stopping off at the street party put on by the ride organizers, we chose the later of course! The band was great, playing some good down home blues, we had a great time!!!

 The next event we tried was Bochi Ball. Basically you roll a small ball down the court and then roll larger ones trying to get closest to the small one. Fun game with some fun folks, again a new experience for us.

The base is having its monthly Yard and Crafts sale this weekend. I spent the day getting out some of my photos and framing them up. Last year I offered them as prints only, so this year I though framing them would be a nice touch, we'll see how it goes.

That's been about it down here these last couple of weeks, just enjoying the warmer weather and day to day life. We were really looking forward to being here this year, however once we got here after a few days things just seemed to familiar, I guess spending so long here last year, we're just not feeling it this year. So, after talking about it, we decided to leave Key West early and head up into an area of Central Florida we both haven't been to before. Besides being here for so long last year, there were other factors which helped drive our decision to leave early, so without a long drawn out complaint session, we'll just say the bad things about the park haven't changed and along with a few more things that are just making it worst. Drop us an email if you'd like any details,

Well, that's it for now, we are looking forward to heading out and exploring a new part of Florida and we'll see you back here next time. So until then.................................  

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Holiday Family Photo Shoot

 We made it into the Atlanta area Saturday afternoon. We're moochdocking at our Daughters house for the week and going to enjoy a family Thanksgiving together.  We've just been enjoying visiting with the kids and seeing their new house. Yesterday, we took off to a local park for a family photo shoot and for the kids to have some nice updated pictures. The park had a covered bridge and nice rocky stream, making for some great backdrops. We had a fun day out, here are a few of the shots I got.

I even got out from behind the camera, so Sheryl and I could get some nice pictures also.

Ok, that was just a quick update to get some out the photos out for our friend and family to see, so until next time................................see ya then!!!

Friday, November 18, 2016

New Carpet for the Motorhome

 Sheryl has been wanting new carpet in the motorhome for as long as we've had it, so, after much research and searching for installers that were at least somewhat reasonable, we finally had it done.
One thing we found in our search was, RV dealers and RV Renovators charge a crazy amount of money to lay new carpet in an RV. So with those options off the table she started looking and calling regular home carpet dealers, most all of which had never done or didn't do RV's. While here in Huntsville, she continued her search and with a call to the local Carpet One store, they said they could do it. We took a drive over to the store and talked with the manager who told us they do and have done several RV's. We looked at different carpets and talked pricing (material and install) and it didn't sound to bad, but of course he couldn't give a final price with out coming out to the rig, take some measurements and look at the work involved. He came out the next day with a few samples that we had picked out in the store, figured out the square footage and came up with a price. Well, of course it was more than I wanted to spend (Mr Cheapscape here) but much much lower than the RV specialty places (go figure). We mad the deal and set up an install date for yesterday.

 We arrived bright and early at the shop and they went right to work. Now I must admit, being the skeptic that I am, I was worried about how good a job they were going to do. However after talking to and watching the installers I was more than confident they would do a good job, I was surprised that that actually removed the couch, bed frame and captain chairs as well as being very detailed in their work. Sheryl and I were highly pleased and our fears reduced.

  We spent the day out and about around town, so we would stay out of their hair, however it still took almost 11 hours. We could only kill so much time in town, so it was back to the store, pulled out the camp chairs, made a couple drinks and just watched the show.

The finished product!!! Can't really tell much in pictures, but it is much nicer than the old worn out carpet. We picked a good quality carpet, not the most expensive but still very nice. The guys did a great job and we have nothing but good to say about our experience here. So if your looking to have new flooring put in your rig, just do your research, take your time and find the right folks, We're glad we did.

The next project on the list and final servicing for this year was the generator. We were going to have it serviced at the Onan Service Center while we were having the engine serviced, but they quoted us a more than crazy price for the service. We waited, since we knew we wouldn't need the generator until Key West, to find some place a little more reasonable. Since we were going to be here in Huntsville for a month, I contacted the local motorhome dealer and got a quote more inline with what I understand most folks pay. I made an appointment for today and had it done. We were going to find someplace in Florida to have it done, but it worked out for the better and now we don't have to worry about it.

Ok, this is the last post from Huntsville, tomorrow we head to our daughter new home in Atlanta to spend Thanksgiving. We will be there a week, then we'll be making a beeline for Key West.

That's all the news that's fit to print for now, so we'll see you next time from Atlanta GA. 

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Lynchburg, TN

 Week three here in Huntsville has been pretty much the same as the last two, with a couple of exceptions. The first one was working on a major renovation to the motorhome which should be completed tomorrow, so you'll just have to be left in suspense until next time. Next was a trip to Lynchburg, TN and to tour the Jack Danial's Distillery. Lynchburg is about an hour north of Huntsville and a nice drive through the back roads. Now, I've been to the distillery about 15 years ago and even though I'm not a whisky drinker, I really enjoyed seeing how it was made (still pretty old school) and thought Sheryl would enjoy the tour. We arrived around 11:00 and wow what a surprise, once a cool old place to visit has now become a full blown tourist trap, Visitors Center, tour buses the works!!! Even the once free tours our now highly priced.....we were very disappointed, so much so we decided to forgo the tour and just check out the town. Luckily, the town itself hasn't changed much except maybe a few more shops, but still quite quaint. We enjoyed one of the best lunches we've had in a long while at the bakery/cafe and just walked around taking it all in.

A few shots from around town.

The town, also being the county seat, has an old Jail turned Museum. A very interesting place built in the early 1800s and was still in use until 1990. The only reason the shut it down was due to an attempted break out. Seems a fire was set under the building in hopes the prisoners would be evacuated and thus aid the escape. It was foiled by the Sheriffs little girl when she felt the wood floor getting hot, the fire was discovered and promptly put out. Being it was built so long ago, you could imagine it was not the place you wanted to go for any length of time, only 4 cells (2 men, 2 women's). It even seems Jessy James spent alittle time in the pokey, he sure did get around.

After a couple hours we headed back home, all was not a wash as we really enjoyed our time there. That's been our week, stay tuned for the big reveal in a couple of days. Ok, it's big for, until then.............................

Saturday, November 5, 2016

Week Two Here in Huntsville

 Week two here in Huntsville has been pretty much the same as week one, a lot of just day to day living. You know, all the fun stuff, housekeeping, laundry, shopping...........ahhhhh the fulltime lifestyle, the fun never We have gotten out and explored the town and checked out the fall colors in the nearby mountains. The fall colors have been nice, but due to the extreme drought conditions here in north east Alabama, they haven't been amazing. The leaves do a quick color change then promptly dry out, shrivel up and fall, it's been a bit disappointing, but still nice. I have done a little hiking it the mountains (see photo) and have been doing a lot of scouting around for photo locations which helps keep me entertained. Sheryl has been busy making a new baby blanket for our soon to be grand daughter and other assorted projects to keep her entertained. She has also been stocking up on craft stuff for our time in Key West as supplies are pretty limited down there. We have a couple weeks left here, we do have a day trip or two planned before we leave, but that will be another entry. That's it for now, I know not an exciting fun filled week to read about, but hey they all can't be like that. Ok see you back here next time...........................

Friday, October 28, 2016

Huntsville, Week One

We have been here in Huntsville for a week now and it has mostly just been day to day life, nothing really exciting. I did get an appointment to have the Jeep looked at again, the anti-lock brake lights are still coming on. Also an appointment was made to have the motorhomes generator serviced, we were surprised at the good price they gave us, but I'll believe that when when we pick it up next month, more on that later. One nice thing here at Redstone Arsenal, is the base borders the Tennessee river for quite a ways, which presents several photographic opportunities for me, just have to wait for the right sunrise/sunset. The above shot was taken at one of those opportunistic areas from the base.
That's all for now, just to let you know we're still alive and kickin and we'll see you back here next time!!!

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Grand Ole Opry (Ryman Auditorium)

 Our whole reason for going to Nashville was to take in a show at the original Grand Ole Opry at the Ryman Auditorium. Sheryl is a big fan of country music and this has been one of her life long dreams. So since we were headed this way, whats better than to make one of my sweethearts dreams come true.

 We started off at the RV Park office which offers a shuttle service to the Ryman. While awaiting the shuttle we just hung out on the front porch in their nice rockers and enjoyed a cold adult beverage.

 The show was better than I could have imagined, there's not a bad seat in the house and the auditorium is in a small intimate setting. Tonight's acts included the Larry Gatlin (tonights Host), Gatlin Brothers, Lori Morgan, Waylon Jennings son, Amy Rose and T.G. Shepard. What a great time!!!

 Of course, Sheryl had to get her picture with Minnie

 The next day we took a tour of Nashville, which just happened to include a tour of the Ryman. It was cool to see in the daylight and be able to take your time looking around and soak it all in. During the evening performance you are just rushed in and rushed back out.

 They call the Ryman, the Mother Church of Country Music, as it was originally built to hold church services and still bares the stained glass windows.

  While we were taking the tour, they were shooting a show like nothing else was going on. We learned alot about country music performers during our stay in Tennessee, mainly how laid back most of them are and how humble and connected to their roots they are.

During our tour we also took in the Country Music Hall of Fame. Didn't take any pictures as it was mainly just display after display of performers stuff.

We had a great time and packed in a lot in our two day stay. We are not big city people, but we decided we will be returning sometime to take in all the other sights, mainly the honky tonks along broadway. The downtown is kept very clean and so much to see.

That will wrap up our stay here in Nashville, next we headed south and are now staying in Huntsville Alabama and the Redstone Arsenal RV Park. We will be here for a month just to slow down a bit before stopping in Atlanta for Thanksgiving at our daughters house and the mad dash to Key West.
Ok, so until we see you again...................................

Monday, October 24, 2016

Loretta Lynn's Ranch and RV Park, Tennessee

 As we were getting ready to leave Village Creek State Park, we noticed our friends Mark and Ginger just happened to be overnighting at a nearby rest stop. We were able to get together with them for a couple of hours before they had to leave again. It was good seeing them again and they hooked us up with a great stop over on our way to Nashville.

 That stop over being Loretta Lynn's Ranch and RV Park, about 3 hours in the direction we were heading. We looked them up and made our reservations for 2 nights. Now Sheryl is a country music fan, especially classic country, so she was excited to see Loretta Lynn's place (she still lives here).

 We arrived in the late morning and got all checked in. There are 2 RV areas on the Ranch, one has full hook ups but is pretty tight and crowded and a large water and electric only area. Since we were only going to be there a couple of days, we chose the W/E only area. It was nice as there were only two other RV's in our area and a nice mountain stream about 50 yards behind our rig.

 When checking in, we found out they offer tours of the property, including Loretta Lynn's Mansion, the old Water Mill, her childhood home (replica) and museum. Sheryl was in heaven getting to see it all, we also found out, Loretta moved out of her mansion and built a small home just to the rear of it, said she didn't need to live in such a big house anymore. Funny, all you hear about is the stars wanting bigger and more, it was nice to see, she is still humble at heart.

 The electric mill across from the Mansion. This mill provided the first electric power in the area when it was built.

 Replica of her childhood home in Butcher Holler, KY. 

 Loretta's Mansion

 Pioneer Cabin Display

 Creek behind our RV

It was a great stop and we still thank our friends for turning us on to it. If you happen to be cruising down I-40 through west central Tennessee and are Loretta Lynn fans, it is well worth the stop.

As you can probably tell, I'm playing catch up with the blog. It's hard to believe we have had such poor internet service to no service at all since leaving OKC this trip.  Ok, that's it for this post, next up our trip to Nashville!!! See you then.